Ovince Saint Preux, Gokhan Saki, Jessica Andrade and Claudia Gadelha were each the recipient of $50,000 in bonuses for their standout performances at UFC Fight Night 117 Friday in Japan. Saint Preux and Saki won “Performance of the Night” honors, while Andrade and Gadelha were awarded “Fight of the Night”.
Saint Preux took on former middleweight title contender Yushin Okami in the main event. The bout marked Okami’s debut at light heavyweight after a successful stint under the WSOF/PFL banner. However, it took Saint Preux less than 2 minutes to secure a Von Flue choke for the submission finish. It was Saint Preux’s second win in a row using the rarely seen submission and his third since joining the organization in 2013.
Saki is a legend in kickboxing circles but this was his debut in the octagon and only his second MMA fight ever. “The Turkish Tyson” delivered brutal striking combinations against Brazilian light heavyweight Henrique da Silva, and also withstood several hard shots in return. As it looked like Saki may have started slowing down he landed a big left that knocked da Silva out at 4:45 of round 1.
Women’s strawweight contenders Andrade and Gadelha put on a barnburner performance in the night’s co-main event. Andrade showed pitbull-like determination after being bloodied early in the fight. She returned the favor to Gadelha, busting her up and dominating her in the grappling exchanges. Gadelha was all heart but ultimately had no answer for Andrade’s powerful top game and the judges’ scores reflected it with a unanimous decision.