The massive Coloradoan extended his string of first-round victories to 12 straight with a TKO win over Frank Mir, he captured the UFC interim championship, secured a likely July 3 date with champion Brock Lesnar, and topped it all off with a $65,000 check for the UFC 111 Knockout of the Night bonus.
"It's hard to have words and feelings after a fight like that," Carwin said afterward.
The unbeaten star told MMA Fighting that he was a little more nervous than usual due to the long layoff between fights as well as the fact that he didn't have his wife with him, as she stayed back home to take care of their newborn daughter.
"I was still confident in the gameplan and going to the octagon," he said. "I go to the octagon to destroy guys. I don't try to eke out decisions."
Among the other nightly award winners was Kurt Pellegrino, who scored an impressive rear-naked choke submission over Fabricio Camoes.
Pellegrino won his fourth straight with the victory.
The Fight of the Night award went to an untelevised scrap between Jared Hamman and Rodney Wallace. The matchup was filled with wild momentum swings as neither man could keep a sustained attack for any long period of time. Hamman won the close bout via unanimous decision.
The event drew 17,000 people for a $4 million gate to the Prudential Center.