It's hard to argue Vitor Belfort's had a better single night in his entire mixed martial arts career. The UFC middleweight not only earned a title shot against the winner of Anderson Silva vs. Chris Weidman, but did so by becoming the first man to stop Dan Henderson via TKO in the American's storied history. Because of that performance, he also pocketed an extra $50,000 as he earned Knockout of the Night at UFC Fight Night 32 at the Goiania Arena in Goiania, Brazil.
Belfort, 36, stopped Henderson, 43, almost with ease, clipping the American with a left uppercut that dazed Henderson. The Brazilian followed up with ground and pound, but sealed the deal with a left head kick that landed flush and sent Henderson crashing to the mat. The end came at 1:17 of the very first round. Belfort climbs to 24-10 in professional MMA while Henderson slides to 29-11.
As for Submission of the Night, and also claiming $50,000, the honor went to Adriano Martins, 31, who straight armbarred Daron Cruickshank, 28, in the second round. Martins was able to work from half guard and look up the double wrist lock grip, but in application, switched it to the straight arm variety, which immediately yielded the tap from the American. Martins moves to 25-6 while Cruickshank drops to 13-4.
Winning Fight of the Night - and each earning $50,000 - were Omari Akhmedov and Thiago Perpetuo, 26. In a back and forth affair, Perpetuo landed hard strikes that had the Dagestani reeling and often stumbling on his feet. Akhmedov was able to score a few takedowns and even attempt a rear naked choke, but couldn't hold on for the submission. After eating hard shots and backing up, Akhmedov reversed his fortune by cracking the pursuing Perpetuo with a duo of hard right hands that collapsed the Brazilian and forced the referee stoppage. Akhmedov jumps to 12-0 while Perpetuo slumps to 9-2-1.