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UFC Fight Island 5 post-fight bonuses: Buckley stuns with knockout of the year candidate

Check out which fighters won performance bonuses from UFC Fight Island 5: Moraes vs. Sandhagen

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Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC

The Flash Forum on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, UAE was home to a great night of fights at UFC Fight Island 5: Moraes vs. Sandhagen. The card saw six (T)KOs and six decisions.

The preliminary card opened with a really fun scrap between Tagir Ulanbekov and Bruno Silva that saw the Dagestani take a unanimous decision win. That was followed by Tracy Cortez picking up a unanimous decision of her own over Stephanie Egger. Giga Chikadze continued his unbeaten octagon run with a unanimous decision over Omar Morales and Tony Kelley defeated Ali AlQaisi via unanimous decision after a wildly entertaining battle.

Impa Kasanganay became part of one of the greatest highlight reel knockouts when he caught a kick from Buckley, who in turn hit a spinning back kick to Impa’s jaw that knocked him out standing. The second round finish was the best of the year so far, in my very humble opinion.

Chris Daukaus only needed 45 seconds to defeat Rodrigo Nascimento by knockout and Tom Breese got back in the win column with a fantastic first-round TKO of KB Bhullar to round out the undercard.

Ilia Topuria defeated Youssef Zalal via unanimous decision to open the main card, followed by Tom Aspinall getting his second win inside the octagon with a first-round TKO of Alan Baudot. Dricus Du Plessis got a first-round knockout of Markus Perez in his promotional debut and Marcin Tybura’s gameplan and cardio were the keys to a unanimous decision victory over Ben Rothwell in a surprisingly high-paced fight (mostly).

Edson Barboza looked phenomenal against late replacement Makwan Amirkhani, who was boxed up, dropped three times and boxed up some more. Amirkhani did have a period in the third round that saw him have about two-and-a-half minutes of top control, but the referee stood them up thanks to a lack of activity. As soon as the fight was upright, Barboza commenced his assault, staggering “Mr. Finland” two more times before the horn sounded. Somehow, some way, a judge found a round to give Amirkhani, but the win was Edson Barboza’s.

The main event wasn’t long, but the first round was competitive, with Sandhagen edging it out, but the second round was barely underway when Moraes ate a spinning wheel kick that put him away. Marlon took a shot in the first seconds of the round that probably broke his orbital, so he was already primed for the knockout.

Performance of the Night: Joaquin Buckley, Cory Sandhagen, Chris Daukaus, Tom Breese

Joaquin Buckley (KO (spinning back kick) at 2:03 of round 2, Chris Daukaus (KO (punches) at :45 of round 1), Tom Breese (TKO (punches) at 1:42 of round 1), Tom Aspinall (TKO (strikes), 1:35 of round 1), Dricus du Plessis (KO (punches), 3:22 of round 1), and Cory Sandhagen (TKO (spinning wheel kick) at 1:03 of round 2) all finished their respective fights, but it would be Joaquin Buckley, Cory Sandhagen, Chris Daukaus and Tom Breese taking the bonus cash for the night.

Fight of the Night:

Tagir Ulanbekov (30-27, 29-28, 29-28), Tracy Cortez (30-27 x3), Giga Chikadze (30-27 x3), Tony Kelley (30-27, 29-28, 29-28), Ilia Topuria (29-28, 29-28, 29-28), Marcin Tybura (29-27 x3), and Edson Barboza (30-26, 30-27, 29-28) all went the distance in their respective fights, but none warranted a bonus in the yes of the brass.

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