Post-UFC Fight Night 79: And the Bonus Goes to…

Dominique SteeleThe Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) went to Seoul, South Korea for the first time in promotional history with UFC Fight Night 79: Henderson vs Masvidal. After the event concluded, the UFC awarded $50,000 to two fighters for ‘Performance of the Night’ and two fighters for ‘Fight of the Night’. The lines to wager on these props were available at Several Bookmakerss. UFC Fight Night 79’s Post-Fight Bonus’ went to… Seo Hee Ham and Cortney Casey earned Fight of the Night honors for their three round battle of the preliminary card of today’s UFC Fight Night 79 in Seoul. Casey got the better of the Korean in the first frame, landing multiple heavy blows, including a head kick. Ham ate everything well and her chin held up like a rock. Her superior cardio and technical striking were the difference in this match-up, as she went on to out-land a fading Casey on the feet for the next to rounds en route to picking up a unanimous 29-28 victory on the judges’ scorecards, ultimately getting her first official win in the UFC. Ham was very impressive with her performance, especially considering the fact that she was giving up a massive size advantage to Casey heading into the contest. Other noteworthy fights: – Benson Henderson defeated Jorge Masvidal via split decision on the judges’ scorecards after five rounds of competitive action in the main event of the evening. Both fighters looked good and had their moments, but Henderson again edged it out in classic “Bendo” fashion. Now 2-0 in the UFC’s welterweight division, his contract is up and he is ready to test free agency, so it is a question mark whether we will see him inside the Octagon for his next fight. – Tae Hyun Bang defeated Leo Kuntz via split decision on the judges’ scorecards following three rounds of action. Bang hurt and nearly finished Kuntz in the first frame, but Kuntz survived and came back to nearly finish Bang in the second. However, Bang survived and went on to get the better of Kuntz in the third and final round, ultimately edging out the close split decision win on the cards. This fight saw arguably the strangest line movement in UFC history, with Bang opening at -180 and reaching up to +500 at one point. For those who were not afraid to take the fishy looking big dog money on the Korean, having guts sure paid off. Doo Ho Choi earned Performance of the Night honors for his first round knockout of Sam Sicilia, making himself 2-0 in the UFC with two first round, highlight reel knockout finishes. “The Korean Superboy” continues to impress, and fight fan, myself included are now eagerly awaiting his next outing. Hopefully we don’t have to wait for the UFC to go back to Asia for us to see him back inside the Octagon. Dominique Steele earned Performance of the Night honors for his third round knockout of short notice promotional newcomer, “Maestro” Dong Hyun Kim. He knocked Kim with a slam, Rampage Jackson style. After losing the first round to Kim, Steele came back and dominated the second with his wrestling, and wrapped things up with the slam early into the third, ultimately getting his hand raised for the first time inside the Octagon. His UFC debut was a disappointing first round knockout against Zak Cummings, and many, including myself expected a similar outcome in this outing, despite the fact that he had a size advantage over “Maestro” heading into the contest. However, Steele surprised with the impressive finish of the Korean. Other noteworthy performances: – Dong Hyun Kim defeated short notice replacement Dominic Waters via first round TKO in dominant fashion. Waters made the mistake of clinching with the Korean, who swiftly put the Jackson-Wink MMA fighter on his back and immediately found himself in the crucifix position. After a failed submission attempt, Kim opted to look for the TKO stoppage. Waters did his best to escape the position, but found no success. The referee gave him every chance to escape and had to ultimately stop the fight, handing Kim the first round TKO victory and ultimately putting him on a two fight winning streak inside the Octagon. – Dongi Yang defeated former RFA middleweight champion Jake Collier via TKO in the second round of action. After being hurt and nearly finished himself in the first stanza, “The Ox” came back strong in the second, hurting Collier, surviving his submission attempts and ultimately putting him away with a ground and pound TKO. It was an impressive outing by the Korean in front of his fellow Koreans, and a great way for him to make his return to the Octagon. – Mike de la Torre took a competitive split decision win over Korea’s own Yui Chul Nam in a back and forth fight. Though it was not a dominant win for the MMA Lab product, I think it was his most impressive performance to date. His boxing and takedown defense were on point, and he proved that his chin could still hold up, following his controversial knockout loss to Maximo Blanco in his previous outing. This was a solid performance by de la Torre and a good way for him to return to the win column. – The aforementioned Seo Hee Ham. The undersized Korean looked great in her second Octagon appearance against much larger opponent Cortney Casey, and after surviving heavy shots and losing the first round, she went on to win the second and third to earn the impressive unanimous decision victory.

Written by Gabe Killian

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