It's no surprise that Anthony Smith earned a performance bonus at UFC on ESPN+ 11 on Saturday in Stockholm, Sweden, after he retired Alexander Gustafsson. It was certainly no greater surprise that Aleksandar Rakic also earned a bonus after his stunning knockout wowed the sold-out crowd.
Leonardo Santos set the bar high early for the fighters looking to earn bonuses, as he landed a one-punch, walk-off knockout of Stevie Ray on the UFC Stockholm prelims. He put an end to the fight just 2:17 into the first round, which was enough to earn a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus.
The UFC did not issue a Fight of the Night bonus, instead opting to award four Performance of the Night awards with so many fighters landing spectacular finishes.
Makwan Amirkhani made his first trip to the Octagon in more than a year on Saturday, but didn't look as if he had skipped a beat. Amirkhani wrapped Chris Fishgold up with an anaconda choke and kept squeezing and tightening the hold until he forced the tap late in the second round.
Rakic made his fourth start in the Octagon, taking the UFC Stockholm co-main event slot with Jimi Manuwa after it was vacated when Ilir Latifi had to withdraw because of an injury just two days before fight time. Rakic made the most of the opportunity landing a stunning head-kick knockout on Manuwa 42 seconds into the bout, earning his Performance of the Night bonus.
Smith certainly couldn't be left out after he went midway into the fourth round with one of the best UFC light heavyweights of all time before submitting the Swede with a rear-naked choke. The victory unfortunately sent Gustafsson into retirement, but it earned Smith an additional $50,000 for the performance.
Officials announced that UFC on ESPN+ 11 at Ericsson Globe Arena was sold out to the tune of 14,319 people in attendance. The event produced a gate of $2,000,000.
UFC on ESPN+ 11 Performance Bonuses in Stockholm, Sweden
Performance of the Night: Anthony Smith
Performance of the Night: Aleksandar Rakic
Performance of the Night: Makwan Amirkhani
Performance of the Night: Leonardo Santos
UFC on ESPN+ 11 Gate and Attendance at Ericsson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden
Attendance: 14,319 (SOLD OUT)