I’ll be the first to tell you, subjective isn’t in my DNA. Deciding the year’s best for the HOV-MMA/FightBooth Awards is a labor of love for me. I find it pretty damn tough to differentiate between the good, the great, the spectacular and the best. That said, it’s my duty to do so, and do so I have.
I broke this subject down into what I think makes a spectacular knockout. There’s a lot to be said for the dramatic statement a walk off KO has. Add something spinning to it and the star factor climbs ten fold. With that in mind, I’m forced to make the difficult choice in naming the KO of the Year.
Joe Lauzon’s KO at the hands or more to the point, at the foot of Anthony Pettis was spectacular.
Johnny Hendricks one piecing of Martin Kampmann was unexpected and dramatic.
Edson Barboza knocking out Terry Etim via spinning kick was an epic example of how to separate one from their consciousness.
In Bellator Brian Rogers KO’d Vitor Vianna with a perfectly placed jump knee. It was art.
Cung Le finishing Rich Franklin by KO was both dramatic and spectacular.
From the world series of fighting, Anthony Johnson sang DJ Linderman a violent lullaby via the straight right hand walk-off.
Last and certainly not least is Daron Cruickshank’s head kick KO of Henry Martinez was a raucous way to end a lesson in striking for MMA. Detroit Rock Cityin full effect.
I am sure there are a ton more I am missing. I am sure there were knockouts on other shows that didn’t get the publicity that are every bit the jaw droppers these were. That’s why it’s so difficult and subjective. That being said, I’m ready to name the 2012 HOVMMA/FightBooth Knockout of the Year.
No other knockout had the instant finality that Edson Barboza’s knockout had. When he kicked Terry Etim, before Etim even hit the ground, his face was paralyzed in this awful frozen pained grimace. He landed like he’d fallen from twenty feet and was OUT COLD. It was a shocking moment that shook MMA and is one of the best Knockouts I’ve ever seen. Check it out.