Welcome to The Queensberry Rules' annual year-end awards, starting today and continuing throughout the week. Here's how we do it around these parts:
The major categories are Knockout of the Year, Round of the Year, Fight of the Year and Fighter of the Year. The final leg is a pu-pu platter of awards ranging from Trainer of the Year to more frivolous topics.
For each category, I give five finalists, with video and/or relevant info. You tell me if my finalists and honorable mentions are lacking, and give your vote on who you think should win. Maybe you sway me to adjust the list, and maybe you sway me on the eventual winner. On the second day after a category is introduced, I give that winner and explain why. (There are virtually no major fights left in 2012, but we reserve the right to change our category winners if something crazy happens.)
So, up first: Knockout of the Year candidates. On deck: Knockout of the Year and Round of the Year candidates.
THE FINALISTS (IN CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER)
Adonis Stevenson - Jesus Gonzales
Unconscious Gonzales raised his hands, dreaming he was the winner. Not so much.
Mikkel Kessler - Allan Green
Allan Green scored the Knockout of the Year back in 2005. It's the nature of the business that he'd end up on the other end of the equation one day.
Randall Bailey - Mike Jones
As is his wont, Bailey didn't do very much until he did this. But when he did this, the biggest comeback KO of the year, it almost made it all worth it.
Shinsuke Yamanaka - Tomas Rojas
Rojas once claimed he took a dive in a fight. It would have beeen hard to fake this one.
Juan Manuel Marquez - Manny Pacquiao IV
The revenge. The lunge. The placement. The meme. The most IMPORTANT knockout of the year, at least.
THE HONORABLE MENTIONS (IN NO PARTICULAR ORDER)
Bryant Jennings - Bowie Tupou
Nonito Donaire - Jorge Arce
Javier Fortuna - Cristobal Cruz
Javier Fortuna - Yaundale Evans
Danny Garcia - Erik Morales
Joan Guzman - Jesus Pabon
Grzegorz Proksa - Kerry Hope II
Shane Cameron - Monte Barrett
David Lemieux - Alvaro Gaoana
Demetrius Andrade - Rudy Cisneros
Antonio Escalante - Leolina Miranda
Lucas German Priori - Pehuen Roberto Correa
Angelo Santana - Juan Garcia (no video available)
Yamanaka-Rojas for me. The Marquez shot was heard round the world, obviously, and forever will be amazing, but I'm a sucker for impact that visibly crumples the recipient.
for me it's the Pacquiao knockout. it left me the most dumbfounded of all of them. and it's the most perfect two-inch punch I've ever seen. Bruce Lee would be proud of that punch.
probably my next favourite KO of the top grouping would be Rojas'. it was a nice combination, followed by that quick, short left of Yamanaka.
after that, it's the Kessler KO of Green. I'm pretty supportive of any KO of Green, though.
i think 8s gonna be Nonito got the nod''''''''''''''''''coz pacquiao now shows his getting older that is why he was nailed accidentally by marquez compared to arce, that is still in his prime and also a very dangerous foe//////////
@cuTie You can't mean that. Arce is many, many, many years away from his prime. Pacquiao and Marquez were both closer to theirs by a mile than Arce was to his.
MEXICO! MEXICO! Forgot about Escalante/Miranda though, what a cracker. The thing with all these awards is that it's hard to go past the big events, purely based on the surge of emotion that goes with them.
@ALEXMAC The big events enhance some of these KOs. That Priori-Correa one is pretty good. But does it mean as much as the others? Nah. A knockout is more or less impressive in context.
This is the easiest vote since Reagan-Mondale in 1984. In words twisted from the immortal Jan Brady, Marquez, Marquez, Marquez!
@PaulKelly I'd be surprised if anyone voted for anything else. Jan Brady and Mondale references in a mere two sentences!
@safesideOTR I think Kessler might be my runner-up, too. Although the surprise of the Bailey one is compelling.
These are great fun. Stevenson loses points for celebrating like a 9 year old. Kessler gets points for celebrating before Green hit the canvas. But Juan Manuel Marquez's KO of Pacquiao provided me with the emotional highlight of the year and deserves the win for 2012.
@ChoppaB I accept all celebrations. But I do hold it against Green a little bit that he was on the mic advertising while Codrington's health was still in doubt back in 2005.
And yeah, there's a clubhouse leader. But it's still fun to compile the clips for everyone to enjoy.