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)