As MMA gamely stumbles into 2013, we’ve once again decided to bestow meaningless awards to the fighters and moments that caught our attention this year. CagePotato’s crack team of writers spent all month nominating winners in 27 different categories, which we’ve loosely arranged in chronological order. Use the “next page” links to scroll through this monster, or click on the following page links at your leisure. And as always, thanks for putting up with us for another year. Here’s to bigger and better things in 2013, which shouldn’t be a tough goal to hit, considering.
If 2010 was a cold beer, we’d be down to the backwash. December puts all of us MMA-pundit types in a reflective mood, and this year gave us a double-crapload of big stories, insane fights, rising stars, and utter embarrassments to wrap our heads around. And so, we’d like to pay tribute to 2010 in the best way we know how — sarcasm and insults, mostly. Without further ado, here are 15 things we felt were worthy of some end-of-year recognition, Potato-style…
The Giant Silva Freak Show Award, presented each year to the match that’s made strictly for gruesome entertainment value; fighters should ideally exhibit a tremendous difference in either size or experience level. Winner:Randy Couture vs. James Toney at UFC 118, in which a tubby boxing champ trash-talked his way into a co-headling bout against an MMA legend, and got choked out before he was able to land a single punch. This marks the first time in eleven years that the Giant Silva Award hasn’t been granted to a fight held in Japan. Also receiving votes this year:Herschel Walker vs. Greg Nagy
The Wanderlei Silva Unintentionally Homoerotic Smack Talk Award, known as "The Wandy"ispresented each year to the fighter who, when trying to hype a fight, inadvertently makes reference to having gay sex with his (or her) opponent. Winner:Josh Koscheck, for the utterly disturbing wild-eyed, tongue-waving description above of what he was planning to do to UFC welterweight champ Georges St-Pierre during this season of The Ultimate Fighter. Also receiving votes this year: Matt Horwich, for his cringeworthy rant about how he was going to Mike Tyson 10th Planet protagonist Renato Laranja.
Okay, so all the headlines weren’t positive for "The Spider" this year, but when the worst complaint you can lodge against a guy is that he acted like a jerk in toying with an outclassed challenger, you don’t have that much to complain about. He’s still the most dominant force in the MMA universe, and that doesn’t seem like it’s going to change any time soon.
Beatdown of the Year: Fedor Emelianenko vs. Tim Sylvia
Thirty-six seconds. That’s all it took for Fedor to dispatch a former UFC heavyweight champ and earn himself a ride on “the big rollercoasters” in southern California. A more satisfying and complete destruction you shall rarely see.
Best Pre-Fight Ritual: The Jackson Camp Nipple-Tweak
Yeah, you’re going to look like a creep if you do it. You’re also going to look like a creep who just spent six weeks in Greg Jackson’s gym and is now fixing to kick some ass. Rashad Evans claimed UFC gold without it, but given its track record this little ritual probably isn’t going anywhere.
Worst Event: EliteXC Primetime
"That ear popped!" When this is your main event, you already know you’re bullshit. When it ends like this on live network TV, the rest of the world knows it too.