Over the next few days, Bloody Elbow is going to ask for your opinion on some of the best things that have happened in the MMA world over the first half of 2016. With these being half-year awards, there will be an abbreviated number of categories – five to be exact.
For the sake of simplicity we’re going to stick with high-level and relevant MMA stuff in these posts. While I’m sure there was a ludicrous knockout in an unscheduled MMA event at The Lumberyard strip club in Des Moines, or an insane pancreas lock submission on an obscure ZST! card in Japan, let’s just stick to stuff a lot of us have seen, okay? (If that spiel looked familiar, it’s because I’ve used the same one for six years in a row. Originality? What originality?)
It’s pretty simple. I’ll post 5 options in a category, you vote for what you think was the best. If you think I left something really important off my list, post it in the comments and we can add it to the poll if it’s deemed worthy. I can almost guarantee you won’t like all my suggestions, but narrowing down these lists is tough.
Our first category will be best submission. The first half of the year saw some grappling artistry from a great many fighters, and here are some of the best to choose from.
Nate Diaz finishes Conor McGregor, UFC 196 – Was it the prettiest submission you’ll ever see? No, not really. It was your standard rear naked choke finish. But the enormity of the fight and all of the coverage made it one of the biggest moments of the year. The unbreakable Conor McGregor tapped out.
Miesha Tate makes Holly Holm tap in the fifth round, UFC 196 – Tate was most likely behind on the scorecards going into the final round of her title fight with Holm. With just a couple of minutes left, she deftly got behind Holm, took her down, and looked to lock up a choke. Holm tried and tried to get out, but eventually she passed out and Tate was a champion. With 90 seconds left on the clock.
Michael McDonald taps Masanori Kanehara out of nowhere, UFC 195 – This was largely a miserable performance for Mayday other than the last 10 seconds. Kanehara was all over him for seven minutes, controlling McDonald on the ground. Somehow, Mayday bucked off the cage, took Kanehara’s back, and sunk a choke in no time. Just like that, the fight was over.
Thiago Moises uses an insane elevator armbar on Dave Castillo, RFA 35 – You probably don’t know the names. You might not follow RFA. But this submission is a sight to behold, and you simply must check this video out.
stops Josh Barnett with a gogo choke, UFC on Fox 18 – Josh Barnett is one of the best submission artists in the world. He’d never been truly submitted in his 19-year MMA career. wasn’t exactly known for his submission game, other than a gogo choke on Matt Mitrione. Then, out of nowhere, Rothwell tapped Barnett with the same move late in the second round. It was utterly unbelievable. I still have trouble processing that it really happened, but it did.
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