MikeSwick.com’s Best of the Year: 2016

MikeSwick.com’s Best of the Year: 2016

In short, 2016 could have been better. MMA saw the unfortunate and unnecessary passing of some good people. The UFC was sold by Zuffa. Conor McGregor got bigger. USADA made people get smaller. We surveyed the staff of MikeSwick.com on their picks for all of the best (and worst) of 2016.

Fight of the Year

Mike Swick- Cub Swanson vs Doo Ho Choi
Evan Shoman- Cub Swanson vs Doo Ho Choi
Hoyt Buckingham-  Robbie Lawler vs. Carlos Condit
Cris Belkewitch- Conor McGregor vs. Nate Diaz II
Joe Carrano- Michael Bisping vs. Anderson Silva
Doug Rothwell- Tony Ferguson vs Lando Vannata

Male Fighter of the Year

Mike Swick- Cody Garbrant
Evan Shoman- Stipe Miocic
Hoyt Buckingham- Michael Bisping
Cris Belkewitch- Michael Bisping
Joe Carrano – Michael Bisping
Doug Rothwell- Donald Cerrone

Female Fighter of the Year

Mike Swick- Amanda Nunes
Evan Shoman- Cris Cyborg
Hoyt Buckingham- Joanna Jedrzejczyk
Cris Belkewitch- Amanda Nunes
Joe Carrano- Joanna Jedrzejczyk
Doug Rothwell- Amanda Nunes

Rivalry of the Year

Mike Swick- Nate Diaz vs Conor McGregor
Evan Shoman- Nate Diaz vs Conor McGregor
Hoyt Buckingham- Nate Diaz vs. Conor McGregor
Cris Belkewitch- Nate Diaz vs. Conor McGregor
Joe Carrano- Nate Diaz vs. Conor McGregor
Doug Rothwell- Nate Diaz vs. Conor McGregor

Story of the Year

Mike Swick- Zuffa sells the UFC for $4 billion
Evan Shoman- Zuffa sells the UFC for $4 billion
Hoyt Buckingham- Jon Jones suspended and stripped of title
Cris Belkewitch- Zuffa sells the UFC for $4 billion
Joe Carrano- MMA legalized in New York
Doug Rothwell- Jon Jones suspended and stripped of title

KO of the Year

Mike Swick- Alex Garcia vs. Mike Pyle
Evan Shoma – Gerald Harris (Slam) Legacy 67
Hoyt- Lando Vannata (Wheel Kick) UFC 206
Cris Belkewitch- Michael Page (Flying Knee) Bellator 158
Joe Carrano- Yair Rodriguez (Kick) UFC 197
Doug Rothwell- Dan Henderson (KO) on Hector Lombard

Submission of the Year

Mike Swick- Nate Diaz (RNC) on Conor McGregor UFC 196
Evan Shoman- Nate Diaz (RNC) on Conor McGregor UFC 196
Hoyt Buckingham – Ben Rothwell (Guillotine) on Josh Barnett
Cris Belkewitch- Miesha Tate (RNC) on Holly Holm UFC 196
Joe Carrano- Miesha Tate (RNC) on Holly Holm UFC 196
Doug Rothwell- Miesha Tate (RNC) on Holly Holm UFC 196

Comeback Fighter of the Year

Mike Swick- Mirko Cro Cop
Evan Shoman- Dominick Cruz
Hoyt Buckingham – Mirko Cro Cop
Cris Belkewitch- Dominick Cruz
Joe Carrano – Mirko Cro Cop
Doug Rothwell- Khabib Nurmagomedov

Coach of the Year

Mike Swick- Javier Mendez
Evan Shoman- Duane Bang Ludwig
Hoyt Buckingham – Jason Parillo
Cris Belkewitch- Jason Parillo
Joe Carrano- Rafael Cordeiro
Doug Rothwell- Rafael Cordeiro

Team of the Year

Mike Swick- Team AKA
Evan Shoman- Team Alpha Male
Hoyt Buckingham- Team Alpha Male
Cris Belkewitch- American Top Team
Joe Carrano- American Top Team
Doug Rothwell- American Top Team

Newcomer of the Year

Mike Swick- Mickey Gall
Evan Shoman- Mickey Gall
Hoyt Buckingham- Mickey Gall
Cris Belkewitch- Mickey Gall
Joe Carrano- Lando Vannata
Doug Rothwell- Lando Vannata