Everyone that has ever watched MMA will agree that the most exciting and thrilling end to a fight is by way of knockout. Knockouts bring that perfect mix of violence and technique MMA fans crave. In 2013, the knockouts were as incredible as they were abundant. Some shocked us, while others left us in awe. Some were jaw dropping, while others were absolutely devastating.
Today, I recap the 10 best KO’s of 2013, in GIF form. It would be a crime to simply list the knockouts without being able to see them. Without further ado, here are the Top 10 knockouts of 2013:
10. Jeremy Stephens vs Rony Jason: A lot of ‘Best KO’s of 2013′ lists are leaving this beautiful head kick KO out of the mix. I simply can not let that happen on my list. This was a huge win for Jeremy Stephens, and it came in violent fashion as well.
9. Dong Hyun Kim vs Erick Silva: This KO literally came out of nowhere. No one could have expected Kim to lay out Silva like he did. Just look at Joe Silva’s reaction to the KO behind the cage.
8. Emanuel Newton vs King Mo: Another shocker special, and this time from Bellator. King Mo was Bellator’s big free agent signing who was supposed to steamroll through the competition on the way to becoming the champ. Emanuel Newton had other plans, as he put Mo to sleep with a beautiful spinning back fist.
7. Demetrious Johnson vs Joseph Benavidez: Who says Demetrious Johnson can’t finish fights? After submitting John Moraga in round 5, Demetrious KO’ed Benavidez in the very first round with a big right hand.
6. Shogun Rua vs James Te-Huna: Dana White called this the KO of the century. While I won’t go that far, it was certainly an incredible vintage KO from Shogun.
5. Mark Hunt vs Stefan Struve: Mark Hunt is an incredible fighter, with incredible heart, and incredible punching power. Just sit back and enjoy him KO’ing a 7 foot tall opponent in Stefan Struve. Oh yea, he also broke Struve’s jaw from that left hook.
4. Travis Browne vs Alistair Overeem: This is not only one of the best KO’s of 2013, but it is one of the best KO’s of all time. Browne overcame Overeem’s early onslaught and made him pay with a vicious front kick KO.
3. Junior Dos Santos vs Mark Hunt: JDS was clearly winning the fight, and had no reason to throw a spinning back kick. But he did, and it landed, and it blew the MMA community’s collective mind.
2. Antonio Silva vs Alistair Overeem: Of all the KO’s on this list, this may have been the most shocking. After losing the first two rounds, Silva came out on fire in the third, and put it to Overeem with a hellacious combo. Overeem fell to the mat in a heap as the crowd went wild and the MMA world was stunned.
1. Chris Weidman vs Anderson Silva: If you KO the greatest fighter of all time, you are automatically going to be #1 on every ‘KO of the year’ list. Chris Weidman caught Silva with his hands down and put him to sleep; a feat no other man could accomplish in the UFC.
Honorable mentions: You may have realized that Vitor Belfort was missing on the list above. Do not fret, for I have not forgotten ‘The Phenom’. Belfort had three unbelievable KO’s this year that all could easily be in the top 10. Instead, I compiled all three of them below for your viewing pleasure:
Vitor Belfort vs Luke Rockhold
Vitor Belfort vs Dan Henderson
Vitor Belfort vs Michael Bisping
This article could not have been written without the GIFs, so a huge thanks to Zombie Prophet for GIF’ing the sport we love. How did you like my list? Did I leave any KO’s out that you would have liked to see? Let me know in the comments below, or on Twitter @SchlinskMMA