2012 tazmma Moment of the Year
To any MMA fan with even a shrivel of emotion, this choice is a no-brainer. There were some great moments in MMA in 2012, but one clearly has the edge in this category. First, let’s run down some of the memorable sights from the year.
- Watching Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira make his return to Rio — after a gruesome arm injury suffered last December — to submit a man who claimed that Jiu-Jitsu doesn’t work.
- Georges St-Pierre returning to the Octagon in Montreal, being badly hurt, but overcoming it to retain his title against Carlos Condit.
- Jon Jones having his arm nearly broken in half by Vitor Belfort to come back and submit the ‘Young Dinosaur’.
- Demetrious Johnson becoming the first ever UFC Flyweight Champion, even if the Toronto fans couldn’t appreciate the bout.
- The weigh-in staredown between Anderson Silva and Chael Sonnen prior to their rematch, and the shoulder punch that almost blew up MMA forums around the internet.
- Ronda Rousey turning Miesha Tate’s elbow into Jell-O.
- Rad Martinez‘s run in the Bellator Featherweight tournament, and the story behind it.
All of these were great fight-related moments, but they were all topped on December 7th, when the inspirational career of Nick Newell reached its peak (at least thus far). Facing the toughest opponent of his career, Bellator veteran Eric Reynolds, Newell finished the bout quicker than both Eddie Alvarez and Jorge Masvidal were able to put him away. Watching any prospect dominate a fighter the quality of Reynolds would be impressive, but given Newell’s congenital amputation it was something far more special. Congratulations to Nick Newell for bringing us the 2012 Moment of the Year.