2016 Caged Minds Awards


Fight of the year, fighter of the year and about 24 other, local and global Caged Minds Combat Sports Awards for 2016.

2016 was a big year in the world of Combat Sports. From main stream stories of the UFC being sold, to the USADA effect. To here in New Mexico where exciting amateurs joined the scene, some amateur we’ve seen for a while became champions, others turning pro, and pros started gaining national recognition.


Big League” (ufc, bellator, one, wsof) Awards

New Mexico Big League  Male Fight of the Year

Donald Cerrone went 4-0 in 2016, submitting Alex Oliveira, and scoring knockout of Patrick Cote, Rick Story, and Matt Brown.

New Mexico Big League Female Fighter of the Year

Michelle Waterson went 1-0 in 2016 Submitting Paige VanZant in the Main Event of UFC on Fox 20

Fight of the Year

UFC 206: Doo Ho Choi vs Cub Swanson a fun 3rd slobber knocker that had spectators saying how is he still standing many times. Swanson took the decision victory.

Robbery of the Year

UFC 195: Robbie Lawler def. Carlos Condit by split decision. Condit out struck Lawler by 3-1 ratio

Knockout Kick of the Year

Landon Vannata Spinning Wheel Kick of John Makdessi at UFC 206

 Knockout Knee of the Year

Diego Rivas Flying Knee KO of Noad Lahat UFC Fight Night 82 2/6/16

 Knockout Punch of the Year

Michael Chandler def. Patricky Freire KO (punch) 2:14 R1 Bellator 157 6/24/2016

Submission of the Year

UFC 196 March 5th, 2016: Miesha Tate def. Holly Holm by rear naked choke at 3:30 of R5. Only 1 submission this year came from a fighter down on the score cards in the final minutes of of title fight

Woman’s  Fighter of the Year

UFC Woman’s Bantamweight Champion Amanda Nunes 3-0 in 2016 including winning the world title and defending it with 1st round victories of Miesha Tate and Ronda Rousey

Male Fighter of the Year

UFC Bantamweight Champion went 4-0 in 2016 with 3 1st rd knock out win and a decisive unanimous decision win over previously never defeated in the weight class now former champion Dominick Cruz .

MMA Event of the Year


Local Amateur Awards

Local Male Amateur MMA fighter of the year

Esias Gordo 4-0 3 wins by knockoutwon KOTC Am Flyweight (135) and defended title

Local Woman’s Amateur MMA Fighter of the Year

Cynthia Arceo KOTC Am Strawweight Champion 2-0 defeating Ireland Moran and Ashley Samples by decision

Local Amateur Knockout  of the Year

Jess Martinez (7-0) def. Javier Rodriguez (3-1) via KO (head kick & punches) 0:17 R 1- KOTC SW AM 155 title 8/13/2016

Local Amateur Submission of the Year

Austin Wourms def. Nikko Nathan via submission (triangle choke) 1:54 R 2 Havoc in Hobbs from February

Amateur Fight of the Year

HAVOC IN HOBBS from February – School of Hard Knocks, Nathan Kwedor 3-0 vs Alex Navarro 5-0

Local Professional Awards

Local Male Fighter of the Year

Sidiah Parker 3-0 in 2016, 2 wins in the 1st round including winning the KOTC Middleweight title with a 1st rd TKO

 Local Woman fighter of the Year

Nicco Montano 2-1 in 2016 including winning the KOTC Woman’s Jr. Flywight title (125 lbs)

Local Pro Breakout fighter of the year

14 months after his last amateur fight Moreno turned pro, debut at Light Heavyweight knocking out Mike Cook in 32 seconds. Moreno caped off his year dropping to Middleweight, an going 2-0 submitting (then 2-0) Cody Yohn in the main event of Jackson’s MMA Series XX


Local MMA Fight of the Year

Johnny Guillen vs Tim Sosa from King of the Cage Duke City 2, After 5 hard fought rds, Sosa walked away with a split decision victory and the King of the Cage Jr. Flyweight championship
Local MMA Knock out of the Year– 
I couldn’t choose 1 so please so to the Caged minds Combat Sports New Page on Facebook and Cast your vote.
Maurice Jackson def. Armando Montoya
Armondo Montoya def. Steve Hanna
Anthony Rozema def. Randy McCarty
Josh Moreno def. Mike Cook

Local MMA Event of the Year

KOTC Will Power from August 13th, 14 fights 11 finishes/

Local Boxing Awards

2016 Male Boxer of the Year

We have co-winners for this award Jason Sanchez 4-0 & Matthew Griego 6-0 in 2016

Boxing Knockout of the year

Cristian Castillo (1-0) def. Angel Avila (0-1) by KO (right hook) 0:46 From Legacy Promotion New Mexico Top Contenders 12-3-2016

Local Boxing Fight of the Year

Alex Holguin vs. Gene Perez from January’s Homles Boxing Cold War 2

Boxing Event of the year


NM Combat Sports Supporter Award

Tom “Pops” Crego-  The New Mexico combat sports scene has had it’s ups and downs, but one consistent has been Tom Crego. “Pops” as he’s known in the NM Boxing community has been at every Boxing event I’ve ever covered. Even seen him at a MMA event or two. And I just wanted to take a minute to give a little thanks to a true fan, who supports every fight and every fighter.


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