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A general view as Robert Whittaker of New Zealand and Uriah Hall of Jamaica compete in their middleweight bout during the UFC 193 event at Etihad Stadium on November 15, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Scott Barbour /Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

Fighters Only Announce Nominees for the 14th Annual World Mixed Martial Arts Awards

Las Vegas - Rob Hewitt, CEO of Fighters Only, is pleased to announce the Nominees for the 14th Annual Fighters Only World MMA Awards. The event’s official voting website is now live at where fans can democratically voice their opinions about the best things in the sport.

The world of MMA has proved its ability to prosper as the entire industry has shown tremendous growth and resilience. Its constant evolution proves its millions of fans have a near insatiable appetite for all things MMA, which has led it to the fight game becoming one of the most popular and watched sports in the world today. For that, the whole industry should be proud of what MMA has accomplished in the face of adversity.

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“We are back to a full-strength awards show this year, that will be our biggest to date,” says Fighters Only CEO Rob Hewitt. “Las Vegas will once again be home to the world’s best MMA fighters and celebrity fans who will all come together to celebrate. Growing on previous years, the 2022 event will be free from restrictions and have a greater broadcast reach, making sure our fan-focussed show, the ‘Oscars’ of MMA, will pay greater tribute to the sport and its award winners than ever before.”

With a nomination period between July 1st, 2021, and June 30th, 2022, the independent Fighters Only panel searched through all promotions and regions to select the award nominees. Among the most anticipated award categories include 'Fighter of the Year', 'Knockout of the Year', 'Fight of the Year’, and the recently added ‘Fighting Spirit Award.’

In true MMA tradition, Fighters Only gives the world’s fight fans the power to vote for their favourite fighters, the knockouts and submissions that amazed them, and which nominees impressed them the most over the past year to determine who takes home a coveted World MMA Award.

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This is the only awards show where fans can have their say and cast their votes through their desktops, mobile devices, and smart phones at Voting is live right now and will conclude on September 30th.

The venue and the date for the 14th Annual Fighters Only World MMA Awards ceremony will be announced in the coming weeks.

Fighters Only Announce Nominees  for the 14th Annual World Mixed Martial Arts Awards

Charles ‘Mask’ Lewis Fighter of the Year

  • Alexander Volkanovski
  • Johnny Eblen
  • Charles Oliveira
  • Islam Makhachev
  • Francis Ngannou

Female Fighter of the Year

  • Julianna Peña
  • Cris Cyborg
  • Kayla Harrison
  • Valentina Shevchenko
  • Raquel Pennington

Breakthrough Fighter of the Year

  • Tai Tuivasa
  • Mateusz Gamrot
  • Paddy Pimblett
  • Molly McCann
  • Johnny Eblen

International Fighter of the Year

  • Alexander Volkanovski
  • Roberto Soldic
  • Mateusz Gamrot
  • Islam Makhachev
  • Khamzat Chimaev

Fight of the Year

Knockout of the Year

  • Michael Chandler (Front Kick) vs. Tony Ferguson – UFC 274
  • Ignacio Bahamondes (Wheel Kick) vs. Roosevelt Roberts – UFC Vegas 34
  • Sergio Pettis (Spinning Backfist) vs. Kyoji Horiguchi – Bellator 272
  • Molly McCann (Spinning Back Elbow) vs. Luana Carolina – UFC Fight Night 204
  • Roman Faraldo (Flying Knee) vs. Robert Turnquest – Bellator 271

Submission of the Year

  • Jiří Procházka (Rear-Naked Choke) vs. Glover Teixeira – UFC 275
  • Stevie Ray (Modified Body Lock) vs. Anthony Pettis – PFL 5
  • Oliver Enkamp (Inverted Triangle Choke) vs. Mark Lemminger – Bellator 281
  • Jessica Andrade (Standing Arm Triangle Choke) vs. Amanda Lemos – UFC Vegas 52
  • Charles Oliveira (Rear-Naked Choke) vs. Dustin Oliveira – UFC 269

Comeback of the Year

  • Sergio Pettis vs. Kyoji Horiguchi – Bellator 272
  • Carla Esparza (career)
  • Clay Guida vs. Leonardo Santos – UFC on ESPN 31
  • Aljamain Sterling (overcoming intense ridicule & injury)
  • Chris Curtis (career)

Upset of the Year

  • Julianna Peña vs. Amanda Nunes – UFC 269
  • Mariusz Pudzianowski vs. Michał Materla – KSW 70
  • Matheus Scheffel vs. Bruno Cappelozza – PFL 5
  • Ben Parrish vs. Christian Edwards – Bellator 266
  • Seika Izawa vs. Ayaka Hamasaki – RIZIN 33

Best Promotion of the Year

  • UFC
  • Bellator
  • PFL
  • Cage Warriors
  • KSW

Leading Man of the Year

  • Dana White (UFC)
  • Scott Coker (Bellator)
  • Peter Murray (PFL)
  • Graham Boylan (Cage Warriors)
  • Kerrith Brown (IMMAF)

Referee of the Year

  • Jason Herzog
  • Marc Goddard
  • Mike Beltran
  • Mark Smith
  • Keith Peterson

Analyst of the Year

  • Paul Felder
  • Michael Bisping
  • Dan Hardy
  • Kenny Florian
  • Dominick Cruz

Personality of the Year

  • Laura Sanko
  • Daniel Cormier
  • Chael Sonnen
  • Joe Rogan
  • Jon Anik

Best MMA Programming

  • UFC Embedded
  • Dana White Contender Series
  • The MMA Hour
  • JRE MMA Show
  • Morning Kombat

Coach of the Year

  • Eugene Bareman
  • Eric Nicksick
  • Mike Brown
  • Henri Hooft
  • Diego Lima

Gym of the Year

  • City Kickboxing
  • Xtreme Couture
  • American Top Team
  • Kill Cliff (formerly Sanford MMA)
  • Fortis MMA

Trainer of the Year

  • Phil Daru
  • Jordan Sullivan
  • Andrew Wood
  • Heather Linden
  • Corey Peacock

Ringcard Girl of the Year

  • Brittney Palmer
  • Arianny Celeste
  • Luciana Andrade
  • Brooklyn Wren
  • Chrissy Blair

Fighting Spirit of the Year

  • Kevin Holland (Bravery - in and out of the cage, helping his community in the face of danger on several occasions)
  • Aaron Aby (Heart – surviving cancer and battling cystic fibrosis to become a top contender in Cage Warriors)
  • Bryce Mitchell (Charity – dedicating half of his UFC 272 fight purse to help children in medical need in his native Arkansas, with a special mention for Dana White who matched Mitchell’s contribution)
  • Alexander Volkanovski (Determination – demonstrating a champion’s will to overcome adversity and battling through a seemingly inescapable submission from Brian Ortega)
  • Robbie Lawler (Compassion vs. Nick Diaz – displaying true respect & genuine care for his opponent’s wellbeing in life)