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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Farah Hannoun

UFC Hall of Famer Daniel Cormier reveals his 2023 MMA award winners

As the year comes to a close, UFC Hall of Famer and color commentator Daniel Cormier has revealed his 2023 MMA awards.

The year was full of incredible moments, which saw the crowning of seven new UFC champions, big upsets, thrilling fights, and devastating finishes.

During the most recent episode of ESPN’s “DC & RC,” Cormier handed out five awards plus a bonus one in his “Tap In or Tap Out” segment.

See below to find out Cormier’s picks for Male Fighter of the Year, Female Fighter of the Year, Fight of the Year, Knockout of the Year, Submission of the Year, and Upset of the Year.

Fight of the Year: Alexandre Pantoja def. Brandon Moreno at UFC 290

Jul 8, 2023; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Brandon Moreno (red gloves) fights Alexandre Pantoja (blue gloves) during UFC 290 at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Knockout of the Year: Josh Emmett def. Bryce Mitchell at UFC 296

Dec 16, 2023; Las Vegas, Nevada, USA; Josh Emmett (red gloves) reacts after knocking out Bryce Mitchell (blue gloves) during UFC 296 at T-Mobile Arena. Mandatory Credit: Stephen R. Sylvanie-USA TODAY Sports

Submission of the Year: Alexa Grasso def. Valentina Shevchenko at UFC 285

TOPSHOT – Mexico’s mixed martial arts fighter Alexa Grasso (bottom) fights Kyrgyzstan’s mixed martial arts fighter Valentina Shevchenko during their UFC 285 women’s flyweight title bout at T-Mobile Arena, in Las Vegas, Nevada, on March 4, 2023. (Photo by Patrick T. Fallon / AFP) (Photo by PATRICK T. FALLON/AFP via Getty Images)

Male Fighter of the Year: Islam Makhachev

Russia’s Islam Makhachev looks on before his Lightweight bout against Australia’s Alexander Volkanovski during the Ultimate Fighting Championship 294 (UFC) event at the Etihad Arena in Abu Dhabi on October 22, 2023. (Photo by Giuseppe CACACE / AFP) (Photo by GIUSEPPE CACACE/AFP via Getty Images)

Female Fighter of the Year: Erin Blanchfield and Zhang Weili

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – FEBRUARY 18: (R-L) Erin Blanchfield punches Jessica Andrade of Brazil in a flyweight fight during the UFC Fight Night event at UFC APEX on February 18, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – AUGUST 19: Zhang Weili of China celebrates after defeating Amanda Lemos during their Strawweight title fight at UFC 292 at TD Garden on August 19, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Paul Rutherford/Getty Images)

Upset of the Year: Sean Strickland def. Israel Adesanya at UFC 293

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – SEPTEMBER 10: Sean Strickland of United States celebrates victory over Israel Adesanya of Nigeria to become the new middleweight champion of the world during the UFC 293 event at Qudos Bank Arena on September 10, 2023 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)
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