2015 Boxing Awards

2015 Boxing Awards

Welcome to our 2015 Boxing Awards!

Here are the categories:

Boxer of the Year
Fight of the Year
Breakout Star
Big Things in 2016

Participating in the 2015 FGB Awards – Boxing edition are FGB writers Duan, GG, and Alex Goff as well as Robert Silva from the World Championship Boxing podcast.

We’ve also listed previous winners for the first time.

Boxer of the Year

Duan: Canelo Alvarez
With the spectacular knockout of James Kirkland and his biggest career win over Miguel Cotto, this was for me, the year Canelo became the star HBO and Golden Boy wanted him to be. There’s a truckload of fresh match ups for him at 160 so Alvarez’s toughest challenges may still lie ahead.

Duan’s previous winners:
2014: Sergey Kovalev
2013: Timothy Bradley
2012: Carl Froch
2011: Andre Ward
2010: Sergio Martinez
2009: Amir Khan
2008: Manny Pacquiao

Alex: Floyd Mayweather
Floyd Mayweather did it. While everyone else fought boxers, he fought a myth, which may be harder to do. Everyone has looked for the guy to beat Floyd and everyone believed Manny Pacquiao to be the one. Just like all the others, Manny could not figure out the riddle that is Floyd’s style. Floyd is the best boxer I’ve ever seen in my life time and it looks as if his competition in a different sport altogether. Floyd dispatching Manny in the way he did, killed the myth of Floyd as a beatable fighter. While other undefeated fighter will always have names haunt them that may have given them challenge, it’s hard to have that conversation about Floyd.

Alex’s previous winners:
2014: Sergey Kovalev

Robert: Canelo Alvarez
In a year where we saw the decline of Manny Pacquiao, the end of Vladimir Klitschco and the ensuing retirement of Floyd Mayweather, a new, big star emerged: Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. 2015 was finally the year in which Canelo took the proverbial baton and ran with it. A week after Mayweather’s one-sided victory over a badly faded and one-armed Pacquaio, Canelo destroyed slugger James Kirkland in three exhilarating rounds. Then, just last month, he overpowered and out worked the lineal Middleweight champion of the world, Miguel Cotto to claim the title. No other boxer this year had a more meaningful or significant victory. 2016 promises to be the year Alvarez faces Golovkin to determine the true king of the 160 pound division. A fascinating match up of two men with almost identical styles, the winner will no doubt be the front runner for 2016 fighter of the year.

Robert’s previous winners:
2014: Sergey Kovalev
2013: Danny Garcia

GG: Gennady Golovkin
I was haggling between Triple G and Canelo. Both had tremendous years. Canelo received most everyone’s pick because of how he beat Miguel Cotto to end the year. Cotto was definitively the top opponent for either guy. But at this point in his career, Canelo was supposed to beat the smaller Cotto and he did. Was it convincingly? I think so. Was it impressive? Maybe not as much as you’d hope for the next big thing. Did it make me think he could beat Golovkin? Not yet. On the other hand, Golovkin knocked out Martin Murray, Willie Monroe, Jr., and David Lemieux. You can flip a coin for either guy. I’m going with Triple G.

GG’s previous winners:
2014: Sergey Kovalev
2013: Floyd Mayweather
2012: Nonito Donaire
2011: Andre Ward
2010: Sergio Martinez
2009: Manny Pacquiao
2008: Manny Pacquiao

Fight Of The Year

Duan: Dave Ryan Vs John Wayne Hibbert 2 – May 30, 2015
Another reminder that the best fights don’t always come in the most high-profile bouts. Take two guys evenly matched and put a title they care about on the line and you have the makings of a classic. This one gave you knockdowns, momentum shifts, late drama and a come from behind finish – everything I love about a good boxing match.

Duan’s previous winners:
2014: Tommy Coyle vs Daniel Brizuela
2013: Timothy Bradley vs Ruslan Provodnikov
2012: Brandon Rios vs Mike Alvarado
2011: Erik Morales vs Marcos Maidana
2010: Mikkel Kessler vs Carl Froch
2009: Bernard Dunne vs Ricardo Cordoba
2008: Tie between Antonio Margarito vs Miguel Cotto and Steve Cunningham vs Tomasz Adamek

Alex: Ruslan Provodnikov Vs Lucas Matthysse – April 18, 2015
This was a violent fight – a spectacle that would make a fan of the sport cringe given the amount of punishment both men took. The result may be that both men won’t be the same, and the immediate result was Ruslan urinating blood for his drug test. These two men’s styles seem to complement each other perfectly for brutality. Fighting shouldn’t be compared to war, but this fight shouldn’t be compared to average boxing matches.

Alex’s previous winners:
2014: Carl Froch Vs George Groves 2

Robert: Krzysztof Glowacki Vs Marco Huck – August 14, 2015
In a year filled with many great fights, in my opinion, the best fight of 2015 was Krzysztof Glowacki’s scintillating, come from behind 11th round knockout of Marco Huck on August 14. In a fight in which Glowacki was knocked down in the sixth and was outclassed the first half of the fight, he showed amazing grit and determination. He began out-punching and out-slugging the long time reigning champion, culminating in dropping Huck twice in the 11th and stopping him. A must see fight; one that is on par with past Cruiserweight classics like Holyfiekd-Qawi I and Toney-Jirov.

Robert’s previous winners:
2014: Lucas Matthysse vs John Molina
2013: Timothy Bradley vs Ruslan Provodnikov

GG: Francisco Vargas Vs Takashi Miura – November 21, 2015
This fight was on the undercard of Canelo vs Cotto and at the point that this fight was taking place, I think we were all getting restless and wanted to see the main event. That’s part of the problem with high level boxing cards. When you attract the casual fan, the casual fan can get really bored watching guys they’ve never heard about and don’t care for. I was very thankful for this fight. It was a back and forth classic that left all the people watching who didn’t care about these guys, heavily invested and cheering. That’s what the undercard is for.

GG’s previous winners:
2014: Terence Crawford vs Yuriorkis Gamboa
2013: Timothy Bradley vs Ruslan Provodnikov
2012: Juan Manuel Marquez vs Manny Pacquiao IV
2011: Juan Manuel Marquez vs Manny Pacquiao III
2010: Amir Khan vs Marcos Maidana
2009: Juan Diaz vs Juan Manuel Marquez
2008: Antonio Margarito vs Miguel Cotto

Breakout Star

Duan: Tyson Fury
Who else could it really be? Fury ended one of the most dominant runs in heavyweight boxing history when most didn’t give him a chance. After years of trying to talk his way into a money fight, he showed he had the abilities to back up the words and he now stands as the holder of the most prestigious prize in boxing’s long lineage.

Duan’s previous winners:
2014: Carl Frampton

Alex: Roman Gonzalez
He was on every hardcore fan’s radar, but HBO picking up two of his fights thrusted him into the spotlight. Chocolatito right now is the cake in need of a frosting to make up a big show, but 2016 he may be able to carry shows on his own on HBO.

Alex’s previous winners:
2014: Gennady Golovkin

Robert: Deontay Wilder
2015 began with Wilder giving WBC Heavyweight champion Bermane Stiverne a 12 round beating, easily winning the title. With Klitschko losing to Tyson Fury last month, it opens the door for Wilder to begin a new era in boxing. Fury doesn’t stand a chance against him and Klitschko is done, leaving only British Gold Medalist and rising star Anthony Joshua as the only man standing in the way of Wilder becoming the next, great heavyweight.

Robert’s previous winners:
2014: Nicholas Walters

GG: Roman Gonzalez
These are all terrific picks and I could’ve gone with either of the three we chose. Even though Wilder and Fury are in the more prestigious division, I think Gonzalez is the best fighter. HBO has his back and Jim Lampley has him as his number one pound for pound fighter in the world.

GG’s previous winners:
2014: Terence Crawford

Big Things in 2016

Duan: Callum Smith
Callum is the best of the four Smith brothers and that’s saying something because they can all fight. His one round blowout of local rival Rocky Fielding in November showed that it’s come time for bigger and better things for the 25 year old. With countryman James DeGale holding the IBF belt, and George Groves and Martin Murray in the title mix as well, there are huge fights out there for Smith in the next 12 months. He will be Carl Froch’s successor as Britain premier super middleweight.

Duan’s previous winners:
2014: Anthony Joshua
2013: Vasyl Lomachenko
2012: Khalid Yafai
2011: Canelo Alvarez
2010: Carl Frampton

Alex: Terence Crawford
Terence Crawford had an amazing 2014 and then an amazing 2015. I expect Terrence to fully fly in 2016. He will be across from at least one bigger name opponent in 2016 and threaten to be considered one of the best in the sport. Terence’s ability to rise to every occasion makes him worth watching. I look forward watching his 2016 campaign.

Alex’s previous winners:
2014: Deontay Wilder

Robert: Errol Spence
With the retirement of Floyd Mayweather, the 147 pound division has a gap that needs to be filled. There are several excellent fighters in that division, including Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia. In my opinion, Errol Spence has the ability and talent to beat both these fighters and begin his ascent to the top of the welterweight division. 2016 will be the year he begins his journey as the next, great welterweight; a division traditionally rich when it comes to great fighters.

Robert’s previous winners:
2014: Roman Gonzalez
2013: Keith Thurman

GG: Anthony Joshua
Even though this was Duan’s pick for this same award last year, I think he’s still in need of a true breakout. He won a big fight to close out 2015 against Dillian Whyte, avenging a loss as an amateur. All in all, he went 5-0 on the year with four out of the five fights lasting three rounds or less. I hope to see him on US TV soon.

GG’s previous winners:
2014: Nicholas Walters
2013: Ruslan Provodnikov
2012: Floyd Mayweather’s record (predicting Mayweather would lose in 2013)
2011: Miguel Cotto
2010: Amir Khan

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