It’s a new year, so Combat Press is taking a look back at the best of MMA in 2017. Throughout the next few weeks, Combat Press will announce its award winners in multiple categories, covering everything from the action in the cage to the biggest stories surrounding the sport.
2017 was another crazy year for the MMA world. Stars fell, new ones were born, and upsets took center stage to help shape the year. But, for the Combat Press “Story of the Year,” we have to jump to another combat sport: boxing. Yes, we chose a story so big that it not only became the biggest story of the year in combat sports, but helped take over sports airwaves nationwide. It became bigger than the sports from which it was spawned.
When Conor McGregor first announced he wanted to take on perhaps the greatest boxer in history, Floyd Mayweather Jr., many dismissed McGregor’s idea as wildly far-fetched. However, over time and with constant barbs, McGregor pulled off the unbelievable. He was able to get a fight with the undefeated, multi-title-winning boxer. The buildup to the fight in press conferences drew numerous eyeballs and the wide attention of the press. The fight helped pull McGregor even further into the mainstream eye with interview after interview of the UFC lightweight champion appearing all over the place, including media outlets that normally don’t cover MMA.
Of the fights in 2017, Mayweather/McGregor takes the cake as the most watched and most anticipated match of the year. The fight grew from nothing to become one of the biggest spectacles in the history of combat sports. McGregor, MMA’s biggest superstar, may not be done, despite a stoppage loss to Mayweather. The outspoken MMA superstar might look to add another big-name fight in 2018 to compete for next year’s “Story of The Year.”
Other finalist: Jon Jones fails yet another drug test
Make sure you check out the rest of the Combat Press 2017 MMA Award winners.