There are two things about MMA that really bother me. The first is how the UFC uses the phrase "co-main event", which is a total contradiction of the original term's meaning. The second is how quickly and haphazardly people throw around "Fight of the Year" to describe any bout that was exciting.
You can thank Steve Cofield for this rant, because he somehow thought Neer/Danzig was an "early Fight of the Year candidate". Since when is a one-sided clinic Fight of the Year material? I realize Cofield is a UFC company man, but even for him this is a stretch.
In general, people lose their minds when they see an action packed fight. They need to validate what they saw by claiming it was beyond exciting. It's perfectly fine to say, "Wow, that was an exciting fight." In fact, your friends will probably like you a lot more, if you're not the guy calling everything "the best".
With that in mind, I am hereby instituting the following "Fight of the Year" rules.
1. The fight has to have something large at stake. It can be a championship, a shot at a championship, a grudge match, a tournament bout, or even two older fighters going nuts for fifteen minutes because they know the loser is getting cut. The point is, something large has to be at stake.
2. During the bout, you must feel like both fighters are in imminent danger. There should be times when each is close to finishing the other.
Oh, and the UFC gave Cain Velasquez the "Knock-Out of the Night" bonus, despite the fact he did the exact opposite to Denis Stojnic.
"The world is upside-down and somebody's gotta turn it right-side up."