To say 2020 was kinda crazy is to state the obvious to the point of trivializing what was an unprecedented year of chaos, upheaval, crisis and death on a monumental and global scale. And yet, despite the protests and riots, despite the political unrest and uncertainty, and despite a highly contagious and deadly virus, amazingly, professional boxing carried on. As Larry Merchant famously said, nothing can save boxing and nothing can kill it. The way pugilism responded to the events of 2020 lends credence to the latter part of that statement. Boxing is like cockroaches; it just keeps surviving.
And so, while the temptation was strong to throw in the towel and decide an abbreviated year with less action and fewer competitive match-ups maybe doesn’t deserve scrutiny or awards, we decided at the last minute to go the other route and give credit where credit is due for the athletes who did answer the bell, often before rows of empty seats.
So, time to take stock with our six categories and highlight the best fights and fighters, the biggest surprises, and the stand-out performances. Check out the nominations below. Our winners will be announced in the days to come. Let’s get to it!