10 Best MMA Knockouts from the 1st Half of 2014

Dan Hiergesell@DHiergesellFeatured ColumnistJuly 1, 2014

10 Best MMA Knockouts from the 1st Half of 2014

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    Victor Fraile/Getty Images

    Everybody loves a good knockout.

    Your best friend, your grandmother, your dentist, everyone.

    But there are different degrees of knockouts.

    From split-second front kicks to thunderous overhand rights, knockouts come in all shapes and sizes. That's what makes them so savory.

    Here are the 10 best from the first half of 2014. Enjoy.

Honorable Mention: Tae Hyun Bang over Kajan Johnson

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    What's a list of knockouts without "The Korean Cowboy"?

    As one of the hardest-hitting lightweights you're going to find, Tae Hyun Bang nearly decapitated Kajan Johnson at UFC 174.

    The finish earned the Korean Fight of the Night and Performance of the Night honors, proving that it's never good to have one of your kicks caught.

10. Andrey Koreshkov over Justin Baesman

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    In dynamic fashion, 23-year-old Russian sensation Andrey Koreshkov delivered an outstanding flying knee to the chin of Justin Baesman at Bellator 118.

    Not only did Koreshkov secure the memorable knockout, but he did so after a barrage of strikes, including a spinning wheel kick.

    It was his 13th career finish and another instance of how dangerous the welterweight can be.

9. Donald Cerrone over Adriano Martins

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    USA TODAY Sports

    With kickboxing for days, Donald Cerrone is capable of ending any fight with one quick strike.

    As a fighter who no longer loses the mental battle that every competitor encounters, Cerrone's raw talent has been in full force of late.

    UFC on Fox 10 was no different, as "The Cowboy" left Brazilian Adriano Martins defeated as a result of a devastating head kick.

8. Anthony Johnson over Mike Kyle

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    Anthony Johnson has always had power, but he's recently displayed that natural knockout skill set at the light heavyweight level.

    Unfortunately for veteran Mike Kyle, Johnson's power was in full effect back at WSOF 8.

    With one swift right hook to the back of the ear, he left Kyle sprawled out on the cage floor.

7. Alexander Volkov over Siala-Mou Siliga

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    Despite the fact that Alexander Volkov was facing a 43-year-old kickboxer, his head-kick knockout still stands as one of the best finishes of 2014 thus far.

    The strike landed as flush as any other technique on this list and dropped "Mighty Mo" quicker than seven sacks of potatoes.

    I guess it's true what they say: "The bigger they are, the harder they fall."

6. Roy Nelson over Antonio 'Minotauro' Nogueira

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    It seems like Roy Nelson always makes the cut when it comes to a list like this.

    He's just that good at knocking guys silly.

    For "Big Country," it's a skill set that comes naturally, which is why he's able to fall back on it so often.

    It took only four minutes for him to display that natural power opposite MMA legend Antonio "Minotauro" Nogueira at UFC Fight Night 39 in Abu Dhabi.

5. Brian Rogers over Adrian Miles

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    This is my personal favorite so far this year, but I'm not going to crown it king based on my own fetish for flying knees.

    In any case, Brian Rogers delivered a beautiful knee to the chops of an unsuspecting Adrian Miles at Bellator 119.

    The fact that Rogers faked with the right knee and then landed as Miles circled out speaks levels as to how well-rounded his striking has become.

4. Abel Trujillo over Jamie Varner

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    Tim Larsen/Associated Press

    In one of the very best back-and-forth affairs of the year thus far, lightweight juggernaut Abel Trujillo delivered a lights-out blow to the chin of veteran gamer Jamie Varner.

    The two waged war for what had seemed like an eternity, but it was "Killa" who gritted his teeth longer and secured the knockout blow.

    His second-round finish practically saved UFC 169's decision-filled card.

3. Dong Hyun Kim over John Hathaway

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    Dong Hyun Kim continues to prove why he's one of the most underrated fighters in MMA right now.

    Fresh off his impressive finish over evolving welterweight prospect Erick Silva, the 32-year-old leveled challenger John Hathaway with a gorgeous spinning back elbow in Macau, China, at UFC Fight Night in March.

    It remains one of the cleanest finishes of 2014 and one that capped off Kim's first time as a headliner.

2. TJ Dillashaw over Renan Barao

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    USA TODAY Sports

    With more at stake than all of these fights combined, TJ Dillashaw's finish over Renan Barao at UFC 173 commands extra respect.

    Was it the most vicious knockout we've seen thus far?

    No, but it delivered the biggest divisional shock wave in recent memory.

    So in that sense, his fifth-round scrapping of a pound-for-pound finalist should top this list.

1. Ryan Ford over Joel Powell

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    Apologies for the grainy video.

    I guess there were no camera crews north of the border at WSOF Canada.

    In any case, this is one of the best knockouts you're ever going to see (or not, depending on how big your computer screen is).

    With one of the toughest techniques in MMA to pull off, Ryan Ford finished Joel Powell with a perfect front kick—the sort of shot that sends you back to third grade.

    And for that, Ford commands the No. 1 spot for the first half of 2014.

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