World Boxing News provides a list of this year’s boxing award winners following the crowning of Oleksandr Usyk as Fighter of the Year.
Usyk took the top honor for his professionalism in leaving his war-torn homeland of Ukraine after fighting alongside forces on the frontline.
The unified heavyweight champion defeated Anthony Joshua with relative ease for the second time, causing the former British titleholder to have a tantrum at the end of the Saudi Arabia contest.
Receiving the trophy in London on the day Tyson Fury beat Derek Chisora, Usyk is now set to battle “The Gypsy King” for all the belts.
Women’s Fighter of the Year for 2022 goes to record-breaker Claressa Shields. The American superstar traveled to the United Kingdom for the most significant female fight in history and came out on top.
Shields and Savannah Marshall made history by topping the first all-women’s card at the O2 Arena in London. The undisputed clash was subsequently a contender for Fight of the Year.
WBN Fight of the Year 2022
The Fight of the Year Award goes to Leigh Wood vs Michael Conlan, a barnstorming encounter in Nottingham in the UK.
This featherweight bout produced one of the most stunning comebacks potentially ever seen in a boxing ring.
Defending champion Wood was dropped by Conlan in the opening round of the fight and was comfortably outclassed for the remainder of the fight.
That was until the eleventh round. Despite being hurt for most of the fight, Wood, staring down an almost certain loss via the scorecards, fought back to drop Conlan and give himself a lifeline in the final round.
A frantic finish followed. With a still dazed Conlan fighting to see out the fight and a beaten-up Wood throwing everything at the Irishman.
Wood finally found the punch he needed. He dramatically sent Conlan flying through the ropes to snatch a win from the jaws of death.
Jesse ‘Bam’ Rodriguez takes young Fighter of the Year after a twelve-month breakthrough. Three stunning victories over top names pushed Rodriguez into the mix for the top Award taken by Usyk.
Devin Haney gets Pound for Pound Breakthrough on the back of becoming undisputed at lightweight and cracking the P4P Top 10. Two wins over George Kambosos Jr. secured Haney as the top dog at 135 pounds.
Stoppage of 2022 sees Wood’s halting of Conlan gain a double honor.
WBN Trainer of the Year
Trainer of the Year is Derrick James for his efforts in adding world titles to the already solid records of P4P Top 10 placers Errol Spence Jr. and Jermell Charlo.
James is becoming one of the most accomplished and respected coaches in our sport year after year.
The former king of boxing Canelo Alvarez wins Comeback of 2022 in his response to losing against Dmitry Bivol last May.
Canelo found it challenging to figure out the talented Russian and was beaten by a canter in a stunning Las Vegas development.
Dusting himself down, Canelo dominated two-time opponent Gennadiy Golovkin just four months later. He retained his super middleweight crown.
WBN’s World title prospect of 2023 goes to Sebastian Fundora. “The Towering Inferno” was close to winning the Fight of the Year nod for his battle with Erickson Lubin.
A world championship should be on the cards for the lanky Fundora in 2023.
Finally, Upset of 2022 is the honor of Bivol. Despite being an accomplished world champion in his own right, Bivol’s win was not part of the Canelo script.
Bivol made it look far more straightforward than it was as he joined only Floyd Mayweather in defeating the talented Mexican future Hall of Famer.
World Boxing News Awards 2022
WBN Fighter of the Year: Oleksandr Usyk
Women’s Fighter of the Year: Claressa Shields
WBN Fight of the Year: Leigh Wood vs Michael Conlan
WBN Young Fighter of the Year (23 under): Jesse Rodriguez
Pound for Pound Breakthrough: Devin Haney
Stoppage of 2022: Leigh Wood vs Michael Conlan
Trainer of the Year: Derrick James
Boxing Comeback of 2022: Canelo Alvarez
World title prospect of 2023: Sebastian Fundora
Upset of 2022: Dmitry Bivol vs Canelo Alvarez