Biggest boxing knockouts 2021, featuring Tyson Fury, Ryan Garcia, Callum Smith & Conor Benn


I think a lot of us will feel like we’ve been knocked out from the past few days, but not via the means of a punch – ours is self-inflicted from mass overindulgence over the festive period.

But 2021 has been a stellar year for boxing knockouts, with hard hits aplenty from some of the biggest names in the game.

So with this – let’s rank our favourites. Here is GiveMeSport’s top 10 boxing knockouts of 2021.

10) Efe Ajagba KO3 VS Sergey Brian Howard

We kick off our list with a man that certainly loves a knockout, and this one was pretty special.

The 2016 Nigerian Olympian and rising heavyweight Efe Ajagba made a huge statement as he knocked out Brian Howard in emphatic style in just the third round of the bout.

A swift right hand was enough to put Howard down to send the crowd into a state of ecstasy at a sold-out Osage Casino in Tulsa, Oklahoma back in April.

Watch this guy. He really is a beast, and I can almost guarantee this won’t be the last time he features on a list like this.

9) Troy Williamson KO10 VS Ted Cheeseman

In a battle for the super welterweight title back in October, Troy Williamson emerged victorious in Liverpool.

An electric fight that saw the two evenly matched throughout eventually came to an end in the 10th, with Cheeseman crashing onto the canvas following an onslaught of punches from Williamson, which concluded with a mean left hook to finish the job.

This fight was quickly waved off and there was some concern for Cheeseman after the devastating final blow, but thankfully the 26-year-old managed to get back on his feet.

It’s safe to say if I’d have been dealt this blow, I’d have been sleeping in the ring that night.

8) Ryan Garcia KO7 vs Luke Campbell

What a way to end the biggest fight of your career.

In this career-defining moment for Ryan Garcia, he managed to knock out Luke Campbell in the seventh round even after being knocked down by the Englishman in the second.

What I like about this knockout is the resilience ‘King Ry’ showed to pick himself up and dust himself off to dominate the match from there on in, eventually finishing in the seventh with a vicious body shot that sent Campbell packing.

With a mentor like Canelo Alvarez, it was always certain that the 22-year-old was destined for big things. So he’s certainly one to watch in 2022, with George Kambosos Jr, Devin Haney and Gervonta Davis looking like the next opponents on his hit list.

7) Conor Benn KO4 vs Chris Algieri

Conor Benn took a significant step up in the rankings in the welterweight division just a couple of weeks ago when he stopped American veteran Chris Algieri with what was a brutal knockout blow at the end of the fourth round.

Benn was disciplined throughout the bout but pounced on his victim in the fourth when Algieri looked like he was certainly struggling. He forced the American to the ropes, one quick left jab followed by a perfect right was more than enough to send Algieri plummeting face-first onto the canvas.

This knockout was poetry in motion. It almost looked like it was happening in slow motion. Certainly one of the finest performances in Benn’s career – that also featured one of his finest knockouts.

6) Mauricio Lara KO9 vs Josh Warrington

Certainly one of the surprise knockouts on the list.

An unbeaten Josh Warrington was left stunned after the first defeat of his career came via the means of a brutal left hand that sent the Leeds-born fighter toppling to the ground.

Warrington came in as a heavy favourite, but was soon humbled after an excellent display from Lara that actually saw him knock down Warrington twice in the nine-round bout.

The second blow was that bad that paramedics had to intervene and he eventually left the ring with an oxygen mask firmly planted to his face. A lesson for Warrington, who drastically underestimated his opponent and boy did he pay for it.

Since this bout in February, the pair have clashed again… literally. Warrington was desperate for revenge over the Mexican, but the rematch ended underwhelmingly when an accidental clash of heads meant the fight had to be stopped.

There’s no doubt Warrington will still want revenge, so this could be a potential fight we see again soon. Fingers crossed.

5) Kiko Martinez KO6 vs Kid Galahad

Another shock here, and yet another absolute corker of a knockout.

Kiko Martinez shocked Sheffield and the boxing world after defeating Kid Galahad in the sixth to become the IBF featherweight champion.

A wicked right hand that downed Galahad at the end of the fifth foreshadowed what was to come in the opening moments of the sixth. Martinez delivered an instant knockout that was almost comical.

A swift right – then goodnight! Galahad was down for good this time. This was a personal favourite for mine due to the abruptness of the blow. Blink and you’d miss it sort of stuff.

4) Gabriel Rosado KO3 vs Bektemir Melikuziev

What. A. Knockout.

For big fans of boxing, you’ll know that Gabriel Rosado doesn’t necessarily have the best of luck when it comes to his fights. He may have been saving it up for this absolutely monumental knockout against Uzbek boxer Bektemir Melikuziev.

Melikuziev was actually in control from the offset and it looked like Rosado couldn’t handle the power of the big man. Things were turned completely on their head in the third, however, when a delightful overhand counter from Rosado saw the 25-year-old eat canvas.

Melikuziev did make an attempt to get up but to no avail. The referee stopped the fight and the crowd roared knowing they’d seen one of the knockouts of the year.

3) Callum Smith KO2 vs Lenin Castillo

You know a knockout is bad when they have to carry them out on a stretcher.

On what was a fantastic night of boxing, Callum Smith knocked out Lenin Castillo in brutal fashion in just the second round at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium on the Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk undercard.

In what was actually quite a scary scene, Smith caught his opponent square on the chin – which saw Castillo collapse backwards and begin shaking on the floor.

The referee immediately intervened and waved it off, which allowed Castillo to receive the medical attention he so desperately needed. It was confirmed later that the 33-year-old was okay and he made a full recovery in hospital.

Despite the injury scare, undoubtedly a brilliant knockout. The power generated was absolutely astonishing.

2) Tyson Fury KO11 vs Deontay Wilder

One of the most eagerly anticipated fights of the year delivered one of the best knockouts, in typical Fury fashion.

A fight that became an instant classic, Fury successfully defended his WBC heavyweight title and ended the trilogy between the pair by sending a massively bulked-up Wilder plummeting onto to canvas in Las Vegas.

After a well-contested affair, the Gypsy King knocked down Wilder in the 10th, and when the American managed to get back up, you could sense the fight was destined for Fury to knock him out.

Wilder did last to midway through the 11th, but an expertly timed, powerful blow to the Bronze Bomber’s temple sent him packing – to Fury’s elation.

The enormity of this fight certainly adds to why this knockout is so high up, but take nothing away from it – it has every right to place second in this list.

1) Oscar Valdez KO10 vs Miguel Berchelt

Undisputed knockout of the year for me. The number one spot is claimed by Oscar Valdez, who sent fellow Mexican Miguel Berchelt packing to win the WBC lightweight title back in February.

Many expected this fight to be a back-and-forth bout, with the pair looking evenly matched on paper. What turned out to be was quite the opposite – with the violence being quite one-sided.

Valdez left Berchelt completely motionless on the canvas after a barrage of shots that ended with an epic left hook that instantaneously sent Berchelt to the ground.

Stressful and scary moments followed as paramedics attended to the Mexican’s somewhat lifeless body, which eventually ended in him being stretchered off and taken to the local trauma centre for precautionary measures. Fortunately, he left conscious and his condition didn’t worsen.



The biggest win of Valdez’s career and the biggest knockout blow of the year. Here’s to many more in 2022.

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