SUBMISSION OF THE YEAR: Dustin Hazelett vs. Josh Burkman at UFC TUF 7 Finale
I wish the UFC employed an English play-by-play man just to hear him give Dustin Hazelett's arm bar submission over Josh Burkman the description it rightly deserves - brilliant.
The submission puts the beauty and simplicity of fundamental Brazilian jiu-jitsu on display. One needs not know a myriad of techniques to effectively apply the discipline. Hazelett's end product, an arm bar, is just that, an arm bar. The most basic of maneuvers taught to students within their first week of classes.
It's the setup to the finish that deserves all the credit. Burkman works for a takedown from the clinch, but Hazelett nullifies it with a textbook whizzer. Hazelett then, with equal parts ingenuity and athleticism, jumps into the air, performs a half jumping somersault, and wraps his leg around Burkman's head. When the action hits the floor, Hazelett crank away and gets the tap.
Outrageously, Hazelett scored another submission of the year candidates with a modified arm bar over Tamdan McCrory at UFC 91. The only thing separating him from Japan's Shinya Aoki is a mountain man beard and super happy rainbow pants.
2nd PLACE: Shinya Aoki vs. Katsuhiko Nagata at DREAM 4
3rd PLACE: Fedor Emelianenko vs. Tim Sylvia at Afflication: Banned