With another action-packed month of MMA in the books, MMA Junkie looks at the best knockouts from December 2020: Here are the five nominees, listed in chronological order, and winner of MMA Junkie’s “Knockout of the Month” award for December.

At the bottom of the post, let us know if we got it right by voting for your choice.

Ilia Topuria def. Damon Jackson at UFC on ESPN 19

Ilia Topuria (10-0 MMA, 2-0 UFC) continued the perfect start to his career with a sizzling combination on Damon Jackson (18-4-1 MMA, 1-2-1 UFC) in their featherweight bout.

In what his most high-profile win to date, Topuria took out veteran Jackson in the first-round, courtesy of some devastating hands. The 23-year-old attacked Jackson to the body, then followed it up with a savage head shot for the highlight-reel finish.

Jordan Leavitt def. Matt Wiman at UFC on ESPN 19

Jordan Leavitt (8-0 MMA, 1-0 UFC) earned one of the top five fastest finishes by a debuting lightweight in UFC history against Matt Wiman.

“The Monkey King” picked up a 22-second slam knockout of veteran Wiman. It was a short and sweet night for Leavitt; Wiman had standing guard on Leavitt, was carried across the octagon and slammed. It turned into a scary scene as Wiman, whose head bounced off the mat when he was slammed, was out for several minutes before finally sitting up.

Cub Swanson def. Daniel Pineda at UFC 256

After taking 14 months off to recover from ACL surgery, Cub Swanson (27-11 MMA, 12-7 UFC) made an emphatic comeback to the cage against Daniel Pineda (27-14 MMA, 4-5 UFC) in their featherweight matchup.

Pineda came out of the jump fighting strong and putting some effective aggression on Swanson. He pushed too hard and started to make mistakes, though, and the veteran Swanson capitalized as he connected on a huge shot that dropped Pineda, then landed one more for good measure to get the second-round knockout.

Kevin Holland def. Ronaldo Souza at UFC 256

Kevin Holland (21-5 MMA, 7-2 UFC) produced one of the most spectacular and creative finishes in UFC history against perennial middleweight contender Ronaldo Souza (26-9 MMA, 9-6 UFC).

Just when it seemed Holland might be in danger against “Jacare” on the mat early in the first, he flipped the script and fired off a pair of powerful punches from his back. Souza was badly hurt, then Holland closed the show with a massive final shot to end the fight.

Rob Font def. Marlon Moraes at UFC Fight Night 183

After a year away from the cage, Rob Font (18-4 MMA, 8-3 UFC) returned to the bantamweight picture with a bang against former title challenger and WSOF champ Marlon Moraes (23-8-1 MMA, 5-4 UFC).

Font brutalized Moraes en route to a violent first-round finish. After he ate a combination, Font found the mark with a variety of punches – especially his jab, which stunned Moraes multiple times. Moraes absorbed a tremendous amount of damage before the referee stopped it.

The winner: Kevin Holland

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Holland’s ridiculous fighting pace this year paid off in the form of UFC history and his biggest win to date against Souza.

Holland became just the third fighter in UFC history to go 5-0 in a calendar year when he beat perennial contender “Jacare” by first-round knockout, courtesy of some wild strikes from bottom to set up the finish.

Only two others in modern UFC history have hit the 5-0 mark in a calendar year. Neil Magny did it in 2014, taking 266 days to accomplish the feat. Roger Huerta’s run in 2007 took 308 days. Holland blew both out of the water, getting all his wins in a 210-day stretch.

Holland came out swinging with a big overhand, but his aggression led to a quick takedown from Souza. Holland was aggressive from his back, throwing hard elbows and attacking with submissions. Souza was happy to engage in the grappling and from top.

The pair engaged in some loud talk, then Holland did something remarkable, landing some big shots from the bottom that stunned Souza. Then Holland stood up and landed savage punches to fold Souza backward on his knees to finish it at the 1:45 mark of Round 1.

Now on the biggest upward trajectory of his career, Holland’s five-fight UFC winning streak at 185 pounds is good for second best in the division, trailing only champion Israel Adesanya, who is current on a nine-fight winning streak in the weight class.

The victory put him in the running for “Fighter of the Year,” and while it remains to be seen if he gets that, he has one award with the “Knockout of the Month.”