Mr. Olympia 2022: Final Results, Top Videos and Predictions for 2023 Event

Erik BeastonDecember 18, 2022

Mr. Olympia 2022: Final Results, Top Videos and Predictions for 2023 Event

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    Nick Walker was the Fan's Choice in Vegas but did he leave as Mr. Olympia?
    Nick Walker was the Fan's Choice in Vegas but did he leave as Mr. Olympia? Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    The 2022 Mr. Olympia is in the books, and to say it exceeded expectations would be an understatement, with the heavily favored Mamdouh "Big Ramy" Elssbiay failing to place in the top three and perennial runner-up Hadi Choopan finally ascending to the top of the bodybuilding world by winning the title that has consistently eluded him.

    The event also featured the arrival of several young contenders to the throne, with two fresh faces placing in the top five and shutting out some of the more familiar names.

    Find out who those competitors were and what their placement may mean for next year's event with this recap of the 2022 extravaganza.

Final Standings and Prize Money Payouts

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    1. Hadi Choopan ($400,000)
    2. Derek Lunsford ($150,000)
    3. Nick Walker ($100,000)
    4. Brandon Curry ($40,000)
    5. Mamdouh "Big Ramy" Elssbiay ($30,000) 

    Prize money payout information from Barbend.com.

Choopan Gets over the Hump and New Faces in High Places

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    After three years stuck in runner-up hell, Choopan captured the Sandow trophy, proving former champion Phil Heath right by being the man to knock Big Ramy off the pedestal.

    Adding size to what was already superb conditioning, Choopan was clearly the class of the field in this year's event, channeling the frustration of past disappointments into delivering his best performance to date.

    Coach Hany Rambod attributed Choopan's work ethic for his victory, while the winner, the first Asian, and Iranian-born, Mr. Olympia thanked fans for their support and dedicated his title to the women of his home country.

    Kian Sharifi @KianSharifi

    Hadi Choopan, who a couple of hours ago became the first Iranian to be named Mr Olympia, dedicated his medal to the women of Iran. <a href="https://t.co/2CZncjvKVt">https://t.co/2CZncjvKVt</a> <a href="https://t.co/wXOQI3XeIF">pic.twitter.com/wXOQI3XeIF</a>

    Elsewhere, Derek Lunsford made his first appearance in the open after competing in, and winning, the 212 a year ago. The newcomer did not compete at all in 2022, focusing his energy on performing his best in Mr. Olympia.

    Bodybuilding legend Ronnie Coleman had accurately predicted Lunsford to be a major threat to Big Ramy, and he was right.

    He finished as the first runner-up. Ironically enough, the winner, Choopan, also made the jump from the 212, where competitors cannot weigh more than that.

    GENERATION IRON @GenerationIron

    What a performance by Derek Lunsford #2 In Men's Open Olympia after moving up from 212. And Hadi the New MR O is also a former 212 competitor. What u guys think about that? <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/olympia212?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#olympia212</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/generationiron?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#generationiron</a> <a href="https://t.co/wDt2giqlF4">pic.twitter.com/wDt2giqlF4</a>

    Lunsford figures to be a major problem for his fellow competitors moving forward. It is almost unheard of to place as highly as he did and deliver that sort of show, in one's first appearance in the Olympia open.

    He is not the only one.

    GENERATION IRON @GenerationIron

    Nick Walker wins the People's Choice Award at the 2022 Olympia! Can he go on to take the Sandow trophy as well?<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NickWalker?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NickWalker</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Olympia2022?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Olympia2022</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/MrOlympia?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#MrOlympia</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/bodybuilding?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#bodybuilding</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/GenerationIron?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#GenerationIron</a> <a href="https://t.co/2YpWVlrLIw">pic.twitter.com/2YpWVlrLIw</a>

    Young phenom Nick Walker, uber confident in his abilities and not afraid to express it, earned the respect of the fans by winning the People's Choice award before finishing third in this year's competition.

    Walker is already popular but is still young and mastering the sport. His performance Saturday night should be very encouraging to both him and his fans.

    Was it the finish he would have hoped for? Probably not, but Choopan was a runaway locomotive with momentum on his side, hellbent on proving himself the elite bodybuilder he and so many insiders knew he was by capturing the cup.

    Walker finishing third sets him up for a future of high placings and signifies a potential changing of the guard in bodybuilding. Competitors like Brandon Curry, William Bonac and Big Ramy will always remain relevant and tough to beat because of their experience and discipline, but Walker and Lunsford represent a new generation ready to leap to the top.

What Does the 2023 Mr. Olympia Hold

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    COLUMBUS, OH - MARCH 07: Mamdouh "Big Ramy" Elssbiay (9) competes in the Arnold Classic as part of the Arnold Sports Festival on March 7, 2020, at the Greater Columbus Convention Center in Columbus, OH. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
    Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

    To suggest that Big Ramy, Cutler or Bonac are suddenly out of the picture because of their placing Saturday night in Las Vegas would be a mistake. You do not dominate the industry over a two-year stretch like Ramy, or consistently place among the top-tier competitors like Cutler or Bonac and just fall off because two younger competitors exploded onto the scene on the sport's grandest stage.

    Yes, Walker and Lunsford took the bodybuilding world by storm, but if they become complacent and do not maintain the discipline and conditioning that got there, any one of those veterans will humble them on a stage in New York, Pittsburgh or right back in Vegas.

    APcom - AntrenmanProgrami.com @Antrenmancom

    Nick Walker<br><br>📽 gilcoproductions<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/antrenman?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#antrenman</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/antrenmanprogrami?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#antrenmanprogrami</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/apcom?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#apcom</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/bodybuilding?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#bodybuilding</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/fitness?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#fitness</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/workout?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#workout</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/vucutgelistirme?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#vucutgelistirme</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/spor?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#spor</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/saglik?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#saglik</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/fit?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#fit</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/turkiye?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#turkiye</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Turkey?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Turkey</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/mrolympia?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#mrolympia</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/mrolympia2022?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#mrolympia2022</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/olympia22?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#olympia22</a> <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Olympia?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Olympia</a> <a href="https://t.co/fsPkMR2w7d">pic.twitter.com/fsPkMR2w7d</a>

    Choopan is a bit different in that he is one of those veterans and knows exactly what he has to do to remain at the top of his game. He knows the work and expectation that comes along with continued success in bodybuilding.

    What he does not know is the feeling of every eye in the industry looking at him now that he has won the top prize.

    Expect him to remain one of the most physically fit in the industry and a potential game-changer as others look to implement a conditioning-first, size-second philosophy.

    As for 2023, all three top finishers have to be considered favorites to win next year. Choopan will continue to set the standard for what the future of bodybuilding looks like while Walker and Lunsford look to further establish themselves as the future of the industry.

    But do not count out Cutler, who is quietly one of the very best in the business, or Ramy, who will look to avenge a disappointing fifth-place finish. The question is just how serious he is about retiring at age 38, which he will be prior to next year's event.


    Way Too Early Prediction

    The Sandow does not change hands often. There have only been 17 different Mr. Olympias since the event's inception in 1965. That favors Choopan, as long as he can keep the size that put him over the top this season.

    Lunsford made such an immediate impact, though, that it is difficult to see a scenario where he does anything but takes that next step toward domination.

    Lunsford wins in 2023, followed by a first runner-up spot for Choopan, who unluckily won his title at a time of great competition in the sport.

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