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About RabidJohn

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  • Birthday 05/03/1963

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  1. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    There's probably a no-scarf clause on that document they made him sign...
  2. RabidJohn

    Shimekomi - silk mawashi news

    Even abbreviated it's a bugger to get right...
  3. RabidJohn

    Top 10 Sumo Records Aki 2021

    0-7 (or sometimes 8) is the worst outcome down there.
  4. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    The trouble with the word xenophobia is too many people automatically conflate it with racism. Sign of the times, I suppose, but it's really a spectrum with racism at one extreme and the kind of harmless nationalism represented by supporting a national sports team at the other. (And if you're thinking "but that's not irrational so it can't be a phobia", let me assure you that the hopes and expectations of the average English football fan during any major tournament are hopelessly irrational.) The NSK (and the YDC and the 'Oh' committee) wanting to preserve the 'Japaneseness' of ozumo does not lie on the racist side of the xenophobia spectrum IMO. I'm fine with one gaijin per heya and Japanese citizenship being a prerequisite for kabu eligibility in the same way that I'm fine with Champagne having to be made in the Champagne region. Hakuho is responsible for some very significant lapses in hinkaku over 14 years as yokozuna, and now is the time of reckoning. But I can't help it if I find some of the noises coming out of that reckoning a little distasteful - and I'm no snowflake.
  5. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    CBA to search for the relevant threads, but there was that committee whose report included not giving out any more ichidai-toshiyori. The same report also went on about foreign born rikishi not being suitable as elders (or words to that effect), which is irrationally xenophobic as there are several already doing a fine job within the NSK. Maybe it's just a coincidence that they didn't give Hakuho the ichidai-toshiyori, and it had nothing to do with the report, but I don't believe that. Which is not to say their experience with Takanohana had no bearing on the decision not to give Hakuho the ichidai-toshiyori, because it probably did.
  6. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    I keep seeing these references to Takanohana, but Hakuho came from pretty much nowt. As a scion of the 'great Hanada sumo dynasty', Takanohana had an unrealistic sense of entitlement. I don't believe Magaki-oyakata will ever manage to lower his profile to Musashigawa or Naruto levels, simply because he already has sekitori deshi, but they're good role models for him - at least until Shibatayama and the rest have retired.
  7. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    Ok, signing that bloody pledge then! My point is that none of this is knee-jerk decision making on Hakuho's part. If he wasn't committed to it, he wouldn't have gone for the Magaki kabu when Hakkaku informed him he wasn't getting an ichidai toshiyori. There are evidently pro- and anti-Hakuho factions within the NSK. The fact that his acquisition of Magaki has been approved, albeit conditionally, means the pro faction is in the ascendancy, which must give him some encouragement.
  8. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    Taking Japanese nationality with a view to becoming an oyakata is committing oneself in my book, especially when one could have retired back to Mongolia and never had to work again.
  9. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    Isn't that pretty much the case for every high-ranked rikishi who becomes an elder of the Kyokai? They all go from being one of the stars of the show at the top of the hierarchy to blue-overalled bouncers in the hanamichi at the bottom of their new hierarchy. That's a come-down for anyone. Yes, I find this pledge-signing business highly distasteful (rooted in xenophobia as it is), but I suspect that skinny 15-year-old Mongolian kid had much worse to deal with before he rose to become the GOAT. He managed that, so I'm certain he can take this. I'm certain, too, that the furore surrounding his retirement is nothing he didn't expect. He's also got Takanohana's very recent example to show he can't fight his way to the top of the Kyokai, and he's never come across to me as being dumb.
  10. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    Nothing wrong in making the most of what you've been given, nor unusual; most of the sensible rikishi seem to get involved in fan merch, so I'm assuming they get a worthwhile cut. Maybe I'm just a bit annoyed that the author found Tobizaru's golden goose of a shikona annoying...
  11. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    Ok, I stand to be wrong again, but it was my understanding that the shikona was bestowed by the oyakata.
  12. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    Apart from the line about Tobizaru, "who somewhat annoyingly brands himself 'The Flying Monkey'"... A jarring bit of crashing ignorance in an otherwise well informed piece. --- I have to agree that the way this long-expected news broke all over the media before any official intai announcement is unusual, to say the least. That the NSK has been dragging its collective heels because it can't afford to pay Hakuho off hadn't occurred to me before, but it fits with what we've seen of the organisation's lack of ability when dealing with unprecedented situations.
  13. RabidJohn

    Terunofuji is the 73rd Yokozuna.

    No, I want to see a larger sample of his basho as a yokozuna before drawing any conclusions. On the face of it, his bouts as a tsunatori ozeki and yokozuna take longer than they did before. Yes, that could be because his focus has shifted from wanting to win to not wanting to lose, or maybe Isegahama has told him the NSK expects a longer show from their yokozuna, or maybe it's just a blip and he'll return to a sub-10s average. I just want to take a longer term view, as old hands on this forum are wont to tell me I should.
  14. RabidJohn

    Terunofuji is the 73rd Yokozuna.

    His opponents are becoming harder to beat as they become accustomed to his style? I really want to see a larger sample size...
  15. RabidJohn

    Hakuho retires

    I've been assuming that (if all goes well), he'll switch with Miyagino when the latter retires at 65. Now I'm wondering if he'll see busting another 'curse' as a challenge and keep Magaki. --- I'm glad I came back to sumo in time to see Hakuho in action, even though it was after his truly dominant period. I acknowledge him as the GOAT while also seeing his undoubted flaws. I'm with ybf (above): he wouldn't be so divisive if he hadn't been so bloody good. Yeah, it's the end of an era, but I'm not sad about it. I'm looking forward to the future, mainly in terms of what occurs on the dohyo, but also the what effect Hakuho has as an elder of the NSK.