Kintamayama

Sumo articles by journalists who are Forum members/or not

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2 hours ago, Gaijingai said:

That was a good article with some very good points about health concerns. The constant theme throughout the article was that change needs to happen at the heya level. I haven’t followed sumo for very long. I’ve noticed that many of the oyakata seem, outwardly at least, not to be in the best health. So, I’m just pessimistic about any change in attitudes toward health within many of the heya. 

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12 hours ago, Gaijingai said:

Enjoyed the article but was surprised at this:

"That’s mostly a result of an open-door policy, where pretty much any Japanese male under the age of 23 who wants to become a rikishi can do so."

Is this true? I had always assumed that there was some sort of screening process to assess whether recruits have the potential to make it as a rikishi.

 

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1 hour ago, Kaninoyama said:

Enjoyed the article but was surprised at this:

"That’s mostly a result of an open-door policy, where pretty much any Japanese male under the age of 23 who wants to become a rikishi can do so."

Is this true? I had always assumed that there was some sort of screening process to assess whether recruits have the potential to make it as a rikishi.

 

The process seems to be mostly “Are you alive?”

Given Hattorizakura made it in, I assume they must check closely for a pulse to answer this as he shows no visible signs of life.

Edited by Eikokurai
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43 minutes ago, Eikokurai said:

The process seems to be mostly “Are you alive?”

Given Hattorizakura made it in, I assume they must check closely for a pulse to answer this as he shows no visible signs of life.

Jokes aside, although the article mentions that even the hapless rikishi are assets to the heya as what amounts to slave-labor, there are also costs involved in feeding and housing them. At what point does cost outweigh the benefit? 

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1 hour ago, Kaninoyama said:

Jokes aside, although the article mentions that even the hapless rikishi are assets to the heya as what amounts to slave-labor, there are also costs involved in feeding and housing them. At what point does cost outweigh the benefit? 

Several of our posters (including me) have asked what is the per-rikishi allowance the oyakata receives from the NSK.  Still mysterious (though whatever it is, I think it's been reduced by 10% due to these Difficult Times® ).

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7 hours ago, Kaninoyama said:

Jokes aside, although the article mentions that even the hapless rikishi are assets to the heya as what amounts to slave-labor, there are also costs involved in feeding and housing them. At what point does cost outweigh the benefit? 

It’s an interesting economics question. For someone like Hattorizakura who probably doesn’t eat much, there’s probably more value having him around for the housekeeping than not. For someone like Orora, who never earned a salary but consumed the food of four men every day, I can’t imagine what the benefit is. I suppose you can’t kick someone out for eating you out of pocket though.

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36 minutes ago, John Gunning said:

This basho preview was filed before the Tamanoi news broke.

" Terunofuji’s unexpected championship in the July tournament, saw him promoted all the way up into sumo’s top ten at maegashira 1 east.

That has led to a lot of handwringing online, with many fans expressing the view that it’s too big of a jump too soon, and that the resulting tough slate of opponents Terunofuji will face in the upcoming tournament should quickly end any hopes the ex-ozeki has of winning back to back titles and starting a run at his former rank."

Strange assessment, since a M1 faces exactly the same high-rankers as a M3 (or even M5 recently), which is where most GTB players have put Terunofuji. Besides, you can't win back to back titles outside of the meat grinder.

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"even if they take the final step and earn the white rope, we’ll have yokozuna akin to Asahifuji or Kakuryu at best."

 

"Geez, John, Kakuryu's standing right over there ... "

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2 hours ago, Yamanashi said:

"Geez, John, Kakuryu's standing right over there ... "

"Geez, Yamanashi, Asahifuji (Isegahama Oyakata) is sitting right over there..."

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1 hour ago, Amamaniac said:

"Geez, Yamanashi, Asahifuji (Isegahama Oyakata) is sitting right over there..."

Yeah, well, he's been out of the rikishi ranks for 30 years (and had the class to retire when he fell ill).  Kakuryu, who has finished 8 of his last 20 basho, is allegedly still active; John puts him in a sentence with another ex-Yokozuna, as if it's a "where are they now?" column.  Please understand, I have absolutely nothing against John, it just tells you how quickly  Kakuryu made it to the past tense.

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3 hours ago, Yamanashi said:

Yeah, well, he's been out of the rikishi ranks for 30 years (and had the class to retire when he fell ill).  Kakuryu, who has finished 8 of his last 20 basho, is allegedly still active

I don't know if having Hakuho around is setting a "bad" example for other yokozuna in terms of absences, because it feels like there's a lot more tolerance for yokozuna absences than there used to be. When Takanohana and Kisenosato are spoken about in terms of record-breaking withdrawals, you've got to wonder what the old thresholds for "compete or retire" were.

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16 hours ago, Amamaniac said:

Pardon my ignorance: does Kotoshoho have any genetic ties as well, or did you just mistake him for Kotonowaka?

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10 minutes ago, Jakusotsu said:

Pardon my ignorance: does Kotoshoho have any genetic ties as well, or did you just mistake him for Kotonowaka?

Are you asking me, or John?  That comes straight from John's article.

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11 minutes ago, Amamaniac said:

Are you asking me, or John?  That comes straight from John's article.

Of course I'm asking John. I thought that was clear, sorry.

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8 hours ago, Amamaniac said:

Don Orlowitz provides a "photo essay" glimpse at many of the sights and scenes at the KGK amidst the pandemic.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/photo-essay-sumo-basho-coronavirus/

Kind of eerie. These are strange times, indeed. The absent Yokozuna and all the other rikishi withdrawals must be compounding what must already be a somewhat diminished experience for those in attendance at the Kokugikan. Three days the fans have even missed seeing Ozeki fight because of fusen. That said, I’d still be there in a heartbeat if I was in Tokyo.

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2 hours ago, since_94 said:

Three days the fans have even missed seeing Ozeki fight because of fusen. That said, I’d still be there in a heartbeat if I was in Tokyo.

Can empathise. The one day I managed to catch live sumo, Enho won, but all four ozeki were kyujo, and Ichinojo beat Hakuho. Megabummer.

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