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kuroimori

Promotion/Demotion discussion Natsu 2013

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(if the mods would prefer this to be elsewhere ... feel free to do with it whatever you find appropriate)

Since there's no Chamber of Horrors subforum, we'll leave it here. B-)

Sheesh, the guy tying the mawashi must have been stronger than Kaio!

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He's probably a nice guy (and btw my first and only semi-adoptee), he might collect little china vases with floral themes. Maybe he has curious interests, like revelling in Bolivian beat poetry.

But anyhow, his look somehow always implies that for the processes of his sensory input the distinction edible/non-edible might be pivotal (with the variation of my food/between me and my food, possibly).

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i don't seem to learn and i am continuing to post irrelevant pics here .... does anyone recognise the rest of the gang in that poster?

at least he looks like he could be a rikishi nowdays ....

DSCF8074.jpg

not them ... but you never know

DSCF8076.jpg

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I think this is the most appropriate place to state one doubt of mine...

I don't know how to explain it without practical exampling, so I'll do it.

There's a Rikishi A from a lower division - goes on to a great start and is on a 5-0 and a yusho fighting spot. However, he falls on the last hurdles and ends up 5-2.
Then there's Rikishi B who is close to A on the banzuke. He starts awfully and goes 0-2. However, he picks his game up and eventually goes on a winning streak to the end until his score finishes a 5-2.

My question; are they viewed equally on promotion matters? Or does Rikishi A have some priority on his climb up the ranks because he was among the frontrunners for a longer time thus having to face supposedly more competitive opponents? It would be deserved.

I haven't followed sumo for that long.. I know banzuke-making is mostly mathematical but there's a human element to it. I just don't know to what extent exactly.

Edited by Koorifuu

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My question; are they viewed equally on promotion matters? Or does Rikishi A have some priority on his climb up the ranks because he was among the frontrunners for a longer time thus having to face supposedly more competitive opponents? It would be deserved.

I haven't followed sumo for that long either, but based on observation I'd say that what matters are the numbers. A quick query on the sumodb will show you that ( and also how the same record can be have a different value depending on who is making the banzuke).

Random example. A 8-7 record yielded some big promotions back in the late 90's and early 00's, specially to fill the upper maegashira spots. Now it seldom does as demotions are handled more conservatively. (That's my impression).

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I think this is the most appropriate place to state one doubt of mine...

I don't know how to explain it without practical exampling, so I'll do it.

There's a Rikishi A from a lower division - goes on to a great start and is on a 5-0 and a yusho fighting spot. However, he falls on the last hurdles and ends up 5-2.

Then there's Rikishi B who is close to A on the banzuke. He starts awfully and goes 0-2. However, he picks his game up and eventually goes on a winning streak to the end until his score finishes a 5-2.

My question; are they viewed equally on promotion matters? Or does Rikishi A have some priority on his climb up the ranks because he was among the frontrunners for a longer time thus having to face supposedly more competitive opponents? It would be deserved.

I haven't followed sumo for that long.. I know banzuke-making is mostly mathematical but there's a human element to it. I just don't know to what extent exactly.

In 99% of the cases the circumstances that resulted in the score count for nothing when making the banzuke, only the current position, the score, and the scores of everyone else. In very, very few cases, when the committee has to choose between mathematically identical scores, it might make a bit of a difference, but that is very far from the normal case. In fact other outside parameters (like if it is a rikishi's first promotion, or his past career or even if he is his heya's only sekitori) seem to play more factor as tie breakers than the opponents faced...

It is also true that different committees across the years have treated similar situations differently, either favoring promotions over demotions, or vice versa. However, to the best of my knowledge, the opponents a rikishi fought to get a particular score (or if he got some fusenso wins) don't count for anything.

Besides, the circumstantial nature of bout scheduling is an integral part of sumo. I seriously doubt for example if Kyokutenho would have managed to win his yusho if he had not started from a 2-3 losing score. In that way, he got relatively easier pairings compared to some other maegashira who had better scores, and thus ended up getting the yusho... Still, in the end, all that counted was that he had a 12-3, and not who it was against.

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There's a Rikishi A from a lower division - goes on to a great start and is on a 5-0 and a yusho fighting spot. However, he falls on the last hurdles and ends up 5-2.

Then there's Rikishi B who is close to A on the banzuke. He starts awfully and goes 0-2. However, he picks his game up and eventually goes on a winning streak to the end until his score finishes a 5-2.

My question; are they viewed equally on promotion matters? Or does Rikishi A have some priority on his climb up the ranks because he was among the frontrunners for a longer time thus having to face supposedly more competitive opponents? It would be deserved.

I haven't followed sumo for that long.. I know banzuke-making is mostly mathematical but there's a human element to it. I just don't know to what extent exactly.

I don't think anybody knows that extent, perhaps not even the involved oyakata. ;-) The problem is that there are so many possible influences - does a rikishi have his own shisho on the banzuke committee, did the committee perhaps think somebody was especially unlucky in some loss or lucky in some win, do they have some special approach to banzuke-making when the solution isn't obvious?* Or to take your 5-0 -> 5-2 example - the rank differences between the two opponents get pretty large at that point, maybe the 5-0 guy faced opponents from 15 ranks lower and lost anyway? And it's not limited just to second-week bouts either - do you reward the poor guys who had to face Amuru early in the tournament for no reason other than being ranked near him? It gets nearly impossible to keep track of everything that might matter if they really wanted to consider such things.

So based on that, all in all my impression is that these various details don't play enough of a role to make a serious difference...whether some rikishi goes Ms38 5-2 -> Ms26 or -> Ms24 due to potential committee goodwill barely matters in the end, after all. And I would say even if such effects are there, they're swamped out by the overall approach taken by the committee, which varies over time.** (And sometimes even from one basho to the next, making me wonder if the banzuke work on the lower divisions is split into several "sub-committees" who do sections autonomously and rotate.)

* Say, you have a group of three 3-4's and a group of three 4-3's who ought to slot into roughly the same banzuke area. Do you go 3-4 / 3-4 / 3-4 / 4-3 / 4-3 / 4-3 (or the other way around) to get things over quickly, or do you go 3-4 / 4-3 / 3-4 / 4-3 / 3-4 / 4-3 to be more fair? (And, is it really more fair?) Could mean a difference of at least a couple of ranks in real-life scenarios where 2-5's and 5-2's might also be competing over those same spots and make it yet more complicated.

** One major effect especially in makushita (besides the obvious one: KK's vs MK's) is caused by the question of how to value 5-2's compared to 4-3's. There could be several schools of thought - should a 5-2 be worth three times as much because the W-L differential is three times as high? Should it be worth twice as much because 4-3 is the "first" KK record and 5-2 is the second one? Or do you go all analytical on it and consider how much more difficult it is to go 5-2 than 4-3, which would make a 5-2 only about 67% worth more?

In real-life terms that question boils down to what you do when there's a lot of space (many retirements, etc.) or very little space to fill. Let's say the "normal" promotions in a given area are 6 ranks for 4-3 and 12 ranks for 5-2. If there's a lot of room, do you give equal boosts and make it 10 ranks for 4-3 and 16 ranks for 5-2 (+4 for everyone), or do you try to keep the relative value the same and make it 9 and 18 ranks (same 1:2 ratio)? Do you perhaps even believe that if there's banzuke luck to be had, 4-3's don't really deserve any of it and the promotions end up being 7 and 20 ranks? It's all been done at various points in the past, and because of that it becomes nearly impossible to spot cases where one rikishi might have specifically been treated well or badly.

What can be said is that the promotions for 7-0 and 6-1 and the demotions for 0-0-7 and 0-7 are pretty well set. (With the ironic result that 6-1's tend to get almost no extra boost even when 5-2's and 4-3's do.)

Edited by Asashosakari
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Apropos Akiseyama, something I randomly noticed in the glossary just now:

hanmi-shikiri, way of crouching to tachiai so that the other leg is slightly further away from the shikiri-sen; amongst others moto-yokozuna Tochinishiki used to do this, usually considered a habit of technically brilliant rikishi

Indeed.

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Looks like Sagatsukasa, Kizenryu and Akiseyama will go down too, with 5 promotions to Juryo + Sokokurai

I think either Sagatsukasa or Kizenryu is going to get to stay, most likely Kizenryu. The addition of Sokokurai to makuuchi means that only four juryo will go up while five makuuchi are relegated. (At least that's what I see happening.) Since five makuuchi rikishi are going down, and the JSA has announced that five makushita rikishi are being promoted, obviously five juryo rikishi will have to be relegated too. Chiyoo, Kitaharima and Kimurayama are clearly deserved demotions. Akiseyama at J13 East and 7-8 is almost certain to be a tough luck relegation to M1 East. The fifth relegation then has to be either Sagatsukasa (I hope, although I have my doubts) or Kizenryu. Enjoyable and excellent commentary by Asashosakari throughout this thread, as usual.

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And I guess it's Takanoiwa who will remain in Juryo because of Sokokurai.

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Looks like Sagatsukasa, Kizenryu and Akiseyama will go down too, with 5 promotions to Juryo + Sokokurai

I think either Sagatsukasa or Kizenryu is going to get to stay, most likely Kizenryu. The addition of Sokokurai to makuuchi means that only four juryo will go up while five makuuchi are relegated. (At least that's what I see happening.) Since five makuuchi rikishi are going down, and the JSA has announced that five makushita rikishi are being promoted, obviously five juryo rikishi will have to be relegated too. Chiyoo, Kitaharima and Kimurayama are clearly deserved demotions. Akiseyama at J13 East and 7-8 is almost certain to be a tough luck relegation to M1 East. The fifth relegation then has to be either Sagatsukasa (I hope, although I have my doubts) or Kizenryu. Enjoyable and excellent commentary by Asashosakari throughout this thread, as usual.

Don't they need six demotions to cover the five promotees plus the extra makuuchi demotee? As I understand it only one of the seven (Chiyoo, Kitaharima, Kimurayama, Akiseyama, Chiyoarashi, Kizenryu and Sagatsukasa) gets to stay...

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And I guess it's Takanoiwa who will remain in Juryo because of Sokokurai.

That might have happened regardless, the guy deprived of a Nagoya makuuchi rank could be Kyokushuho or Chiyootori.

Don't they need six demotions to cover the five promotees plus the extra makuuchi demotee?

Correct. Edited by Asashosakari

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Thanks to everyone who gave me ellucidative and elaborate responses!

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