Terukuni

Next Yokozuna??????

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5 hours ago, sekitori said:

Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent injury by performing "right sumo". That's because "right sumo" which theoretically should prevent injury, doesn't exist. It doesn't really take much for a rikishi to twist a knee more than expected, not protect his back properly when encountering large strong opponents, fall the wrong way, and undergo many other mishaps.  Sumo may be the ultimate atheltic activity having to do with bodily contact and injury is part of the game. 

Almost every rikishi gets hurt, although Kyokutenho seems to be one of the rare exceptions. While he had a  long and successful career and even won a yusho, because of his style which kept him from being badly injured, he was never a threat to reach the highest ranks. When people talk about future yokozunas, ozekis, etc., they refer to rikishis who have excellent tecnique and use it to its ultimate efffect. There is a very fine line between doing that and going just beyond what the human body can tolerate.

 The degree to which a rikishi is injured and how well he recovers can spell the difference between great success and mediocrity. There are two very simple words to bear in mind concerning any potentially outstanding rikishi. Those words are "barring injury". 

I think speculating who will be the next Yokozuna is a fun exercise, but actually predicting who will be next to wear the rope is an exercise in futility.  I learned my lesson.  I truly thought that Terunofuji would be the next Yokozuna.  I just KNEW he was the one!  And I KNEW it would happen in the next 18 months!  But then tragedy struck.  And no amount of wishful thinking can ever undo the reality of what happened to him, and my dream of him being the next Yokozuna.

The last paragraph of the above quote really hit home with me.    Three very powerful sentences.  Any one of the rikishi mentioned as possible Yokozuna contenders could be seriously, even irreparably , injured, at any time .  And not just on the Dohyo.  In training, during a Jungyo, even while out celebrating.  Not one of these contenders is invincible.  Not a single one .  And I suppose that is part of what makes sumo so compelling.  The odds are so stacked against any one of them being able to avoid or overcome injury and make it to the very top that when a rikishi actually succeeds in becoming a Yokozuna, he is indeed god-like.

I remember the day I met Hakuho during the Aki Basho in Sept 2014.  At his Heya, the moment he walked in to begin his training session, his friend, who later introduced us, whispered to me, "He's like a god!!".  And indeed he was.

Oh, I just received a notification that Kintamayama commented on the thread, "Terunofuji's Health Problems".  One more reminder that a top contender to become a Yokozuna will never realize his dream.

But dreams give us hope for the future.  Not everyone's dream of becoming a Yokozuna will be dashed.  Someone or several someones will realize their dream.  Some may not even have a Shikona yet!

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6 hours ago, sekitori said:

"right sumo" which theoretically should prevent injury, doesn't exist. It doesn't really take much for a rikishi to twist a knee more than expected, not protect his back properly when encountering large strong opponents, fall the wrong way, and undergo many other mishaps. 

It does exist. It consists of 2 parts:

Don't do the wrong sumo, that which invites injury: like Ura, Enho or Tochinoshin - don't try to win at all costs, if you can't win with the "right" sumo that your body is equipped to do. Of course in order to reach the highest ranks, a bit of overdoing is necessary, with high risk for medium injury - you simply mustn't overdo the overdoing: that's the way to avoid severe injury which puts you out of contention for 2 basho or more BEFORE you reach yokozuna. Not only Kyokutenho, Hakuho and Tamawashi and plenty of others fit into that category. Kisenosato was in that category, but in order to (unnecessarily) get that 2nd yusho right as new yokozuna, he overdid the overdoing.

The other thing is what all the oyakata keep telling: do the basics, build up your body slowly and profound. Build your body to perfect a few techniques that will win you 80% of all bouts and master the right defenses against most techniques.

Asanoyama in my view has the potential to be diligent enough to succeed like this - in maybe 3 years. And all the other prospects now seem unable to me to break through to the top.

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3 minutes ago, Akinomaki said:

It does exist. It consists of 2 parts:

Don't do the wrong sumo, that which invites injury: like Ura, Enho or Tochinoshin - don't try to win at all costs, if you can't win with the "right" sumo that your body is equipped to do. Of course in order to reach the highest ranks, a bit of overdoing is necessary, with high risk for medium injury - you simply mustn't overdo the overdoing: that's the way to avoid severe injury which puts you out of contention for 2 basho or more BEFORE you reach yokozuna. Not only Kyokutenho, Hakuho and Tamawashi and plenty of others fit into that category. Kisenosato was in that category, but in order to (unnecessarily) get that 2nd yusho right as new yokozuna, he overdid the overdoing.

The other thing is what all the oyakata keep telling: do the basics, build up your body slowly and profound. Build your body to perfect a few techniques that will win you 80% of all bouts and master the right defenses against most techniques.

Asanoyama in my view has the potential to be diligent enough to succeed like this - in maybe 3 years. And all the other prospects now seem unable to me to break through to the top.

Unfortunately, if Ichinojo lands on you, no amount of "right sumo" is going to make a difference!  You're toast!

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Tomokaze. Shiraishi, if his shoulder isn't permanently damaged.

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14 minutes ago, sumojoann said:

Unfortunately, if Ichinojo lands on you, no amount of "right sumo" is going to make a difference!  You're toast!

If you do the right sumo, you'll be out (of the way) before Ichinojo will crush you

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Akinomaki said:

It does exist. It consists of 2 parts:

Don't do the wrong sumo, that which invites injury: like Ura, Enho or Tochinoshin - don't try to win at all costs, if you can't win with the "right" sumo that your body is equipped to do. Of course in order to reach the highest ranks, a bit of overdoing is necessary, with high risk for medium injury - you simply mustn't overdo the overdoing: that's the way to avoid severe injury which puts you out of contention for 2 basho or more BEFORE you reach yokozuna. Not only Kyokutenho, Hakuho and Tamawashi and plenty of others fit into that category. Kisenosato was in that category, but in order to (unnecessarily) get that 2nd yusho right as new yokozuna, he overdid the overdoing.

The other thing is what all the oyakata keep telling: do the basics, build up your body slowly and profound. Build your body to perfect a few techniques that will win you 80% of all bouts and master the right defenses against most techniques.

Asanoyama in my view has the potential to be diligent enough to succeed like this - in maybe 3 years. And all the other prospects now seem unable to me to break through to the top.

Talk of "right" sumo takes us perilously close to "unmotivated" sumo, and all that it entails...

Edited by Otokonoyama

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10 hours ago, Terukuni said:

Wajima was the first one, right?

First and only one so far.

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4 hours ago, RabidJohn said:

D'oh! Double post...

Can you not delete your posts?

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Right now it's a matter of when Hakahou retires..IMO... Mitakiumi and Takayasu may then make it 

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Posted (edited)
On 13/08/2019 at 22:56, Akinomaki said:

It does exist. It consists of 2 parts:

Don't do the wrong sumo, that which invites injury: like Ura, Enho or Tochinoshin - don't try to win at all costs, if you can't win with the "right" sumo that your body is equipped to do. Of course in order to reach the highest ranks, a bit of overdoing is necessary, with high risk for medium injury - you simply mustn't overdo the overdoing: that's the way to avoid severe injury which puts you out of contention for 2 basho or more BEFORE you reach yokozuna. Not only Kyokutenho, Hakuho and Tamawashi and plenty of others fit into that category. Kisenosato was in that category, but in order to (unnecessarily) get that 2nd yusho right as new yokozuna, he overdid the overdoing.

 

 

On 14/08/2019 at 00:18, Otokonoyama said:

Talk of "right" sumo takes us perilously close to "unmotivated" sumo, and all that it entails...

"Right" sumo to me means winining without allowing yourself to be badly injured--or injured at all. I guess that with enough talent, that can be done--very, very occasionally. Two examples are Kyokutenho and Tamawashi. They have had long and successful careers--but how successful? Exactly one yusho apiece. Hakuho definitely does not fit into that category. You don't win 42 yushos practicing sumo which keeps you from getting injured. 

To be an outstanding rikishi, a bit of overdoing won't do it. A lot of overdoing may. The difference between risk for mild or medium injury and that same risk for severe injury really isn't very much. An achilles tendon may be strained but under the same circumstances, it could be ruptured. Huge difference. The same thing goes for a twisted knee and a torn ACL. Unfortunately, the rikishi has absolutely no input as to the degree of injury he may encounter. 

I doubt very much if Takakeisho's advisors will tell him to do the same kind of sumo but to take it a bit easier so that he can avoid further injury. His stock in trade is a relentless pushing attack that if done correctly, should blast his opponent off the dohyo. To have him attenuate that style in the cause of self-preservation could harm a possibly extremely successful future. 

I wouldn't exactly call "right" sumo as being unmotivated. Every rikishi is motivated to win. But some of them are also motivated to keep from getting hurt. That may keep them around for a longer time, but the price they pay will be the lack of real success. If you don't take some big chances, you probably won't do very well. 

 

Edited by sekitori

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, yohcun said:

Takayasu's chance hasn't yet passed. He was on the yusho path in Nagoya before that kotenage, I could feel it in my bones.

Asasnoyama and Tomokaze seem like good well-rounded candidates, but I always hesitate to hype university rikishi that highly.

Yeah. University Yokozuna almost never make it to Yokozuna. For all I know, 71 of the 72 rikishi who made it to Yokozuna were not University Yokozuna. However, with sumo, you almost never know what can happen.

For example: We all know that Kotomitsuki was a university yokozuna. Where did he end up? He was an average-ozeki. Then, there was this 14-year old boy who came from a fishing town, where did he end up? He ended up being a dai-yokozuna, won 31 championships, and he was Chiyonofuji.

Edited by Terukuni

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Posted (edited)

As to those saying Tomokaze, well, I don't see anything in his results that would make him any different that Mitakeumi, Hokutofuji, or Shodai.  That can easily change, but he's not nearly as dominating as someone who's ready to march straight through to Ozeki in a year of making the joi and Yokozuna within a year of that like Wajima (or Hakuho).  Of course, Wajima didn't seem that dominating either until he actually was, so who knows?

Edited by Gurowake

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Posted (edited)

Really nothing different than Shodai? The guy who stands up straight like he's taking a free throw at tachiai??

Edited by Tsuchinoninjin
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Posted (edited)
4 minutes ago, Tsuchinoninjin said:

Really nothing different than Shodai? The guy who stands up straight like he's taking a free throw at tachiai??

Results-wise.  I don't engage in any attempt to quantify how good people are at Sumo besides how well they've done in the past.

Edited by Gurowake

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16 minutes ago, Gurowake said:

Results-wise.  I don't engage in any attempt to quantify how good people are at Sumo besides how well they've done in the past.

I mean, the physical motion during the honbasho is a result of their training, it seems pretty important to consider.

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On 13/08/2019 at 19:09, Yamanashi said:

Takayasu has great stamina for a big man, and he's often energetic.  Did he pick up bad habits from Kisenosato, who took a long time to get to Yokozuna?

Tochinoshin's first injury should have killed his career; the fact that he's where he is seems miraculous.  I don't think he has enough time left.

It is now or never for both if they have any inspirations to become a Yokozuna.   Takayasu is 29 years old, still in male physical prime.   Tochinoshin is 31 years old when injuries and human nature take control of his body.   Of the two, Takayasu has the better chance IMO.   Sudden intai by Hak and Kak would set things up nicely for Takayasu.   

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17 hours ago, Eikokurai said:

Can you not delete your posts?

Hmm, you can. 

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I'm not going to say Ichinōjo to not jinx my big baby boy...(Dohyo-iri...)

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Hattorizakura.

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This post may well come back to bite me, but I don't really get the current Tomokaze > future yokozuna hype. He's got excellent dohyo sense, as well as a decently varied offense (at least in the sense that he's not just "Plan A"), but he does seem to require relying on superior timing a lot, and his physical tools are nothing special IMHO. I don't feel that's going to play any better than Mitakeumi's skill set at the sanyaku level, and if anything I think it's going to play worse.

(Of course, I said very similar things back when he was in upper makushita, so he wouldn't be outperforming my expectations for the first time...) 

As for "if Asanoyama and Tomokaze get more muscle" and similar comments - the sad truth is the ex-collegiates are often close to the finished article physically, with only small incremental gains being made after their debuts. One thing people tend to overlook: The universities are very much not a development circuit. The coaches' primary goal there is to get the most out of their rikishi while they're part of the club, not to lay the best possible foundations for future pro careers.

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Whoever becomes the next Yokozuna, it will probably boil down (in part) to being in the right place at the right time.  Being in the right place in my mind is related to being healthy and being near the top of the banzuke (i.e., in a position to win two consecutive yusho).  And at the right time refers to when Hakuho calls it a day.  In my mind, the odds of seeing another Yokozuna promotion before Hakuho retires are somewhat slim.  Hakuho probably has a year and a half left in his active career, or let's say 8 more tournaments.  With the current state of the Makuuchi ranks, a breakthrough within that time (with Hakuho there to still take home a yusho or two) seems unlikely.  But Hakuho's departure will create a real vacuum!

Someone like Takakeisho could make an early bid, but his recent injury seems serious enough that it may slow his particular bid to be the next Yokozuna.

But I am with Akinomaki.  Asanoyama seems to be developing nicely under the same guidance that got Asashoryu to become the 68th Yokozuna.  In my eyes, he fits the right-place-right-time criteria.

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1 hour ago, Asashosakari said:

This post may well come back to bite me, but I don't really get the current Tomokaze > future yokozuna hype. He's got excellent dohyo sense, as well as a decently varied offense (at least in the sense that he's not just "Plan A"), but he does seem to require relying on superior timing a lot, and his physical tools are nothing special IMHO. I don't feel that's going to play any better than Mitakeumi's skill set at the sanyaku level, and if anything I think it's going to play worse.

(Of course, I said very similar things back when he was in upper makushita, so he wouldn't be outperforming my expectations for the first time...) 

As for "if Asanoyama and Tomokaze get more muscle" and similar comments - the sad truth is the ex-collegiates are often close to the finished article physically, with only small incremental gains being made after their debuts. One thing people tend to overlook: The universities are very much not a development circuit. The coaches' primary goal there is to get the most out of their rikishi while they're part of the club, not to lay the best possible foundations for future pro careers.

Basically, why I think he is a good candidate is that he hasn't had a massive injury yet.

To get two back to back yusho, you first have to be in two back to back basho.

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2 hours ago, Amamaniac said:

Asanoyama seems to be developing nicely under the same guidance that got Asashoryu to become the 68th Yokozuna.

This might be the very first time somebody has insinuated that Asashoryu became the standout rikishi he was because of ex-Asashio (he of "spends most of morning keiko reading the newspaper"), rather than in spite of him...

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Posted (edited)
On 15/08/2019 at 14:38, Sue said:

Hattorizakura.

YES, WHY DID I NOT THINK OF THAT???

Edited by Terukuni

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Like 1991-1992, when the yokozuna retired, a large vacuum was created. Takahanada then came into spotlight, along with Akebono. Those two men then created a new era, and led it. I'm sure the same thing will happen when Hakuho and Kakuryu call it quits. In fact, we may have another no yokozuna era. This will set the stage for a new yokozuna to take charge. However, there really is no "big contender" at the moment (Takanohana and Hakuho are perfect examples of this), it's gonna be wide open for some time.

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