Amamaniac

Are Abi's days numbered?

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I didn't know about Taganoura when I posted above. I was expecting a slap on the wrist, but maybe not. The NSK seems to be the kind of organization that punishes the second guy harder than the first. I still doubt they'll boot him, though. I do expect them to hit him where it seems it will hurt him most, by suspending him long enough to drop in rank and pay. He'll get it back but hopefully it also gets his attention.

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Posted (edited)

Interestingly enough, back on July 16, Chris Gould released a vlog in which he reports on the newly wed Abi.  In Chris' words, his bride "may well be the driving force behind his perfect record of winning scores last year, and certainly set him straight on his behaviour off the dohyo." 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h61r5syqj50

Abi did indeed have an outstanding year in 2019, spending the last three tournaments at East Komusubi 1!  But perhaps things were not going quite as rosy in 2020, what with two MK performances which dropped him down to East Maegashira 5.  There were some cute interviews with Abi (this tournament) in which he reveals that his new wife has been encouraging him to eat more vegetables and salad (i.e., a healthy diet).  But evidently, his wife had not managed to set him all that straight after all. I am sure she was trying her best, but Abi is a free spirit, and that's why so many fans love him.

Edited by Amamaniac

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Hmmm. An oyakata repeatedly beats rikishi and is demoted. I take Covid-19 very seriously - I wear a mask, socially distance, don't eat out, and minimize outside contact - I don't visit anyone inside or have anyone inside my house other than immediate family. Still, expulsion seems too great. He's already been pulled out of more than half this basho. A one basho suspension will drop him to lower Juryo. A two basho suspension will drop him to what - high single digits makushita? A suspension seems more appropriate to me, especially as I view an oyakata who beats rikishi (which is a criminal assault) as more harmful to sumo (who is going to let their son join an organization that tolerates this behavior) as more damaging to sumo. 

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5 hours ago, ScreechingOwl said:

A suspension seems more appropriate to me, especially as I view an oyakata who beats rikishi (which is a criminal assault) as more harmful to sumo (who is going to let their son join an organization that tolerates this behavior) as more damaging to sumo. 

Except that it's very hard to sell that viewpoint to a culture which is a lot less squeamish about whacking kids than Europeans/Americans.

The Japanese emphasise collective benefit far more than individual benefit. So a lot of the rage over Tagonoura and Abi is not about getting themselves sick, it's about getting everyone else (whom the NSK is trying to protect) sick, and their being selfish is seen as a bigger sin than getting caught beating deshi.

Whereas beating a deshi or two certainly doesn't have that same kind of scale, and from the NSK's viewpoint, I'm fairly certain that they are not going on a root-and-branch effort to wipe out the occasional whacking...

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Posted (edited)

is there any reason they couldn't demote him outside the normal ranking process? Just drop him down the banzuke farther than one would expect for his (mostly non-) performance this basho?

Edited by Churaumi
banzuke is too a word, phone!

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1 hour ago, Churaumi said:

is there any reason they couldn't demote him outside the normal ranking process? Just drop him down the banquet farther than one would expect for his (mostly non-) performance this basho?

I definitely see it as a possibility that they'll decide to demote him to Juryo after this tournament as part of the punishment.  They may even go with a two-basho suspension forcing his demotion to Makushita after next tournament, which means he'd get the long drop from being absent in Makushita, meaning he'd need at least two tournaments to get back even if perfect.

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On 02/08/2020 at 01:10, Gurowake said:

I definitely see it as a possibility that they'll decide to demote him to Juryo after this tournament as part of the punishment. 

I don't think that ever happened before. There were borderline demotions that made sense numbers-wise with a stretch, but I highly doubt a 3-12 from M5 will drop him to Juryo. 

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1 hour ago, Kintamayama said:

I don't think that ever happened before. There were borderline demotions that made sense numbers-wise with a stretch, but I highly doubt a 3-12 from M5 will drop him to Juryo. 

Now that I've done my GTB, I agree with you.  I thought it was much closer than it actually was.

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There are at least 6 rikishi who should clearly be ranked below him. And it's not clear what altering the banzuke accomplishes that a suspension (à la Nagoya 2010) doesn't.

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On 29/07/2020 at 14:25, Eikokurai said:

Osuunarashi was expelled for driving (albeit he caused an accident and didn’t have a license)

The other detail in the Oozunaarashi scandal was IIRC that after the accident, he tried to to avoid getting charged by having his wife switch to the driver's seat.  Therein was a case in which the wrestler was in a sense lying about his actions.

On 30/07/2020 at 02:50, Kishinoyama said:

 If he lied about the details of what happened then that is ominous. This appears to be the case. The NSK does not like to be lied to.

It would be interesting to know more about how Japanese society views lying in the family context, school context, and business context (let's leave politics out of it). ;-)

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14 hours ago, Kintamayama said:

I don't think that ever happened before. There were borderline demotions that made sense numbers-wise with a stretch, but I highly doubt a 3-12 from M5 will drop him to Juryo. 

If they do, it will be punishment. I can't really remember them directly punishing a rikishi that way, just indirectly by suspending them.

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Posted (edited)
24 minutes ago, Churaumi said:

If they do, it will be punishment. I can't really remember them directly punishing a rikishi that way, just indirectly by suspending them.

Agreed. I do remember , though, personally feeling a certain rikishi kept getting the shorter end of the stick time and again when the Banzuke was released. And there was that Oosunaarashi thing that we still cannot talk about. July 2016. Coming off a 13-2 JY and a 9-6.  Suddenly doesn't appear from day 1 in July for no given reason other than "injury", gets demoted from M3 to Juryo 1. Three bashos before that, he was kyujo from M5, and dropped to Juryo 1 the basho after. Some thought that after July he was over-demoted for reasons that had nothing to do with the dohyo-more personal stuff.

 

Edited by Kintamayama
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Shukan post mentions that those from the heya with Abi were kyujo from day 1 on, so with Seiro and Terao intai, these are Irodori and Teraosho. http://sumodb.sumogames.de/Query.aspx?show_form=0&heya=79&form1_wins=0&form1_year=2020&form1_month=7

We'll see if there are more punishments than just for Abi and the oyakata.

Abi was seen on drinking tour in Kinshi-cho (perfect naming: sounds like forbidden), near the heya, for some 3 days in a row, going into his favorite hostess bar, with other rikishi and what looked like tanimachi. Someone posted it as SNS "Story" (to disappear in 24 hours), the NSK noticed and it reached Shikoroyama-oyakata.

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19 minutes ago, Akinomaki said:

Abi was seen on drinking tour in Kinshi-cho (perfect naming: sounds like forbidden), near the heya, for some 3 days in a row, going into his favorite hostess bar, with other rikishi and what looked like tanimachi. Someone posted it as SNS "Story" (to disappear in 24 hours), the NSK noticed and it reached Shikoroyama-oyakata.

Kinshicho is like my second home, I've spent about a year and a half there. It's right next to Ryogoku, the area where the Kokugikan and many sumo stables are located. You can regularly see wrestlers on the street there. It doesn't have a great reputation, but a place like that grows on you after a while.

Wish we had that Instagram story, I'm curious if I could recognize the place (probably not, there are about a million), although I only go to hostess clubs when my friends drag me there.

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1 hour ago, dada78641 said:

Kinshicho is like my second home, I've spent about a year and a half there. It's right next to Ryogoku, the area where the Kokugikan and many sumo stables are located. You can regularly see wrestlers on the street there. It doesn't have a great reputation, but a place like that grows on you after a while.

Wish we had that Instagram story, I'm curious if I could recognize the place (probably not, there are about a million), although I only go to hostess clubs when my friends drag me there.

... and sometimes you have to hire friends to drag you there?

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Posted (edited)
6 hours ago, Akinomaki said:

Shukan post mentions that those from the heya with Abi were kyujo from day 1 on, so with Seiro and Terao intai, these are Irodori and Teraosho. http://sumodb.sumogames.de/Query.aspx?show_form=0&heya=79&form1_wins=0&form1_year=2020&form1_month=7

We'll see if there are more punishments than just for Abi and the oyakata.

Abi was seen on drinking tour in Kinshi-cho (perfect naming: sounds like forbidden), near the heya, for some 3 days in a row, going into his favorite hostess bar, with other rikishi and what looked like tanimachi. Someone posted it as SNS "Story" (to disappear in 24 hours), the NSK noticed and it reached Shikoroyama-oyakata.

The same Shukan article mentions that Abi's behaviour angered many of his fellow wrestlers, including Yokozuna Hakuho.  It was suggested that if Hakuho and Abi get matched in a bout again, Abi should expect a stiff kachiage forearm blast!

Edited by Amamaniac
Edited to better reflect article

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The Kyokai will discuss his (and the others') punishment on August 6th, this Thursday.

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1 hour ago, Amamaniac said:

The same Shukan article mentions that Abi's behaviour angered many of his fellow wrestlers.  Even Hakuho apparently suggested that if he and Abi get matched in a bout again, Abi can expect a stiff kachiage forearm blast!

To clarify, one of the younger oyakata said Hakuho was angry, and the kachiage was a suggestion by the writer, not Hakuho.

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Posted (edited)

The Nikkan Sports article states the rikishi who accompanied Abi was a former sekitori. His oyakata has submitted an informal resignation (shintai-ukagai) for him; the rijikai will decide whether to recommend intai.

Edited by Kamitsuumi
The other rikishi turned out to be not in the same stable; I had assumed it was Irodori
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Posted (edited)
30 minutes ago, robnplunder said:

But by handing in his retirement papers, isn't there a chance that they won't be accepted?  Or is that not how it works for rikishi?

Edited by sumojoann

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25 minutes ago, sumojoann said:

But by handing in his retirement papers, isn't there a chance that they won't be accepted?

That thought occurred to me.   I hope Abi stays on.  

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Posted (edited)

I think he would not hand them in unless he had been told he had no other option. The article says they will not be acted upon until the JSA meeting on the 6th, but clearly he had a good idea as to what the likely outcome of that meeting was.

Edited by ryafuji

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