Kintamayama

March basho 2021

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Posted (edited)
23 hours ago, Karasukurai said:

It’s been interesting reading the comments (and jokes/jibes) about the current crop of Ozeki not being up to scratch. Whether the criticism is entirely fair, I’ll leave that for others to hammer out.

Many much brighter minds than me have already shared their views regarding those who've held or hold the elite rank of Ozeki.  At the risk of stirring the pot, let me weigh in on the issue from a purely numeric viewpoint.  If anything, sumo is one of the greatest sports for sports buffs, since there is so much room for statistical analysis.

I've decided to limit this survey to the period from January 2019 to January 2021.  I will also focus on those wrestlers who've held the rank during that time period and their "performances" during that time period alone.  I am working on the assumption that grumblings about Ozeki unworthiness have been louder in the last two years than before that.

Let's start by looking at average wins as an Ozeki:  Goeido 7.5 wins/tournament; Takayasu 7.9 wins/tournament; Tochinoshin 5 wins/tournament; Takakeisho 7.2 wins/tournament; Asanoyama 8.5 wins/tournament; and Shoudai 7 wins/per tournament.  On paper, Ozeki are expected to win 10 bouts every tournament.  It is painfully clear that none of the recent representative have been able to live up to those expectations.

Of course, I am including "decline phases leading to demotion or intai" for the simple fact that from the point of view of ticket-holding sumo fans, there is a basic expectation that if a wrestler's name appears on the banzuke as an Ozeki, he is expected to fulfil the expectations of that rank.  If someone is injured and can't fight, they are disappointing their fans and repeated such occurrences naturally lead those fans to question their worth.

Interestingly, the figures above do support those like Morti who recognise Asanoyama's worth, as he is the only wrestler/Ozeki from the above list to have maintained a kachikoshi-worth average (>8 wins).  So among the three current next-gen Ozeki, there is one shining(?) star.  But neither Takakeisho nor Shodai are living up to even Goeido's or Takayasu's performance averages from there decline earlier in the last two years.  If fans weren't being treated to top-notch Ozeki sumo from Goeido and Takayasu, why should they be satisfied with Takakeisho's and Shodai's performance at this point in time?

Let us consider the Ozeki in another light.  Over the last two years, we have seen both Yokozuna sit out more tournaments than they had sat out in their respective careers prior to that.  We have seen a total of nine out of 18 tournaments where neither Yokozuna has competed in all 15 days (i.e., forfeiting their chances of winning the championship, as is expected of them).

In any absence of Yokozuna, Ozeki are the next line of defence, and on paper they are expected to win Top Division championships.  As most Forum members know, there has been a plethora of unexpected hoisters of the Emperor's Cup over the last two years.  In fact, only one Ozeki (i.e., Takakeisho) has won a championship during the Yokozuna's joint absences.  The rest (89%) were won by lower-ranked wrestlers.  Granted, some of those winners went on to become Ozeki, but they were technically casting light on the relative weakness of the existing Ozeki at the time.

It would be useful to compare the above stats with Ozeki in other periods in the past.  But nonetheless, the numbers do not exactly paint a pretty picture for the most recent period.  If some fans are grumbling about the Ozeki, there is some basis to support the disillusionment.  And as they say, where there is smoke, there is fire.  

Lastly, I will simply say that these comments and observations are not meant to prove that the aforementioned sekitori are not talented sumo wrestlers.  They would not have reached the rank of Ozeki if they weren't.  It simply draws attention to the fact that there are certain expectations of Ozeki rank-holders, and it is very difficult indeed to meet those expectations.  If the men were averaging 10 wins per tournament and winning each championship in the absence of the Yokozunas, I can guarantee you that no one would be mumbling "faux-zeki" or the like!

Edited by Amamaniac
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21 minutes ago, Amamaniac said:

Lastly, I will simply say that these comments and observations are not meant to prove that the aforementioned sekitori are not talented sumo wrestlers.  They would not have reached the rank of Ozeki if they weren't. 

Thank you so much for the detailed post! I just wanted to add on this point: every rikishi in the top divisions, makuuchi, juryo etc., is top of the crop, they all are the world's best sumotori.

And I think that there was no real disrespect meant here. Going back and forth in arguments is what is so fun about discussions in general. And since there is so much to talk about sumo, it makes up for such lively discussions. 

...

Day 12 will be the make or break day for Takayasu. I hope he makes it and wins. I feel I am jinxing him somewhat because I am rooting for him. (Weeping...)

In happier news, I got 15 out of 19 predictions right for day 11 in my makeshift prediction game. I call it practice before I can join the games for the next basho. I fully expect to drop to 4 out of 20 predictions or similarly horrible rates by then. (Laughing...)

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Let's be real about the Ozeki criticism anyway: If any of the current Ozeki performed above average for a year (disregarding that most of them haven't been Ozeki for a year) and still hadn't grabbed a rope, nobody would say 'Oh, that's a great Ozeki!', instead people would come out of the woodwork with criticism about how they are choking, or not doing enough keiko, etc.

 

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1 hour ago, SumoKitten said:

Day 12 will be the make or break day for Takayasu. I hope he makes it and wins. I feel I am jinxing him somewhat because I am rooting for him. (Weeping...)

As my sumo friend says: wrestlers who secure a lead after 10 days (i.e., Takayasu) "have their fate in their own hands."  I doubt you rooting for him will change the outcome.  Frankly, rooting is a positive thing.  Compare it to those radical NBA fans who taunt players on the opposing teams.  That comes much closer to having a negative impact than some far-removed person expressing their hopes on an internet forum that next to no one among oozumo wrestlers have time to see...

Try and think positively! (Thirdprize...)

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2 hours ago, Amamaniac said:

Let's start by looking at average wins as an Ozeki:  Goeido 7.5 wins/tournament; Takayasu 7.9 wins/tournament; Tochinoshin 5 wins/tournament; Takakeisho 7.2 wins/tournament; Asanoyama 8.5 wins/tournament; and Shoudai 7 wins/per tournament.  On paper, Ozeki are expected to win 10 bouts every tournament.  It is painfully clear that none of the recent representative have been able to live up to those expectations.

You can do what you want, but I'm not holding it against Shodai that he started his first basho at Ozeki 3-0 and had to drop with a legitimate injury. Saying he's averaging 7 with no context is not giving a fair representation of his sumo when he's basically performed at a Yokozuna level on the dohyo since the start of 2020.

Obviously you can say the same for Asanoyama, who hits 10+ wins every time like clockwork. Takakeisho's had the most consistency/injury concerns but his ceiling's still very high coming into any given tournament. All 3 Ozeki are far from bad imo.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Amamaniac said:

Interestingly, the figures above do support those like Morti who recognise Asanoyama's worth, as he is the only wrestler/Ozeki from the above list to have maintained a kachikoshi-worth average (>8 wins).  So among the three current next-gen Ozeki, there is one shining(?) star.  But neither Takakeisho nor Shodai are living up to even Goeido's or Takayasu's performance averages from there decline earlier in the last two years.

Shodai has yet to finish even three basho at the rank so I don’t think there’s enough data there yet to judge his Ozeki numbers fairly. For what it’s worth though, his debut kyujo aside, he has an 11-4JY and may yet make DD this time, though even an 8-7 wouldn’t harm his average too badly.

Takakeisho’s numbers are similarly skewed by a couple of big kyujo tournaments, most notably the first two at the rank when he tore a muscle and his career was on a knife edge. The 3/30 record there pulls his numbers way down. Also, the 12-3D he got in his Ozekiwake basho to regain the rank really ought to be counted. It was a false rank forced on him by that freakish injury and nothing to do with ability or performance. He was an Ozeki in all but name. If we count that and discard the first two kyujo, his average rises from 7.2 to 8.1. Since returning from that injury, he’s also managed sth none of the Ozeki before him like Goeido managed: a second Yusho. 

Asanoyama needs no defending. His numbers are solidly Ozeki level.

Edited by Eikokurai
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Posted (edited)

Ozeki-level sumo is at least one 8-7 every other basho.  If he is not in the yusho race, any effort beyond that is a useless threat to his career.  He really only requires two strategically placed 10 win bashos a year.  Those damn yusho runs keep showing up now and then to skew the results.  When two 8-win Ozekis get matched up late in the basho, one of them will have to acquire an effortless 9th win.

Edited by Asojima
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Posted (edited)

Aight, let's get into these Ozeki weeds. 

I've gone back on all Ozeki back to Kaio (I just arbitrailty chose to look at Ozeki promotions from year 2000 on).

For win / loss percentage, I've excluded abscences - but included fusen (both wins and losses). Only including basho AT THE RANK. No lead-up, no ozekiwake.

EDIT: Current basho (March 2021) is entirely omitted.

Basho are counted as Kyujo if there is any absence, from 1 day to the full 15. 

Keep in mind the general 10/15 wins works out to 66.7%, for many that appears to be the benchmark - so let's rank ozeki by that criteria first:

No surprises here, eventual Yokozuna largely on top. Asanoyama and Shodai are likely benefiting from their smaller sample size.

Rikishi Wins Losses Win %
Asashoryu 38 7 84%
Hakuho 73 17 81%
Kisenosato 332 133 71%
Asanoyama  34 14 71%
Shodai 14 6 70%
Harumafuji 214 105 67%
Takayasu  113 57 66%
Kakuryu  119 61 66%
Baruto 133 69 66%
Takakeisho 65 39 63%
Tochiazuma  207 125 62%
Kaio 524 328 62%
Kotooshu 378 264 59%
Kotomitsuki 141 104 58%
Goeido 260 194 57%
Kotoshogiku 256 192 57%
Terunofuji  96 87 52%
Tochinoshin  35 43 45%

Let's look at Kyujo %.

Rikishi Kyujo Basho Kyujo %
Kakuryu  0 12 0%
Kisenosato 0 31 0%
Asashoryu 0 3 0%
Harumafuji 1 22 5%
Kotomitsuki 2 17 12%
Kotoshogiku 4 32 13%
Baruto 2 15 13%
Hakuho 1 7 14%
Kotooshu 8 47 17%
Goeido 7 33 21%
Terunofuji  3 14 21%
Kaio 14 65 22%
Asanoyama  1 4 25%
Tochiazuma 11 30 37%
Takayasu  6 15 40%
Tochinoshin  3 7 43%
Takakeishō  4 9 44%
Shodai 1 2 50%

There is definitely a trend towards Ozeki Kyujo more recently. That said, many in this forum would agree that these days rikishi should be sitting out rather than risking career-ending injury, no? Seems like a good thing, really.

So I don't know, let's balance this out somehow. How do we feel about z-score of wins and kyujos combined?

Rikishi Win Ratio Kyujo Ratio Sum
Asashoryu 2.11 1.31 3.42
Hakuho 1.76 0.41 2.17
Kisenosato 0.74 1.31 2.05
Kakuryu  0.18 1.31  1.49
Harumafuji 0.29 1.02 1.31
Baruto 0.16 0.47  0.63
Asanoyama  0.68 -0.26 0.42
Kotomitsuki -0.72 0.57 -0.15
Kotoshogiku -0.76 0.52 - 0.24
Kotooshu -0.58 0.24 -0.34
Kaio -0.30 -0.05 -0.35
Goeido -0.75 -0.03 -0.77
Takayasu  0.22 -1.21 -0.99
Tochiazuma -0.21 -0.99 -1.19
Shodai 0.59 -1.84 -1.24
Terunofuji  -1.25 -0.04 -1.29
Takakeishō  -0.20 -1.49 -1.68
Tochinoshin  -2.05 -1.39 -3.44

I think we might be onto a good measurement system here, based on that eventual Yokozuna dominance!

Also, I guess forum intuition is checking out. Asanoyama is pretty respectable, Shodai and Takakeisho have room for improvement. 

I considered also allowing a field for number of ozeki basho at the rank, but decided against it. It doesn't really change things much, for what it's worth.

Interestingly, going in to this, I'd have said Baruto was closest to Yokozuna without reaching it of post-2000 Ozeki (I know Kaio won a decent chunk of tournaments, but for mine Baruto at his peak was SO close); and I think many would agree Tochinoshin was the worst least successful Ozeki in recent memory.

Anyway, take from this what you will. I had fun doing it.

Edited by Houmanumi
Accidentally included Tochiazuma's ozekiwake basho's, fixed.
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Asojima said:

Ozeki-level sumo is at least one 8-7 every other basho.  If he is not in the yusho race, any effort beyond that is a useless threat to his career.  He really only requires two strategically placed 10 win bashos a year.  Those damn yusho runs keep showing up now and then to skew the results.  When two 8-win Ozekis get matched up late in the basho, one of them will have to acquire an effortless 9th win.

The sad part is I can't tell whether this is in partial jest or not. It's sort of sad that there's a perverse result from the rank privilege at the top end of the banzuke. On the other hand, as long as attitudes toward injury continue to be as boneheaded as they are now, I can completely see and support the rationale for this.

48 minutes ago, Houmanumi said:

There is definitely a trend towards Ozeki Kyujo more recently. That said, many in this forum would agree that these days rikishi should be sitting out rather than risking career-ending injury, no? Seems like a good thing, really.

I'd agree they should be sitting out. The current ozeki are perhaps a bit hard done by this stat, because both Asanoyama and Shodai have already got to go kyujo once in their <1 year tenure as ozeki so far, and the less said about Takakeisho the better. If I had the time (work is hectic this week, unfortunately), I'd like to see how long into their ozeki careers most wrestlers lasted before their first kyujo; some of the lingering (not very justified) criticism of the current ozeki, or jokes that the rank is cursed, might be due to the fact that they've had at least 1 kyujo a year at the rank, when after the last bunch of broken ozeki we were hoping for a younger, healthier, bunch.

Would you say in terms of quality of sumo which of Baruto at his peak or Asanoyama over the past year looks closer to yokozuna? Asanoyama is hitting much better numbers than Baruto, and only scores below Baruto in terms of kyujo percentage. But in a sense, the kyujo score, as the number of bites of the apple you have, represents more opportunities for wrestlers to show off; intuitively I feel that it doesn't actually assist in our understanding of what numbers over what period a wrestler is posting to be considered good or not, just how often he shows up.

Edited by Seiyashi

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23 minutes ago, Seiyashi said:

Would you say in terms of quality of sumo which of Baruto at his peak or Asanoyama over the past year looks closer to yokozuna?

I'll preface this by saying I'm quietly confident that Asanoyama will be a yokozuna one day, and I personally have zero problem with his record at ozeki. 

I think the Baruto of 2011/12 was doing yokozuna-level sumo, and I don't think Asanoyama is far from that level now either, he just needs to shore up some gaps in his game/stop giving up those early starts and he'll be hard for anybody to beat. There's certainly nothing wrong with 12-3 J, 10-5 and 11-4 J (excluding his Kyujo). He'll get there (touch wood).

 

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1 minute ago, Houmanumi said:
27 minutes ago, Seiyashi said:

Would you say in terms of quality of sumo which of Baruto at his peak or Asanoyama over the past year looks closer to yokozuna?

I'll preface this by saying I'm quietly confident that Asanoyama will be a yokozuna one day, and I personally have zero problem with his record at ozeki. 

I think the Baruto of 2011/12 was doing yokozuna-level sumo, and I don't think Asanoyama is far from that level now either, he just needs to shore up some gaps in his game/stop giving up those early starts and he'll be hard for anybody to beat. There's certainly nothing wrong with 12-3 J, 10-5 and 11-4 J (excluding his Kyujo). He'll get there (touch wood).

Yeah, I don't have much issue with your assessment either; I'm just more interested in whether the statistics reflect that in an accurate and germane way. Taking your assessment at face value - i.e. Baruto > Asanoyama currently, it's interesting that Baruto only checks out over Asanoyama thanks to his better kyujo score, but that is not a positive contributor towards quality of sumo. It at best suggests that the rikishi in question was less laid up by injury at ozeki and more likely to perform at the rank. And eyeballing Baruto's scores at ozeki doesn't show quick ways to improve his win score either, because his drop was fast and precipituous, not preceded by a whole string of mediocre scores.

So going purely on win score alone, Asanoyama ought to be the rikishi doing way better and looking way better at the moment, because he is far beating Baruto for consistency and general results, especially once you exclude Baruto's yusho. Yet somehow the general opinion of his sumo, especially the basho, doesn't seem to reflect that reality. We are either looking at a serious expectation mismatch here or there's room to tweak the subtlety of your statistics.

But all the same, I'd give a react if I could - out of them for today, but you deserve 2!

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1 hour ago, Houmanumi said:

I've gone back on all Ozeki back to Kaio (I just arbitrailty chose to look at Ozeki promotions from year 2000 on).

My other takeaway, looking at the charts, is that the era of Sadogatake ozeki dominance seems to have set a relatively high bar for ozeki to be judged by, considering how many ozeki of that period ranked high or got promoted. Maybe that's partially the reason behind the handwringing over the ozeki, because we're comparing them to fairly illustrious predecessors (who beat even Kaio!).

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1 minute ago, Seiyashi said:

So going purely on win score alone, Asanoyama ought to be the rikishi doing way better and looking way better at the moment, because he is far beating Baruto for consistency and general results, especially once you exclude Baruto's yusho. Yet somehow the general opinion of his sumo, especially the basho, doesn't seem to reflect that reality. We are either looking at a serious expectation mismatch here or there's room to tweak the subtlety of your statistics.

But all the same, I'd give a react if I could - out of them for today, but you deserve 2!

Agreed, this methodology is bias towards those who don't go kyujo; and even then Asanoyama is skewed by the fact that he's not had long at the rank so that Kyujo hurts him more.

That said, when you look at Baruto's ozeki career, we're talking 13 KK (average of ~10.1 wins), a Yusho, and his only 2 MK's leading to his demotion being from Kyujo's. That kind of record is going to lead to some romanticising after the fact.

To give a point in time comparison against Asanoyama:

  Ozeki Basho #1 Ozeki Basho #2 Ozeki Basho #3 Ozeki Basho #4
Baruto 10-5 8-7 9-6 11-4
Asanoyama 12-3 J 10-5 1-2-12 11-4 J

If you disregard the Kyujo, Asanoyama is pretty handily on top, which gives me even more confidence that he'll go to the next level. Cynics will bring up the potential difference in level of competition, but hey, there will always be intangibles.

Also it's worth mentioning that when I mentioned Baruto as the 'closest to Yokozuna' I wasn't regarding the current crop.

Also, a react in spirit does me just fine, let alone two.

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3 minutes ago, Seiyashi said:

My other takeaway, looking at the charts, is that the era of Sadogatake ozeki dominance seems to have set a relatively high bar for ozeki to be judged by, considering how many ozeki of that period ranked high or got promoted. Maybe that's partially the reason behind the handwringing over the ozeki, because we're comparing them to fairly illustrious predecessors (who beat even Kaio!).

Also, Shodai and Asanoyama have very respectable win/loss records; with Takakeisho's also not being awful by any stretch. We're talking young ozeki who are taking care of their bodies -- this should give them more time to make up for the impact of the early Kyujo's. 

But I concede this could all go to hell in a handbasket.

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https://jbssumo.blogspot.com/2021/03/grand-sumo-results-with-relevant-links.html

Day 11 report complete (except for NHK video, which should come along in an a little more than an hour). Links to 7 sources and 19 articles, 2 videos about Kakuryu's retirement--majority of the articles are Rikishi testimonials at nissansports.com (Japanese), Results, match articles, photos, and when the NHK upload is complete, 219 full match videos. Kirmarite statistics, match time statistics,  Hachi-koshi/Make-koshe list,Top rank performance and Yusho race, maegashira v san'yaku statistics, Juryo substitute statistics. Also links to stable statistics and english translated quotes that come from this board. Thanks very much for that. My newbies know little more than I about what it means when a Yokozuna retires. 

Feedback is always welcome.

Enjoy

https://jbssumo.blogspot.com/2021/03/grand-sumo-results-with-relevant-links.html

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, Seiyashi said:

So going purely on win score alone, Asanoyama ought to be the rikishi doing way better and looking way better at the moment, because he is far beating Baruto for consistency and general results, especially once you exclude Baruto's yusho. Yet somehow the general opinion of his sumo, especially the basho, doesn't seem to reflect that reality. We are either looking at a serious expectation mismatch here or there's room to tweak the subtlety of your statistics.

Yeah, I'd go with expectation mismatch. Ozeki who manage to win more yusho than people thought they "should" win get overrated while they're active (e.g. Chiyotaikai, whose 11-year ozeki career was really just: 2 years average, 3 years above average, 4 years average, 2 years decline phase), everybody else gets underrated. It's no coincidence that most ozeki end up getting judged more favorably after they're gone.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Amazing work by @Amamaniac and @Houmanumi

Thanks to the both of you. I think Takayasu and Takakeisho both don't get the credit they deserve for their Ozeki quality. Both have had really bad luck with injuries, yet still managed to put up decent numbers when they seemed somewhat healthy. But it's more eye test for me than anything else, so thoughts my vary. 

The ten win concept for Ozeki is interesting. My gut feeling tells me that the number of 10 win averages among "perma Ozeki" (Ozeki who didn't go higher or if they did took at least a certain number of Basho to do so) may be far lesser than we think, especially when factoring in kyujo tournaments. 

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Posted (edited)
14 minutes ago, Thorbjarn said:

Amazing work by @Amamaniac and @Houmanumi

Thanks to the both of you. I think Takayasu and Takakeisho both don't get the credit they deserve for their Ozeki quality. Both have had really bad luck with injuries, yet still managed to put up decent numbers when they seemed somewhat healthy. But it's more eye test for me than anything else, so thoughts my vary. 

The ten win concept for Ozeki is interesting. My gut feeling tells me that the number of 10 win averages among "perma Ozeki" (Ozeki who didn't go higher or if they did took at least a certain number of Basho to do so) may be far lesser than we think, especially when factoring in kyujo tournaments. 

Factoring in Kyujo:

Rikishi Avg. Wins
Baruto           8.87
Asanoyama            8.50
Kotomitsuki           8.29
Kaio           8.06
Kotooshu           8.04
Kotoshogiku           8.00
Goeido           7.88
Takayasu            7.53
Takakeishō            7.22
Tochiazuma           7.13
Shodai           7.00
Terunofuji            6.86
Tochinoshin            5.00

 

Excluding Kyujo (Shodai only has 1 tournament, so grain of salt there):

Rikishi  Average Wins 
Shodai                    11.00
Takayasu                     10.33
Asanoyama                     10.25
Baruto                    10.08
Takakeisho                      9.83
Kaio                      9.72
Tochiazuma                      9.35
Kotooshu                      9.28
Goeido                      8.81
Kotoshogiku                      8.71
Kotomitsuki                      8.29
Terunofuji                       8.27
Tochinoshin                       7.50
Edited by Houmanumi
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Tochimaru was not taking prisoners during his juryo tryout today. But, Jokoryu just stood there and taking it all until the former practically collapsed on his own.

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, Thorbjarn said:

Amazing work by @Amamaniac and @Houmanumi

Thanks to the both of you. I think Takayasu and Takakeisho both don't get the credit they deserve for their Ozeki quality. Both have had really bad luck with injuries, yet still managed to put up decent numbers when they seemed somewhat healthy. But it's more eye test for me than anything else, so thoughts my vary. 

The ten win concept for Ozeki is interesting. My gut feeling tells me that the number of 10 win averages among "perma Ozeki" (Ozeki who didn't go higher or if they did took at least a certain number of Basho to do so) may be far lesser than we think, especially when factoring in kyujo tournaments. 

48 minutes ago, Asashosakari said:

Yeah, I'd go with expectation mismatch. Ozeki who manage to win more yusho than people thought they "should" win get overrated while they're active (e.g. Chiyotaikai, whose 11-year ozeki career was really just: 2 years average, 3 years above average, 4 years average, 2 years decline phase), everybody else gets underrated. It's no coincidence that most ozeki end up getting judged more favorably after they're gone.

It's just occurred to me why there is an expectation. Does no one find it incongruous that to get to ozeki, you are expected to hit 33 over 3, or 11 on average a tournament, against pretty much the same calibre of opposition that you will fight both before and after promotion, yet after being promoted, it is unsanctionable to regularly turn in less than that?

Spoiler
23 minutes ago, Houmanumi said:
Rikishi  Average Wins 
Shodai                    11.00
Takayasu                     10.33
Asanoyama                     10.25
Baruto                    10.08
Takakeisho                      9.83
Kaio                      9.72
Tochiazuma                      9.35
Kotooshu                      9.28
Goeido                      8.81
Kotoshogiku                      8.71
Kotomitsuki                      8.29
Terunofuji                       8.27
Tochinoshin                       7.50

So other than Shodai who has too few data points, Takayasu who got a fair number of jun-yusho and was perhaps the most unlucky ozeki relative to his ability, and Asanoyama and Baruto whom we agree are close to yokozuna level, everyone else is more than one win off that 33/3 level, and a bit below DD even. (The less said about Tochinoshin's average makekoshi the better).

The only analogue is yokozuna - to be promoted you need to win and/or come damn close to 2 yusho consecutively, and yokozuna are generally expected to be leading yusho races at all times. So the comparable analogue for a 33/3 record for an ozeki, from 11 wins a basho on average, is to at least hit 10.

That said, for the current batch of ozeki, I think the expectation is more one of yearning for a strong hand atop the banzuke, which point @Asashosakari has already addressed - no amount of wishing is going to make them magically yokozuna. But based on the argument above, it's small wonder that there is criticism of ozeki who fail to regularly hit double digits.

Edited by Seiyashi
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I really hope Ura gets number 8 tomorrow, then gets out of the tournament for good. Painful to watch and a torn or strained calf muscle can't be good when your knees are shot. 

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Posted (edited)

At any rate, back to regularly scheduled programming: Enho's blown a perfect start to the basho and a couple days' rest by one of his main rivals to fall behind in the juryo yusho race. Chiyomaru now leads the juryo race at 9-3, with Enho left behind in the chase group at 8-4 with Hakuyozan, Takagenji, and Ishiura.

Damnit man, pull yourself together, Enho! The juryo yusho is now Chiyomaru's to lose, but considering it's juryo, that's entirely possible.

Edited by Seiyashi

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Posted (edited)
33 minutes ago, Seiyashi said:

It's just occurred to me why there is an expectation. Does no one find it incongruous that to get to ozeki, you are expected to hit 33 over 3, or 11 on average a tournament, against pretty much the same calibre of opposition that you will fight both before and after promotion, yet after being promoted, it is unsanctionable to regularly turn in less than that?

I honestly don't. The only alternative would be to make it both harder to keep the rank and easier to attain it, and notwithstanding how often fans clamour for exactly that, I seriously doubt they would actually enjoy the revolving door effect that it would almost certainly produce. (It's been bad enough in recent years even with the existing rules!) It's definitely not in the NSK's interests anyway, since a reasonable amount of stability at the second-highest rank is what they need and want for business purposes.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Kotoshoho returns and picks up a win. He probably needs to win out to have a chance of staying in Makuuchi with 4-3-8, right? 

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Prognosticated opponents for the last stretch of the basho.

Takayasu has Hokutofuji today and Wakatakakage tomorrow. He's predicted to have either Myogiryu or Tobizaru (depending on performance) on day 14, and Takanosho on senshuraku.

Asanoyama has Mitakeumi today and Takakeisho tomorrow. He's predicted to have Terunofuji on day 14 and Shodai on senshuraku.

Terunofuji fights Tamawashi today. After that, his schedule is the reverse of Asanoyama's: he fights Shodai tomorrow, Asanoyama on day 14, and Takakeisho on senshuraku.

Tobizaru has Meisei today and Aoiyama tomorrow (first time meeting vs Aoiyama). The results of these two bouts will determine whether he gets sprung up to face Takayasu or otherwise.

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