Seiyashi

Asanoyama caught violating COVID restrictions

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4 minutes ago, Shinobi Steve said:

To be completely honest, I don't have much of an issue with him going to a club.

To be fair I don't think anyone in the NSK has an issue with him going out to a club per se; it's fairly standard socialising in Japan and no one would have blinked had he done it two years ago. It's because he did it after banzuke day, where the guidelines on no external social interaction kick in to protect the rikishi who will be in close contact with each other, that everyone's up in arms about it.

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17 hours ago, Churaumi said:

 But, I think he'll step on the dohyo again if he's willing to take his lumps. 

 

That is the big question. I see him as a weak persona who doesn't have the balls to go back to wrestling at 2 PM, depending on the severity of the punishment.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Seiyashi said:

To be fair I don't think anyone in the NSK has an issue with him going out to a club per se; it's fairly standard socialising in Japan and no one would have blinked had he done it two years ago. It's because he did it after banzuke day, where the guidelines on no external social interaction kick in to protect the rikishi who will be in close contact with each other, that everyone's up in arms about it.

Not for nothing the Bunshun pre-release/teaser article made specific reference to Shobushi's death from Covid last year.

What hasn't really been touched upon here in the thread is that the second time Asanoyama was spotted going to the club, a man that was waiting for him apparently approached the Bunshun reporters to scare them off; they've identified him as another newspaper reporter - presumably broadsheet based on the context, not a competing tabloid. I wonder if that was just some random news guy Asanoyama knows, or if it was somebody working the sumo beat (which would add a rather sordid layer to the story, at least from the Kyokai's perspective).

Edited by Asashosakari

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, Asashosakari said:

What hasn't really been touched upon here in the thread is that the second time Asanoyama was spotted going to the club, a man that was waiting for him apparently approached the Bunshun reporters to scare them off; they've identified him as another newspaper reporter (presumably broadsheet based on the context, not a tabloid). I wonder if that was just some random news guy Asanoyama knows, or if it was somebody working the sumo beat.

I wonder if that random chap was the one who tipped off the NSK about this whole affair a day before it broke. I still can't figure out why Asanoyama would have been questioned on the 18th, when the article was released on the 19th, unless Shibatayama and Oguruma had gotten wind of it somehow.

And the question if they did is; why? Was someone trying to do Asanoyama or the NSK a solid by giving them a chance to settle this and take the force of the tabloid article away? If he was that friendly to/with Asanoyama, why not go straight to Takasago in that event and let him do for Asanoyama what Shikoroyama did for Abi, especially as an action like that was not unprecedented? Or was Takasago in on all this to begin with, even as a passive bystander (i.e. he can't control Asanoyama)? This mysterious pre-scandal questioning is really quite perplexing.

Gosh darn it. The online article from Bunshun mentions disclosing the random chap's relationship to Asanoyama in the print and electronic edition. I'm not about to shell to read filth, but now my curiosity's piqued.

EDIT: Or it could just be the tabloid itself asking for comments before they go to press. I need to go out and buy a new pack of razors, brand Occam.

Edited by Seiyashi

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Just became aware of this news just now (Shakinghead...)

I guess his rather off performance this basho might have to do with this scandal.

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According to Chris on youtube, he will be out for several basho and will be demoted to juryo.

 

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Just now, Kurowashi said:

According to Chris on youtube, he will be out for several basho and will be demoted to juryo.

 

I think I’ll need a second opinion...

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5 minutes ago, ViscountessNivlac said:

I think I’ll need a second opinion...

Yeah i‘m also not convinced, seems to mild and i still wouldn‘t be surprised if he retires.

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53 minutes ago, hakutorizakura said:

I guess his rather off performance this basho might have to do with this scandal.

Much as I've been a supporter of his, this isn't the only basho where he's been shaky.

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7 minutes ago, Sue said:
1 hour ago, hakutorizakura said:

I guess his rather off performance this basho might have to do with this scandal.

Much as I've been a supporter of his, this isn't the only basho where he's been shaky.

We don't know if this is the only basho he's been sneaking out for. If he's done it after his shin-ozeki basho that might sort of explain why he's been lacklustre ever since.

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1 hour ago, Kurowashi said:

According to Chris on youtube, he will be out for several basho and will be demoted to juryo.

 

It's all still speculation at this point, Chris is pretty much giving the best case scenario. As he said at the end, the committee will now write it's report and the executive will decide, no guarantee they will rubber stamp anything.

 

Shibatayama's comments sounded more like spitballing than flying a kite.

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20 minutes ago, Mightyduck said:

It's all still speculation at this point, Chris is pretty much giving the best case scenario. As he said at the end, the committee will now write it's report and the executive will decide, no guarantee they will rubber stamp anything.

 

Shibatayama's comments sounded more like spitballing than flying a kite.

Ah ok, i didn‘t get that, thanks for clarification.

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Plus the fate of Takasago Oyakata will no doubt be discussed.  At the very least he is certain to face some kind of demotion from his present rank in the Kyokai.

Hard one to call though in terms of Asanoyama - if they use Abi's case as a precedent (and also Osunaarashi in terms of not coming clean), given his rank and the expectations of his conduct, I think he'll be asked to retire.  But will that be retire 100% - ie can't become an oyakata, presumably he hasn't kabu at this stage anyway - or just retire immediately from active competition?

If they give him the same ban as Abi, he may consider himself to have gotten off lightly.

 

Swami

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6 minutes ago, Swami said:

can't become an oyakata, presumably he hasn't kabu at this stage anyway

He doesn't need one, he'd get three years as Asanoyama Oyakata.

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The punishment will indeed be interesting given that Abi set the precedent of a three basho ban (and the rejection of his resignation). Of course, there's the 'Ozeki factor' with Asanoyama, will they be more lenient because he's the great Japanese hope for Yokozuna or will they be harder on him because he broke Covid rules AND lied about it to his seniors? Also, as Kintamayama notes, if he is busted down the ranks 'does he have the balls', to get back to the top?

On balance, I think I'm with Swami in the post above:

38 minutes ago, Swami said:

If they give him the same ban as Abi, he may consider himself to have gotten off lightly. 

 

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47 minutes ago, ViscountessNivlac said:
52 minutes ago, Swami said:

can't become an oyakata, presumably he hasn't kabu at this stage anyway

He doesn't need one, he'd get three years as Asanoyama Oyakata.

Assuming that disgraced rikishi forced to retire will be welcome as oyakata to begin with.

Herutto has also pointed out that the Abi precedent is perhaps not quite as favourable as we hope; Shikoroyama's actions turned out to be for the best regarding Abi, but he apparently handed in Abi's papers in circumstances that led the NSK to suspect that the papers were not being submitted willingly. To avoid litigation, the NSK decided to hold the papers instead. 

That means that contrary to what I've been suggesting, if Asanoyama hands in his papers as a show of contrition, the NSK may well accept them anyway, unless it's Takasago that does it for him, in which case it loses that contrition.

Really torn about this. The net seems to be drawing tighter.

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The other weird part is the other newspaper man covering for the visits? Its strange and I wonder if the head honchos will have a negative view of someone outside the kyokai having that kind of non-koenkai influence over a top wrestler.

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There is no way in the world for Asanoyama to retire and remain in the kyokai in any capacity, and of course he can't become an oyakata. I don't get why this is even put forth as a possibility. 

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Posted (edited)
7 hours ago, Mightyduck said:

Also naive in the extreme to think that the fine upstanding business people running an after-hours hostess bar wouldn't tip the tabloids off.

 I would say it's extremely unlikely this was leaked by anybody at one of these places he visited. If they aren't the nefarious types then they wouldn't rat out a customer regularly throwing 100s of thousands of Yen their way. You don't run a dairy by shooting the cows. If they are the nefarious type then they still wouldn't. The quickest way to turn valuable information worthless is to reveal it to everyone. The last thing they would want to do is get a potentially blackmailable rikishi thrown out of sumo.

 

Most likely the way the press got a hold of this is by hanging out and spotting his tsukebito.  It's hilarious the way these guys go out of their way to keep themselves from being spotted doing something wrong but then bring along a person known to always be with them and have them be visible. 

 

Edited by Rocks
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1 hour ago, Kintamayama said:

There is no way in the world for Asanoyama to retire and remain in the kyokai in any capacity, and of course he can't become an oyakata. I don't get why this is even put forth as a possibility. 

 

I only raised this suggestion because yokozuna Maedayama was forced to retire in 1949 after dropping out of a tournament claiming illness, only to be subsequently photographed at a baseball game. He did get to remain as an oyakata.  Very different situations of course.  Plus the other notable examples are of course Wajima and Futahaguro - Wajima for putting his toshiyori stock up as collateral for loans, and Futahaguro for unacceptable behaviour to his tsukebito and heya personnel.  

In fairness to the Kyokai, so many of their rules and customs are centuries old and would never have factored COVID breaches into the mix.  At the same time they have to be seen to be doing something about.  Given the recent scandals involving foreign rikishi over the last decade and a half, they can't very well brush this case under the carpet.

 

Swami

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47 minutes ago, Rocks said:

 I would say it's extremely unlikely this was leaked by anybody at one of these places he visited. If they aren't the nefarious types then they wouldn't rat out a customer regularly throwing 100s of thousands of Yen their way. You don't run a dairy by shooting the cows. If they are the nefarious type then they still wouldn't. The quickest way to turn valuable information worthless is to reveal it to everyone. The last thing they would want to do is get a potentially blackmailable rikishi thrown out of sumo.

 

Most likely the way the press got a hold of this is by hanging out and spotting his tsukebito.  It's hilarious the way these guys go out of their way to keep themselves from being spotted doing something wrong but then bring along a person known to always be with them and have them be visible. 

 

Asanoyama is pretty tall. I'm also tall and in Japan I'm always acutely aware of other tall people in like a 3 mile radius (ok, a bit exaggerated, but...). Its like noticing a pole in the ground in a field of trimmed grass. Someone like Asanoyama getting out of a small Japanese taxi and standing up would have drawn my attention.

All I'm saying its really hard to be inconspicuous in Japan when you are tall.

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11 hours ago, Amamaniac said:

He has invested five years in professional sumo, and several more years before that devoted to turning pro. Essentially, oozumo is his cash cow, and it won't be easy to walk away from the only thing he knows.

Again, that's kind of weird that a Kindai grad will be destitute if he can't stay in Sumo (of course, scandal is the poison of careers, so he won't simply land on his feet if he leaves the NSK).

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2 minutes ago, Yamanashi said:

Again, that's kind of weird that a Kindai grad will be destitute if he can't stay in Sumo (of course, scandal is the poison of careers, so he won't simply land on his feet if he leaves the NSK).

If he's only looking at a drop to sekitori, I think he'd probably stick around. 

But dropping to Makushita or lower and I'm with Kintamayama, I don't think he has it in him mentally.

This is all assuming he doesn't retire/get expelled.

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A 3 basho suspension would put him at ozekiwake, low makuuchi, then low juryo.  A return to ozeki would take at least one year, probably longer.  He is 27 yoa now.  That gives him about 5 years to survive in high makuuchi/sanyaku and a remaining life in the kyokai.  Sounds doable to me.  (If they let him!)

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Posted (edited)

A question.

We know a Yokozuna is expected to not only win consistently but also conduct himself with exemplary hinkaku, but are there any such expectations put on Ozeki? In other words, is an Ozeki expected to have more hinkaku than a Sekiwake (who in turn is expected to have a tad more than a Komusubi, etc. etc.), even if not quite as much as a Yokozuna? 

Or is exemplary hinkaku a demand reserved exclusively for Yokozuna? 

Edited by Kaninoyama

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