Kintamayama

Hakuhou is now Miyagino

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I don't think that was an "implication." 

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On 30/07/2022 at 13:32, Koorifuu said:

I hope Hokuseiho doesn't read this thread or else he'll be bugged by the implication he's got no talent.

Ok, I confess I haven't really paid that much attention to him, but my impression is that his main technique is size.
Maybe Miyagino-san sees something in him that I don't have the eyes to see, and I'll end up looking foolish when Hokuseiho gets a rope.

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Posted (edited)

Hokuseiho is slow and clumsy, but I'd say he is seriously powerful even for his size and also has impressive stability. He's towering, but not actually THAT heavy for a sekitori, yet once he gets hold of opponents it's as if they weigh nothing and he weighs twice what he does. I also think he has good self-awareness of what his abilities are, and uses this to effectively implement his strengths. 

He's definitely not a member of the 'wow he's so athletic!' group, but I do think there's ability there beyond size. Now, if we are talking about a giant who does have speed, power, mobility, etc......look out for current amateur yokozuna, 193cm/175kg Daiki Nakamura, who is set to go pro next year with an Ms15TD. Having won the Hakuho Cup in middle school, Miyagino could be a frontrunner to nab him and expressed interest in recruiting him already years back, although Nakamura also has ties to Naruto, Nishonoseki, and Takadagawa - in the later case he visited for keiko as a high schooler, and was already beating Shonanoumi while the later was near his highest rank.

2X high school yokozuna Tetsuya Ochiai, who hasn't joined yet but has been seen at Miyagino and checks all the right boxes (Tottori Johoku + Hakuho Cup champ) also blends athleticism and size, built like a bull at around 160kg, though he's average height.

Edited by Katooshu
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Posted (edited)

The most common complaint about Hokuseiho is that he doesn't have a tachiai, but I think there's a genuine question of does Hokuseiho really gain from charging hard at the tachiai? Here's this super tall, slow, clumsy guy who doesn't weigh insanely much, so he's probably a bit top-heavy as well. Charging in fast against a shorter, quicker, more agile opponent, what exactly is he gaining? Seems to me he's just begging to be henka'd or ashitori'd or something. Instead he stands up slowly, his opponent gets a good hit in, he absorbs it and grabs the belt with his crazy long arms, and then they're locked in a belt battle with a 200cm giant who can get all kinds of angles and leverage. Isn't that exactly what he wants?

Looking at his 4 losses in juryo, they're to 25 year old uni star Oshoma who beat him on the belt, Shimazuumi who he had a good position on until Shimazuumi managed to pull a Shodai trick near the edge, Roga who got an excellent grip out of the tachiai and got Hokuseiho's belt without giving up a belt grip to Hokuseiho, and former Komusubi Ryuden who beat him on the belt.

So in what's essentially his Juryo debut, he goes 11-4 with really only 1 loss resulting from a bad tachiai. Two losses to guys who are probably just better than him right now, and one loss to Shimazuumi who pulled off a very nice move well after the tachiai. Is the tachiai really a big problem, or are we just expecting a fish to climb a tree by expecting him to do sumo like someone 185cm?

Edited by maglor
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The true test for Hokuseiho won't come until he regularly has to contend with heavy-duty pushers like Chiyotairyu, Aoiyama or Tamawashi. Mitoryu also manages to make himself look very heavy in yotsu, but becomes very light when put under pressure and forced to be mobile.

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6 hours ago, Asashosakari said:

Mitoryu also manages to make himself look very heavy in yotsu, but becomes very light when put under pressure and forced to be mobile.

Unlike Aoiyama who appears very heavy in motion but becomes very light when engaged in yotsu.

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12 hours ago, Katooshu said:

2X high school yokozuna Tetsuya Ochiai, who hasn't joined yet but has been seen at Miyagino and checks all the right boxes (Tottori Johoku + Hakuho Cup champ) also blends athleticism and size, built like a bull at around 160kg, though he's average height.

More importantly, is he going to be the first recruit in a while who hasn't been a midget or a giant?

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1 hour ago, Seiyashi said:

More importantly, is he going to be the first recruit in a while who hasn't been a midget or a giant?

always remembered him being short, but that's probably hazy memory. He def has the goods though, and I can see him making a big impact in Sekitori ranks. 

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Posted (edited)

In December's All Japan Championship, where he earned the SdTD, he was listed at 180cm. He looked about the same height as other competitors listed at that height. 

He has absolutely massive legs and has a very powerful build - as mentioned, like he's part bull - could make him appear shorter than he is at first glance.

Edited by Katooshu
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15 hours ago, maglor said:

The most common complaint about Hokuseiho is that he doesn't have a tachiai, but I think there's a genuine question of does Hokuseiho really gain from charging hard at the tachiai? Here's this super tall, slow, clumsy guy who doesn't weigh insanely much, so he's probably a bit top-heavy as well. Charging in fast against a shorter, quicker, more agile opponent, what exactly is he gaining? Seems to me he's just begging to be henka'd or ashitori'd or something. Instead he stands up slowly, his opponent gets a good hit in, he absorbs it and grabs the belt with his crazy long arms, and then they're locked in a belt battle with a 200cm giant who can get all kinds of angles and leverage. Isn't that exactly what he wants?

Looking at his 4 losses in juryo, they're to 25 year old uni star Oshoma who beat him on the belt, Shimazuumi who he had a good position on until Shimazuumi managed to pull a Shodai trick near the edge, Roga who got an excellent grip out of the tachiai and got Hokuseiho's belt without giving up a belt grip to Hokuseiho, and former Komusubi Ryuden who beat him on the belt.

So in what's essentially his Juryo debut, he goes 11-4 with really only 1 loss resulting from a bad tachiai. Two losses to guys who are probably just better than him right now, and one loss to Shimazuumi who pulled off a very nice move well after the tachiai. Is the tachiai really a big problem, or are we just expecting a fish to climb a tree by expecting him to do sumo like someone 185cm?

Very interesting points you make.

Ps. I love your username but alas I am stuck with Stupidface! 

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On 28/07/2022 at 11:25, rhyen said:

They can’t criticise Hakuho and praise Kisenosato if they do almost the same things.

Have you met the NSK yet? Or Japanese sumo fans?

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Posted (edited)

Interesting article I came across today, regarding ex-Hakuhou's becoming Miyagino. This is reportedly a young oyakata's take:

"Usually when you establish a heya you need money, lots of it. You need to buy land and build a building. If you take over a heya, you need to buy the building from the retiring oyakata. Getting some rikishi to follow you there is also not an easy task. Since the rikishi need to be schooled in the sumo way by the Kyokai, and there are maintenance costs as well, it's customary to pay the retiring Oyakata for that as well. When Futagoyama beya and Fujishima beya merged, it was rumored that it cost 300 million yen. But Hakuhou obviously didn't have a lot of expenses. That is because while still active, he skillfully built his army of future rikishi that he chose personally. He planned his future move from early on and created some routes of recruit. He established the "Hakuhou Cup" where he could check out the future prospects first hand. He established close relations with sumo powerhouse Tottori Johoku high school. Additionally, he had good relations with college powerhouse Nichidai, through Tottori's coach who is a Nichidai alumni. He also has obvious connections to Mongolians who are studying in Japan. That's how he was able to recruit some great prospects. There are 17 rikishi in Miyagino beya at present, but the majority are Hakuhou's boys - Sekitoris Ishiura, Enhou and Hokuseihou, Makushita Houkahou,  Mukainakano, Raihou,  Sandanme Senhou, Chura, Kenyuu and Jonidan Takabahou, Ishii and Kurokage. Ex-Miyagino has certainly benefitted from that. The next step seems to be to become head of his ichimon. Current head of Isegahama beya/Ichimon isegahama Oyakata will be retiring in three years. The next head of the Ichimon will probably be Asakayama (ex- KaioU) who is very popular. After that, it seems it will be Hakuhou's turn. Isegahama Oyakata is planning to pass the heya over to Terunofuji, so we may see a Hakuhou-Terunofuji battle for the Ichimon riji in the future.. Hakuhou's current target seems to be to widen his support within the Ichimon with his eyes on the prize. The first step towards all that was becoming a heya-owning Oyakata."

 

My take edit: And there's Kawazoe of course, who wasn't mentioned since he doesn't exist yet. And Ootani (not sure if he's Hakuhou's recruit, but probably is), who just went 3-0 in Maezumo.

Another edit: Looking at the individuals' records, most of them are duds, Some recruited 7-8 years ago.  In the lower ranks, other than so far successful Mukainakano and Raihou (who just hit the wall at the bottom of Makushita), the rest are Sandanme/Jonidan regulars, some for many years.

Edited by Kintamayama
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12 minutes ago, Kintamayama said:

Isegahama Oyakata seems to be planning to pass the heya over to Terunofuji, so we may see a Hakuhou-Terunofuji battle for the Ichimon riji in the future.. Hakuhou's current target seems to be to widen his support within the Ichimon with his eyes on the prize.

The Weekly Post apparently will focus on that future battle now, they keep telling that for a while now, e.g.

On 10/06/2022 at 19:55, Akinomaki said:

there was talk in a tabloid that Isegahama wants to make Terunofuji a riji and likely the head of the ichimon, in opposition to Magaki who should also aim for the riji post, so in the long run Terunofuji could be Isegahama some day.

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Hakuho's best bet might be to keep making lots of sekitori, not only to demonstrate that Miyagino is the most relevant heya in the ichimon regardless of Isegahama-oyakata being the titular head, but also to get the group as a whole back to a point - in 10-15 years when his first-wave guys are done competing - where they have enough oyakata to reliably elect two riji again...

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On 11/08/2022 at 02:54, Asashosakari said:

Hakuho's best bet might be to keep making lots of sekitori, not only to demonstrate that Miyagino is the most relevant heya in the ichimon regardless of Isegahama-oyakata being the titular head, but also to get the group as a whole back to a point - in 10-15 years when his first-wave guys are done competing - where they have enough oyakata to reliably elect two riji again...

I know it's dangerous in a thread about Hakuho/Miyagino to evoke T*k*n*h*n* (and this isn't quite the same suggestion) but, as an extension of this, do we also think that it may help or suit that aim to snipe a couple of heya from other ichimon to come join his ichimon? There seem to be an awful lot of traditional tatsunami-isegahama kabu that have migrated elsewhere in recent years.

It doesn't seem like it would be hard to see the benefits of that if you're a shisho who is somewhat isolated in that your top recruits will benefit from being able to go do degeiko with the best young talent in the sport. But also I don't know so much about the other ichimon goings-on apart from the administrative/political stuff we hear about.

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On 11/08/2022 at 03:54, Asashosakari said:

Hakuho's best bet might be to keep making lots of sekitori, not only to demonstrate that Miyagino is the most relevant heya in the ichimon regardless of Isegahama-oyakata being the titular head, but also to get the group as a whole back to a point - in 10-15 years when his first-wave guys are done competing - where they have enough oyakata to reliably elect two riji again...

At the expense of which other ichimon?

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4 hours ago, rhyen said:

At the expense of which other ichimon?

Nishonoseki feels like it would be the most obvious one, in that you have quite a number of stables that rarely if ever produce sekitori (Shibatayama, Tagonoura, Otake, Nishiiwa, Minato, Kataonami) and several more which are still quite young with the jury still out. There is a good quantity of oyakata in Nishonoseki ichimon attached to stables that don't really produce. So there's definitely scope for Isegahama ichimon to outproduce Hakuho's generational peers in other ichimon over the next decade, given that he's got a significant jump on most of them (apart from Nishonoseki himself and maybe Naruto) in terms of recruiting.

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On 11/08/2022 at 02:40, Kintamayama said:

Another edit: Looking at the individuals' records, most of them are duds, Some recruited 7-8 years ago.  In the lower ranks, other than so far successful Mukainakano and Raihou (who just hit the wall at the bottom of Makushita), the rest are Sandanme/Jonidan regulars, some for many years.

I wonder what his sekitori hit rate is like compared to other prolific recruiters, both of the past and as well of the current batch of oyakata. 

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3 hours ago, Seiyashi said:
On 11/08/2022 at 01:40, Kintamayama said:

Another edit: Looking at the individuals' records, most of them are duds, Some recruited 7-8 years ago.  In the lower ranks, other than so far successful Mukainakano and Raihou (who just hit the wall at the bottom of Makushita), the rest are Sandanme/Jonidan regulars, some for many years.

I wonder what his sekitori hit rate is like compared to other prolific recruiters, both of the past and as well of the current batch of oyakata. 

I would be happy to do a deep dive here and probably write something longform over on the other site where I tend to do that kind of thing, but the piece I'm missing is pedigree. We can all go into sumodb and run queries on the big recruiters (Sadogatake, Tamanoi, etc), but the key element is how you differentiate from someone who - to borrow from american sport as some pundits we love are wont to do - is a walk on and who's a 5 star recruit. I imagine some of these guys will have joined up with Hakuho due to being a fan of Hakuho, whereas others were well documented to have either come through the Tottori Johoku pipeline, or in the case of his most recent pickup, been a college yokozuna. I think you have to qualify for that. Anecdotally, I think it's possible and even likely that many of the volume recruiters we see from other stables are getting a small number of serious candidates and then filling out a tsukebito farm around that so that they have a support system for their high rankers.

If a shisho recruits 3 nailed on sekitori and then 10 guys who everyone knows are destined to be tsukebito to the 3 sekitori, does that mean his hit rate is 23%? Or does it just mean that he understands the needs of how to run and support a heya and is able to find people who can be pieces in that support structure?

Most of Hakuho's very recent recruiting strategy would indicate he's looking for big hitters and those who don't make it can support the ones that do, but it will be fascinating to see what the churn rate is on the guys that don't make the salaried ranks, especially if they're being recruited with some degree of hype and then end up servants to the guys they thought were their peers.

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3 minutes ago, themistyseas said:

but the key element is how you differentiate from someone who - to borrow from american sport as some pundits we love are wont to do - is a walk on and who's a 5 star recruit

This is where I think the ama/student sumo watchers on the forum can help you out most, perhaps. My impression is that most of Hakuhō's recent recruits have got some pedigree, but Ōtani seemed to have been a surprise complement for Kawazoe.

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16 hours ago, themistyseas said:

I know it's dangerous in a thread about Hakuho/Miyagino to evoke T*k*n*h*n* (and this isn't quite the same suggestion) but, as an extension of this, do we also think that it may help or suit that aim to snipe a couple of heya from other ichimon to come join his ichimon? There seem to be an awful lot of traditional tatsunami-isegahama kabu that have migrated elsewhere in recent years.

It doesn't seem like it would be hard to see the benefits of that if you're a shisho who is somewhat isolated in that your top recruits will benefit from being able to go do degeiko with the best young talent in the sport. But also I don't know so much about the other ichimon goings-on apart from the administrative/political stuff we hear about.

I dunno. The Hakkaku era seems to have been one of restoration of the traditional peace and quiet behind the scenes, so I don't really see stables changing ichimon anymore. Maybe the way Shikihide-beya did, as part of an off-ichimon successor taking over, but that's about it.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, themistyseas said:

If a shisho recruits 3 nailed on sekitori and then 10 guys who everyone knows are destined to be tsukebito to the 3 sekitori, does that mean his hit rate is 23%? Or does it just mean that he understands the needs of how to run and support a heya and is able to find people who can be pieces in that support structure?

Most of Hakuho's very recent recruiting strategy would indicate he's looking for big hitters and those who don't make it can support the ones that do, but it will be fascinating to see what the churn rate is on the guys that don't make the salaried ranks, especially if they're being recruited with some degree of hype and then end up servants to the guys they thought were their peers.

Onoe-beya comes to mind as a stable that lacked any sort of a tsukebito support structure - at one point shortly after the stable's creation it had four sekitori, two obvious sekitori-to-be, and only two rikishi likely to remain bound to the lower ranks. And it didn't really get that much better over time, outside of the stable losing three of its sekitori-experienced rikishi in the yaocho scandal and reducing its tsukebito needs that way unintentionally.  Of course, a key difference to Hakuho's Miyagino-beya is that Onoe "only" had a strong recruiting pipeline for top-tier talent (via Nihon U. in his case), but wasn't the kind of high-profile oyakata who could interest lesser applicants on his name value alone, like a former yokozuna or ozeki does. And the line to Nihon didn't remain open for more than a few years, so no building of a perpetual powerhouse heya.

But the churn factor may be more relevant anyway. I suspect a big reason that stables like Tamanoi and Sadogatake manage to not only recruit a lot but also hold on to their deshi for a while is that they're running a reasonably upbeat heya atmosphere. I like to think that Hakuho will be on the progressive end of the spectrum as far as that goes, but we used to think that about Takanohana-beya at one point, too, and that one turned out to be more on the hellhole end by most accounts.

Edited by Asashosakari
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Posted (edited)
45 minutes ago, Asashosakari said:

I like to think that Hakuho will be on the progressive end of the spectrum as far as that goes, but we used to think that about Takanohana-beya at one point, too, and that one turned out to be more on the hellhole end by most accounts.

Slightly off-tangent, but I wonder whether having relatively diminutive rikishi helps or hurts with this. On the one hand, it feels like smaller rikishi would be less of a violence risk than larger ones, but Napoleon complexes are a thing, and Ishiura already got involved in a bust up once.

At least having ex-Chikubayama around for a bit will help smooth things over, so maybe we'll only get to find out in 5 years' time whether Hakuhō has managed to build his generation's Musashigawa/Futagoyama or it's T-beya v2.0.

Edited by Seiyashi
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On 13/08/2022 at 07:45, Seiyashi said:

Slightly off-tangent, but I wonder whether having relatively diminutive rikishi helps or hurts with this. On the one hand, it feels like smaller rikishi would be less of a violence risk than larger ones, but Napoleon complexes are a thing, and Ishiura already got involved in a bust up once.

At least having ex-Chikubayama around for a bit will help smooth things over, so maybe we'll only get to find out in 5 years' time whether Hakuhō has managed to build his generation's Musashigawa/Futagoyama or it's T-beya v2.0.

I feel like it's got to hurt tbh. Whether your senior rikishi is big or small can't really matter when you're not allowed to fight back. And yeah I'd much rather be serving Hokuseiho than Ishiura. Ichinojo's got to be a pretty good guy to serve as well - being that big probably scales down the amount of excess energy you've got to slap around juniors.

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On 13/08/2022 at 05:45, Seiyashi said:

Slightly off-tangent, but I wonder whether having relatively diminutive rikishi helps or hurts with this. On the one hand, it feels like smaller rikishi would be less of a violence risk than larger ones, but Napoleon complexes are a thing, and Ishiura already got involved in a bust up once.

At least having ex-Chikubayama around for a bit will help smooth things over, so maybe we'll only get to find out in 5 years' time whether Hakuhō has managed to build his generation's Musashigawa/Futagoyama or it's T-beya v2.0.

To be fair to Ishiura, by the accounts that came out at the time that was a bust up in training (which happens from time to time in every combat sport) rather than an example of more standard hazing or bullying ("power harassment", as it were). Not a great look, particularly at the time given the ongoing bullying and hazing concerns, but I'd suggest it doesn't bear too much reading into. 

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