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Guest Mina

Kotooshu won

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Tumppi - I didn't see your question.

I was talking about the pages on NSK's site that get updated with latest results as the matches progress.

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I'm far more impressed with Kotooshu now than I was with Asashoryu even when he rose to Yokozuna (with absolutely no resistance present at the time).

I doubt you were ever impressed by Asashoryu (I mean...not even slightetst).

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Asa promotion to Ozeki was no easy breeze at all. Here are the records:

Ozeki promotion

Haru 2002

Y Musashimaru (13-2)

Y Takanohana (0-0-15)

O Tochiazuma (10-5)

O Chiyotaikai (7-8)

O Musoyama (10-5)

O Kaio (12-3)

S Asashoryu (11-4)

Natsu 2002

Y Musashimaru (13-2)

Y Takanohana (0-0-15)

O Kaio (11-4)

O Tochiazuma (10-5)

O Musoyama (9-5-1)

O Chiyotaikai (11-4)

S Asashoryu (11-4)

Nagoya 2002

Y Musashimaru (10-5)

Y Takanohana (0-0-15)

O Kaio (0-4-11)

O Chiyotaikai (14-1)

O Tochiazuma (3-2-10)

O Musoyama (0-0-15)

S Asashoryu (12-3)

The first two bashos were really difficult. All ozekis and Maru were performing OK. The third basho was not so hard (only Maru and Taikai). Osh third one was more difficult, but the two first were clearly easier.

Now Asa's yokozuna promotion was really "easy":

Yokozuna promotion

Kyushu 2002

Y Musashimaru (4-2-9)

Y Takanohana (0-0-15)

O Kaio (2-2-11)

O Chiyotaikai (6-3-6)

O Asashoryu (14-1)

O Musoyama (10-5)

O Tochiazuma (8-7)

Hatsu 2003

Y Musashimaru (0-0-15)

Y Takanohana (4-4-7)

O Asashoryu (14-1)

O Musoyama (8-7)

O Tochiazuma (0-6-9)

O Chiyotaikai (0-0-15)

O Kaio (0-0-15)

If Asa stays fit, it probably won't be the same for Osh!

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I'm far more impressed with Kotooshu now than I was with Asashoryu even when he rose to Yokozuna (with absolutely no resistance present at the time).

I doubt you were ever impressed by Asashoryu (I mean...not even slightetst).

I'm impressed by Asashoryu. I was more impressed with him when he was on the verge of Ozeki, than I am with Kotooshu now.

However. I think it's pretty interesting that Kotooshu beat Asashoryu. I saw something that I haven't seen in Asashoryu in a few years. He looked human in that loss. In almost every other loss he still looked like the Mongolian Fireball. Like he beat himself, more than anything, and his confidence wasn't ever threatened. Afterwards, you could see his mind spinning, replaying the match, and pinpointing the exact moment his concentration lapsed. When he loses, there is always this look of moderate surprise, and a little sort of confusion on his face. Like he's thinking to himself, "Now, why did I do THAT?" It's always got a little of that Asashoryu aggression mixed in there too.

Not this time. When he stood up, he had a totally different look on his face. He was not the least bit surprised. He was flat beaten, and he was beaten by yoritaoshi. He was totally resigned to the fact. He looked like someone just kicked sand in his face, and there wasn't a thing he could do about it. Asashoryu losing by yoritaoshi is just a major surprise to me. He was actually overpowered. "Frontal Crush Out" ??? That's unthinkable.

Kotooshu must be a physically very strong. Even with the advantage of the grip, it's really hard to believe how he just plowed forward and down into Asashoryu like that.

I grudgingly revise my assessment of Kotooshu from a couple days ago. I still don't like his tendency to move to the side, or to slap. (Not for any "philosophical" reasons, though. I just don't think he will be effective in the long term with it.) If he reverts, he will get caught more and more often, and beaten because it will be hard to get into position when he's moving away like that. But after today, I guess I have to change my suggestion that he won't be better than the Ozeki we have now, to "he should be just a tiny, tiny, tiny bit better than, uh, some other Ozeki's."

I agree that it might be just a bit premature to start calling him a "formidable rival" just yet. He's good, but I need more convincing. Let him hang on to Ozeki without Kadoban trouble for a while, and challenge for the yusho for the next few basho's and I'll feel better about him.

As it stands, he did beat Asashoryu this basho, but he lost to Kakizoe, Tamanoshima and Kisenosato. That says something.

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But after today, I guess I have to change my suggestion that he won't be better than the Ozeki we have now, to "he should be just a tiny, tiny, tiny bit better than, uh, some other Ozeki's."

Tiny bit, huh? Well, I hope he's more than a tiny bit better than the current 'kadoban krew' we have there -- and frankly, for the last three basho he was a whole lot better, despite his sumo style. I'm not a huge fan of Osh in particular (although I definitely do no dislike him) -- I'm just happy that the vacuum in the ozeki rank might be closed now.

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Not this time. When he stood up, he had a totally different look on his face. He was not the least bit surprised. He was flat beaten, and he was beaten by yoritaoshi. He was totally resigned to the fact. He looked like someone just kicked sand in his face, and there wasn't a thing he could do about it. Asashoryu losing by yoritaoshi is just a major surprise to me. He was actually overpowered. "Frontal Crush Out" ??? That's unthinkable.

No, that hasn't happened since ... let's see ... last basho. (Neener, neener...)

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