Kisenosato: Path to Yokozuna? … or Samuel de Gama: Words of a Madman

I’m sitting  here at work chatting away to fellow gentlemen about some sumo.  Eventually I come to a realization of what may happen.  I very well know that in about two hours my theory can be utterly disproved but hell I’m not the first gentleman on this site to be ridiculed.

Here’s the theory..

I don’t think its a stretch to think that Kisenosato is being prepared to head up.  Previously I only thought that it was to be an Ozeki, but thinking more on it …perhaps Yokozuna.  In the wake of public realizations of bout-fixing, two rikishi were promoted, Geek and Kise.  From before this I think that the Sumo Assoc. were thinking about doing something with Kise, and Geek just happened to be in the right place at the right time.  They focused on Geek first for promotion in the short term to take eyes off of Kise for any possible bout fixing. So when it happened, there was a big uproar with Geek being promoted and the next month Kise being promoted was just an after thought (not really but you get the picture).

After talking with Briton-Meyer, I theorize that the Sumo Association perhaps are putting pressure on Team Mongolia to not yusho this basho.  In other words Hakuho has to lose at least once.  Yesterday we know that he lost to Kak.  Hakuho probably knew he had to lose and decided to give a handy to his compatriot.  Now this is where today can break my theory:

1. Kise will beat Hakuho today. -> This puts Hakuho completely out of the running for yusho, and it positively contributes to Kise promotion cred.

2. Haruma will beat Baruto today. -> Briton-Meyer pointed out it wasn’t essential , but I think it will happen.  This allows Team Mongolia to make up more ground for Hakuho’s forced losses and causes Baruto to drop to a tie with Kise.

Now if these two things happen I predict the two will fight against each other either Saturday or Sunday. Kise will win and win the yusho.

This will ultimately continue the media uproar and in the next basho show a higher sumo turn out.  Then maybe in a few more basho with Kise scoring high marks … a promotion to Yokozuna.

Which will overall help Sumo’s popularity in Japan. So, who really loses…right?

7 responses to “Kisenosato: Path to Yokozuna? … or Samuel de Gama: Words of a Madman

  1. I like it. This is the kind of post a sit at home waiting for. You are swinging some hefty stones today de Gama. I just poured myself a nice big glass of whiskey to enjoy this post.

    I disagree with you about Harry and Bart. A great plan has to be simple. I think JSA knew they could work with Team Mongolia and so I think that is their only input into this basho. As de Gama said, I think they told Team Mongolia to give Kise a pass.

    I think Baruto is not in on the conniving. He is just out there doing his thing. What JSA thinks it knows is that Kise can beat Bart, but he can’t beat Hakuho. So, I think they are hoping Bart goes into the final day with his perfect record intact, at which time someone is going to whisper in his ear that he should let Kise win the first bout to equalize things out and build the tension. Then, I think the final bout will be a true struggle – Bart might walk away with the yusho or Kise might walk away with it – but JSA is betting that Kise will prevail in that final bout.

    I say Hakuho takes a fall to Kisenosato today and Haruma takes a fall to Baruto.

    de Gama. Nice post.

  2. While the theory is plausible, I think Hakuho’s loss yesterday was due to the Kak being on his game more than anything. Yeah, I will admit that beating Hakuho now after losing to him 20 times in a row looks suspicious, but I just don’t think the champ is that good of an actor. Granted with the bouts he was throwing kise and the geek a few basho back he could have just improved his acting skillz. WIth a z.

  3. Samuél de Gama

    I guess its the ramblings of a madman… haha

  4. Well that was the most fun I have had all basho. Hakuho won despite my prediction, but what was with Haruma’s performance.

    I am willing to take this basho at face value for now… and it is shaping up to be an interesting final four days. I want Homasho to get his kachikoshi, but tomorrow will tell. Dare I hope?

    Will Hakuho fall to Harumafuji, Baruto fall to Hakuho, and Kisenosato progress onwards without loss? Good basho, this.

  5. Nice post, buddy. I, like Briton-Meyer, Like the cojones in it. Unfortunately, I’m with Montana here, Hakuho losing to Kakuryu was straight up. The Kak was on his shit. But you have a good theory here.

    I think If anything Team Mongolia is going to fall to Team Mongolia, Kakuryu was due for a win over Hakuho, especially since Team Mongolia was nice enough not to fuck around too much with Kise and the Geek’s promotions. Anyway, it’s much more plausible for Harumafuji to sneak one over on the chief than Baruto. If I were the JSA I would go the plausibly deniable route. Bart has a grand total of 3 wins over Hakuho, where Harry’s got 9 not including playoffs.

    This however means that Bart needs to lose 3. Which wouldn’t be a stretch. He throws a bone to the Geek and Oshu and predictably loses to Hakuho. Not outside the realm of possibility. This will force a senshuraku ketteisen for Kise and Hakuho (assuming Kise wins his last few bouts), and Bart goes home with a more than respectable 12-3 and maybe the promise of a yusho in May or July. You never know though, maybe the now-desperate Geek will pull one over on Hakuho, but i think that’s less likely.

    So I guess my prediction goes like this. 9% Bart sneaks a yusho in. 10% Kise gets a miracle yusho 80% Hakuho gets number 22. 1% Geek gets his 10.

    In short Kise being groomed for Yokozuna is not too crazy an idea. I mean they handed him ozeki on a fucking silver platter, so why not once more into the breach.

  6. I love all the intrigue. And, I have gotten over my naivete to think the JSA are all out for the good of the sport – all the time. But I don’t think anyone is going to convince anyone that Kisenosato is Yokozuna material. The machinations of HOW he would get there – or how they could be hidden from the leering eye – seem kind of irrelevant to me. (And I say this with much love for Blinky and all respect for everyone posting here)

    Let’s look at history (forgive any numbers that are one or two off – I was hurriedly counting off sumoreference):
    1) The 69th Yokozuna, Hakuho, took 39 basho to make Yokozuna – only had ONE rank set-back in top division, and as of today has an 80.7% career win percentage.
    2) The 68th Yokozuna, Asashoryu, took only 26 basho to tie on the swan – only had ONE rank set-back in top division, and retired with a 79.8% career win percentage.
    3) The 67th Yokozuna, Musashimaru, took a very long 60 basho – but was Ozeki for like 5 years of that and won yushos, and finished with a respectable 72% career win rate.
    4) The 66th Yokozuna, Wakanohana, took an extremely long 63 basho – but had won 5 yusho by the time he was granted the top rank, and finished with a very good 67.4% career win percentage. (Arguably the weakest Yokozuna of the data set who only managed 4 respectable basho after the promotion AND NEVER WON ANOTHER YUSHO.)
    5) The 65th Yokozuna, Takanohana, rose in 42 basho, won 7 yusho before promotion, and retired with a cool 75% win percentage.

    All this brings me to Kisenosato … “The Kid” … “The Great Japanese Hope (of Yesteryear) …
    As of this basho he has 59 recorded in the database, his “rise” could not even be called a rise because he has bounced around in rank like an octopus’s soccer ball (they have 8 legs – get it?), and his career winning percentage is … 57% … that’s a GOOD rate. That’s a lifetime kachi-koshi … but that doesn’t cut it.

    So … maybe a meteoric rise doesn’t HAVE to happen these days. OK. What’s DIFFERENT about Kisenosato now versus 2 years ago? He hasn’t packed on 20 pounds of muscle to win those lock-up bouts he lost before. Has he climbed to the top of Mt Fuji to have the ninja monkeys teach him new Ju-Jitsu? Doubt it. He’s only won by 22 different kimarate. (Asashoryu won with like 45 – including an “unknown” – which is what ninja monkeys teach you if you bring them Mongolian bananas!) And the competition around him has gotten better – not worse. Strike 1, 2, and 3.

    All this brings me to my point… even if the JSA could engineer Kisenosato’s promotion to Yokozuna – it would only end in an embarrassing retirement within a year or so (see Wakanohana). Because Hakuho has his records and legacy to think about. Harumafuji’s wife will be asking him why HE isn’t a Yokozuna too as she calls out Asashoryu’s name in bed. Baruto is just so simple that he won’t get the memo and will accidentally spoil things with his man-mountainness (look, Boss, I found a big silver cup!). And, if one of the kids coming along is on track for the top – they will need to rise up and eliminate any dead wood there. (STILL-undefeated Sakumayama!!! Tatsu!!!)

    Again, I’m a fan of Kisenosato. And I will be the first to just shake my head and shake your hand if this goes down. But man, what a weird situation it would create …

  7. When I watch for Yaocho, I watch the bout and try to put myself in the loser’s mawashi. Disguising, indeed, but it really helps to know which bouts are yaocho, which are clean, and which were half-assed.

    Hakuho-Kakuryu was not yaocho, but it was certainly half-assed on Hakuho’s part. More specific, I think Hakuho was fighting that bout with a bit of careless arrogance, thinking he could still win with an outside grip. He was flaunting, as he is human (on his mother’s side).

    I don’t want to take anything away from the Kak because he fought a perfect bout, and it would have been a hell of a lot better if Hakuho was going at 100%.

    I’m hoping that Hakuho has enough pride that he’s not going to ‘allow’ another rikishi, Japanese, Mongolian, or whatever, to join him at the Yokozuna rank as long as he can help it.

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