The Scorch has finally arrived in the Alamo City, though a shocking high 60’s (the temperature, NOT the age or condition) popped up overnight this week. To all you dads out there, a belated but sincere Fathers Day. Moms had the primary First Watch for ALL of us, but a boy, girl OR a dog without a Dad is probably gonna grow up with a lot of mutt in him/her.
TEAM USA READY TO MINE PRECIOUS METAL AT THE WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS
In the city formerly known as Astana, all the baaad matmen and women in the World will chase titles come September. ‘Muricas fixin to bust a blast double or three and pretzel some poor fools from somewhere. Freestyle Team USA Men has gone Gold and Silver the last 2x out, and we are loooking gooood, amigo. Yes, as of right now, we are down 2 world champs. Yes, only 1 of those 2 can yet make the team, 79kg World Champ Kyle Dake. STILL liking our chances at a team award, and NOT for congeniality either. 57kg Daton Fix not medaling? Posiblamente. Daton Fix not earning team points? You be trippin, son. 61kg Tyler Graff will go all John Daly on somebody from somewhere. Grip ‘Em ‘n rip ’em, baby. Now, WHOEVERER reps the Red, White and Blue at 65KG* will medal. This is not news. Who WILL plant the U.S. flag on the 65kg medal stand ….stay tuned. 65 KG challenger, 2x NCAA champ and US Open winner, Cornell star Yianni Diakomihalis, deserves a 3rd match with current USA 65kg team rep Zain Retherford, says Cornell Coach Rob Koll. The Scribe echoes that sentiment. We await the results of a formal protest to Retherfords 2 match sweep. At 70kg, James Green is due for another fine showing. Solid points and a medal at this weight class. The next weight class is 74kg. You knew that. Jordan Burroughs. The world sees that. We like what we know. They don’t like what they see. Oh, say, can you see….? Sure, I knew you could.
79kg will be fine, same as 65. Wether its current World Champ Kyle Dake or challenger Alex Dieringer, we will medal, probably make the finals, good shot at winning. With a young, 2x NCAA champ and World medal winner, Zahid Valencia, sitting in the 3 spot. For now. That’s the kind of depth we need and are, obviously, achieving.
What happens when 86kg of Baltimore bad-@ssery finally gets to rep Team USA? Bad things, man, bad things.** For the rest of the World. So, in honor of Pat Downeys unique style, this MOST inappropriate nursery rhyme. You know the tune..
“Here comes Patrick Downey now,
86kg of Hell, AND HOW,
Slammin n slidin n tauntin all the way
Got the whole world in his sights
Laughin n grabbin his bulging tights
Hoppin up on that medal stand, hey, hey…
TOLD you it was inappropriate. DIDN’T say where he was grabbing. That’s YOUR thought process. And probably his.
92kg. Defending World Champion J’den Cox. Like somebody at 74kg. Only bigger. Stronger. Faster. Younger. Harder to score on. With at least as impressive a world view. And, if he chooses, as many world medals some day. Though he’s more likely to seek an office at the U.N. THEN we can feel good about their funding. Sorry, Dr. Farmer***, but you can’t do it alone.
97kg is, of course, the home weight of one Kyle (Captain America) Snyder. Multiple World Champ, Olympic Champ, and current defending World Silver Medalist. Or, none of those things. As “Cap” has repeatedly asserted, as a world champion wrestler, you defend nothing. You only reach your current goals or you do not. And, through it all, you work to improve. Has Snyder improved enough to reclaim the World title in 2019? Will he face the Dagestan Destroyer, World Champ Abdulrashid Sadulaev, for the Gold Medal? Does Foghorn LegHorn make a really bad narrator?****
125kg American double World Bronze medalist Nick Gwaizdowski had maybe the toughest 2 match set at the “Final X” team wrestle offs. The Gwizz, as he is often called, won 2 straight battles with Gable Steveson by criteria after both matches ended in a tie. Not sure from this viewpoint if that was Gables improvement happening faster than Nick’s, or if just what’s been expected, Steveson taking over as US #1, being delayed for a year or two.
AND ON THAT NOTE….
Burying the lede is not something practiced here at Hand Raised. Having said that, saying more than what has been headlined about Minnesota All American Hvwt. and Team USA Freestyle Mens #2 Gable Steveson would be simply wrong. Steveson and a Minnesota wrestling teammate, Dylan Martinez, were both arrested several days ago. The original and only charge so far in the continuing investigation is disturbing in nature. According to the fine reporting of Rochelle Olson of the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the Hennepin County Attorneys office declined to file charges as of Tuesday afternoon the 18th, and both Gable and Dylan were summarily released. The New York Daily News, The Fresno Bee, TMZ, The Star Tribune, (as noted), KSTP TV, Intermat and The Open Mat have all provided coverage of the story in depth, some from its break Saturday. Flowrestling, unarguably at this point the premiere wrestling information link, were blatant in their downplaying of the news and defiant, as always, in their stance. Play back the end portion of Flowrestling Radio Live, their twice weekly podcast, from Tuesday the 18th for confirmation if needed. Disappointing but not suprising.
‘CUE THE LOCAL ANGLE
A recent visitor to that (darn popular) BBQ restaurant on Blanco Road in the Alamo City where the Scribe smiles at files of customers brought serious academic chops from the land of the Chippewas. Jennifer Young, BA, MSA, Associate Director of Multicultural Recruitment at CMU (AND a proud Chippewa grad, we might add) stopped by a few months back for an event and some fine S TX meat n sides. Or maybe just our darn friendly atmosphere. Seriously, the gracious, outgoing and lovely Ms. Young made “Pleasant” small talk and promised to follow Coach Borellis matmen closely as they approach a rebound season in the newly expanded MAC EWL. (Pronounced MAC COOL, according to wrestling savant David Mirikitani.) Bonus points and a ceremonial shoulder tap with a Claymore if you know who Mac Cool was.
SORRY, WRONG NUMBER
Or e mail address. Or something. So far repeated emails and a phone call or two for interview requests to the Alamo Area Wrestling Officials Association have gone unanswered. A last minute website check revealed the dreaded “Under Construction” banner, so there’s that. To the rescue, a wrestling mom from Churchill (SA) HS, who has connected us to Charger Associate Head Wrestling Coach Brian Hawkins. Coach H. reached out with praise for earlier writings and has received the questions.
See you later this Summer!
*Hmm, KG defaults to, wait for it, KGB…”IS RUSSIA. PLEASE GO BACK OFFICIAL WRESTLING SITE NOW.” Maybe no please.
**Dennis Hopper as a crazed NFL referee in an epic series of 90s TV commercials.
***utterly shameless name dropping by the Scribe, the once upon a time Captain of his High School High-Q TV quiz team. Whose most talented, if not at that moment most brilliant^^, member was/is Dr. Paul Farmer. Duke, Harvard. MD, PhD, World Infectious Disease foe, battler of famine and cultural ignorance, international multi lingual author, lecturer, scientific icon, Tolkien aficionado, and superb boat bailer-outer. Though the last accolade may be a bit overstated.
****YES, and just watch the Geico commercial. Don’t eat or drink while you do though, son. I say, I say, it could be trouble..
^^that would have been ROTC Leader, Mathematics genius, and Co-Captain David P. Dwiggins, PhD, University of Memphis. D@mn, how did we not win EVERYTHING? About that…..