Writers from Iran and Japan also picked Herbert. I don't see him as a favorite either and definitely am I surprised by the picks for Zadick, although he does have a World Silver on his resume.
55 kg Peter M?dos(HUN)
60 kg Islam-Bekka(Russia)
66 kg Mansurov(AZE)
74 kg Kvirkvelia(GEO)
84 kg Mishine(RUS)
96 kg Khustov(RUS)
don't pick mansurov and albiev. they will not participate.
No Albiev? Why?
Do we know for a fact that Taymazov will be competing? If he is the match with Makhov will be awesome even though Taymazov is out of his prime.
Aldatov has beaten Herbert- badly- twice. That's why he's my pick to win. Herbert has also lost pretty one-sided matches to Urishev and to the Cuban Salas this year. Herbert has proven to be an inconsistent freestyle wrestler over the years, here's hoping he turns it up at the right time. Mind you, Aldatov is the same way, he may be the most pinnable world champion ever. Certainly we won't get a much more wide-open final than Aldatov vs Herbert.
Sokhiev is on Uzbekistan's roster to compete, so he might be there.
I would LOVE to see a Taymazov/Makhov match.
That's good news regarding Sokhiev. As much as I want Herbert to win it all, I also want there to be the highest level of competition, and I'm sure Jake agrees. He has discussed facing Sokhiev again on FloWrestling. Is there video of these Herbert-Aldatov matches? And what were the specific results (ie score, when, where, etc)? Aldatov is so incredibly skilled, his sweep single is masterful, I'm just still waiting to see him compete as effectively at 84kg as he did at 74kg. At least he's exciting though, as opposed to everyone's 74kg favorite Tsargush who is a fantastic technician and great wrestler, but I wish there were another elite wrestler to dethrone him and I don't think there is (and I'm saying this after only one year which indicates how dull his style is to me). But I digress...
Taymazov is such a dynamic heavyweight when he's hitting on all cylinders. The Makhov match would be amazing, but I would really hope the Russian bear has stepped it up since Europeans because he has been pretty underwhelming this spring. I really thought that after manhandling Masoumi at Worlds he was one of the best wrestlers period, but undersized (at least in terms of height) Masoumi really close the gap recently and the Turk wrestler gave him a hell of a match at Europeans. I was shocked by how well Cakiroglu(sp?) competed considering he's been on the scene for a while, but Makhov was not the dominant heavyweight that we thought. Plus I can't help considering his loss to Gatsalov in that challenge match... Meh