Arm-Spin Awards: Freestyle Edition
As always there is the disclaimer that I don't have time to watch everything, especially since my video keeps cutting out. This is what I have so far.
Best wrestler: I think it's pretty unanimous that Jordan Burroughs is now the #1 p4p in the world with two straight undefeated years, beating Tsargush and Goudrazi each time. Just awesome. And Taymazov makes the books at the most decorated freestyle Olympian ever.
Outstanding wrestler: Asgarov, Azerbayjan. Kudukhov hasn't looked great all year, but wow... that final match, including the flying gutwrench takedown, was incredible. Also beat a red hot Scott and last year's bronze medallist in good matches. Honorable mention goes to Yomemitsu from Japan; a ton of big studs had really crappy draws, but he turned his into a gold medal.
Best match: "all I see is Gentry" was the catchphrase for Canada, and it turned out to be for a good reason. I watched Gentry/Burroughs live (on TV) and it had me on the edge of my seat... so close. In the first, JB totally suckered him with a nasty double and then scored again before Gentry got one late. In the second Gentry scored on a low shot after a crazy scramble. Burroughs got one back with a head-snap cradle, and Gentry was in deep on another scramble when time ran out.
Burroughs/Tsargush was great too, of course.
Best non-winner. Ok, so Espinal probably isn't the 2nd best guy at 84 (that would be Lashgari) but how can you not love his preformance? Hit an arm spin and a bodylock throw on the heavily favored Mashgarvilli, and then launches Gatsiev for 5 in the semis. Unbelievable for one of the unlikeliest medallists ever.
Golden Pylon: In the absence of a really boring champion, I'm giving this to Canada's Haislan Garcia for taking the gold and bronze medallists to 3 periods each without scoring a regulation point. Also had a bizarre sequence vs Japan. I don't know for sure, but it looked like Haislan stuffed his hand into Japan's mouth and face to stop a takedown, called a time out, and when penalized a point he squeezed his finger until the scratch he had bled sufficiently to show the referees. Maybe I'm wrong and it was, in fact, Yonemitsu's fault, but I found the whole thing pretty ironic as Garcia has often been accused of having his hands in other's faces, and of biting opponents.
A special antipylon award given to the entire 84 kg class; crazy, crazy action throughout the bracket. Well done!
Best move: there's a whole thread on the college board about this, but for my money it doesn't get any better than a 5 pt slam to fall to win a medal with a few seconds left (Lopez over Hasaynov).
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