February 5, 2010

Asashoryu Forced Out--Sumo Slimes Itself

Loved by sumo fans of all races, reviled by the Japanese sumo establishment, there was none better in the ring than Asashoryu. Unlike others, he stayed true to his Mongolian roots in and out of the ring. The day they forced him to retire, is the day sumo died for me, the excitement is dead. We've still got Hakuho and Harumafuji, but neither one brings the volatile mixture of speed, power, charisma, and barely controlled violence to the ring as Asashoryu did. When he turned and pounded his belt before each match you know he was good to go. I don't think too many of the wrestlers that had to face him will miss that mighty thump. The thing that really pisses me off is the fact that he was only, what, 7 or 8 wins away from being the greatest champion of all time. A flawed tragic hero now leaves the rotting corpse of sumo behind, clearly one time when a man is bigger than the sport. Long live the King!!

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