Gardners only claim to fame was that Karelin, an aging legend had one slight foul against him in a match where neither guy scored a point. If you watched that match, Gardner won for laying on his belly.
Japan has already pushed him up to super hero/godzilla status in their eyes bringing a shiny gold medal into the ring.
Most people in America either have never heard of him or could say no more than "Wasn't he that big fat wrestler in the olympics?"
I don't like Gardner, but I think it's funny how another country is giving him more respect than he's ever seen for his accomplishments.
Personally, I think he's going to get his ass kicked and rightfully so for having no more than a few months of MMA training.
Gardner is probably the highest-profile Olympic wrestler to come out of the Games in years. His was a big underdog story, and the whole frozen toe thing got a ton of press, too.
I'm sure he's easily more well known in the States than he is in Japan, which makes Pride's near-silence on his participation here baffling. They should be promoting the Hell out of it.
great post goku!
he made a mental error this year in the semis. he should have been a two time olympic champion
From what I've heard he's not that great. I'm not a big Greco guy or anything but I heard from others that are that the key to Rulon's Greco success is his girth. When they restart the wrestlers for stalemates, (is it called a clinch?) he is hella hard to keep your arms around so he usually wins those.
why...uh the gold medal, defeating a possibly the greatest wrestler of all time. but thats no big deal, anyone could do it. i was going to pick up a few gold medals myself in the next olympics, its not that hard, i'll just train hard for a few weeks :)
“Gardners only claim to fame was that Karelin, an aging legend had one slight foul against him in a match where neither guy scored a point.”
Rulon beat the most dominant wrestler in history. A man who never lost and international match and won every World and Olympic medal for 12 straight years. Anyone who understands the sport of wrestling knows that many matches are won that way. It was a close match but Karelin couldn't do shit. Keep in mind this aging legend was in the Olympic finals.
“If you watched that match, Gardner won for laying on his belly.”
I think you’re referring to the par terre position. It’s a position that happens almost every Greco match and the same position where Karelin would often pick someone up and throw them on their head. He was “laying” there while Karelin couldn’t score a point.
To prove it wasn't a fluke he won the World Championships the following year, something no US Greco wrestler had ever done.
It doesn’t stop there, after losing a toe and with very little feeling in his feet from frostbite, he beat the World Champion from the year before while wrestling with a broken hand to win a spot on the 2004 Olympic Team. He won a Bronze Medal in Greece making him the only U.S. two time Olympic Medalist in Greco.
"Most people in America either have never heard of him or could say no more than "Wasn't he that big fat wrestler in the Olympics?"
Rulon gets stopped every day on the street by people (not fight fans or wrestling fans) who tell him how much he has inspired him. He is by far the most well known athlete to every compete in MMA and agreed to take a fight on 6 weeks notice even though he had never trained striking or submissions in his life.
My prediction, Yoshida’s getting knocked out.
Not to detract from the man or his accomplishments. Esp. coming back from almost freezing to death and losing a couple digits to win the bronze. That takes balls.
Aside from the small foul committed by Karelin there was absolutely nothing to score in that match. I think nogisoldier hit the nail on the head.
On a side note
Gannon- congrats on the fight of the year! Have you been contacted by any big organizations to fight? Did the Kimbo fight blow up bigger than you thought it would. I can't wait to see you fight on the big stage.
"From what I've heard he's not that great. I'm not a big Greco guy or anything but I heard from others that are that the key to Rulon's Greco success is his girth. When they restart the wrestlers for stalemates, (is it called a clinch?) he is hella hard to keep your arms around so he usually wins those."
Who are these Greco guys you know? That statement is one of the stupidest things I've heard in a while. Rulon wins matches by out working people while keeping great position. He has cardio that few 150 lb guys do.
You know some of them RP. I'm not naming names, and all due respect to Rulon, that's just the talk I heard....before Rulon decided to fight for Pride.
Gardner obviously has a LOT more going for him than his girth- I just pointed out that might be the key to his amazing success at such a high level. I'm not detracting from his heart, his conditioning, work ethic or any of that- but all those things together usually require an 'x' factor to win all the way to the top. I just said his girth may have been that 'x' factor. Once again, the talk I heard was a few months before the Pride announcement.
Karelin may have lost the gold but Gardner did not win the gold. I don't see how someone could say Gardner "beat" Karelin.
Garners skill and conditioning are beyond reproach. His only claim to fame was beating Karelin?!?! Something nobody had done in 12 years and winning an Olympic gold. Ya that sucks. It will be interesting to see how he does in MMA.
karelin was great, but he got beat. stop hating on gardner because he beat your hero. karelin never has made a public statement about how he never lost, so why should you?
All great points, but if Gardner is so well known in America, he wouldn't have to travel to Japan and fight in a venue that he has no experience in. He was in one commercial working on a farm endorsing some type of product a few years back. Anybody have time, look it up on google. He's not getting work here, so he's going to be another side show in Pride. Gold medalists face the ticking clock of the public's interest.
I respect Gardner for his olympic achievements, yada yada yada. But, he's going to be a side show in Pride.
He's the next big Pride ticket since Mark Hunt, who's awful in MMA. That last fight was a joke. Bull Hurly from Over The Top competes in an entire arm wrestling tournament, loses to Lincoln Hawk, then goes into the ring and pounds on Hunt, stands up and falls in exhaustion giving Hunt his "first win".
"He's not getting work here, so he's going to be another side show in Pride."
Actually he's getting a lot of work here. Every week he does corporate speeches and appearances abd gets paid well for it.
"Gold medalists face the ticking clock of the public's interest."
Isn't this true for everyone who has achieved some fame?
Nogisoldier - I agree with with you. There are many factors that contribute to success. Every tall person can't play ball like Michael Jordan.
Rulon is one of the busiest people I've ever met - to say he's not getting work in the states, is pretty uninformed. He turned down an offer to work with the WWE. He isn't going to Japan because he can't get work elsewhere - he made the choice to go to Japan.
Well I, for one, hope he learns how to throw down like Hendo- a tall order in a short amount of time- and whoops some ass! I think Yoshida is going to have a tough time working takedowns against the man.
Dirty Boxing, Dirty Boxing, Dirty Boxing!
What's this? A forum member admitting he's wrong?
I'm quite misinformed about his activity as seen in the last post. I don't follow WWE or motivational speaking, so there's my loss.
This is not going to be a good fight. Put Silva in the main event and I'll pay.