Sumo lacks marquee rivalries of recent times

Sumo | INSIDE SUMO Mar 7, 2019

Sumo lacks marquee rivalries of recent times

by John Gunning

The upcoming Spring Grand Sumo Tournament seems to have everything going for it. The basho kicks off with a wealth of storylines. One is a tale of vengeance as Takakeisho seeks to correct the record on his controversial non-promotion to sumo's second-highest rank. Others involve veterans like ...

Terutsuyoshi adds flair to makuuchi division

Sumo | INSIDE SUMO Feb 27, 2019

Terutsuyoshi adds flair to makuuchi division

by John Gunning

It's late February, which means all 650 or so wrestlers of the Japan Sumo Association have decamped to Kansai and are deep in preparation for the upcoming Spring Tournament. The Osaka Basho holds a special significance for many rikishi, as it's the meet where the ...

Wrestlers put aside differences to promote U.S. sumo

Sumo | INSIDE SUMO Feb 13, 2019

Wrestlers put aside differences to promote U.S. sumo

by John Gunning

Kelly Gneiting is a religious fundamentalist. The 205-kg bearded giant is also an outspoken member of the ultraconservative Independent American Party, whose social media feeds are filled with inflammatory posts about homosexuality, abortion, politics and vaccinations. Matthew Davis is a cannabis-promoting, dreadlocked atheist who has the ...

In-arena experience provides thrills for fans

Sumo | INSIDE SUMO Jan 10, 2019

In-arena experience provides thrills for fans

by John Gunning

Why do people attend sumo tournaments? To watch the bouts and see their favorite rikishi in action? Sure. Those aren't the only reasons though, and for many people they're not even the main ones. A sumo basho, especially one at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo, is unlike any other ...

Change in stable can revive wrestlers' careers

Sumo | INSIDE SUMO Dec 5, 2018

Change in stable can revive wrestlers' careers

by John Gunning

Takakeisho, winner of this year's Kyushu tournament, was pictured alongside his stablemaster on Nov. 26 holding up a large red sea bream and drinking sake from an outsized trophy at a celebratory event. While there was nothing noteworthy in the scene itself — such parties ...