Everyone's heard the cliches. "The best defense is a good offense." "The more you're in on his legs the less he's in on yours." But in 2017, most folks know that both having a great offense and great defense can be equally effective.
David Taylor's offensive output is on a different level right now than the rest of the world heading into the Senior World Team Trials on Saturday in Lincoln, NE. We saw him hand fight three Olympic medalists into the ground at the World Cup. I took a look at his most recent tournament, the U.S. Open, and counted the amount of "committed leg attacks" that he took versus how many he actually scored on, how many points he scored, and if his opponent score on him.
What's a committed attack? It's hard to define, especially for someone like Taylor. He hand fights and level changes so much that sometimes you're not sure whether he is slapping at a leg just to straighten his opponent's legs or if he actually wants to grab them and score.
Leg Attacks Taken By Taylor: 32
Times Taylor Scored When Attacking His Opponents Legs: 16
1-Point Step-Outs Scored By Taylor On His Own Leg Attacks: 5
2-Point Takedowns Scored By Taylor On His Own Leg Attacks: 7
4-Point Takedowns Scored By Taylor On His Own Leg Attacks: 4
Total Points Scored Scored By Taylor On His Own Leg Attacks: 35
Average Amount Of Points Scored Scored By Taylor On His Own Leg Attacks: 1.09
Number Of Times Opponent Scored On Taylor's Leg Attacks: 2
Total Points Scored Against Taylor On His Own Leg: 4
Average Amount Of Points Scored On Taylor On His Own Leg Attacks: 0.13
J'den Cox has some of the most insane leg attack defense that I've ever seen. It's the perfect combination of solid baseline wrestling and super creative scrambling. Finding good numbers to support J'den's high-level defense are a little bit harder to locate. I took a similar sample size using a combination of last year's Olympic Team Trials and early-round matchups of the Olympic Games Qualifier and here's how J'den's defense stacks up.
Leg Attacks Taken On J'den: 34
Times That Opponent Scored On Their Own Leg Attack: 3
1-Point Step-Outs Scored By J'den's Opponents On Their Own Leg Attacks: 2
2-Point Takedowns Scored By J'den's Opponents On Their Own Leg Attacks: 1
4-Point Takedowns Scored By J'den's Opponents On Their Own Leg Attacks: 0
Times That J'den Scored On Opponents Attacks: 10
Total Points Scored By Opponents When They Attack J'den's Legs: 4
Average Points Scored On J'den When Opponent Attacks His Legs: 0.11
Amount Of Points Scored By J'den When Opponent Attacks His Legs: 13
Average Points Scored By J'den When Opponents Attacks His Legs: 0.38
Keep in mind that these numbers aren't perfect. The sample size may vary from year to year based on rule changes, not to mention that three of the matches that I used for J'den were against the same person (Kyle Dake).
In the five matches that I used as the sample, the only match that J'den lost against Dake was match two of the best-of-three finals. Dake didn't take one committed leg attack until the last 80 seconds of the match. In the last minute, he fired off three attacks scoring a takedown on one of them that put him in the lead with 43 seconds left in the match. Dake employed similar tactics in match three, not making a concerted effort at Cox's legs until later in the match, but J'den scored early to afford him some breathing room.
These numbers add up to one thing... Saturday night is going to be AWESOME!
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