125kg World Team Trials Preview: It's Coon's Year

Tony Rotundo
125 kg Rnd Of 16 - Ben Durbin, TMWC vs Adam Coon, NYAC/MWC

With the World Team Trials challenge tournament finally upon us, all eyes are on 125kg. The deepest and most interesting weight at the U.S. Open in Las Vegas carries over to Rochester, Minnesota this weekend.

The world finally got the senior level debut of Gable Steveson, and he ended up fourth, losing to Adam Coon and Dom Bradley. The Coon match wasn't close, but Steveson was leading with fewer than 10 seconds remaining.

WATCH 2018 WORLD TEAM TRIALS LIVE ON FLO

WHEN: May 19-20 | WHERE: Rochester, MN

Coon would go on to beat Jake Varner in the Open finals, granting him a bye to the best-of-three finals on Saturday, May 20th. Whether it's Coon, or someone who comes out of the challenge tournament, they'll have Nick Gwiazdowski in Final X Lehigh on June 23rd.

In Final X: Nick Gwiazdowski

In Trials Finals: Adam Coon

WTT Qualifiers

Weight

Name

RTC

Club

Qualifier

125kg

Jake Varner

Nittany Lion WC


US Open runner-up

125kg

Dom Bradley

NWTC

Sunkist Kids

US Open 3rd place

125kg

Gable Steveson


Minnesota Storm

US Open 4th place

125kg

Tony Nelson


Minnesota Storm

US Open 5th place

125kg

Tanner Hall


Sunkist Kids

US Open 6th place

125kg

Mike Kosoy

Wolfpack WC

Titan Mercury

US Open 7th place

Commentary: What a year it's been for Adam Coon. He takes out Kyle Snyder in the dual meet, makes his second NCAA final, and wins the U.S. Open. He seems vastly improved since the last time he wrestled freestyle, which already may have been his best style. If he makes it to Final X, it will be on the strength of his knee pull single and body lock.

125 kg Final - Adam Coon, NYAC vs Jacob Varner, NLWC


Varner is a long way from his 2012 Olympic gold medal. But his most recent competition prior to the Open was in the 2016 World Cup as the heavyweight for Team USA. Varner went through the guys who finished fifth and sixth in Vegas, meaning he did not wrestle Bradley or Steveson. The offense he did display is even more mitigated by the big bodies at heavyweight.

Bradley dominated his opponents early on at the Open, but then totaled just six points from the semis on. He is more active than Zach Rey, who frequently won matches 1-1, and has a solid gut wrench, but may need to up his pace to topple Coon or Varner.

The difficult thing for Gable may be that he has to compete three days in a row after deciding to do both juniors and seniors. However, he very much proved he can still hit his snaps on seniors, as well as fire off shots and even launch a couple guys for 4s and 5s. His semis rematch with Dom Bradley will say a lot about the kinds of adjustments he can make.

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125kg 3rd - Gable Steveson, MN Storm vs Dominique Bradley, Sunkist Kids WC


Last year in Linclon, Tony Nelson knocked off Zach Rey. He will have a similarly difficult task in Jake Varner in the semis, assuming he gets by Mike Kosoy in the quarters. Tanner Hall will get a crack at avenging his 11-0 tech to Steveson in the quarters.

I think Gable Steveson is the greatest high school wrestler of all-time, and has a great shot to be a four-time NCAA champ. I also think he will have a Tervel-like run on the senior level of making world teams and winning medals. Getting teched by Coon may wind up being the worst senior level loss of his career. But I think between also wrestling juniors and the size of Bradley and Varner, Steveson is just a hair short right now of being able to knock them off.

WTT Previews: 57kg61kg65kg70kg74kg79kg86kg92kg97kg

As I mentioned at the top, Varner did not have to wrestle either Bradley or Steveson in Vegas, so the winner of that one may just vanquish Varner quickly. But that semi might take too much out of the victor, leaving Varner a little fresher. If he faces Bradley, the over/under on that one is about four points. With Gable, he'll need to score more.

Either way, Adam Coon is a mountain, moves people around like a tractor, and clearly seems to be in the best shape of his life. It's his time to make Final X and get himself another rematch with Nick Gwiazdowski. I'm not sure when it's coming, but he'll get his body lock a couple times on Sunday.

Nomad's Picks

Trials Finals: Coon over Varner two matches to none

Challenge Finals: Varner over Bradley

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Tech Notes: Victoria Anthony vs. Whitney Conder

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2018 Greco-Roman World Team Trials Preview

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Today marks the beginning of the 2018 Greco-Roman World Team Trials in Tulsa, OK. Athletes competing in the classic style will finish out the challenge tournament today to determine who will wrestle in Friday's finals. Wrestling starts at 10 AM Central.

Betting Odds For Final X Bethlehem

125 kg Final - Adam Coon, NYAC vs Jacob Varner, NLWC

Three men's and three women's weights are on tap to close out the inaugural Final X series in Bethlehem. Each match up should be competitive and official odds are posted on BetDSI .