The U.S. world teams get one step closer to completing their rosters this week at the Senior Greco Roman World Trials in Tulsa, OK.
The two-day tournament gets underway Thursday and features plenty of Senior men's competitors who were in action at the U.S. Open in Las Vegas back in April. The Open gave us a sneak peek of what we can expect as these guys battle it out for a chance to get their hands on the wrestler waiting in the finals.
Going off of what we saw in Las Vegas this year—as well as last year and at the U23 tournament—we’ve got a few things that we are looking forward to seeing in Tulsa.
But first, here is who has clinched an automatic berth to the finals by winning the Open in Vegas:
55kg: Max Nowry
60kg: Dalton Roberts
63kg: Ryan Mango
67kg: Ellis Coleman
72kg: RaVaughn Perkins
77kg: Kamal Bey
82kg: Geordan Speiller
87kg: Ben Provisor
97kg: Daniel Miller
130kg: Robby Smith
Miranda vs Roberts
At the U.S. Open, Randon Miranda was down at 55kg and Dalton Roberts was at 60, where he won the title and is sitting in the finals. Then at U23 World Team Trials, they were both at 60 and had a thrilling three-match series that was decided by Miranda’s last-second heroics. It appears that Miranda will be at 60kg again which gives the potential to meet Roberts in the finals again. If they do meet up, expect more of the same fireworks.
Watch the wild finish in match three between Miranda and Roberts:
Coon’s big weekend
By now, we all know that Adam Coon is a bit of a freak. This weekend is a very big one for him. Coon will look to bring reigning world team member Robby Smith’s streak to an end as Smith tries to remain the 130kg representative for Team USA for the sixth time. At the Open it was all Smith, just like it’s always been when the two match up. If that wasn’t enough of a tall task, Coon will then travel to Lehigh to take on returning freestyle world bronze medalist Nick Gwiazdowski at Final X on Saturday. Needless to say, this is a huge weekend for Coon. Will he earn his spot on one world team, two world teams, or no world teams?
Hancock has made big improvements
Prior to the Cadet and U23 World Team Trials, It had been a while since we saw G’Angelo Hancock compete. He was away from competition for a bit and made a big return earlier this month in Akron, Ohio, where he claimed a spot on the U23 Greco world team. In that return, he was flawless. I know that the level of competition at U23s is equal to what he will see this weekend, but his abilities showed up in a big way.
The saga at 77kg
This may be the most intriguing field with the rivalries that have the potential to add another chapter. Returning Junior world champ Kamal Bey is the one waiting to see who makes it the finals against him here. Bey has had some incredible battles with Kendrick Sanders, Mason Manville, and of course Jesse Porter. Sanders and Bey had a thriller at this year’s Bill Farrell in the semifinals that was followed by another epic Bey/Porter battle. Manville is the only one of these three to have a win over Bey in recent history. If Manville makes it through the challenge tournament to meet Bey it will be a rematch of last year’s trials finals, which Manville won in straight matches. Also, don’t forget about Peyton Walsh. He defeated Porter in the semis on criteria at the Open so definitely keep your eye on this bracket.
Watch Bey and Sanders in the Bill Farrell semis:
Dom Bradley Going Greco
Let’s see what he’s got. We’ve seen that he’s pretty tough to move. I guess the only thing to question here is his technique. So, like I said, let’s see what he’s got.
How many points can Rau and Provisor score?
When Josef Rau and Ben Provisor met in Las Vegas, their match ended with 24 total points on the scoreboard. The referee looked like he was dancing with the amount of fours he was throwing up from the action coming from these two bruisers. Should the match happen again, we will get to see it go down at least twice. Now, I know Rau and Provisor got the headline here, but let’s pivot to a serious contender: Pat Martinez. He’s a former world team member that certainly has the skills to come between Rau and Provisor and put that rematch on the back burner.
Watch their wild match from the Open: