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irani

Best wrestlers who did not win an olympic gold medal

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Who are the top wrestlers who never won an olympic gold medal?

Here is my list for Iran

  1. Reza Yazdani - Heavy favorite to win the 2012 olympic gold before his horrific injury
  2. Ebrahim Javadi - World champion in 69, 70, 71 and 73, only won bronze in 1972
  3. Mansour Mehdizadeh - world champion in 61, 62 and 65 failed to medal in the 60, 64 and 68 olympics.  In the 64 olympics, he defeated the eventual gold and silver medalist, tied with the bronze medalist, and took 4th!

Who is on your list?

 

Edited by irani

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1 hour ago, irani said:

Who are the top wrestlers who never won an olympic gold medal?

Here is my list for Iran

  1. Reza Yazdani - Heavy favorite to win the 2012 olympic gold before his horrific injury
  2. Ebrahim Javadi - World champion in 69, 70, 71 and 73, only won bronze in 1972
  3. Mansour Mehdizadeh - world champion in 61, 62 and 65 failed to medal in the 60, 64 and 68 olympics.  In the 64 olympics, he defeated the eventual gold and silver medalist, tied with the bronze medalist, and took 4th!

Who is on your list?

 

Javadi actually beat the Olympic Champion that year but lost to another guy, they were tied on points but Javadi won the bronze because of his body weight !

I would add Alireza Heidari to the list, he was probably in his best shape back in 2000 but couldn't find a way into Kurtanidze's defense (lost 1-0) after losing couple more times to this guy (both in Worlds finals 2002 and 2003) he finally found the magic formula to beat him in 2004 Athens but then he got surprised by that Uzbek guy in the semifinal and of course the officiating was controversial too, Heidari versus a young Gatsalov in final could be interesting.

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This is an impressive list we have come up with, it includes multiple world champions and some UWW Hall of Famers.

I have a question, and I do not need any disrespect, I am simply trying to learn the history.

Two of the guys listed, Kolat and McIlravy, have an amazing wrestling career,  but did not win any world championships.  Do they belong to this list as much as the others on the list?  is there something more to the story?

As an example Gene Mills  won the Tiblisi tournament in 1980 he one of the toughest places on earth to win for a non USSR .  So, even though he was not a multiple world champion,  we could argue he would have won the gold in Moscow Olympics.

Edited by irani

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1 hour ago, irani said:

Hands down favorite to win the 1980 gold

I am not sure that is true.  Anatoly Belaglasov was at his weight (52kg).  AB was a world Gold Medalist in 1977 (@48kg), 78 (@52kg), and in 1982 (@57kg).  He also won the Olympic Gold in the boycotted 1980 games in Moscow.     I do agree that Gene Mills was great and would have been in the hunt for the Gold in Moscow but if there was a favorite it would be A Belaglasov.  

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1 minute ago, lu1979 said:

I am not sure that is true.  Anatoly Belaglasov was at his weight (52kg).  AB was a world Gold Medalist in 1977 (@48kg), 78 (@52kg), and in 1982 (@57kg).  He also won the Olympic Gold in the boycotted 1980 games in Moscow.     I do agree that Gene Mills was great and would have been in the hunt for the Gold in Moscow but if there was a favorite it would be A Belaglasov.  

Perhaps not the hands down favorite, but certainly a favorite.  The world cup the following year confirms my assertion 

 

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46 minutes ago, irani said:

Perhaps not the hands down favorite, but certainly a favorite.  The world cup the following year confirms my assertion 

 

What I meant was that Gene would not have been favored going into the 1980 Olympics - I certainly think he was would have been in contention for the Gold and I expect that without a boycott  it would have Gene, Belaglozov or the Japanese guy (who also had great lightweigts at that time) who ended up with the Gold.  Winning Tiblisi was very impressive and probably tougher than a World Championship tournament.  He also won the World Cup 3Xs.   However Gene never won a World medal.  He did win a tournament in 1980 in Japan that was billed as the Super World Tournament, but he never medaled (I don't think he ever competed in) a FILA World tournament. 

By the way thank you for posting that match - it was a great match and I had never had the pleasure of seeing it before.  Do you know if these two great wrestlers ever meet again?  Did Gene ever get a chance to compete against Sergei when after he moved up to 57kg?  Thanks again.

Edited by lu1979

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12 minutes ago, lu1979 said:

What I meant was that Gene would not have been favored going into the 1980 Olympics - I certainly think he was would have been in contention for the Gold and I expect that without a boycott  it would have Gene, Belaglozov or the Japanese guy (who also had great lightweigts at that time) who ended up with the Gold.  Winning Tiblisi was very impressive and probably tougher than a World Championship tournament.  He also won the World Cup 3Xs.   However Gene never won a World medal.  He did win a tournament in 1980 in Japan that was billed as the Super World Tournament, but he never medaled (I don't think he ever competed in) a FILA World tournament. 

By the way thank you for posting that match - it was a great match and I had never had the pleasure of seeing it before.  Do you know if these two great wrestlers ever meet again?  Did Gene ever get a chance to compete against Sergei when after he moved up to 57kg?  Thanks again.

 

12 minutes ago, lu1979 said:

What I meant was that Gene would not have been favored going into the 1980 Olympics - I certainly think he was would have been in contention for the Gold and I expect that without a boycott  it would have Gene, Belaglozov or the Japanese guy (who also had great lightweigts at that time) who ended up with the Gold.  Winning Tiblisi was very impressive and probably tougher than a World Championship tournament.  He also won the World Cup 3Xs.   However Gene never won a World medal.  He did win a tournament in 1980 in Japan that was billed as the Super World Tournament, but he never medaled (I don't think he ever competed in) a FILA World tournament. 

By the way thank you for posting that match - it was a great match and I had never had the pleasure of seeing it before.  Do you know if these two great wrestlers ever meet again?  Did Gene ever get a chance to compete against Sergei when after he moved up to 57kg?  Thanks again.

Actually after looking at the history a little more the favorite going into the 1980 Olympics probably would have been the great Japanese lightweight Yuji Takada who won the Olympics in 1976 and World Golds in 1974, 75, 77 and 79 all at 52 kg.  I believe the Japanese also boycotted Moscow.  Takada made a comeback in 1984 and won a bronze in LA. 

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Hard to tell in the video and Gene would kill me if he knew I said this, but I have some questions about the first two tilts. The last one was clear cut but I didn't think AB was past 90 on the first two- the second in particular which was the same one AB complained about.

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Few wrestlers come to my mind are -

1. Abdusalam Gadisov (RUS) 97kg  - multiple world champion and but never won Olympic Gold. He lost to Reza Yazdani in 2012 and 2016 I think RUS sent Anzor Boltukaev as thier rep for 97kg.

2. Murad Gaidarov (orignally RUS represented BLR) 74/76kg - multiple european champions and  1 or 2 time world champ, but always (often controversial) left behind by his nemesis great Buvaisar Saitiev. He did win Sliver (originally bronze, later upgraded to Silver) in  2008 Olympics but never a gold.

3. On women's side - many were denied Olympic Gold by Japan, few i could think who missed Gold are Maria Stadnik (AZE) , Sofia Mattson (SWE)

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2 hours ago, lu1979 said:

 

Actually after looking at the history a little more the favorite going into the 1980 Olympics probably would have been the great Japanese lightweight Yuji Takada who won the Olympics in 1976 and World Golds in 1974, 75, 77 and 79 all at 52 kg.  I believe the Japanese also boycotted Moscow.  Takada made a comeback in 1984 and won a bronze in LA. 

You are correct that Japan definitely boycotted the 1980 Olympics.  I would LOVE to find out if Takada and Belaglozov participated in the Tiblisi 1980 tournament.  If they did, that would be the closest we'll ever come to knowing who was really the best in 1980

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15 minutes ago, freestyle_fan said:

3. On women's side - many were denied Olympic Gold by Japan, few i could think who missed Gold are Maria Stadnik (AZE) , Sofia Mattson (SWE)

 

Yes

I would add to Valeria Khoblova (Zholobova) to that list. Super tough wrestler, showed incredible improvement year after year. She just unfortunately competed in the era of Icho, Yoshida and Maroulis (and Amri, Mattson, Ratkevich, etc.). She was like 4 seconds from beating Icho for gold in Rio.

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I think overall Kudakhov is my choice.

For Canada we have

Gia Sissouri 1x gold 1x silver 2x bronze at worlds and silver in 96.

Tonya Verbeek probabaly the best woman to never win gold. Three time Olympic medalest with her only loses coming to Yoshida. Also should have beat Yoshida in 2011.

Christine Nordhagen won 6 world titles including 1996 and 2000 before women were in the Olympics.

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6 hours ago, irani said:

Murtazaliev won gold, right?

Bronze in 2004 at 66, Gold in 2005 at 66, Gold in 2007 at 74, but didn't make it in 2008 when Buvaisar Saitiev won his third Olympics. By then, Makhach was no longer Russian's man at 74. He won gold at Yarygin in 2009 and Aliev in 2011, but that's it. It's insane to think about how deep that weight class has been for Russia since... ever. 

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2 minutes ago, Tofurky said:

Bronze in 2004 at 66, Gold in 2005 at 66, Gold in 2007 at 74, but didn't make it in 2008 when Buvaisar Saitiev won his third Olympics. By then, Makhach was no longer Russian's man at 74. He won gold at Yarygin in 2009 and Aliev in 2011, but that's it. It's insane to think about how deep that weight class has been for Russia since... ever. 

Ah Makhach not Sagid.  Good choice!

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14 minutes ago, Katie said:

Ali Aliev perhaps 

Wow good choice!  I actually remember him.  When I was kid, one of the first wrestling matches I ever watched on TV,  was Aliev vs Aboutaleb Talebi from Iran.  I am shocked he does not have a gold medal.  I wonder what happened to him in the 64 olympics

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