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Yianni’s defense - new approach?

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Yianni only faced two opponents at 2021 WTT.  But had 4 matches.  Not sure Pletcher would get to Yianni’s legs anyway.  But McKenna has been able to.  But not much this time around.  Announcers highlighted Yianni’s down blocks and it sure did seem like Yianni was working hard to not let anyone feast on his legs.  
 

Was this really a new thing for him?  Was he really able to change his style regarding defense?  Seems so but not sure if enough data.  If so, he really did elevate his game.  Impressive.

Curious what others think.  Have there been any interviews that talk about it?  (I stink at watching post match interviews)

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3 minutes ago, nom said:

Yianni only faced two opponents at 2021 WTT.  But had 4 matches.  Not sure Pletcher would get to Yianni’s legs anyway.  But McKenna has been able to.  But not much this time around.  Announcers highlighted Yianni’s down blocks and it sure did seem like Yianni was working hard to not let anyone feast on his legs.  
 

Was this really a new thing for him?  Was he really able to change his style regarding defense?  Seems so but not sure if enough data.  If so, he really did elevate his game.  Impressive.

Curious what others think.  Have there been any interviews that talk about it?  (I stink at watching post match interviews)

I don't know what I could call the series that everyone would recognize, askrens calls it the churella series, but its heavily based around finding cradles off opponents shots, anyway he used to be more reliant on that but I think its just too hard to crunch up senior level guys cause of strength and the way they wrestle through positions. So i basically agree, I think he shifted his emphasis to no one touching his legs for reasons similar to how he lowered his emphasis on the top position in folk. 

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3 minutes ago, nom said:

Yianni only faced two opponents at 2021 WTT.  But had 4 matches.  Not sure Pletcher would get to Yianni’s legs anyway.  But McKenna has been able to.  But not much this time around.  Announcers highlighted Yianni’s down blocks and it sure did seem like Yianni was working hard to not let anyone feast on his legs.  
 

Was this really a new thing for him?  Was he really able to change his style regarding defense?  Seems so but not sure if enough data.  If so, he really did elevate his game.  Impressive.

Curious what others think.  Have there been any interviews that talk about it?  (I stink at watching post match interviews)

I called it out on IG a few years ago when he gave up like 12 points at Yasur Dogu against Musakiev(sp). He really needed to tighten up his D if he was going to compete and medal at the world level.  To your point, I’ve never seen/heard him say he was working on it. Needless to say the IG crowd let me have it.  

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Another welcome adjustment is that he's not wrestling like he must win every position. Even when in on a decent shot, if he senses danger, he knows to stalemate it out and get a fresh start. After giving up a bunch of unnecessary points in his first match against McKenna, his approach for the next two matches changed for the better. 

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I think that’s a good analysis. I remember previous interviews where interviewers would say something along the lines of wow that was some incredible defense! And Yianni would reply yeah but I need to not let them in on the legs in the first place. So I do think that was a focus area for him, and he definitely improved there.


If I need to know anything about wrestling or sports, I ask@ShakaAloha because he knows more than me.

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Sammy Sasso is very good at the same defense that Yianni was so prone to for a while there. While he has improved tremendously in his down blocking and head and hands defense that Churella series is still a big time threat to have in his arsenal especially vs foreigners. The US guys like McKenna are well aware of it and have learned to deal with it but I’d bet he gets it for a few scores and maybe a cradle fall at worlds. 

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Yeah the ole Jesse Delgado "who needs leg defense when you can scramble"

Never thought it was a viable freestyle strategy (aside from Chamizo, who doesn't get as wiley)..… but Yainni was close to making it work.
Glad he's apparently attempting to not rely on that. Could be the start of his rise.,...

*Note as some of you have stated, I definitely remember him complaining about everyone getting to his legs ...
#progress.

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10 hours ago, spladle08 said:

Yeah the ole Jesse Delgado "who needs leg defense when you can scramble"

Never thought it was a viable freestyle strategy (aside from Chamizo, who doesn't get as wiley)..… but Yainni was close to making it work.
Glad he's apparently attempting to not rely on that. Could be the start of his rise.,...

*Note as some of you have stated, I definitely remember him complaining about everyone getting to his legs ...
#progress.

SIR this is a freestyle forum. No need to slander the good name of folkstyle national hero Jesse Delgado who had such a dominant arsenal that they had to change the rules a la Kareem Abdul-Jabbar when dunking a basketball was outlawed.

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SIR this is a freestyle forum. No need to slander the good name of folkstyle national hero Jesse Delgado who had such a dominant arsenal that they had to change the rules a la Kareem Abdul-Jabbar when dunking a basketball was outlawed.
Hahahhahaha good post!
I used to look at successful NCAA wrestlers who depend on it and say "They'll never make it",
Dean Heil being the most recent, but with those new rules it seems to be deterring it.

Yainni wasn't as "I must expose my back to survive"
But he definitely doesn't (didn't) mind, giving up his legs in folkstyle.

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He's been saying for a couple years that he wants to fix his baseline D. I think it's gotten progressively better. He just has to make sure he gives himself enough opportunities to score on offense since he's limiting defensive scoring opportunities. 

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47 minutes ago, uncle bernard said:

He's been saying for a couple years that he wants to fix his baseline D. I think it's gotten progressively better. He just has to make sure he gives himself enough opportunities to score on offense since he's limiting defensive scoring opportunities. 

He doesn't seem to suffering for opportunities, his set-ups have become the outstanding part of his wrestling, still a little hairy when he gets to the leg, except his low lift finish which he seems to have mastered.

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1 minute ago, hammerlockthree said:

He doesn't seem to suffering for opportunities, his set-ups have become the outstanding part of his wrestling, still a little hairy when he gets to the leg, except his low lift finish which he seems to have mastered.

I think they were always good, but sometimes he just didn't pull the trigger enough. He's one of those guys who when you see him hit something you wonder how he could ever lose and yet he does all the time. He's also still super young. 

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1 hour ago, uncle bernard said:

He's been saying for a couple years that he wants to fix his baseline D. I think it's gotten progressively better. He just has to make sure he gives himself enough opportunities to score on offense since he's limiting defensive scoring opportunities. 

Looking forward to seeing how YD's new approach works at Worlds.  Agree with everyone here that his adjustments have been for the better.

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39 minutes ago, uncle bernard said:

I think they were always good, but sometimes he just didn't pull the trigger enough. He's one of those guys who when you see him hit something you wonder how he could ever lose and yet he does all the time. He's also still super young. 

When I think of him not pulling the trigger, I think of the JO match, and I'm not saying your wrong, but I think he assumed his superior handfighting combined with JO's ridiculous habit of living on the edge would be enough for him to control the match and cruise to victory. A tempting delusion. 

Anyway I think he usually shoots enough, and when he hits guys like Otoguru or Musakaev his is actually probably gonna have to be a little more selective...maybe not in Musakaev's case sense he'll just get tired and give up...

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Great points by all of you.  Great thread so far.

Yeah , I think now with the D, it is a great improvement for Yianni, good to see his progress and improvement.  And like they say , styles make matches.  Something else added to his toolbox.  Should he need the gumby flexibility, it is there, should he need the leg D, it is there.  I think he will adapt it accordingly to whomever he is wrestling.

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