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Greatest top wrestlers all-time, not counting leg wrestlers

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I guess I don't understand the criteria.  Isn't the object of top position to turn and ultimately pin your opponent?  Some on this list pinned less people in their career than Ben Askren did his senior year alone.  Logan Stieber qualifies, as does Taylor and Jayson Ness.  But Tony Nelson??  Matt Valenti?  

 

Kyle Dake?  I guess if riding with no attempt to turn is great top wrestling, then he certainly qualifies.

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When I was coaching at OU i was usually in Rod Kilgore's corner at the NCAAs until the finals. His sophomore year when he won his first title he was on deck and warming up. Another wrestler standing near me said all Kilgore has is a single leg, switch, and that dammed ride! I replied that is all he needs. As I posted earlier on another thread he rode Mark Lieberman for over 6 minutes in the finals. He already had a separated shoulder going into the NCAAs, and had surgery scheduled the following monday.

 

Another great rider was Bill Cripps from ASU. Some older guys can attest he was really good. So was Andy Matter from Penn State.

If I remember correctly, Kilgore used that ankle ride, I've always called a sundevil ride, and as the guy stood up he went into a navy ride off of it....he was good with it.  He did have a good single leg too.

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I guess I don't understand the criteria.  Isn't the object of top position to turn and ultimately pin your opponent?  Some on this list pinned less people in their career than Ben Askren did his senior year alone.  Logan Stieber qualifies, as does Taylor and Jayson Ness.  But Tony Nelson??  Matt Valenti?  

 

Kyle Dake?  I guess if riding with no attempt to turn is great top wrestling, then he certainly qualifies.

I was looking for guys that could tilt, turn, pin, like Steiber, Mills, Taylor etc.

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tigerfan9311,

 

The only object is to win the match and inevitably a National Championship.  I, admittedly, added Nelson because I knew his riding annoyed a ton of people.  Still, it was a major reason he won 2(very nearly 3) NCAA Championships.  I would like to know how many matches he secured a riding time point during his last 3 seasons.......

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Some the best I've seen over past couple of decades

 

1.  David Taylor.  He could tilt you, cradle you, crab ride you or whatever needed to be done.  He was like a leech. 

2.  Logan Stieber.  Brutal pressure with the arm bars.  Really dominated over his last two years. 

3.  Ed Ruth.  Cradles anyone?

4.  Ben Askren.  More cradles anyone?  Don't try to scramble

5.  Jesse Jantzen.  Was a master of the crab

6.  AJ Schopp.  Chooses top when given choice.  Monster

7.  Kyle Dake.  More of a rider than a pinner or point scorer, but nobody could get away

8.  Mitch Clark.  Brutal leg rider.  Who would choose bottom. 

9.  Nick Simmons.  East Lansing Strangler

10.  Troy Letters.  Crab master like Jantzen. 

 

Honorable Mention:  Lance Palmer, Troy Nickerson, Jake Herbert, Steve Bosak, Jordan Leen, Dylan Long, James Fleming, Matt Valenti, Mark Perry

 

Will Dake ever finish ahead of Taylor on one of these lists? Imo Dake is easily the very best top guy on that list. Since 2002, I would put Dake and Sanderson at the top of the list. They could ride when it absolutely counted the most: the ncaas. None of those other guys on your list can say the same. 

 

If you were to put Dake and Taylor against the very best competition there was all time, I believe Dake would consistently outperform Taylor in all areas. Dake was simply a better technician than Taylor. I made this point a while ago. Again If you raise the competition to the highest level, Dake would outshine Taylor. Many took issue with that statement, but then the Tsargush result happened.

 

Two time world champion (at the time) Tsargush's matches against Taylor/Dake:

 

Tsargush techfall Taylor 8-0.

 

Dake over Tsargush 10-5 (2 points away from a tech)

 

Many were suprised when this happened, but not I. This is why I believe that nearly any list that puts Taylor over Dake is way off. Dake's level of performance against the very best in the biggest moments must be considered. It can be very difficult being great, many times people undervalue your skill because you were so good. Imo, one of the biggest myths of the past 10 or so years is that Askren was the best scrambler of his generation, or at least in the top tier. I strongly disagree with that, both Dake and Sanderson were levels above Askren in that department. Askren was overly reliant on the scramble since his wrestling from his feet was so poor. He found himself in more scrambles because in many cases that's where he needed to be. Sanderson didn't have to wrestle that way, but when he did, he almost (if not always) won. Same with Dake. 

 

I guess I'm getting off topic now so I'll stop here!!!

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Will Dake ever finish ahead of Taylor on one of these lists? Imo Dake is easily the very best top guy on that list. Since 2002, I would put Dake and Sanderson at the top of the list. They could ride when it absolutely counted the most: the ncaas. None of those other guys on your list can say the same. 

 

If you were to put Dake and Taylor against the very best competition there was all time, I believe Dake would consistently outperform Taylor in all areas. Dake was simply a better technician than Taylor. I made this point a while ago. Again If you raise the competition to the highest level, Dake would outshine Taylor. Many took issue with that statement, but then the Tsargush result happened.

 

Two time world champion (at the time) Tsargush's matches against Taylor/Dake:

 

Tsargush techfall Taylor 8-0.

 

Dake over Tsargush 10-5 (2 points away from a tech)

 

Many were suprised when this happened, but not I. This is why I believe that nearly any list that puts Taylor over Dake is way off. Dake's level of performance against the very best in the biggest moments must be considered. It can be very difficult being great, many times people undervalue your skill because you were so good. Imo, one of the biggest myths of the past 10 or so years is that Askren was the best scrambler of his generation, or at least in the top tier. I strongly disagree with that, both Dake and Sanderson were levels above Askren in that department. Askren was overly reliant on the scramble since his wrestling from his feet was so poor. He found himself in more scrambles because in many cases that's where he needed to be. Sanderson didn't have to wrestle that way, but when he did, he almost (if not always) won. Same with Dake. 

 

I guess I'm getting off topic now so I'll stop here!!!

 

 

Well, you know what they say about opinions

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That and his senior year Dake had the most falls in the NCAA, and rode Taylor to the tune of RT in the Final.

But, since we don't operate in reality let's keep the la la land hypotheticals coming.

 

Unfortunately, many of Taylor's fans use this tactic whenever a Dake/Taylor discussion comes up. I'm not against hypotheticals per se, but when you constantly resort to that line of argumentation, I believe it reveals a weakness in your position. The hypothetical "fantasy world/la la land" argument coupled with the "Taylor beats lesser wrestlers up worse than Dake, therefore he's better" argument is just about all we hear from Taylor fans. 

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Well, you know what they say about opinions

 

What do they say tightwaist? I hope it's not a long the lines of "everyone's opinion is equally valid no matter what the facts say". When it comes to collegiate wrestling greatness, Dake fans have much more to support their position than Taylor fans. I don't see how any honest person who knows wrestling can say that's up for debate.

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not going to argue one side of the fence or the other, but international results and any results can be deceiving. tsargush wasn't wrestling very well when he wrestled taylor or dake.

 

I believe that Tsargush was wrestling about the same level when he wrestled both guys. 

 

 

Are you a Penn State fan sockobuw?

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I picked him all three times. I thought he was the better wrestler. the first match didn't give us much and felt he won the majority of the wrestling action at the scuffle. the thing dake did better than his was manage the match. at this point internationally we don't have a big enough sample size. interested to see how taylor does this weekend. they have had similar results against burroughs domestically. the one disappointing thing in the whole scenario has been inactivity of both guys. I want to see both of them wrestle as much as possible. dake hasn't had control over his situation and I realize I am looking at it selfishly as a fan.

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I picked him all three times. I thought he was the better wrestler. the first match didn't give us much and felt he won the majority of the wrestling action at the scuffle. the thing dake did better than his was manage the match. at this point internationally we don't have a big enough sample size. interested to see how taylor does this weekend. they have had similar results against burroughs domestically. the one disappointing thing in the whole scenario has been inactivity of both guys. I want to see both of them wrestle as much as possible. dake hasn't had control over his situation and I realize I am looking at it selfishly as a fan.

 

To me it was clear as day that Dake was better than Taylor. I don't see how anyone could see it any other way, it was that clear to me. If someone were hesitant to pick Dake because of Taylor's size, I could understand that, but to pick him based off of observed wrestling skill? I just don't see it. You picking Taylor all 3 times is mind boggling to someone like me! 

 

Let me ask you this, do you feel comfortable saying that Dake was a better collegiate wrestler than Taylor now? I know some who still don't want to say that.

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tsargush for one reason or another was at least 5 deep in Russia when he wrestled dake and taylor. he competed at the university games after winning multiple world titles. given, they did send some a-listers because they hosted the games. and yes the results for burroughs have been consistent and similar for those two. dake in my mind beat burroughs the one match at the trials and taylor gave one away to him in vegas.

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LeRoy Smith could sure ride and turn as well. He could get anyone's arm behind their back in an Oklahoma second.

 

 

Randy Lewis turned and stuck defending champ ( and four time finalist) Darryl Burley, after moving up a weight for the All Star meet. He also MAJORED Burley later that year in the finals. Who does that?

Hard to not include him in this list.

 

 

Gene Mills had to be the best, however, back from the late 70s/early 80s era, for someone riding with mostly arms.

 

 

Kyle Dake most recently gets my vote for arm-riders.

 

 

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tsargush for one reason or another was at least 5 deep in Russia when he wrestled dake and taylor. he competed at the university games after winning multiple world titles. given, they did send some a-listers because they hosted the games. and yes the results for burroughs have been consistent and similar for those two. dake in my mind beat burroughs the one match at the trials and taylor gave one away to him in vegas.

 

Okay, but if Tsargush was 5 deep when he wrestled both of them, then the result that Dake/Taylor had against him should be meaningful. And the facts are Taylor lost 0-8 and Dake won 10-5. 

 

It seems like every time a result favors Dake over Taylor, it's explained away by Taylor fans as being less than meaningful.

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that comment was in response to Lord saying they do have results against the guys who have dominated the weight over the last 6-7 years. tsargush wasn't dominating the weight when he wrestled those two.

 

You made your first comment about the Tsargush/Dake/Taylor matches before Lord Nelson posted that comment about Tsargush.

 

Edit:

 

You posted this before Lord Nelson made his comment: "not going to argue one side of the fence or the other, but international results or any results can be decieving. Tsargush wasn't wrestling well when he wrestled Taylor or Dake". 

Edited by oldsuper

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yes the gist is the same, I just elaborated more because tsargush was slumping when he wrestled those two and not dominating the weight class.

 

does anyone think that foster's win over aldotov, who was fresh off a world gold, was an end all measuring stick match?

Edited by sockobuw

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yes the gist is the same, I just elaborated more because tsargush was slumping when he wrestled those two and not dominating the weight class.

 

does anyone think that foster's win over aldotov, who was fresh off a world gold, was and end all measuring stick match?

 

Sockobuw, Tsargush won the tournament where he teched Taylor. He was wrestling well that day, remember he beat Hasanov in the finals. Dake beat Tsargush around this time 10-5. That tells me something. You even admit that Tsargush was wrestling around the same level when he faced them both. 

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