2022 US World Team Trials Champion Seth Gross (Photo/Sam Janicki; SJanickiPhoto.com)
#6 Azamat Tuskaev (RUS) moved up two spots in the rankings to #4 after winning the Poddubny tournament over Nachyn Mongush (RUS) and #17 Abubakar Mutaliev. Tuskaev's move up the rankings coincides with Mongush's return to the rankings as Mongush upset Yarygin champion #4 Ramiz Gamzatov (RUS) in the semis to return to the rankings at #5. Bronze medalists at the Poddubny tournament were #6 Ramiz Gamzatov (RUS) and #18 Abubakar Mutaliev (RUS). While the story of the Poddubny was Tuskaev and Mongush, Gamzatov was able to avenge two past losses to 2021 world bronze medalist #13 Aryan Tyutrin (BLR) in the quarterfinals of the Poddubny and came back to win bronze over the 2021 Yarygin runner-up Musa Mekhtikhanov (RUS).
2021 Olympic Trials runner-up Vito Arujau (USA) was dominant in his finals match at the U.S. World Team Trials, beating Jakob Camacho by a 23-0 point difference across two matches. Arujau will face off against 2021 world champion #2 Thomas Gilman (USA) at Final X. Zane Richards took bronze at World Team Trials while U.S. Open champ Matthew Ramos took fourth.
#2 Thomas Gilman (USA) won the Pan-Am championships over Darian Cruz (PUR) to avenge a loss from the 2017 125 LB NCAA semifinals. Bronze medalists at the Pan-Am championships were Alexei Blanco (CUB) and Oscar Tigregros Urbano (COL). Gamal Mohamed (EGY) won the African championships over Ebikewenimo Wilson (NGR) with Omar Faye (SEN) and Diamentino Iuna Fafe (GBS) taking bronze.
Khalid Magomedov won the Dagestan U23 Championships over Gadzhimagomed Akhmedov with Yunus Yavbatyrov and Khabib Mekhtikhanov taking bronze. Ananda Dashiev won the Russian University Nationals over Kharyskhal Grigoriev with Amir Chamzyn and Dmitry Ilarionov taking bronze.
Seth Gross (USA) came out on top of an electric 61 KG bracket at the U.S. World Team Trials to secure his chance to wrestle at Final X against 2021 world silver medalist #2 Daton Fix (USA). To make the finals, Gross won a 13-12 shoot-out against 2021 Junior world rep Jesse Mendez (USA), a pin against U.S. Open champion #8 Nico Megaludis (USA), and a two-match series against breakout star Daniel DeShazer (USA). For his efforts, Gross debuts in the rankings at #13 while DeShazer impresses in his debut at #15 after finishing runner-up to Gross and tech falling #9 Josh Rodriguez (USA) in the semifinals. In the bronze medal match, #8 Nico Megaludis (USA) won a tight 3-2 match against #9 Josh Rodriguez (USA), which was a rematch of their U.S. Open finals match. Megaludis and Rodriguez take a significant bump in the rankings due to their losses in the semifinals plus the impressive performances of unranked Magomed Baitukaev (RUS) and 16th ranked Bashir Magomedov (RUS) at the Poddubny tournament that catapulted them into the top 10.
The Poddubny tournament saw top-ranked Abasgadzhi Magomedov (RUS) overcome a game #16 Bashir Magomedov (RUS) for gold. Bronze medalists at the Poddubny were the 2021 Cadet world champion Magomed Baitukaev (RUS) and Zhargal Damdinov (RUS). Even with finishing as a bronze medalist, Baitukaev was one of the major breakthroughs at the Poddubny, upsetting 2021 Russian nationals runner-up #5 Muslim Mekhtikhanov (RUS) in the quarterfinals. Baitukaev debuts in the rankings at #6 for his win over Mekhtikhanov while #16 Bashir Magomedov climbs up eleven spots to #5 based on his win over Baitukaev in the Russian Junior Nationals finals in March plus his bronze medal finish in December at the Umakhanov.
Abdelhak Kherbache (ALG) took gold at the African championships over Shehabeldin Mohamed (EGY) with Sofiane El Khamer (MAR) and Didier Diatta (SEN) taking bronze. #2 Daton Fix (USA) won the Pan-Am championships over Joseph Andres Silva (PUR) with Pedro Flores Salazar (MEX) taking bronze.
Kezhik Seden won the Russian University Nationals over Alexander Avelov with Bilal Kazimagomedov and Gadzhimurad Gadzhiev taking bronze. Magomedrasul Dagirov won the U23 Dagestan Championships over Akhmed Abdulaev with Magomed Darzhania and Ramazan Shamilov taking bronze.
By winning their semifinal matches against Nick Lee (USA) and Ian Parker (USA), Evan Henderson (USA) and Yianni Diakomihalis (USA) booked their spot for Final X where they will wrestle against each other for the world team spot. After a shocking quarterfinal upset loss to Ian Parker (USA), #12 Joey McKenna (USA) was able to finish his world team trials tournament in bronze with a win against Parker in the bronze medal match. With Yianni back on top and McKenna's loss, the United States will have Yianni at #12 in the rankings while McKenna drops three spots to #15 for his loss to Ian Parker (USA).
2021 Yarygin champion Alik Khadartsev (RUS) made his return to the rankings in a big way, winning the Poddubny over 2021 world bronze medalist Tulga Tumur Ochir (MGL) in the finals. Khadartsev notched impressive wins as well over 2020 61 KG Russian nationals bronze medalist Ibragim Abdurakhmanov (RUS) and Yarygin bronze medalist #11 Ibragim Ibragimov (RUS) on his way to the finals. Taking bronze at the Poddubny was #10 (70) Ibragim Abdurakhmanov and Arip Abdullaev. Khadartsev is back in the rankings at #10 for his wins over #10 Ramazan Ferzaliev (RUS) from the 2021 Yarygin, #11 Ibragim Ibragimov (RUS) and Ibragim Abdurakhmanov (RUS). Abdurakhmanov is back in the 65 KG rankings at #13 for beating Ibragimov for bronze at the Poddubny. Yarygin bronze medalist Ibragimov drops three spots in the rankings to #14 for his losses to #10 Alik Khadartsev (RUS) and Abdurakhmanov. Artur Badtiev beat the 2021 Yarygin bronze medalist Chayan Mongush to win the Russian University Nationals with Abdurakhman Dalgatov and Kilyab Khanipaev taking bronze. Dalgat Abdulkadyrov won the Dagestan U23 Championships over Akhmed Zubairov by forfeit, with Ramazan Chankaev and Abdurakhman Dalgatov taking bronze.
McKenna won the Pan-Am championships over Sebastian Rivera (PUR) with Augustin Destribats (ARG) and Albaro Camacho (DOM) taking bronze. Mbunde Mbali (GBS) won the African championships over Chouaib Sahraoui (ALG) with Yehia Hafez (EGY) and Otmane El Bahja (MAR) taking bronze.
#14 Zain Retherford (USA) and #15 Jordan Oliver (USA) will meet at Final X to decide who will be the U.S. world rep at 70 KG. Retherford secured his second Final X bid by beating #13 Alec Pantaleo (USA) in the semifinals while Oliver made the Final X by beating NCAA champ Ryan Deakin (USA) in the semis. Finishing with bronze at the world team trials was Tyler Berger (USA) over Sammy Sasso (USA). A pair of notable upsets in the consolation bracket were Sasso over Pantaleo and Berger over Deakin. So here are the results before I get into the rankings on the bottom half of 70 KG: Berger>Deakin>Sasso>Pantaleo. So following that logic Tyler Berger slots in at #16, Ryan Deakin at #17, Sammy Sasso at #18 and Alec Pantaleo all the way down to #19.
2020 Russian Nationals #12 Ruslan Zhendaev was the big difference maker this month as he upset #4 Israil Kasumov (RUS) and #6 Kurban Shiraev (RUS) to make the finals of the Poddubny tournament where he injury defaulted out to #5 Viktor Rassadin. Bronze medalists at the Poddubny were Ruslan Bogatyrev (RUS) and Shiraev. From the aftermath of the Poddubny, Zhendaev skyrockets up the rankings to #5, Rassadin moves up one spot to #4, Kasumov falls to #7 and Ruslan Bogatyrev (RUS) is in #12 for beating Yarygin runner-up #11 Anzor Zakuev (RUS) for bronze.
Mukhamed Dadaev won the Dagestan U23 National over Magomed Zharulaev with Ali Makhachev and Naib Gaziev taking bronze. Sayin Kazyryk won Russian University Nationals over Konstantin Kaprynov with Mukhammed Beshtoev and Magomed Magomedov taking bronze.
Emmanuel Olapade (CAN) won the Pan-Am championships over Vinicius Da Silva Joaquim (BRA) with Alexis Olivera Magallandes (MEX) taking bronze. Bacar Ndum (GBS) won the African championships over Rami Brinis (ALG) with Mohamed Zorgui (TUN) and Said Elghahsh (EGY) taking bronze.
#8 Jason Nolf (USA) pinned 2019 Junior world champion David Carr (USA) and then scored two tech fall wins over Joey Lavallee (USA) in the finals of the world team trials to secure his spot in Final X opposite 2021 world champion #2 Kyle Dake (USA). Carr took bronze at the world team trials after tech falling Tommy Gantt (USA).
In a battle of North Ossetian senior world champs, top-ranked Zaurbek Sidakov (RUS) would edge #10 David Baev (RUS) 3-1 for gold at the Poddubny. Taking bronze at the Poddubny was #5 Razambek Zhamalov (RUS) and #6 Cherman Valiev (RUS). Baev moves up five spots to #5 for his semifinal win over Zhamalov while Sidakov keeps the top spot locked down for his wins over Baev and Valiev. Zhamalov and Valiev both drop one spot each to #6 and #7 respectively.
#2 Kyle Dake (USA) won the Pan-Am championships over Franklin Gomez Matos (PUR) with Franklin Maren Castillo (CUB) and Cesar Bordeaux Rego Alvan (BRA) taking bronze. Amir Reda Ramadan Hussein (EGY) won the African championships over Abdelkader Ikkal (ALG) with Arno Van Zul (RSA) and Ogbonna Emmanuel John (NGR) taking bronze.
Anton Suchkov (RUS) won the Russian University Nationals over Asludin Bagamaev (RUS) with Aslan Gagaev (RUS) and Aisen Potapov (RUS) taking bronze. Imam Ganishov (RUS) won the Dagestan U23 Championships over Biysoltan Arslanov (RUS) with Abdulkadyr Abdulkadyrov (RUS) and Gadzhimurad Hasanov (RUS) taking bronze.
#19 Chance Marsteller (USA) came out on top of an absolute shark tank of a bracket at World Team Trials to claim his spot at Final X opposite reigning world champion #1 Jordan Burroughs (USA). To make the finals, Marsteller got a nail-biting 5-4 win over NCAA champion Carter Starocci (USA) in the quarterfinals and in the semifinals beat U.S. Open champion #5 David McFadden (USA) to book his spot in the finals opposite #6 Vincenzo Joseph (USA). In three of the best matches of the entire tournament, Marsteller was able to come out on top two-matches-to-one against Joseph to claim gold. Other important matches results were #6 Vincenzo Joseph (USA) over #7 Alex Dieringer (USA) in the semis and Carter Starocci (USA) coming back to take third with wins over Dieringer and McFadden. From the aftermath of the U.S. Open, Marsteller skyrockets fourteen spots up the rankings to #5, while world team trials bronze medalist Carter Starocci (USA) makes his debut at #7 for beating McFadden and Dieringer. McFadden drops three spots to #8 and Dieringer drops two spots to #9.
#2 Magomedkhabib Kadimagomedov (BLR) won the Poddubny in impressive fashion, using a second-period comeback to take the gold over #3 Radik Valiev (RUS) in the finals. Finishing with bronze at the Poddubny was #4 Malik Shavaev (RUS) and #16 Amanulla Gadzhimagomedov. Valiev returns at #3 after having a foray up to 86KG, where he won the North Ossetia wrestling championships. #11 Atsamaz Sanakoev got moved above #4 Akhmed Usmanov (RUS) at #12 because his resume from winning the Umakhanov over #4 Malik Shavaev (RUS) and Usmanov gives him better footing to take the loss he had to #19 Dmitri Kuprin (RUS) at the Yarygin and keep his spot then Usmanov did for losing to Shavaev and Gadzhimurad Alikhmaev (RUS), plus his loss in December to Sanakoev at the Umakhanov. #16 Dmitri Kuprin falls three spots to #19 for his loss to Gadzhimagomedov for bronze at the Poddubny.
Rasul Asluev (RUS) won the Dagestan U23 Championships over Ali Nurov (RUS) with Nabi Aputaev (RUS) and Akhmed Manilov taking bronze. #13 Magomed Magomaev (RUS) won the Russian University Nationals over Ali Tsokaev (RUS) with Roman Petrenko (RUS) and Alik Badtiev (RUS) taking bronze.
Chems Fetairia (ALG) won the African championship over Youssef Boulahari (MAR) with Jean Marie (MRI) and Andy Mukendi (COD) taking bronze. #1 Jordan Burroughs (USA) won the Pan-Am championships with Samuel Barrish (CAN) finishing runner-up and Victor Santos Acosta (PUR) with bronze in the round-robin format.
#8 Zahid Valencia (USA) won the U.S. World Team Trials in two matches over two-time Junior world champion Mark Hall (USA) to make his second Final X appearance. Valencia will take on 2021 world silver medalist #2 David Taylor (USA) in June. Finishing with bronze at the world team trials was Trent Hidlay (USA) over Drew Foster (USA). Valencia doubled up in May with a title at the Pan-Am championships over Lazaro Hernandez (CUB). Bronze medalists at the Pan-Am championships were Carlos Izquierdo Mendez (COL) and Ethan Ramos (PUR).
Fateh Benferdjallah (ALG) won the African championships over Mahmoud Badawi (EGY) with Ekerekeme Agiomor (NGR) and Edward Lessing (RSA) taking bronze.
#3 Artur Naifonov (RUS) beat #4 Dauren Kurugliev (RUS) in the finals of the Poddubny tournament. Bronze medalists were #6 Ada Bagomedov (RUS) and #7 Amanulla Rasulov (RUS). Important head-to-head results were Naifonov over #6 Ada Bagomedov (RUS), Kurugliev over Rasulov, Kurugliev over #13 Arsenali Musalaliev (RUS), Rasulov over Musalaliev for bronze, and Bagomedov over 2019 79 KG world bronze medalist Gadzhi Nabiev (RUS) in the qualification round.
Aslan Bagaev (RUS) won the Russian University Nationals over Shamil Magomedov with Alexander Kondratov (RUS) and Akhmed Bagavudinov (RUS) taking bronze. Magomednabi Magomedov (RUS) won the U23 Dagestan Championships over Ramazan Abuzagidov (RUS) by forfeit, while Akhmed Bagavudinov and Rashid Satykhadzhiev (RUS) took bronze.
Two-time 92 KG world champion #10 (97) J'den Cox (USA) is back at 92 KG, where he won the Pan-Am championships with Jeremy Poirier (CAN) and Cristian Sanchez Hernandez (MEX) took bronze. Cox slides back into the rankings at #3. Nathan Jackson (USA) won the world team trials tournament over Isaac Trumble (USA) to book his spot in Final X opposite #3 J'den Cox (USA). Mohammed Fardj (ALG) won the African championships over Imed Kaddidi (TUN) with Machiel Grobler (RSA) and Noureldin Hassan (EGY) taking bronze.
2021 world runner-up #2 Magomed Kurbanov (RUS) won the Poddubny tournament over Junior Russian Nationals champion Magomed Sharipov (RUS). Bronze medalists at the Poddubny were #13 Guram Chertkoev (RUS) and #16 Azamat Zakuev. Sharipov debuts in the rankings at #14 for upsetting #13 Chertkoev and Tazhudin Mukhtarov (RUS). Kurbanov keeps his top spot with wins over Sharipov, #14 Tamerlan Tapsiev (RUS), and #16 Azamat Zakuev (RUS). Zakuev moves up three spots to #13 for avenging his loss from the Yarygin to Tapsiev in the bronze medal match. Chertkoev and Tapsiev both drop two spots to #15 and #16 respectively after their losses.
Gadzhimurad Kadilov (RUS) won the Dagestan U23 Championships over Sagrab Isaev (RUS) with Kamil Abdulkadyrov (RUS) and Shakhban Surkhaev (RUS) taking bronze. Nikita Safronov (RUS) won the Russian University Nationals over Berd Kusov (RUS) with Farid Kazimov (RUS) and Salikhan Imeev (RUS) taking bronze. Three-time World/Olympic medalist #9 Selim Yasar (TUR) has been removed from the rankings due to inactivity.
Kollin Moore (USA) won the U.S. World Team Trials against Michael Macchiavello (USA) to book his spot for Final X against 2021 World and Olympic runner-up #2 Kyle Snyder (USA). #2 Kyle Snyder (USA) won the Pan-Am championships over Artur Silot Torres (CUB) while Maxwell Lacey Garita (CRC) and Luis Perez Sosa (DOM) took bronze. Mostafa Elders (EGY) took gold at the African championships over Nicolaas De Lange (RSA) while Ulrich Manouan (CIV) and Mohamed Saadaoui (TUN) took bronze.
Junior Russian Nationals runner-up Akhmed Tazhudinov (RUS) came out of absolutely nowhere to wrestle a career-best tournament and win gold at the Poddubny. Tazhudinov's tournament started off with a quarterfinal upset of 125 KG Tokyo Olympian #15 Sergey Kozyrev (RUS), avenged his Junior Nationals finals loss to #19 Abulla Kurbanov (RUS) in the semifinals and capped it off with an impressive victory over 2021 Russian Nationals champion #5 Alikhan Zhabrailov (RUS). With the results of his incredibly impressive run, Akhmed Tazhudinov (RUS) is able to make his debut in the rankings at #7. Finishing with bronze at the Poddubny was Kurbanov and #20 Aleksandr Hushtyn (BLR).
Tamil Dzhikaev (RUS) beat Maxim Tolmachev (RUS) to win the Dagestan U23 Championships with Dagir Iskakov and Gadzhimagomed Tazhudinov (RUS) taking bronze. Shamil Umarov (RUS) won the Russian University Nationals over Magomedarip Abdulkhalikov (RUS) with Akhmed Mutalimov (RUS) taking bronze.
Hayden Zillmer (USA) and #16 Nick Gwiazdowski (USA) both won their semifinal matches against Dom Bradley (USA) and Tony Cassioppi (USA) to book their spots into Final X against each other. Bradley finished bronze at the world team trials over Ty Walz (USA). Amarveer Dhesi (CAN) is back in the rankings at #15 for beating Gwiazdowski in the finals of the Pan-Am championships. Bronze medalists at the Pan-Am championships were Catriel Muriel (ARG) and Jose Daniel Diaz Robertti (VEN). Youssif Hemida (EGY) won the African championships with Anas Lamkabber (MOR) and Hamza Rahmani (TUN) taking bronze.
#4 Zelimkhan Khizriev (RUS) won the Poddubny over 2021 world bronze medalist #9 Lkhagvagerel Munkhtur (MGL). Bronze medalists at the Poddubny were Erik Dzhioev (RUS) and #7 Anzor Khizriev. Dzhioev returns to the heavyweight rankings at #11 for beating #12 Atsamaz Tebloev (RUS), #13 Vitali Goloev (RUS), and #16 Alen Khubulov (RUS). Ostap Pasenok (RUS) returns to the rankings at #7 for upsetting #5 Baldan Tszyhipov (RUS). Tsyzhipov is now ranked at #8.
Magomed Alichuev (RUS) won the Dagestan U23 Championships over Gamzat Alizhudinov (RUS) with Mansur Ilyasov (RUS) taking bronze. Gamzat Alizhudinov won the Russian University Nationals over Andrey Aronov (RUS) with Nikita Khabarov (RUS) and Abdulkhalil Dzhavatkhanov (RUS) taking bronze.
Pound for Pound
The biggest mover for this month in the pound for pound rankings is 2021 61 KG world champion Abasgadzhi Magomedov (RUS). Magomedov was originally ranked #22 pound-for-pound based on their not being a huge amount of head-to-head pound-for-pound guys for him to go against, plus not having as much world hardware as other members of the top ten, but then when I looked at his resume of wins over world medalists the likes of Daton Fix (USA), Thomas Gilman (USA), Akhmednabi Gvarzatilov (AZE), Yowlys Bonne Rodriguez (CUB), Yuki Takahashi (JPN), Toshihiro Hasegawa (JPN), Tuvshintulga Tumenbileg (MGL) and Bekhbayar Erdenebat (MGL), plus being undefeated for the past two years, it's really hard to deny Abasgadzhi Magomedov as a top ten level talent pound-for-pound. Magomedov's debut in the top ten sees him land at the #9.
74 KG Poddubny tournament runner-up David Baev (RUS) is back in the rankings at #15 for beating #13 Razambek Zhamalov (RUS) in the semifinals of the Poddubny tournament along with his wins over #17 Cherman Valiev (RUS) and #21 Magomedmurad Gadzhiev (POL). On the bottom half of the rankings, I dropped three-time 125 KG World/Olympic champ #21 Taha Akgul (TUR) to #25 and 2021 World and Olympic runner-up #20 Geno Petriashvili (GEO) from the rankings. The reasoning here is that these guys were the old generation of heavyweight and while they had some great battles from the 2016-2020 quad, they were very quickly replaced by Gable Steveson (USA) and Amir Zare (IRI) and when you look at Akgul he hasn't touched world gold going on 5 years and Petriashvili is coming off back-to-back Olympic and World finals losses to Gable Steveson (USA) and Amir Zare (IRI) so it doesn't make sense to justify either of them over world champs or higher-performing guys with better recent resumes.