Natsu 2021 Midway

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***Spoilers through day 8***

Today we discuss the first week of the May tournament and also send out some special words to our listeners who’ve been kind enough to donate to our new Patreon. Find us on if you’d like to contribute, every patron gets a shout out every basho and every dollar is reinvested in improving our show.

Theme music by David Hall via SoundCloud

Not-So Basho Preview

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Welcome to the twilight zone! This is our preview episode for the cancelled basho that we will be simulating. Listen back to our Natsu 2020 Cancellation episode for more details and send us your thoughts on what you hope to “see” this tournament. *Explicit language in post-credits bit*

The new and kick-ass Not-So theme is by @MrJWags and our regular theme music is by David Hall via SoundCloud

Natsu 2019 Fantasy Sumo and Power Rankings

Something we (Jake) have been promising for a while is an overview of our statistics after each basho. We put a bit of effort into running fantasy sumo contests and our Elo-style power rankings, so we wanted to make sure the final results were available more than just on our regular episodes. Check out our results below and let us know what you think. We’re always looking for more ways to over-analyze and quantify this beautiful sport of ours.

Fantasy Sumo

Every basho we run a fantasy sumo contest for bragging rights. Check out our Twitter feed for the contest to join us next basho. Here are the rules we use for scoring:


Our fantasy guest this basho was @ourmaninjapan, who won his place by coming up with some great sumo/music puns in our Twitter contest. In a move rivaling the nerdiness of GSB ourselves, he used an algorithm and a spreadsheet to determine how many wins he expected from each wrestler. Here is his team, anchored by the only active yokozuna, Kakuryu:


Next up we have Flyric who has been on a cold streak, losing 2 of the last three basho. Did he turn it around this time?Flyric

He did not. Rough call on that Takakeisho pick. Next up was Mak coming in with a strong looking team on paper:Mak

A few guys out of their depth kept Mak from pulling ahead. Jake picked with his heart instead of his head but managed to do OK


But far and away our winner was Ryan. His picks did well so consistently he would have almost won even without the yusho winner.


Here’s a final look at scores, with Ryan crushing us something fierce and our guest holding his own. Well done and good game, @ourmaninjapan.


GSB Sumo Power Rankings – Link to Spreadsheet

Another of our side projects is our GSB Power Rankings. Borrowing from professional chess’s Elo rankings, we assign each wrestler in the top division a rating, defining 1000 as the (unitless) average. By comparing the rating of each wrestler, we can estimate the probability of victory for each match and reassign points according to the result. If the result was expected, such as Hakuho defeating Tochiozan, then only a few points will be taken from the loser’s rating and given to the winner’s. In contrast, a big upset will cause a bigger point-swing. By following this process over all 15 days of the basho, we can visualize how the wrestlers compare to each other in regards to their current momentum. Here’s a graph of some of the top guys in Natsu:


Check out Asanoyama barging into the pack of elite talents at the top. You can see a better view with all the numbers by going to the Google doc linked above. On that document you can change any of the blue cells to compare whichever makuuchi wrestlers you like.

Well that’s all for now, feel free to send us any questions or suggestions and we’ll see you after Nagoya with more pointless stats!

Natsu 2019 Recap

Natsu is complete with plenty of controversy. We’ll try to talk about more than just those few important matches at the end…. Check out out something far cooler than a boring monster truck rally at 57:53 and afterwards join us for what we honestly feel is the best prediction series punishment we’ve ever done. More bonus episodes coming between now and the GSB Japan vacation in July, so let us know what you think on social media or call us at 805-613-SUMO (7816).

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Theme music per David Hall via SoundCloud, commercial music: “Summon the Rawk” Kevin MacLeod ( Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

Natsu 2019 Midway

*Spoilers through day 7*

First week of the Natsu basho is in the books and we’ve got two obvious front-runners. Join us as we somehow turn that into a full hour of content along with our thoughts on the rest of the banzuke. Check out our preview of a fellow talk radio show at 40:06 and give us a call at 805-613-SUMO (7866).

Editor’s note: It took some creative censoring, but I promise I got all of Ryan/Jake’s Game of Thrones babbling covered, no spoilers here.

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Theme music by David Hall via SoundCloud

Natsu 2019 Preview

Sumo’s back, and with it is a new and improved GSB. No, we’re still losers who treat each other poorly, but now we’re on YouTube and Instagram! I suppose that’s pretty cool. Check out our new sponsor at 1:06:07 and our improved Intro to Sumo episode (for real this time, I promise). Leave us a message to tell us how bad an idea this is at 805-613-SUMO (7866).

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Theme music by David Hall and commercial music by Doncler via SoundCloud