August 24, 2004

Four years ago, Rulon Garder beat the greatest Greco-Roman wrestler of all time: Alexander Karelin. Gardner was viewed by some as an imposter. He's definitely not as romantic a figure - here are Karelin's thoughts on losing. In any case, Karelin is now back as a spectator to see how Gardner fares.

posted by lbergstr to other at 03:16 PM - 3 comments

This was basically an excuse to post that link to Karelin's site. The English isn't perfect, but you get the sense of a proud, thoughtful man dealing with a brilliant career that ended in a totally unexpected defeat. The attitude of my relatives, friends, colleagues, ordinary people who met me only through Internet, became different, but not negative, just more careful. Hundreds letters came on my e-mail address, and no letters contain a reproach, only words: " Sasha, you are the best no matter what! ". And, there were letters both from our compatriots and Americans. I remember one girl sent me a drawing of a kitten as a talisman for good future. In the beginning, the words "no matter what" just killed me, but time is the best doctor.

posted by lbergstr at 03:19 PM on August 24, 2004

I always thought this was a great story. So what if Gardner ends up another Buster Douglas? He won. Of that, there is no dispute.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 01:41 PM on August 25, 2004

Gardner took home the bronze, and was completely classy about not winning gold. He's a very well-spoken and thoughtful guy, and I'll always respect him. No shame in being third best in the world, right? Bummer that he's retiring.

posted by Samsonov14 at 02:40 PM on August 25, 2004

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.