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Swami Strikes Again! And Says Nunn Can Get it Done in Hartford

As reader/trainer deluxe Paul Finn commented all the way from Hawaii on my Facebook page, “that’s why they call you the Swami!” What Mr. Finn was referring to, of course, was my concern over Hidetada Yamagishi being on the competitor’s list for this past weekend’s Tampa Pro. As I blogged last, the dude has competed in just about every show since the year began, and could be heading for the Silveo Samuel route. That flick was called “Burnout.” Samuel, the last-ever IRON MAN PRO champ in 2009, finally fell prey to the long and hard dieting he underwent the past few years after competing way too often, and wasn’t nearly at his best come Olympia time, where he finished out of the top 10. Didn’t compete at all this season; I haven’t talked personally to Samuel, but rumors were flying that he had some health problems. Hopefully nothing too serious…a return in 2011, I would imagine.

As most of you know by now, Yamagishi, Japan’s first-ever pro, had to pull out of the Tampa event after pre-jududging due to a knee injury. But, he was in 7th at that point, and would not have landed in the top five if he was able to continue. Now, he is sitting out the next two Europa shows in Hartford and Dallas, and is hoping to be at his best for the O. Hide has about 9 weeks to pull things together. Another top 10 finish might be tough to duplicate now. Should I include him in my top 10 Olympia picks, which will be filmed the weekend of the USA?

Back to Tampa. Congrats to Ben White for his victory there, and to Troy Alves (2nd) and Johnnie Jackson (3rd) for also qualifying for the Olympia. Before you ask me if Ben can make the top 10, I’d say he probably won’t even be on stage: remember, he’s due to battle Stan Efferding in the World’s Strongest Bodybuilder competition held that weekend at the Expo. With $10,000 on the line Jackson, last year’s inagural champ, is supposedly training Ben to his battle with Stan. I’m going with Efferding. Put up or shut up, gang.

However, Ben assured all listeners on Pro Bodybuilding Weekly radio tonight that he will make it two wins in a row this weekend in Hartford. The former USA champ did look good in Tampa; however, I must go against the grain one more time. I’m going with Ed Nunn upset Big Ben this weekend. But, what I’m really looking forward to is for is Cedric McMillan’s pro debut in Dallas next month. I think the rookie can win it, and be a top 6 guy at the Olympia.

Thumbs up to Jose Raymond, who also reached the winner’s circle in Florida, taking the 202 and under. Steve Namat and Tricky Jackson followed in the next two slots, respectively, so we’ll see those gents at the Olympia in that division as well.

I’m out.

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