As outlined leading into the 2022 World Championships in Belgrade, Serbia, Jordan Burroughs has a lot on the line this week.
History is on the line. His legacy could be greatly strengthened or diminished depending on outcome.
On Thursday, he only strengthened his legendary status as he steamrolled through the opposition on the way to the World Championships final at 79 kg. Burroughs went 4-0 on the day and outscored his opponents 43-4 along the way.
Burroughs first beat Turkmenistan’s Sahergeldi Saparmyradov 12-1 in the qualifying round. Midway through the first period, Burroughs blew the match open with one of his patented feet-to-back double-leg takedowns (see below) to go up 8-1.
Then in the second round, Burroughs downed North Macedonia’s Dejan Mitrov 12-1 in under a minute. Burroughs showed off his full repertoire of tricks, as he scored on a pair of blast doubles then a leg-lace turn. Then Burroughs went single-leg for a score before ending things with a go-behind and a gut-wrench turn out of bounds for the win.
In the quarters, Burroughs took on Kyrgyzstan’s Arsalan Budazhapov. The match started with a lot of hand fighting, but Burroughs quickly went up 3-0 with a pair of double-legs that led to a step-out and a takedown. Then after earning a point due to Budazhapov going on the activity clock, Burroughs hit another double-leg onto his opponent’s back for four points. Burroughs then hit a go-behind for a takedown right before the end of the period for the 10-0 technical superiority win.
Onto the semis, Burroughs faced Bulgaria’s Ali Pasha Ruslanovich Umarpashaev. The Bulgarian held off Burroughs to start the match, but the American earned a step-out to open the scoring. Then Umarpashaev tied things up with a nice hip-toss on Burroughs’ shot attempt for a step-out point. Burroughs added another step-out before securing a takedown on a go-behind to end the period up 4-1.
In the second period, Burroughs hit a double on the edge and was able to keep the action in bounds for a leg lace and two more points for the exposure. Burroughs was later dinged a caution point for unnecessary roughness as he got heavy on his collar tie, but the call was questionable at best. Up 8-2 at this point, Burroughs added to his lead with another step-out point on yet another double leg attempt.
With under a minute left, Burroughs pushed Umarpashaev, who then tip-toed the out of bounds line. Burroughs then went in for the kill but the move was called a shove, so Burroughs was awarded no points, eventually ending the match the 9-2 victor. Watch it below.
I found this amusing.
Burroughs moves on to face Iran’s Mohammad Nokhodilarimi in a rematch of last year’s World final that Burroughs won 5-1. Nokhodilarimi is into the final, but he had to win a couple one-point matches to get here. Burroughs should be heavily favored.
Check back tomorrow to see if Burroughs wins his US record 7th World/Olympic gold medal.