Wrestling — one of the oldest, most traditional, and most physical sports the world has ever seen — is being cut from the Olympic Games in 2020.
Forget the fact that wrestling was part of the Olympics in 708 B.C.
Forget the fact that it has been in every Olympics since 1896, with the exception of the 1900 Games.
Forget the fact that 71 nations competed in some form of wrestling at the 2012 London Games and the fact that it was taken out to make room for the Pentathlon, and perhaps you can make an argument as to why wrestling should be removed from the Olympic Games.
The fact of the matter is, wrestling is as much a part of the Olympics as syrup is to pancakes. Sure, you can still have it, but it’s not even close to as good.
Despite the removal of wrestling being an atrocity, the reasoning behind the decision is solid. Ratings are down, and not a lot of money is being made off of it.
But money isn’t everything right? Wrong — at least according to the International Olympic Committee. The Pentathlon, which will be kept instead of wrestling, barely edged wrestling in the profit column in the 2012 London Games. The difference was minuscule.
All hope is not lost, however. Wrestling will still be featured in the 2016 Olympic Games, and I imagine (as long as all the publicity and zeal surrounding the movement doesn’t peak) that a big enough push will be made to at least make the IOC reconsider its brash decision.
Also, with Russia at the helm of a “keep wrestling in the Olympics” movement, the sport won’t go down without a fight, which parallels the sport itself.