The Storm Report with Coach Dan Chandler – September 21 – Five Point Trip
Things are different. Not just some things, almost everything to do with how the Greco-Roman United States has been forced to function over the past year is at least a little different. Tournaments run out of order, training plans are overhauled, and now with a fresh Olympiad in the rearview mirror, wrestlers are trying new or different weight categories. It’s been a lot of change, sure. But one thing that hasn’t changed is the unparalleled expertise that Minnesota Storm head coach Dan Chandler brings to our sport.
The Storm are preparing to embark on the 2021 Global Senior Team Trials with an extremely well-rounded roster in terms of time and talent. As is often the case, Patrick smith is the main topic. Double World Teamer and gold at the 2019 Pan Am Games won’t arrive this week in Lincoln, Nebraska, with his eyes set on the 77-kilogram spot. Instead, Smith is gearing up for a return to 72 kilograms, where he will be the No.1 seed. Coach Chandler briefly addresses Smith’s decision, explaining why he thinks the decision makes sense. Other team members are also discussed, including Griffin parriott (72kg). Parriott made his Senior Open debut in April and immediately impressed. Due to his earlier successes in his youth, expectations are high, and Chandler shares his own perspectives on Parriott’s potential viability in Lincoln – and beyond.
The projector then belongs to Donny Longendyke (130 kg), who had just missed out on national team honors at the Olympic trials before winning a silver medal at the Pan American Championships on short notice a month later. The idea of Longendyke being underrated is brought up, with Chandler pointing out the natural ability his heavyweight can lean on, as well as the missing piece he sees as a significant advantage.
5 p.m .: How did the preparation for the World Team Trials go when it’s the first event of the season and there hasn’t been a tournament since spring? It must sound strange, right?
Coach Dan Chandler: Yes, it’s weird, but in many ways it’s the same. I think (Patrick) Smith had the hardest time bouncing back after the Olympic Trials. He was trying to figure out what he was going to do. Was he going to retire? Was he not will retire and continue to struggle? The other guys haven’t done much, but they’re excited. They trained very hard. We will introduce ourselves and see how they do it.
5 p.m .: Were you surprised by Pat decides to give 72 another chance?
DC: No. It makes sense for him. It will be to his advantage. He will be bigger for his weight class. As long as he reduces his weight well, I think it will be good for him. He will be bigger and stronger in this weight class.
5pm: Griffin Parriott has now embarked on a senior career and had some very impressive national championships in April. You alluded earlier to how it might surprise some people. How did his progress materialize? Is he on the track that people like me imagine since he was an age group?
DC: Yeah, he’s totally in it. He is totally committed. I don’t know if it will be the year or not. But in three years? If he does all the right things, goes to all the right competitions and finds the right weight class, then he should be a force to be reckoned with.
5 p.m .: Ryan Epps from last October really established its presence. In every tournament so far for him he’s been a major factor. Epps just took second place at the Nationals from another guy in your room of course, Alec ortiz. This mix with Pat, Ortiz, Epps and Griffin… All in the same weight range…
Coach Dan Chandler: We are really strong there. Epps, Ortiz, Parriott, (James) Foy, Smith… And then we have Calvin (Germinaro). We also have a few bigger guys who are pretty tough. Our room is fine. I’m happy. Epps is in the same boat (like Parriott). If he does the right things over the next three years, he will be in there. It’s still a baby, you know. His final year in high school he was an All-American, Greco and Freestyle double. And then we didn’t see him for four years while he was in Augsburg. Now he’s back, but he’s struggling in some positions. He’s a heckuva pummeler, but he’s not yet good at some posts. He’s not as gifted of a natural athlete as a Parriott or a Foy, or a Calvin. But Smith isn’t a great natural athlete, either. It has a speed, it goes in and makes you back up. We just need a lot of more work on the floor. We need more fresh blood, more bodies. But it’s the same everywhere.
5pm: Donny (Longendyke) has been excellent for a long time but I also think he has been underestimated.
DC: He really is a gifted athlete. But that said, we just haven’t been able to find a training partner for him. He doesn’t have enough partners, but what a gifted natural athlete. He still has a lot of potential, he just needs more partners. I don’t think I’ve ever seen him get angry. A very sweet and easy going guy. Great competitor.
5 p.m .: Finally, there’s Rich Carlson, of whom I’m a big fan and he’s another tough athlete, very experienced, but also who had to get away at times. Its recent military obligations are one example. He will be back for this tournament. How is he ?
Coach Dan Chandler: You know Carlson’s in the Minnesota National Guard, so he’s been posted at times. He’s just a badass. He’s strong, he’s in good shape. He has taken a long period of rest, but he is in very good shape. He runs marathons so he’s in good physical condition. It will be fun to see him on the mat again.
Opinion: Trying to get the ‘term_id’ property of the non-object in /home/fivepointwp/webapps/fivepointwp/wp-content/themes/flex-mag/functions.php in line 999