Battle of the Giants
This Saturday, diaper-clad monsters invade Madison Square Garden for the first time since 1992 with the World S.U.M.O. Challenge: Battle of The Giants. To help you grasp the enormity this long-awaited collision of muscle, bone, and jiggling adipose, we've compiled this definitive guide.The Deal: Twenty-four of the world's fiercest sumo wrestlers, divided into four teams -- Black Tiger, Iron Mountain, Shadow Jin, and Wrath of Heaven -- engage in clan warfare until only one hero remains. The Rules: Basically a fight's done when a wrestler's knocked out of the ring, touches the ground with something other than his feet, or commits an illegal move, like grabbing his opponent's hair, throat, or tantalizingly accessible groin.The Moves: Besides huge men slamming into one another, there's huge men pushing one another (oshi-dashi), and huge men slapping one another (tzuki-dashi) -- a jarring technique that can throw an opponent off-balance, sending rippling shockwaves from his chins to his elephantine calves.The Contenders:The Hugest: Torsten Sheibler of Germany and Deszo Libor of Hungary, both a svelte 418lbs. The Smartest: Former Yale tailback Kena Heffernan, who at only 250lbs relies on wiliness to avoid being eaten by Torsten and Deszo.The Local: Carl Pappalardo, a 6'3", 330 pounder from New Paltz, NY, known for his strength, agility, and cruelly appropriate last name.The Pre-Game: Just like the Republican National Convention before it, the Battle will be preceded by an entertainment extravaganza involving music, lights, acrobats, and actors. The contestants will then march into the arena to the banging of Taiko drums -- enormous instruments that, like the wrestlers themselves, perform best when beaten with huge wooden mallets.This event is returning from its long hiatus because the Japanese-dominated International Sumo Federation has been lobbying furiously to get the sport into the Olympics. By attending, you'll serve as proof of sumo's international appeal -- impressing the IOC, and boosting the hopes of fat-letes everywhere.