By Andy Hamilton
Kamal Bey tucked the American flag inside his singlet straps and draped it over his back like a superhero wearing a red, white and blue cape.
In a sense, that’s what he became this summer for USA Wrestling’s Greco-Roman program after blazing through the 74-kilogram bracket at the Junior World Championships, capturing the title with a scintillating performance in Finland.
Bey scored 61 points in five matches on his march to gold. Nobody else in the Greco-Roman tournament scored more than 44.
“Every time I step on the mat it’s show time,” Bey said. “People always say, ‘You always have such high-scoring matches. You throw him, he throws you.’ That’s just how I wrestle. I figure if I throw him more times than he can possibly throw me, I end up winning the match.
“I’m never afraid to let loose. People are afraid to pull the trigger, and that’s a big problem. I hate wrestling boring matches. A 1-1 match where I win on passivity is devastating to me because I feel like I should dominate everybody I wrestle. I understand some matches won’t go that way and it is what it is, but if we’re not out attempting throws, there’s no point.”
Bey will put his high-scoring, high-flying style on display again Oct. 8 in Rochester, Minn., at the U-23 Trials, which will be streamed live on Trackwrestling. The Illinois native is aiming to grab his second World gold in 2017, which would lend credence to the sentiment that he’s the new face of the franchise for the American Greco-Roman program.