Gable was not a coach who encouraged needless risk. In this video, he gives his insights into guts, laces and his thinking on their application in freestyle wrestling. Despite it being a specific subject, Gable’s thoughts reveal intricate, deep-seeded philosophies and perspectives.
Dan Gable: Right now it’s like guts and laces. I’m going to tell you about a gut. If I was coaching, I would probably not let too many people gut. Now with tracked arm gut, that’s a different story. I’m looking at risk. So many people get stepped over on guts and then get pinned or lose the points, it ridiculous. That means it’s a high risk move. Does that mean I’m not going to let you do it? No. I’m going to let you do it, but as soon as I see any kind of fault and I’m going to make sure you know that if you can learn a safer move that’s very similar I want you to do that one.
Probably the only 2 guys that I would really recommend that I’d probably turn loose on guts in my thinking right now would have been John Smith and Randy Lewis. The reason why I would say that is because they have deep arm guts. It’s more like a hip tilt. They get so deep and they are able to turn their guy so he can’t turn his hip to step over. It’s a deep arm gut instead of just a lock around the waist so it’s more like what we do in our wrestling. We have hip tilts a lot. They were able to do the gut from there. I don’t think I ever saw any of those guys get stepped over and I feel good about that. It would be a move that I’d be very skeptical on doing on somebody. I’d always be worried they were going to lose even though there’s 10 seconds to go if they went for a gut.
Daryl Weber: It’s interesting that you said that coach because when I teach my high school guys I always start off teaching a gut but mainly so they can get the feel of a gut wrench defense because they’re going to see that a lot.
Dan Gable: You’re right.
Daryl Weber: Then I like to move to the ankle lace and when it comes down to it until I see that they’ve got the gut wrench down I want them doing ankle laces because they don’t get stepped over. They don’t get in trouble.
Dan Gable: No, I agree. The other thing, the reason why you do learn a gut and an ankle lace is mostly from defense.