2010 Men’s Arnold Classic Review

I just got back from the 2010 Arnold Classic. What a whirlwind weekend. Let’s start our coverage with the  biggest Arnold Classic event, the men’s bodybuilding.

The winner for the second year in a row was Kai Green.  The funny thing about Kai Green is you’re never sure if he’s going to get his weight down to where he needs to be to really have that shredded, lean look that Kai Green’s known for.  So you hear rumors that he’s 300 pounds a couple of weeks out from the show.  You say it’s impossible for him to get down, but he always manages to lose about 20-25 pounds and show up in great shape.

This year he was point on again as always.  Showed crazy thigh development and he improved his leg condition from the year before. His dance routine was amazing as always and he wooed the crowd.

He did fade a little bit in the evening show; he looked like he was holding a little film of water.  Nothing too bad to the point that you didn’t think Kai was going to win it.  I would like to see Kai with more defined traps; his traps don’t peak as much as they should.  Their  thick but they are not high peaked traps like when you look at Branch Warren’s where you say they’re thick to his ear.

His presentation, as always, wins the crowd over.  Best poser, totally.  But he did do a handstand which is very impressive. Kai was favorite but he almost got upset by Phil Heath.

Phil Heath, who came in second, did show an incredible physique but was better in the day.  During the day, at the pre-judging I said to myself, “Oh this is the next Arnold Classic Champion.”  Full sweep in bellies especially his arms, his back and rear double bicep pose was amazing.  His skin tone was very good . He didn’t have a leathery look that a lot of the competitors did.  I don’t know if it was his tanning that he put on, but Phil looked really good but his color looked off.

I heard Phil telling people backstage that he felt amazing.  He just didn’t have enough muscle, especially lat width on himself to beat Kai tonight because it really seems that is where judging was going.

Number three was Branch Warren, Branch looked amazing.  His conditioning was point on.  The striations in his hamstrings were amazing.  You could see every single fiber of his hamstrings.  You know a lot of the guys have a couple good lines in their legs; Branch was ripped from head to toe.

Would like to see a little more detail in his back, his back is wide.  His back is thick.  But I want to see a little more detail, kind of like the great detail that Phil had.  I would like to see that in Branch.  I don’t know if it’s how he trains or whatever, but he needs a little more detail in his back.

Great routine.  Won the most muscular award again.  I would have liked to see Branch place a little higher.  Wouldn’t have had any problems if the judges had put him second and Phil third after how Phil faded at the night.  I could have easily seen it go Phil, Branch, Kai.  I could have seen it go Phil, Kai, Branch, so that top three was very, very close.

Dexter Jackson came in fourth.  Wasn’t as sharp as he was supposed to be. He looked a little bit off.  He looked like he was holding a little bit of water especially in his legs.  Not really what you would expect to see from Dexter, but Dexter just didn’t have that sharp crisp look that he had when he won the Olympia two years ago.

Number five was Tony Freeman.  Tony again, great package.  I wonder how much his height really hurts him.  Tony at 6’1” has to build so much more muscle then the other guys that are 5’9”, 5’8”, 5’”10,that makes a difference.  He did look a little bit sharper as the judging went on. He had a very slow, fluid routine.  He’s known for that style but there is something about his routine that I didn’t really, it didn’t make me sit up and say, “Oh my god that guy is going to win.”

Rounding out number six, Ronnie Rockel.  This guy came out of no where.  Very sharp conditioning, great symmetry, great proportions; he had great striations in his delts and arms.  Very noticeable. His side chest was great.  His front double bicep was fantastic.  Quad and abs – point on.  I was very impressed with him tonight.  Great sixth place finish.  I could have easily saw him fifth and Tony Freeman sixth, so.

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