Host City: Los Angeles, United States
Venue(s): Anaheim Convention Center, Anaheim, California, USA
Date Started: July 31, 1984
Date Finished: August 2, 1984
Format: Two groups of competitors. Placement within each group decided by a series of matches with positive points awarded for each result, from 4.0 for victory by fall, to 0.0 for defeat by fall. When three wrestlers remained within a group, they wrestled a round-robin series to determine the top three placements within the group. The winners of each group then wrestled for 1st and 2nd place. Runners-up in each group wrestled for 3rd and 4th place. Third-place finishers within each group wrestled for 5th and 6th place..
Most of the top super-heavyweights were eliminated by the Soviet-led boycott, with the lone exception of Yugoslav Serb Refik Memišević. In the final of Group A Memišević lost on passivity to American Jeff Blatnick. Blatnick had no significant international record and had not been expected to make the American team, as Pete Lee was the favorite, but Blatnick defeated him at the US Trials. Blatnick was also recovering from Hodgkins’ Disease, diagnosed in 1982, but he won Group A, despite a loss to Greek Panagiotis Poikilidis. Blatnick then met Sweden’s [Tomas Johansson] in the final and won an inspirational gold medal on points, 2-0, breaking a scoreless tie with only 1:04 left in the match when he took down the larger Johansson. In September 1985 Blatnick’s cancer returned but he survived it with long courses of chemotherapy. He died fairly young from heart disease, at 55-years-old in 2012, having survived his Hodgkins’ Disease.
After the Olympics it was revealed that Johansson had tested positive for methenolone and his medal was rescinded, moving Memišević up to the silver medal position. Johansson later won the 1986 world championship, finished third at the 1988 Olympics, and second at the 1992 Olympics.
|1||Jeff Blatnick||27||United States||USA||Gold|
|6T||Antonio La Penna||23||Italy||ITA|
|AC||Tomas Johansson||22||Sweden||SWE||DQ doping|