Host City: Athina, Greece
Venue(s): Ano Liosia Olympic Hall, Ano Liossia
Date Started: August 24, 2004
Date Finished: August 25, 2004
Format: Round-robin pools, winner of each pool advanced to single-elimination tournament.
The weight class was changed slightly, as the upper limit was now only 120 kg, rather than 130 kg, as it had been since 1988. Aleksandr Karelin was no longer competing which made this class much more open than it had been since the early 1980s. The defending gold medalist, American Rulon Gardner, who had recorded a stunning upset of Karelin in 2000, was back and had won the 2001 World Championships, but had not done much since. The final came down to Russian Khasan Baroyev, the 2003 World Champion, against Kazakh Georgy Tsurtsumia, who was unknown but had defeated Gardner in the semi-finals. Tsurtsumia led throughout the final, and was ahead 2-0 with less than a minute left, when Baroyev threw him for 4 points and won the gold medal, 4-2. Gardner won the bronze medal despite the fact that he was still recovering from a wrist dislocated he had injured only a few months before the Athina Olympics.
|3||Rulon Gardner||32||United States||USA||Bronze|
|13||Yekta Yılmaz Gül||25||Turkey||TUR||3||3|
|14||David Vála||26||Czech Republic||CZE||3||3|