Kobayashi getting scared

Well we already know that Takeru Kobayashi is no longer the king of the hot dog eating castle. Joey Chestnut, the competitive eater with the best non-pornstar name ever, has already broken the 12-minute record.

With a much anticipated showdown next Wednesday at the July 4, Coney Island Nathan’s Hot Dog competition, it seems Kobayashi is starting to make excuses if he loses, or worse, doesn’t show up to compete.

Takeru “Tsunami” Kobayashi said he can only open his mouth to make a gap the size of a fingertip after being diagnosed with jaw arthritis.

In an entry on his blog entitled “Occupational hazard,” Kobayashi said: “My jaw refused to fight any more.”

The injury occurred only a week after the slender 29-year-old started training to win his seventh straight title at the annual July 4 Nathan’s Famous hot dog eating event at New York’s Coney Island.

“I feel ashamed that I couldn’t notice the alarm bells set off by my own body,” he said.

“But with the goal to win another title with a new record, I couldn’t stop my training so close to the competition.

“I was continuing my training and bearing with the pain but finally I destroyed my jaw.”

Looks like Joey Chestnut has destroyed his spirit. Or maybe, just maybe, he’s setting the stage for the greatest gastro-sports moment. A joyous victory with jaw-arthritis. If that would happen, it would easily join MJ’s Flu Game in the sports pantheon.

Stayed tuned until next Wednesday to see how this plays out.

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