Three Olympic athletes surprised many “One Piece” fans after striking poses of two famous Straw Hat members at the 2020 Tokyo Games.
New Nakama: Miltiadis Tentoglou of Greece made a steamy entrance during the grand finals of the long jump on Aug. 2, according to Anime News Network.
The 23-year-old athlete imitated Monkey D. Luffy’s Gear Second pose during his entrance. Tentoglou explained the reference to reporters post-match and said, “If you know, you know,” Kotaku reported. “It’s from One Piece.”
American shot putter Payton Otterdahl, 25, had also gone viral online for imitating Franky, another member of Luffy’s Straw Hat pirates, Comicbook reported. Not just his pose, but Otterdahl can also be seen mouthing Franky's iconic catchphrase, "SUPER!"
Italian athlete Massimo Stano, 29, finished his 20-kilometer (12-mile) race walk with his thumb inside his mouth — the pose Luffy does when he is about to enter Gear Third. Stano is also a fan of “One Piece,” as seen in his Instagram account.
The show’s official Instagram account congratulated the athletes for their win at the Tokyo Games.
What the show is about: “One Piece” follows the story of Luffy and his Straw Hat crew as they travel from East Blue through the Grand Line and New World in search of the mythical treasure, One Piece, left by the late Pirate King Gol D. Roger.
The series was voted the most popular manga of all time by 33,600 people out of 150,000 in January this year.
Other anime references: “One Piece” is not the only anime referenced by athletes at the Tokyo Games.
Cambodian American Olympic diver Jordan Windle, 22, did the fusion dance from anime "Dragon Ball Z" with fellow American diver Brandon Loschiavo, 24, at the Games.
Takaharu Furukawa, a 36-year-old member of the Japanese men’s archer team, dropped a reference to the anime/manga “Is the order a rabbit?” while speaking to reporters, saying, “My heart feels like it's bouncing (pyonpyon)." Anime News Network explained the reference is a line from the show’s opening song “Daydream café.”
Chinese Taipei archer Deng Yu-Cheng, 22, became viral after a fan shared a conversation they had with the athlete, where he referenced the iconic line of Arash in “Fate/Grand Order.”
“When you shoot off an arrow, do you say 'I am the bone of my sword?'" the fan asks Deng, referencing Archer in “Fate/stay night,” to which he replies, “No, actually, I generally say 'Stella!!!'"
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