Eighteen of the top IFBB MP Pros are poised and ready to hit the stage this weekend in Vegas. There has been a lot of talk about who’s going to come out on top and walk away with the 2014 title. So who's it going to be? I have put together a complete breakdown of the competitors so you will know what to expect from each of these men as they take the stage in hopes of doing just that and making their mark in the Men’s Physique history book.
Matt is definitely one of the most improved in the MP division since its inception in 2011. He has done very well to push his body towards its genetic potential without pushing too far and losing the Men’s Physique look. Matt is a little wider in the waist and doesn’t have the natural taper that some of the other competitors have, but he is sure to bring a top notch package to the stage. How he places will be a function of what he has done over the last few months to bring down the waist.
Michael is always a threat when he hits the stage. He has one of the most impressive V-Tapers in the business. Confident, poised and focused are three words that describe the winner of many pro shows Michael Anderson. He is not as balanced when comparing upper to lower body as some of the other competitors; however, he has a great overall shape. He will come in full and well-conditioned and will be a threat for the Top 5.
Tyler does well on the IFBB stage and it feels like the MP division was made for him. He has a very small waist and wide shoulders to match. His distribution of height upper compared to lower serves to make for an even more dramatic appearance of taper. Tyler will finish Top 10 and if he is able to come in full and dry he has a shot at Top 5.
Anton has one of most aesthetically pleasing physiques to take to the IFBB MP stage. Though his taper isn’t as dramatic as some that will be hitting the stage, his balance and symmetry top to bottom is top tier. A Top 10 finish should easily be within Anton’s grasp. With his overall shape, look and attitude he is a wildcard for the Top 5 as long as he is lean enough.
The switch from BB to MP has proven a great move for Jeremy. His small waist and wide shoulders make the division ideal for him. The majority of times Jeremy is on stage he is full, his conditioning is on point, and his presentation is strong. Jeremy has the tools and shape to finish Top 3.
Matt is the first ever MP Pro and it’s good to see him hitting the stage as a top notch representative of the sport. Matt always comes in with nice full muscle bellies and he can be as dry as the judges want him. Despite Matt’s incredibly mature muscle mass, round delts, and conditioning, he’s still a little narrow at the top which can hurt his taper. If he has added some mass to his lats in the weeks away from the stage he could find himself climbing back up the ranks. I expect Matt to be full and very dry and to finish in the Top 10.
Steve has been a frontrunner in the MP division since before it even really started all the way back to the 2010 M&F Male Model Search at the Olympia. Steve has the classic shape and looks that have served him well to this point. He hasn’t taken to the stage nearly as often as many of the other competitors and that may hurt him in the big show. He has the ability to finish Top 5 if he brings the same package as last time on stage but a tiny bit larger. To make this happen though he will need to be 100% on point when it comes to conditioning.
Felipe has a nice taper. His overall shape is pleasing. To be a threat at “The O” he needs to round out his delts and bring up his conditioning a notch.
Xavisus has been a fixture on the MP stage since the beginning. He is one of these guys that truly has fun on stage which is an important factor. His conditioning continues to improve from show to show. He has a good build for MP but is not displaying the taper to as high a degree as needed at the big show. In order to place high at “The O” he needs to add width to the delts and add lat mass.
Sadik has undoubtedly one of the best shoulder to waist ratios in the MP division. This is a very important factor in how he has placed so well to date. Upon recent viewings of his pics he seems to be right on track for his best look yet. The concern about Sadik is the relatively dramatic changes in size from “off-season” to “on-season.” Sometimes he loses weight too quickly and he comes in a too light and a little flat. If he comes in as conditioned as usual and keeps his weight up he could easily finish Top 3.
German has great potential. Overall his shape is right on and conditioning is on point. More back thickness would be the main structural component for German to work on. However, the most important thing for German to do to increase his chances at “The O” is to improve his posing. In stage photos he seems a bit concave which largely takes away from his physique.
Jason has been a favorite for all of 2014 and it’s not going to be any different at “The O.” Though his waist is not as small as other competitors, he has a top notch overall shape, plenty of mature muscle and manages to come in very lean and quite full to most of his shows. I expect the best ever Poston this weekend and a Top 3 finish.
Tonnell is one of the newer guys on the block at the Pro level. He displays an adequate level of conditioning and is one of those guys that seems to have fun on stage. You never know how important that can be in a given show. He needs to work on filling out the chest to be a threat at “The O.”
Arya has a great shoulder to waist ratio. He has all the tools to be a top competitor in years to come. At this point though he will be out-muscled by some guys that have had more years in the gym and put together a more mature physique. Watch for Arya in the next couple years to make waves.
Johnny is a showman and always has one of the best presentations in the MP division. He is also well versed in winning a crowd over from his years of competing as a BB before the MP division was created. Johnny brings a great physique loaded with awesome mature muscle that is sure to be full and conditioned. The challenge for Johnny is that he doesn’t come in too blown up and look bodybuilder-ish. If he can keep his look streamlined he has a good chance of finishing Top 10.
Jeff has a good shape for MP. The question mark with Jeff is muscle maturity. I don’t think he can bring what is necessary at this point to compete with men that have been putting in the work for years and years.
Mark Anthony Wingson
Mark as the defending champion is one of the favorites at “The O” and every time he takes the stage for that matter. Mark’s stage charisma and signature posing presentation style are two of his greatest allies. He has a good foundation of muscle from his previous years as a bodybuilder. If he comes in at his leanest and dry it will be hard to push him out of the Top 3.
Tory is an athlete and it shows. Overall he has a pleasing look that translates to placing well on the MP stage. He has a small waist and is small in the joints while displaying good muscle fullness which contributes to his overall athletic look. Tory’s placing is going to depend heavily on if he comes in full. If Tory is bigger than we have ever seen him in the past and still as lean as usual he’s a wildcard to place very well.
Best of luck to all of these men as they are sure to make all of us in the MP division proud to be part of such a great group of athletes.