King Kamali thinks Derek Lunsford would ‘look small’ against top five in open bodybuilding

King Kamali explained what Derek Lunsford would look like compared to other elite competitors in the Men’s Open.

It’s been weeks now since the conversation started about Derek Lunsford switch to open bodybuilding. The speculation began when he appeared as a guest setter at the 2022 Pittsburgh Pro alongside some of the men’s Open Open elite competitors. This made many believe he could hold his own if he made the switch. King Kamali is not one of those believers when it comes to Lunsford against the top five.

Lunsford managed to overcome the hump during Olympia 2021 and win the 212 title. He had been vying for this honor for years and was finally able to reach the top. Now, it looks like he’s put on more muscle mass this offseason. This has many in the sport doubting his chance to defend his 212 title this year, including Olympia president Dan Solomon.

READ MORE: Dan Solomon says Derek Lunsford might not be at Olympia without a special invite

Derek Lunsford might need a special invite to compete in this year’s Olympia Bodybuilding Open. Great Rummy received this invitation before his title in 2020. He did not earn enough qualifying points to make it and received an invitation from the committee. Maybe that’s the way Lunsford needs to work, too.

It’s unclear if Lunsford will ultimately receive that invite, but there’s still time. It’s clear he’s training for the Men’s Open, but would he be able to sneak into the top five?

Derek Lunsford

King Kamali thinks Derek Lunsford would be behind many competitors

Recently, Nick Walker joined Fouad Abiad on his podcast and discussed Derek Lunsford’s status. Walker finished fifth at Olympia last year and believes he can still climb the rankings. When discussing Lunsford, Walker claimed he might be able to crack the top five. Walker even said Lunsford could beat him in the future but not this year.

King Kamali went deeper into the various competitors who would always finish ahead of Lunsford at the Men’s Open.

“I’m just saying there’s going to be a few guys in trouble. So he can’t beat Hadi. He can’t beat, I don’t think he can beat Ramy if Ramy is fit. I don’t know, I don’t think he’ll beat Brandon if Brandon is fit but I think he’s doing really well with all the other guys,” King Kamali explained.

King Kamali then used a quote from Dorian Yates to compare Lunsford’s situation. Yates was told that if Nasser El Sonbaty built his back, he would lose. Yates responded and said “he’s been training for 18 years. What makes you think he’ll recover for a year?

“Derek is a fantastic bodybuilder. He looks great. Great symmetry. He’s made great improvements, okay?”

“When he’s standing next to the top five guys in the Olympia Open class, he’s king for looking small.”

Right now, it looks like Derek Lunsford’s move to the Men’s Open isn’t a question of if but when. When Lunsford decides to take the leap, there will be plenty of eyes on his first show at the next level.

For more news and updates, follow Generation Iron on Facebook, Twitterand instagram.

Teresa E. Burton