Takenori Akagi
Takenori Akagi
Year: 3rd Year
Height: 197 cm
Weight: 90 kg
Jersey Number: #4
Position: Center
Takenori Akagi is the captain of the Shohoku basketball team and Haruko's older brother. Despite at first not thinking too much of Sakuragi (who addresses him as "Gori" for gorilla due to his immense physical presence), he actually realizes Sakuragi's potential as a basketball player. Serious and disciplined, Akagi's dream is to lead Shohoku to the national championship. His determination is shown in the match against Kainan, where he played on despite a serious injury to his ankle. Akagi considers Uozumi of Ryonan to be his biggest rival, though their rivalry is not antagonistic; indeed, there is respect that borders on friendship.
Akagi differs from the other starters in two respects. First, he is the most academically talented out of all them and is considered a model student. After the loss to Aiwa knocks Shohoku out of the Nationals, Akagi leaves the team along with Kogure to study for the college entrance exams. In contrast, the other four had to beg their teacher to be given the chance to retake some exams they had flunked; they would otherwise have been disqualified from playing in the Nationals for having failed too many classes. Second, Akagi is the only starter not to have gotten into an actual fight, although he has used physical force against his own players (most notably Sakuragi, and once Mitsui after the gym fight) to keep them in line. He is the only other character besides Rukawa able to take one of Sakuragi's trademark headbutts without being knocked out and the only other character who has had Sakuragi inadvertently dunk a ball on his head (Murasame of Miuradai was the second, in the manga; in the anime, the second one to be dunked on the head is Naito, also from Miuradai).
Regarded as the best center in the Kanagawa prefecture, Akagi plays as a fairly typical center, using his height and power to score close to the basket. He also has a reputation for being a virtually unbeatable defender. As captain of the team, he keeps discipline among his players during matches. Akagi met his match during the game against Sannoh, in the form of Masashi Kawata, considered one of the best centers at the high school level. Initially intimidated when Kawata outplayed him, he regained his confidence thanks to Uozumi's encouragement and led his team to victory. 


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