r/OnePiece Sep 05 '22 Silver 1 Helpful 1 Wholesome 1

Could zoro have defeated Arlong (if he wasn’t injured) Discussion

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Sometimes i question myself on if zoro could be luffy in east blue and this is where that thought always goes.

9.2k Upvotes

1.4k

u/demonicafro Thriller Bark Victim's Association Sep 05 '22

Even Arlong was like “I gotta kill this dude NOW, if he’s this strong while he’s as injured as he is”

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u/kentotoy98 Sep 05 '22

Fast forward a few hundred chapters later, Zoro one shots a drugged-up Hody and nearly finishes the Fishman Island arc in one slice.

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u/X_Seed21 Sep 05 '22

While submerged even

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u/DoctorProfJ Sep 05 '22

While holding his breath under water.

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

Underwater mind you. People like to say Zoro is not a speed fighter, because of comparisons to Sanji probably, but he speed blitzed a roided up Hody, underwater.

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u/Pit_shost Sep 05 '22

People like to say Zoro is not a speed fighter

They must have forgot the night at whiskey peak

Oda was showcasing how blazingly fast zoro fights

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u/ArtVarious3822 Sep 05 '22

Whiskey peak night was peak Zoro

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u/Kian3935 Pirate Sep 05 '22

I mean from day 1 Zoro was fast he literally cut down Morgan mid-axe slash. He's fast af.

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u/DLottchula Sep 05 '22

Almost made fishman island a cover story

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u/mambomak Sep 05 '22

Yeah, it was a moment that stuck with me. Luffy was there but he seemed legit terrified of Zoro.

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u/superINEK Sep 05 '22 Silver Gold Helpful Wholesome Heartwarming Table Slap

Notice how Arlong says “did you fall down somewhere” although his injury clearly looks like a sword wound. Arlong clearly mistook that zoros wound was done by none other than Down D. stairs. This also means that Mihawks power level is almost as strong as Down D. Stairs.

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u/MonsieurMidnight Sep 05 '22

Wasn't Down D. Stairs the one that killed Kuina ?

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u/TalpaRex Sep 05 '22

that's why it is equal to mihawk when it comes to Zoro

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u/The_dumb_god Sep 05 '22

Do you guys think zoro cam beat downs brother up D. Stairs

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u/EffectiveCarry9733 Sep 06 '22

His nemesis is Right D. Rection

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

[deleted]

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u/VishnuBhanum Sep 05 '22

Truly Zoro's archnemesis

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u/reddit_poopaholic Sep 05 '22

I'm pretty sure Kuina's nemesis was Down D. Stairs'. Zoro's nemesis was Stairs' brother, Down D. Road...

but when Zoro decided to carry the burden of his former classmate's dream, he took on their nemesis in addition to his own.

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u/Risdit Sep 05 '22

jesus christ.

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u/MonsieurMidnight Sep 05 '22

She indeed meet him

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u/koteshima2nd Sep 05 '22

Down D. Stairs strikes again. You never know when they'll attack

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u/un_belli_vable Sep 05 '22

never let 'em know your next move

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u/BigPoppa906 Sep 05 '22

Yo I’m cracking up in office rn Hahahah Broo that shit caught me off guard 😂

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u/pinkrockr77 Sep 05 '22

this comment is the peak of comedy. i have never seen something so great in my life. thank you for blessing my eyes stranger.

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u/LilTange Sep 05 '22

Yeah, my life has gone to shit, I’m a drug addict alcoholic and severely depressed with serious suicidal thoughts but this comment has changed me in a way nothing else can. It’s beautiful, thank you.

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u/deathsyth220002 Bounty Hunter Sep 05 '22

We're all depressed alcoholics here get in line bub.

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u/ItzDonDonowitz Sep 05 '22

Oh hey everyone look at this guy, he’s rich enough to be a drug addict and an alcoholic, la Dee dah, I can only afford crocodilia from my Romanian dealer, don’t be such a 𓀐𓂸

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u/kyoshee_ Sep 05 '22

now that is too much comedy

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u/Jaystime101 Sep 05 '22

I was in the same place as you a few years ago man, don’t rush it, start small, work on getting rid of the alcohol or the drugs first, but not both at the same time. Balance them so you can at least keep a job. And pull away slow and steady’ you can do it!

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u/Anounymous7931 Sep 05 '22

This is beautiful... I looked at it for an hour now.

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u/Brief-Doubt-5477 Sep 05 '22

Thank you, I almost had a conniption from laughing so hard.

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u/juanltfu Sep 05 '22

I forgot how Insane this scene was, definitely think zoro could've won

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u/Frigoris13 Sep 05 '22

ONI

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u/supersaiyaninfinite Sep 05 '22

GIRI

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u/tipnik_puku Sep 05 '22

purple aura

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u/Big-Substance693 Sep 05 '22

purple haki around sword

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u/Buubakr Sep 05 '22

Dead arlong on the ground

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u/APRobertsVII Sep 05 '22

Zoro could have won.

Luffy would have won more easily if he hadn’t been stupid and gotten himself stuck (which allowed Arlong to throw him in the water).

It can’t be understated how overpowered Luffy and Zoro were in East Blue. Each of them were probably already the two most powerful pirates (once Zoro accepted the position) in East Blue upon meeting one another.

The only pirate clearly more powerful than the two of them was Mihawk, who had come back from the Grand Line.

As for other powerful figures, Dragon was there but we didn’t know anything about him and he isn’t a pirate. Smoker was also there, but I honestly believe the only reason Luffy couldn’t overpower him in Loguetown was due to being unable to hit Logias.

Honestly, even looking at the first part of the Grand Line, I’m not sure Luffy has much difficulty with Crocodile or Eneru if they aren’t Logias. When they met, he was clearly able to deal major damage the moment he was able to hit them.

I think Rob Lucci may have been the first opponent who straight up could have beaten Luffy without hax.

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u/Senqqq Sep 05 '22

Yes

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u/gablielthedog Sep 05 '22

What makes u say that.

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u/Unluckysol23 Sep 05 '22 Silver Helpful Wholesome

Zoro and Luffy fought equally back in Whiskey peak and are stated equals in vivre cards in East Blue. Zoro without his main swords and near death bodied Hachi who’s no slouch compared to Arlong. The story pretty much implies Zoro would have been able to fight if not win vs Arlong if he wasn’t half dead

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u/Kulangot14 Sep 05 '22

I think thats exactly the reason why Oda decided to badly injured Zoro

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u/4Dv8 Sep 05 '22

Pretty much why it always happens aka multiple people later on

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u/mas_freed Sep 05 '22

I always thinking that is because Zoro promise.

Oda wanted to give Zoro clear goal and cool side kick for Luffy, but those promise have drawbacks as well.

Those promise prevent Zoro to do any usual Shonen main character fight pattern. Looks gonna win (hope) -> Lose -> find resolve and motivation or power up -> win overcome the obstacle. The promise take away the 'lose' part since if Zoro lose, he brake his promise to Luffy.

This is why Zoro hardly seems to hard progress(except mr1 and king) in each of his fight. In Zoro fans eyes no body could give Zoro hard fight while in fact Zoro cannot do usual Shonen fight pattern because of his promise. Oda solutions was give Zoro wound before fight.

But on the topic of east blue, Zoro did equal to Luffy.

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u/MeAnIntellectual1 Sep 05 '22

Zoro also progressed against Kaku

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u/taveren3 Sep 05 '22

He wasn't push near as hard in that fight

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u/MeAnIntellectual1 Sep 05 '22

Zoro took a lot of hits against Kaku. Zoro was getting his ass whooped until he brought out Ashura

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u/christheredbeard Sep 05 '22

Giraffe man in Water 7 put up a good fight as well

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u/laraere Sep 05 '22

Plus Zoro's bad sense of direction, its a gag but its also a very convenient way to take him out of the equation at the start of story arcs.

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u/ragingOcean Sep 05 '22

Even in the movies he takes zoro out or zoro beat his opponent in 4 seconds lol. He very strong man

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u/LarsEinar Sep 05 '22

Didn't he lose to Enel tho?

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u/DiabloBratz Sep 05 '22

I mean anyone without haki would’ve lost to enel, Luffy only stood a chance because of his lucky dumb luck that rubber was a hard counter against lighting, otherwise he would’ve got one shorted himself.

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u/awanby Sep 05 '22

i think he’s asking in the context of breaking his promise to Luffy

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u/II_Vortex_II Sep 05 '22

He also lost against kizaru and aokiji If that counts

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u/Puzzleheaded-Newt-20 Sep 05 '22

I always thought Zoro's Promise only retaining to swordsman though

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u/Dry_Entertainment373 Sep 05 '22

I think the point should still count, as Enel was a special case that only Luffy, out of convenience, was able to counter. Besides it wasn't a 1 on 1, Enel faced 4 opponents in that scene.

So technically when it comes to Zoros own opponents, he has fulfilled his promise to Luffy.

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u/FuMarco Sep 05 '22

This is cool. Never thought in this way. That's why he's always injured! Ahah

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u/Mr_ChiefS Sep 05 '22

Thats the reason it makes him a badass character while it not being a plot hole

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u/Chromeboy12 Sep 05 '22

They literally need plot devices to prevent Zoro from being too overpowered. He's always either injured badly as a handicap, or he's just lost for most of the arc until it's time to fight the second strongest enemy because otherwise he alone would likely destroy half the enemies. .

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u/dinosaur_from_Mars Void Month Survivor Sep 05 '22

Even against King, I wonder if Enna was a handicap or a buff. A highly injured Zoro nonetheless .

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u/11throwaway69420 Sep 05 '22

And continued to over and over thoughout the story. Seriously zoro with an awakened zoan would be op af dude got that human recovery speed in a world of super powers and he's still a monster.

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u/TTVBlueGlass Sep 05 '22

I think Zoro would most like the fruit of Mad Monk Uruoge, which turns sustained damage into attack power. Coupled with his insane ability to stay in his feet, it would require no style change and would only make him even more powerful as he gets more hurt. Only downside is being unable to swim.

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u/Kulangot14 Sep 05 '22

Probably would still do until the last arc lol

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u/WatteOrk Sep 05 '22

After timeskip was literally the first time Zoro was ever on 100%.

Luffy found him almost starved in which state he had to get through already tough enemies in Orange Town and Syrup Village. He carried the wounds from Mihawk far into the grand line, always getting new ones (Little garden and his fight against Daz Bones) until facing an enemy he couldnt even hope to beat with Enel.

And that carries on through the series until he meets Mihawk again.

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u/Maxg2909 Sep 05 '22

exactly, zorro and luffy have been on the same level for a long time, but zorro just didn't get to fight the strongest guys since luffy is the main character and "has to" defeat every major villain to keep up with the repetitive shonen philosophy

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u/Loginn122 Sep 05 '22

And he did that by combining it with giving him a big goal. Brilliant.

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u/Corgiboom2 Sep 05 '22

And before that, Zoro effortlessly bodied Arlong's entire gang except for his top few officers.

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u/gablielthedog Sep 05 '22

This is probably the most educated comment I’ve gotten on any post.

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u/Unluckysol23 Sep 05 '22

Oh thanks

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u/Yolodeller Sep 05 '22

I think we should take in the fact that Zoro was quite literally on the brink of death, a normal human being wouldn't be able to stand in such condition. This further proves how strong Zoro is and how Arlong would be absolute 0 match for him if he was at his 100%

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u/MarcoPolpo Sep 05 '22

Oda literally handicapped Zoro for most of the East Blue saga or he would have been too OP

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u/Delver_Razade Sep 05 '22

Arlong felt it was the case. He said that if he didn't kill Zoro there and then, he'd be a serious threat. Seems to me Arlong acknowledged that Zoro could take him down.

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u/ChillOtters Cipher Pol Sep 05 '22 edited Sep 05 '22

He knew who zoro was due to his reputation as a pirate hunter. That mixed with him even walking around with that injury was terrifying to arlong because those injuries proved his terrifying reputation to be true.

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u/Ansoni Sep 05 '22

I don't think he was actually that hard of a fight for Luffy. One of his toughest in East Blue, but once serious he won fairly easily. A lot of the East Blue bosses were bigger inconveniences than they were threats.

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u/mugguffen Sep 05 '22

Fishmen are a minority

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u/Ok_Heat_9925 Pirate Sep 05 '22

Underrated comment

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u/DyslexicBrad Sep 05 '22

This is the real reason zoro can't be the protagonist, in a fight against the celestial dragons, his racism would drive him to kill himself.

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u/Shenjarr Sep 05 '22

There’s also one part where (I don’t know if anyone mentioned it here) Zoro solo’d Arlong’s crew while still badly injured

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u/LedgeEndDairy Sep 05 '22

For a non-copium answer:

Because Luffy no-diffed Arlong. He was kind of messing around until he saw Nami's room and got pissed. At no point was Luffy not in control of this fight, and he ended it with a single powerful blow.

Meaning if Luffy no-diffed, Zoro should have won pretty cleanly at a low or mid diff. Since that's more or less how the progression of Luffy compared to Zoro and Sanji goes.

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

Yes

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u/nobarachinsama Cipher Pol Sep 05 '22

obviously. arlong literally said he can't afford to let him live. a cocky villain would never think of such a thing unless they're truly scared.

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u/sidsod Sep 05 '22

my second favourite moment from the arc. Along after looking at the injuries: "I have to kill this man now"

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u/Sovereigntyranny Lurker Sep 05 '22

Arlong: “I need to kill him before it comes around and bites me in the ass.”

Kaido: “Eh, I’ll let him live, not like anything will go wrong.”

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u/Godskook Sep 06 '22

Arlong: "I know 200+ people who can kick my ass. This guy is not living long enough to enter that list."
Kaido: "I know 0 people who can kick my ass. What's this guy going to do?"

There's a distinct difference in the level of survival instincts those two are dealing with relative to each other.

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u/Sovereigntyranny Lurker Sep 06 '22

Kaido: “Hmm, I’ve tried killing Straw Hat four times already, maybe he’s dead after the fourth loss. Should I cut his head off just to make sure he’s done for good this time? ...Nah, forget it, not like he’s gonna unlock an awakening that threatens me or anything. Well, I’m gonna go say ‘hi’ to all the weirdos down on the live floor now. See ya, Straw Hat!”

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u/Standard_Series3892 Sep 06 '22

I mean, Kaido was hoping that someone would come around and surpass him.

Luffy surviving and coming back stronger is things going right, not wrong.

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u/Repulsive-Feature-33 Sep 05 '22

IMO Luffy and Zoro were pretty much equal in strength until 2nd gear

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u/Tadiken Sep 05 '22

Frankly I think the first person Luffy could beat that Zoro couldn't was Crocodile.

Both Alabasta and Skypeia had Logias that Zoro just wouldn't have been able to find the answer for, being not the protag.

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u/Steve-Fiction Sep 05 '22

I think the first one is Buggy.

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u/fafalij Thriller Bark Victim's Association Sep 05 '22

Give this man a medal 🏅🏅

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u/Frigoris13 Sep 05 '22

How you gonna slice the chop-chop man?

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u/XenaRen Sep 05 '22

I know this is kind of a meme but Zoro realistically could've just punched Buggy.

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u/Standard_Series3892 Sep 06 '22

Zoro doesn't work like a normal person, he's just overall weaker the less swords he has, realistically he should be as strong (or more) with one blade than with three, but he isn't.

I don't think he would've win against Buggy with his bare hands.

That said, he would more likely still use his swords but using the reverse or the flat side and wack the shit out Buggy. Swords have blunt parts.

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u/Tadiken Sep 05 '22

Lmaooo good point

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u/LilQuasar Sep 05 '22

i agree. Luffy could beat Crocodile by being creative + plot armour, something Zoro doesnt have as much. with Enel the difference is obvious

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u/MitchMyester23 Pirate Sep 05 '22

To be fair with Enel, Luffy got incredibly lucky in that fight. First, he’s made a rubber, the only natural counter to Enel’s DF in the story so far. Second, Enel had never once heard of rubber before, so couldn’t have ever prepared himself for a fight where his main source of damage does nothing. And finally, Luffy beat Enel with a giant gold ball weighing several tons (tired of the argument that Enel can’t take ridiculous amounts of damage, that hit would’ve wounded anyone who wasn’t a logia or an Emperor, and my man still got up and just flew away cuz the fight wasn’t worth it).

Anyway, so no I don’t think Luffy beating Enel really factors into any strength or skill comparison between him and Zoro. If Zoro was made of rubber the fight may have gone much the same way.

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u/AceBricka Sep 05 '22

Shit luffy couldn’t beat crocodile without help

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u/CatSpydar Sep 05 '22

without help

Ya he had to bleed his own blood to win.

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u/Frigoris13 Sep 05 '22

No one makes me bleed my own blood

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

Luffy beat Crocodile by splashing water/blood on him. I'm pretty sure Zoro could do that. Crocodile's physicals were pathetic compared to the other warlords. He was entirely reliant on his fruit, which made sense at the time since haki wasn't a thing.

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u/Boat_XD Sep 05 '22

Zoro unconsciously used haki to take down mr 1 so if he could pull that off again he probably could

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u/Dsb0208 Sep 05 '22

I agree for the most part, but there’s undoubtedly an advantage in Luffy’s favor.

Assuming Zoro wasn’t loyal to Luffy, I do think Luffy would win in a fight because he’s more versatile. He has more range, better speed, and is just more creative. I think early on Luffy would just be difficult to fight. If Zoro could fight him, it’d be way closer, but I think Zoro would have a hard time landing hits on Luffy when he’s bouncing all around the battle field

And I also think as each arc happens, the gap between the two gets ever bigger, up until Gear 2 and 3 at which point Luffy gets a big leap ahead. I think Zoro’s Asura could maybe compete with gear 2, but that’s a single attack, compared to a transformation, so still Luffy clearly wins

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u/StrangestManOnEarth Sep 05 '22

Blades are Luffy’s weakness, I’d say in a 1v1 it’s a closer fight than it would be if Zoro was a blunt damage fighter.

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u/TheDo0ddoesnotabide Void Month Survivor Sep 05 '22 Helpful

Blades are kinda everyone’s weakness, Luffy doesn’t take more damage from them then anyone else.

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u/weeaboojones76 Sep 05 '22

Not for buggy. He’s op.

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u/miskathonic Sep 05 '22

No point in bringing up a guy with no weaknesses

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u/MightyLordZk Sep 05 '22

LOL this made me laugh so hard

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u/Goatbeerdog Sep 05 '22

He stretches his body. Which makes him easier target

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u/Bejitto-da Pirate Sep 05 '22

Luffy fights by stretching tho

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u/StrangestManOnEarth Sep 05 '22

I’m not saying he does, I’m saying that’s the clear flaw in his combat ability. If you have two versions of Zoro at the same power level, but one uses swords and the other uses a club, then bladed Zoro does better because Luffy can’t take as many sword slashes as he can blunt hits.

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u/Zappahcracker Sep 05 '22

I would bet most characters can take waaaay more blunt hits than sword slashes. But the WG has probably outlawed blunt hits.

Except for Kizaru, of course.

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u/Throwaway02062004 Sep 05 '22

Can we please stop this nonsense of things not being someone’s weakness. Swords are absolutely his weakness as magic is Superman’s. Just because it’s not super effective doesn’t mean it’s not a weakness. If you’re immune to everything but a bullet to the head will kill you, that is your weakness. It doesn’t matter if almost everyone would also die from it.

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u/Dsb0208 Sep 05 '22

Luffy’s weakness is blades, but I have a hard time imagining Zoro could get many good hits in to begin with

I can easily see Luffy’s pistols being too fast for Zoro to get consistent hits on

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u/gablielthedog Sep 05 '22

Thats what i feel like too. although i think you can make the case that zoro caught up with luffy post time skip and now that luffy has advanced conquerors there’s another gap IMO

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u/Repulsive-Feature-33 Sep 05 '22

Zoro was definitely close pre time skip, but post time skip he is in competition with Sanji not Luffy. I think they made it pretty clear that post time skip Luffy is far superior to everyone else in the crew.

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u/MaoXiWinnie Sep 05 '22

The moment he dropped gear 4, no one touching luffy

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

[removed] — view removed comment

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

I think Ennis Lobby where gap started to become large between the two, Zoro himself Acknowledged Rob Lucci to be someone who may just able to take down every one of them and Luffy was their only bet

And from their gap only started to grow

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u/unhealthyseal Sep 05 '22

Zoro was even with Luffy until Luffy pulled out second+third gear.

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u/LilQuasar Sep 05 '22

the fact that Zoro was fighting with Luffy against Kaido and Big Mom shows they were pretty close. gear 5 puts Luffy on a different level though

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u/TitledSquire Explorer Sep 05 '22

Post TS Luffy is on another level

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u/TheRadTurtle_1011 Sep 05 '22

Nah if anything post timeskip zoro was closer to sanji than luffy

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u/King3D Sep 05 '22

Nah Zoro was definitely not as strong as Luffy post-timeskip. In Fishman Island when Luffy knocked out 50k people with Conqueror's Haki, Zoro said something like "If he couldn't do that, I'd make him step down as captain." which proves that Zoro acknowledges Luffy as stronger than him and that if Luffy at any point in the story proved to be weaker than Zoro, he wouldn't follow him as a subordinate. People seem to forget this small line that reveals a lot about Zoro's values which is understandable since you could argue that it was just a throwaway line to show how much Zoro expects of Luffy.

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u/NoBreadforOldMen Sep 05 '22

Zoro also has advanced conqueror as well

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u/DMking Sep 05 '22

Luffy didn't have a real fight until Katakuri. So unless Zoro was YC1 material back then no he was still weaker

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

You could argue Zoro didn't have a real fight until King.

On the other hand, Doffy and Cracker both put up a fight against Luffy.

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u/SnooAdvice1632 Void Month Survivor Sep 05 '22

Luffy would've died against doffy if the crowd didn't protect him

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u/henryGeraldTheFifth Sep 05 '22

Have veen curious for east blue was zoro injured so he could be weaker than luffy. As he had a lot more fighing experience at start of story than luffy. And pretty sure at whisky peak he held back cause luffy was being fooled

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u/randomperson4464 Void Month Survivor Sep 05 '22

Yea if you really analyze East Blue a lot of the fights were situations where the Straw Hats were at a situational disadvantage in some way.

In the Morgan arc it was just Luffy and Zoro and Zoro was weakened due to having starved for days. Even then, neither struggled at all in that arc.

In the Buggy arc Zoro met the one guy who could counter his fighting style, and was stabbed and injured while fighting his number 2 which limited him from properly fighting him. The only other Straw Hat then was Nami and she wasn't a fighter at that time.

I don't really remember what disadvantages were there in Syrup Village (least favorite arc of mine). I think one of them was Luffy going to the wrong side of the island, which prevented him from being there when Kuro and the pirates first landed, but I'm not too sure.

In Baratie only Luffy and Sanji were fighting Krieg since Nami dipped and Zoro got injured by Mihawk, and in addition to that Luffy had to fight Krieg in an environment where he could fall into the water at any moment, which he had to take into account while fighting.

Finally in the Arlong arc, Luffy is out of commission due to stupidity for the first half, Zoro is still heavily injured from Mihawk, and Sanji is more preoccupied with helping Luffy than stopping Kuroobi so he takes unnecessary amounts of damage from Kuroobi before ending him easily. This makes it so that Zoro and Sanji are unable to fight Arlong when in reality they could've beaten him themselves if they were fresh, leaving it up to Luffy to finish off Arlong, which wasn't that hard for him anyway.

This continues into the Grand Line as well with Little Garden, where Sanji is unaware of the Mr. 3 situation and Zoro is stuck in the wax candle, only allowing Luffy to deal with the situation. Oda did a great job creating fights where the protagonists were limited by their environment and situation rather than their strength, and it makes those early fights very interesting because they have to think about those obstacles instead of just focusing on becoming stronger and landing harder blows.

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u/wheretohides Pirate Sep 05 '22

In Syrup Village Zoro had to make his way past an oil slick.

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u/cheesystuff Sep 05 '22

I shouldn't be in this sub for fear of spoilers, but 100%. Zoro was always missing, injured, or doing something else just to hide his strength. I think it's water 7 when we see Zoro actually fight, and he was still gimped for a good chunk of it.

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u/rikkmode Sep 05 '22

Usopp sword

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u/cheesystuff Sep 05 '22

Usopp sword was top content

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

Yeah until the gears Luffy and Zoro were neck in neck. It’s not till the gears that Luffy started widening the gap between the two. It also happens to be when Luffy started to come into his own as a captain, so the decision to widen the gap at that point by Oda was likely intentional.

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u/Dry_Entertainment373 Sep 05 '22

I mean I don't think it was ever confirmed oda widen the gap between the two.I believe that something the fans made up to match their own narrative.

I mean yes Luffy had the gears, but you could argue, Zoro had Asura which is showcased as a powerful mysterious ability Zoro possesses.

I believe it's always been portrayed that Zoro is always close behind his captain as they progress, as they both share goals that involve rising to the top. I believe their fight in whiskey was a testament to how close in the strength they really are. It always been implied that Zoro could be leader of his own crew( the baroque incident and people mistaking him as captain) but chooses not to.

On the roof top fight in Wano, Zoro attacks were shown to be as much as a threat to Kaido as Luffys gear 4th attacks, in which Big Mum had to warn Kaido to dodge Zoro attack, which he did, and then eventually tapped into advance conquerors before or at the same time Luffy tapped into it, that can be used as an example that Zoro is never far behind Luffy in strength.

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u/Crafty_Cherry_9920 Sep 05 '22

Thinking that current Zoro is almost on par with current Luffy is what I would describe as "made up by fans to match their own narrative", not the other way around lmao

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u/YogurtclosetLeast761 Sep 05 '22

I'd say the gap was pretty sizeable during enies lobby. Lucci was like twice a strong as kaku, wasn't he?

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u/Aggravating-Ad-48431 Sep 05 '22

To be fair Zoro vs Kaku wasn't nearly as high diff as Luffy vs Lucci. He kinda struggled with Kaku, sure... until he got pissed and used Asura and then just oneshot Kaku (to be fair, that's just the nature of sword fights).

I don't think Zoro could have beaten Lucci but he was definitely not just "Kaku level" either.

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u/aphantombeing Sep 05 '22

And neither was Sanji vs Jyabura as high diff as Luffy's. And even before Sanji's new move, no one was at disadvantage. And Sanji basically oneshot him with 1 move.

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u/Yergason Sep 05 '22

I could understand pre-timeskip but acting like current Zoro is not far behind Yonko-Luffy? That's mad copium. Just because they didn't want to take unnecessary damage from Zoro's attacks doesn't mean he's capable of beating either of them. They were just acting like fighters with brains.

Luffy is on the way to mastering adv. CoC coated attacks while Zoro has only used it subconsciously. Even just that advantage with G4 Luffy will kick Zoro's ass. It's an immediate game over if Luffy uses G5.

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u/wead4 Sep 05 '22

Yes and arlong knew it

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u/DreamDemonVideos Sep 05 '22

Zoro is pretty strong at this point, obviously he becomes an absolute beast later, but Arlong isn't all he's barked up to be as we all know. He just bullied a physically weaker race, and one without fighters.

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u/X_Seed21 Sep 05 '22

Yeah Don Krieg and even Kuro was a bigger threat than him

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u/chainer1216 Sep 05 '22

The next scene is literally Arlong freaking out and saying he needs to kill Zoro now because he can't be allowed to heal back to full strength.

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u/SolidFoxguy Sep 05 '22

Zoro getting injured in the previous arc so he can't beat the big bad in the next is a running theme in the series.

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u/RivalSnooze Sep 05 '22

Zoro had to spend the majority of pre time skip nerfed through various story machinations

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u/gablielthedog Sep 05 '22

Thats very true now that I think about it

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u/_Rioben_ Sep 05 '22

By nerfed you mean bodied by stronger characters like mihawk and buggy-sama?

If so then yes.

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u/Unyik Sep 05 '22

Yes, imo Zoro and Luffy kinda equal in the earlier arc, besides Zoro fighting style match Arlong better than Luffy

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u/Adem92foster Sep 05 '22

Definitely. Honestly same for Sanji most likely, Arlong wasn't that big of a threat.

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u/Eldr1tchB1rd Pirate Sep 05 '22

Yup. In fact Zoro could probably beat many of the enemies luffy fights during the series. That's why he gets injured in many of the arcs so there is a reason he fights the second strongest. Especially early in the series where him and luffy were closer in power compared to now.

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u/krauzer123 Sep 05 '22

I think Zoro and luffy were equally strong pre time skip but Zoro would have had difficulty fighting few adversaries luffy fought pre time skip, like crocodile and Enel, Zoro had no haki at that time so cutting crocodile or Enel would have been an impossible task, but in case of Arlong i think Zoro would have managed to defeat him.

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u/TheLittleGoodWolf Sep 05 '22

When you go back in the story and look it's actually quite clear that as soon as Luffy goes serious he absolutely decks the villains. If you look at the Arlong fight, it is mostly just Luffy goofing off and testing things out until they get to Namis room and he snaps. At that point he breaks Arlongs sword, then his nose, and then in one move destroys both Arlong and the whole building.

It's easy to think of them as weak back in east blue given what we see now, and it's absolutely true, Zoro may not be equal to Mihawk this moment but you could actually make a decent argument that he is, and if not he's at least up there. They were all pretty damn strong even back in East Blue, the only thing is matchups and them not giving their 100% all, or Zoro being an inch from death. All this kept them back.

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u/anti_dan Sep 05 '22

Luffy and Zoro were basically lurking beasts in East Blue, which is obvious when they get to the Grand Line, which eats pirates for breakfast, and they basically eat the first island for breakfast.

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u/Shanal183 The Revolutionary Army Sep 05 '22

Whether fans like it or not, Zoro and Luffy were definitely equal back in early One Piece. Whiskey Peak is evidence of that. The gap started existing in Enies Lobby onward.

Zoro would beat him, yes.

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u/olivervaa Sep 05 '22

Why is this even a question lmao? Of course he would

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u/FewAstronaut565 Sep 05 '22

He would’ve slaughtered him

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u/ExpensiveAd7778 Lurker Sep 05 '22

Yes, yes 100x yes. Zoro beat arlongs second when on the brink of death. When seeing his wound this SCARED arlong so bad he had no choice but to kill zoro. He knew that if he let zoro live he had no chance of surviving if he came back to hunt him another day. Zoro without that gruesome mihawk injury would have ran laps around the arlong pirates. Luffy picked him as his right hand for a reason.

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u/vinsmokewhoswho Pirate Sep 05 '22

Probably. As others have said, Luffy and Zoro were a lot closer in strength before the gears (especially post Timeskip)

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u/Basic-Gift-1393 Sep 05 '22

Zoro is one of those mfs in anime who’s close to the mc in terms of strength. Although, that’s very unlikely right now after recent events in Wano.

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u/OutsideOrder7538 Sep 05 '22

Yes he could have

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u/aylaktanri Void Month Survivor Sep 05 '22

Of course

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u/DaybreakPaladin Sep 05 '22

The straw hats spend a lot of time taking turns being nerfed each arc so that they don’t defeat their villains instantly for narrative purposes. It’s kind of annoying honestly lol

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u/Bimimans Explorer Sep 05 '22

"Did you fall down somewhere" is incredibly savage if you take Zoro's history in account.

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u/Cap_D_Evac Sep 05 '22

By the time everybody else got to arlong park zoro had already taken out all the Fishmen who were already there and was just chilling in arlongs chair, so yes

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u/Isaiahwk98 Sep 05 '22

Absolutely.

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u/Lazy-Accountant-6911 Sep 05 '22

yes I think zoro was always similar to luffy in strength until luffy started using his gears and leveling up his devil fruit which is an extra advantage that zoro doesnt have. Thats why he got injured alot before big fights.

I still believe that if luffy didnt have his devil to this day the gap between zoro and luffy would be really close however his devil fruit gives him such a boost in power that its impossible for zoros growth in power to keep up with luffys

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u/DialZforZebra Sep 05 '22

Yeah I think Zoro could've taken him as well, had he not been half dead and 2 swords down.

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u/burningbarn8 Sep 05 '22

Absolutely.

Zoro and Luffy are evenly matched at Whiskey Peak with Zoro giving Luffy a much better fight than Arlong.

With 3 swords and no injuries Zoro beats Arlong as easily as Luffy did, and without all the shenanigans.

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u/LilQuasar Sep 05 '22

imo in many arcs its suggested(or straight up shown) that Zoro can beat the main villains. like hes been heavily injured and handicapped many times (and they react to it) and doesnt beat them so Luffy does + he fights enemies with swords and similar weapons

he beat Hody underwater ffs, he only lost because he ran out of air. after the time skip Wano was the first arc where he had to fight seriously as well, all the other times he didnt need to use all his strength

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u/MHG_Brixby Sep 05 '22

I would argue that a lot of the pre ts arcs he is about an arc behind. Like if you negate the logia defense of crocodile i think skypeia zoro could win. Same with lobby zoro vs enel, thriller vs lucci, sabaody vs moria. Even getting into post ts, wano zoro should be able to take doffy & katakuri.

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u/DrPrototypex Sep 05 '22

Zorro could have defeated every opponent Luffy defeated up until CPO Lucci and I'd say Crocodile because zoro couldn't cut logia users.

Although he did I personally think end up using a form of haki to cut Mr 1. So maybe if he was on the brink Vs crocodile he might have had a chance but that's very speculative.

Zoro his movements are ground limited Luffy has a different fighting style so he can come from any angle literally. Zoro you know he's always coming head on.

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u/sh4gamer Sep 05 '22

Yeah easily

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u/ElYisusKing Sep 05 '22

it's funny because Don Krieg was harder to beat than Arlong

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u/gablielthedog Sep 05 '22

I gotta rewatch and confirm that one. it just doesn’t sound right

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u/StrictlyFT Sep 05 '22

If you're basing it off damage done Krieg definitely hurt Luffy more.

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u/[deleted] Sep 05 '22

He’s not lying

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u/SnooGrapes1352 Sep 05 '22

Zoro or Sanji could’ve beat him. Arlong really wasn’t that Strong Luffy is just stupid.

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u/ChillOtters Cipher Pol Sep 05 '22

Yes arlong was not actually that strong. Zoro and sanji could have taken him if they were not already heavily worn down previously. Compared to the monster trio the fishmen pirates were jokes if not for luffy’s stupidity and zoro already being injured from mihawk. They would have won with little trouble.

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u/echonian Sep 05 '22

Why do you say Arlong was not actually that strong?

Didn't he basically nearly kill multiple members of the crew?

It's true that Luffy was stronger than him, but it wasn't some enormous gap. Arlong had superhuman strength and speed, and Zoro wasn't really used to fighting that class of opponents, so I think Zoro would have struggled even at his peak. Sanji I don't think would have done very well because he didn't have a special move capable of really dealing any major damage, I think.

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u/darthhue Sep 05 '22

Luffy could defeat arlong much easier if he wasn't a moron. And zoro wasn't a moron, not in the same way of Luffy anw

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u/DepressedNoble Sep 05 '22

Luffy didn't break a sweat to break and beat arlong...if we are to subtract the dailogue time.. The dragging phase time where luffy was thrown into the sea... This fight would have only lasted 3 minutes at top.. So yah.. I believe zoro would have defeated arlong since arlong wasn't that strong

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u/Ok-Tap4944 Sep 05 '22

Yes because him and Luffy are equals at this stage in the story

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u/roldictator Sep 05 '22

most likely yes

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u/RomanceDawnOP Sep 05 '22 edited Sep 06 '22

yes, Arlong wasn't as strong as most ppl wanna remember, after Luffy sees Nami's room he basically just one shots him, most of the fight beforehand was Luffy goofing around like an idiot

Luffy and Zoro in EB weren't just Arlong strong, their first real challenges are Croc and Mr1 respectively

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u/Aggravating-Ad-48431 Sep 05 '22

I always had the impression that he was at least Luffy's equal in the East Blue arc. A power gap only happened with Gear 2nd.

If you notice he was always nerfed or out of commission for some reason in pretty much every East Blue arc. Narratively there's no reason to do that unless he was quite literally "too strong". But even if he wasn't Luffy's equaly, Luffy vs Arlong wasn't really all that extremeDiff, eventually Luffy just got pissed and kind of one-shot Arlong. So even if Zoro was slightly weaker I'd still think he'd win.

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u/Grammulka Sep 05 '22 edited Sep 05 '22

My assumption is that Zoro that started a fight with Mr 1 is almost the same as if he was fully healed during Arlong Park, so he wins. I can easily see Arlong breaking Zoro's "normal" (pre-Mihawk) katanas, and then Zoro managing to pull a Shishi Sonson for the win. Arlong's teeth are strong, but I doubt he can break a graded sword

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u/Squaleon Sep 05 '22

Considering how underwhelming the Arlong pirates were in retrospect, i feel even Usopp could take them down.

Luffy was nerfed by being trapped underwater. Zoro was heavily injured. And Sanji was injured underwater saving Luffy.

Oda gave all his main fighters a disadvantage to make them a threat to them. And even then zoro and sanji still bodied their respective opponents.

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u/New_Physics_5095 Sep 05 '22

Usopp barely took out the weakest commander and even that required underhand fighting, the Arlong pirates were very weak but Usopp taking them down is straight cap. I don't think Usopp hammer would even scratch Arlong and his "special attacks" at the time would only piss him off.

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