The American Mathematical Society announced this week that a so-called “squared circle,” a longtime nickname for a pro wrestling ring, is a geometric impossibility.
“A square is a rectangular quadrilateral with four equal sides and four equal angles,” explains the report published in the prominent journal The American Mathematical Monthly.
“A circle is a closed shape of Euclidean geometry consisting of points on a plane that are a given distance from the center,” the paper continues.
“By its very definition, a circle cannot be squared; therefore, the nickname ‘squared circle,’ which is commonly used to describe a wrestling ring, is an oxymoron and should be removed from vernacular.”
Vince McMahon, chairman of sports entertainment conglomerate WWE, said he was surprised by the revelation, and will henceforth ban the term from WWE programming.
“I guess I never really thought about what the term ‘squared circle’ really meant,” McMahon told reporters. “I suppose it is kind of weird.”
The new mathematical paper does point out, however, that the six-sided ring formerly used by TNA is closer to a circle than the standard four-sided ring. The paper concludes with a recommendation that, if wrestling organizations wish to continue using the term “squared circle,” they begin using “highly polygonal” rings.
“Polygons of increased sidedness will allow rings of greater circularity, though increased circularity is inversely correlated to squaredness, reinforcing the impossibility a truly squared circle.”