Ok, how many here are Slutskaya fans?
I've watched Irina since she came on the figure skating scene. I have nothing against her, (she has persevered against great odds) but I just am not a fan of her skating. She does jump well, but her routines seem to be so repeatitive and moving one element to the next. She scores so high under the COP, but I just can't relate to her skating. (I wonder how she would fare against Asada?) Anyway, just wondering what you guys think of Irina. This post is not meant to slam or degrade her. She is a well deserving world champion and a fabulous athelete. I just don't make a connection with her skating. How do you feel? Please discuss!
Matt Savoie~Soul Skater
I'm a fan. She's a very strong and driven athlete. I think she's gotten better since she was diagnosed with an illness. I admire her a lot.
I am obviously not a fan of hers, but I do have to say I like the way she's actually stepping things up in this post-Kwan era and setting the standard. Caution is no longer a word in her vocabulary- at least until the Olympics, that is and I like that from a skater.
However, there have been many instances where I just could not stand her. I won't go into detail, but in short, I'm not a big fan of her skating nor her person. I do think she is very appealing to a lot of people, though- she "plays the energetic person" on camera.
Her style of skating isn't my cup of tea.
Well, they did skate against each other in Cup of China. Irina got the gold with 196.12 points and Mao got silver with 176.60.
Originally Posted by Arianne
A. Y. & E. P.: Tzars Of The Ice, Lords Of The Rink
I am a fan of Ira!!! I look forward to celebrating wherever she places in the Olympics.
They will meet again in the GP Final. It will be called
Originally Posted by Mathman
[CENTER]THE CHALLENGE OF THE CENTURY[/CENTER]
Honestly? While I sympathize because of the inflammatory blood disease (I tend to feel for people with chronic, hard-to-treat illnesses because I have one) and I rather like that she's not a twig, her skating sometimes leaves me...eh. Like the 'card-dealing' 'artistic' element of last year's FP. It felt very hokey. The program felt unusually contrived to me. I haven't seen her skate this year, but I'm not expecting much change in my liking her. Ugly catch-foot positions aside, I recognize she's a talented skater, she just does nothing for me. I'd rather watch Michelle, Alisa, Shizuka, or, heaven help me, Mao, whom I found rather cute (or maybe I just like that she ACTUALLY LANDED A NEAT AND CLEAN 3AXEL UNLIKE SOME OTHER KID SKATERS I COULD NAME. Okay, so I can't stand Kimmie. Sue me. I feel about her the way my friend feels about Sasha.)
Nothing against Irina. She's just not my cup of tea. But then Ladies' is my least-favorite discipline anyway. (It used to be dance, men's, pairs, and ladies', but those middle two may flip-flop if I have to watch another men's competition like the last two.)
I love Irina. I've been a fan since, I think, 1997? She's so sweet and so bubbly, and i love her power and her attack.
Originally Posted by Joesitz
Any bets? Mao for gold!
Of course, Czisny might be able to power herself to a bronze. That would be impressive. But who knows?
I respect her as a great athlete, and a lot of talent and strength (both emotional and physical). She has a great "story" behind her, and seems to have a very strong, persevering character. I like HER. Her skating? No. Although I do enjoy her SP this year, as I think it is one of the best examples of a program to suit the strengths of the skater I've seen in quite some time. But her LP makes me :sheesh:
I will say she has great jumps and nice spins although i'm starting to get sick of only seeing the same spin over and over again.
The thing i hate about her skating is how rough around the edges she is. Though a deserving world champion, i find her body positions to be awkward thus hurting her presentation skills greatly which is why i can't believe she's being rewarded so many points in the COP system in the presentation mark since i don't find it to be all that good.
I honestly didn't care for her at all before 2000. She was an efficient technician, but her presentation/emoting skills left much to be desired, IMO. This changed a bit after her 1st comeback during the 99-00 season. I became a minor Slutskaya fan thanks to her SPs from 2000-2002. They were (for the most part) complete, enjoyable programs/performances to me. She was making strides in the presentation department, and I felt she made some wise musical/costume selections. For some reason, I never cared as much for her LPs from this same period (aside from her 2001 GWG's performance of "Tosca").
NOW....hmmmm. I am an Irina fan, but it is more for her consistency/longevity/athleticism than anything else. Her LP from 05 Worlds was great in my eyes because she skated with so much visible emotion and joy.....and she actually landed a clean 3lz/3l (the one from 00 GPF was commendable and I guess "clean", but it wasn't pretty)! But, I still don't see that she has progressed tremendously or matured artistically in any great sense since 2000. At any rate, I wish her the best. She seems like a good person, and she has been skating her pants off so far this season.
There are sevral skaters that I prefer over Slutskaya, but I enjoy Irina's skating tremendously; and I'll be happy for her when she wins the Gold medal.
My mom loves Slutskaya, although I think it has very little to do with her skating, and more with her interviews/personality.
Gadfly and Bon Vivant
I think the world of Slute as a skater and a person (as far as that can be judged from tv ... ) but there are certain skating ... hmmm .... habits? of hers that I really don't like (nb. my criticisms are addressed to her as one of the two or three best skater's of the last fifteen years and not be confused with evaluations of less accomplished skaters).
- she can skate really fast but her basic stroking seems labored
- her positions are often just not that good
- her jumps are high but telegraphed and usually not so pretty (poor run out in the best of times and she often comes to a complete halt)
- she tends to travel a lot in spins
- I really dislike the Slutskaya spin (I'm not even going to call it a B---man anymore, grrrr)
- her programs tend to be trick to trick to trick with the occasional bit of pantomime thrown in (remember her head clutching as Tosca?)
- her competitive skating is hit and miss in terms of musicality
A lot of this is frustrating since I think she's capable of a lot more than she does, she's can do beautiful positions (there was a great picture here the other day going into a catch-blade position that had a wonderful lyrical quality) and I think she can be a very musical skater, but musicality is the first thing to go when she's under pressure.
This partly may be a European thing as she's certainly not the first high profile European lady with these problems. In their eligible days, I found most of Witt's spin positions to be frankly ugly and thought Baiul looked sloppy and was skating programs that hadn't been finished (along with her tendency to two-foot landings).
The NAmericans and Japanese now women seem to put more thought into dotting their i's and crossing their t's (I thought even Ito's eligible programs were a lot more well thought out and she was a lot more musical than she ever got credit for). Some of what I've read makes me believe that European judges actually dislike polished, controlled grace (seeing it as calculated and insincere).
Slutskaya is what I like to call a short program skater in that her LP's only very rarely have the spark that her SP's often have. Maybe the shorter time frame helps?
As a competitor, she has a shaky mental game and skates her best LP's when she's in a secure position or just doesn't care. Compare her tenative awkard SLC program (when she would have had to beat both Hughes and Kwan to win) with her far superior performance in Nagano that same year when she had a big lead going into the LP (no Hughes, and Kwan was far behind after a bad SP).
Unofrtunately, Slute and COP have produced a bizarre, deadly alchemy where my least favorite aspects of her skating are being handsomely rewarded and she has no motivation whatsoever to tamper with a winning formula. This isn't criticism, in her place I'd be doing the same thing, but frustration about what COP rewards and punishes.
For all that she remains a great skater and champion and is easily one of the most charismatic skaters of the last ten years. One of my favorite competitions of hers (in a way) was her 2003 European's. She looked like she'd rather be anywhere but a skating rink going into the SP and got though half the elements on personality rather than any rational standard of skating. She fell in the LP and you could almost hear her thinking, "hell with this planned program" and looked like she improvised the rest and it looked better than the planned part and she won the damned thing.