Sasha: coronation or upset in St. Louis?
Sasha has been bridesmaid to Michelle Kwan 4 times at the U.S. Nationals (2000, 2002, 2004-05). But now Michelle has withdrawn. Some questions:
*On a scale of 0 (absolutely no chance) to 10 (cosmic certainty) what are Sasha's chances of winning U.S. Nationals?
*What will it take for someone to upset Sasha? Who is most likely to do this?
*Will Sasha be more likely to skate better, worse or the same with Michelle not there? Will Michelle's pullout put more or less pressure on her?
Also, I don't think the 2006 U.S. ladies champ will have an asterisk next to their name because Kwan withdrew. Nancy Kerrigan in 1993 and Nicole Bobek in 1995 won their U.S. titles with less than spectacular performances and/or a weak field and I've never heard anyone call their titles illegitimate. When Maria Butyrskaya won Worlds in 1999, she was remembered as the oldest woman ever to win a world championship. No one says her victory was hollow because Michelle was suffering from a fever at that Worlds.
It will be a coronation for Sasha. I don't see anyone other than Kwan beating her and Kwan will not be there. Even if she has a subpar performance, I don't see the USFSA sending to Turin their best hope for an OGM with a loss.
I don't see Maria's world title in 1999 as the result of Michelle being sick. Maria skated well enough to win. If Michelle was not sick, that's no gurantee that she would not have made a mistake in the SP. It was this mistake that eventually cost her the title.
and... World Peace!
Sasha would have to have a meltdown to totally have no chance....
Then again her biggest competition has always been herself so we'll see. GO SASHA!
Sasha's chances of winning the US title in 2006 on a scale of 0-10 is
Sasha's chances of winning the title? On a scale of 0-10, it's a 10! Comparing her to the ladies below her, she's in a class by herself.
Will she skate better of worse? I think better. The pressure will be off, and I think she'll want to show the USFSA that she deserves the title. However, even if she doesn't skate perfectly, she'll be held up thru the PC scores.
Now the real question is....who will come in second? That's a different thread, but will it be Kimmie or Alissa?
A 10!!!! Sasha now has it all together. She always had the talent but now she's stronger, more focused, and has the choreogrpahy. The real question marks are the next two medals, with Kimmie and Alysa and Emily and BeBe all battling it out for those pieces of medal. This is Sasha's year.
Lovin' the Kween ... Now and Forever
I actually think Sasha might have more pressure without Michelle being there ... because nothing less than gold now, will be acceptable IMO. I expect she will win ... I would put her chances at about 9.
By Default probably a win. No way will the USFA let another skater win this one however it will always be a lingering by Default. I just hope Sasha can put her Foot in Mouth disease aside for once and not come off as cocky and arrogant as she does so many times. She has improved but needs more tact. I dont think she has to worry the gift will be there. An upset would be interesting though.
I'd say an 8
Originally Posted by Ogre Mage
It would take someone skating 100% clean and really bringing it artistically and Sasha to fall or make a few minor mistakes.
I think she is likely to skate the same michelle or no michelle. I don't think it'll put more pressure on her,because if Kwan gets the bye,it doesn't matter how well she skates,or anyone skates for that matter,only 2 of the 3 spots will be open for grabs. there is 1 person who will medal at Nationals who will be excluded from going to the Olys because of this. So the spot that they'll be skating their butts of for after Sasha most likely wins the Gold will be that Silver medal.No one will want the Bronze,cause it means a ticket to the sidelines....*so not fair*
I give it an 8.
Alissa could beat her handily if she performs as at SkAm or SkCan...not the G-P Finals meltdown. If the judges judge the TES fairly, Alissa has the deeper edges on spirals, the faster spins, exact musicality, more interesting transitional moves, etc., to beat Sasha. Alissa would have to be 100% perfect in her jumps. It could happen. The short programs will tell a lot....Sasha usually wins that...if Alissa is a close 2nd on points, for the SP, Alissa definitely stands a chance to pull up in the LP.
Less Pressure on Sasha? It could help & it could hurt, as some competitors have their guard 'down' when they think that a title is 'in the bag.' Sasha will have to concentrate as hard as she would were Michele there.
On one hand, I'd say a 10... The stars are aligned for Sasha at this moment in time.
On the other hand... I agree with the poster who pointed out that no one will want to skate for the bronze and we have the opportunity to see somebody pull a Sarah and have the proverbial "skate of a lifetime" with Sasha feeling for the first time ever the pressure of being chased vs. chasing. In an Olympic year that might prove to be a bit much between the media, speculation, constant questioning of "could you win with Kwan here?" type of thing that goes on at Nationals. She might also put additional pressure on herself to prove that she deserves her first major title...
So, I'd give her a 7 ~ even though I'm certain she will win, I'm looking forward to seeing the how she wins part...
I think what posters giving out the 10 mean is that it's Sasha's to lose.
Arm Chair Skate Fan
I'd give her a 9.......It won't be handed to her if she has multiple slips and falls, however.........they'll forgive a few baubles.........I hope she holds it together.....42
bugs are smarter than we are
I wonder what would happen if Sasha's nerves don't hold up. She's never been in this position at Nationals before, and while I certainly expect her to win, I would not be completely surprised if someone else pullled off the skate of a life time and kept Sasha on the 2nd step of the podium.
Sasha has never been able to handle pressure before so it wouldn't shock me if there was an upset at Nationals.
Originally Posted by bronxgirl