Miki Ando-interesting to look at her last few years.
It is interesting to look at Miki Ando, the hotshot who burst onto the senior scene with a 4th at Worlds in 2004, with an array of jumping firepower, with such huge promise who some saw as somebody who would start to dominate the womens field for years to come. Then almost written off after last year as somebody who would have to scramble just to get out of Japan, who would likely never be a World medalist. Now early signs this year is she might still fulfill that early potential, just when it looked like her window had passed. What do you think.
MY TVC 1 5
It does seem she is on that "living up to the potential" path, seen just a couple short years ago with the slight "lag" in performance that made most wonder. It constantly reminded me of Peggy's comment at Turin about being the end or (what I like to think) a new beginning of Miki. It did bother me at first to think of anyone having an "off" performance and having a commenter say something that could be derogatory particularly at the Olys, but now after reformulating it in my brain I am a little more comfortable - i.e the "new beginning" part. I was even starting to doubt, when I should know better from past examples, one in particular Shizuka. I made some really stupid assumptions regarding her and am glad she didn't go the way I was thinking for about a month after the Olys. I feel like a schmuck for giving up so quickly.
In the "window" analogy I would think it is just a smaller "window" now, just that. She seems to be fitting through it wonderfully, and she really looks like one of the physically stronger Ladies. With her I would only THINK that there is less likelihood of an injury stopping her from this progression (knock on wood) and she is not going to have to deal with "body growth issues" (including mental chemical) so she should be "ready steady go" IMO.
And personally, I don't care if she ever does the quad again in comp. I am sure she feels different, and a lot of fans might feel different. I am mostly happy just to see a happy and satisfied / content look on her face, different then the ones at the end of 05 and Olys.
Go "Angelic Kitty" - although I think "Angel Cat" - "Tenshi Neko" fits her better now.
Last edited by SeaniBu; 11-11-2006 at 01:24 PM.
Sounds to me that Miki was over-hyped and cracked under the pressure of trying to live up to the press. After last season, the hype ended -- and now she is more relaxed -- while the next over-hyped sensation (Mao) seems to be having problems.
IMO, all commentators should shut up about the young up-and-comers.
Rooting for the divas with Kwanford
I don't know about this theory. Miki was in the news during the off-season for losing her funding from the Japanese Federation after her poor Olympic performance, if I'm not mistaken. That doesn't sound like less pressure but more to me. Maybe she decided 2006-07was a do or die season. For some personality types, the experience of being written off can bring out a lot of inner strength.
Anyway, I'm very happy for her! She's terrific. Besides, I like it when skaters prove the armchair critics wrong, especially those who enjoy predicting a career end. (I always have an eye to Sasha's triumphant return.)
However, I still think Mao will come out on top. Whether this season or another one, I don't know. But as long as she's healthy, she has more of what it takes to get and stay on top than anyone else, IMO. It was wonderful to see her growing up at SA.
In my heart, I'm actually Canadian....
I was personally quite amazed at how good Miki skated -- and looked -- at Skate America; it wasn't until then that I finally got the vaguest idea what the big deal was about her, because up until then, "underwhelmed" would not even begin to cover the impression (or lack thereof) she left on me -- and that was before her rough seasons.
ITA agree with Sean about the quad -- seems to me that her entire reputation revolved around that stupid thing (which she hasn't done in HOW long now??) at the expense of other aspects of her skating; it certainly ended up putting a lot more pressure on her, as if there isn't enough pressure being one of the top Senior Ladies in Japan these days anyway.
Also, comments were made that off-ice she she really "shoveled it in" almost making fun of her and Oda eating together all the time and how it was starting to tell on her. That may have done it, too, because was the first thing that Peggy Fleming said at the start of her program I think in Hartfor , "Wow, she's in shape."
Lovin' the Kween ... Now and Forever
I love how she has started this season! She has been somewhat overlooked with all the talk about Mao, but she handled that very well at SA. I had a chance to meet her and congratulate her, and she seemed so genuinely happy about her skating ... she just seems like a different person now.
Who knows what will happen the rest of the season, but I like the fact that she already has one fantastic competition under her belt ... that should give her the encouragement to keep working hard.
Miki's path is becoming more and more like Shizuka's path. Watch out 2010 Olympics...
Though I want to add that she looked great at the beginning of last season as well. She skated well at her two initial Grand Prixs and then it all unravelled toward the end of the season.
Lovin' the Kween ... Now and Forever
I remember that as well, soogar. It seemed that when they started downgrading her 3/3's, she lost confidence and struggled from that point on.
Also, someone at SA told me her father had passed away last season ... I had not heard that before.
I hope this is a great season for her.
MY TVC 1 5
Yep they brought it up right before the Oly comp - jerk reporters, over a incident that happened in 2004 I believe. But I am not sure of the date.
Found an article that mentioned this for you.
"A news conference with all three women ended abruptly Sunday after Ando erupted into tears when a Japanese reporter asked her about her father, who died years ago. Ando was unable to answer. The only sounds in the room were her sobs and the rapid-fire clicks from dozens of photographers."
What a bunch of lousy twerp reporters!
Last edited by SeaniBu; 11-12-2006 at 01:59 PM.
I think like Arakawa, Ando has solid, classic technique. In Dortmund, I was more impressed with her solid centering and ability to maintain speed in her spins, and her mostly careful positions and transitions in them, as well as the beautiful one-footed step sequence into her 3F with no pause at all between steps and jump, than all the quad and 3/3 hype. I saw Asada in Paris last year, and she has a flutz as pronounced as Cohen's, and not the full arsenal of triples. I don't think her basic technique is as good as Ando's, and her stroking isn't as powerful, with more shallow edges and higher in the knees.
In my opinion, the pressure and the sponsorships after her Jr. Worlds win and (senior) Worlds debut -- in which I thought she should have finished 7th, at best -- in 2004 did Ando no good. It distracted her from the task at hand: adjusting to puberty, which took her over a year.
MY TVC 1 5
More on that Miki's dad's death being brought up before the comp in Turino topic.....
"Sunday one Japanese reporter apparently violated the pact by asking Ando about her father, who died when she was a small girl." - Monday, February 20, 2006
I have never heard a Japanese person say "pimp slap" but I hope that reporter received one or 2!
I would defiantly agree with that. My friends who have been exposed to her by me recently, have said she might have one of the best female figures in the world right now (can't argue with that). That is quite a complement, yet having that happen to a figure skater is going to be really difficult to compensate for. Blessing and a curse.
Originally Posted by hockeyfan228
Last edited by SeaniBu; 11-12-2006 at 02:09 PM.
as far as I know, Toyota is Miki's current sponsor. I believe she had so much endorsement last year that I don't think she needs to worry about her finance anytime soon. I am sure Toyota is paying for her all the skating related expenses so she has nothing to worry about.
I agree. Her GPs last season showed great imrovement. There must have been something personal that happened when she started going down hill. I don't think it was all Heiss. Just my specs.
Originally Posted by soogar
If she maintains what she showed in SA in Paris, we may already know the winner of the GPF.
It's not the expenses -- it's the number of appearances she has to make on her sponsors' behalf and the image she has to uphold. Those are distractions in themselves.
Originally Posted by ks777