What does Mai need to improve to catch up to Mao?
What does Mai Asada have to improve to reach the level of her younger sister someday? I saw her skate at Skate America recently, and I have seen her skate at other competitions before this years opening GP event at Skate America. In my opinion she is still not as strong a skater as her sister, some may disagree, but that is how I see it still at this point. So if you are of the same opinion that she still isnt as strong a skater as her younger sister at this point, what does she need to improve to reach her younger sisters level as a skater.
Desperate Mouse Killer
That is quite impossible. She seems lost her inspiration.
I should say , improve speed and jumps?
Mai went through puberty, lost all her jumps (and confidence) and is now trying to get it all back.
Mao is where her sister was three seasons ago...going through puberty, losing her jumps and having to re-learn.
I think both sisters are equally talented but Mai just went through her growth spurt several years before Mao and therefore never got the attention that her younger sister did (for being a precocious talent).
As the sisters mature, they remind me more and more of one another.
Mai has an egregious toe axel, and she is rather lackluster on the ice.
Mao will work through her growth issues and she while doing so, she will still remain one of the top skaters in the World. Mai never had anywhere near the talent Mao has, and IMO at 19, she never will.
Beliver in Sasha's Perfect Program
Mai maybe once had the potentail to be a great skater, but not anymore. She is much like michelle's big sis Karen, who was a very gentle skater, had a lot of jump problems and just wasn't really motivated.
It's gotta be tough to be in the same sport as her sister and dealing with the constant comparison whether its from herself or outside.
She is very supportive of Mao. OT, Mai has a beautiful face, and has been working a fashion model for a while. She may have a future there
Originally Posted by passion
I found her jumping weak in Skate America. She wasnt even able to land solo triples really solidly. Overall she was boring, her basic skating was average, and she just looked like a low ranked skater trying her best. Which isnt that surprising, there are many of those, and you try to enjoy them for what they are. The thing that is most glaring in her case is she is from Japan, and it is hard to believe they couldnt find enough people better then her to send given their incredible depth.
Mai finished 8th at the last two Japanese Nationals.
Danielle Kahle, Juliana Cannarozzo and Katy Taylor finished 6th, 7th and 8th at 2007 US Nationals, and none of them were submitted for GP invitations.
I agree that Mai Asada gave mediocre performances at Skate America. A friend who attended the competition said that Mai shook her head and laughed after the FS, but didn't seem to care that she hadn't skated well.
I have the feeling that Mai came to the US to train with Mao because Mao (and/or her their parents) insisted on it, and Mao probably also persuaded the Japanese federation to submit Mai for the GP. I'm not sure how committed Mai is to a figure skating career. I do know that a couple of years back, she took a year off from skating to work as a model.
Mai Asada finished 6th to Katy Taylor's 11th at last year's Skate America, 32.22 points ahead of Taylor. A week later, Taylor also placed last at Skate Canada, earning less than four points more than at Skate America. Perhaps being 8th at Japanese Nationals isn't worse than placing 6th, 7th, or 8th at US Nationals.
Originally Posted by chuckm
The ISU 2006-7 Personal Best list for Ladies on the ISU site is down. If Taylor qualified for this year's GP (top 75 PB) with a top score of 110.57 points in international competition, which, IIRC, she did not, then it's USFS's issue for not putting her on the invite list or inviting her to Skate America. If USFS wanted Kahle to compete at GP, they needed to invite her to SA, because she didn't compete in GP, 4C's, or Worlds last year and didn't qualify, like Asada did. Cannarozzo is still a junior this year, and IIRC, had high enough scores last year to qualify for an invitation, had she moved to seniors.
Looking at the other Japanese Ladies who scored higher than Asada at Japanese Nationals,
01. Mao Asada 211.76 : SP(01) 71.14 + FS(01)140.62
02. Ando 185.66 : SP(02) 69.50 + FS(03)116.16
03. Nakano 179.72 : SP(03) 63.34 + FS(02)116.38
04. Suguri 172.56 : SP(05) 58.56 + FS(04)114.00
05. Onda 163.30 : SP(04) 58.62 + FS(05)104.68
06. Sawada 156.48 : SP(08) 52.90 + FS(06)103.58
07. Takeda 152.90 : SP(09) 51.78 + FS(07)101.12
08. Mai Asada 148.28 : SP(06) 55.56 + FS(11) 92.72
Asada, Ando, and Nakano earned GP invites based on their results at Worlds, Suguri on PB and WR, Onda retired, Sawada on PB, Takeda -- I'm guess at PB (she had 126.43/125.44 at Jr Worlds and JGPF, with fewer elements than Katy Taylor's senior programs).
Sawada and Takeda both got two invites to Mai Asada's one. Should the Japanese Fed have withdrawn Asada's name, even though she earned a chance for a spot out of shame that she's not her sister? She got the spot she earned. If 120+ points doesn't earn at top 75 PB next year (assuming the rules stay the same), then the way to see if the Japanese Fed is pushing for her or just letting her be invited to a spot she earned is if she's invited to NHK next year.
The Japanese Federation is pouring a lot of money into her skating. If she's useful to them keeping her younger sister company while earning her own GP spots, why should this be an issue? There were three skaters who did worse than she at Skate America, including the #5 skater at Europeans/#11th at Worlds last year and the #3 skater at last year's Asia games.
The Zamboni Rocks!!!
Don't Mai and Mao kind of remind you of Michelle and Karen Kwan??
A bit sad to see Mai being described just as a mediocre skater - not so long ago there were people marvelling at her artistry. Peggy and Dick seemed quite taken with her at Campbells last year. I really hoped that she will be able if not catch up to Mao then at least be competetive with Yukari/Fumie and the rest for the World berths. In one of the practices at the beginning of the last season I had problems telling her apart from Mao - her jumps were looking quite solid.Sadly, it seems that she gained weight and it had a negative effect on her speed and jumps (again). Tatiana Tarasova even requested her to lose some weight - by eating some kind of nuts, I forgot what that was.
I don't think she is less talented than Mao - she is a very artistic skater and she used to attempt 3A and 3-3s before her injury and growth spurt. What makes her a less accomplished skater? Well, to begin with, she started skating later than Mao - well, at the sime time, actually, but Mai was older when she started. When the growth spurt hit, her technique wasn't yet very solid and it influenced her skating more than Mao's. The injury and the time taken off to concentrate on working as a model surely didn't help either.
To follow, Mai doesn't seem to be as fierce competitor as Mao is. She seems rather shy and not as ambitious. I think she lacks the confidence in herself and perhaps does not invest as much effort in training because she does not believe that she can catch up to the elite skaters anyway.
I hope she will find some motivation - I really like the balletic quality of her skating (see her last season's LP at Campbells') and with more speed and more solid jumps she could be a great skater to watch.
I was thinking of them after SA & SC. I imagine Mao & Mai are like Michelle & Karen. There probably isn't anything more exciting then being able to share this experience with your own sister.
Originally Posted by sillylionlove
Mai has a simply horrible toe axel (instead of a 2T) that causes the judges to downgrade her combinations. She was toe-axeling back in 2004 when she finished 4th at Junior Worlds behind Miki, Kimmie Meissner and Katy Taylor. Yes, she was doing 3As, but they were downgraded as well.
Her PB free skate score is 89.63 (from Skate America 2006), which would be good at the Junior level, but hardly competitive at the Senior level. That's probably because she doesn't get full credit for her jumps due to underrotation. She is 19 now and the likelihood of her improving her jump technique is low.
I would just reitterate that at Skate America Mai was totally uninspiring and did just shrug her shoulders and give a funny little laugh at the end of her FS. I was rather surprised. She didn't seem to be trying at all. I would say to catch up to Mao she needs to improve everything.