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Thread: 2009-10 ISU Grand Prix selection guidelines

  1. #151
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spun Silver View Post
    I do think it's very cynical and wrong-headed to set it up in advance as a case of judging bias if Sasha wins, though. Have a little more faith in the judges, and your skater.
    Judging bias seems to be more of a problem at Nationals than ISU events. If Sasha wins Skate America in front of ISU judges, she will probably deserve it.

    At Nationals however, we know that the judges can make their favorite win. So the question is - How does a skater become their favorite? Well, Caroline was the top American lady in her last 4 ISU events. She will have 2, maybe 3 more ISU events before Nationals. If she can stay top American, the USFSA judges will treat her better than last year. If she can WIN an event, they will be ready to hand her the gold before she even skates.

  2. #152
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    First off, :chorus: at the Caroline Zhang Wheaties box...her name is printed so small too

    Second, I wonder if Meissner is eligible for a GP and whether she would be considered for SA. I'm willing to bet that it will wind up being Flatt/Czisny/Cohen, with either Nagasu or Zhang in line as an alternate (unless they get two others). But Kimmie should at least get some international experience- it would be a shame if she's relegated to the nationals qualifying comps.

    And third, even though Cohen may indeed get that SA assignment, that's no guarantee that she will show up. Of course, given that she is in good health she would, but based on her competitive history I would not get discouraged about Zhang (or whomever) losing a spot. If Cohen withdraws, someone will get it back. (I think?? Unless the other US skaters can get two other GPs.)

    I think [Cohen is] the underdog here.
    Hard to tell until she actually skates and sees the scores she gets.

  3. #153
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    I completely agree with you. Someone needs to enlighten her parents (they were from China, I guess they know little about what the publicity is) the whole "Coach Mingzhu Li + Kwan Connection" low-profile Chinese thing will get Caroline nowhere on this stage. She needs to step into the spotlight, let people know her. Granted, the attention will bring the huge pressure on Caroline. But that's the part of deal being a sportsman, you cannot dream being a sports champion without being noticed. And her family needs to find a better agent. Shep Goldberg is a lousy lousy lousy one, his handling of Michelle Kwan in 98 Olympics was a huge mistake.

    Quote Originally Posted by feraina View Post
    Hilarious!

    But, unfortunately I don't think Caroline's agent and her team in general have any intention to increase the level of publicity. She said several times that her agent's role is to help her keep a low profile, to minimize publicity and its interference with her training.

    Personally, I think that's a mistake. I think with Sasha back in the picture (and seemingly assured of a ticket to Vancouver), and the even-matchedness of the younger skaters, getting that other berth will come down to who can stir the greatest amount of excitement in the public's imagination. Alissa probably won last season because many people thought that the public would be excited about having a "ladies' champion" instead of a "girls' champion", something that her team tirelessly promoted up until the night before the LP.

    Well, GP results might matter, too. But despite the rule changes, USFSA will likely pick the team largely according to National's, and National's judging has shown great willingness to massage the results accordingly to however they like.

  4. #154
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    I think the guessing is pretty much over about the U.S. ladies at Skate America.

    USFS executive director just said quite unambigously that they will take Sasha. I don't think Skate America has ever declined to invite the U.S. national champion, so Alissa's in. Rachael is one of the seeded skaters, so she will certainly be Skate America's choice from the 4-6 group.

    I cannot see the ISU allowing Sasha to skate in a second event. To do so they would have to throw out their own rule -- which was just announced a couple of weeks ago -- about eligibility for returning skaters. They would have to go back and pass a new rule that says, oh, by the way, last week's rule applies to all skaters except those named Sasha Cohen.

    As for Caroline Zhang, she will get her chance to shine at two other events. Cup of China and Eric Bompard will be glad to grab her. I expect USFS to do its usual competant job of mild arm-twisting to get at least one invitation for their other qualified skaters like Mirai, Ashley and Kimmie.

    If Sasha should happen to withdraw before Skate America, they could use that spot to give a second event to whoever scores the highest in their first one.

  5. #155
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    USFS executive director just said quite unambigously that they will take Sasha. I don't think Skate America has ever declined to invite the U.S. national champion, so Alissa's in. Rachael is one of the seeded skaters, so she will certainly be Skate America's choice from the 4-6 group.
    I don't know how the seeding thing works but where is the quote that Raith said they would take Cohen to SA. I just read him say that they'd welcome her back and she would be a great addition to an already deep US field.


    As for Caroline Zhang, she will get her chance to shine at two other events. Cup of China and Eric Bompard will be glad to grab her. I expect USFS to do its usual competant job of mild arm-twisting to get at least one invitation for their other qualified skaters like Mirai, Ashley and Kimmie.
    Let's hope so.

    If Sasha should happen to withdraw before Skate America, they could use that spot to give a second event to whoever scores the highest in their first one.
    Right now I would put the probability of her withdrawing at 50/50. Let's flip a coin. Heads or tails?

    (FTR, she did SA in 2001 and 2003, but backed out in 2004 and 2005- she didn't get SA in 2002 IIRC- that's how I reached that statistic )

    I like your idea though. If they give it to Kimmie that probably means no sectionals for her (like Em Hughes last year).

  6. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Dog View Post
    I don't know how the seeding thing works but where is the quote that Raith said they would take Cohen to SA. I just read him say that they'd welcome her back and she would be a great addition to an already deep US field.
    Posts #142 and 143 on this thread.

    From the San Francisco Chronical

    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/articl...SPFK17HEN8.DTL

    Cohen fans, mark your calendars. It's a "logical assumption" the Olympic silver medalist will be at Skate America in November, U.S. Figure Skating executive director David Raith said.

    Cohen announced this week she's returning to competitive skating after a three-year layoff in hopes of making the Vancouver Games. Grand Prix assignments will be made May 30.

    "She's not automatic. But I think when her name shows up on the list, she'll be one of the first chosen," Raith said. Skate America, which is Nov. 13-15 in Lake Placid, N.Y., has the first rights to Cohen.
    Last edited by Mathman; 05-09-2009 at 05:47 PM.

  7. #157
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    Quote Originally Posted by ANW View Post
    I completely agree with you. Someone needs to enlighten her parents (they were from China, I guess they know little about what the publicity is) the whole "Coach Mingzhu Li + Kwan Connection" low-profile Chinese thing will get Caroline nowhere on this stage...

    And her family needs to find a better agent. Shep Goldberg is a lousy lousy lousy one, his handling of Michelle Kwan in 98 Olympics was a huge mistake.
    How did Mr. Goldberg misfire in promoting Michelle Kwan in 1998? She didn't win the Olympic gold medal, but she quickly became a household name and a millionaire through endorsements. More so than the Olympic champion, Tara.

  8. #158
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    Quote Originally Posted by feraina View Post
    But, unfortunately I don't think Caroline's agent and her team in general have any intention to increase the level of publicity. She said several times that her agent's role is to help her keep a low profile, to minimize publicity and its interference with her training.
    I didn't want to say anything, but I have trouble understanding this. They hired an agent, at considerable expense, to keep Caroline OUT of the news media? Does Shep stand outside Caroline's front door and fight off reporters with Chinese nunchaku ?

  9. #159
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    Quote Originally Posted by PolymerBob View Post

    Well, Caroline was the top American lady in her last 4 ISU events. She will have 2, maybe 3 more ISU events before Nationals. If she can stay top American, the USFSA judges will treat her better than last year. If she can WIN an event, they will be ready to hand her the gold before she even skates.
    Rachael was the top US lady at both her GP events (4th at SA and 2nd at CoR), while Caroline was 5th and 3rd at her GP events. Rachael is the National silver medalist, and finished top 5 at Worlds. Rachael is also in the "A" envelope, while Caroline is in "B". So I don't see that Caroline is the "top American".

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    Quote Originally Posted by chuckm View Post
    Rachael was the top US lady at both her GP events (4th at SA and 2nd at CoR), while Caroline was 5th and 3rd at her GP events. Rachael is the National silver medalist, and finished top 5 at Worlds. Rachael is also in the "A" envelope, while Caroline is in "B". So I don't see that Caroline is the "top American".
    The one time they went head-to-head at 4CC, Caroline topped Rachel (4th to 5th). But Rachel has had the overall better results. I guess Czisny gets in "A" as the national champ but honestly, I don't feel she deserves it 100%.

  11. #161
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    GP question- how do you get "seeded" or "unseeded"?

  12. #162
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    Quote Originally Posted by Red Dog View Post
    GP question- how do you get "seeded" or "unseeded"?
    The "seeded" skaters are the ones that finished in the top 6 at worlds. They are "seeded" into the grand prix by the requirement that each of 1-3 gets 2 events (in other words, they are spread out so they can't face each other until the finals), and 4-6 each get two events.

    The only way you can get "unseeded" is if you withdraw from the Grand Prix altother. Then there is a formula for which skaters are elevated to the "seeded" position in the place of the skater who withdrew.

    All other skaters are "invited." There are various rules about which categories of invited skaters must get invited to two events, which must get invited to at least one, and which may get invited to at least one.
    Last edited by Mathman; 05-09-2009 at 07:19 PM.

  13. #163
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    Quote Originally Posted by PolymerBob View Post
    I didn't want to say anything, but I have trouble understanding this. They hired an agent, at considerable expense, to keep Caroline OUT of the news media? Does Shep stand outside Caroline's front door and fight off reporters with Chinese nunchaku ?
    Yes, I think basically he does.

    I believe that part of Goldberg's job is to manage the deluge of requests for public appearances, interviews, autograph signings for charity auctions, and all that.

    If someone approaches Caroline and asks her to make a public appearance endorsing the cancer fund, she can hardly say no. So this way she can say, "Mr. Goldberg co-ordinates my schedule, so send the request to him. I sure hope I will be able to do it!"

    Quote Originally Posted by PolymerBob
    Judging bias seems to be more of a problem at Nationals than ISU events. If Sasha wins Skate America in front of ISU judges, she will probably deserve it.

    At Nationals however, we know that the judges can make their favorite win.
    I don’t think this is really the case. If you look at nationals over the years, there are plenty of cases where the favorite and presumed USFS darling has been upset.

    What does happen is that the judges at nationals (this is true of every country) tend to inflate the scores of the winner by 10 points or so in order to give her a boost going into worlds.

    I think that’s what happened in ladies last year. Alissa skated a fine short program and was so far ahead that it seemed a foregone conclusion that she would win. So the judges went into the long program with the mind set that here is our champion, let’s all get behind her and push.
    Last edited by Mathman; 05-09-2009 at 07:47 PM.

  14. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    What does happen is that the judges at nationals (this is true of every country) tend to inflate the scores of the winner by 10 points or so in order to give her a boost going into worlds.

    I think that’s what happened in ladies last year. Alissa skated a fine short program and was so far ahead that it seemed a foregone conclusion that she would win. So the judges went into the long program with the mind set that here is our champion, let’s all get behind her and push.
    And that's exactly what the USFS judges can do again with Sasha: give her such a huge lead after the SP that even if she lands only 3-4 triples in the FS, she gets the US Championship anyway.

    If that happens again and then Sasha bombs at Vancouver, the USFS will be to blame once again.

  15. #165
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I don't think Skate America has ever declined to invite the U.S. national champion, so Alissa's in. Rachael is one of the seeded skaters, so she will certainly be Skate America's choice from the 4-6 group.
    I don't recall a case in ladies, but in men's, Rudy Galindo, the 1996 US Men's Champion & World bronze medallist, was not invited to Skate America in fall 1996. Todd Eldredge, the 1996 US Men's Silver Medallist and World Champion, was invited instead. This was one reason that Rudy said he went pro, since it was such a ringing non-endorsement by USFS.

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