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Thread: Midsummer Thoughts on the Olympic Front Runners

  1. #76
    Custom Title bekalc's Avatar
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    Which leads me to Yuna - she reminds me of Johnny Weir. Beautiful skater. Ooodles of talent but you're just never certain she's gonna skate clean. If she pulls together a clean short, she will be hard to beat. If she goes 2/2 ala Worlds - impossible to beat. But unlike the aforementioned skaters - I don't think that's likely. And she's already hinted at retiring after the games - way too much story arc with young lady. Her winning will come down to the skating gods and I simply don't trust them that much...
    Huh? How does Kim compare to Johnny? Kim's a world champion and has never finished of the medal stand at worlds. Johnny barely won a bronze medal.

    Kim skates very COP friendly, Johnny does not. Johnny's biggest issue is his inability to skate COP friendly programs.

    Kim has been the most consistent lady of the last four years. By quite a bit. Yes she normally makes mistakes, but her mistakes tend to be less than her competitors.. Her poorer showings at worlds, were somewhat to do with her health issues. The girl has lost only four times her entire freaking Senior career: 2006 Skate Canada, 2006 Worlds, 2007 Worlds, 2008 GPF. And two of those worlds she was injured and not nearly in great shape.

    Nobody, has Kim's record or has been consistent as Kim has been. So the idea that Kim needs "luck" or the skate gods is a bit like huh?

    As for Joannie she skates well at Skate Canada, but Skate Canada normally doesn't have the hardest competition. But she bombed at the 2006 Worlds in Canada, and has had her issues with Nationals in the past.

    As for comparing Joannie to Sarah Hughes or Tara that's ridiculous. Sarah Hughes throughout her career was a very consistent competitor. She rarely made major mistakes. And so it's not surprising that when Irina who always had issues with big moments faltered, and Michelle who was struggling faltered...

    In the case of Shizuka, yes Shizuka wasn't that consistent but Shiz had delivered at big moments in the past unlike Sasha. And it shouldn't be so surprising Irina bombed at the Olympics again.

    You just cannot compare Joannie to Shizuka, Sarah, or Tara. Especially Sarah or Tara. You cannot even compare her to Shizuka because Shizuka has done 2 clean programs in the past, Joannie has not.

    The only thing I can see happen is Miki pulling a Shizuka because Miki has delivered in the past some programs with high difficulty that are clean.

    Mao is a question mark because Mao was working on her jumping technique last season which I think led to her consistency issues. If Asada is at 2008 form though...

    I'm not saying Joannie cannot win, but to think she's more likely to win that Kim/Asada, when Kim/Asada have had a history of delivering under pressure better than Joannie is a bit of a huh? for me.
    Last edited by bekalc; 09-16-2009 at 05:10 PM.

  2. #77
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    IMO All the ladies have great pressure:
    Kim = Defending World Champ and striving to become the first Korean OGM/OM in figure skating

    Mao/Miki = Japan is defending nation in ladies event, and both of them are expected to follow Shizuka

    Joannie = A chance for OM in 20 years for Canada/ not to mention skating at home

    I think the only lady that is not under extreme pressure like the top 4 is Calrolina Kostner. But then she may want to redeem herself with at least top 5 finish after her dissapointing placement in L.A.

    Most of the ladies who finish on the podium will probably skip the 2010 world, so i guess it will be consulation prize for who ever finish in 4th and 5th position to get a world medel.

  3. #78
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    someone asked if joannie typically skates will in front of home crowd.
    i can think of only once that (I considered she skated well) that was last years nationals. I am not going to add in hyped scores. (last year nationals didn't count.)

  4. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
    Huh? How does Kim compare to Johnny? Kim's a world champion and has never finished of the medal stand at worlds. Johnny barely won a bronze medal.

    Kim skates very COP friendly, Johnny does not. Johnny's biggest issue is his inability to skate COP friendly programs.

    Kim has been the most consistent lady of the last four years. By quite a bit. Yes she normally makes mistakes, but her mistakes tend to be less than her competitors.. Her poorer showings at worlds, were somewhat to do with her health issues. The girl has lost only four times her entire freaking Senior career: 2006 Skate Canada, 2006 Worlds, 2007 Worlds, 2008 GPF. And two of those worlds she was injured and not nearly in great shape.

    Nobody, has Kim's record or has been consistent as Kim has been. So the idea that Kim needs "luck" or the skate gods is a bit like huh?

    As for Joannie she skates well at Skate Canada, but Skate Canada normally doesn't have the hardest competition. But she bombed at the 2006 Worlds in Canada, and has had her issues with Nationals in the past.

    As for comparing Joannie to Sarah Hughes or Tara that's ridiculous. Sarah Hughes throughout her career was a very consistent competitor. She rarely made major mistakes. And so it's not surprising that when Irina who always had issues with big moments faltered, and Michelle who was struggling faltered...

    In the case of Shizuka, yes Shizuka wasn't that consistent but Shiz had delivered at big moments in the past unlike Sasha. And it shouldn't be so surprising Irina bombed at the Olympics again.

    You just cannot compare Joannie to Shizuka, Sarah, or Tara. Especially Sarah or Tara. You cannot even compare her to Shizuka because Shizuka has done 2 clean programs in the past, Joannie has not.

    The only thing I can see happen is Miki pulling a Shizuka because Miki has delivered in the past some programs with high difficulty that are clean.

    Mao is a question mark because Mao was working on her jumping technique last season which I think led to her consistency issues. If Asada is at 2008 form though...

    I'm not saying Joannie cannot win, but to think she's more likely to win that Kim/Asada, when Kim/Asada have had a history of delivering under pressure better than Joannie is a bit of a huh? for me.
    I gave a lot of thought to your response because you make very valid points - I don't know why Kim reminds me of Johnny... but she just does. I think its because both skaters cause me to hold my breath while they skate... as for her health issues - anything that leads to inconsistent skating, is still inconsistent. Is that untrue? Should I not view falls as falls? 2008 / 2009 season was break out for Kim and I hope she keeps that level of quality moving forward. But it is what it is... (don't you just hate that phrase?)

    Look, when it comes to Joannie - I do think the Sarah comparision is fair. Sarah Hughes was a strong competitior and she did have the gift of skating better than she was in a high pressure situation. No arguements there. But in 2002, she was the fourth / fifth best skater in the world - based on quality of the skating of others. No one expected her to win and she did. DivaKwara was in the same spot in 2006. No one expected her to win because of her disaster that was 2005 Worlds. And look at what happened. Joannie easily falls into this catergory and of all the top ladies - she has the potential to do the same. Maybe even more so since skating is all about timing AND she's on home ice.

    Now let's talk about past stats vs. future competiton and "luck"... In 2001, Kwan was on fire. 2005 & 2006, Irina was on so much fire that people didn't even think it was necessary to watch the ladies long program to figure out who'd win the OGM. One thing I've learned watching skating is that unless your name is Katerina Witt - you better have luck on your side when you step out on that olympic ice. And your fans better be humble.

    I too thought the idea of "luck" didn't come into play at the Olympics because Michelle Kwan was the Greatest. Of. All. Time. and had the nerves and the talent to make "luck" a four-letter word. And her fans were eating chicken and junior mints.

    As a Kim fan you mock the skating gods at your own peril.

  5. #80
    Custom Title bekalc's Avatar
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    ook, when it comes to Joannie - I do think the Sarah comparision is fair. Sarah Hughes was a strong competitior and she did have the gift of skating better than she was in a high pressure situation. No arguements there. But in 2002, she was the fourth / fifth best skater in the world - based on quality of the skating of others. No one expected her to win and she did. DivaKwara was in the same spot in 2006. No one expected her to win because of her disaster that was 2005 Worlds. And look at what happened. Joannie easily falls into this catergory and of all the top ladies - she has the potential to do the same. Maybe even more so since skating is all about timing AND she's on home ice.
    I just don't see this once again. The thing about Joannie is that she always manages to make some kind of mistake to ensure that she doesn't win. And because Joannie is doing less difficulty than the likes of Kim and Asada, Joannie actually has to be perfect.

    Arakawa had managed before 2006 Olympics to step it up to the plate at higher pressure situations see 2004 Worlds. And Sarah Hughes was a very consistent competitor.. .

    You cannot compare Arakawa to Rochette. And I wasn't surprised at all by Arakawa's win. She was looking much better in the Olympic season, which is way more telling than how she looked at 2005 worlds. Practice reports said Arakawa was lighting up the joint. After the short program, I totally thought Arakawa was going to skate lights out like she did in 2004 and win.

  6. #81
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    Rochette beat Asada three out of five times in the 08-09 season. I wouldn't necessarily predict it at the Olympics though. That said, I do think that Rochette (despite the Grand Prix Final) is a stronger skater than she's been, mentally. Dick Button said something along the lines that it's only been these past two seasons where she's really realized how good she was and that she can compete with the best in the world. The question than becomes does Vancouver frighten or energize her. I'm hoping for the latter. Competing on home turf energized Manley, but we saw Kostner collapse in 2006 (or Hubert in 1992).

    I understand the trepidation to predict the easy favourites for 1-2-3 at the Olympics, as there's always someone who rises to the occasion (Arakawa, Hughes), someone who falters (fill in the blank), but sometimes, the easy favourites are the winners. Looking at Turin, the ice dance medalists mirrored the Worlds 05 medalists; men had Plushenko pushing the medalists down one spot, and pairs had two of the three medalists repeating. And the thing with Kim and Asada is at their best (using the season's personal best scores) are a full 10-15 points ahead of the rest of the field (as someone else noted - they can make mistakes and still be record-beaters), with Rochette/Ando/Kostner et al clustered below them (which makes the race for bronze a great one)..

  7. #82
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    I only watch the Ladies. The media "favorite" which I guess will be YuNa, rarely wins. Watch Miki for the Gold, Mao silver, YuNa Bronze. Fumie may surprise everyone (I hope so).

  8. #83
    Dreaming and dancing Bennett's Avatar
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    Good point.

    I'm worried more about Mao's mental strength than Yuna's though. Mao seems to deliver stronger programs at non-ISU events than actual comps. She is also a lot more expressive at galas than comps. Joannie could be vulnerable to pressures at home.

    Miki could surprise us. She is so unpredictable. But when she falls apart, it seems not necessarily all because of outside pressures, but also other things going on such as injuries and other mental issues within herself. She could actually be pretty strong under outside pressures and have histories of delivering clean programs at big events. When she is on, she is on, and vice versa.

    I couldn't imagine fumie medaling. But I could picture her making the Olympic team and make the top 8. Yet, I also want Suzuki to make the team.
    Last edited by Bennett; 09-20-2009 at 12:15 PM.

  9. #84
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    I think it's all depend on how much Kim/Asada can build up a cushion between the rest of the field. If they skate clean and up to their potential, Kim with 3+3 and Asada with either 3F+3Lo or 3A+2T, they can easily get score around 74+ for sure.
    The rest of the field Ando/Kostner with their 3+3 and Rochett with her home town advantage, have at least 6 to 8 points to catch up. That's mean either Kim or Asada can afford to make at least one big mistake ( a fall or poped jump) to stay on the podium. If they have big cushion, i can see Kim leaving out the 3Lo and Asada leaving out the 3+3 for the LP.
    I'm sure 6 clean triples program from either them is more than enough to win OGM.

  10. #85
    "Hold an edge and look sexy!" museksk8r's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fairly4 View Post
    someone asked if joannie typically skates will in front of home crowd.........
    At Skate Canada grand prix competitions, Joannie has won the 2005 silver, the 2006 gold, the 2007 bronze, and the 2008 gold. She has won 5 Canadian National Championships, 2 of those skating clean 7 triple LPs (in 2005 and in 2009).

    At the 2006 Worlds-post Olympics in Canada, she was 1st in the QR, 7th in the SP, and 8th in the LP to finish 7th overall. Not to make excuses for her, but I remember hearing she was dealing with the death of a good friend who had trained in the same rink with her at the time, so she wasn't in the best frame of mind dealing with such a distraction.

    At last season's 4CC held in the 2010 Vancouver Olympic rink, she placed 2nd in the SP and 2nd in the LP (landing 7 triples, but only credited with 6 triples because her 3+3 sequence had an extra step in between the two jumps, negating the 2nd triple) to finish 2nd overall. At the same competition, Yu-Na Kim placed 1st in the SP and 3rd in the LP to finish 1st overall. Mao Asada placed 6th in the SP and 1st in the LP to finish 3rd overall.
    Last edited by museksk8r; 09-21-2009 at 11:07 AM.

  11. #86
    Thanks Team Abbott snowflake's Avatar
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    Joannie Rochette

    Thanks for the sum up museksk8r. Looks good for Joannie My impression is that she has had low self-esteem, not realising how good she is, and although performing so well Now that she must believe in herself(after last season's world silver) she is my olympic ladies favorite.

  12. #87
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    I saw Rochette in Washington at Worlds and she was not very good. in comparison to some of the other top skaters. I dont even think she could do a consistent lutz.. It is interesting to me that she has remained in skating and improved every year ( perhaps more skaters need to hang in there and develop) She could very well improve some more and have a great day and win. I think she has a very complete package with great sensitivity to the nuances of music, and wonderful athletic ability. I hope the home court works for her. I also love her dresses and I think she has a beautiful ice skating figure.

  13. #88
    Rink Rat i love to skate's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ginask8s View Post
    I saw Rochette in Washington at Worlds and she was not very good. in comparison to some of the other top skaters. I dont even think she could do a consistent lutz.. It is interesting to me that she has remained in skating and improved every year ( perhaps more skaters need to hang in there and develop) She could very well improve some more and have a great day and win. I think she has a very complete package with great sensitivity to the nuances of music, and wonderful athletic ability. I hope the home court works for her. I also love her dresses and I think she has a beautiful ice skating figure.
    Well Worlds in Washington was her first World Championship, of course she wouldn't be as good as the top competitors! That was the year she also spent re-working her lutz because she used to flutz. It caused her two years of struggling but it has paid off for her now.

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