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Thread: Dan Hollander has an interesting view on the Lysacek/Plushenko debate

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    Dan Hollander has an interesting view on the Lysacek/Plushenko debate

    First of all, let me start out by saying I do not want to start another debate about the whole Lysacek/Plushenko debate--there's been enough of those.

    I was reading on Dan Hollander's website where he commented about this very issue. I thought he gave a creative and interesting way to look at the situation.

    Here's the article http://danhollander.com/olympic-gold...-evan-lysacek/

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    Custom Title prettykeys's Avatar
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    It is a valid position, but I don't believe he's applying it correctly. Personally, I feel that judges gave Lysacek too much credit (especially in the SP) to keep him competitive; I think Takahashi and Plushenko should have been been 1 and 2 after the Short, with a few points' difference ahead of Lysacek (others will disagree, but whatever.) Furthermore, Plushenko did not previously enter a competition where his quads and PCS were discredited, so it's not as if he was playing the game wrong all along and suddenly experienced a rude awakening in Vancouver. What Plushenko was doing served him fine (IMO); it just so happened at the Oly's, the judges saw it differently from what Plushenko (and MANY others) expected. So, don't blame Plushenko. He played what he believed were his best cards in a game he thought he understood, and he's just pushing his interpretation of the rules.

    On the other hand, for those who think Mao should have won because of her 2 triple axels omgomgomg, it's plain as day that the base value of what she was doing (technically) was worth less than several other options (3-3's) she could have taken up. But she didn't, for whatever reason, and now her Ubers are ubermiffed. Team Mao was definitely not playing the game right. They saw what YuNa was getting on her GoE's and PCS, and insisted on going with...what they did.

    And I, too, believe the base values of the 3Axel and quad jumps needs to be raised, and other crap fixed in the CoP.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    I don't think Hollander is saying that Plushenko's team played it all wrong. I think he is just saying that Plushenko and Lysacek both played to their strengths, and we should not discredit Lysacek for playing his own game instead of Plushenko's

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I don't think Hollander is saying that Plushenko's team played it all wrong. I think he is just saying that Plushenko and Lysacek both played to their strengths, and we should not discredit Lysacek for playing his own game instead of Plushenko's
    Nah.

    But when you say Lysacek is not the rightful champion because he did not attempt a quad, or just because he had a superior strategy in the current system to gain more points is insulting to Evan Lysacek, who in my opinion IS the rightful and well deserved Olympic Champion.
    I don't believe Lysacek had a superior strategy and that Plushenko went with an inferior one. The judges merely preferred Lysacek's strategy & execution in Vancouver. There was no clear-cut indication that it would go that way, to either Lysacek or Plushenko. It's more like they were bartering for the same good (i.e. the Gold medal), and the sellers preferred what Evan was offering that day.

    When Plushenko is objecting, he is saying that what he offered had more value than what the sellers accepted from Lysacek, and that the sellers should have realized/agreed with that.

    On the other hand, Team Mao did not have a good strategy, but it was respectable.
    Last edited by prettykeys; 03-02-2010 at 12:28 AM.

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    Go marry the quad if you love it so much DesertRoad's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prettykeys View Post
    I don't believe Lysacek had a superior strategy and that Plushenko went with an inferior one.
    Under the current scoring system, there are many things that are outside a judge's preference and have clear and defined point values. Plushenko only did 3 jumping passes after the halfway mark, and easier jumps at that. Whereas Evan did 5, including 2 of his most diffcult ones. In fact, Evan did 8 jumps after the halfway mark, while Plushenko only did 4. You can quibble over GOE and PCS (although I wouldn't, all those things have clear and defined guidelines from the ISU, as well). But in a pretty basic and glaring way, Plushenko gave up a ton of points, and one and a half of those made the difference. He absolutely did go in with an inferior strategy.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DesertRoad View Post
    But in a pretty basic and glaring way, Plushenko gave up a ton of points, and one and a half of those made the difference. He absolutely did go in with an inferior strategy.
    I think there is another way to look at it. I think that Plushenko did what he could. A skater front-loads his jumps for a reason -- it is easier to land them on fresh legs.

    I don't think Plushenko said, "I know, I'll put my quad first so I will get fewer points for it." "I will only do one quad instead of two because I cannot figure out how many extra points a quad is worth in the CoP." "I will deliberately do only average spins because I don't want those extra GOE points (GOEs are for sissies.)."

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    Yeah! Lets get this party started. enlight78's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by prettykeys View Post
    Nah.

    I don't believe Lysacek had a superior strategy and that Plushenko went with an inferior one. The judges merely preferred Lysacek's strategy & execution in Vancouver. There was no clear-cut indication that it would go that way, to either Lysacek or Plushenko. It's more like they were bartering for the same good (i.e. the Gold medal), and the sellers preferred what Evan was offering that day.

    When Plushenko is objecting, he is saying that what he offered had more value than what the sellers accepted from Lysacek, and that the sellers should have realized/agreed with that.

    On the other hand, Team Mao did not have a good strategy, but it was respectable.
    I would have to disagree; Plushenko did very little to maximas his point potential; One he had no three jump combo; Two he frontloaded his program missing out on the 10% bonus ; Three he had no difficulte transitions into his element that adds to GOE; All these things are stated in the rule book; It was obvious after Cup of Russia and the GPF that a skeaky clean quadless program could beat his if he had any missteps. I would have to say someone mess up because he only did enough to barely win; when he and his team could have made sure it was impossible for anyone to match him technically like Yu-na did

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    leave no stone unturned seniorita's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I don't think Plushenko said, "I know, I'll put my quad first so I will get fewer points for it." "I will only do one quad instead of two because I cannot figure out how many extra points a quad is worth in the CoP." "I will deliberately do only average spins because I don't want those extra GOE points (GOEs are for sissies.)."
    thanx for this.

    By the way he said in a post interview that a second quad was never planned this season, only in emergency. What would be emergency I dunno.

    I found interesting something one person said here, i dont remember where about the useless of having the 4-3 in Lp, and instead do a quad and 2a/3t at the end. It never crossed my mind and I wonder why Mishin's either. And he had 3 jump combo, 4-3-2 that couldnt do but I dont know why he didnt have an easier 3 combo instead. Completely 6.0 attitude. Me thinks that Mishin will send him to Worlds with same layout.

    I also agree that despite all his weakness like no stamina to add more jumps second half and all that and given that they were targeting in level 3 steps only and these are the best spins he can do, Mishin didnt make much effort to give him room for a little error, it was like he was planning Plush to skate perfect. And I m not sure this would have been enough also.
    Last edited by seniorita; 03-02-2010 at 11:36 AM.

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    http://english.chosun.com/site/data/...030200879.html

    Apparently the Japanese skating federation is trying to change the ISU rules to favor jumping machines. I don't mind giving extra points to difficult jumps, but at the same time I don't want a system where a jumping machine like Plushenko or Joubert (or god forbid, another Elvis Stojko!) always wins gold because the quad/3A are weighed so heavily. I really hope the ISU realizes that the reason figure skating was so popular at this year's Olympics was because the better skaters (i.e., those with better skating skills and artistry) won, and doesn't cave into the unholy Russian-Japanese axis of influence.

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    Quote Originally Posted by seniorita View Post
    thanx for this.

    By the way he said in a post interview that a second quad was never planned this season, only in emergency. What would be emergency I dunno.

    I found interesting something one person said here, i dont remember where about the useless of having the 4-3 in Lp, and instead do a quad and 2a/3t at the end. It never crossed my mind and I wonder why Mishin's either. And he had 3 jump combo, 4-3-2 that couldnt do but I dont know why he didnt have an easier 3 combo instead. Completely 6.0 attitude. Me thinks that Mishin will send him to Worlds with same layout.

    I also agree that despite all his weakness like no stamina to add more jumps second half and all that and given that they were targeting in level 3 steps only and these are the best spins he can do, Mishin didnt make much effort to give him room for a little error, it was like he was planning Plush to skate perfect. And I m not sure this would have been enough also.
    I think if Plush had skated perfect he would have won. But I can say the same for Lambiel, Joubert, Abbott, Dai and even Evan.

    I think Plushy lost on his wonky 3L. Had that been clean it might have been enough.
    I agree Mishin did not maximize Plushy's point potential. But not sure what else they could have done. The last minute of the program was telling - Plush did noting but skate in cirlces and blow a kiss to the crowd. We know now that even a double loop in the last minute of the program would have been enough for him to win.

    Maybe Plushy did not realise that some of his jumps - although landed - were never gonna get much GOE.
    It seems to me that Plushy LOST this as much as Evan WON it.

    I think Plushy can skate the same at Worlds and win. But if Dai, Joubert or Jeremy go clean - and let's not forget a clean Oda , maybe with a quad can outscore what Plushy showed in Vancouver.

    It still gets down to nerves and abiltity to perform when it counts. Plushy still has the heart of a champion and he will be hard to beat at Worlds. I do wonder about his health and condition. He did no flip and his Lutz was nowhere near good enough. Maybe these jumps are causing him some pain or have become hard do to because of the bad knees.

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    leave no stone unturned seniorita's Avatar
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    his last minute in program is SL sequence and the last combo spin. Kisses are adressed to the judges not the audience and it is in first half.
    I think he was afraid of edge call in flip, he did one in Rostel Cup and then took it off his program. Flip with edge call, is same as 2axel.
    Where to add the 2loop in the last minute??He had done already his 3 combos. The two were not well landed to add loop. Only 3z-2t would be ok to add it, anyway..it is done now..It was not his best day, he didnt look well or as relaxed as in Europeans. I didnt see the nerves of steel he is accused either. I think even if he skated perfect he would not win anyway, I m past that now.

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    Always Believed! Sk8n Mama's Avatar
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    I don't believe Lysacek had a superior strategy and that Plushenko went with an inferior one. The judges merely preferred Lysacek's strategy & execution in Vancouver. There was no clear-cut indication that it would go that way, to either Lysacek or Plushenko. It's more like they were bartering for the same good (i.e. the Gold medal), and the sellers preferred what Evan was offering that day.
    I disagree. He did have a better strategy in that he made sure he did jumps in the second half, made sure all of his spins had enough variations to be level 4, made sure each footwork sequence had everything the CoP guidelines qualified for L4. It's not that hard to change a jump from 2: 24 in the program to 2:36. But the second one gets 10% extra. In planning the program, Evan's people figured out what *had* to be done in the front end to match Evan's endurance and choreographed those in front end, then saved as many as possible for the back end. That is a winning strategy in the CoP and PLushenko had the same access to CoP and could have done the same. Yes, PLush has to do all those crossovers into the quad and, of course, he has to do it in the front end. But that's 30 seconds max of a 4 1/2 minute program. The problem is what he did with the rest of his program. After the quad, he skated a circle of crosscuts to the 3 ax, then more crosscuts, another jump, crosscuts, trick, crosscuts, trick. The other top guys don't skate this way. Daisuke had a program even though he went for the quad. The other guys read the CoP, and planned their programs accordingly. Plush didn't. He assumed he'd come out there, do his 4-3 combo and some 3 axs, basically dance around the ice making "I'm great" gestures and be handed the gold. And, shock of all shocks, the judges did what the Code of Points told them to: reward minimal crosscuts, true musical interpretation, choreography that led to a balanced program that went to the music, etc.

    The argument that he couldn't know because they'd always given him the PCS anyway is irrelevant. PLushenko had to have known that guys like Chan were getting higher PCS. Not to mention, the rules are the rules. In other sports, you can't argue that the last referee didn't call it as a penalty last time so it's not a penalty this time. If the rules say it's a penalty, it's a penalty. If the rules say, to get a good transitions score you need minimal crosscuts then you can't expect to do crosscuts between elements for the vast majority of your program and get a strong TR score, no matter what happened last time.

    To me, Dan Hollander is right on. Ryan Miller was an outstanding goalie in men's hockey and star of the tourney but no gold for him because it's not about the most and best saves, it's about the most goals scored. The most goals scored generally shows the overall ability of the team. Dale Begg-Smith had the best turns in the moguls but he did not win the gold because it's about the best overall performance, which was given by Alex Bilodeau. And the biggest jump does not win in figure skating because it's about the overall ability of the skater. I come back to the argument I hear repeatedly that since Plushy didn't win, it's not sport. Baloney. Sports are about overall performance for the duration of the event/race/game. Plushy won the first 30 seconds of the LP, but Evan won the rest of the 4 minutes. That's how Evan became the champion. Just like you don't win the Superbowl because you had the longest pass of the game, you don't win World Series just because your player hit a home run, or in the US Open you have one great long drive that ends up right on the green. Those things are harder than a regular pass, a regular run, and an average drive....but it doesn't equate to a win, you have to put it together with everything else needed to win. Like Evan did and PLush did not.
    Last edited by Sk8n Mama; 03-02-2010 at 01:30 PM.

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    /\ Yep.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sk8n Mama View Post
    ...

    The argument that he couldn't know because they'd always given him the PCS anyway is irrelevant. PLushenko had to have known that guys like Chan were getting higher PCS. Not to mention, the rules are the rules. In other sports, you can't argue that the last referee didn't call it as a penalty last time so it's not a penalty this time. If the rules say it's a penalty, it's a penalty. If the rules say, to get a good transitions score you need minimal crosscuts then you can't expect to do crosscuts between elements for the vast majority of your program and get a strong TR score, no matter what happened last time.

    To me, Dan Hollander is right on. Ryan Miller was an outstanding goalie in men's hockey and star of the tourney but no gold for him because it's not about the most and best saves, it's about the most goals scored. The most goals scored generally shows the overall ability of the team. Dale Begg-Smith had the best turns in the moguls but he did not win the gold because it's about the best overall performance, which was given by Alex Bilodeau. And the biggest jump does not win in figure skating because it's about the overall ability of the skater. I come back to the argument I hear repeatedly that since Plushy didn't win, it's not sport. Baloney. Sports are about overall performance for the duration of the event/race/game. Plushy won the first 30 seconds of the LP, but Evan won the rest of the 4 minutes. That's how Evan became the champion. Just like you don't win the Superbowl because you had the longest pass of the game, you don't win World Series just because your player hit a home run, or in the US Open you have one great long drive that ends up right on the green. Those things are harder than a regular pass, a regular run, and an average drive....but it doesn't equate to a win, you have to put it together with everything else needed to win. Like Evan did and PLush did not.
    I disagree. You and others are arguing about where Plushenko left out marks; Evan with his nearly perfectly-clean programs still almost lost to Plushenko. If Plushenko had skated with his average ability, then he would have skated more cleanly than he did at the Oly's and won. If anything, Evan had the weaker strategy and was relying on someone's weakness to come through (and it did)--and even then, it was close. By your reasoning, Evan had a bad strategy because he should have put in a quad somewhere in his LP (preferably in the latter part) because by not doing one, he was leaving out points. Etc, etc.

    Sorry, but judging and reffing controversies happen all the time; I'm not saying that Lysacek isn't the rightful winner, but at the same time, I don't think it is clear-cut that Plushenko lost, nor is it clear that Plushenko should have lost. Furthermore, people aren't necessarily disputing the rules of the game when they argue that a ref made a bad call (or missed a call they should have made).

    When disgruntled Plushenko fans or Mao fans are saying that perhaps they should have been given more credit, there are two main varieties of arguments: 1) the refs/judges weren't doing their job as well as they should have (i.e. they weren't interpreting the rules the best), or 2) the rules were bad.

    Hollander's point ONLY applies to 2).

    And STILL, it doesn't mean that there shouldn't be debate about whether the rules need to be improved. It also doesn't mean that those who think so are merely sore losers (as is implied.)

    So please, spare me the "omg, Plushenko totally should have done this and this and this to earn more points." Clearly, he thought what he was going to do was going to earn him enough. It should have, except that he wasn't clean--but that wasn't exactly part of his "strategy". It just happened.

    On the other hand, Lysacek surely would have come up short if Plushenko skated to his usual level. In a sense, he is lucky that Plushenko missed his mark.

    Conversely, my utter respect goes out to Takahashi, who attempted the quad. I know a lot of fans lamented that if he had just gone with a quadless strategy and gone clean, he may have gotten Silver or even Gold. But hindsight is 20/20; given what he knew, he had the best strategy of the top 3 men. Too bad he didn't make it happen.

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    L'art pour l'art Medusa's Avatar
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    Excellent post, prettykeys. I wholeheartedly agree.

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