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Thread: Hersh: Nagasu not on par with Flatt? HUH?

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    I like pie. Tonichelle's Avatar
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    News Hersh: Nagasu not on par with Flatt? HUH?

    I am trying to figure out how U.S. Figure Skating decided Mirai Nagasu does not belong on the same level as Rachael Flatt in the ``team envelopes'' for the 2010-11 season USFS announced Friday.

    That means Nagasu will get lower funding than Flatt.
    http://newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/...flatt-huh.html

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    Currently frozen as a popsicle Chemistry66's Avatar
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    As much as it stinks for Mirai to not be one the same Tier as Rachael, Hersh is being a bit harsh. The criteria for the next year's envelopes are decided before the competitve season starts. No one could have known that Mirai would beat Rachael at the Olympics/Worlds, much less be the second Olympic qualifier. Last year, it was predicted Rachael and Caroline, then from Rachael/Ashley/Sasha more at the beginning of the season. The qualifications are set early, and the skaters fall where they fall. The tiers are a new development as of last year, and unfortunately Mirai falls in Team A, but Tier 2 and not 1.

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    Actually, USFS has very specific criteria, unlike Mr. Hersh's baseless accusation (again!) of vagueness:

    Criteria for Envelope A, Tier One:

    * Placements 1st-3rd at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, or,
    * Placements 1st-3rd at the 2010 World Figure Skating Championships, or
    * Placements 1st-3rd in the ISU World Standings at the conclusion of the 2009-10 season, or
    * 2010 U.S. senior champion combined with a top-10 finish at the 2010 Olympics or a top-10 finish at 2010 World Figure Skating Championships


    Since Nagasu didn't fulfill any of the criteria listed above while Rachael Flatt did, it's only logical that the rules are followed. Besides, Nagasu was rather inconsistent internationally. Sure, she did better than Flatt at Olympics and Worlds but not on the GP Circuit or the Nationals. Plus, Flatt actually beat Nagasu at the Worlds FS where Nagasu managed only 11th. All Mirai had to do was beating Laura Lepisto for the World Bronze but somehow, she failed to do that even after holding the lead in the SP.

    That's why anything Phil Hersh writes needs to be viewed with a grain of salt. After GP and right before the Nationals, Hersh and his friends were ready to hand the Olympic Silver medal to Rachael Flatt. He just seems to jump from place to place without any consistency, depending on what kind of pseudo-controversy he thinks he can dig up and make a story out of nothing.

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    Philip Hersh is stupid. Irrelevant and stupid, a combination worthy of -3 GOE.

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    For those of you who have not seen the Team Envelopes for the 2010-11 Season, check out this link:

    http://usfsa.org/Story.asp?id=44590&type=media

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    Quote Originally Posted by wallylutz View Post
    Actually, USFS has very specific criteria, unlike Mr. Hersh's baseless accusation (again!) of vagueness:

    Criteria for Envelope A, Tier One:

    * Placements 1st-3rd at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games, or,
    * Placements 1st-3rd at the 2010 World Figure Skating Championships, or
    * Placements 1st-3rd in the ISU World Standings at the conclusion of the 2009-10 season, or
    * 2010 U.S. senior champion combined with a top-10 finish at the 2010 Olympics or a top-10 finish at 2010 World Figure Skating Championships


    Since Nagasu didn't fulfill any of the criteria listed above while Rachael Flatt did, it's only logical that the rules are followed. Besides, Nagasu was rather inconsistent internationally. Sure, she did better than Flatt at Olympics and Worlds but not on the GP Circuit or the Nationals. Plus, Flatt actually beat Nagasu at the Worlds FS where Nagasu managed only 11th. All Mirai had to do was beating Laura Lepisto for the World Bronze but somehow, she failed to do that even after holding the lead in the SP.

    That's why anything Phil Hersh writes needs to be viewed with a grain of salt. After GP and right before the Nationals, Hersh and his friends were ready to hand the Olympic Silver medal to Rachael Flatt. He just seems to jump from place to place without any consistency, depending on what kind of pseudo-controversy he thinks he can dig up and make a story out of nothing.
    Thanks for your post. I read it and then Hersh. Rules are rules so I agree with you - sort of.
    I see nothing wrong with a columnist/blogger offering an opinion. The opinion expressed by Hersh here makes sense to me.

    If you beat me at a Natl competition but I then beat you at two bigger and more important Intl events that would seem noteworthy.

    Rules are rules and I like it when they are followed. I like when Natls appears to be judged fairly too.
    I like a tech panel that does not single out a skater considered too young and inexperienced for Olympic ice. I happened to enjoy it when this young skater proved them wrong and their favorite was shown to be lacking. What a reversal we saw from the opinions of the judges from Natls and the Olympics.

    You feel it is a big deal that Rachael beat Mirai in the Worlds LP?
    And what you point out about Mirai only having to beat Laura at Worlds is just as true for Rachael. Why single out Mirai for not beating Laura when we all know Rachael did not beat her either. We all know Mirai beat Rachael at Worlds so your point about the LP feels like a half truth to me.

    How about this more fair and accurate assessment: Mirai bombed her LP at Worlds yet still managed to finish ahead of Rachael. Now isn't that what happened and what matters as opposed to what you stated?

    I don't know what the difference in support is between the various funding levels. I don't think it matters as much to Mirai since she has become a rising star in the skating world and is earning money to help support her skating or other future plans.

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    By the rules she's not. He needs to just look at it like the rankings. It doesn't always tell the story of who's better. It happens in figureskating... it happens with tennis. In reality Mirai is very much on par/better than Rachel and if they both skated up to their potential Mirai wins.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    I do not see any reason why Hersh has to disparage one skater to build up another. He could just say, Mirai had a great year, the USFSA should have more flexible criteria so that Mirai could be placed in the top funding bracket as she deserves.

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    I like pie. Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Maybe he's trying out a new rivalry - kinda like how we had with Evan/Johnny, which started out as the Media's rivalry and they joined in... unfortunately. Maybe with a rivalry in the ladies more people will watch.

    not that I'm defending Hersh, I can't stand any of his op-eds.

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    Banned janetfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I do not see any reason why Hersh has to disparage one skater to build up another. He could just say, Mirai had a great year, the USFSA should have more flexible criteria so that Mirai could be placed in the top funding bracket as she deserves.
    You put that very well.
    I think Hersh, like many journalists sees his role as being something other than being as nice and diplomatic as possible.

    As much as posters here love to criticize him he is one of the few journalists in the USA who writes about skating.

    What was it about Jenny Kirk's writing that some of us liked so much?
    Was it because Jenny went out of her way to be as kind and diplomatic as possible?

    Would we discuss her blog if she had presented a more vanilla view of skating?
    I seriously doubt it.

    Many think Hersh goes too far and is often wrong. I would point out he is making a living and has been doing it for a long time now. Would we better off without Hesrh or any of the journalists who tend to take controversial positions?

    In the USA criticism is permissable and there are laws to protect against excessive statements. Are you suggesting a skater was slandered and could take Hersh to court over what hejust wrote about her?

    I don't think so - possibly in some Euro countries but not here.
    It is always an option to simply ignore a writer who bothers you. Your favorite is apparently not his favorite. Many might agree with you while others might not.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    The thrust of the article is that Rachael somehow deserves criticism because of a decision of the top brass at USFS. Rachael did not write the funding rules, nor did she steal any money from Mirai. Why is Rachael's name even in the headline of this piece? Why isn't the headline, "USFS's stupid rules deny top level funding to its best skater?"

    Your favorite is apparently not his favorite.
    Actually, she is. Mr. Hersh and I both love Michelle Kwan. (Although he regularly gets raked over the coals on the MK Forum when he doesn't praise her highly enough. )

    I would just like to know what Rachael did wrong to have become everybody's new whipping girl (now that Mira Leung has faded from the public spotlight.)

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    Phil is well aware of the envelope criteria; the point of his post, to me, came through loud and clear: he doesn't agree with U.S. Figure Skating's criteria, or he thinks an exception should have been made to boost Mirai to the top envelope. While his "unsolicited advice" to Rachael -- that if her international results don't improve this coming season, she should think about retiring from competition to enjoy college and pursue her academics --may seem harsh to some, I am sure it is well meant. In fact, it is likely unneccessary, as most any academically gifted skater and his/her parents would take a look at the competition vs. college situation on a season-by-season basis.

    One thing: although Emily Hughes did interrupt her schooling to train and compete at nationals, I understand she returned to Cambridge this semester, will take additional credits this summer and may graduate with her class, so there was relatively little disruption in her college experience.

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    Banned janetfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    The thrust of the article is that Rachael somehow deserves criticism because of a decision of the top brass at USFS. Rachael did not write the funding rules, nor did she steal any money from Mirai. Why is Rachael's name even in the headline of this piece? Why isn't the headline, "USFS's stupid rules deny top level funding to its best skater?"



    Actually, she is. Mr. Hersh and I both love Michelle Kwan. (Although he regularly gets raked over the coals on the MK Forum when he doesn't praise her highly enough. )

    I would just like to know what Rachael did wrong to have become everybody's new whipping girl (now that Mira Leung has faded from the public spotlight.)
    Rachael seems to be admired by the majority of posters here. Many are interested in her academic career and typically agree she is a very consistent skater.

    Last season Alissa was raked over the coals much worse than Rachael has been. It seemed Alissa and her US title disappointed many here by finishing 11th at Worlds and not helping to get back the third spot. Many thought Alissa did not deserve the US title last season and perhaps that helped fuel some of the disappointment in her.

    This season we have a new US champion. She finished 9th at Worlds and did not help us get back the third spot. Many also felt she did not deserve the title.

    Is this a pattern? Each year now we seem to have a new Ladies champion. Some of the results have been a little controversial.

    Alissa took heat and now it is the turn of the latest pretender to the throne.

    What many fans will admit is that Rachael did not choke. She skated very well at the Olympics and Worlds - close to her best. I think too many fans have come to the conclusion that Rachael, even skating her best is just too far from being a world class skater.

    Mirai's fans feel a little differently although that doesn't mean Mirai WILL DO IT. But atleast Mirai, with her best skates rises to a level the international judges simply feel is better than Rachael.

    Hersh apparently feels that way too- and funding Rachael a bit more than Mira seems like shooting yourself in the foot. There will be a big bang but not necessarily the desired results.

    For sure it could all change again next year. Maybe it will be Ashley's turn to wear the crown. And if Ashley does not finish on the Worlds podium or close enough to help get back the third spot - fans here will be taking shots at her and perhaps proclaiming Christina Gao as the next hope for USA Ladies.

    The Kween may have left her throne - but she still casts a long shadow over those who attempt to follow her. 9th place at Worlds and 7th place at the Olympics falls far short of the legacy of US Ladies.
    Last edited by janetfan; 05-11-2010 at 01:45 PM.

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nylynnr View Post
    Phil is well aware of the envelope criteria; the point of his post, to me, came through loud and clear: he doesn't agree with U.S. Figure Skating's criteria, or he thinks an exception should have been made to boost Mirai to the top envelope.
    That was kind of my point. I note that in your explanation of the "loud and clear point" of Hersh's post, you did not mention the name "Rachael."

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    if you look at the breakdown in the link above, you would think the USFS should have added Mirai's name on level with Rachael's, withl Ashley's on B tier 1. They did not give Evan a solo spot in A1, He shares the no.1 spot with Jeremy Abbott.

    Do they think Sasha will try another Nationals? Bt w, will Sasha get the money allotted to her or is that given out just for expenses? I dunno.

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