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Thread: U.S. Ladies Prediction & Speculation Thread

  1. #46
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    ^ I'm beginning to get concerned about Nagasu's consistency, though. She also seems injury-prone which does not bode well...
    Last edited by R.D.; 09-04-2010 at 11:06 AM.

  2. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Layfan View Post
    Well, it's true. With Alissa, she's never really given the international judges a chance to show how they would place her when she performs her best. I think Alissa would do well against Laura Lepisto or Akiko or whoever else out there who isn't Mao or Yuna. But we don't really know because she has always messed up at worlds.
    You can sort of see with her SC performances that she would be well-received but it's not much to go on.

    And to go back to my point earlier in the thread, it's possible that Alissa will be held back even she doesn't falter, if she doesn't step up her difficulty. She could suffer from the Johnny Weir fate - she could pull off awesome, clean, crowd-pleasing performances and still not place as high as she would like because the difficulty isn't there.
    But that depends much on what the other girls do. Really, only Yuna and Mao have hugely more difficult content than Alissa. Other girls have more difficult jump combinations than Alissa, like Miki and Rachael. But Alissa can still potentially hold those girls off because the other parts of her skating are vastly superior. But if skaters like Mirai, who match or outdo Alissa on spins and spirals and footwork, get 3-3s under their belts, Alissa could really struggle to stay near the top.
    The thing with Alissa is, even though she's medaled at SC a lot, she's always had issues in one of her programs. In 2005 she had a clean SP and LP, but that was the last time I can remember when she skated great in both programs. I mean last year at SC, her SP was great but then she had 2 falls and 3 URs in the FS so only completed 3 clean triples. In 08, her FS was really good, but her SP wasn't clean. At 09 nationals her SP was clean and beautiful, but she fell once in her FS and doubled 2 intended triple jumps and only completed 3 triples in that segment. At 09 Worlds her SP was a mess, and while her FS was pretty good for her, it still only had 3 ratified triples. At 07 nats she won the FS but was only 3rd because she popped her lutz in the SP, then at Worlds her SP was a disaster and she was better in the FS, but downgrades and a fall kept her scores down in that segment as well.

    If Alissa wants to get onto the World team this year she needs 2 clean programs at nationals, or at the very least a clean SP and a FS with at least 5 ratified triples, preferably 6 or 7. Further, this shouldn't be a fluke. If she's doing her usual 3 triple mediocrity in her FS at her Grand Prix events and then has the SOHL at nationals (especially if this means only 5 triples), I'd still be hesitant to send her to Worlds just considering her history of melting under pressure. I know Lepisto gets huge scores with 3 triples but Czisny isn't competing in Europe and Lepisto lucks out in that she is the best European lady at the moment and resultantly gets huge PCS. If Czisny is landing 5+ triples in her FS at her GPs and is skating clean SPs and does the same at nationals, then she has a decent shot at Worlds, unless others skate even better at nationals.

  3. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Layfan View Post
    Kind of the point I was trying to make above, but much more succinct There are really very few girl who have a 3z-3t or a 3f-3t AND have the overall quality to match a skater like Alissa. Last year, it was really only Mao and Yuna and, of course, that made them unbeatable unless they beat themselves. (Well, Mao had a 3a, not a 3-3 but u get the point) Mirai could become like that but she's got work to do.

    I think one of the things I love most about Allissa' skating is that it's never frantic or labored. Her footwork sequences and choreography looks calm and deliberate, not like she trying to throw in steps to meet COP requirements. You sort of forget you are watching a competition or a COP program. It's a peformance art. It's so rare. Aside from Alissa, only Kim Yuna did that for me last year, and Mirai to a lesser extent.
    I think Laura is a lovely skater. Last year she did put in a 3x3 - but did it possibly cause her to lose consistency on her other jumps? I think I would enjoy Laura even more with a 3x2 if her other triples were more consistent.

    Sorry RD - back to American Ladies

    Who knows how Alissa will do training with Yuka? A change seems like a good idea and my feelings towards Alissa never change too much. I think she is a wonderful skater and like Sasha she brings something special and elegant to her performances. They can't all be champions and I am happy Alissa is coming back. A skater doesn't have to win Olympic medals for me to be their fan.
    Last edited by janetfan; 09-04-2010 at 10:51 AM.

  4. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by janetfan View Post
    I think Laura is a lovely skater. Last year she did put in a 3x3 - but did it possibly cause her to lose consistency on her other jumps? I think I would enjoy Laura even more with a 3x2 if her other triples were more consistent.

    Sorry RD - back to American Ladies

    Who knows how Alissa will do training with Yuka? A change seems like a good idea and my feelings towards Alissa never change too much. I think she is a wonderful skater and like Sasha she brings something special and elegant to her performances. They can't all be champions and I am happy Alissa is coming back. A skater doesn't have to win Olympic medals for me to be their fan.
    I like Laura too, but I'm just saying I think Alissa easily matches her ... ^ exactly the way I feel about Alissa, but I do hope she has a good season.

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    Alissa would likely fair better if she was skating for a European country instead of the US. She could likely be a top European lady and that would likely boost her PCS so that they would be at the level of the very top international competitors.

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverlake22 View Post
    Alissa would likely fair better if she was skating for a European country instead of the US. She could likely be a top European lady and that would likely boost her PCS so that they would be at the level of the very top international competitors.
    Interesting theory, but I don't know... I suppose Alissa might have been pretty competitive at Euros b/c of the general mediocrity of European women these days. But then, you could say that about any of the other top U.S. ladies. Maybe you could say that the other way around too, with how the Euro ladies would have fared at U.S. nationals. In both regions, the ladies are sort at the doldrums, far out-shined by the Asians.

    I don't think Alissa's skating is underappreciated in the U.S. or that it would somehow be better appreciated in Europe. Is Alissa's problem really PCs? Alissa's problem, as you noted in the earlier post, is simply that she cannot stay in her feet. When she does, she is superior in a lot of ways to the other American girls. I think U.S. skating knows that but they can't reward a skater who keeps doing only three triples in a performance. Alissa does extremely well in the U.S. in the rare instances that she is clean.
    Last edited by Layfan; 09-04-2010 at 12:00 PM.

  7. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Layfan View Post
    Interesting theory, but I don't know... I suppose Alissa might have been pretty competitive at Euros b/c of the general mediocrity of European women these days. But then, you could say that about any of the other top U.S. ladies. Maybe you could say that the other way around too, with how the Euro ladies would have fared at U.S. nationals. In both regions, the ladies are sort at the doldrums, far out-shined by the Asians.

    I don't think Alissa's skating is underappreciated in the U.S. or that it would somehow be better appreciated in Europe. Is Alissa's problem really PCs? Alissa's problem, as you noted in the earlier post, is simply that she cannot stay in her feet. When she does, she is superior in a lot of ways to the other American girls. I think U.S. skating knows that but they can't reward a skater who keeps doing only three triples in a performance. Alissa does extremely well in the U.S. in the rare instances that she is clean.
    Forget Europe! Alissa was born to be a Canadian, eh.

    She always seems to skate well there and imagine her scores if she had ever skated at a Canadian nationals. 200+ easily
    Last edited by janetfan; 09-04-2010 at 12:15 PM.

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by janetfan View Post
    Forget Europe! Alissa was born to be a Canadian, eh.

    She always seems to skate well there and imagine her scores if she had ever skated at a Canadian nationals. 200+ easily
    There you go.

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    Quote Originally Posted by janetfan View Post
    Frank knows what the deal is and his goal will be to have Mirai peaking at Natls and not a GP event in Oct or Nov.
    Hopefully Mirai is skating well enough at the Nationals to be selected for the World team, but peaking at Worlds....

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    Alyssa has had the same coach for many years. I was kind of surprised to hear about her coaching change after the Olympic season because I had the impression she would retire. It sounds like she actively wants to improve her skating and consistency. Now, her new coach cannot simply wave a magic stick and go "Voila! You are now consistent." It must be remembered that Czisny was really on an upward trend all the way up to the Nationals. I think she was fairly well-prepared, but fell victim to her nerves, as usual.

    I think she should look to other skaters to pick up US skating.

    Hopefully Mirai is skating well enough at the Nationals to be selected for the World team, but peaking at Worlds....
    Bingo.
    Last edited by R.D.; 09-04-2010 at 01:02 PM.

  11. #56
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    Well, that's kind of how it went for Mirai last year. She peaked at the Olympics. Then she didn't do so well at worlds but still, she basically improved and improved all season and peaked when it mattered. fingers cross for this season.

  12. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jaana View Post
    Hopefully Mirai is skating well enough at the Nationals to be selected for the World team, but peaking at Worlds....
    Yes, of course. But remember, Mirai wil not be at Worlds without skating her best at Natls. If she is not peaking at Natls there are others who can beat her. She carried her strong Natls performance to the Olympics and even showed a stellar SP at Worlds. And Olympic years are more difficult because they are longer and there is more pressure.

    I get surprised at times when posters make the GP events more important than they are. Mirai can bomb both of her GP events for whatever reasons and still make the Natl team. But if she bombs at Natls she will not be at worlds. She will have to skate very well, at peak level to beat Ashley, Rachael, Alissa, Christina and Caroline. Not to mention newcomer and Jr Worlds Silver medalist Agnes and a few others.

    Natls will be no walk in the park for Mirai or any of the others. That's just the way it is at larger federations.
    Mirai might be the best USA Lady right now - but her "B" game will not earn her a ticket to Worlds.
    Last edited by janetfan; 09-04-2010 at 01:53 PM.

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by janetfan View Post
    Yes, of course. But remember, Mirai wil not be at Worlds without skating her best at Natls. If she is not peaking at Natls there are others who can beat her. She carried her strong Natls performance to the Olympics and even showed a stellar SP at Worlds. And Olympic years are more difficult because they are longer and there is more pressure.

    I get surprised at times when posters make the GP events more important than they are. Mirai can bomb both of her GP events for whatever reasons and still make the Natl team. But if she bombs at Natls she will not be at worlds. She will have to skate very well, at peak level to beat Ashley, Rachael, Alissa, Christina and Caroline. Not to mention newcomer and Jr Worlds Silver medalist Agnes and a few others.

    Natls will be no walk in the park for Mirai or any of the others. That's just the way it is at larger federations.
    Mirai might be the best USA Lady right now - but her "B" game will not earn her a ticket to Worlds.
    Not neccessarily, as some of those girls may do very poorly at nationals this season. I mean, who expected Czisny and Zhang to finish 10th and 11th, and get beaten by the likes of Emily Hughes, Alexe Gilles, Bebe Liang, Amanda Dobbs, Christina Gao, and a very lackluster Sasha Cohen? No one I bet. The same thing could happen this year, and if enough people mess up then Mirai could likely make the world team by merely skating pretty well.

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    Ever since Sarah Hughes left (one of my all-time favorites, along with Sonja Henie, Oksana Baiul, Elvis Stojko, and Evgeni Plushenko), I've really not had anyone to get that enthused about, be it an American or not. But I have to be honest, all the new changes in the system after the 2006 Olympics also caused a loss of interest, yet I somehow managed to watch US Nationals every year.

    And I'm glad when the Americans do well, like the women did at 2008 US Nationals (one of my all-time favorite Nationals ever btw), as well as the men this past year, etc. But no one has yet captured my heart like Sarah, Sonja, Oksana, Elvis, and Evgeni have. With them, I was there from the very beginning, love at first sight as regards their skating. But since then, there have been lots & lots of skaters that I am a fan of, some moreso than others, but no one really stands out for me except Mao Asada. But even my fandom of Mao Asada hasn't made me watch the GPs, et al, every year since the 2006 Olympics.

    I'm hoping my renewed interest in skating this past year with the advent of Zhenya's return also translates to watching skating that transports me to Sarah/Sonja/Oksana/Elvis/Evgeni heights, no matter whence it comes from, American or not.

    That said, as far as Americans go, I'm looking forward to seeing Jeremy Abbott (his "Beatles" program this past year *did* send me into raptures!), Adam Rippon (shades of John Curry), Ashley Wagner (lovely, lovely, lovely), Rachael Flatt (hard worker with charm), Caroline Zhang (her presentation is exquisite), and Mirai Nagasu (if fully healed from her stress fracture, I predict her to win Worlds). And I'm also interested to see if any newcomer captures my attention, be it jumps or presentation, or in an ideal situation both.

    I have to be honest though and say I am disappointed that no American female has appeared that can do a 3A (shades of Tonya Harding's rousing skating from the old days). We used to be such a force in women's skating, always blazing the path for everyone else to follow (both technical & presentation), and now for the first time in history not one American female medalled at this past Olympics. I'm hoping we catch up with the rest of the world, especially when it comes to the technical aspect. I do have "hope". (:^)

  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by silverlake22 View Post
    Not neccessarily, as some of those girls may do very poorly at nationals this season. I mean, who expected Czisny and Zhang to finish 10th and 11th, and get beaten by the likes of Emily Hughes, Alexe Gilles, Bebe Liang, Amanda Dobbs, Christina Gao, and a very lackluster Sasha Cohen? No one I bet. The same thing could happen this year, and if enough people mess up then Mirai could likely make the world team by merely skating pretty well.
    True....but by the same token there are enough girls that the odds are that one could have a "skate of her life," and atleast one other could skate very well. I believe that is all it would take for a Mirai not quite at her best to miss making the Nat team this season.

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