Like Jason Dangeon mentioned today, "90% of the result is in-between the 6 inches - between ears."
Not trying to be funny but if you go back far enough, we can also list Nancy Kerrigan in 1994 as one of those exception cases as well - someone who didn't compete nor medal at the Nationals. And Kerrigan wasn't even a World Medalist in 1993 as she placed only 5th - the exact same ranking that Jeremy Abbott currently holds, which in turned caused the U.S. to have only 2 spots for the Lillehammer Olympics.
Although in Kimmie's case she had been struggling for a while and worlds were no different.
Although, I think she actually had a decent GP series.
If Mirai and Rachael had been elligible, I bet there would have be a whole lot people saying oh, send Kimmie, Mirai and Rachael have no senior international experience, we'll lose our spots, Kimmie has the best international track record, the U.S. would be so stupid not to send Kimmie, it was an unlucky night for Kimmie, blah blah blah, etc, etc.
I don't know how anyone can really compare Michelle/Nancy's case to Jeremy's. MIchelle and Nancy both had extremely strong international results
(Nancy was skating extremely well that season to and clearly fixed her long program issues). Both made their case based on injury, not because they bombed Nationals.
To compare Jeremy to Michelle Kwan and Nancy Kerrigan, to people who had stood on World and Olympic podiums is ridiculous.
The thing is it not like Jeremy can argue that his skate was some kind of fluke. Can he argue that it was his worst long of the season? I'd argue that his skate at Cup of Russia was worse. Jeremy bombing a major competition is hardly a surprising thing, and so why should others have to to step aside for him. Abbott's best finish at worlds was hardly due to great skating on his part. But a huge part was due to the fact that it was a post Olympic year. Others skated poorly (Kozuka Oda were more than capable of beating that skate from Abbott ) Its not like Abbott has done a whole lot to inspire the USFSAS confidence that he's a skater they could rely on to secure the spots.
IF we were talking about a skater like Brian Joubert who had a horrible OLympics, but who has a strong record of making world and European podiums, than I could understand the USFSA putting aside one competition. If we are talking about ASada who is a late season skater, I can understand putting one bad skater. But Abbott is consistently inconsistent. And has a reputation of bombing at the most pressure filled moments.
Last edited by bekalc; 01-30-2011 at 11:58 PM.
Here's my theory on why even though the USFS has an established process for world team selection with US nationals as a qualifier, they don't publish it or make it clear to the general public, and they put up some supposed committee for team selection:
I know the team selection committee for the Olympics is a really an end run around turning US nationals into an Olympics qualifier (thus putting it and its profits... such as it is... under IOC control). The same isn't true of worlds as far as I know. However, if the USFS outright publishes in detail how nationals is a qualifier for worlds, the IOC could merrily sue the USFS by pointing out that their selection process for worlds and Olympics are identical. And if the USFS admits to using nationals as qualifier for the former then it is also a qualifier for the latter. The USFS sees no reason to risk its money (such as it is) and keeps the process opaque thus frustrating followers of the sport.
I blame the IOC.
Last edited by bigsisjiejie; 01-31-2011 at 12:32 AM.
On the question of "one lucky/unlucky performance at Nationals" -- I notice that athletes themselves never talk about luck.
In basketball there is an expression, "ball don't lie."
At the NBA level, the attitude of the players is. if I shoot the ball correctly it will go in. If it rims out, that is prima fascia evidence that I did not shoot it correctly.
In skating, if I state badly on a day when my opponent skates well -- then I skated badly and my opponent skated well. I never hear grumblings of "luck" after a skating contest from the actual competitors.
Last edited by Mathman; 01-31-2011 at 10:26 AM.
And English football player (don't remember the name) scored this insane goal at the World Cup (in 1990, I think), and when asked about if it was just luck, he responded: "The harder I train, the luckier I get."
Otherwise, I think the policy is what it has always been. Top placements at nationals go to worlds...except that the USFSA reserves the right to make a different selection under unusaual and unforeseen circumstances.