I was not making a blanket declaration that all Zakrajsek skaters share all the same weaknesses. Re Abbott, he did not always train with Zakrajsek and has had ice dance training to boot (you knew that, though, didn't you, Doris?). I like Bradley and fully acknowledge that his interpretation skills are far better than most of Tom's students. Re Dornbush, that's news to me. I thought that he'd been with Tammy Gambill for 13 of his 19 years?
Dornbush is not a Tom Z skater; he trains with Tammy Gambill and has for a long time.
I like Agnes, a lot. I just don't think she is being packaged right and won't be under her current team if their previous skaters are any example.
Scott and Sandra are just inept commentators, to be honest. One of them called Caroline Zhang's 3F "HUGE" and who can forget Scott thinking that Yagudin would lose the LP to Goebel in SLC? Agnes has great jumps and a fabulous layback, but her skating skills and speed DO need work. As for the edge calls in US Nationals....Ashley Wagner didn't get one in her SP. Nuff said.
Last edited by oleada; 02-06-2011 at 09:20 PM.
Have you seen Agnes live in order to actually compare her with other top skaters? How exactly would you change the packaging of Agnes? And what skating skills does she need to improve on to compete with the top?
Frankly I think her musicality and lines are quite good. She is not a baby ballerina, however. Speed looks okay, but I haven't seen her live yet. I actually think her long program costume is quite nice, although I am not crazy about the short program one.
In contrast, everyone who has seen Sotnikova live has been impressed with her speed, stroking, and ice coverage. And Adelina is 2 years younger.
And as for Scott/Sandra they said at one point that Zhang had it all. Agnes I think has some of the most talent of all the US girls and I think there's more than enough time to get her the improvement she needs but really a coaching change is in order.
I am not doubting that Sotnikova is very good. And she probably will win Junior Worlds. But does Agnes have a chance? I think she does. Funny, talking about Zhang as a Junior, I never thought she would be a top senior skater because of all her technical problems. I saw her as having great spins and that was about it. She was certainly cute. Out of the two, Zhang and Nagasu, I thought Nagasu had the edge. I thought the same with Kim and Asada. Mao also had many technique issues with her jumps and Kim did not. Therefore, I thought Kim was better. I do think that Agnes has many fine qualities. Can she improve? Ofcourse she can, and I hope she does. I am glad she is a different skater, not a baby ballerina. What coach do you think can improve all what you call her deficiencies?
Last edited by cjsk8fan; 02-07-2011 at 09:02 AM.
I vote for Dody Teachman, if still coaching. Dody was the one coach that really pushed Harding when she was in her GOOD state and tried to package Tonya like a lady with power.
If not Dody, I vote for Rafael.
I am a huge fan of Agnes but I was actually hoping she would stay out of the top two at Nationals this year because I wanted her to have another trip to Junior worlds. I don't think there is any reason to rush Agnes and Christina to senior worlds because the skaters who will be their prime competition in Sochi are they young Russian ladies. Obviously nobody knows how long the elite skaters will stay in the game, but let's just say that at this stage, Agnes and Christina don't need to worry much about Miki Ando, they need to focus on Adelina Sotnikova and by taking another shot at junior Worlds this year, they'll get to do just that.
I definitely wouldnt count out either Yu Na Kim or Mao Asada for 2014. In fact there is nothing yet to me that indicates Sotnikova will be over both of them by then. I expect this will be Miki Ando's last season though. I am sure she knows she is doing well this season only since it is a soft post Olympic year and if she wins a medal at Worlds (even a bronze) she will for sure go on that note. No way she stays competitive until Sochi.
I think of the top ladies from the last Olympic cycle, Asada, Kim, and Nagasu will certainly try to stay in for Sochi. Murakami just came up from the Junior level, as did Gao and Zawadzki and they will certainly hope to be threats by 2014. Theoretically, if she continues on the path of this season, Czisny could stay in though at 26, an Olympic medal would be a tough goal. Most of the European ladies are on again off again and best, and they are getting up there in years as well. Obviously Russia has high hopes for their young juniors ladies but we have no idea how they will do once they make the move to senior level and/or if they will stay injury free. If they do make the move successfully, it will be great to see a strong battle in the 2014 Olympics between Asia, Russia, and the US, along with anybody else who may surface in the next three years.