You know, it seems this forum has become either “Chan is a god” or Chan is evil”, and I’m bored with both extremes so I've been staying on the sidelines. But there have been some really unpleasant insinuations here, and enough is enough.
Patrick Chan speaks honestly and says what I imagine he considers to be the truth. He also speaks inappropriately at times. There was the “you lose respect for doing Bielmanns” stuff a couple of months ago (Yuzuru Hanyu can do a Bielmann, an Ina Bauer, and has an awesome 3A and quad). He most certainly spoke inappropriately about Plushenko, and about Weir after the Olympics. He criticized Dai’s decision not to try quads in the SP - before attempting any himself in international competition. Has Patrick ever torn his ACL, and dealt with that sort of rehab and comeback? That Dai is still skating at an elite level is amazing and worthy of respect. Let’s hope that nobody else will have to go through what he did. And finally, Chan certainly called Brian Joubert a complainer, a sore loser, said that he didn’t like him, and made fun of his skating in 2009, all of it for no good reason. Jeffrey Buttle shouldn't be used to excuse it. I don’t think Jeff, a bright and articulate man who made his views clear in 2008, needed anyone to speak for him - certainly not a year after the fact and in such a manner. And no, I will not waste my weekend looking up specific quotes. Google works for everyone.
As an aside, Joubert has always said that more skaters should do quads and that the system should reward those who try (and land) them. He said it in 2008 when he came in second and in 2007 when he won. I’ll even give a reference for the latter: the GS event summary. And he walks his talk, too, by always attempting quads himself: dozens of them in what is now a very long career, through quite a few injuries – including this season, though he probably needs knee surgery and has had other health problems. But since Joubert and Chan seem to have left all that unpleasantness in the past, I guess it would be best for fans to do so as well.
I don’t mind Patrick Chan speaking his mind just like I don’t mind Johnny Weir or Brian Joubert speaking their minds, or anyone else, for that matter. I think many of their comments are fair and of interest to those involved in the sport, actively or as spectators. Skaters have a greater stake in what happens than we do, and have every right to share their opinions and thoughts. It's all a matter of how you express yourself.
I do mind it when people criticize other skaters’ behavior and skating while making out their favorites to be perfect in every way, justified in every comment, the standard to which all must aspire, etc. etc. Is Patrick Chan the only good skater in the world? The only one who can do a good quad/has landed 2 quads in a program? The only one who’s ever gotten level 4 on a step sequence? The only one other skaters can and should look up to? The one who speaks the honest truth while others whine and beg their federations to help change the rules for them alone? This is ridiculous. And as to the last, the changes that were made were technical committee proposals, not federation ones.
I will add that it's probably easier to skate well and up the ante technically when you're young and your body hasn't been banged up by a decade or so of elite level skating: think of Plushenko, Stephane, or Carolina Kostner, and the effect health issues have had on their skating. Finally, re the articles linked at the beginning of this thread, which are nominally the topic of discussion here - I don’t see anything remotely contentious about anything that was said, though it would have been a nice touch to list the European champion among the contenders.
I’m off to lurk again. IP, your posts are as always interesting to read, even when I don’t agree with you; I’m sorry I don’t get to discuss skating with you more often (alas, this season is just too dull). Seniorita, I’m waiting for pix!