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Thread: Should Flatt have skated at the World Championships on an injury?

  1. #166
    Quote Originally Posted by Serious Business View Post
    This really needs to be pointed out: Winning that third spot isn't just for the team, it's for yourself, too. If Rachael wins bronze at next year's US Championships, and the team selection rules remain unchanged, she'd lose out on the chance to go to worlds because her suboptimal results at this worlds didn't get that last spot. And this has come up before. In 2006, Johnny Weir helped secure 3 spots for the US mens by coming in at 7th (which together with Lysacek's 3rd place got the US 3 spots in mens). In 2007, Weir came in third at the US championships and got to go to worlds, partly thanks to himself! Or in another case, if Mirai had finished third or higher at 2010 Worlds, the US would have 3 spots and she'd have been in Moscow.

    Rachael is a smart person by all accounts. She knows that the US having 3 spots sets up a much wider target for her to hit if she wants to go to worlds again. For all the people who thinks Rachael threw this competition or didn't take its results seriously enough, this is yet another reason they're wrong. Even if we are to assume Rachael is a purely selfish person with no regard for what chances her fellow US skaters have (which I find very unlikely), there is still great incentive for her to ensure that the US gets 3 spots at this worlds. If Rachael was truly injured to the point where she was unable to skate and she knew it, she had very good reason to relinquish her spot and let the alternate go!
    This is without a doubt the most intelligent response I've seen on these boards in months. Thank you.

  2. #167
    she takes the audience on her journey of emotions Layfan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Serious Business View Post
    This really needs to be pointed out: Winning that third spot isn't just for the team, it's for yourself, too. If Rachael wins bronze at next year's US Championships, and the team selection rules remain unchanged, she'd lose out on the chance to go to worlds because her suboptimal results at this worlds didn't get that last spot. And this has come up before. In 2006, Johnny Weir helped secure 3 spots for the US mens by coming in at 7th (which together with Lysacek's 3rd place got the US 3 spots in mens). In 2007, Weir came in third at the US championships and got to go to worlds, partly thanks to himself! Or in another case, if Mirai had finished third or higher at 2010 Worlds, the US would have 3 spots and she'd have been in Moscow.

    Rachael is a smart person by all accounts. She knows that the US having 3 spots sets up a much wider target for her to hit if she wants to go to worlds again. For all the people who thinks Rachael threw this competition or didn't take its results seriously enough, this is yet another reason they're wrong. Even if we are to assume Rachael is a purely selfish person with no regard for what chances her fellow US skaters have (which I find very unlikely), there is still great incentive for her to ensure that the US gets 3 spots at this worlds. If Rachael was truly injured to the point where she was unable to skate and she knew it, she had very good reason to relinquish her spot and let the alternate go!
    Fair enough points. Regaining the third spot is also a potential personal accomplishment though. I don't know if Rachael ever said anything about it but Alissa and Ashley both mentioned that one of their goals was being part of the team that regains the third spot. From that perspective, I suppose Rachael thought she could do it this year and wanted a go at it. But she was wrong.

  3. #168
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by seniorita View Post
    Skating fans must be the biggest drama queens of universe, in Greece to express this we say we take a hair and try to split it (i think in english they say sth like this also?)
    yes we have the expression as well "It's like splitting hairs"

  4. #169
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    If she retires, most fans will remember her as a very hard working, determined competitor, who sadly probably did not live up to her potential. I will definitely remember her outstanding skates when she was a junior and how promising she looked out there.
    Actually, I think she DID reach her potential...many times. Quite frankly, she was unfortunate to come up in a time where there were several skaters at the top that were more talented than her. Perhaps in another era she would have gotten at least 1 or 2 world medals.

  5. #170
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    I don't mind the three spots and there is NO guarantee Mirai or anyone else would have skated well enough to get them.

    But I do mind NOT giving it our best shot.
    Agreed. That's really what it is all about. Last year I didn't really have any issues because Nagasu/Flatt WAS the best team we had. It's unfortunate that Nagasu tanked like she did, but Wagner (or Cohen, or any of the other alternates) wouldn't have done any better.

    2009- I won't rehash that again, but I don't think it was our strongest team possible at the time.

    This year, I think Czisny and HEALTHY Flatt had a good shot at 3 spots, so no issues with the actual team at 100%. No guarantee Nagasu would have done better, especially given her showing last year.

    But when Flatt was injured, she was no longer our best shot. That's the underlying issue here that I hope USFS looks into

  6. #171
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    For those attempting to compare Rachel's attempt to compete at Worlds w/other more well known instances, allow me to *try* and bring a few facts into this...

    1. A Toe stress fracture and a Fibula stress fracture are two very different things. The bone in Rachel's where the stress fracture is, is one of the most important ones in the Human Body. It's also the one that takes the most weight bearing stress. Knowing what Skaters put their bodies through, factor in that stress to the bone by a factor of 100.

    2. I clearly remember w/Evan and w/Ryan last year that while the injury had been disclosed, they'd also disclosed that they had Medical Clearance to compete because it would not do further damage to the original injury. For those who think Rachel skating on a stress fracture to the fibula/major leg bone was a good thing, I'm just shaking my head over.

    3. We and Rachel are incredably lucky that all that happened last week were those poor skates. Not only was this stress fracture in one of the worst bones a skater could ask for, it was also a stress fracture to the major leg bone in her Take off leg for Toe Jumps and Landing leg for all jumps. I don't know about the rest of you, but the idea of watching someone suddenly crumple to the ice screaming because her leg had snapped, is *not* on my list of things I most want to see. Ever.

    4. I have to laugh at those calling Frank a bully. God forbid anyone is told the truth these days. I was glad he gave it to Mirai w/both barrels at Nationals. She needed a wake up call. Not someone sugarcoating what had happened and, in turn, inflating her ego. Frank's tough and no nonsense, but he also tends to bring out the best in his skaters in part because of that. It doesn't mean he's not caring. I don't blame him for calling out Tom Z and so he should!! I actually think Frank's ticked for two reasons.

    The first not informing anyone who needed to know that Rachel's injury was *that* serious and that Mirai might have to head to Moscow. We all get that one. However, I also think part of it is Frank's disgust of a "fellow Coach's" treatment and total disregard for the Health and Well Being of one of their Students. As I've said above, this is a far more serious injury than any of the other instances mentioned in the past and the worst truly could have happened last week in Moscow. That goes against everything the Coaching Ranks are supposed to be and if my instincts are right on that one, I also don't blame Frank for saying what he did and glad someone did.

    And on that note...I'm outta here.

  7. #172
    skating philosopher Mrs. P's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tigger View Post
    4. I have to laugh at those calling Frank a bully. God forbid anyone is told the truth these days. I was glad he gave it to Mirai w/both barrels at Nationals. She needed a wake up call. Not someone sugarcoating what had happened and, in turn, inflating her ego. Frank's tough and no nonsense, but he also tends to bring out the best in his skaters in part because of that. It doesn't mean he's not caring. I don't blame him for calling out Tom Z and so he should!! I actually think Frank's ticked for two reasons.

    The first not informing anyone who needed to know that Rachel's injury was *that* serious and that Mirai might have to head to Moscow. We all get that one. However, I also think part of it is Frank's disgust of a "fellow Coach's" treatment and total disregard for the Health and Well Being of one of their Students. As I've said above, this is a far more serious injury than any of the other instances mentioned in the past and the worst truly could have happened last week in Moscow. That goes against everything the Coaching Ranks are supposed to be and if my instincts are right on that one, I also don't blame Frank for saying what he did and glad someone did.

    And on that note...I'm outta here.
    Your points are thoughtful and I don't take issue with the other points. I don't agree with this one because my issue with Frank's response was not that he was being harsh. I didn't really have a problem that he called Mirai out (except, again that he did it in a public sphere). I get the truth hurts sometimes. But I feel his intention behind his comments were not right. It was clear to me that he was doing it to psych Team Rachel out. He has done this in the past with other competitors (see post-Nationals in 2010 when Jeremy beat Evan). I think he was coming from really arrogant place, not a "I'm a fellow coach and I think it's uncool what you're doing to your pupil" place. If he was coming from the latter, there would have been no need to make comments about how Mirai kicked Rachel's and Alissa's butt at 4CC. (Especially since well, it's in the record books).

    Let's go back to Frank's remarks again:

    I asked Carroll Monday by telephone if Nagasu would have been ready to skate had she been told she was going April 22 -- the day Flatt said learned she had a stress fracture in the right leg. That was three days before Flatt left for Moscow and a week before the women's event began at worlds.

    ``Of course,'' Carroll said. ``Mirai is in great shape - better than she has been her whole life. She took the responsibility of being ready as the alternate very seriously.

    ``This cost us three spots.''

    ``She blew those other American girls (Flatt and Czisny) out of the water at Four Continents,'' he said.

    ``She has moved on from that,'' he said. ``She was doing triple axels and triple lutz - triple loop in practice. She was ready to go.''

    Carroll, who coached Evan Lysacek to the 2010 Olympic title and Michelle Kwan to four of her five world titles, said he intended to ask U.S. Figure Skating for explanations about the situation. What upset him most was not getting a heads-up that Flatt's condition might mean Nagasu would go to Moscow.

    ``When Michelle was hurt before the (2006 Turin) Olympics, they called Emily Hughes and told her that Michelle was going to try but Emily should be ready to leave,'' Carroll said.

    Nine days before the women's competition began, Kwan withdrew after one practice in Turin. Hughes, who flew in from the United States four days before the short program, wound up a more-than-respectable 7th.
    He spends most of the conversation basically saying how Mirai would've gotten three spots. It's only at the end that he calls out Tom Z. And briefly.

    Again, he could've have simply said. "Yes Mirai would have been ready for Worlds, she's done well at practices and has been doing triple-triple combination. I wish Tom would have been more prompt about Rachel's injury."

    No, instead he obviously pontificated to Mr. Hirsch way more than he needed to.

    That said, I respect Frank as a coach -- clearly he's a good coach otherwise he wouldn't have the awesome track record -- but that does not mean he has the right to be a jerk.
    Last edited by Mrs. P; 05-05-2011 at 12:14 AM.

  8. #173
    can't come down to Earth prettykeys's Avatar
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    1) I think Rachael/Team Flatt should have told Mirai and Frank to be ready, just in case. This has nothing to do with "individual vs. team mentality" - it's just being responsible.

    2) If Rachael Flatt still had reason to believe she could do decently (and I'm assuming that she did) - it's her right to claim her spot at Worlds since she earned it at Nationals, even if injured. I much prefer Mirai too, but it'd be wrong to simply boot her off because she's not in top form. Obviously there has to be a line (if Rachael couldn't skate or jump at all, then she should not skate) but it looked like she was still able to land some jumps. Maybe Rachael did better at practices than what we actually saw.

  9. #174
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    Quote Originally Posted by prettykeys View Post
    I much prefer Mirai too, but it'd be wrong to simply boot [Rachel] off because she's not in top form.
    Perhaps if she was NOT injured but was simply struggling. That's different. JMO

  10. #175
    Rejoicing in the land of Kwan kwanatic's Avatar
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    I'm wondering if we're going to hear anything else about this matter? Whether they do something or not, the USFSA look like a bunch of suckers.

    If they admit that Rachael skated injured without informing them then that means they dropped the ball. People often frown at some of the micromanaging that goes on with other country's federations, but if the USFSA were on their job, they should have known that Rachael had a serious injury. They say she found out about it a week prior to the competition but that she'd been having problems even before then (not to mention the fact she's been chronically injured all season long). Whether or not their knowledge of that would have yielded a different result (ie. pulling Rachael and sending Mirai, or just having Mirai on standby or in Moscow just in case), the point is they should have known. So if they admit they had no idea she was injured, it looks bad for them.

    OTOH, if they don't do anything about the situation, either (1) they knew she was seriously injured and gave her the okay to skate anyway (which, in hindsight, was a big, irresponsible mistake) or (2) they just don't care which, IMO, is way worse. People wonder why the US hasn't had a lady on the world podium in 5 years...the federation can shoulder some of the blame here.

    This year, I agreed with the team they sent, though I thought Mirai had a strong case for that second slot as well. Both she and Rachael were sub par at nationals, but Rachael got the nod again. Still, Rachael aka Old Faithful plus a rejuvenated Alissa seemed like an almost sure bet. To see Alissa 5th and Rachael 12th was really a shock, and then she dropped the stress fracture bomb afterwards, everyone's wondering what the USFSA has to say about this.

    If the federation doesn't care about the skaters (either by not monitoring (ignoring) them prior to worlds or sending them to compete with a debilitating injury), it's no wonder the US ladies are in such crappy shape...:sheesh:

  11. #176
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    Rachel Flatt was a guest sportscast anchor!!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YicRdwnZS0M

  12. #177
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Evan Lysacek skated with chronic injuries for much of his career... had the USFSA pulled him out of competitions we'd have been in the same - if not worse - shape the men are in now for nearly the last decade. You can't judge everything based on this one decision.

  13. #178
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanatic View Post
    I'm wondering if we're going to hear anything else about this matter? Whether they do something or not, the USFSA look like a bunch of suckers.

    If they admit that Rachael skated injured without informing them then that means they dropped the ball. People often frown at some of the micromanaging that goes on with other country's federations, but if the USFSA were on their job, they should have known that Rachael had a serious injury. They say she found out about it a week prior to the competition but that she'd been having problems even before then (not to mention the fact she's been chronically injured all season long). Whether or not their knowledge of that would have yielded a different result (ie. pulling Rachael and sending Mirai, or just having Mirai on standby or in Moscow just in case), the point is they should have known. So if they admit they had no idea she was injured, it looks bad for them.

    OTOH, if they don't do anything about the situation, either (1) they knew she was seriously injured and gave her the okay to skate anyway (which, in hindsight, was a big, irresponsible mistake) or (2) they just don't care which, IMO, is way worse. People wonder why the US hasn't had a lady on the world podium in 5 years...the federation can shoulder some of the blame here.

    This year, I agreed with the team they sent, though I thought Mirai had a strong case for that second slot as well. Both she and Rachael were sub par at nationals, but Rachael got the nod again. Still, Rachael aka Old Faithful plus a rejuvenated Alissa seemed like an almost sure bet. To see Alissa 5th and Rachael 12th was really a shock, and then she dropped the stress fracture bomb afterwards, everyone's wondering what the USFSA has to say about this.

    If the federation doesn't care about the skaters (either by not monitoring (ignoring) them prior to worlds or sending them to compete with a debilitating injury), it's no wonder the US ladies are in such crappy shape...:sheesh:
    Good post.

    About blaming USFS in part for the predicament- maybe. I know in 2009 we did not send our best ladies team to worlds, and that was due in part to a controversial decision at Nationals. So I can agree there. However, in 2010 we DID send our strongest team. Nagasu was even in position to WIN Worlds but completely blew it in the long, as we all know. USFS is in the clear here. This year? Flatt/Czisny was a strong team, at least in theory. Some argue that Czisny/Nagasu would have been our best bet, and I suppose I can see that side of the argument, but Nagasu is her own worst enemy right now. Then we hear that Flatt was injured. Should USFS have known about it? Absolutely. But- is it the USFS' fault for not monitoring her more closely, or team Flatt's fault for failing to notify USFS on the situation?

  14. #179
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle View Post
    Evan Lysacek skated with chronic injuries for much of his career... had the USFSA pulled him out of competitions we'd have been in the same - if not worse - shape the men are in now for nearly the last decade. You can't judge everything based on this one decision.
    What we don't know is if this injury was hindering Rachel in practices. But whatever the case, it certainly didn't make Team Flatt nor USFS look good...

  15. #180
    Rejoicing in the land of Kwan kwanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by R.D. View Post
    Good post.

    About blaming USFS in part for the predicament- maybe. I know in 2009 we did not send our best ladies team to worlds, and that was due in part to a controversial decision at Nationals. So I can agree there. However, in 2010 we DID send our strongest team. Nagasu was even in position to WIN Worlds but completely blew it in the long, as we all know. USFS is in the clear here. This year? Flatt/Czisny was a strong team, at least in theory. Some argue that Czisny/Nagasu would have been our best bet, and I suppose I can see that side of the argument, but Nagasu is her own worst enemy right now. Then we hear that Flatt was injured. Should USFS have known about it? Absolutely. But- is it the USFS' fault for not monitoring her more closely, or team Flatt's fault for failing to notify USFS on the situation?
    I agree about 2009. In 2009 the team should have been Flatt/Zhang, not Czisny/Flatt. The judges gave her that title based on a good SP performance, despite the train wreck she delivered in the LP. They gambled there, thinking a mature, graceful headcase (Czisny) had a better shot than a wonky techniqued but surprisingly consistent skater (Zhang) who outskated her.

    2010 was unfortunate but not unexpected. Mirai was coming off of her very first major senior international competition (the Olympics) and found herself in 1st place ahead of both the Olympic gold and silver medalists. She freaked out. Being it was her first trip to worlds and only her second major competition, I was disappointed but not surprised by what happened. That was a lot to take in and she folded.

    This year, I still say Czisny/Flatt was a good choice. However knowing that even at her worst, Mirai is still better than Rachael did leave me a bit skeptical as to whether we were sending our strongest team or just a strong team. Even with her implosion at worlds last year, Mirai still scored 175.48, which would have placed her 6th behind Alissa this year. :sheesh:

    Blame in this situation goes to both sides: the USFSA should have known about Rachael's stress fracture and Team Flatt should have notified them. My guess is that had Team Flatt reported the injury, given the serious nature of the injury, the USFSA probably would have requested that she sit out and sent Mirai in. Mirai has a better international appeal and, most importantly, she was injury free and coming off of a record high at 4CC. She was ready. But being that this is possibly Rachael's last time going to worlds, they decided to take a shot in the dark. I'm thinking that may have been overconfidence on Team Flatt's part, either in her ability to skate through the pain or the leeway they'd get from the judges for skating less than great.

    Some skaters can fall, pop jumps and still score decently...but they should have known that the international judges are very iffy when it comes to Rachael. Anytime they can help it, they don't put her in first. Case in point: both of her GP assignments this year. At NHK, Carolina, with all of those mistakes and that junior level jump layout, beat her out for gold. Skate America: she loses to a newby, Kanako Murakami, at a "home" event, by 2 points. Being that she's a national champ, Olympian and veteran senior, you'd think the judges would have spotted her those 2 points in PCS or GOEs...nope.

    Either way, the USFSA should have known or been notified. Both sides are to blame...but something needs to be done.

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