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Thread: New Hersh article on Kwan

  1. #1
    Lovin' the Kween ... Now and Forever
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    New Hersh article on Kwan

    Phil Hersh has written another article on Michelle ... featured in today's Chicago Tribune. This really goes into great depth about her feelings on skating and competing ... and life.
    The only real news is that it seems she is working on the 3/3 for Worlds in March ... looks like it might not be ready for Nationals.


    http://chicagosports.chicagotribune....national-print

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Thanks for posting this article, Nymkfan. I thought this was the most interesting part:

    "The thoughts in those phrases reflect a kid who suddenly has become an adult and worries about closing out any of the boundless possibilities of youth....

    "The suggestion that she should feel no guilt about continuing a brilliant career as an athlete/entertainer leads to the questions about herself Kwan is trying to answer. What is wrong with being relatively one-dimensional, if that dimension in her sport is like that of Baryshnikov among dancers?

    "'I have to argue with that kind of idea, keep on skating until you can't walk anymore,' Kwan said. 'I'm afraid I'll keep on skating and skating and skating, and I'll forget I'm not 20 anymore. I want chapters in my book, not just one long chapter.'"


    Mathman

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    Thanks Nymkfan, great article! I like that Michelle is talking about the conflicting feelings she has between wanting to skate and wanting "other chapters" in her life. I actually think that's part of what gives her skating depth.

    How heartbreaking that she had to miss her sister Karen's wedding due to the IFSC and recently going with Artunian as coach. I know we talk about events like the IFSC as cheezefests, but I think it shows that skaters like Michelle bear in mind that thousands have paid to see them skate and millions will tune in to watch. I remember Scott Hamilton couldn't be with his mother when she was sick because of something to do with either Worlds or the Olympics. Anyway, for as much as they get, top skaters do have to give up a lot too.

    However, I don't know that I agree with Hersh's assessment that ladies figure skating has "withered" and with some of the ladies skaters he cited as "top competition." I agree with Irina Slutskaya, except from '97 to '00; Lu Chen; Tara, albeit a short career; and he lists Sasha in the past tense--don't get that. But listing Nicole Bobek and Surya Bonaly as better than skaters like Fumie, Shizuka, and the still-competing, as far as I know, Sasha seemed out of sync. Michelle started the era of the seven-triple program and no other ladies skater has ever been consistent at doing that. She was consistent doing it at 14 and she's consistent today. When a sport gets to that level, you're going to have fewer and fewer close competitors. Just like in men's with the quad and pairs with SBS triples.

    I also like that Michelle talked specifically about 3/3s and hip problems. She really broke it down as to why a 3/3 is so much harder on the landing hip than a 3/2. This is what concerns me about young girls, especially pre-puberty, focusing on 3/3s before they have the bone mass and the strength to do them properly. I still want the hinged figure skating boot if 3/3s and quads are to become part of ladies figure skating, but I wish every eligible skater in the world would read just what Michelle said about doing 3/3s. I know every sport has its risks, but there are ways to minimize the risks and Michelle just spelled out some of them. I'm sure nobody wants anymore Naomi Nari Nams or Tara Lipinskis, and those are just the a couple of the well-known ones.

    But overall a good article. I hope someday Michelle will look back and realize how much she packed into her life between 12 and 23 and how much more she will probably still get from skating in the future. I'm still betting she'll get that OGM in Turin
    Rgirl
    Last edited by Rgirl; 01-04-2004 at 11:19 AM.

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    Lovin' the Kween ... Now and Forever
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    I like the way you think Rgirl!

    I was especially happy she addressed her hip issues and the 3/3's too. For all the criticism she takes at times from people who think she is obsessed with getting Oly gold ... she does not do more than her body will safely allow. And if that means she never gets the OGM ... so be it.
    It's interesting, but when you look back at her career, you realize that she set the bar so high at such a young age ... and she's still fighting to keep up with it today.

    I think she is an amazing athlete, but an even more amazing human being.

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    On the hilltop, where Kwan spends her free time alone in a hotel room, she is Michelle Kwan, the world's best figure skater trying to become even better. She was here for seven years as a child and a teenager and a young woman, when her mother or father or both lived with her, when she hardly noticed what was Down the Hill. These days she is back as an adult, on her own.
    Oh, just reading this makes me tear eyed.

    OK, I finished the reading. It really moved me when I reading along and digest the whole thing. Hersh got the fact wrong again, during her last 10 apperences at Nats (1994-2003) she finished first 7 times and second 3 times (1994,1995,1997) not 2 times.

    Thanks nymkfan for the link.

    How heartbreaking that she had to miss her sister Karen's wedding due to the IFSC and recently going with Artunian as coach. I know we talk about events like the IFSC as cheezefests, but I think it shows that skaters like Michelle bear in mind that thousands have paid to see them skate and millions will tune in to watch. I remember Scott Hamilton couldn't be with his mother when she was sick because of something to do with either Worlds or the Olympics. Anyway, for as much as they get, top skaters do have to give up a lot too.
    From ppl around MK say, Danny Kwan used to tell MK ppl pay to see you skating, so you have to give you all. MK strive for the best each time she steps on the ice.


    I think she is an amazing athlete, but an even more amazing human being.
    ITA, before when I read from web fans about how down to the earth she has been. I kind half believ and half doubt. But just recently from what I hear the first hand experiences with her in daily life (without media hype or fans hype) she is truely a remarkable human being.

    Last edited by mzheng; 01-04-2004 at 11:39 AM.

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    Me, too, MZheng.

    Mathman

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    Whom did Karen marry?

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    Originally posted by Jhar55
    Whom did Karen marry?
    Peter Oppegard

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    Even if you hate her skating you've got to love her as a person. She is just so special. A lovely article.

    As close as Michelle and Karen are it's sad that they couldn't somehow schedule the wedding so that Michelle could attend.

    Nice to hear that the top two U.S. ladies both felt it important to honor their commitments to the cheesefest even though both would much rather have been elsewhere. I like that it seems they feel a responsibility to the sport that has made them stars.

    Piel

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    GOLDEN DREAMS RealtorGal's Avatar
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    Question

    I still don't really understand why she would miss her own sister's wedding. For some cheesefest? To practice with her new coach? My understanding is that in the Kwan family, family always came first.

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    Arm Chair Skate Fan show 42's Avatar
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    Knowing Michelle's schedule, there should have been some plan in place so that neither event conflicted with the other..........makes sense to me...........42

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    Originally posted by RealtorGal
    I still don't really understand why she would miss her own sister's wedding. For some cheesefest? To practice with her new coach? My understanding is that in the Kwan family, family always came first.
    Well, Michelle made this committment some months back and her father has always taught her to honor her committments.
    Forinstance, all the people who buy tickets to see you and they you pull a no show and those people don't get refunds.

    The only thing I could guess of is that Karen and Peter set a date after Michelle made her committment and their wasn't enough time for Michelle to get to Italy and be back home in shape for the competition and to test of Rafael in a competition setting and how they work together.

    Michelle has her reasons and I'm sure Karen & Peter would've loved for her to be there but, they understood. I'm sure it was probably video taped for her.

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    I don'r get that either Rgal. As few competitions/shows as Michelle is doing this year you would think they could coordinate schedules better than that. if they were married in Italy they had to put some thought behind their plans.

    Piel

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    Originally posted by Piel
    I don'r get that either Rgal. As few competitions/shows as Michelle is doing this year you would think they could coordinate schedules better than that. if they were married in Italy they had to put some thought behind their plans.

    Piel
    None of us knows the details and the reasons
    and IMO have no place to say what they should've done or how they should have done it. Only they know their reasons and did what was in their best interest.

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    It seems to me that Karen's wedding might have been last minute but Michelle wouldn't have wanted to get into that since it's more Karen's business.

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