One query that I have not yet found a satisfactory answer to is what happens in a Konstantin Menshov style situation - for example, Kostya is "the one", skates the short of the team event, but at the end of his long in that event, dislocates his shoulder. Can Russia then replace him in the singles field, or is it a case of "tough luck"?
(The discussion of Tarasova politicking for Kovtun is in the event that - heaven forbid - Plushy's body isn't quite as willing as his mind.)
The rules I read recently don't say anything about replacing an injured skater in the team event with a new one or the reserve for the individual. There's just nothing there about it.
I don't think a healthy plushenko would prevent tarasova from being all over the place saying it'd be a mistake athletically not to consider excluding plushenko because of his surgeries!
I don't know... she's always seemed very positive about it, said how moved she'd be if he skated in Sochi. But you mean to say that situation has changed? Do we have any recent - recent-ish - statements from her regarding Sochi? That would be a way to gage which way that wind is blowing... Anyway, it's going to be an awful gamble however you slice & dice it, with only one man. I think most people would still want to put their money on Plushy, if he is still in any way able. In his case, it's his body that is in question - not his mind; and if anyone can command mind over matter, it's him. Also, think of the publicity and wow-factor of his skating his last in Sochi - it's going to be massive. So, all in all, I think that, everything else being equal, they'd still prefer to go with Plushy - even should Tarasova have changed her mind; which, again, do we know that she has, or is it sheer speculation on our part?
It's just total speculation! I'm sure tarasova would be interested in seeing plushenko skate but maybe not more than seeing a student if hers compete.
To let Kovtun skate on Olympics would not be so ideal and would be really extreme exceptional. Sure he is JGPF's winner but that probably is the highest international title he got. No matter how talented he is, he is extremely lack of experiences in international events.
To let him give a shot to earn two spots for Russia is one thing, to represent Russia on Olympics is another. Unless the situation is way worse that: Plushenko (god forbid) cannot do it physically, Artur (hopes not) bombs again. If this is happening and Kovtun is doing extremely well (getting into GPF, winning RN, etc.), then Kovtun can be a good candidate.
Kovtun maybe very talented, but he is no Yagudin (even for Yagudin, he had won quite some titles before he competed 1998 Olympics I think). Plushenko's skating is far more polished and powerful than Kovtun's. In fact, Plushenko's skating is the most powerful skating out there in the field. Russia would be really insane to put Plushenko aside for this event if his health can hold him.
PS, I really like Artur's LP this year, it is so beautiful. I wish he could be the one to back Plushenko up. It is about time for him to show what he can do.
Plushenko needs health and two good programs. He shouldn't repeat the mistake he did in 2010 and cost him the OGM. Now it can cost him his health because of the huge effort he's making to get in shape.
(My apologies. I know maybe this is not quite what you meant, but this type of arguments is maybe something I've become somewhat sensitive to.)
More specifically to Plushenko in 2010, I feel that Aranjuez and Tango Amore had their strengths and weaknesses. Without getting into all that, I just want to mention that it seemed to me that before the 09/10 season started, many people were saying no, it's impossible, he's been gone too long, he's too old/overweight/injured, it's never been achieved before, etc. But after the Olympics, all that was forgotten, and the general chorus, at least to my not-very-objective eyes, seemed to have to turned to why didn't he do this, if he'd only done that (my italics), this shows he must've not understood modern figure skating/had a bad attitude/been arrogant, etc. To be frank, I find it somewhat ironic, and not in a happy way if I may say so. (Actually, I even want to say that perhaps there might've been something similar in 2006, though he won the gold that time. But that's the topic for another rant.) Overall, I believe that he and his team understood the issues involved. But he's the one who has to skate the programs. Talking about "huge effort to get in shape" and "costing his health"....That's something he's already done, and I would say done more than once.
(More generally, as a side note, may I say that I'm personally not a huge fan of the phrase "good program", as it appears to be often used, in the absense of more detailed descriptions/analysis? IMHO, there are multiple artistic and technical aspects to a skating program, some of which are not necessarily correlated, and some of which may even possibly be conflicting, which the phrase--again just IMHO--seems to have a tendency to conflate. But again....topic for another rant.)
As for what Plushenko needs to do or should do in this upcoming final season....Well, I guess if I were to talk about my own wishes (while making it clear that it is not a matter of what I think he should do), I hope he skates in a way that can satisfy himself, and that his programs mesh with him physically and artistically. Beyond that, I hope he'll be able to still take artistic risks, and that he'll get good results. But if I have to choose, the first hope is the most primary at this point, for me personally.
Again, I am sorry. A few of the posters here know me from other places, and they know that I have a tendency to get emo/verbose at times when it comes to Plushy. It's one of the perks of being a fan of him, I guess.
I especially agree with the before/after scenario of Vancouver - which you will not find me bringing up, as thinking about it still makes me feel sick to my soul. But it seems to be often the case - people forget the scenario "before" and what they were saying, and what "everybody" was saying when the situation changes. I see this a lot - as for example, who now recalls the people who were gloating at the prospect of the first LOTR movie flopping, and that they'd then have two more duds on their hands which they had already paid for? People's memories are so... short.
I would be intererested in your opinion about Aranjuez' strenghts.
Agree. Go for the kill. Kill it. Just go for the kill.
About Aranjuez specifically, to be honest I am not certain if this is a rhetorical question....I will only talk about how it spoke to me here. To me, there is a great deal of masculine power in this program, (and just in case of possible misunderstandings, "masculine" here is not used to imply superiority in constrast to "feminine", but more descriptive, with the understanding that it possesses its own value, and "power" here is not exactly in the physical sense), yet that power was not thrown out, but well-controlled and balanced. And at the same time, one can sense the "still center of things" within, to use a perhaps too-wild metaphor. It is mature in image, and I am not certain that the Plushenko of say 03-05--for all his glories--would have been able to carry as well. It "fitted" him, showcasing his innate charisma. (I put "fit" in quotation marks because I am currently developing the view that with Plushenko on ice, perhaps I do not want to draw such a perfect dividing line between his person and his programs.) From what I've seen in various places, it is a program that has captivated people who knew nothing of him or of figure skating before, and made them into fans.
"But that's all subjective, emotional, romantic nonsense," I know many will say. They will point to the jump layout, transitions, etc. To which I would say , yes, maybe these are weaknesses of this program, but as far as I am concerned, these are technical weaknesses and not fundamentally artistic ones (which is not to say that they are unimportant. And just to be super-finicky about things here, by "technical", right now I mean in the sense of figure skating as a sport, and not in the sense of something like "artistic technique".) But if one would speak of the artistic side of this program or any other, then I believe one does need to talk about unity, ideas, themes, emotions it evokes, ways it makes one or many members of the audience see something in the world differently. In other words, talk about it as if it were art. I do know that one can argue about the need or importance of such things to figure skating. For the moment, I only want to say that I find them important, at least in the context of his skating, and they are one of the main reasons why I am a Plushenko fan.
(Sorry, I know this is still all too brief and vague and not so thought out yet. But you've definitely got me thinking; though right now I am unable to rewatch the videos. I'll try to work on it some more later, when I get the chance.)
As a fan, no, I do not know this. It would be presumptuous of me to imagine that I know any such thing. In fact, at this point I don't even conjecture it.As a fan, you should know that Plushenko is satisfied only when he wins gold.