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Thread: 2012 NHK Ladies Free Skate

  1. #271
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    Finally watched the program on CBC and am wondering about all the hand-wringing and outcry. I agree that Mao should not have won but I can see why the judges like her and justify to themselves to work it out that she would win overall. I love Akiko -- her style and spunk are truly endearing. Her program is also unique and very interesting but I find she is rough around the edges and I don't like her jump entrances. Mao is more of a pretty-pretty skater and seems to fit more with what the judges are traditionally looking for. I don't know. There is a sense of refinement there and her moves feel more complete. As Kurt mentioned in the commentary that the judges are more concerned with the program content in the LP than the technical. This may have just been cover to preserve the sport but evidence seems to suggest that that's what the judges are looking for.

    Saying that, I do think the system is broken and some re-emphasis needs to be put back onto the jumps. I hate to see the top ladies dropping the lutz and flip. Programs without them seem so lame no matter how many 3T-3Ts or 2A-3Ts you do.

    If the current system remains as it is, the sport really is in need of a skater who can do both the technical content and have the skating skills the judges like to reward. I don't think all the results are due to back-room politicking but the judges do have prejudices and favourites. I don't know. I feel like the Men and Ice Dance have started to embrace COP and I am really enjoying those divisions. Pairs and Ladies still seem to be finding their way.

  2. #272
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fruit Loops View Post
    Finally watched the program on CBC and am wondering about all the hand-wringing and outcry. I agree that Mao should not have won but I can see why the judges like her and justify to themselves to work it out that she would win overall. I love Akiko -- her style and spunk are truly endearing. Her program is also unique and very interesting but I find she is rough around the edges and I don't like her jump entrances. Mao is more of a pretty-pretty skater and seems to fit more with what the judges are traditionally looking for. I don't know. There is a sense of refinement there and her moves feel more complete. As Kurt mentioned in the commentary that the judges are more concerned with the program content in the LP than the technical. This may have just been cover to preserve the sport but evidence seems to suggest that that's what the judges are looking for.

    Saying that, I do think the system is broken and some re-emphasis needs to be put back onto the jumps. I hate to see the top ladies dropping the lutz and flip. Programs without them seem so lame no matter how many 3T-3Ts or 2A-3Ts you do.

    If the current system remains as it is, the sport really is in need of a skater who can do both the technical content and have the skating skills the judges like to reward. I don't think all the results are due to back-room politicking but the judges do have prejudices and favourites. I don't know. I feel like the Men and Ice Dance have started to embrace COP and I am really enjoying those divisions. Pairs and Ladies still seem to be finding their way.
    Wonderfully said!

  3. #273
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    I... am going to say nothing about the Asada/Suzuki ness. I agree with most of the posters here and have nothing to add.

    However, I am gonna let out a fangirl SQUEEEEE for Mirai! She looks so fierce now, it is amazing to see that. She still doesn't quite bring the JOY to her skating that she once did but I'm going to be optimistic that will come. I'm so happy for her and she is such a great sport too- I can't really remember the last time someone was that legitimately happy to get third. Of course I hope eventually she will be first, but one step at a time. She made my day.

  4. #274
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    Asada vs Suzuki NHK Trophy Free Skates: My Verdict from Tony Wheeler blog

    As you can see, I had Suzuki easily winning the free skate-- by 16.77 points (compared to the 9.30 points she actually won it by).

    A few things-- I think both skaters were overscored in certain areas-- specifically some of the spins. The judges seemed to be +2 and +3 happy today, but I think most of their spins were 'good' at best. Suzuki's FCSp4 really should have had negative GOE, for example, but was still able to pull some +1. Don't think so.

    With that in mind, I had Suzuki 1.89 points lower technically, while I had Asada 3.33 points lower.

    Program components, to me, were where the total joke happened. Asada's program, for the first three or so minutes, has no life at all and she really could be skating to any music. Much like the jumps in this performance, it's just so on-and-off until the footwork starts to gain energy. Also, her fifth jump element comes two seconds before the half-way point. That's poor program planning in my opinion. She has nice basics and beautiful edges, but she really crawls through everything and doesn't do too much in terms of transitions. I've always felt that way about her, honestly.

    Suzuki has a nice program and was much more engaged. She has some nice transitional highlights and a great tension and build with the music. I do think she's not as strong as Asada skating skill-wise, but everything else should have been higher in my opinion. Asada pulled off scores mostly in the 8's for performance/execution (huh?), choreography, and interpretation. I just don't feel like she was into this program at all.

    For what it's worth, Asada lost 14.85 points off her base mark just from the three jumps she doubled and one she singled in this program. 117 with three triples.

    Suzuki easily wins this battle in my opinion.

  5. #275
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    I was really happy for Mirai. I hadn't seen her skate that well in awhile. Her body has obviously changed a lot, but she still landed everything! Good job, Mirai!

  6. #276
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    Quote Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
    I doubt it is that Mao doesn't care its just the jumps aren't what they use to be. Asada was always a bit overrated in the jump department due to triple axel which was never the most consistent thing ever. Add in the new rules with harsher penalties and that made it worse... In reality Kim was always overall the better jumper she just didn't have an eye catching trick like the 3axel.

    I'm sure Mao is doing her best and practicing it. Many said she didn't look happy with that "win" It is what it is.
    And Kim is coming back this year. I'm wondering what shape she's going to be in December in Germany & if she'll bring all her big jumps with her, like her 3F/3T, 3Lz/3T, etc. If so, it's going to be a game changer b/c everyone else better step up or else.

    I do not want to see senior ladies do 3Lo, 3S & 3T and pat themselves on the back because they did so well (w/o any 3F and 3Lz or 3/3).

    BTW - I don't know what's up w/ Mao, but NHK showed her pre-comp interview, and she looked AWFUL -- really bad complexion (sallow and really bad brownish yellowish tone), puffy eyes, etc. She did not look like a young woman in her early 20s who should be in good health. I almost didn't recognize her at first.

  7. #277
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    Quote Originally Posted by bekalc View Post
    I doubt it is that Mao doesn't care its just the jumps aren't what they use to be. Asada was always a bit overrated in the jump department due to triple axel which was never the most consistent thing ever. Add in the new rules with harsher penalties and that made it worse... In reality Kim was always overall the better jumper she just didn't have an eye catching trick like the 3axel.

    I'm sure Mao is doing her best and practicing it. Many said she didn't look happy with that "win" It is what it is.
    If she is practicing and this is the result that does indicate the jumps will improve at all. What if she just ends up like a Lepisto. Someones who just doubles things and still wins medals and an event sometimes. The jumps are so bad now but it's not like the environment even is that tough in jumps. Ando no 3/3 or 2a/3t when she did worlds and Kostner no lutz and one triple flip. Maybe she is just savvy and not pushing the jumping! It looks worse coming from her because of the the 3A and 3/3 past. But why can't she just be satisfied by how she is winning and the whole environment of skating.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fruit Loops View Post
    Finally watched the program on CBC and am wondering about all the hand-wringing and outcry. I agree that Mao should not have won but I can see why the judges like her and justify to themselves to work it out that she would win overall. I love Akiko -- her style and spunk are truly endearing. Her program is also unique and very interesting but I find she is rough around the edges and I don't like her jump entrances. Mao is more of a pretty-pretty skater and seems to fit more with what the judges are traditionally looking for. I don't know. There is a sense of refinement there and her moves feel more complete. As Kurt mentioned in the commentary that the judges are more concerned with the program content in the LP than the technical. This may have just been cover to preserve the sport but evidence seems to suggest that that's what the judges are looking for.

    Saying that, I do think the system is broken and some re-emphasis needs to be put back onto the jumps. I hate to see the top ladies dropping the lutz and flip. Programs without them seem so lame no matter how many 3T-3Ts or 2A-3Ts you do.

    If the current system remains as it is, the sport really is in need of a skater who can do both the technical content and have the skating skills the judges like to reward. I don't think all the results are due to back-room politicking but the judges do have prejudices and favourites. I don't know. I feel like the Men and Ice Dance have started to embrace COP and I am really enjoying those divisions. Pairs and Ladies still seem to be finding their way.
    Even if the program is good I can't believe commentators would say "doubles? who cares?" Like jumps should be irrelevent. It's not his job to defend the system if all the ladies go back to doubles just because their program might be good. Ando, Kostner, then Mao with 2 or 3 triples. I can totally see it happening. Even if it wins it is atrocious and awful and should not automatically be defended. Maybe if some of the other skaters who are losing to this nonsense speak up things would get better. Jumps are regressing to the point to when skaters had to spend lots of time on figures!

  8. #278
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nadia01 View Post
    And Kim is coming back this year. I'm wondering what shape she's going to be in December in Germany & if she'll bring all her big jumps with her, like her 3F/3T, 3Lz/3T, etc. If so, it's going to be a game changer b/c everyone else better step up or else.

    I do not want to see senior ladies do 3Lo, 3S & 3T and pat themselves on the back because they did so well (w/o any 3F and 3Lz or 3/3).

    BTW - I don't know what's up w/ Mao, but NHK showed her pre-comp interview, and she looked AWFUL -- really bad complexion (sallow and really bad brownish yellowish tone), puffy eyes, etc. She did not look like a young woman in her early 20s who should be in good health. I almost didn't recognize her at first.
    If this is supposed to be a dig at Mao, I do think it's totally uncalled for. Does it really look like she's happy because she did so well?

  9. #279
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmyers View Post
    If she is practicing and this is the result that does indicate the jumps will improve at all. What if she just ends up like a Lepisto. Someones who just doubles things and still wins medals and an event sometimes. The jumps are so bad now but it's not like the environment even is that tough in jumps. Ando no 3/3 or 2a/3t when she did worlds and Kostner no lutz and one triple flip. Maybe she is just savvy and not pushing the jumping! It looks worse coming from her because of the the 3A and 3/3 past. But why can't she just be satisfied by how she is winning and the whole environment of skating.



    Even if the program is good I can't believe commentators would say "doubles? who cares?" Like jumps should be irrelevent. It's not his job to defend the system if all the ladies go back to doubles just because their program might be good. Ando, Kostner, then Mao with 2 or 3 triples. I can totally see it happening. Even if it wins it is atrocious and awful and should not automatically be defended. Maybe if some of the other skaters who are losing to this nonsense speak up things would get better. Jumps are regressing to the point to when skaters had to spend lots of time on figures!
    The commentators didn't say "doubles, who cares?" They were just trying to explain what the judges are looking for.

    I'm not saying it's right. Just that is how it is and, by the systems' own rules, technically not "cheating". I did go on to say that I think that system in broken. I don't want skaters with 2 or 3 triples to win either. I do think Mao's level of skating and her reputation could have kept her in the bronze position without much complaint from me. But on the other hand, watching it on the TV I can see why the judges love her and go out of the way to prop her up. My personal preference is for Akiko but don't blame the judges for preferring Mao.

    I just want jumps to count more.
    Last edited by Fruit Loops; 11-25-2012 at 12:16 AM.

  10. #280
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    Quote Originally Posted by chloepoco View Post
    If this is supposed to be a dig at Mao, I do think it's totally uncalled for. Does it really look like she's happy because she did so well?
    ITA. Some of these comments get much too personal. A judging controversy should address the judges and the system, since that is how the results are determined. It's easy to target certain skaters but that really doesn't solve anything.

  11. #281
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fruit Loops View Post
    I'm not saying it's right. Just that is how it is and, by the systems' own rules, technically not "cheating". I did go on to say that I think that system in broken. I don't want skaters with 2 or 3 triples to win either. I do think Mao's level of skating and her reputation could have kept her in the bronze position without much complaint from me. But on the other hand, watching it on the TV I can see why the judges love her and go out of the way to prop her up. My personal preference is for Akiko but don't blame the judges for preferring Mao.
    So you think the judges "go out of their way to prop up" Mao because of her reputation and style, and you said in your earlier post that the judges seem to have prejudices and favorites, but you "don't blame" them for this and don't understand why people are complaining? People are complaining because the judges are not supposed to go out of their way to prop up a skater because they "love her." The judges' job is to judge how well the skaters perform and rank them accordingly. I don't blame the judges for having preferences; it's when they "go out of their way to prop up" the skaters they prefer that there's a problem.

    Not saying that's what's happening (I'm more on the side of "this system can suck sometimes and doesn't always capture the essence of a superior program"), but if you think it is, then you should have a problem with that. If you care about the integrity of the sport, it makes no sense to be sitting there saying, "Yes, yes, the judges are probably going out of their way to prop up this skater because she has a great reputation and she's pretty to watch, and that's just hunky-dory! I don't understand why anyone would complain about that!"
    Last edited by Rachmaninoff; 11-25-2012 at 12:45 AM.

  12. #282
    Ya'll just need to ignore it. aftertherain's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nadia01 View Post
    And Kim is coming back this year. I'm wondering what shape she's going to be in December in Germany & if she'll bring all her big jumps with her, like her 3F/3T, 3Lz/3T, etc. If so, it's going to be a game changer b/c everyone else better step up or else.

    I do not want to see senior ladies do 3Lo, 3S & 3T and pat themselves on the back because they did so well (w/o any 3F and 3Lz or 3/3).
    Personally, I'd like to be able to see Yuna do a 3Lo with the rest of her awe-inspiring jumps. Just sayin'.
    Last edited by aftertherain; 11-25-2012 at 01:33 AM.

  13. #283
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftertherain View Post
    Personally, I'd like to be able to see Yuna do a 3Lo with the rest of her awe-inspiring jumps. Just sayin'.
    Not I. Kim had a pelvic injury in her teens that causes her some trouble with the loop, I believe. Right now I'll be more than happy just to see her in a good shape & still doing those enormous 3-3 combinations.

  14. #284
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    LADIES FREE SKATE - VIDEOS & RESULT (Updated)

    1. Mao ASADA (JPN) - 185.27 Free Skate
    2. Akiko SUZUKI (JPN) - 185.22 Free Skate
    3. Mirai NAGASU (USA) - 176.68 Free Skate
    4. Zijun LI (CHN) - 174.11 Free Skate, 2nd Copy
    5. Agnes ZAWADZKI (USA) - 160.37 Free Skate
    6. Elene GEDEVANISHVILI (GEO) - 156.96 Free Skate
    7. Ksenia MAKAROVA (RUS) - 156.52 Free Skate
    8. Haruka IMAI (JPN) - 145.42 Free Skate
    9. Sofia BIRYUKOVA (RUS) - 139.12 Free Skate

  15. #285
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    I finally got see both programs and I can't believe that Mao won with that program. Forget the jumps, even her usual performance/packaging was not up to snuff. I can't believe I'm saying this, but I kept thinking "Please give me Ashley Wagner's Black Swan!" several times during that program. The fact that she got nearly the same PCS as Wagner at TEB is actually quite mindblowing.

    Yes Akiko was 9.35 points behind, but they marked her down in PCS when that error did not mar her overall program and flow as much as Mao's mistakes did in the FS.

    Consider this: Mao got 32.25 in PCS in the SP for a very lovely program. If you factor that by 2 (the factor in the FS), that's 64.50. For the FS she got 64.55. She actually scored BETTER in the FS in PCS than she had for a much better performed SP. How does that make any sense?

    Meanwhile, Akiko's PCS score in the SP was 30.34. With the FS factor that's 60.68. She scored 62.11 in the FS. So basically, the judges docked her by 1.43 points in PCS despite, IMO, that she seem to maintain the same level of components in both programs.

    So it's not even a matter that Akiko's PCS should have been higher than Mao's (if both skate clean and well, I agree Mao edges Akiko on skating skills and transitions), but that the judges being much more harsh on Akiko's score when she makes even a single mistake. Mao did not get that same harsh treatment in the FS when clearly she did not perform that program as well as she usually does.

    I actually feel bad for Mao because she is a very driven and competitive person and clearly she was embarrassed that she won with that performance. I agree it's uncalled for to pick on Mao directly for scoring she had no control over. In fact, Mao is a woman of great integrity. Consider the fact she reworked her jump technique because she wanted to have all the triple jumps with the correct edge/technique, even if that meant not winning in the short-term. I have ultimate respect for Mao and this judging does not change that for me. I wouldn't be surprised if Mao is very unhappy right now that she won this way.

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