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Thread: Was Suzuki twice a victim of underscoring and pageantry in PCS?

  1. #136
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bartek
    Now look at Asada's Swan Lake. I will omit interesting choreography and focus only on technical transitions which make the jumps more difficult to land.

    1. a few turns leading directly into 3Lo with no long glide, interesting exit with little ina bauer right after landing
    2. standard one-foot glide like in Akiko's program going into 2A+3T, simple exit
    3. skating through the rink with spread eagle and four turns into 3F, simple exit
    4. long and rather simple entry to 3Lz, difficult exit with free leg raised high above hips level
    5. just one turn into 3S, simple exit
    6. nice approach to 3Lo+2Lo with little ina bauer, little back spiral and some steps, simple exit
    7. difficult entrance with steps and very short set-up into 3F+2Lo+2Lo(tano arm), simple exit

    The only two jumping passes that has no additional difficulty are 2A+3T which is supposed be 3A later on so that's understandable and 3S which is Mao's least favourite jump.
    IMHO there should not be any points given for transitions that make you miss the jump. First things first.

    1. A few turns leading directly into a 2Lo, not 3Lo.
    2. No transitions on the entry to 2A+3T-- she landed it!

    4. Long and simple entry into 2fLz, not 3Lz.
    5. Just one turn into 1S, not 3S.

    "7. difficult entrance with steps and very short set-up into 3F+2Lo+2Lo(tano arm), simple exit." -- Um, am I watching th wrong performance? I saw only a 2F, np combo, no Tano.

    So my question is, what is the point of all these transitions into jumps if you don't follow through by doing the jump? Why would the CoP take it into its curious head to reward such a thing?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wally Lutz
    Well written and argued, I concur. Sadly, the above has already been pointed out and discussed in details a week ago here, including painstakingly made video clips to visualize Akiko Suzuki's lack of transitions in / out of her jumps :

    http://www.goldenskate.com/forum/sho...l=1#post682571
    That you for that compilation. I intended to comment at the time, but the thread moved on before I got to it.

    I actually like Suzuki's classic textbook jump entries. I do not think it adds anything of value to the program to twitch back and forth a few times before jumping -- especially if the twitching makes you miss the jump.

    I think it is a flaw in the CoP to award irrelevant ornamentation over solid technique.

  2. #137
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    All I know is, now that we've had the chance to see Akiko's program on TV here in the eastern U.S., that's an awfully impressive second-place performance! She was magnificent, easily the best in the long program.
    No. That was a magnificent first-place performance. She got 126.62 for that. 9.3 points higher than the second-place LP.

  3. #138
    Thank God for Stephane Lambiel and Matt Savoie! shine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bartek View Post

    Speaking of their SS, that's right that Akiko is faster but notice how many crossovers she does between her jumps and generally how much time she needs to gain speed. Mao does very little crossovers because most of the time she does some steps and turns. I was really surprised that Tarasova gave Mao so little space to gain speed before her most difficult and speed-consuming combo in the program - 3F+2Lo+2Lo. This combination is prone to underrotation therefore it needs a lot of speed in order to be landed flawlessly. The whole thing is even more difficult because of difficult entrance and tano variation. This might be the only mistake in this program that Tarasova made unless she expects Mao to be able to land it cleanly despite the difficulties.
    Seriously, I don't know what exactly you are seeing. Most of the steps that she has preceeding her jumps are mohwaks, which is not exactly what I'd call "difficult transitions". And that definitely does not make it a jampacked program. And I'm not sure how we could've been watching the same program when I saw a lot of front and back cross overs as well as three turns that help her gain speed while you saw none. Unless you are counting all those three turns. Although Suzuki's program is not particularly packed either, from what I can tell, she still has better ride out and pull on her edges and turns (that are not just simple three turns). There's more solidity to them and she doesn't lose speed at the exist of these turns. She also has better knee action and more efficient stroking IMO. It's just so wrong to say that Asada's program is so much more difficult than Suzuki's.
    Last edited by shine; 11-29-2012 at 11:48 PM.

  4. #139
    Custom Title mary01's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bartek View Post
    What? You think that Asada has as few transitions as Suzuki? This is ridculous! Have you even watched their programs? Or maybe you just don't know what transitions are? I don't like when some posters don't like a skater and write things that might make not so knowledgable fans think the same way.

    Regardless of how transitionless were Asada's Masquerade Waltz and Bells of Moscow, this time Tarasova created a work of art for CoP. This is the best CoP-like program Mao has ever had with transitions going into almost EVERY single jump. Not only did Tarasova make up interesting and fresh choreography for such an overused piece of music, but also she put all the CoP things into it without losing connection to music and theme of the program.

    Now, whart transitions does Akiko program have? I find her choreography very interesting and and interpretation of that bird theme very good but transitions? Come on, she doesn't have any transitions going into and out of the jumps. Let her skate Asada program and see if she's still able to land her jumps. I know Akiko is super consistent with the jumps, her age notwithstanding but what if she was to do difficult steps, or even SOME steps before all those jumps? I'm afraid the outcome might be different then.

    Let's look at those programs in more detailed way. Akiko has some easy transitions but not directly going into the the jumps or immediately after landing the jumps. She always does simple glides into her jumps and maybe a mohawak or a three-turn, that is what every skater can do and what I don't consider difficult transitions. Her landings are always simple run-outs, usually with good flowout, that's right but with no additional difficulty.

    1. short easy spiral, break for set up, mohawk, 3Lz+2T+2Lo, simple exit
    2. standard one-foot glide into 2A+3T, simple exit
    3. skating almost through the whole rink with 2 turns into 3F, simple exit
    4. straight glide with a mohawk into 3Lz, sinple exit
    5. one-foot glide into 3Lo+2T, simple exit
    6. a simple turn into 3S, simple exit
    7. the same one-foot glide into 3Lo, simple exit

    No transitions maybe beside that breif spiral. Now, having said that, Akiko is one of my favourite lady skating nowadays and overall I like her FS a lot. I admire her SS with deep edges and knee bent as well as her energy. I would give her high marks for CH, P/E and I as well but not for transitions. Let Akiko skate her program with Mao's transitions and see what would happen.

    Now look at Asada's Swan Lake. I will omit interesting choreography and focus only on technical transitions which make the jumps more difficult to land.

    1. a few turns leading directly into 3Lo with no long glide, interesting exit with little ina bauer right after landing
    2. standard one-foot glide like in Akiko's program going into 2A+3T, simple exit
    3. skating through the rink with spread eagle and four turns into 3F, simple exit
    4. long and rather simple entry to 3Lz, difficult exit with free leg raised high above hips level
    5. just one turn into 3S, simple exit
    6. nice approach to 3Lo+2Lo with little ina bauer, little back spiral and some steps, simple exit
    7. difficult entrance with steps and very short set-up into 3F+2Lo+2Lo(tano arm), simple exit

    The only two jumping passes that has no additional difficulty are 2A+3T which is supposed be 3A later on so that's understandable and 3S which is Mao's least favourite jump. Apart from that, there many transitions in other places like beautiful spread eagles in slow section or those turns at the end of the program whose name I don't know. Mao's spins are much better than Akiko's ad well and her level 4 step sequence is a piece of art in my opinion.
    thanks so much for this detailed analysis. this detailed analysis shows how accurate the outcome was, and how the COP-system rewards the details that often go unnoticed to the casual viewer!
    Last edited by mary01; 11-30-2012 at 09:28 AM.

  5. #140
    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mary01 View Post
    thanks so much for this detailed analysis. this detailed analysis shows how accurate the outcome was, and how the COP-system rewards the details that often go unnoticed to the casual viewer!
    I think you should read shine's post above as his/her take on Mao's transitions is more correct (mostly mohawks and three turns that any low level skater can do...)

  6. #141
    Simply the best. l'etoile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    IMHO there should not be any points given for transitions that make you miss the jump. First things first.

    1. A few turns leading directly into a 2Lo, not 3Lo.
    2. No transitions on the entry to 2A+3T-- she landed it!

    4. Long and simple entry into 2fLz, not 3Lz.
    5. Just one turn into 1S, not 3S.

    "7. difficult entrance with steps and very short set-up into 3F+2Lo+2Lo(tano arm), simple exit." -- Um, am I watching th wrong performance? I saw only a 2F, np combo, no Tano.

    So my question is, what is the point of all these transitions into jumps if you don't follow through by doing the jump? Why would the CoP take it into its curious head to reward such a thing?
    You're right. I think that bolded part is what dug this discussion and NHK ladies result into question marks. Transitions or movements to enhance your chance of better scoring is great, but what is the point if you just can't land the jumps? Even when those transitions were not really that difficult for any elite skaters?
    Last edited by l'etoile; 11-30-2012 at 09:44 AM.

  7. #142
    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    I suspect judges may be embarassed by this overall result...

  8. #143
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    IMHO there should not be any points given for transitions that make you miss the jump. First things first.

    ...So my question is, what is the point of all these transitions into jumps if you don't follow through by doing the jump? Why would the CoP take it into its curious head to reward such a thing?

    ...I think it is a flaw in the CoP to award irrelevant ornamentation over solid technique.
    Quote Originally Posted by l'etoile View Post
    You're right. I think that bolded part is what dug this discussion and NHK ladies result into question marks. Transitions or movements to enhance your chance of better scoring is great, but what is the point if you just can't land the jumps?
    I guess it depends whether you think of a skating program as

    1) a collection of jumps and spins, with everything in between just setup or ornamentation

    or

    2) a collection of skating skills, with jumps and spins as ornaments


    Some might say that if all you're doing is stroking around setting up jumps, you're not skating a program, so what's the point?

  9. #144
    Simply the best. l'etoile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    I guess it depends whether you think of a skating program as

    1) a collection of jumps and spins, with everything in between just setup or ornamentation

    or

    2) a collection of skating skills, with jumps and spins as ornaments


    Some might say that if all you're doing is stroking around setting up jumps, you're not skating a program, so what's the point?
    Non jumps elements are also important, that's given, of course, but it is the jumps that have the highest points and some would argue that jumps are the most important "element" in skating. I love all rounded, beautiful skating with great SS, but if you can't land jumps, IMO, there's little chance of you making it further in your career, a la Thomas Verner. (My heart literally breaks whenever he just can't bring it, which has been his consistent showing lately)

  10. #145
    Custom Title christinaskater's Avatar
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    In the end, Asada won. She had a fantastic SP as well which helped her a lot to win. Judges definitely love Mao for her reputation and superstar status! Basically, Mao winning in Japan is the dream finish for the fans, JSF and ISU. Akiko deserved to win!!!! Judges and everyone else thought she had it already, so they basically wanted Mao to place 3rd to ensure a GPF spot. I think a lot of the judges were increasing the PCS (without talking to JSF or anything) just to ensure Mao had a spot and they all scored her really, really well.

  11. #146
    Custom Title christinaskater's Avatar
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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mOuaUMgFOcg


    For me, this is one of the most beautiful skates of all time! Simply exquisite! She may not have overacting facial expressions but her body oozes with soul and musicality. Her body dances for her. Nearly all movements (except the camel) are polished and looks very naturally graceful.

    She has beautiful transitions before doing a text book jump I love how her lutz keeps improving

    So happy she got a really great score I would love to see her do a clean short and LP in one competition. If she does that consistently she will definitely be rewarded big time.

    I think the music in the end does not give her the excitement she deserves. She skated her gut out especially during the final part of the program. Nonetheless, i love this program and I am so happy that she skated a really clean and nearly flawless free skate (her first in 2-3 years)!!!! Go AKIKO SAN!

    I think her LP has fusions of Shizuka, Daisuke and Carolina all in one. It's a tough , tough program but she is a mighty skater. I am just excited to see how far this program can go!

  12. #147
    Custom Title christinaskater's Avatar
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    Like they said, skating a clean and fantastic program- one of, if not, her greatest skate of all time gives her the most fulfilling feeling.

  13. #148
    Custom Title Rachmaninoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    Um, no. Perhaps the original thread title is as such, but I have never believed in the conspiracy theories and neither do a lot of people.

    As I said in the other threads, I don't deny that Mao has more transitions or better skating skills and fine with her winning in those areas, but I do not see, per the bulllet points and watching the performances a number of times, how Mao can beat Akiko in the CH/PE/IN. Perhaps I need to go and do the same type of post you did.

    But to be fair, Tony Wheeler and Jackie Wong did that for me.

    Neither of them seem to be one to be outraged for no reason and both take the time to consider each of the PCS criteria. You might not agree with every point, but again this emphasizes that not everyone who disagrees with the result is some sort of conspiracy theorist.
    Right on. In fairness, there are people here saying it was fixed, or that Mao was favoured because she is more accomplished/more popular/younger/prettier, but to talk as if these are the only people who have a problem with the outcome is quite a straw man indeed.

    You could indeed make a strong argument for why Mao's program deserved better marks for transitions and skating skills. That doesn't explain the rest of the PCS marks. It also doesn't explain the curious phenomenon in general of how the PCS marks stay strangely close together. No doubt some skaters are great performers but have mediocre SS and TR, and vice-versa. Why don't we see this reflected in the marks very much? This has bothered me the entire time CoP has been in place, and no, not just when my favourites don't win.

    Also, as I said in the NHK ladies' free thread:

    To me, the heart of what's measured in the second mark should be the performance, the connection to the music, the experience the skater creates for the audience. Skating skills, choreography and transitions are more of an important means to that end, rather than something that should be rewarded on their own. I realize the scoring system is set up that way. Well, that's why I'm not too keen on it. I'm actually fine with the technical side of things in this new system, and if there are problems they can be tweaked (and have been). But the second mark...I don't really know what would work better; I just know that this isn't working if it isn't rewarding performances like Akiko's here.
    It's not so much that the scoring is "unfair" if it doesn't work the way I'd like. After all, it's set up beforehand, and the skaters and their team are responsible for designing programs to maximize their scores given the way the system is set up. But I do fear it's taking the sport in a direction that makes it less appealing to me and many others. I don't like that complex transitions, detailed choreography, etc. gets rewarded in the second mark regardless of whether it improves the connection to the music, the spectator experience, the overall performance quality. I don't like that one performance can captivate an audience far more than another's, and get a lower second mark. I think something is lost in that case.

  14. #149
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gkelly View Post
    I guess it depends whether you think of a skating program as

    1) a collection of jumps and spins, with everything in between just setup or ornamentation

    or

    2) a collection of skating skills, with jumps and spins as ornaments


    Some might say that if all you're doing is stroking around setting up jumps, you're not skating a program, so what's the point?
    I guess I would look at it this way. The jumps ornament the program. The jump entries ornament the jumps.

    If a skater glides along and does a couple of Mohawks and 3 turns, that by itself is not by itself especially praiseworthy at the elite senior level. But if she does some elementary steps and turns as the entry to a triple jump, then good for her. However, a fancy entry into a popped jump -- to me, that defeats the purpose of the whole element, in addition to detracting from the choreography, interpretation, etc.

    This is made explicit in the short program. You must do a triple jump with steps, turns, and/or skating movements immediately preceding. If you do the preceding steps but pop the jump -- sorry, a mandatory -3 GOE. This happened to Suzuki in the short program and she lost almost all credit for the element (0.3 points instead of 6.0), and was mired in 5th place.

    In the LP, Mao did the same thing -- four times. But the judges liked her "transitions," even though they were transitions to nowhere.

  15. #150
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    Speaking only for myself, in general...

    I'm not fond of programs that consist of crossovers, choctaw-choctaw, lutz; crossovers, mohawks, three turn, flip; crossovers, traveling threes, loop; etc., i.e., sticking a couple of extra turns before a jump just to increase the chances of earning higher GOE on that jump and/or of earning higher transitions scores, with no other choreographic purpose behind the extra turns. Or even crossovers, spiral or spread eagle, crossover, back outside edge, axel.

    I do think that in many cases the extra turns add difficulty, so all else being equal in the quality and number of rotations of the jump itself, I do think that a more difficult entrance should be able to nudge a jump over the borderline between a lower and a higher GOE (most often likely 0 to +1), but it shouldn't guarantee a higher GOE, and obviously if there are problems with the rotation or landing or air position, etc., of the jump then the usual minuses should apply. And I think that consistent telegraphing of jumps should be penalized, though I don't mind it for the most difficult jump in the skater's repertoire.

    However, what I love is to watch programs that are choreographed to use edges, steps, turns, and highlight moves in a coherent whole, with the jumps woven in as highlights within the fabric of the program rather than set off as isolated elements.

    If the former skater were to skate a runthrough of the program with just single jumps, there would be nothing to watch but a bunch of empty stroking and single jumps. If the latter did the same, we'd have an interesting program to watch, despite the unimpressive jumps.

    So I do think the rules etc. should encourage skaters to skate programs and not just land jumps. What we really want is for them to do both together.

    From a strategic standpoint on the skater's end, it may make more sense to skate boring empty programs to allow them to land the jumps more consistently. However, a skater who aspires to score as high as possible may challenge him/herself with a more complex program and need to work up to skating it clean(ish) by the end of the season by experiencing some rough performances earlier in the season. And a skater who is just inconsistent in general and likely to miss some jumps regardless of the entrances may do better by focusing on earning points in PCS to make up for the inevitable jump errors -- better a well-choreographed program with errors than a poorly choreographed program with the same errors.

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