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Thread: Davis & White to regain World title?

  1. #106
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    True, but not quite true. Soviets skaters were professionals, trained from the childhood and boosted by communist system. At that time American skaters (and many European skaters) were not professionals. That was one of the reasons why Soviet skaters won. Soviet skaters were better but that was because they weren't amateurs.

  2. #107
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    And Soviet skaters stayed together because they had to. There was no choice, so no partner shopping.

  3. #108
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    D&W's few programs put all of the old school Russian pairs to shame. I can't imagine any single one of them skating to a D&W programs without puking, passing out, dying on the ice at the end. They were never in the same league technically, although people still think the theatric dramas they amped up somehow make them more "artistic" Yeah, whatever.

  4. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by tulosai View Post
    Torvill and Dean are British. That means they are European, not North American.
    I know they're British that's not what I was saying. "By north Americans" meant audiences and commentators in America not the team of t/d.

  5. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by FlattFan View Post
    D&W's few programs put all of the old school Russian pairs to shame. I can't imagine any single one of them skating to a D&W programs without puking, passing out, dying on the ice at the end. They were never in the same league technically, although people still think the theatric dramas they amped up somehow make them more "artistic" Yeah, whatever.
    Maybe some like Bestiamanova & Bukin or Usova & Zhulin. However Klimova & Ponomarenko, Gritschuk & Platov, and Krylova & Ovsiannikov all skated incredibly difficult programs, and did so with amazing power, command, and a larger than life quality.

  6. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by pangtongfan View Post
    Maybe some like Bestiamanova & Bukin or Usova & Zhulin. However Klimova & Ponomarenko, Gritschuk & Platov, and Krylova & Ovsiannikov all skated incredibly difficult programs, and did so with amazing power, command, and a larger than life quality.
    And the women had better lines and positions than Meryl, while they were at it

    It's worth noting that dance teams in the past had to put a lot more time and effort into training CDs. We see teams now struggle to hit the required points when all they have to do is patterns in the SD, but up until a decade ago, teams did two CDs in competition. I don't know if it's comparable to training figures, but surely it would have affected the training and its focus.

    I don't see much point in comparing difficulty between eras when the program requirements were so different.

  7. #112
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    Actually, the old timers didn't hit the key points, as currently described, in the CD's. Platov gave a rather amusing interview about it, re that wide stepped Choctaw in the rhumba last year.

    For that matter, there is that infamous video of Tracy Wilson talking about Grishuk & Platov in the GoldenWaltz prolonging a step to get nice toe point vs Bourne & Kraatz not having their legs line up in the same steps. G&P would have lost the key point for Timing (and as it happens, B&K were at least at one point, not on the correct edge, and they wouldn't get the key point either), provided the step highlighted had been selected as a key point that year (they change).

    Because the rules are different, it really is difficult to compare.

  8. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    Actually, the old timers didn't hit the key points, as currently described, in the CD's. Platov gave a rather amusing interview about it, re that wide stepped Choctaw in the rhumba last year.

    For that matter, there is that infamous video of Tracy Wilson talking about Grishuk & Platov in the GoldenWaltz prolonging a step to get nice toe point vs Bourne & Kraatz not having their legs line up in the same steps. G&P would have lost the key point for Timing (and as it happens, B&K were at least at one point, not on the correct edge, and they wouldn't get the key point either), provided the step highlighted had been selected as a key point that year (they change).

    Because the rules are different, it really is difficult to compare.
    I actually knew this, but thanks for adding the extra information. What I was trying to get at is that CDs are not an afterthought, and training them was demanding and likely cut into the time that could be devoted to other things. Today the skaters skaters have very specific things they need to do in the SD patterns, yet even with all the feedback and guidelines, they still don't find it easy (we saw some of the reactions to the Finnstep, which Petri Kokko has described as not that difficult!). In the past skaters didn't have these sorts of stringent requirements, but that also meant that the judges had any number of things that they could pick on if they were so inclined.

    I think that despite our disagreements about the merits of different teams, we can both agree that ice dance was/is demanding under both systems, and making it to the top requires a lot of talent and hard work - just not necessarily directed at the same aspects of one's skating.

  9. #114
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Yes, that is absolutely something we can agree on. And I think many of the teams of the past would have had no problem with excelling in the current system, if they had been brought up on it, although some would have had to be very clever and very dedicated to avoid the back and knee problems experienced by skaters like Domnina &Shabalin, who were built like the old time dancers, and so had difficulty with the lifts required today.

    And I rewatch a lot of the old routines, and a lot of the new ones.

    I hope we can agree, at least generically, that some good dances have been produced in both eras, even if we might not agree on the selection of dances.

  10. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    I hope we can agree, at least generically, that some good dances have been produced in both eras, even if we might not agree on the selection of dances.
    Absolutely. I have my issues with the IJS, but I think it has had both positive and negative effects, not just one or the other. There are certainly programs from the past decade that I very much enjoyed and like to rewatch - by both European and NA teams.

  11. #116
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Yes, and I have programs by both North American & European teams that I rewatch from the current era, as well. But I have to admit to watching some North American teams from the old days, too, even though they weren't medal winners.

  12. #117
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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    Yes, that is absolutely something we can agree on. And I think many of the teams of the past would have had no problem with excelling in the current system, if they had been brought up on it, although some would have had to be very clever and very dedicated to avoid the back and knee problems experienced by skaters like Domnina &Shabalin, who were built like the old time dancers, and so had difficulty with the lifts required today.

    And I rewatch a lot of the old routines, and a lot of the new ones.

    I hope we can agree, at least generically, that some good dances have been produced in both eras, even if we might not agree on the selection of dances.
    I agree that you can't compare, and anyway who would want to? The ice dancers of that day gave us gooseflesh with their most stunning programs just as much as the teams of the present do now. It would be like looking at today's skaters in all disciplines and saying, "Why get excited when we know that in the future, there will be jumpers who will put these folks to shame." Where's the fun in that?

    I do have a question, Doris. What do you mean that D/S were "built like the old-time dancers" and so would have difficulty with the lifts required today? Are you saying that there has to be more of a height differential or something? I know that's been true in pairs since the eighties or so. I know that in the case of some American pair skaters of the past, there was almost no height differential (I'm thinking of Tai and Randy and JoJo Starbuck and Ken Shelley) between the man and the lady, and that would be just about impossible nowadays. Is that true of ice dance now as well?

  13. #118
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Both Domnina & Shabalin were impressively tall skaters, and also did not have a huge height difference between them. In the old days,, most ice dance ladies were quite tall; now, not so much. D&S's size and heigh difference would have been thought ideal.

    Oksana's ISU bio says she is 173 cm tall, Maxim's that he is 183 cm tall.
    http://www.isuresults.com/bios/isufs00006187.htm

    For my feeble English unit brain, that is she is a little over 5'8" and he is a hair over 6 feet, and there is only 4 inches difference between the two.

    The kind of lifts done today are very difficult given such a big lady, and the man not that much taller. It was hard on Maxim's body to do those level 4 lifts. I would not be surprised whether some of the magnificient pairs of the past would have had trouble.

    If they started early, I'm sure they could have learned twizzles (more than 2) and better dance spins. But I would not be surprised to see them have the kind of trouble with lifts that Faiella & Scali had (falls) and Domnina & Shabalin (injuries).

  14. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    For my feeble English unit brain, that is she is a little over 5'8" and he is a hair over 6 feet, and there is only 4 inches difference between the two.

    The kind of lifts done today are very difficult given such a big lady, and the man not that much taller. It was hard on Maxim's body to do those level 4 lifts. I would not be surprised whether some of the magnificient pairs of the past would have had trouble.
    Yes, you translated the heights correctly. Domnina is very tall for an ice dancer, and Shabalin, while taller, isn't that much taller. Her height was certainly shown to advantage at times, but it probably made things more difficult for them. It's worth noting that Tanith Belbin is also on the tall side (5'6'' - the ISU bio is wrong), and I wonder if some of Ben's back problems might be linked to that; and V/M are now quite close in height, and we've seen some of the difficulties they've had.

    In that respect, D/W are very much suited to the demands of the current system, because while the height difference between them isn't huge, it's big enough - and Meryl is strong but quite petite.

  15. #120
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    Thanks for the explanation, Doris and Buttercup.

    I'm sort of sorry in a way. I loved that there was a branch of skating where the girls had the possibility of variation in physique. Is ice dancing going to turn into tiny girl-carried-by-tall-man, like pairs skating? There's an emotional element in ice dancing that's best expressed between a couple that looks as if they're at the same stage of life. Heaven forbid that we end up with those man-child combinations that have little chance of eye-to-eye contact. Though I love Meryl and Charlie, I also love couples like Krylova/Ofsiannikov, Klimova/Ponomarenko, and Denkova/Staviskiy.
    Last edited by Olympia; 02-17-2013 at 03:17 PM.

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