The ladies should probably be fine for 3 spots, although I think most people are counting on Tuk and Sot to be the ones to garner those 3 spots so really Leonova's placement is irrelevant. However, if Leonova skates well and Sotnikova has a meltdown like she sometimes does then perhaps Leonova will come to the rescue after all. But realistically I expect the other two girls to beat her, they have momentum on their side at this point and Leonova does not - plus that FS is just dreary and dreadful I mean, Sotnikova's is tacky, but at least she sells it and has a lot of pep...
I don't think Russia has the best shot though a shot at two mens and three ladies. I think the ladies are too inconsistent. They will find it tough for top 5 with Carolina, Mao and Yuna and undoubtedly at least one other Japanese lady (Suzuki probably) then they would have to beat Wagner and Gold as well - not easy. this assumes Osmond isn't in top 5 or the Chinese lady. Lucky Korpi isn't there too.
And the fact that leonova has 5 triples. But it's true that sotnikova could single all her flips. It's very possible. You dont know when she will actually land a triple flip. So Liza may be the higher ranking skater. And leonova needs to be flawless like 2012 worlds. But 3 ladies is still possible but 2 ladies and 1 man for sochi may be more likely than 3 ladies and 2 men.
That would be such a shame if there were only 2 ladies spots though considering the insane depth in Russian ladies right now! And Sotnikova popped the 3f in her FS at Euros but she did do it in the SP there and also at Russian Nationals, and she seems to be more comfortable with 3lz-3t and 2a-3t combos now as compared to earlier in the season. I'm confused why she does not try for a 3lz or 3lo in the SP though considering the fits she's been having with 3f as of late? I know she flutzes but a 3fz is still worth way more than a 1f! As for Liza, SP has not been a strength for her this season, I don't worry about the FS, but I think her PCS will be a lot better if she can make the final flight for FS as opposed to penultimate, and with this lineup, that will probably mean she needs a clean SP. It will be interesting to see what happens.
Anyways Kovtun has been so on with his jumps this season I think if he skates like he has been recently he should make top 10. Song is going instead of Yan so I think Kovtun comes out ahead there and then realistically he'll probably beat Miner too, Ross has bad technique on his 3a and 4s which seems to catch up with him in pressure situations, plus he only skated a clean SP once this season. Joubert doesn't have lots of content these days, gives up easy points in FS, so realistically I think Kovtun can be 7th with results as:
Brezina could play a factor but he's so inconsistent this season it's hard to predict. Reynolds I think had the SOHL at 4CCs and will get dinged with URs at Worlds and PCS will be lower, Mura was good at 4CC and got hosed in the scores so I think Kovtun can beat him too. I really do not worry about Kovtun that much so long as he delivers his jumps like he has all season.
I used to like her when she was full of spunk and skated with joy, like she did in 2011 Worlds for example. She is not the same skater anymore. I hope she skates well at Worlds, she usually skates her best there. But with the current field she has to be absolutely pristine perfect and others to make mistakes in order to be in top 5 IMO. She is not a world medal material, never has been (last season was one of the weakest field in ladies I can remember).
I was surprised today, because Sotnikova landed every flip she tried at practice (I think)
It must be a jump she feels confident on, because she includes 3 between her two programs. I think it's just a matter of controlling her nerves
In 2012 worlds Leonova had it all. Spins jumps programs steps. She would have been a great world champion based on her Nice skates.
she pops every single Flip!!! : http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uMyZIESJPgI
and that was even a Exhibition, Sotnikova has terrible Flip Technique couple with her being a known headcase
I hope Adelina delivers and it's great to hear she's delivering in practices, but I think she's known to always be incredible in practice so I'm not sure how much that means at this point. Like Gracie Gold, owning practices doesn't necessarily mean she will do well in competition - Gracie was apparently amazing in practice at SC then bombed in competition and again at Nationals, great practices then that mess of a SP. I believe in Adelina but the fact that she's nailing these jumps in practices basically tells us that she's a very talented, powerful jumper - which we already know and has always been the case. If 3f were actually a problem jump for her in training I'm sure she would have replaced it with 3lz or 3lo in her SP by now, the fact that she hasn't makes me think it's some kind of psychological block she has with that jump in competition. I remember Yuna had flip trouble leading into the Olympics - the jump was still as gorgeous and wonderful as ever, she just sometimes over thought it in competition.