Kanako is just lovely. She just cannot retire. Japan will have NOTHING left. Baby Miyahara will not do it for me, sorry.
^Yes, don't really see the it-factor in Satoko. Her jumps are tiny. It's always strange to me that Kanako has so many problems with underrotation when to me it seems she has big powerful jumps. But that's anotherfactor of figure skating that leaves me puzzled a lot, skaters loose 20 points and I just don't see it. It is certainly not the way to get more fans into figure skating.
I don't think you have to have the mindest "I'd die for Gold" to win competitions. I don't think that Carolina Kostner for example thinks "I would do anything for the Gold!" and Kanako has already won competitions! I think living a normal life with going to university, having a laugh with friends, her family and being in Japan are simply more important to Kanako. For me that's the healthiest lifestyle, because you never know what happens if your skating career stops. Some seem to fall into a big hole. She is critzised for it, I think even Yamada-coach said that Kanako lacks ambition. But what can you do? I for one am glad she didn't go to BOrser. I doubt I would like her programs as much, and not every skater in the World should be trained by North America/Russian coaches. I like to see japanese coaches on the World Stage, so that they maybe one day can even make a name for themselves internationally. So that skaters from other countries come to them instead. It will be a slow process, but I think it can be done. Kanako herself said she would actually like to be a coach! I'm glad that she's the faithful type, even if that might mean she won't win any title in her remaining career. (And I'm not convinced. I mean, she obviously knows her weaknesses and her team will work on them)
^Yes Kanako by talent and competitive pedigree (only Japanese lady besides Mao to win a senior international title I think in the last two years or so) should be the Japanese no. 1 if Mao retires. I hope the JSF fully backs her up. So much uncertainty re the Japanese ladies right now!
^Oh thank you for the clarification. I hope Kanako will help prove them wrong (re Asian women not anymore making it to the podium).
It would be lovely to watch Kanako and Yuzuru skate together in the future. They just seem to have a genuine relationship.
^They skated together in recent ice shows but in a group number. At the Worlds gala, Yuzuru was paired with Mao and then Julia, while Kanako I think was paired with Tatsuki. I hope we get to see her and Yuzuru together (just the two of them) on ice at least one more time before Kanako retires (says she'll stay on for one more season though I hope she'll continue until the 2018 Olympics). I would love to is to see them both as national champions this year.