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Thread: Figure skating needs CPR

  1. #76
    Celebrating the Excellence of #VirtueMoir golden411's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robeye View Post
    -Let's make a small wager. If, at some point, Gracie Gold becomes Olympic champion, I predict that figure skating's popularity in the US will soar to levels not seen since Michelle Kwan.

    Sorry, I'm not mocking the possibility that Gold might be a future Olympic champion.
    But if she does snag Olympic gold, I do not think that her success will cause a dramatic increase in figure skating's popularity [ETA: in the U.S.]. At best, maybe a small and temporary boost, IMHO. (And I'm American.)
    By the way, does your prediction apply only to Gold? What if an American lady other than Gold wins the 2018 Olympics?

    Quote Originally Posted by Robeye View Post
    How to measure this? I will operationalize the prediction in a confirmable way: Gracie would then become one of the top 10 highest paid female athletes in the world. ....
    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I will take that bet. The top ten highest paid female athletes last year were seven tennis players, race car driver Danica Patrick, Yuna Kim (seventh at 7 to 9 million dollars) and, in tenth place, a golfer at about 6 million. Gracie would essentially have to earn as much as Kim to make the list.

    On the men's list, there is no one in an Olympic sport. (Boxer Floyd Mayweather is number 1 at 85 million -- all from winning two fights, 0 from endorsements). I believe that, as the Olympics gradually fade away -- especially the winter Olympics -- no Olympic athlete will ever make the list, Kim being a astonishing anomaly.
    Mathman, any idea how much Nastia Liukin and Gabby Douglas have been paid since winning their all-around gymnastics golds at the Olympics?
    Way less than Kim, no doubt.
    And would you guess that the earning power of an American lady who wins the Olympic skating gold would be approx. in the same range?

  2. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I will take that bet. The top ten highest paid female athletes last year were seven tennis players, race car driver Danica Patrick, Yuna Kim (seventh at 7 to 9 million dollars) and, in tenth place, a golfer at about 6 million. Gracie would essentially have to earn as much as Kim to make the list.
    Well the difference there is that Gracie has more talent in her pinkie fingernail than Danica Patrick could ever hope to have in a whole lifetime of bodies...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I will take that bet. The top ten highest paid female athletes last year were seven tennis players, race car driver Danica Patrick, Yuna Kim (seventh at 7 to 9 million dollars) and, in tenth place, a golfer at about 6 million. Gracie would essentially have to earn as much as Kim to make the list.

    On the men's list, there is no one in an Olympic sport. (Boxer Floyd Mayweather is number 1 at 85 million -- all from winning two fights, 0 from endorsements). I believe that, as the Olympics gradually fade away -- especially the winter Olympics -- no Olympic athlete will ever make the list, Kim being a astonishing anomaly.
    Good stuff . Amazing how a little thing like this provides an extra bit of, how shall I say, frisson, perhaps? when contemplating future Olympic results .

    I will go out on a limb and reiterate: a Gracie Gold Olympic win (which is a conditional, not part of my prediction, and certainly not for 2014, although the probability is not zero) will see her making at least 7 million dollars in the 12 months that follow.

    It is highly likely, though, that we may have to wait until 2018 to see who will be drinking Pilsner Urquell for free.

    And no abusing your awesome powers as a mod to 'inadvertently' delete this post at a later date .

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    Quote Originally Posted by golden411 View Post

    Sorry, I'm not mocking the possibility that Gold might be a future Olympic champion.
    But if she does snag Olympic gold, I do not think that her success will cause a dramatic increase in figure skating's popularity. At best, maybe a small and temporary boost, IMHO. (And I'm American.)
    By the way, does your prediction apply only to Gold? What if an American lady other than Gold wins the 2018 Olympics?





    Mathman, any idea how much Nastia Liukin and Gabby Douglas have been paid since winning their all-around gymnastics golds at the Olympics?
    Way less than Kim, no doubt.
    And would you guess that the earning power of an American lady who wins the Olympic skating gold would be approx. in the same range?
    My own personal view is that, while a ladies OGM in figure skating will result in significant financial rewards for just about any skater, there is a fairly wide high-low range. Given Gracie's young, pretty, blonde, wholesome, corn-fed, Midwestern and All-American image, the sky will be the limit for her post-OGM commercial potential. If she is not tainted by scandal during that time, she'll have to fight off would-be sponsors with a stick, and will, I think, make far more than the gymnasts you mentioned.

    This is, of course, purely ignorant speculation on my part, but one that I'm willing to tangibly back.

  5. #80
    At the rink. Again. mskater93's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy View Post
    I disagree chuckm... all skaters should be equally penalized for falls on the same scale. Falls shouldn't have tiered severity just to keep the competition closer together, and certainly not to penalize skaters for actually having a program that incorporates more difficulty in choreography/transitions/jumps/etc. If anything, a skater that has an easier program to execute should be penalized more for falling.
    In your scenario of an easier program getting more penalized for falling, then Juvenile level skaters should take the biggest hit because their programs are the easiest. I completely disagree with this. You could have a Juvenile skater who's inconsistent on the harder skills at that level (and is maybe working on skills for being a competitive Intermediate while getting consistency on those super-hard juvenile level elements) who takes a bigger hit than they do right now for falling on a 2A, gets disgusted with the scoring system because they were the best skater but took a huge hit for the fall when it happens (let's say they fall 3/10 competitions with one of those being Regionals and miss making it to Sectionals but the increased penalty for falls because their program is "easy" compared to Seniors) and quits (it's not out of the realm of possibility at that age) the sport. This skater could have gone on to be one of the very best elite skaters out there, they were working on the really difficult elements at the "right" age and had the right body structure and work ethic...

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    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Robeye View Post
    My own personal view is that, while a ladies OGM in figure skating will result in significant financial rewards for just about any skater, there is a fairly wide high-low range. Given Gracie's young, pretty, blonde, wholesome, corn-fed, Midwestern and All-American image, the sky will be the limit for her post-OGM commercial potential. If she is not tainted by scandal during that time, she'll have to fight off would-be sponsors with a stick, and will, I think, make far more than the gymnasts you mentioned.
    That's what I am wondering. I don't think corn-fed and wholesome sells any more, or even pretty.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    That's what I am wondering. I don't think corn-fed and wholesome sells any more, or even pretty.
    This. I think all of that is too generic in the Gaga/ Kardashian world we are now in. Generic blonde girls don't sell no matter how pretty. Plus there is the backlash against them even among skating fans. In 2009 and 2011, Alissa Czisny was torn apart on some fan boards for being a pretty white girl and her wins were attributed to nothing but that.

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    Custom Title heyang's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    That's what I am wondering. I don't think corn-fed and wholesome sells any more, or even pretty.
    When Kristi won her OGM, she did not get as many endorsements as anticipated and several parties suggested it was because she is of Asian descent. Of course, this was also before skaters were allowed to sign contracts before 'retiring' and there was some anti-Japan sentiments, as well as her OGM occuring before the figure skating BOOM.

    However, also, consider that Nancy Kerrigan had many more major endorsement deals than Kristi, including Disney. Nancy also may have gotten some of those jobs because of her pre-Olympic celebrity whack and/or from having better representation.

    Michele didn't win OGM, but she has had a lot of endorsements due to her graciousness in 'defeat', her celebrity status as the reserve skater if Tonya were barred from the Olympics and her longevity in the sport.

    However, i don't recall Tara getting huge endorsements post OGM - perhaps because she was a child when she won???

    Sarah - no major endorsements beyond the initial post OGM buzz. Don't know why her story wasn't buzzed into a Cinderella winner. perhaps 'tarnished' somewhat by her results post OGM? or Sarah eschewed the spotlight?

    Kind of hard to second guess since there are a lot of variables involved.

    I think Gracie will get some signficant endorsements if she wins OGM because she is pretty and because it's been a long time since the US had an OGM in Ladies' figure skating.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mskater93 View Post
    In your scenario of an easier program getting more penalized for falling, then Juvenile level skaters should take the biggest hit because their programs are the easiest. I completely disagree with this. You could have a Juvenile skater who's inconsistent on the harder skills at that level (and is maybe working on skills for being a competitive Intermediate while getting consistency on those super-hard juvenile level elements) who takes a bigger hit than they do right now for falling on a 2A, gets disgusted with the scoring system because they were the best skater but took a huge hit for the fall when it happens (let's say they fall 3/10 competitions with one of those being Regionals and miss making it to Sectionals but the increased penalty for falls because their program is "easy" compared to Seniors) and quits (it's not out of the realm of possibility at that age) the sport. This skater could have gone on to be one of the very best elite skaters out there, they were working on the really difficult elements at the "right" age and had the right body structure and work ethic...
    I was being facetious and referring to junior/senior level skating. A fall should come at the same price to all skaters. And I think your scenario is really hypothetical. Plenty of skaters who do harder jumps place lower than skaters who perform cleanly but have easier jumps. Skaters should do the jumps that they're capable of. If they fell on their double axel, the would also have the -3's in GOE, and at juvenile levels (in Canada at least) the falls are less severe at lower levels and you get bonuses for rotated triples.

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    Quote Originally Posted by karne View Post
    Well the difference there is that Gracie has more talent in her pinkie fingernail than Danica Patrick could ever hope to have in a whole lifetime of bodies...
    Do you even know who Danica Patrick is? If you did, you'd realise how insulting that statement is. Danica is the most successful woman in the history of car racing. You don't understand the talent, toughness, and mental fortitude that it takes to be a race car driver - especially one that competes against men. She's the only woman to actually win an indy car series against men, placed 3rd in the Indy 500, and was the first woman to win a NASCAR pole and turned in the fastest qualifying lap (of a man or woman) in the Daytona 500 since 1990. Gracie will be lucky to even be half the talent and phenomenon that Danica Patrick is. Hah, and worse, you picked the fingers as a point of comparison.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    I will take that bet. The top ten highest paid female athletes last year were seven tennis players, race car driver Danica Patrick, Yuna Kim (seventh at 7 to 9 million dollars) and, in tenth place, a golfer at about 6 million. Gracie would essentially have to earn as much as Kim to make the list.

    On the men's list, there is no one in an Olympic sport. (Boxer Floyd Mayweather is number 1 at 85 million -- all from winning two fights, 0 from endorsements). I believe that, as the Olympics gradually fade away -- especially the winter Olympics -- no Olympic athlete will ever make the list, Kim being a astonishing anomaly.
    My jaw dropped at Floyd Mayweather, except then I remembered reading years ago that boxing was actually the highest paid sport of all. Kind of amazing, when you think of it, because it's not the mainstream sport it was in the thirties (remember all those movies with "pugs" as the main or important characters) or even the sixties, with Ali. When most people think "household name sports hero" these days, Floyd Mayweather would not be the first name out of their mouths.

    Yeah, skating in this country, unless someone is as glamorous as Kim and becomes a media star as well as a star athlete, will not net anyone, even a ladies' singles OGM winner, the kind of bonanza that the other athletes on that list take in.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Robeye View Post
    My own personal view is that, while a ladies OGM in figure skating will result in significant financial rewards for just about any skater, there is a fairly wide high-low range. Given Gracie's young, pretty, blonde, wholesome, corn-fed, Midwestern and All-American image, the sky will be the limit for her post-OGM commercial potential. If she is not tainted by scandal during that time, she'll have to fight off would-be sponsors with a stick, and will, I think, make far more than the gymnasts you mentioned.

    This is, of course, purely ignorant speculation on my part, but one that I'm willing to tangibly back.
    I hope that in 2013/2014/2018, hair color -- artificial or otherwise -- is 100% irrelevant.

    And compared to other American ladies, Gold does not have any kind of monopoly on prettiness. (Or on "All-American"-ness, whatever the heck that means.)

    Perhaps McKayla Maroney is the gymnast who is the best model for what might help American skating's popularity.
    She happens to be extremely pretty, but her refreshing personality and candor -- not to mention her excellence in her sport -- are what captured her country's (and even the world's) imagination.

    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    That's what I am wondering. I don't think corn-fed and wholesome sells any more, or even pretty.
    Agree. Shaun White was mentioned in another thread on basically the same subject. Other than his half-pipe dominance, I think his "light-up-the-room" personal charm explains his popularity more than his distinctive looks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by golden411 View Post
    Mathman, any idea how much Nastia Liukin and Gabby Douglas have been paid since winning their all-around gymnastics golds at the Olympics?

    Way less than Kim, no doubt.

    And would you guess that the earning power of an American lady who wins the Olympic skating gold would be approx. in the same range?
    I don't think any skater of any nationality will ever match the Yuna Kim phenomenon.

    Sonia Henie was reportedly worth 50 million dollars when she died. This was back in the 1960s when 50 million dollars was actually some money. She got rich from movies and real estate investments. When Janet Lynn signed with Ice Follies she was the highest paid woman athlete in the world for one year. Dorothy Hamill was immensely popular, but later lost a substantial amount of money when she invested in Ice Capades.

    I think the richest U.S. ice skater is Scott hamilton. I don't know if this web site knows what it's talking about, but they have Scott's net worth pegged at 30 million dollars.

    http://www.celebritynetworth.com/dl/...ski-net-worth/

    Here are some others.

    Brian Boitano - 18 million
    Kristi Yamaguchi - 18 million
    Evan Lysacek - 10 million (Evan's my guy, but I don't believe it. )
    Peggy Fleming - 8 million

    Michelle Kwan - 8 million. (It doesn't say how much Mrs. Claiborne Pell IV is worth, but "old money" counts twice. By the way, Mr. Pell has just completed the White House Fellowship that he beat Michelle out of -- as Michelle said, "I lost the fellowship but I got the fellow" -- and is now serving in the U.S. Department of Education in charge of international and foreign language instruction. Pell is fluent in Arabic, Chinese, and Spanish.

    Dorothy Hamill - 5 million
    Tara Lipinski - 4 million

    U.S. men skaters are doing as well as the ladies!

    Gabby Douglas - 3 million
    Shawn Johnson - 9 million
    Nastia Liukin - 2 million

    Shaun White - 20 million

    Mathman -- negative $3.29.
    Last edited by Mathman; 05-09-2013 at 03:59 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy View Post
    Do you even know who Danica Patrick is? If you did, you'd realise how insulting that statement is. Danica is the most successful woman in the history of car racing. You don't understand the talent, toughness, and mental fortitude that it takes to be a race car driver - especially one that competes against men. She's the only woman to actually win an indy car series against men, placed 3rd in the Indy 500, and was the first woman to win a NASCAR pole and turned in the fastest qualifying lap (of a man or woman) in the Daytona 500 since 1990. Gracie will be lucky to even be half the talent and phenomenon that Danica Patrick is. Hah, and worse, you picked the fingers as a point of comparison.
    Don't you patronise me pal. Of course I know who frigging Danica Patrick is. I've been watching and been involved with motorsport since I was four years old. Danica Patrick is one of the most over-hyped, over-rated, useless drivers I've ever seen. Her career is based solely on the fact that she apparently looks good in a bikini. She's a rubbish driver. Her pole at the Daytona 500 was pure car. Notice how she hasn't done anything else since? There are other women in motorsport who are far more deserving of the attention and accolades that Patrick gets. Look at Johanna Long in Nationwide. Improving steadily and surely, never making a big fuss or a big deal over the fact that she's a woman, just focusing solely on racing. Look at Pippa Mann and Simona de Silvestra in Indycar. I have the highest respect for de Silvestra because last year she had a massive shunt in Indy 500 practice, put her hand up and admitted it was her fault, and driving with major burns and other injuries, qualified for the Indy 500. Not exactly something your run-of-the-mill male racing driver does all that often either!

    Don't you ever be condescending towards me about motorsport, pal. I may be a girl. But I KNOW motorsport. More than you can say I'm sure.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    That's what I am wondering. I don't think corn-fed and wholesome sells any more, or even pretty.
    Now you're scaring me. You're beginning to sound like Mr. Potter of Bedford Falls .

    Joking aside, my view is not that corn-fed and wholesome doesn't sell; it's that it's no longer the only thing that sells. There is no question that a wider range of traits, in looks/ethnicity/personality/etc. are now potentially marketable, reflecting the more diverse composition of America since George Bailey's day.

    The following are some random thoughts addressing the interesting and stimulating points of view of the various posters who have commented on this question, including Mathman, golden411, Olympia, karne, heyang, louisa05, and others:

    IMHO, the combination of corn-fed/wholesome etc. etc. with a ladies figure skating gold medal will be a huge marketing draw, even in this age of audience segmentation. I will even suggest a parallel from Simon Cowell's parallel universe: Jackie Evancho.

    Just a couple of weeks ago, I was watching Susan Boyle's videos on Youtube for the very first time (I'd never heard of her before then; but that first audition vid for "Britain's Got Talent" was astounding, and, I admit, emotionally affecting). She is the poster-child for the "We Are the World", politically correct idea that there is no limit to the type of diversity that can appeal to audiences.

    While exploring the Susan Boyle phenomenon, I happened to see the links to Jackie (who I was also learning about for the very first time; does that sound unbelievable?). I watch these kinds of TV shows only rarely, and have never understood the appeal of the vast majority of so-called winners, but these two were, for me, genuinely interesting. Susan for the back-story, and Jackie because she is the very definition of precocious talent. I mean, at first I thought she was a twenty year old with a hormonal disorder.

    Anyway, the point is this: I understand now that Jackie has become a breakout star. Certainly her vocal talent explains much of her success. But my guess is that her doll-like (and blonde; I don't know whether it's natural or not ) looks, and squeaky-clean, wholesome image were also a key contributor to her appeal and success.

    The marketing archetypes that a Jackie Evancho or a (hypothetically OGM-winning) Gracie Gold represent are still, I think, very much alive and kicking, and to dismiss this is to fail to distinguish between the pragmatically diagnostic and the normatively prescriptive.

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