Sometimes bad skating happens to good people...
I don't necessarily feel she is overhyped. She is 6th (?) in the World, which is quite a feat for your first Sr.Worlds. She can be hit or miss, she's not a sure thing yet. Her programs this season are not showing her to her best, but I've been disappointed in others' programs this season too. When she's on and lands her elements it is pretty spectacular.
Gracie Who? Since the die down about the coaching situation, she is very much under the radar and not really being talked about much as far as I can tell.
She probably likes being under the radar after all the hype of the last 20 months or so. Now she can do the work that needs to be done and make the Olympic team which should be her one and only goal this season.
Forever stuck on those steps
This is actually a very true thing to say, and not even just for Gracie - probably this fits more skaters then not. Hyping and hating seem to be more fun than just sticking to the simple truth
Originally Posted by penguin
She probably fuels the hype a little with her posted videos doing crazy difficult jump combinations in practice. People expect this level and when she doesn't deliver it is especially disappointing, in that it makes her errors even more inexplicable.
Yes, and there seems to be a particular pattern with young talent: overhype them when they first arrive on the scene, then dismiss them entirely when they fail to dazzle everyone and win medals left and right. They're put on a pedestal, then come crashing down. A few bad competitions? They're a headcase who will never amount to anything in the competitive world. Lackluster presentation? They must have no capacity to give engaging, memorable performances, and never will. Body changes causing some struggling with jumps? Stick a fork in 'em; they're done.
Originally Posted by Li'Kitsu
None of which is true. Skaters have struggled for quite some time with one or more of the above and later went on to have some success. Look at Kostner and how long she struggled on the international scene before finding consistency. Look at "robotic" skaters like Shen and Zhao or Angela "Refrigerator Break" Nikodinov, and the great strides they eventually made in the presentation side of things. There's no reason to think because Gracie or anyone else is struggling with these things now, that she has no hope.
But people keep thinking in these extremes, no matter how many contradicting examples they see. Such is the way of the world, I suppose.
You said it. Some skating fans are cruel, fickle, and irrational. They expect to see success in a skater and then when they don't live up to their expectations they get pretty nasty. And when a skater does really well, then they expect that skater to be that good until they retire and at the first signs of weakness they start to tear them down.
Originally Posted by Rachmaninoff
It really ruins the sport when people are so appallingly scathing about athletes. It's not their job to make you happy, and with the hours of work and money spent, it's not like they're not trying their best either.
I also don't understand why Gracie is getting such a bad rep from some people when she's had pretty good results last season even if they were up and down. US Nationals proved she's certainly one of the best the US has to offer and to be 3rd place of the non-YuNa/Carolina/Mao's at Worlds isn't bad.
I wouldn't go so far as to call her a "headcase" - yes, she has been up-and-down (trending towards up at the end of the season). I don't think this is unusual for a skater making the transition to the top level. Look at Kostner, look at Ando, look at Osmond, look at Tuktamysheva...heck, look at Wagner. All have either experienced or are experiencing similar up/down trends in their competitive history.
Originally Posted by Selene
I've only followed this stuff for 11 years, but seems to me that skaters like Kim (i.e. those who just show up and dominate throughout) are the exception, not the rule.
Yup...never ends. Vicious cycle. Actually, seems to be the skating community at large that's guilty of this...it's not always limited to just fans.
Originally Posted by Rachmaninoff
Kim stands alone as someone who has never been off the podium her entire senior career. I could not find a single women in the last 30 years or so who had a similar record. Hey, Katrina Witt finished 14th at her first Europeans!
Originally Posted by R.D.
As for distant past: Only one woman: Barbara Ann Scott has had a similar record when she skated from 1941 to 1948.
Sonie Henie finished 8th at her first Olympics. Carol Heiss came close -- she was OTP only once, when she finished 4th at the 1953 World Championships (Tenny Albright was close too, only one 6th place Worlds (1951) and a WD in 1952 among a whole bunch of podium finished.
Yeah, and I'd even say most skaters period have ups and downs, whether they're just entering top level or they've been to two or three Olympics. There really aren't too many Michelle Kwans or Yu Na Kims around (and even they had their disappointments, although they still ended up on the podium for the most part anyway).
Originally Posted by R.D.
Well, just to be fair, there may have been a few others in that category if they were forced to wait until age 15/16 to enter the senior ranks. Michelle Kwan, as the most obvious example, wasn't on top at her first senior worlds, but she was only 13 at the time. Tara Lipinski and Sarah Hughes were also both 13 at their first senior worlds. Sonja Henie was 11 at her first Olympics.
Originally Posted by Mrs. P
Of course, the main point still stands: Yu Na Kim is a rare bird.
I think the main reason that so much attention has been devoted to Gracie, following her successful LP at Nationals and a good placement at Worlds, is that US skating fans and the skating establishment has never been 100% sold on Ashley Wagner as the flag-bearer. Ashley is good, but...
Now that Gracie hype has leveled off, we are looking ever younger. We have a thread on this very forum titled, "Polina Edmonds is better than Gracie and is the best US lady by far!"
I agree with that. Wagner is a step up on Flattzzz as U.S #1, but she also isnt enough to fully satisfy many people. Especialy with her failure thus far to win a World medal. So they are still constantly searching for the next big thing. If they cant find the next Michelle Kwan, even the next Sasha Cohen (preferably getting that gold at some point though) will do. Someone who will capture American public interest in U.S ladies again, that is what they need and want, and are desperately (maybe a little too hard) seeking.
Originally Posted by Mathman
To be fair, she's only been good in the past two seasons, and ended up 4th and 5th. Plus her 5th was in a field with Yu Na/Mao/Carolina, so she can hardly be blamed for being off the podium (peaked too early last season). She had a much better shot a year before but lost it in the SP. She's still had excellent results (the best of any US lady last year by far) -- she had 2 GP wins and a silver at the GPF, and should make a push for Sochi bronze. Certainly when the favourites retire after the Olympics or have their post-Olympics slump she'll be a favourite for a World medal. To look for the next Kwan (especially when Kwan was lucky enough to not need 3-3 combos to win) is a bit short sighted.
Originally Posted by pangtongfan
It's always nice to look for the next Kwan, Ito, or Kim, but it's not really fair to compare up and coming skaters to them and put these expectations that they will be the next ________, and if they don't meet those expectations in a few seasons, then they go out with the bathwater and people look to the next best thing. That's pretty brutal. These are athletes and human beings, not pieces of clothing that are suddenly in-season and then you toss them out.
Well, it wasn't like the top 3 were just there as place holders. Kim had 3x3 in both programs, Asada had 3A, executed 7/8 triples, Kostner had 3x3 in both programs.
Originally Posted by CanadianSkaterGuy
Don't think anyone thought she should be on the podium. The problem people had was she talked big talk about big combos, and didn't deliver. If the better skaters had to bring it to big competition, who is she to think she can do 2 triples in the SP, and 6 triples in the LP and be anywhere near the podium.
Rejoicing in the land of Kwan
I don't think Gracie is as hyped a year later as she was around this time last year when everyone was 100% positive she was the second coming. I think people can see her for what she is now: a skater who is still trying to grow and figure it out.
Judging Gracie by the expectations that were heaped upon her last year, she failed considerably. The way she was hyped coming into last season I was expecting her to win both of her GP events, make the Final, win nationals and place top 5 at worlds. She did none of that.
Judging Gracie by the standards that the majority of debuting seniors are held to, she had a very good season. She medaled at one of her events (it took Mirai and Agnes multiple seasons before they medaled at an event), won silver at nationals and placed 6th at worlds. Those are very good accomplishments for a debut season. I think the outcome of last season has erased the fantasy and injected a strong dose of reality into most overzealous Gracie fans. She's not soup yet. She has the talent but she needs work and now that everyone knows that, I think people will ease up a little and give her some time.
I'm sure Frank is the reason Gracie has faded from the spotlight since he officially became her coach and that's the way it should be. They need time to adjust to their situation. They've got a little over two weeks before Gracie is thrown into the spotlight at Skate Canada and, because she is with Frank, there will be expectations for her there as well. I'm interested to see what improvements (if any) she's made under him so far...