Abbott could medal at Olympics a la Paul Wylie- absolutely.
Aaron is struggling dreadfully right now.
If we had to pick the team today, it would have to be Abbott and Rippon. But we'll know a lot more after we see Jason Brown and Josh Ferris in the next few weeks.
There are so many US men I really like (and it will be a dogfight @ Nats for those 2 spots). I would like it to be Max & Ross. If Ross doesn't make it, I'd love to see Adam get the spot.
Max and Ricky. It is a bit disconcerting to see Max struggle at the moment:(
Evan and Stephen
At this point, I think Max & Adam are the best bet. But I am so looking forward to our nationals. They'll be exciting no matter who makes the Olympic team & everyone should be much improved by then.
It really hurts to see Max struggle now... and I think it's become more obvious that while Max's scoring potential is much higher than Abbott, should Max bomb (as he has so far) his PCS takes a huge hit... when Jeremy bombs his PCS will still be enough for him to outscore Max.
Right now, Rippon should certainly be the frontrunner. Max's inability to land his quads and Jeremy regaining his quad (albeit not very consistently), has made Abbott the favourite for the 2nd spot, IMO. Farris has the potential but isn't entirely delivering. Brown is an amazing skater, but his lack of a quad essentially puts him in the same boat as Abbott.
Does the US federation have any goals for their men in Sochi? Obviously they can't expect individual medals, but perhaps there's some strategy for the team event?
Adam! And Jeremy, although he can run hot or cold. But definitely Adam!
I'm kinda underwhelmed with the US men this season. Max is understandably struggling... and Jeremy and Adam are unproven at best and their programs leave a lot to be desired (Free Programs anyway) due to the fact that the music is so soft. I know I'm falling for stereotypes but the music is so uninspired. It isn't powerful or "heroic" (can't think of the word I really want to use). The women have more powerful music than they do. It's just... blah... There's no excitement, which is what I like to see in Men's skating.
That said, it is true that in the NHK SP, Abbott outscored and outplaced Max. And that Abbott's NHK SP outscored Max's Skate America SP.
But IMHO, those results do not tell the whole story.
The comparison of Max at NHK (7th place) vs. Abbott at Skate Canada International (6th place):
Max had higher scores (SP, FS, and overall), although Abbott had higher placements.
Max (NHK): SP 76.21 (8th) + FS 147.14 (7th) = 223.35
Abbott (SCI): SP 74.58 (4th) + FS 141.37 (6th) = 215.95
And the comparison of their GP bronze medal results:
Max (Skate America): SP 75.91 (6th) + FS 162.45 (2nd) = 238.36
Abbott (NHK): SP 78.78 (7th) + FS 158.63 (3rd) = 237.41
Max has his work cut out for him at Nats, but I still have high hopes for him.
Right now it seems all the men are bunched together, with no one so far really stepping up. My dream team would be Jason and Josh for them to get the experience. (As someone earlier in the thread pointed out, potentially the battle to make the Olympic team in 2018 will be just as crowded as this season.)
I've read all the comments in this thread and must say that I'm pretty surprised how so many of you mentioned Max as their favourite for the Olympic team. Compared to many of the top skaters in the US, I find his skating pretty awful to watch. IMO, there's only his jumps that are amazing (if he even nails them...). Based on the few interviews I've read, Max seems like a really sweet guy and I have nothing against him, but his skating ->