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Thread: Skaters who'll be remembered with time as among the greats

  1. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    Similar story, but I got the stares of a whole roomful of people. I was in the TV room of my college dormitory, and a football game was on (American football). In college you're supposed to know about this game, because it's the ultimate college game. Just about every college has a team. In addition there are the professional teams that you're supposed to follow. Not me! I was a city girl and understood only baseball. What was going on on the TV screen that day seemed strangely static to me. Everyone did a lot of standing around on the field. At one point, the announcer said, "First down." A moment later, I asked, "What's a down?"

    You can't imagine the long-suffering looks everyone gave me. I thought they'd tell the administration that I didn't deserve to attend that college!

    After all those years, I still don't know what a down is, so don't ask. I have never watched an entire football game, either live or on TV. I don't root for a team. I'm so glad I found figure skating! Even when there's stuff I don't know or understand, I still love watching it.
    LOL. American football bores me to tears, but it's fun to play deliberately ignorant. After a team goes through its four downs and either scores or kicks it back to the other team, I've been known to say, "That was a really good inning for them, wasn't it?"--just to enjoy the incredulous stares/looks/comments I'll get. And if people think IJS is confusing, they should try to fathom some of the more arcane rules of American football and baseball.

  2. #107
    Custom Title Mathman's Avatar
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    ^ A tip for the ladies: ask your boyfriend to explain the infield fly rule to you. Pretend to be impressed. This makes guys feel all manly.

  3. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    ^ A tip for the ladies: ask your boyfriend to explain the infield fly rule to you. Pretend to be impressed. This makes guys feel all manly.
    As long as the guy doesn't then ask me to explain some of the more difficult aspects of skating!

  4. #109
    Outdated Old Dinosaur
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    I think that Kim's ability to start a dynasty is different from her influence on skating, which is worldwide, not localized. Someone who is that great isn't just a national treasure. She belongs to skating in general, much as Torvill and Dean do. In that sense I suspect that in Kim's case, we don't have to wait for the judgement of later times. Her reputation will endure.
    Misunderstanding... another contributor mentioned that Kim and Asada had "moved countries"... I was responding that Kim's longterm impact on Korean figure skating is less certain. Yes... her personal legacy is pretty solid... but has she shifted the figure skating landscape in Korea for the long haul? I don't know the answer to that.

  5. #110
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mathman View Post
    ^ A tip for the ladies: ask your boyfriend to explain the infield fly rule to you. Pretend to be impressed. This makes guys feel all manly.
    hmmm maybe that's why I've never had a boyfriend... just guy friends... I know too much!

  6. #111
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tonichelle View Post
    hmmm maybe that's why I've never had a boyfriend... just guy friends... I know too much!
    Ah, pshaw! Mr. P likes that his wife knows lots of things. I hope you find someone that appreciates that about you!

  7. #112
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mrs. P View Post
    Ah, pshaw! Mr. P likes that his wife knows lots of things. I hope you find someone that appreciates that about you!
    that makes two of us...

    actually I keep telling people I'm looking for Mr. Right (litterally, though I'll take any and all spellings) so that I can hyphenate my last name and be the "Reitter-Right"... (Righter-Right)... it'd be the best way to win all arguments!

  8. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by TontoK View Post
    Misunderstanding... another contributor mentioned that Kim and Asada had "moved countries"... I was responding that Kim's longterm impact on Korean figure skating is less certain. Yes... her personal legacy is pretty solid... but has she shifted the figure skating landscape in Korea for the long haul? I don't know the answer to that.
    Ah, thanks for the clarification, TontoK. And when you state it that way, I agree that it's too early to tell about how much she has changed Korean skating (as opposed to Korean audiences' interest in the sport of skating). One thing that might improve prospects is if Korea does what many countries do, which is to invite established coaches over both to coach and to train Korean coaches. After all, it's the coaching that will give little kids a chance to learn the right technique from an early age. I think that YuNa's ice shows will also do a lot to give rising Korean skaters a chance to perform for an audience, and to give audiences a chance to become better informed.

    Toni, I hope a guy smart enough to appreciate your many excellences shows up real soon!

  9. #114
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    Quote Originally Posted by Olympia View Post
    Ah, thanks for the clarification, TontoK. And when you state it that way, I agree that it's too early to tell about how much she has changed Korean skating (as opposed to Korean audiences' interest in the sport of skating). One thing that might improve prospects is if Korea does what many countries do, which is to invite established coaches over both to coach and to train Korean coaches. After all, it's the coaching that will give little kids a chance to learn the right technique from an early age. I think that YuNa's ice shows will also do a lot to give rising Korean skaters a chance to perform for an audience, and to give audiences a chance to become better informed.
    If nothing else, Yuna has brought figure skating to the mainstream audience in Korea.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rlmo7_ZV_cQ#t=03m04s

    This is the performance of Girls Generation, the No. 1 girl group in Korea, a few weeks after the 2010 Olympics. At the end they actually pay homage to Yuna's Bond SP by doing her final pose.

    With GG's huge fan base, to have them pay homage to a figure skater is pretty cool.

  10. #115
    can't come down to Earth prettykeys's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TontoK View Post
    A couple of interesting statements in your post...

    Asada is second to Ito, and no one else is of as much significance in Japanese skating in the long haul... I'd have to say I agree, although it pains me to dismiss their first Olympic champion.

    They (meaning Asada and Kim) moved two whole countries. Time will tell, especially in the case of Kim. When Midori Ito retired, Yuka Sato was there to carry the torch, and then it was passed to a generation of great skaters, including Mao. I'm sure it will be passed again.

    However, in the case of Kim, the torch passing doesn't seem so clear-cut.
    My thoughts regarding influence.

    There is no doubt that YuNa has made a huge impact in her native country. Before her, I believe the one figure skater somewhat known and involved in commercials was Korean-American Naomi Nari Nam. We'd probably have to look at 2020 and beyond to see what impact YuNa has made on the landscape, because when she won 2009 Worlds and 2010 Olympics, at the peak of her fame, is when there would be youngsters (5-7 years old?) who may have started learning figure skating to possibly enter the elite level.

    One poster pointed out here some time ago that Javier Fernandez was more impressive in emerging from a non-figure-skating country than YuNa Kim because at least Korea has speed skating. IMO, Korea's prowess in long track and especially short track is a double-edged sword. On the one hand, yes, there exist facilities for amateurs to skate and get interested in figure skating to begin with. On the other hand, the popularity that speed skating has in Korea also means that figure skaters are forced to compete for training time on the same ice with other established and important athletes. Those who aren't considered impressive or as having enough potential are bound to be pushed out to less favourable training hours and general support in lieu of the speed skating stars. Contrast such predicaments with Fernandez who is probably given a nice, big proportion of the Spanish winter sports committees' financial cache and support.

    I don't believe the passing of the torch in female Japanese skating stars is as traceable to individual skaters as figure skating in Korea = YuNa. Surely Midori Ito was one of the biggest and earlier influences, but before her there was Worlds medalist Emi Watanabe (who also medaled at a few Grand Prix events), and the story I've heard is that the Japanese audience in Sapporo was enamored with pixie-faced Janet Lynn, which pushes their interest in skating far back into the 70's.

    Therefore I suggest that it is undeniable that YuNa has had a huge influence in Korea as far as popularizing figure skating goes, most likely greater than her contemporary and rival Mao has in Japan. What actually happens with the influence (will it cause a revolutionary craze in youngsters? or a fizzle?) is a separate question altogether, and one complicated by factors beyond her control. It probably doesn't help that figure skating demands a huge investment (time and money) with relatively little in return. Compare that with the army of female Korean golf stars. :( Fortunately, there have been a few international youngsters who have named YuNa as a major influence and inspiration as well, so it's nice to see that she is making a sporting difference abroad.

  11. #116
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    Prettykeys, your last sentence is part of why I think YuNa is a world treasure, not just a national one. Similar to the way in which Michelle Kwan was YuNa's inspiration (and Janet Lynn inspired skaters in Japan in the 1970s and beyond), YuNa will in turn kindle imaginations in many different countries.

    It's too bad that the sport we love is one of the most expensive of all to train in. It narrows the pool of potential athletes, and I don't see that there's any way around that. I'm just grateful for the ones who show up and are able to wow us.

  12. #117
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    Not to single any uber out-understandable to worship Kim-she is IT in Korea. I like her and her philanthropy. I can say her 2013 performance was a little moving for choice of music. No real connection with audience has been a complaint. As I said, wait a while for great adjectives. Some huge saints wait 400 years. Some great popes wait longer.

    I suspect she will be recalled as a great cop era skater known for speed, huge jumps, great record. As I said great to you isn't great to another. Her flaws are typical of CoP jumpers-no great spiral sequence, posture, stroking, spins just meh. The things that made Lynn or Kwan or Sasha so mesmerizing are no longer valued.

    Criticism or dull board if we only cheerlead. I find her 2013 worlds hervery best skate thus far,I rewatch it more than 2010. Like Chan, I wonder at the monster scores, but she stands up at least. Key thing is to see her speed in person I'm told. When she's blazing thru jumps-it has to be a thrill. Taste varies-don't attack differing opinions-poor form.

    People who have moved me many times, Kwan, Cohen, Petkevich, Wylie, Curry, Boitano, Kurt, G&G, many ice dancers. I think purity of skating was more showcased in 6.0

    Joannie's skate was heroic. Galindo 1996 so moving. I think it's a gap of which system one preferred.

  13. #118
    축복, 축도 RABID's Avatar
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    Reading some comments here about Kim left me exasperated. The supposed narrative of her "not moving people" with her skating, or not being artistic is all rather negative, biased and misses the point of her skating. But it is all rather subjective, isn't it? I find her very artistic and moving; at times to tears even. Perhaps the thread should be less about our personal opinions of who is and isn't great and more about using our insight to predict what will be the CONSENSUS of not who should but who WILL be included into the pantheon of skating gods, when all the dust has settled. The litmus test is pretty straight forward; what names will loom large and easily come to mind IN MORE THAN ONE COUNTRY decades after they hang 'em up? I predict Kim will be part of that discussion for years to come and for reasons of competitive prowess, for raising the bar of "faster higher", her COP tactics and strategies and last but not least, her glamor/charisma.

  14. #119
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    I actually like the current COP system compared to the old judging system. It makes figure skating more like a sport. I love that figure skating is a fusion of both art and sport, but I believe that as an olympic "sport" it should be based more on athleticism. I mean if people really wanted to see more art and flexibility, go watch a ballet performance. I'm glad that the system changed because at least now more people will take FS seriously OTHER than FS fans.

    As for the greats, I think Yuna will end up being one because of three different reasons. 1) She's the only Korean skater that has managed to win all 4 major ISU events: GPF, 4CC, Worlds, Olympics (or ANY major international comp. for that matter). 2)She was the first skater to hit 200-level point mark and to never ever place off podium in her entire career, including Juniors. 3) I've never seen any female skater that uses so much speed. She is fast and her ice coverage is huge and she is incredibly consistent. I agree that she doesn't move a lot of people. She doesn't really move me either... but that's probably due to her reserved personality. However, everyone must agree that she is a force to be reckoned with. Anyone that denies that is a blatant hater.

    I think that Mao will end up being one of the greats as well because of her triple axels and her overall quality as a skater. Her "rivarly" between her and Yuna really stirred up some excitement in the skating world. She's a beautiful skater and I enjoy watching her performances. HOWEVER, I think that as a great, not only you should have good skating qualities, but a good CAREER. She has yet to win an olympic gold medal and her career is not incredibly impressive. Unlike Yuna, she placed off podium many times and she only won 2 world championships. If she doesn't win the OGM in Sochi, I don't think a lot of people will remember as a great ON her own (other than her fans of course). She will be remebered for the rivarly, not for her career. I really hope she does well at the next olympics though.

    Lastly, for those of you that are saying that Carolina will be one of the greats if she wins a medal at Sochi... well possibly if she wins the olympics. If not, I doubt it.

  15. #120
    Custom Title hurrah's Avatar
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    In frequent discussions about who the legendary skaters are, I have not seen the scores that they got during their lifetime raised as a reason for why they are legendary. The scoring system has changed throughout figure skating history and no doubt will continue to do so, so in the long run, the significance of the scores wears away.

    I think posterity might remember Yuna as the first Korean figure skater who won OGM, and that she always medaled in competitions that she entered. She will be remembered for her 3-3s which she was highly successful with.

    If Mao were to quit skating now, she would be remembered for being the first lady skater to win the Glam Slam title in the Grand Prix series. She will also be remembered for being the most successful triple-axel jumper amongst the five lady figure skaters that have ever jumped the 3-axel thus far, being the youngest skater to have a 3-axel ratified, the first skater to do 3-axel in short, the first skater to do two 3-axel in the long, etc.

    Both are huge stars in their respective countries. I really doubt that Yuna and Mao are that famous outside of their country besides the skating community.

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