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Thread: Poised to break through--but didn't

  1. #91
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    I think Gracie will have good results in the future. Aside from Yuna and Michelle, there haven't been any skaters in the last 20 years who have maintained a level of excellence over a long period. It is very typical for top skaters to have dips in their form and it is understandable with all the changes Gracie has gone through that she needs to get settled again before she can perform her best.

  2. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivingmissdaisy View Post
    I think Gracie will have good results in the future. Aside from Yuna and Michelle, there haven't been any skaters in the last 20 years who have maintained a level of excellence over a long period. It is very typical for top skaters to have dips in their form and it is understandable with all the changes Gracie has gone through that she needs to get settled again before she can perform her best.
    Exactly! And also, Yu-Na, early in her career would fold under pressure if she lead in after the short, and Michelle had that rough year in 1996-97, when she lost all her main titles to Tara Lipinski. Look at Irina Slutskaya, she was the world silver medallist in 1998, and then didn't make the world team and was written off in 1998-99, but came back in 1999-00 better than ever. It's not fair to say someone will never rise up just because they aren't delivering all the time, it's being human. Gracie hasn't been around that long.

  3. #93
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    Yeah, but compare Gracie to these Russian young ladies. They come right out of juniors and get golds and silvers on the Grand Prix circuit and then make the GPF. You really think she'll be able to beat them in the future?

    No, I'm seeing her as someone like Ashley Wagner or Alissa Czisny, who maybe comes in 4th or 5th in their 20s. Hope I'm wrong, but I'm not impressed by her consistency, and don't see anything that unique about her artistry.

  4. #94
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    Let's bring this back to what the topic is and not "Being negative about a skater who hasn't been around long enough to estabilsh herself"

    Dube and Davison won bronze in 2008, but after that struggled to maintain that level consistently after that.

    Sargeant and Wirtz were medal contenders in 1999, but nerves and pressure got the best of them and they finished sixth.

  5. #95
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    I thought Angela Nikodinov was breaking through, then her mother died in that car accident. Also Jenny Kirk was wonderful. Losing her mom to cancer and her eating disorder were very tough. It seems most fail, a few become stars that last a few years. It seems those who stay in forever have the money to do so these days. If you don't hit and make some meoney, it is crazy to keep trying. Education is very important to most of these kids today. As it should be. Too bad for us in US, we lose many if they do not break through quickly.

  6. #96
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    Angela was never able to hold it together, she'd make a mistake and fall apart :(. Poor Jenny, she did have promise but she lost her motivation. So many US women in that time simply were trapped in a very deep field.

    There was also Hanae Yokoya, a Japanese skater during the 90s, before Japan became the force in single skating it is today. She was tenth in the world twice, then fell to twenty third (I think she was injured) then disappeared.

  7. #97
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    Beatrisa Liang was poised to become a contender, but she lost her consistency. I also felt she was never judged well, considering her programs were always packed and musical.

  8. #98
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poodlepal View Post
    Yeah, but compare Gracie to these Russian young ladies. They come right out of juniors and get golds and silvers on the Grand Prix circuit and then make the GPF. You really think she'll be able to beat them in the future?

    No, I'm seeing her as someone like Ashley Wagner or Alissa Czisny, who maybe comes in 4th or 5th in their 20s. Hope I'm wrong, but I'm not impressed by her consistency, and don't see anything that unique about her artistry.
    Most of these Russian girls still have the bodies of little girls and haven't gone through puberty yet or aren't done. Elena probably weighs 75 lbs at most. Let's see where these girls are in another 2-3 years when they grow about 4 inches and they can't rotate those tiny jumps anymore. The sport is littered with prepubescent girls who were done 2 years later.

  9. #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    Most of these Russian girls still have the bodies of little girls and haven't gone through puberty yet or aren't done. Elena probably weighs 75 lbs at most. Let's see where these girls are in another 2-3 years when they grow about 4 inches and they can't rotate those tiny jumps anymore. The sport is littered with prepubescent girls who were done 2 years later.
    My thoughts, too. Elena and Julia may not be as consistent when they grew. It sounds like people who are dissing Gracie want a big star and want it NOW. That's a lot of pressure. This is about skaters who never broke through, not about impatience with new skaters.

    Bebe Liang is yet another skater caught up in a deep field of American ladies.

    Sarah Meier showed great potential for Switzerland and was a good jumper, but strulgged with consistency and injuries over the course of career.

  10. #100
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    I think a lot of the young American skaters are undone by the hype. I don't think any skater is helped by the media declaring the next great thing before they've won anything, and in some cases, before they've even entered a senior competition. I don't think Sasha was helped in the slightest by having Dick Button say "Sasha has it all" on national TV when anyone who knows the slightest bit about skating could see that her basic skating was weak and that she was skating on the flat of her blades much of the time. I don't think Gracie Gold is helped by articles with the heading "The Gold Standard" either.

    Naomi Nari Nam's mother was quite blunt in her criticism of the US media after the Sports Illustrated cover story with the tag line "She's got next!". Reporters followed her at every event the following season and it completely unnerved her. Her mother said she wished that article had never appeared. Naomi was dealing with puberty and injuries the following year and the hype and expectations destroyed her confidence.

    Sasha was hounded at Jr. Worlds by reporters trailing her everywhere, expecting her to pick up a medal and move on the Sr. Worlds. She blew up and finished well off the podium. I friend who was there said she felt sorry for the kid.

    Canada has done a similar thing with their young men. Expectations for young Canadian Men are just as high as they are for young American Women. Rod Black called several young men "The Next One", and none of them were. Jason Denomme was "The Next One", as was Emanuel Sandhu and Fedor Andreev, among others. It happened so many times that we started calling it "The Curse of 'The Next One'" because after being named The Next One, these skaters' careers fizzled. I remember he almost referred to Jeff Buttle as The Next One, and just before the words came out of his mouth, he paused, and said something else, like Canada's best hope at Worlds.

    Let the kids grow up and accomplish something, and then celebrate it. I'd rather talk about what they've accomplished, rather than what they might do.

  11. #101
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    While it's certainly not true to say these skaters never brokethrough, I think the difference between accomplishments and talent is notable for Tomas Verner and Nobunari Oda.

  12. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonlady View Post
    I think a lot of the young American skaters are undone by the hype. I don't think any skater is helped by the media declaring the next great thing before they've won anything, and in some cases, before they've even entered a senior competition. I don't think Sasha was helped in the slightest by having Dick Button say "Sasha has it all" on national TV when anyone who knows the slightest bit about skating could see that her basic skating was weak and that she was skating on the flat of her blades much of the time. I don't think Gracie Gold is helped by articles with the heading "The Gold Standard" either.

    Naomi Nari Nam's mother was quite blunt in her criticism of the US media after the Sports Illustrated cover story with the tag line "She's got next!". Reporters followed her at every event the following season and it completely unnerved her. Her mother said she wished that article had never appeared. Naomi was dealing with puberty and injuries the following year and the hype and expectations destroyed her confidence.

    Sasha was hounded at Jr. Worlds by reporters trailing her everywhere, expecting her to pick up a medal and move on the Sr. Worlds. She blew up and finished well off the podium. I friend who was there said she felt sorry for the kid.

    Canada has done a similar thing with their young men. Expectations for young Canadian Men are just as high as they are for young American Women. Rod Black called several young men "The Next One", and none of them were. Jason Denomme was "The Next One", as was Emanuel Sandhu and Fedor Andreev, among others. It happened so many times that we started calling it "The Curse of 'The Next One'" because after being named The Next One, these skaters' careers fizzled. I remember he almost referred to Jeff Buttle as The Next One, and just before the words came out of his mouth, he paused, and said something else, like Canada's best hope at Worlds.

    Let the kids grow up and accomplish something, and then celebrate it. I'd rather talk about what they've accomplished, rather than what they might do.
    This could possibly be another thread about hyping kids too soon, but very true about American women. Sasha was beautiful and flexible and it disguised her flaws, hype them up after they've earned it. Sasha was in the lead and it was like "It's her time!" Nope. Sasha did well, though. Carole, Mirai, Rachel were all hyped up. Ashley didn't get as much hyupe and she has done better.
    Similarly, in Canada, Cynthia Phaneuf originally got more hype than Joannie Rochette because she burst on to the scene and won medals faster. However, Joannie was more successful, winning six nationals, a world silver medal and Olympic bronze. She didn't get the hype until after she established.

    SO TRUE about "The Next One" in Canadian Men's skating. How many were expected to be the next one? I lost count. Yet, it was Jeff Buttle who was the real Next One, followed by Patrick Chan. Chan got a fair amount of hype early, but I think it was obvious he was naturally gifted and also competitive. Plus, it didn't take him long to take over, winning silver in his second appearance at Worlds in 2009. But so many "Next Ones" didn't happen, most notably Sandhu.

    We shall see about the Russians, it's all easy now, but when puberty comes it may not be as easy. Gracie has time, but the hype she gets makes people impatient for her to deliver, and that's not fair.

  13. #103
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    I don't think Rachael was hyped up much. If anything she overachieved and i don't think anyone ever saw her winning a World championship or the Olympics unlike someone like Mirai.

  14. #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dragonlady View Post
    Canada has done a similar thing with their young men. Expectations for young Canadian Men are just as high as they are for young American Women. Rod Black called several young men "The Next One", and none of them were. Jason Denomme was "The Next One", as was Emanuel Sandhu and Fedor Andreev, among others. It happened so many times that we started calling it "The Curse of 'The Next One'" because after being named The Next One, these skaters' careers fizzled. I remember he almost referred to Jeff Buttle as The Next One, and just before the words came out of his mouth, he paused, and said something else, like Canada's best hope at Worlds.
    I completely forgot about him... I would definitely put the handsome Fedor Andreev as someone who didn't break through (sorry Marina)

  15. #105
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Speaking of Andreev reminds me of Jana Khokhlova. Did she return to Russia after the team retired, or did she remain in Detroit to coach? Where did she wind up?

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