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Thread: Should it have been a choice between Nagasu & Edmunds for final spot on U.S Olympic team?

  1. #31
    Rejoicing in the land of Kwan kwanatic's Avatar
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    I'm still really torn on the decision but I do agree that there was only one spot open for the team this year. It was already predetermined that Ashley was going to go; and as long as Gracie didn't fall five times, she was going. The decision really was between sending Mirai or sending Polina. Both have their merits and both sides have valid arguments for why one deserved to go over the other. Sentimentally, I'd have chose Mirai; strategically, I'd have chosen Polina.

    They went the strategic route and picked Polina. I think what it came down to is the officials know that Polina's chances of placing well in Sochi as an unknown are slim to none but it does give her the exposure. Sending her to worlds does the same thing. Seeing as Polina will probably be one of the top 3 US ladies competing against this growing contingent of Russians post-Sochi, she needs the experience. She's already behind skaters her age like Julia and Elena, who have had exposure on the senior GP and have made their mark. Polina needs to catch up and I think the USFSA knows that which is why they decided to throw her in the deep end without any water wings...so to speak. She'll sink or she'll swim, but either way she'll have the experience and exposure which will be critical for her moving forward.

    Sending Mirai would have been nice of them b/c it'd have been a reward to her for delivering under the pressure of the event. However, the USFSA has never been one to do Mirai any favors so I wasn't shocked with the decision to send Polina over her. The way they see it, they gave Mirai her chance...and I (grudgingly) have to agree. I feel like if Mirai had been showing this kind of determination, enthusiasm, spark and fight a few years ago, she'd have been much better positioned to convincingly nab a spot on the team. It really was too little too late, but I still think she should have been rewarded. Send Gracie, Ashley and Polina to Sochi; send Polina to junior worlds and send Gracie, Ashley and Mirai to senior worlds. That would have been acceptable but the USFSA didn't spread the wealth at all for Mirai. They just tossed her a spot to 4CC and told her to sit down and shut up. I do think they were wrong for that...

  2. #32
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    You know whose fault this really is?
    Ashley. All this girl had to do was fall only once in the long program, and she probably would have come in ahead of Mirai, or the judges could have gotten here there with GOE or PCS scores somehow.

    I want her to do well in the Olympics and Worlds, but I don't trust her not to freeze. I predict two spots again for 2015, because I can see Gracie coming in 4th or 5th (I don't think we'll see another medalist for ladies in a loooong time) and Ashley coming in below 8th or 9th. Not that Mirai necessarily would do much better, but I would trust her more to remain upright.

    If she skates like she did at Nationals in front of international judges who aren't in love with her already, she will be lucky to be in the next to last flight.

  3. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanatic View Post
    I'm still really torn on the decision but I do agree that there was only one spot open for the team this year. It was already predetermined that Ashley was going to go; and as long as Gracie didn't fall five times, she was going. The decision really was between sending Mirai or sending Polina. Both have their merits and both sides have valid arguments for why one deserved to go over the other. Sentimentally, I'd have chose Mirai; strategically, I'd have chosen Polina.

    They went the strategic route and picked Polina. I think what it came down to is the officials know that Polina's chances of placing well in Sochi as an unknown are slim to none but it does give her the exposure. Sending her to worlds does the same thing. Seeing as Polina will probably be one of the top 3 US ladies competing against this growing contingent of Russians post-Sochi, she needs the experience. She's already behind skaters her age like Julia and Elena, who have had exposure on the senior GP and have made their mark. Polina needs to catch up and I think the USFSA knows that which is why they decided to throw her in the deep end without any water wings...so to speak. She'll sink or she'll swim, but either way she'll have the experience and exposure which will be critical for her moving forward.

    Sending Mirai would have been nice of them b/c it'd have been a reward to her for delivering under the pressure of the event. However, the USFSA has never been one to do Mirai any favors so I wasn't shocked with the decision to send Polina over her. The way they see it, they gave Mirai her chance...and I (grudgingly) have to agree. I feel like if Mirai had been showing this kind of determination, enthusiasm, spark and fight a few years ago, she'd have been much better positioned to convincingly nab a spot on the team. It really was too little too late, but I still think she should have been rewarded. Send Gracie, Ashley and Polina to Sochi; send Polina to junior worlds and send Gracie, Ashley and Mirai to senior worlds. That would have been acceptable but the USFSA didn't spread the wealth at all for Mirai. They just tossed her a spot to 4CC and told her to sit down and shut up. I do think they were wrong for that...
    An even handed summary, insightful and very plausible analysis.

  4. #34
    Rejoicing in the land of Kwan kwanatic's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RABID View Post
    An even handed summary, insightful and very plausible analysis.
    Well, you know, I try.

  5. #35
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    Mirai is 9th after the 4CC SP with 2 <'s and a time violation. I think this reiterates how important the "body of work" consideration is, and that the choice was absolutely between Polina and Mirai, whereas Ashley was safe.

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    Yes, I think with some time and reflection those who were crying for Ashley to be left of the Olympic team will realize they were being complete morons and will laugh at themselves, or maybe knock themselves at the side of their head with their hand hard, for even thinking such a stupid thing, and that the decision was absolutely always Mirai vs Polina.

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    From the moment the podium was determined. I knew Ashley and Gracie were on the team. As long as Ashley made the top five, I assumed she would be on the Olympic team. She has medaled at all but one GP event in the past two seasons. She has placed top five at Worlds for two seasons. SHe earned her spot by being consistent over two seasons. Yes she fell at nationals. But I don't think one bad event after so many is enough to keep her off the team. It will likely effect what she skates for the team event though.

    The question to me was do you send Mirai who is inconsistent and at the end of her ropes trying to make her career happen or Polina who is technically great, still artistically young, and no international senior experience. As a Mirai fan, I personally was hoping that it would be Mirai, especially seeing as Polina has not even competed in Junior Worlds. However, giving Polina olympics/worlds placements sets her up well for world rankings and the grand prix next season. However Mirai is currently without a coach making it even harder for the usfsa to know which version of Mirai they can expect at the Olympics. Polina, like Mirai was at the last Olympics, is part of the future. I think they are hoping people will fall for Polina as they did for Mirai four years ago even if Polina doesn't place.

  8. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Poodlepal View Post
    You know whose fault this really is?

    Ashley. All this girl had to do was fall only once in the long program,...
    I know, right? But then again, I don't think skaters fall on purpose just to make us mad.

  9. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kelisiting View Post
    From the moment the podium was determined. I knew Ashley and Gracie were on the team. As long as Ashley made the top five, I assumed she would be on the Olympic team. She has medaled at all but one GP event in the past two seasons. She has placed top five at Worlds for two seasons. SHe earned her spot by being consistent over two seasons. Yes she fell at nationals. But I don't think one bad event after so many is enough to keep her off the team. It will likely effect what she skates for the team event though.

    The question to me was do you send Mirai who is inconsistent and at the end of her ropes trying to make her career happen or Polina who is technically great, still artistically young, and no international senior experience. As a Mirai fan, I personally was hoping that it would be Mirai, especially seeing as Polina has not even competed in Junior Worlds. However, giving Polina olympics/worlds placements sets her up well for world rankings and the grand prix next season. However Mirai is currently without a coach making it even harder for the usfsa to know which version of Mirai they can expect at the Olympics. Polina, like Mirai was at the last Olympics, is part of the future. I think they are hoping people will fall for Polina as they did for Mirai four years ago even if Polina doesn't place.
    Despite many fatalistic comments it doesn't have to be the end of the line for Mirai. If I was a coach, close friend or close relative I would tell her to take some time at the end of the season and weigh some very important facts; in four years she is STILL a young woman, she has the tools, her commitment and maturity was THE determining factor in her demise and last but not least if she can find it in herself to commit to the hard work, bumps and bruises of a four year plan she might yet save her skating career even if she never sees the Olympics again. Everyone loves and celebrates stories of redemption. I hope she has it in her.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by RABID View Post
    Despite many fatalistic comments it doesn't have to be the end of the line for Mirai. If I was a coach, close friend or close relative I would tell her to take some time at the end of the season and weigh some very important facts; in four years she is STILL a young woman, she has the tools, her commitment and maturity was THE determining factor in her demise and last but not least if she can find it in herself to commit to the hard work, bumps and bruises of a four year plan she might yet save her skating career even if she never sees the Olympics again. Everyone loves and celebrates stories of redemption. I hope she has it in her.
    OTOH, she also needs to consider what she is sacrificing. There aren't many professional opportunities out there except for the very best skaters. She is missing out on going to college and exploring a career outside of skating. What is her best case scenario at this point in her career? Another national title? Maybe, but it would be hard with some talented youngsters. A world/olympic medal? Not possible. I think at some point the stress of underperforming, public scrutiny, training expenses, and the potential for injury makes it not worth it for a skater in this position. Ultimately the choice is hers but I don't think it is a question of how hard she is willing to work, but rather what is she even working towards.

  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivingmissdaisy View Post
    OTOH, she also needs to consider what she is sacrificing. There aren't many professional opportunities out there except for the very best skaters. She is missing out on going to college and exploring a career outside of skating. What is her best case scenario at this point in her career? Another national title? Maybe, but it would be hard with some talented youngsters. A world/olympic medal? Not possible. I think at some point the stress of underperforming, public scrutiny, training expenses, and the potential for injury makes it not worth it for a skater in this position. Ultimately the choice is hers but I don't think it is a question of how hard she is willing to work, but rather what is she even working towards.
    All very true, everything you said, but here is the thing, nothing BAD will come out of her choosing to recommit her self. The rule of thumb nowadays is one must start considering their life trajectory no later than their late 20's and must start walking that chosen trajectory by the time they are in their early 30's. She has time. Committing oneself towards a long term goal? Never a bad thing. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.

  12. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kelisiting View Post
    From the moment the podium was determined. I knew Ashley and Gracie were on the team. As long as Ashley made the top five, I assumed she would be on the Olympic team. She has medaled at all but one GP event in the past two seasons. She has placed top five at Worlds for two seasons. SHe earned her spot by being consistent over two seasons. Yes she fell at nationals. But I don't think one bad event after so many is enough to keep her off the team. It will likely effect what she skates for the team event though.

    The question to me was do you send Mirai who is inconsistent and at the end of her ropes trying to make her career happen or Polina who is technically great, still artistically young, and no international senior experience. As a Mirai fan, I personally was hoping that it would be Mirai, especially seeing as Polina has not even competed in Junior Worlds. However, giving Polina olympics/worlds placements sets her up well for world rankings and the grand prix next season. However Mirai is currently without a coach making it even harder for the usfsa to know which version of Mirai they can expect at the Olympics. Polina, like Mirai was at the last Olympics, is part of the future. I think they are hoping people will fall for Polina as they did for Mirai four years ago even if Polina doesn't place.
    According to her ISU bio, Mirai's coach is Mr. Takashi Mura - http://www.isuresults.com/bios/isufs00010220.htm

    He stood by the sideboards with Mirai and sat with her in the K&C at 4CCs.

  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kelisiting View Post
    From the moment the podium was determined. I knew Ashley and Gracie were on the team. As long as Ashley made the top five, I assumed she would be on the Olympic team. She has medaled at all but one GP event in the past two seasons. She has placed top five at Worlds for two seasons. SHe earned her spot by being consistent over two seasons. Yes she fell at nationals. But I don't think one bad event after so many is enough to keep her off the team. It will likely effect what she skates for the team event though.

    The question to me was do you send Mirai who is inconsistent and at the end of her ropes trying to make her career happen or Polina who is technically great, still artistically young, and no international senior experience. As a Mirai fan, I personally was hoping that it would be Mirai, especially seeing as Polina has not even competed in Junior Worlds. However, giving Polina olympics/worlds placements sets her up well for world rankings and the grand prix next season. However Mirai is currently without a coach making it even harder for the usfsa to know which version of Mirai they can expect at the Olympics. Polina, like Mirai was at the last Olympics, is part of the future. I think they are hoping people will fall for Polina as they did for Mirai four years ago even if Polina doesn't place.

    Why do people keep saying Mirai is without a coach? She was working very hard for months in Japan with her Japanese coach. Because he is not a USFS/PSA member, he could not coach her at Nationals. However, Mirai had her ballet coach, Galina Barinova, with her at Nationals. This is also the coach who accompanied her to 2011 4CC, when she had just about her best competition ever, save for the Olympics. Galina was able to accompany her to those competitions because she IS accredited by both USFS and PSA as a "real" skating coach. Nobody harped on Angela Nikodinov for not having a coach when she chose to switch to her ballet coach, Elena Tcherkaskaya, in 2001. In fact, that coach was responsible for transforming her. Angela found her confidence in her ballet coach; the same may be true for Mirai.

  14. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by RABID View Post
    Committing oneself towards a long term goal? Never a bad thing. Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
    Well, there's not only the opportunity cost (of not doing something else) but also a financial cost to continuing. Skating is expensive so it's not necessarily a good idea if you dig yourself into a financial hole merely for a "goal" if there are better opportunities outside of skating for her.

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by drivingmissdaisy View Post
    Well, there's not only the opportunity cost (of not doing something else) but also a financial cost to continuing. Skating is expensive so it's not necessarily a good idea if you dig yourself into a financial hole merely for a "goal" if there are better opportunities outside of skating for her.
    As I said, you have valid points which I am sure will weigh heavily on any decision. I will understand and sympathize if Mirai decides to "hang them up" but my respect for her will grow immeasurably if she decides to persevere.

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