"As for Plushenko , I believe that this man should be put somehow separately and discuss it separately. Perhaps he's got any in history , he took part in three Olympics. That's 12 years of visual work , plus now he's trying to be on the level. This country is not Russia - Plyuschendiya (laughs). I joke , of course, I say, but it really is presents itself. This man -is a history, a separate unit ."
Kovtun is really overhyped, at least what I saw at euros was not impressive, besides the jumps I mean, that happened not to be impresssive too. What was good was his music that carried you away and I dont know what Tarasova was thinking because he is not that matured or aged for this piece. I think they did not let him develop at his own pace.He was lost even before he started.
There is a case Plushenko might crumble under pressure too but going by the odds here he maybe not, and it is huge boost, look at Tatiana and Maxim and how they are messed up. I dont know how you can love figure skating and wish Plush falls all over the place. I certainly didnt wish Kovtun to fall and gave a cheering SO to both Voronov and Menshov. Especially Menshov and his awesome Lp!
Nobody of the three guarantees a team Gold for Russia anyway, and maybe not even Plush. If he manages to have a Euros 2012 skate with one quad (I hope he does just that really) it will be enough for the team, super Javier had almost the same marks on Saturday. If they send him I think it will be a great Olympic moment. In Euros I met so many people travelling to see Plush and Joubs last Euro skate I was almost shocked. And the love Jouby got from the crowd was amazing, I found it a great highlight of Euros!
Last edited by seniorita; 01-21-2014 at 04:55 PM.
I am very interested to see how he skates in Sochi actually. The pressure has never been off of him like it is now; in the previous three Olympics he was either the co-favorite or only favorite for gold. No one is expecting a medal from him so hopefully he can take advantage of that and skate his best.
I disagree - I think there is more pressure on him now than ever. He hasn't been competing hardly at all for 4 years, he's had surgeries, his body is put together with bubble gum and toothpicks and it's apparent (at least to me) that Russia is looking for him to do big things because he's the great Plushenko. It would be hard enough if he were in great physical shape, a few years younger, and had been competing regularly. But I do think the expectations for him to perform by his country and many people who remember him at his peak is pretty tough!!! I think it would have been better to use his name and his voice to advertise the games, etc. And athletes always think they have that one great skate or one great game left in them. I just hope he doesn't get injured.
I’m no Plushenko fan but I would never wish another skater to fall…wouldn’t want that bad karma to come back to a skater that I like.
I'm rooting for the old guy to hold it together and do his job.
I honestly think this is an awful decision. Plushenko hasn't been competing at all recently and I don't think there should even be a debate about who gets the spot. He hasn't earned it. He hasn't earned it because he hasn't competed in any major events since Vancouver. He hasn't earned it at Nationals. A private performance in front of Russian officials? Really? At this point all that his earning him the spot is his name. But past achievements shouldn't be a factor in who gets to compete NOW.
Kovtun's career is only starting and who knows what could happen for him in the Olympics. Actually, all the Russian guys who competed at europeans deserve this spot much more than he does. For them, the olympics could be a major stepping stone in their careers, Kovtun especially. But they don't even get a shot because an old decides he still hasn't had enough. There was a reason why retired athletes used to not be able to come just for the olympics and frankly I think this was a good rule.
I think this is deeply unfair and I'm very saddened by this poor decision.
Both Voronov and Kovtun (and arguably Menshov) should have all been included in this closed door performance. Right now, it's as though the Russian Federation is making some arbitrary decision and we're supposed to believe that Plushenko had a skate worthy of Sochi. By the sounds of it, Voronov/Menshov at Euros quite possibly still had a better FS with their 2 quad + 2 triple axel performances (as there was apparently a hand down on Plushenko's first quad, and there's no telling how well executed the rest of Plushenko's elements were... one could say his Russian Nationals' skate was performed "clean with all the elements" with the triple axel at the end and quad at the beginning even though he doubled so many jumps).
Anyways. Hopefully he does a good job for Russia, but if he doesn't then the Russian fed yet again have made their bed and have to lie in it.
I hope somebody also asks the federation officials why they chose to do it behind closed doors instead of have the skate available for people to see (although we all know the answer to that ).
At the end of the day, it's not Plushenko's fault that none of the others stamped their authority on that spot. It's not Plushenko's fault that none of the others have taken up his crown an become consistent, excellent senior skaters. It's not Plushenko's fault that in mind and record he remains the strongest candidate.
Kovtun has now been in four high-pressure ISU championship situations. He blew three of them. That doesn't speak well for him. All Kovtun had to do at Worlds last year was skate half-decently and he would have got the second spot and he would be going. All he had to do was hold it together at the GPF - even a midfield finish would have been better than what he did. All he had to do was medal at Euros and beat the other two Russians - and he would likely be going. But he couldn't do any of those things. If he cannot handle this pressure, then he cannot handle the Olympic pressure.
That Plushenko can not only handle Olympic pressure but defeat it is a known fact, a known quantity, and his iron will has never faltered, nor will it do so now.
And "All Kovtun had to do"? He was a junior dropped into his first Worlds. His personal best prior to Worlds was 226.57 points, which would have placed him 11th at 2013 Worlds. And "all he had to do" was beat Voronov's score of 252 points? That in itself is 12 points higher than Kovtun's personal best. He would have needed essentially perfect skates to defeat Voronov.
Also, let's be honest here... even if Kovtun had beat the other two Russians or even won Euros -- heck, even if Voronov won Euros -- the Russian Federation in this closed doors skate would have STILL given Plushenko the go ahead. Kovtun just made that decision easier by having a poor Euros performance, and Voronov and Menshov had no chance even if they landed 5 quads.
To give Plushenko the spot because none of the others "stamped their authority on it", when Voronov clearly had with his Euros performances as well as his Russian Nationals performances where he was far more consistent than Plushenko, is frankly pretty lame and unfair. If Plushenko wanted to stamp his authority on that spot and prove that he was the top Russian man going in, he shouldn't have shied away from Euros (although I'm guessing Voronov would have beaten him, which would have been even more awkward for the Russian fed). He should have gone to Euros and said "After Russian Nationals, let me put confidence in you having me as your Russian man in Sochi"... right now, all we have is his Russian nationals SP (clean, but devoid of choreo) and his FS - where he was outscored on TES by Lipnitskaia & Sotnikova -- and a supposedly "great" test skate.
At least Wagner had strong results on the GP and GPF, and over last season as well, and was the best US woman internationally this and last year, so she was justified in going instead of Mirai. Plushenko is going purely by name alone (unless he legitimately did have a good test skate which we will never know) and PCS scoring potential (which of course will be through the roof no matter how poorly he skates, just like Russian Nationals). Obviously the crowds want to see Plushenko and not Voronov -- but let's not pretend that Plushenko actually earned his spot in Sochi by virtue of being the best Russian man this season.
I'm not surprised he's been chosen.
Given the inconsistency of the Russian men over the past quad and the lack of a real star, I've always assumed that if Plushenko wanted to go to the Olympics, some justification would be found to send him.
If it was such a tall order for Kovtun to get Russia two spots at 2013 Worlds, maybe his team shouldn't have insisted on sending him over skaters who beat him at Nationals
When a young skater does well, fans complain that the skater is too young/immature/junior-ish and hasn't earned their stripes. When an older skater chooses not to hang up their skates, fans complain that they're selfish and not giving the younger skaters a chance. Whatever happened to "age is but a number"?
Kovtun is an awful choice for the Olympics. He's cracked under pressure at his first Worlds, at his first GPF, and at his first Euros. He had the lead at Rostelecom after the SP but still finished second. What indication is there that he won't crack at his first Olympics? Home Olympics are even worse when it comes to pressure. We all know he's not going to medal at the individual event and on top of that he's likely to screw up Russia's chance in the Team event. Why should giving him "experience for the future" take precedent over the hard work of all the other Russian skaters, who want to do well? Plushenko might be old and washed up but he's still a safer bet.
So Plushenko's lifetime "body of work" (see reputation) trumps Kovtun's achievements this season (2 GP medals, only Russian man in the GPF and National title)? Where's the petition to send Kovtun to the Olympics?
Where's The High Horse Brigade Of Crushed Olympic Dreams when you need it?