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Thread: Michelle:Dividing line

  1. #1
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    Michelle:Dividing line

    Ok, hear me out...
    On the subject of respecting Michelle, there seems to be a stark dividing line. Those who have see her grow up and those who see her as a superstar.

    If you read the name Michelle Kwan, and you think, Overrated, has been around forever, does not change, same old, same old chances are you are new to skating. When I read Michelle Kwan, I think is this the same little girl who finished 2nd to Tonya Harding at '94 nats. Is this the same little girl who was sucked into the Nancy/Tonya fiasco as a possible alternate at the olympics for either, is this the same little girl who transformed her self into the role salome. If you read the name Michelle Kwan and have a reaction like that of the former mostly came interested in skater more recently. If you have a reaction of the former may be you got into skating about 10 years ago like me.

    Like many of you, I was a casual skating fan un till Tonya/Nancy hit and my interest in skating became larger and larger. For many of us that whole time period was our first introduction to Michelle Kwan. So my whole preception of her is totally different from others who consider her overrated: because I saw her whole development as a skater and person from girl to woman even though the dissappointment of both olympics.
    Last edited by Kwanisqueen81; 03-19-2004 at 03:46 PM.

  2. #2
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    I dunno... I have a lot of her older performances on tape because friends send me stuff trying to get me to become a Kwan fan... and all it does is prove my point for myself... she didn't have spark then and I don't find a lot of spark in her now...

    I don't get the connection so many of her fans get with her... and that's just me... it's just one of those "art" things LOL

  3. #3
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    I don't know. Back then there were fans who felt that Kwan was a little brat who had no business being there. Now they feel that Kwan is a dried up old hag who has no business being there.

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    I was getting myself reacquainted with Ms. Kwan's skating through the Cruella DeKwan site. I don't think she should have beaten LuLu's program with that Salome schlock but she made a lot of improvement in her skating from when she was younger. I remember in her first trip to worlds, Kurt Browning made the comment that he thought she was kind of sexy (MK was 12) and I thought that was pretty cool of him even though I think he got some flack for saying that.

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    Michelle: Dividing line

    I've been a skating fan for 40 years. When I hear the name Michelle Kwan I think of the phenominal skater who has dominated ladies figureskating for 10 years. Whether you like her or not, and I adore her, how can you ignore the contribution she has made to the sport.

    I remember when she first came on the scene and can't believe anyone would consider her a brat. At the age of 23 years, she is decades from being an old hag.

    If Michelle doesn't win another competition from this point on (which is highly unlikely), I will forever consider her to be the greatest ladies competitor of all time.

    People may criticize her style of skating, or anything else about her but they can never take away her accomplishments.

    Besides she just may lock in yet another world championship next week.

    Dizzy

  6. #6
    Custom Title Ogre Mage's Avatar
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    I have been watching skating since '86-'87 so I was a fan way before Michelle came on the scene. Viewing Michelle through the lens of history, very few skaters have been able to maintain such a high quality of skating for such a long period of time. Katarina Witt, who also had a long amateur career like Michelle was criticized during the latter years of her reign for her "stand and pose" routines. Similarly, MK has been criticized for a lack of variation in her programs. I think that kind of comes with the territory when you have been at the top that long.

    Michelle's accomplishments in the sport are extraordinary. 8 National titles (2nd only to Maribel Vincent Owens on the all time list) and 5 world titles (a three-way tie for most by an American skater). Most of the skaters who accumulated a number of titles similar to Kwan did so when figures were a lot more important. The fact that she has been able to do so in the high risk triple jump era is a testament to her great competitive abilities. She has always been a class act and gracious even when a competition did not go well for her. I consider her to be one of the finest champions the USA has produced.
    Last edited by Ogre Mage; 03-19-2004 at 06:29 PM.

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    I have to laugh at some of the people who sneer contemptuously at her 6 triple programs as being undeserving, boring, blah, devoid of choreo - whatever. To call Salome schlock is just nonsense. I am a figure skating fan of 20 years standing. I've done a lot of research into the sport and I can bet that NO 15 year old ever presented a program with so many levels of emotional expression and artistic brilliance ( that is accessible on video anyway)

    Salome is not my fave MK routine, but you have to remember her age and take into account her developement from '95 to '96. That is what makes it special.

    There are arguments for Lulu and Kwan in '96, but Kwan had the extra triple and she span better. Lulu barely had any spins, and they weren't her strongest suit either.

    Whether you like her skating or not - TRUE skating fans must acknowledge the contribution she has made to this sport, and recognise her for the great skater she is.

    I was always brought up to applaud something I couldn't do. And so I continually applaud any skater - not just MK. But people who just are out to bash her would do well to think how they would do if they were laced into a pair of skates and had to perform 6 or 7 triple jumps infront of International judges, 10 - 15,000 live spectators, and God knows how many millions watching around the world. Pressure? You don't know the half of it!

    Enough said.......

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    Crazy Armchair Fan/Resident Nerd
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    Officially, I started watching figure skating when my parents leave the Albertville Olympics on TV when was 5....but I REALLY started watching figure skating around the whole Tonya/Nancy debaucle. I remember think it was amazing that she was only 13 and such a good skater, but nothing special. Then Salome and my hormones kicked in, and I thought she was both an amazing skater and incredibly hot. Today...I still think she an amazing skater....and incredibly hot...but that's beside the point LOL.

    The big thing about MK is, even though she probably should have left for the Pros several years ago, for the younger girls coming up, she is a consistent benchmark for them. Figure skating is a sport, but it's also an art, and having MK still in, I think, is a reminder to those younger girls that you have to balance the two sides of the coin if you want to be one of the great ones. I know MK in it because she has the stamina for Torino in 2006 and theoretically, third time's a charm (God, let third time be a charm so we don't have to keep going through this ), but what's so amazing in that she can keep going and keep winning so many years afterwards. And who's to say she's too old? Butyrskaya won a Worlds at 26, Liashenko is still going at 27, Slutskaya is older than Kwan? I'm content to just cross my fingers and see just how far MK will go. The sport is better for it.

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    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    go ahead and laugh... I'll still consider her programs boring LOL I like exberance

    yes she has a wonderful control of edge... but most of her programs just don't come across to me as energetic and fun... sorry just my taste of skating style

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    Oh I'm not laughing at you! At least you gave an argument for your thoughts and clearly defined your preferences.

    It's the bashers who I was thinking of when writing!

  11. #11
    and... World Peace! Tonichelle's Avatar
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    ok LOL sorry for the misunderstanding...

    Kwan deserves the recognition she has... I just don't find her to be a skater that I would shell out the big bucks for....

  12. #12
    ~ Figure Skating Is My Passion ~ Ladskater's Avatar
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    As a former figure skater and now official "arm chair expert" I have to say that Michelle Kwan has certainly "earned her stripes" and a place in the figure skating history books. She is one of the most consistent skaters to come along in some time. Its the quality of her skating that counts. I might point out that being a competitor is a tough role and to continue as long as Michelle has takes much dedication and determination and hard work. I would imagine she has her moments when she would like to move on. It's always rewarding in the skating world to watch someone who really works hard at their skating and improves. I would venture to say Michelle's goal is probably not so much to be world champion again, but to aim for the Olympics. Although, it certainly would be a feat for her to make the history books. Whatever the outcome, you can bet Michelle will skate like a champion and add excitement to the World's competition as a returning Champion.
    Last edited by Ladskater; 03-20-2004 at 12:34 AM.

  13. #13
    Kwan's vodka dealer VIETgrlTerifa's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Tonichelle
    ok LOL sorry for the misunderstanding...

    Kwan deserves the recognition she has... I just don't find her to be a skater that I would shell out the big bucks for....
    Toni, there are a lot of people who hate Kwan for really dumb, illogical reasons. You are NOT one of them. Unlike them, you have reasonable reasons as to why Kwan isn't your cup of tea.

  14. #14
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    Originally posted by Tonichelle
    go ahead and laugh... I'll still consider her programs boring LOL I like exberance

    yes she has a wonderful control of edge... but most of her programs just don't come across to me as energetic and fun... sorry just my taste of skating style
    I agree with you, she skates really well ... but I just find her boring sometimes :\

  15. #15
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    I've seen Michelle skate since 1993. I remember being impressed that she was able to consistently land the difficult triple jumps at such a young age. I think Kristi Yamaguchi once said that she herself didn't have the five triples when she was that young, which might seem funny now when it's expected to see teenagers landing triple Lutzes.

    I remember Michelle's dramatic transformation in 1995/1996 after she lost to Nicole Bobek and her more sophisticated presentation. Before then, I think she was considered mainly a jumper (when's the last time she's been called that ). Some might think that she was trying too hard to look mature but I was completely surprised when I first saw Salome because it was such a big change from last year and it wasn't just the makeup and hair (my mom always complained that she should do something about her pony tail. She was glad when she finally did.). At this point, she was making the most improvements as she was really learning to skate to the music as well as trying out new moves over the next few seasons such as the change of edge spiral, spinning in both directions, and the Charlotte.

    After 1998, I never even doubted that she would stick around for another Olympics yet I admit that I was also getting a little tired of watching Michelle skate. She was still skating well but I just wasn't as interested in most of her new programs at the time. Still, I gasped with the crowd when she fell at the 2002 Olympics.

    I wasn't so sure that she would still be competing after 2002 but when I saw her two new programs at the 2003 Nationals, I had a renewed appreciation for Michelle. She performed to two excellent musical choices with seemingly more passion than ever before plus she was nearly able to reproduce both programs at Worlds. It's also interesting to hear how loud the crowds have gotten, to hear so many express their love for one person.

    Now, I appreciate seeing her every time she's on the ice because who knows who much longer she's going to be skating.

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