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Thread: My thoughts on Michelle at 2004 Worlds

  1. #46
    Custom Title Joesitz's Avatar
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    Apache and Mathman =

    Michelle's SP was skated very well but a little on the 'holding back' side. I think her 4th place in the SP was simply because Sasha, and Shizuka skated better. Although she placed behind Miki, I don't think she deserved that. Miki has not yet arrived.

    There is a difference in seeing something live and on tape. It wasn't until her concluding footwork did MK suddenly come to life. And Sasha was on a roll and Shizuka was coming into her own.

    Michele"s LP was incredibly good LIVE. The drama of Tosca really showed up and her second place finish in the LP was well deserved. Had she thrown in a 3x3 we could be arguing about lst place in the LP.

    I don't think she's through yet. The work ahead will be difficult because she hasn't worked on the 3x3 combos, and she must have them Shizuka, Miki and Carolina do have them and and MK can not rely on all three missing them in competition.

    She's now the underdog and that may suit her better.

    Also she needs the GP practice - not for the medals but for the experience of the CoP.

    Joe

  2. #47
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    Yeah, I agree, she needs the GP events if she plans to stay.

    I'm glad she bring that Tosca to alive.

  3. #48
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    I dont think MK needs to do the GP events, but she does need to do a lot of work. Let's face it, I love Michelle but her programs are not up to par at this stage with the other girls. She need to have more difficult jump sequences and for the love of st. crispin, some new faster spin positions. I would also like to see more innovative choreography. This was the first year I was a little bored with the same old same old from MK. I think she is getting by at this stage with her consistency and her name - but if other skaters have a good competition they are going to beat her. She shoudn't have to count on others making mistakes for her to win, she needs to be more aggressive.

  4. #49
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    I know it's late, but her are two responses:

    Volchkova did not tank in the quali round. She skated a brilliant program with spectacular, high toe jumps until she fell on the 2nd 3Z attempt, which you could predict a mile away from her tentativeness going in. (Same with Kwan's 3R attempt in the qualis, and Cohen's and Sebestyen's [2nd] 3S attempt in the LP. It's like slo mo where you just want to scream, "D O N ' T D O I T! .") She even improved her layback spin to where it is now in a correct attitude position, not knee down like she used to, and in a very fast combo spin managed to grab her blade at full speed in higher attitude position to go directly into the 1-hand Biellmann spin. She was scored as if she tanked, when I think she should have been marked ahead of both Kostner and Slutskaya. It was clear that Volchkova was being sacrificed.

    Re: Kwan's SP: There were a couple of things about her skate were not great: a telegraph into a small 3flutz/2T with not much flowout and losing speed in the middle of her straightline footwork. I saw this program in DC, and her flow in it built from one end of the rink to the other and was really amazing, while in Dortmund, she was heading in the direction where I was sitting and she seemed to die in the middle, and I found myself leaning forward in my seat, unconsciously trying to will her along. It didn't have the speed or flow it had last year.

    I don't think Kwan should have been any higher than she was, time violation or not. I think that Kostner and Sebestyen should have been first and second, with Cohen, and, possibly Ando ahead of Kwan. (Ando was really fine in the SP, even if her 3R at the end of her combo was underrotated. She was a different skater than in the LP.) Arakawa was tight in the SP, night and day away from her quali and LP skates, and even though she landed her 3/3 in a corner where I couldn't see the landing, it was clear from her landing position that something had gone awry.

  5. #50
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    There is no way Kostner's and Ando's SP programs were bettter than Kwan's. I still don't see the big deal about Kostner, she still looks very juniorish and her placement was a gift. Ando, on the other hand, is almost there but not quite. If she works on her presentation and remains consistent she'll be a force to be reckoned with. If Kwan wouldn't have had the time deduction I would have place them:
    1) Cohen
    2) Kwan
    3)Sebastion
    4)Ando
    5)Arakawa (combo severely cheated, spins short on rotation

  6. #51
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    Thanks for posting, sk8watcher, and welcome! I too thought Michelle's SP was right up there with Sasha's, maybe better. But I have a lot of respect for Hockeyfan's take, too, since Hockeyfan got to see it live. Usually, Michelle looks even better live than on TV, because of how she can soak up and give back the energy in the building. But maybe it didn't work that way this time. There are so many intangibles.

    Mathman

  7. #52
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    Oh, I forgot that the original question had to do with top athletes and their longevity.

    I think Michelle has proven that it exists in Figure Skating. Recently, many skaters have taken the gold and fled eligible skating. Michelle just keeps collecting medals. Hats off to her.

    Joe

  8. #53
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    Originally posted by Mathman
    Usually, Michelle looks even better live than on TV, because of how she can soak up and give back the energy in the building.
    There wasn't much energy in the building for her to soak up. Not that she was given a tepid response, but she didn't get much more than many other skaters. Until after Cohen's LP program, where the crowd dropped her like a hot potato, she received among the biggest ovations, including those greeting her, and I thought the contrast to crowd response greeting Kwan was noticeable.

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    Originally posted by hockeyfan228
    [B]There wasn't much energy in the building for her to soak up. Not that she was given a tepid response, but she didn't get much more than many other skaters.
    At least up to the streaker incident Michelle did not have to skate under a death threat like 96 GPF. LOL from the tv, it seemed that the crowd or at least some audience gave Michelle a standing ovation after her long program. So she changed their mind? Peggy said Michelle "settled the audience" after the streaker scare. So some skaters received more cheers prior to their skate and less after their performance, and some other skaters received less cheers prior to their long program but got the crowd or at least part of the audience standing on their feet after.

  10. #55
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    Originally posted by gezando
    At least up to the streaker incident Michelle did not have to skate under a death threat like 96 GPF. LOL from the tv, it seemed that the crowd or at least some audience gave Michelle a standing ovation after her long program. So she changed their mind? Peggy said Michelle "settled the audience" after the streaker scare. So some skaters received more cheers prior to their skate and less after their performance, and some other skaters received less cheers prior to their long program but got the crowd or at least part of the audience standing on their feet after.
    On the whole when a favored skater went on the ice, even before s/he was announced, the cheers started then; there wasn't that much when Kwan took the ice to warm up. There was definitely an ovation of support after the streaker was kicked off the ice, but it wasn't like there was a pulse in the crowd during her skate either. People weren't living and dying by every jump, like in DC, which is to be expected outside of the US. There was definitely appreciation for how she handled herself in the LP post streaker. But there wasn't much before or after her quali or SP skates, and I don't know how much there would have been if Mr. .com hadn't shown up.

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    Well, Michelle or any skater needs to learn that the crowds may not always like them. BTW, you are part of the audience, I am sure you have your favorite, and love that one skater better than any other, and gave her the loudest applause, and gave a less of an applause to your non favorites. Non favorite skaters need to learn to rise above all that. I think Michelle has over the years learnt to handle herself in all sorts of situations. She even had to skate under a death threat in Paris. So what if she wasn't the crowd favorite in quali, sp and warm up, so what if you didn't really cheer that much for her before or after the skate. I think it is a good experience for her to learn that fans are not always there to cheer her, and deal with it. According to the Earl Woods, Tiger Woods school, they prepared Tiger to deal with death threats, ill will disruptions, and all sorts of situations. Tiger Woods gave hate mail priority over fan mail. He prepared himself as if no one out there wanted him to succeed.

    You said what if streaker incident did not happen? But it did. Peggy hinted that there was nervous unease energy when the streaker was on the ice for 4 whole minutes. Michelle took the siutation well, and "settled down the audience" that is the mark of a true champion. She deserved the cheers and the standing ovation afterwards. She deserved all the 6.0s relative to Cohen's 5.8s and 5.9s. I got the impression the ovation Michelle received after the lp was a good size, that is more than just fans appreciating a skater finishing a skate, i.e. she changed the minds of some fans. Imagine Josee lost her concentration just because Harding's mess with her boots. Some skaters lost the chance for gold because someone skated a program worthy of standing ovation before them. Michelle skated a very respectable program. The constant comparing her Dortmund lp to DC lp is not that relevant to me. Judges called the lp and the whole competition right, I am glad they did not use DC's lp to measure against the Dortmund lp for both Cohen and Kwan. Cohen's lp at Dortmund was no where near her performance at DC either.

    What if there was no streaker, we never know, maybe Michelle would 7 triples, maybe Ando would land her quad sal, maybe Carolina would place first in the lp.
    Last edited by gezando; 04-11-2004 at 05:26 PM.

  12. #57
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    I was also in Dortmund and watched the Ladies Division. Michelle Kwan got the same amount of acknowledgement as any other contestant except Irina Slutskaya. Irina is the crowd favorite in Europe win or lose!!!

    Joe

  13. #58
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    I think part of why it seemed MK wasn't getting much more applause than other skaters wasn't because they weren't cheering much for her, but because the audience were cheering loudly for everyone! It seemed like a really supportive audience to me, really willing skaters to succeed, and rewarding them for whatever they managed.:D

    k

  14. #59
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    Kateri - What you say makes sense. the crowd was enjoying a very special Worlds. Everyone got an ovation of some kind.

    Joe

  15. #60
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    Originally posted by gezando
    Well, Michelle or any skater needs to learn that the crowds may not always like them. BTW, you are part of the audience, I am sure you have your favorite, and love that one skater better than any other, and gave her the loudest applause, and gave a less of an applause to your non favorites. Non favorite skaters need to learn to rise above all that. I think Michelle has over the years learnt to handle herself in all sorts of situations. She even had to skate under a death threat in Paris. So what if she wasn't the crowd favorite in quali, sp and warm up, so what if you didn't really cheer that much for her before or after the skate. I think it is a good experience for her to learn that fans are not always there to cheer her, and deal with it. According to the Earl Woods, Tiger Woods school, they prepared Tiger to deal with death threats, ill will disruptions, and all sorts of situations. Tiger Woods gave hate mail priority over fan mail. He prepared himself as if no one out there wanted him to succeed.
    I agree with you, but found it curious that Kwan was applauded like anyone else, not like a five-time and defending World Champion, unlike Slutskaya and Cohen, who got massive ovations every time they stepped on the ice. (Hard to gauge Calvez' rinkwide ovation, because the French fan clubs were out in force with air horns!)

    You said what if streaker incident did not happen? But it did. Peggy hinted that there was nervous unease energy when the streaker was on the ice for 4 whole minutes.
    Not uniformly. The guy skated as if he needed to hold onto a guard rail, so if he wasn't going to shoot or throw a knife at someone, he wasn't getting anywhere fast. He pretty quickly took his shirt off and put on a tutu, and there was a lot of disgust with him. It took several minutes, though, for the security forces in street shoes to catch up with him, which increased the general disgust.

    Michelle took the siutation well, and "settled down the audience" that is the mark of a true champion. She deserved the cheers and the standing ovation afterwards.
    I agree. My point was that part of that ovation was for how she handled the situation.

    She deserved all the 6.0s relative to Cohen's 5.8s and 5.9s.
    I don't think Cohen deserved all of those 5.8's and 5.9's, either, not for that skate. I agree that Kwan's pre scores should have been higher than Cohen's.

    The constant comparing her Dortmund lp to DC lp is not that relevant to me. Judges called the lp and the whole competition right, I am glad they did not use DC's lp to measure against the Dortmund lp for both Cohen and Kwan. Cohen's lp at Dortmund was no where near her performance at DC either.
    I, too, am glad they judged the competition, not DC. It might not be relevant to you to compare them, but to me it's important to note the differences, paricularly because the magic "6.0"'s are taken as more than placeholders, but also as endorsements of perfection.

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