Quote Originally Posted by Red Dog
MK just hasn't really competed enough in the past two years, IMO, to be considered still in the game. If she really wanted to take a break, IMO she might as well just have taken the year (s) off. This has resulted in her (for the time being) being surpassed by others, and therefore why she isn't 1st anymore.
I'm not completely certain on this, but I remember some interviews on why she wasn't competing as much. She said she had talked with friends and they advised her that it would be too hard to come back if she took a complete break from the competitive scene. She also said that these friends had told her she would know when she was ready to stop competing. This was during the COI tour so I believe those friends would include Elvis Stoiko and Brian Boitano. It wouldn't surprise me if Elvis was the one advising her to not make a complete break. Look at what happened to Todd Eldredge when he stopped competing and came back. I remember seeing some quotes from him on how difficult it was to come back after being completely out of the Nationals/Worlds loop.

I don't believe that Michelle has been pounding out 3/3's left and right on what I term her "mini-break" (although she probably started working on new combos) but her basics have improved quite a bit. How many times have we heard that last 5% is the hardest improvement to make and I have noticed improvement. I believe that she is working on the core and working back up to a tremendous techincal arsenal.