Here's something to help keep occupied those of you trying to get your skating fix while avoiding Worlds spoilers.
Here are some similarities between figure skating and tennis which I find interesting. In both sports:
-- The sport is extremely global and highly popular. Athletes come from all over the world, and different events are held all over the world. Athletes choose which events to sign up for in advance, and receive ranking points based upon their performances. Some of these events form a set called a "Grand Prix."
-- At these events, each discipline holds contests at different age levels.
-- Top athletes are lured to events by cash and/or gift incentives.
-- Ladies wear skirts on the field of play, unlike in any other major sport.
-- The top female athletes are, by and large, household names (Fleming, Kwan, Graf, Evert, etc.).
-- A good portion of the women are babes.
-- One of the sport's female icons (Peggy Fleming, Billie Jean King) is regarded as opening various doors for all other female athletes in the late '60's / early '70's.
-- Athletes can compete as individuals and in teams of two. Some do both.
-- The sport contains an awful lot of Russian athletes.
-- The management agency IMG has their hands in the sport up to their elbows, to the extent that they can influence the calendar of events, and represent a lot of the athletes.
-- For the most part, once an athlete has taken the field of play, they're on their own until the job is complete. The coach cannot do a thing.
-- The worldwide organization is made up of national federations or associations and works with the International Olympic Committee.
-- In addition to international "regular" competition, someone started a league of teams, with each team representing a given city, and devised rules for team play and a season-long schedule leading to a league championship. These leagues aren't very well known by the public (in fact, for figure skating this just happened recently).
-- The sport is covered pretty knowledgeably by Christine Brennan.
-- One of the most accomplished and most famous women in the history of the sport is a German (Witt, Graf).
-- A perfect score (at least for now) in figure skating is represented by a series of 6.0's. A perfect score in tennis is represented by a series of 6-0's.
-- Less than a year apart, both sports suffered a bizarre incident in which a top-level woman was attacked in public by the follower of a rival, solely so that the rival could do better with the other woman out of the way.
-- People dissatisfied with the status quo, and frustrated that their complaints are falling on deaf ears, have broken away from their regular organizations to form a new one from the ground up, both within the past two months. In tennis, a group of male players want to form the IMTA because they're fed up with the ATP. In figure skating, a group of skating officials and professional skaters (the amateurs are too timid to speak up for fear of getting their marks lowered) want to form the World Skating Federation because they're fed up with the ISU.
Of course there are interesting differences (beyond the obvious). In tennis, men's finals are always played last at coed tournaments, thereby signifying that that is the main event. In figure skating, the ladies' competition is always decided last, as they are the most popular.
Also: Tennis has player unions and associations. Skaters can't / won't dare form such a thing, perhaps out of fear that they'll be judged on the ice for making too much noise off of it.
And last, but certainly not least...figure skating only has one surface.