Page 5 of 6 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 5 6 LastLast
Results 61 to 75 of 88

Thread: Hersh Cohen Article (unfavorable)

  1. #61
    Medalist
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    97
    Quote Originally Posted by ritymeez
    I just wanted to sort out what Hersh wrote and Wagner said. While reading this, it didn't seem like Robin was that harsh on Sasha, but that's my p.o.v..
    I re-read the article, and you are right. What I meant was that you're getting one person's opinion (I said Robin, sounds like I should have said Hersh ), and it's biased. I just don't think it's fair to say she "brought it on herself".

  2. #62
    Down With It
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13,480
    Quote Originally Posted by elingrace4eva
    I really don't think that's fair. I mean, we're getting one person's opinion, and you have to look at the source. It's a coach who Sasha left, and, apparantly, it was not an amicable parting.

    [snip]

    All I know, is we're only hearing one side of the argument. And regardless of whether or not she "brought it on herself" as you put it, it still mustn't feel that good to be bashed by a former friend in the newspaper.
    IMO, Hersh doesn't even have to add his comments. Wagner's quotes tell the whole story...they speak for themselves.

    I don't know Sasha. And I'm not going to say that she's this sweet, loving person, because I have no way of knowing that. (And, I would tend to doubt it, for strong competitors are not sweet people). However, other than these comments from Robin, I also have no justification for thinking she's a *****.
    There's no real knowing what these people are really like, and IMO it's a waste of time trying to figure that out. But what we fans CAN look at is their persona- their "public profile" (how they come across in public, from articles, interview, etc.). The mistake here is assuming that that's who they REALLY are.

  3. #63
    Down With It
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13,480
    Quote Originally Posted by elingrace4eva
    I re-read the article, and you are right. What I meant was that you're getting one person's opinion (I said Robin, sounds like I should have said Hersh ), and it's biased. I just don't think it's fair to say she "brought it on herself".
    Hmm...not too sure here...I'm more likely to believe the coach in this case. The skater will just try to cover all the gritty details up with fluff (which is perfectly fine, and what they SHOULD do BTW). JMO however...

  4. #64
    On the Ice
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    California
    Posts
    29
    I wasn't really directing my post at you elingrace4eva. I just put it there because there were many people that seemed to think Robin Wagner was harsh with her comments when I thought it was quite tame.

  5. #65
    Medalist
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    97
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Dog
    Hmm...not too sure here...I'm more likely to believe the coach in this case. The skater will just try to cover all the gritty details up with fluff (which is perfectly fine, and what they SHOULD do BTW). JMO however...
    I feel like I should step out...because I'm a Sasha fan, and it is hard for me to think of her as anything but bad. But it feels like people are jumping on this topic because it's Sasha, and it's easy to bash Sasha. If it was an article where Frank Carroll was bashing Michelle, people would be screaming for him to keep his comments to himself (myself included). But, since it's Sasha, it's OK.

  6. #66
    Medalist
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    97
    Quote Originally Posted by ritymeez
    I wasn't really directing my post at you elingrace4eva. I just put it there because there were many people that seemed to think Robin Wagner was harsh with her comments when I thought it was quite tame.
    Oh, I got that . I just realized I screwed up, so I decided to fix it, no worries.

  7. #67
    Down With It
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13,480
    Quote Originally Posted by elingrace4eva
    I feel like I should step out...because I'm a Sasha fan, and it is hard for me to think of her as anything but bad. But it feels like people are jumping on this topic because it's Sasha, and it's easy to bash Sasha. If it was an article where Frank Carroll was bashing Michelle, people would be screaming for him to keep his comments to himself (myself included). But, since it's Sasha, it's OK.
    I wouldn't go that far, saying that people are bashing Cohen. I don't think they are, they are just putting in their opinions. But because (as you admit) you're a Cohen fan, it may SEEM to you like they are bashing her because the comments aren't positive.

    Maybe it wasn't the most PC thing to do what Wagner did to Cohen. But the thing is, she HAS spoken and the truth (however harsh you may think it is) is out, and open to fan speculation. (Most) Cohen admirers will do their best to disregard the contents of article, and Cohen detractors will try to get the worst out of the article.

    I do agree there are a lot of Kwan fans here and there tends to be a Kwan bias or double-standard at times where it's OK (or not OK!) for Kwan to do something and the opposite is true for any other skater. But other than that, it's all good (I think lol).

  8. #68
    Medalist
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    97
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Dog
    But other than that, it's all good (I think lol).
    It is all good And I'm afraid if I stay in this thread too much longer I'm going to put my foot in my mouth, and I really don't want to do that

    We'll just see tonight (or tomorrow, if you're like me and can't read spoilers ) whether or not she can do it. I'll let the skating decide.

  9. #69
    Down With It
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13,480
    Quote Originally Posted by elingrace4eva
    It is all good And I'm afraid if I stay in this thread too much longer I'm going to put my foot in my mouth, and I really don't want to do that

    We'll just see tonight (or tomorrow, if you're like me and can't read spoilers ) whether or not she can do it. I'll let the skating decide.
    I will try to be like you and wait till tomorrow (you never know nowadays with accidental spoiler titles, giveaways in posts, etc. ) For this reason I'm just glad the LP will be shown live.

  10. #70
    Medalist
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Posts
    97
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Dog
    you never know nowadays with accidental spoiler titles, giveaways in posts, etc. :
    Grrrrr....I know, I was trying so hard not to find out about Pairs yesterday, and there it was, shining back at me. it sucked.

  11. #71
    Down With It
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    13,480
    I think the thing to do is:

    - Stay away from skater-specific forums as spoilers tend to thrive there (since the fans want to know badly how their skater did)

    - Stay out of Event discussion forums once the SP starts (there will be live threads, and you run the risk of being spoiled with a giveaway title or post later on)

    - Even here in the Edge, I've seen numerous spoilers, so be on your guard

    - THE #1 FOOLPROOF WAY TO PREVENT BEING SPOILED: STAY OFF THE INTERNET, TURN OFF THE TV, AND KEEP AWAY FROM ANY MEDIA (local newspapers, etc.). Yes, I know that's very hard nowadays but that's the only way you can GUARANTEE not being spoiled

  12. #72
    On Edge Piel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Bayfield, WI
    Posts
    3,973
    i can guarantee that you will not be spoiled if you read our local newspaper the only time they carry skating is if an American wins an OGM. After all it's not a REAL sport like NASCAR :banging:

  13. #73
    Custom Woman
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    New York, NY
    Posts
    1,770

    A 2nd Catch-22

    Since Wagner's comments and comments on the boards have focused, at least in part, on Sasha's work ethic, ie, is she or is she not a hard worker? here are my 2 cents (okay, we know it will be at least 2 bucks) re this 2nd Catch-22. Skip ahead if you wish. This is the fiirst big honkin' post by Rgirl of the New Year.

    Every athlete, but especially elite ones, have to find the right balance for their body between overtraining and undertraining. Overtraining generally leads to injury, but prior to injury it can cause poor performance. Undertraining generally leads to poor performance, but along the way injuries due to lack of conditioning may be part of the cause of those poor performances.

    During the '02-'03 and '03-'04 seasons with Tarasova, Sasha won almost all her GP events, including the '03 GPF and seemed to be on a tear with Tarasova's "Swan Lake" garnering Total Scores that were 20 and 30 points higher than her nearest competitor. Yet she was criticized for her inconsistency with jumps, problems with jump technique, and a lack of a triple-triple. No wonder she was obsessed with "if only one more triple" at Worlds. It's not an excuse, skaters have to put things in perspective, especially with the changes that came with the COP. Also, in reading the boards, reading the sports criticism, and listening to the commentators, we all tend to have jumps-on-the-brain too. After all, how many times have we read, "Cohen has yet to prove she can do a seven-triple program consistently and thus far she's only successfully completed one, at the '03 Worlds QR."

    Anyway, with the COP it seems from Wagner's comments that she may have felt pressure from two areas (of course this is just conjecture since none of us knows what goes on in Cohen's mind). On the one hand, she had Wagner saying she had to work on a lot of her basic skills, which I happen to agree with, and I believe that Sasha agreed with too, at least in theory. On the other hand, the media is all "Where's her 3/3? Where are her seven-triple LPs?" Then there were the voices calling for more sophisticated music and choreography.

    However, under the GP schedule with Tarasova, during which TAT changed "Swan Lake" for every GP competition trying to maximize the total points, Sasha became overworked and sick, which led, as I understand it, to TAT and Sasha's disagreement over her participation in the '03 December ISU event, which IIRC was only a week before the GPF. Cohen felt it was important to fulfill her obligation to the USFSA and ISU and compete, even though she was sick. TAT, understandably, didn't understand the importance, or perhaps I should say the politics, of these events coming from a very different federation.

    The point is, in trying to live up to all of Tarasova's demands with the near weekly changes in choreography, the travel, and competition, Sasha got into a situation, I believe, of overtraining. Unfortunately, because Cohen and TAT couldn't agree on the importance of the ISU event, there was simply a stalemate and no opportunity to come up with a Plan B; i.e., given that it would be a bad move politically to withdraw from the December ISU event and given that Sasha is sick, try to find a middle ground where Sasha would still compete but with an intentionally watered down version of "Swan Lake" to conserve her energy. Go in not trying to win or perhaps even medal, but simply give the best performance under the circumstances of being ill and be prepared to be criticized for it. IMO, it was one of those "damned if she competed, damned if she didn't" situations; however, these things happen and I think it's important for skaters to learn how to deal with them and move on.

    Instead, the whole coaching arrangement fell apart, although I understand there were other reasons and that the ISU disagreement was more or less the last straw, Sasha tried to skate all-out, fell all-out, and was still sick for the GPF a week later, where she skated poorly and lost to Fumie Suguri.

    Getting back to Wagner and the handshake agreement on everything Sasha needed to work on, as I said before, I believe that in her heart, Sasha agreed with everything Wagner expected of her. But in trying to balance travel time with training the number of different things Wagner seemed to expect her to master between Nationals and Worlds, it seems Sasha either regressed to old patterns, felt overwhelmed, or perhaps just needed more time. I don't agree with Hersch's statement that he feels Sasha is in love with the way she sees herself and content with what she can do. Rather, I've sensed great frustration during her interviews when she makes mistakes, a sense of "Why, why, WHY can't I do in competition what I do every day in practice?"

    Wagner and Hersch assert that she says she wants to work hard but then doesn't, yet what I saw her do during her 18 months with Tarasova belies that assertion. But then I'm not in the rink watching her train. One thing I have experienced, both with myself and in observation, is that there is useful hard work and useless hard work. Useful hard work, obviously, is where the skater, even if she is not making immediate visible progress feels she is going in the right direction, that things are coming together the right way even if the results are not apparent right away. Useless hard work is when the skater is doing something over and over without feeling any connection to a purpose, whether it be immediate or in the future.

    There are few things more frustrating to a highly motivated athlete, and at this level I feel all the skaters are highly motivated, than feeling she is putting in joules of energy and excessive time into a training regimen that isn't working for her. It's one thing to risk burn-out and injury in the pursuit of making real improvements; it's quite another to risk these things in the pursuit of something you don't believe will ultimately lead to improvements. Whether Wagner's total program would have done that for Sasha had she believed in it, we'll never know. Apparently, Cohen didn't believe in it after a certain point and once belief in the coach goes, you might as well leave the coach.

    Another thing that can happen is mental overload. In a two year period, Sasha was in a position to try to absorb everything Tarasova wanted to teach her, on top of everything she'd learned from Nicks, as well as deciding which things from Nicks to throw out, and then absorb Wagner's methods. Plus with Wagner she worked with choreographers Marina Zouva and Igor Schpilband, who I'm sure had their ideas to offer. It's one of the ultimate cliches, but "too many cooks...."

    I've saw this happen with a lot of ballet companies when they expanded their repetoire from classic ballet choreography to works by contemporary choreographers with very little, if any, time to study the techniques and theories of the various contemporary choreographers. You'd see dancers who had impeccable ballet technique and who looked as if they could master any kind of movement in a snap out with injuries caused not by unusually difficult movement, just repetition of movement their bodies were not trained to do. To this end, Tiffany Stiegler made what I thought was a revealing comment when she said how difficult it was to make the change from pairs to ice dancing. The casual observer might think, "Ice dancing more difficult than pairs?! Is she kidding?" But it's not a matter of one being more difficult, althought pairs is certainly more dangerous, it's a matter of what you've been trained to do. When you have a lot of different voices in your head from various coaches, often with theories and advice that are at odds with each other, it's no surprise that at least in the early stages the skater may regress or become injured.

    Finally, it may be that Sasha lacks the X factor that makes the difference between a beautiful skater who wins lesser events and is consistently in the top four at Worlds and a true champion. I think it is true that Sasha expected a lot of herself early on, but then so did fans and the media. Yet if we look, for example, at Shen and Zhao as pairs skaters and Irina Slutskaya's career as a singles, it took S&Z nearly 10 years to truly fulfill their potential, even while working with a coach who was ready to do anything to improve their skating. And certainly there is no doubt about S&Z's work ethic. Irina also went through a terrible slump from '97 until '00 in both mind and body. Even when she came out of that slump skating better than ever, she still could not beat Michelle at Worlds until '02, which was Michelle's own odd year with coaching, skating, and how she saw herself. Now Irina has had to pull herself up yet again in the face of her own and her mother's illness.

    So perhaps part of the problem when a uniquely gifted skater comes along lies with our own expectations and American culture. We seem to have a split personality when it comes to our celebrities, whether they be athletes, actors, musicians, whatever. We thrill at the new face who seems like an overnight success, yet we also love those who have stood the test of time. It's as if we want skaters to become champions really quickly, but not too quickly since we also want them to "pay their dues." Then we want them to stay champions for a long time, but not so long that we get tired of them. We at least want them to keep reinventing themselves, or at least many do. It is the rare skater, like Michelle, who can keep the public interest at a pitch for over a decade.

    Maybe Sasha felt she was working as hard as she could without getting results. Without seeing results and with Sasha not being the 17-year-old Sarah Hughes who did her homework in Wagner's car as they made the four hour commute every day from Long Island to New Jersey, PLUS the hours of training, Sasha probably seemed like anything but a hard worker by comparison. I do think Sasha's jump technique improved during her time with Wagner, but when Wagner was announced as Sasha's new coach, I did wonder how Wagner would adjust to coaching a skater who was not only older than Sarah but who also obviously had a very different personality. It's not as if Wagner had coached a number of elite skaters before. She had devoted herself to Sarah for many years. I thought it was rather like a tutor of a few individual students suddenly teaching a class of 30. The teaching skills are there; the experience with multitude of different personalities is not.

    Ultimately I think Sasha has to adjust her perceptions and expectations of herself to be a champion, and she might not be capable of doing that. Only time will tell. I don't think she focuses too much on winning. If she does, so does every other skater in the top six of each discipline. I think she works hard but is mindful of the consequences of overwork or the wrong kind of training resulting in injury. I think she does want to improve skills such as her edging, speed, etc. However, when your component scores or presentation marks are consistently high and you've only ever skated one clean seven-triple LP in competition, can we blame her for wanting to focus on her jumps? I don't know if she really appreciates how great the difference is between her stiff, flat performances, eg, '04 Worlds LP, and her heartfelt, sparkling ones, eg, '04 Worlds QR. I think she's aware there's a difference, but I don't think she understands how important and, frankly, how enormous that difference is. From the results of '04 Worlds, she may think it was a close shave between silver and gold, when, IMO, based on her LP alone, the difference between her QR and LP was a huge gap between possible gold and not even making the podium or possibly the top six.

    So perhaps the judges are not doing Sasha any favors by giving her high component marks where she doesn't deserve them. IMO, she does in certain areas, but has been overmarked in others. Yet the COP makes it obvious to see where you've lost major points because of a missed jump or combo. It's much harder to see with the component scores.

    I hope Cohen has learned from Tarasova and Wagner and that she really is a "more savvy skater." I know I've been frustrated watching her remain in the same ballerina style of choreography and even worse music. TAT's "Swan Lake" was an exception for me, especially the version she did at Trophee Lalique. Unfortunately, you can't force sophistication on someone, especially someone with a mind of her own.

    From now until the '06 Olympics and Worlds, the proof will be in what Cohen does or doesn't do on the ice. After that, it will be interesting to see if she chooses to be a competitor for the long haul or decides that a vehicle such as SOI (if it's still around) is more her style. When Mathman said "There's one thing she can do that will shut everybody up," I felt he meant, "Skate cleanly and up to her performance potential on a consistent basis." Of course it's easier said than done, but if I'm reading Mathman correctly, that is indeed what Sasha Cohen needs to do.
    Rgirl

    PS Off-topic: I saw Tiffany Chin skate on a holiday program, "Gershwin on Ice." In many ways, Chin was the Sasha Cohen of her generation. Chin skated/skates in a fluid balletic style somewhere between Dorothy Hamill and Sasha Cohen, IMO, but with much more personality than Cohen. Yet she always lost the US big ones to Roz Sumners who was a better competitor. I was lucky enough to see Chin skate live at the 1984 Nationals. After Roz won the '84 Olympic silver medal, she had, as we all know, a very long pro career, first with either Disney or Ice Capades (I forget which), then the bulk of it with SOI. Roz as a performer is fine, though not my cup of tea; but watching Tiffany 20 years later, still skating with that gorgeous quality and a great big 2Axel to boot, I thought, "How sad that her lack of competitive skills prevented audiences from seeing this stunning skater as often as they saw Roslyn Sumners (nothing against Roz)." Competitive achievement counts a lot in pro skating, especially now that the interest and money of the '90s is no longer around. I'd be disappointed if Sasha's performance opportunities were limited as they were for Chin because she is unable to get over the hump of her competitive problems.

  14. #74
    Custom Title
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    117
    Rgirl, that was a FABULOUS discussion of Sasha, and you are right on. We often forget that figure skaters are also people with many of the same problems, physically and emotionally, as everyone else. I wish the best for Sasha, along with Michelle, Jenny, and every other figure skater. I don't have an overall favorite - my favorite is the one I am watching on tv or reading or thinking about at that moment. Every one of the skaters whether top national/world level or the children on the morning ice with me, is working as hard as they are physically and emotionally capable of at that time. It's unfortunate that the physical and emotional states often don't match, but that is a fact of life.

    Thanks again for a great analysis!

    Marcia

  15. #75
    Tripping on the Podium
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    Dover, NH
    Posts
    63

    Is it "REAL?"

    "After all it's not a REAL sport like NASCAR."



    LOL!!! I loved this comment!

Page 5 of 6 FirstFirst 1 2 3 4 5 6 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Cohen's success tinged with uncertainty (article re.Nicks & Cohen)
    By R.D. in forum 2004-05 Figure Skating archives
    Replies: 24
    Last Post: 03-28-2005, 08:51 PM
  2. Hersh Article- Kwan: A Master's Touch (with interesting Cohen quote)
    By R.D. in forum 2004-05 Figure Skating archives
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 01-18-2005, 10:40 AM
  3. New Hersh article on Kwan
    By nymkfan51 in forum 2003-04 Figure Skating archives
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 01-05-2004, 07:22 AM
  4. Hersh SA article (MK centered)
    By ltlpearl in forum 2003-04 Figure Skating archives
    Replies: 29
    Last Post: 10-26-2003, 04:12 PM
  5. Wash. Post Article on Sasha
    By sk8cynic in forum 2002-03 Figure Skating archives
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 01-13-2003, 09:41 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •