Well, I guess I should start calling it correctly by it's official name - NJS (or has that changed again??). At any rate, I am putting off yard and house work today, so thanks in advance supporting me in my procrastination efforts.
I have "cut my teeth" learning the new system more so in the ladies field than the others, but I hope others will start threads to help us learn more about the men's, pairs and dance divisions. This topic started up in earnest on the "Top 3 Ladies from Worlds" thread. I thought maybe there was enough interest shown where this topic should be honored with it's own thread.
With 7 jumping passes allowed, jumps naturally (as they should IMO) carry the greatest weight in the TES department. So all of the top ladies need to have this area in order. But there are points to be gained in the other areas as well.
Carolina - I hope her Worlds finish gives her the confidence and drive to solidify and gain consistency in her jumps throughout the next season. That's clearly an area where she has a technical advantage, and she needs to be solid to "work it." Mean time, I think she needs to get most if not all of her non-jump elements are at least level 3 (assuming level 2 from this year roughly equates to level 3 next year on the 4 level system). Barring an Oly meltdown, I think that's what it will take for Carolina and any of the ladies to make the podium at Oly's.
Irina - I think she's got the jump thing in hand - at least she did this season (Euro's being the exception). I think she needs to REALLY read the new Irina Biellmann rules being implemented for next year. If I understand the new rules correctly (which may not be the case) I think the "clock starts ticking" for number of revolutions in the case of spins, and number of seconds holding the position in the case of spirals once the foot is above the head. Maybe someone who knows more than I do can clarify this: 1) Is my understanding of this new rule correct? and if so, 2) were her spin revolutions and spiral position holds this past season enough to get her the full point value, or was she short in revolutions / time held? Other than that, I think she's in good shape if she can put out there next year what she did this year on the technical front. (well, and stop travelling the spins just in case the judges start paying attention to that, as they should)
Sasha - Gotta get the jumps under control. I don't think she can play for gold without a 3/3. At least she included a 3/3 seq. this year (not well done at Worlds, but it was in there as an attempt) so looks like she's focused on that need. In the non-jump areas, I think spins are her strongest suit. Since there are 4 of them in the LP, going for level 4 on most or all of them would give her a point gaining opportunity. Steps are interesting in that of the non-jump elements, it's the thing that is most highly rewarded in GOE (i.e. a +3 GOE is worth 3 points at level 3 this year / level 4 next year v. a +3 GOE being worth 1.5 points for spins and lower level footwork). Are Sasha's edges sound enough to get to level 4 in either the spiral (her best shot for that IMO) or the straight/circular/sperpentine steps (her worst shot IMO)? I think if I were Sasha I would concentrate on the spins.
MK - Baring a complete meltdown, I think the podium will require a 3/3 - especially the top of the podium. So I hope she can bring those from practice ice to competition ice. With MK's edges, I thinkher best opportunity to rack up some big points in non-jump elements is in the step sequences - both spiral and the other. With the GOE advantage if she can get level 4's, that could make up some ground where Sasha in particular (IMO) has an advantage. And Irina too if not for the traveling. I'm sure MK will be working on maximizing all elements (as every lady should and I'm sure will be doing) I think the step area should take high priority.
Shiz - OH how I want to see Shiz get it back next year!!! What she needs to do is general and obvious - get the jumps back, get the confidence back, and do your thing.
Miki - She's GOT to have her jumps under her to have a podium hope. On the non-jump side of the house, I think her biggest opportunity for scoring improvement is in going for quality (rather than level) improvements that could positively impact GOE. And maybe try to get the single level 1 element from World's up one notch.
Poykio - In the jump department I'm not sure where she's at with 3/3 potential. Maybe a 3/3 Sequence to get the ball rolling? She had 3 level 1 non-jump elements, so that's a point opportunity to up those a notch. I haven't seen enough of her on TV to have an opinion about whether she's a stronger spinner, spiraler, or step sequencer to prioritize that.
Fumie - Is there a 3/3 in there somewhere?? I hope so because I love watching her skate and would love to see her as a strong podium contender next year. What she did at 4CC was gorgeous, but the technical ante I think would have to be "upped" in both jump and at least one non-jump element for her to contend, barring a splatfest.
Well, that was WAY more than 2 cents worth of my opinon. I'm sure most people attempting to read this are asleep by now. I have a secret wish to challenge RGirl on length of posts. (RGirl, where are you lately??)