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Thread: Tuktamysheva: The Views of Frank Carroll

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    Bona Fide Member Mao88's Avatar
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    Tuktamysheva: The Views of Frank Carroll

    Just read the following article in the Globe and Mail in which Frank Carroll provides his opinion on Elizaveta Tuktamysheva: Globe & Mail

    The following extract is the section of the article in which Carroll sets out his views on Tuktamysheva:-

    "While few would disagree that it’s exciting to watch a precocious youngster, not everybody was convinced that she is a senior skater, style-wise. Some said she still looked like a junior skater. In this competition, we have a little girl who has very tiny legs and she can rotate like a bat out of hell,” said Frank Carroll, coach of Mirai Nagasu, who finished fifth. “She’s doing triple-triples like nothing while these other girls are more mature and struggling with it.” But Carroll, known as the coach of Michelle Kwan, watched Tuktamisheva practice on Saturday and found her routine to latin music very junior-level, with ‘no maturity, looking like she should be in a novice or junior program, executing these wonderful jumps, but lacking what the other girls have to offer,” he said. He said if the judges scored her correctly, they would give her high technical marks, but should be scored at six or seven for the presentation marks. Many judges gave her marks far higher than that, with some as high as 7.75.One gave her a 8.25 for performance and didn’t give her a mark lower than seven (out of 10). Tuktamisheva will have to learn to skate much more like a woman, with maturity, he said. “The movement is so immature right now,” Carroll said. He’d like to use the word “childish” but feels it’s too harsh."

    This is way over the top. Tuktamysheva performed brilliantly and was well deserving of her victory. At the end of the day, she is only 14 and whilst she does not have the maturity of some of the senior skaters, the maturity she did display was well beyond her years. The criticisms re lack of maturity are always levelled at those just entering the senior ranks, but ultimately they have to start somewhere! As the old cliche goes, before a diamond becomes a fabulous jewel, it has to be refined, polished, and perfected. Tuktamysheva is undertaking the very same journey that Carroll undertook with Michelle Kwan, and like Kwan was at 14, Tuktamysheva is by no means the finished article. I think its time therefore that people stopped criticising Tuktamysheva for having the same issues that all skaters have when they first enter the senior ranks. Nobody can expect her to be the finished article at the age of just 14. She still has several years of development before her, but she is off to a brilliant start. Her coaches have obviously focused on the technical side to provide her with a good foundation. The maturity, as with all skaters and all aspects of life, will obviously come with age. To suggest that she should already have it and to criticise her for allegedly not having it at the age of just 14 is completely ludicrous. As stated, whilst she does not have the maturity of some senior skaters, I think she displayed maturity well beyond her years, and for that she should be applauded. It also shows that she has huge potential.

    Apparently, Tuktamysheva comes from a family of very very small people. Hence, for those that think that she may be derailed by a growth spurt, it may well be the case that there is not a great deal of growing left for her to do. I strongly suspect therefore that she will have little difficulty in retaining her jumping ability. And given that she already has a very sound technical basis from which to build, she can therefore spend much more time over the next couple of years adding the artistry, presentation skills, musicality, choreography, etc. And under the current system, that is the correct way to go about things - establish a solid technical base at a young age and then add the artistry gradually thereafter. As I said, therefore, to criticise a 14 year old skater of lacking skating maturity when nobody in their right mind would expect them to have fully developed it at that age is just beyond ridiculous. Nevertheless, to reiterate, in my view Tuktamysheva's level of skating maturity is already well beyond her years.
    Last edited by Mao88; 10-31-2011 at 01:57 AM.

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    Bona Fide Member Buttercup's Avatar
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    That's rich, Frank Carroll complaining about people being overscored on PCS. Maybe, instead of opining about the promising Liza Tuktamysheva, he should concern himself with teaching his own skaters proper jump technique, getting them into good competitive shape, helping them choose the right music and programs so that they are engaged with the choreography and the performance, and supporting them when they do badly rather than sitting in the K&C looking glum and censorious. He had a skater in this field who looked out of shape and disinterested in what she was doing on the ice. Either she needs a new coach, or he needs to rethink his approach to training her.

    Not to mention, Mirai could use some of Liza's Mishin jump training. So, for that matter, could have Evan Lysacek.

    Yes, Tuktamysheva is young and needs more polish, as do many skaters when they first break into the senior ranks. But she delivered at Skate Canada when others faltered, she seemed to enjoy performing, and she deserved the medal she won. Good for her and I hope to see her progress both technically and artistically as she matures.

    I would suggest that if Mr. Carroll has nothing nice to say about a skater he is not coaching, he should be saying nothing at all.

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    What is this a Mishin Carroll feud? Calling Liza novice and junior was like characterising PLushenko's spins like "Well he's (Plushenko) doing spins Evan did as an intermediate"

    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/c...k-olympic.html

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    Bona Fide Member seniorita's Avatar
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    I knew I shouldn't have opened the thread and ruin my Monday morning. What is his problem? He didnt say a single good thing. How can you talk about her size, is it something to comment about like she is responsible for being tiny?? Even Tarasova has praised Mishin students the last 3-4 years, with all their rivalry.
    Of course her programs looked more juniorish. He should complain to ISU for letting athletes at the age of 14 competing in Seniors otherwise if Elisaveta or any 14 year skated with maturity it would be like the beauty contests of children that they put all the makeup and high heels, go posing and compete for Miss Junior Universe or something, which I find freakish. Tuktamisheva had to make a good debut at this age, she has lots of year to search and experiment her style, btw I saw the Lambiel hand in her sp and I m happy! And he clearly hadnt seen the cute Mao competing in GPF 2005.
    Wasn't Mirai skating in Vancouver with the freshness and abandon of being 16 in your first Olympics? She didnt skate Carmen like Katarina Witt, I remember Mathman commenting that she is like Carmen's little sister which I found a great compliment back then.
    I hope Mishin is laughing somewhere reading this, he has invested a great amount of years so far to Elisaveta.

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    Liza was really marvelous. Very elegant too. Maybe her ice coverage could exand, but that's good, it means she can be even more marvelous.

    It seems as if Caroll is saying things to avoid interviews from reaching to a topic he need to avoid, which is his coaching.

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    Bona Fide Member Buttercup's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gmyers View Post
    What is this a Mishin Carroll feud? Calling Liza novice and junior was like characterising PLushenko's spins like "Well he's (Plushenko) doing spins Evan did as an intermediate"

    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/c...k-olympic.html
    Oh I missed that in real time. How amusing! I had no idea Evan was doing the equivalent of level 4 spins at such a young age.

    Carroll says women’s skating is hampered by the new judging system, which requires them to build up points with countless elements, giving them no time to explore the artistic side of skating, “the long sweeping graceful moves,”

    .The programs are crammed with content, and the spins are convoluted, he said.

    “The sport has become much more complicated, maybe too complicated for the women,” Carroll said.
    1. I'd argue the first part is more true for the men, and Carroll did not hesitate to take advantage of this in his work with Lysacek.

    2. Maybe too complicated for the women? Oh, really? Would that be 23 year old World Champion Miki Ando? Her fellow medalist, 24 year old Carolina Kostner? Perhaps the American national champion, the now 24 year old Alissa Czisny? Or the silver medalist at SC, 26 year old Akiko Suzuki? Sarah Meier, European Champion at age 26? Or perhaps Joannie Rochette, a better skater in her twenties than she ever was as a teen? They don't seem to find skating too complicated for them to succeed. They're not lacking in grace and maturity. Maybe Frank needs to watch more ladies' skating; he'll see that if anything, the skaters are staying in competition until a later age and that there are wonderful, mature, elegant skaters in the top ranks.

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    Buttercup is very wise and I agree with every word you wrote! Frank Carroll is reknowned for showing a lack of sportsmanship and for trash talking the competition and judges' scores when his skaters don't win.
    Last edited by museksk8r; 10-31-2011 at 08:02 AM.

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    Very Interesting that he says she should be scored at sixes or seven in PCS (he says presentation scores.) Well, she also received a 4.75 and a 5.50 and 5.75 for what it's worth and the only total that's 7.00 or higher is P/E at exactly 7.00. The rest of the totals are in the sixes, so in the end she was exactly scored how he thought she should have been.

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    Arghhh I want to know what he thinks of Mirai, not Liza!

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    Bona Fide Member seniorita's Avatar
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    I was watching 2004JGPF of Yuna and Mao and their body type all arms and legs looks more juniorish than Elisaveta's right now. And they both didnt have such big probelms growing up.

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    I am having doubt on Coach Carroll's professionism. He has been politiking against rivals of his students too much, and politiking for his own students too obvious. Is he trying to affect judges so they will mark down Liza in favor of his students? Shouldn't a coach focus on teaching his students?

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    Tripping on the Podium Kitt's Avatar
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    Grumpy old man! Stop trash-talking the competition and concentrate on your own failures.

    Whatever psychology he's using on Mirai isn't working; maybe he should take lessons from Mr. Nicks on how to handle his skaters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by seniorita View Post
    I was watching 2004JGPF of Yuna and Mao and their body type all arms and legs looks more juniorish than Elisaveta's right now. And they both didnt have such big probelms growing up.
    I am not aginst your argument, but YuNa and Mao was just past their 14th birthdays when 2004 JGPF whereas Tuk is just one month to her 15th birthday. You have to compare with YuNa and Mao in 2005 JGP and GP.
    Last edited by cosmos; 10-31-2011 at 09:28 AM.

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    Well, I guess I have to come to Frank's defense a little bit here since I've known him for 30 years. Someone at G&B asked him his opinion - he doesn't just come out to comment on another skater. He is also at an age that he doesn't care what you might think of his opinion. In his career he has seen hundreds of baby ballerinas - so he does know what he is talking about. I've seen dozens myself and as for Tuk - who knows what will happen when she hits puberty. As for Mirai now that Frank has moved to Cathedral City, it is quite a long drive especially in traffic from LA where Mirai lives and she only goes to Frank a few times a week. She admits to having poor training habits if Frank or Evan is not there to push her. You can't blame Frank for all her problems.

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    Bona Fide Member seniorita's Avatar
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    You are right I didnt think of it. I believe Mao went to TEB next season, not junior gp. Where she looks small as well btw, but this is my fav comp of her. ANyway I didnt want to make a case for anything, each person grows up differently, I was just looking to check how these girls were at that age.

    Quote Originally Posted by KKonas View Post
    he doesn't just come out to comment on another skater. He is also at an age that he doesn't care what you might think of his opinion. In his career he has seen hundreds of baby ballerinas - so he does know what he is talking about. I've seen dozens myself and as for Tuk - who knows what will happen when she hits puberty.
    Yes but this is like reinventing the wheel. As to what will happen with Tukt, nobody knows, she can be lost in the pack or not as what happened to Mao and Yuna that their age didnt prevent them for getiing into seniors with a bang, and that can be said for ALL juniors going to seniors, I believe maybe there should be a sign above Junior Championships " Who knows what will happen to you when you hit puberty." Or let them compete after 17 years old. Both Elisaveta and Adelina have grown a lot since 2009-10 and 2010-11 season, especially Adelina.
    He could have said many things, like nice competition, congradulations etc, but it is true that he doesnt need to care about what people think of his opinion.
    Last edited by seniorita; 10-31-2011 at 09:56 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KKonas View Post
    As for Mirai now that Frank has moved to Cathedral City, it is quite a long drive especially in traffic from LA where Mirai lives and she only goes to Frank a few times a week. She admits to having poor training habits if Frank or Evan is not there to push her. You can't blame Frank for all her problems.
    I completely agree, and anyone looking at this from a rational point of view knows this as well. It is only the Mirai ubers who are unfairly finger pointing all the blame toward Frank Carroll and Lori Nichol.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KKonas View Post
    Well, I guess I have to come to Frank's defense a little bit here since I've known him for 30 years. Someone at G&B asked him his opinion - he doesn't just come out to comment on another skater. He is also at an age that he doesn't care what you might think of his opinion. In his career he has seen hundreds of baby ballerinas - so he does know what he is talking about. I've seen dozens myself and as for Tuk - who knows what will happen when she hits puberty. As for Mirai now that Frank has moved to Cathedral City, it is quite a long drive especially in traffic from LA where Mirai lives and she only goes to Frank a few times a week. She admits to having poor training habits if Frank or Evan is not there to push her. You can't blame Frank for all her problems.
    But the fact that Frank has seen dozens is why his comments about Elizaveta being little and thats why she can jump IS unfair. The reason so many people are high on Tuktimsheva and her future in this sport is because Elizaveta is not an example of a little girl who because she is super tiny is muscling up poorly done triple jumps. This is not a Caroline Zhang case. People are high on Elizaveta because she is a young girl with extremely solid basic skating skills, and near perfect jumping technique. Those jumps are high quality. And baring a puberty disaster that technique is going to serve Tukt extremely well in the future. If anything so far her jumps have gotten better with age, and others have pointed out that as she develops more power in her skating, they may get even bigger.

    The girl by many who have seen her also has a very good sense of music too and tries to perform. And obviously this kid has learned how to compete.

    People can criticize Mishin and his packaging of students (the way he packaged Plushenko is a crime) But Mishin does a lot of things very right with his young students. And Tukt is an extremely strong example of this. Something tells me Frank wishes that Mirai had a similarly strong technical basis, and would probably happily at this point exchange students. Because as long as puberty isn't too unkind, she's someone who would be very easy to develop further. And unlike Nagasu, so far Tukt skates like she wants it.
    Last edited by bekalc; 10-31-2011 at 10:24 AM.

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    I don't mind if Frank showed us his true nature. Bitterness? Well...

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    [QUOTE=bekalc;588205]But the fact that Frank has seen dozens is why his comments about Elizaveta being little and thats why she can jump IS unfair. The reason so many people are high on Tuktimsheva and her future in this sport is because Elizaveta is not an example of a little girl who because she is super tiny is muscling up poorly done triple jumps. This is not a Caroline Zhang case. People are high on Elizaveta because she is a young girl with extremely solid basic skating skills, and near perfect jumping technique. Those jumps are high quality. And baring a puberty disaster that technique is going to serve Tukt extremely well in the future. If anything so far her jumps have gotten better with age, and others have pointed out that as she develops more power in her skating, they may get even bigger.
    QUOTE]

    This may be the real reason that Coach Carroll attacked Liza's PCS. He has almost nothing to pick about her technique. So he would try to prevent her from getting right PCS, which is still subjective and "controllable".

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    I have great respect for Frank as a coach because I'm a Michelle fan, but I wish he had not weighed in on this matter. In addition to the fact that his response takes an unchivalrous dig at a rival's student, it also reflects a view of ladies' skating that I'm uncomfortable with—that female skaters with the bodies of children are the only ones who can succeed. (He's actually said something like that that before, in fact.) Of course puberty has an affect on many skaters, but there are ways around it, and a smart coach with a talented student can figure things out. As Carroll has done in the course of his stellar career. The whole things leaves a sour taste for me. For one thing, a powerful and influential adult criticizing a child is not a scenario I like to envision.

    I understand that people tend to get intense when they devote their lives to something. (Just look at how intense we fans get sometimes, and we don't earn our livings in this profession!) But the fact is that your skater is always going to have competition, and that those other skaters are going to do their level best to beat your skater. Isn't that kind of the point? If it isn't Elizaveta, it's going to be someone else. That's what makes it (so to speak) a horse race.

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