2020-21 Japanese Men, Pairs And Ice Dance

lappo

Final Flight
Joined
Feb 12, 2016
Most important question of the day:
is Yuzuru's SP "Let me entertain you" the Queen song or the Robbie Williams one? Either way, I'm pumped! :cheer: :cheer: :cheer:
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2020
Country
Japan
Japan now has the most stacked Worlds team in men, in my opinion. Assuming Worlds do happen, they have three solid medal contenders. Yuzuru has never looked better. He's going to likely set a new personal best there, and possibly a new world record. He got very high scores at nationals with quad toe loops, salchows, and one loop. Assuming he increases his technical difficulty and fixes the few spin mishaps, he's going to have a huge score. Shoma has steadily looked better under Lambiel. He seems more relaxed and happier. His jumps still look a little awkward, but his skating has improved a lot, and with it his scores. He's looking a lot more like the Pyeonchang silver medalist than the 2019 Shoma. He could easily sneak in a medal here. Yuma has improved so much this year, to the point where his scores are almost on par with Shoma's. The three months until Worlds will be huge for increasing his stamina and jumps, but I also think Yuma could sneak in a medal. Depending on Nathan and Vincent's performance, it could possibly be a Japan 1-2-3 at Worlds or even the Olympics. This is one of the deepest teams I've ever seen.
 

Flying Feijoa

On the Ice
Joined
Sep 22, 2019
Country
New-Zealand
Depending on Nathan and Vincent's performance, it could possibly be a Japan 1-2-3 at Worlds or even the Olympics. This is one of the deepest teams I've ever seen.
The other Japanese men (outside top three) are all quite good but in terms of base value and PCS are approximately on par with strong contenders from the US, Russia and sometimes Canada. This has been borne out by international results too. The men's discipline is very inconsistent and someone like Kazuki or Keiji for example has as much chance of e.g. a Grand Prix medal as coming 6th or 7th depending how they do on the day. Think about Jason Brown, Mikhail Kolyada, Jin Boyang, Keegan Messing (solid top 5 or top 10 territory) - or the newer faces like Roman Sadovsky, Deniss Vasiljevs, Tomoki Hiwatashi, Andrei Mozalev (top 10-15 territory if they're feeling good) - and the field starts to look cramped. As we haven't had a proper international competitive season, we're not sure how the new seniors stack up or what sort of competitive shape everyone's in (seen more of Russia/Japan, but the North Americans and Chinese have been relatively quiet).

Remember Deniss Vasiljevs landed his first quad ever at Nebelhorn 2020. Imagine if Jason's spent this weird season consolidating a quad too - I can't imagine him placing below Yuma!

I do agree that the Japanese mens' field has great potential, just that it hasn't yet been realised. Within the younger generation, Yuma is more polished but his facial expression needs work, Shun is coming off an injury and Kao is often very uncontrolled. However, in general boys 15-18 years old can rise very quickly (unlike girls who tend to go the opposite way) - promising men often seem to appear 'out of nowhere' but it's usually because they've undergone some growth issues or technique adjustments and been under the radar (e.g. Nathan Chen in 2016). Because of this, I have hope for Shun and Kao to rise like Yuma did last year. Although by the same principle, Stephen Gogolev or Andrew Torgashev might also surprise us next season.

Nathan is not in the same category as Vincent... He would have to bomb very badly (Pyeongchang-style) to be beaten by Yuma and I can't imagine that happening outside of injury or sickness. It'll hopefully be a Yuzu-Nathan-Shoma-Jason-Misha fight in Beijing with Yuzu and Nathan as the frontrunners.
 

TallyT

Here for the High Lord of Extra
Record Breaker
Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Country
Australia
I agree we need to tale things more slowly, as most of their rivals - except the Russians - have only had one or no competition outings this year, which means we have little idea how anyone will stack up when it comes to the biggest event - think about it, Kolyada and Yuma may be the only top men who can be said to have had a - barely - decent number, and I wouldn't call theirs an even half-way satisfactory runup.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2020
Country
Japan
It's obviously almost impossible for there to be a Japan 1-2-3, but I think my original point was to emphasize how Japan had the best team, rivaled only by the United States. And, more importantly, their team is mainly young and healthy. I could see Yuma beating Jason, as their scores were close at 4 Continents and Jason did very well there. Obviously, if Jason has improved his technical content, he will place in the top five if he skates clean. And Vincent has had some high scores, he's just incredibly inconsistent. To clarify, I think Japan is sending three men who could possibly medal, and three men who could very likely place in the top 6.
 

rabidline

Final Flight
Joined
Aug 16, 2018
Would anyone be willing to translate the start orders for the Junior Mens Free and Senior Mens Short at the Winter Sports Festival?


Thank you!

Senior Men:
1. Kouki Kanbe (Saitama)
2. Reo Ishizuka (Tokyo)
3. Shinichi Yamada (Hyogo)
4. Kazuki Tomono (Osaka)
5. Kento Kobayashi (Saitama)
6. Takaya Tsujimura (Shiga)
7. Yuto Kishina (Okayama)
8. Yuji Maekawa (Kyoto)
9. Taichiro Yamakuma (Hyogo)
10. Hino Ryuju (Aichi)
11. Kosuke Nakano (Fukuoka)
12. Takeyuki Kagaya (Ishikawa)
13. Sumitada Moriguchi (Kyoto)
14. Yuki Kunikata (Tokyo)
15. Taichi Honda (Osaka)
16. Ryoma Kobayashi (Kanagawa)
17. Koshin Yamada (Fukuoka)
18. Kinari Sugahara (Niigata)
19. Keiji Tanaka (Okayama)
20. Tsunehito Karakawa (Kanagawa)
21. Seiya Tsuboi (Hokkaido)
22. Kazuki Hasegawa (Hokkaido)
23. Junsuke Tokikuni (Shiga)
24. Masaki Taiki (Niigata) --> not really sure about this one
25. Yasue Tomohiro (Ishikawa) --> also not really sure about this one
26. Sota Yamamoto (Aichi)
 

denise3lz

On the Ice
Joined
Apr 10, 2018
Country
Japan
Junior Men Free Skating order
1.Souta Iwano (Hokkaido)
2.Hyuga Nakamori (Hokkaido)
3.Shunya Matsuoka (Fukuoka)
4.Haruki Honda (Aichi)
5.Kairi Kato (Iwate)
6.Haruki Mishima (Hiroshima)

7.Shun Kobayashi (Shiga)
8.Masamune Okubo (Nagano)
9.Tarumi Sora (Fukuoka)
10.Rei Suzuki (Hiroshima)
11.Sakura Odagaki (Tokyo)
12.Masaya Morita (Kyoto)

13.Shuntaro Asaga (Osaka)
14.Shunsuke Nakamura (Kyoto)
15.Kosho Oshima (Saitama)
16.Nozomu Yoshioka (Hyogo)
17.Takumi Sugiyama (Okayama)
18.Keisuke Kodowaki (Okayama)

19.Haruya Sasaki (Aichi)
20.Kao Miura (Tokyo)
21.Takeru Kataise (Hyogo)
22.Lucas Tsuyoshi Honda (Shiga)
23.Shun Sato (Saitama)
24.Yuma Kagiyama (Kanagawa)
 
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surimi

Happy 21st, Sota!
Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2013
I am really hoping for the senior men to go through some sort of mental therapy together, because they're handing it to the juniors on a silver platter, if National Athletic Meet and Nationals is anything to go by. Juniors tend to be more carefree generally, but the senior crop really need to build some confidence to stand up to the young ones and their quads. They all have the goods, but not the nerves of steel they need. So far only Keiji is posing a threat to junior men. Kazuki is a partial hot mess, Sota is unfortunately a big mess at the moment. I'm sad to watch that as I have a soft spot for them. I can't wait for them to get their jumps together again. IDK about Koshiro now, one competition is too little to tell. I'm not a fan of his current skating, but he seems to have improved his mental resilience so the jumps might come.
 
Joined
Dec 8, 2020
Country
Japan
I am really hoping for the senior men to go through some sort of mental therapy together, because they're handing it to the juniors on a silver platter, if National Athletic Meet and Nationals is anything to go by. Juniors tend to be more carefree generally, but the senior crop really need to build some confidence to stand up to the young ones and their quads. They all have the goods, but not the nerves of steel they need. So far only Keiji is posing a threat to junior men. Kazuki is a partial hot mess, Sota is unfortunately a big mess at the moment. I'm sad to watch that as I have a soft spot for them. I can't wait for them to get their jumps together again. IDK about Koshiro now, one competition is too little to tell. I'm not a fan of his current skating, but he seems to have improved his mental resilience so the jumps might come.
Kazuki needs to stop popping jumps, but he has one of my favorite free programs. He has loads of potential, but mental therapy sounds like a really good idea. Keiji had a rough NHK Trophy, but I agree he's improved a lot recently. I think Yuma will continue to hand it to the seniors, simply because he's so talented, but I think Kazuki and Keiji absolutely have the potential to beat the other juniors. They just need some confidence.
 

KiraraChin

Medalist
Joined
May 5, 2018
I agree with you guys, but ultimately this is the fed's fault.

Yuma is definitely very skilled and I can see why the fed is betting on him, but let's face it, part of the reason he's been able to perform so well is because he has strong fed support. He said himself before, that he was very relieved when he realised he can make a big mistake (such as missing a jump in the SP), and still score well. No doubt this is a massive boost to his confidence and helps him to keep calm during his performances.

On the other extreme you have a skater like Kazuki, who has improved SO MUCH but the fed simply refuses to acknowledge it. Kazuki can land gorgeous and difficult jumps and still they do not receive their far share of GOE. He can pour his heart onto his performance and display dramatically improved skating skills, and yet this is not reflected on his PCS. He gets undermined and lowballed again and again, even when he's clean (4CC '20 SP) or semi-clean (NHK '20 SP). Honestly, I think anyone would mentally struggle in these circumstances.

Among the top Japanese men who competed throughout the season (i.e. not Shoma and Yuzu), only Yuma did well, everyone else struggled physically and/or mentally. I really don't think this is a coincidence. I really wish JSF learned how to support their fave(s) without lowballing everyone else. Sigh.
 
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