Could one of the Russian ladies become the best ladies skater EVER next season?

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
In many sports people say that the records are close to the physiological limit. One can't run faster, one can't jump higher, etc. However, new materials for the pole allowed new records for pole vault. A new type of skates increased the speed of speed skaters. Maybe there will also be something new invented for figure skating? Then we could get another era, etc. etc.
i guess i'm not sure what it would be besides an improvement in skates, but they have already come so far in the last 10-15 years with technology advancements and weighing much less than they used to, namely with the boom of Edea about 10 years ago. blades have also come a long way, i know carbon fiber ones are available now.
 

FelineFairy

On the Ice
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Sep 13, 2020
i guess i'm not sure what it would be besides an improvement in skates, but they have already come so far in the last 10-15 years with technology advancements and weighing much less than they used to, namely with the boom of Edea about 10 years ago. blades have also come a long way, i know carbon fiber ones are available now.
I have no idea if it is possible to create some propelling and/or shock dampening properties?
 

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
I have no idea if it is possible to create some propelling and/or shock dampening properties?
skates today have a lot of support for shock absorption, but i have no idea how much room for improvement there is in that area. IMO some sort of propulsion would probably count as cheating lol.
 

yume

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Joined
Mar 11, 2016
i think we will need to see the sport level out technically before we see someone who can even come close to the dominance skaters like Yuna had.
Dominance in terms of seasons with almost straight victories or dominance in terms of if you don't do a mistake you will aways win?

Because if it's the first, a skater like Medvedeva already done it, because Kim really dominated only during two seasons. Actually Medvedeva did better because she didn't lose a competition during a season. And for the 2nd, she couldn't lose, even with a fall. But Kim had that quality during 5-6 years. While for Medvedeva, someone with a better potential scoring came into the picture the 3rd season.

Kostornaya was a good candidate. Trusova with more consistency could have done that. But asking consistency to a girl who attempts 4 quads is a bit insane.
 

Shayuki

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Joined
Nov 2, 2013
i think we will need to see the sport level out technically before we see someone who can even come close to the dominance skaters like Yuna had.
Uh. Yuna wasn't even that dominant...? You think her "dominance" was completely unprecedented or something? Indeed, as Yuna's considered the greatest of all time, one would need to do better than her. Had Medvedeva won the OGM in 2018, one could argue that she already would have been GOAT right there and then, which just goes to show that it's not at all that "distant dream" people are making it out to be.
 

starlight97

Final Flight
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Jun 14, 2014
Personally I would never call a skater the best ever based on one season, no matter how great. Best of that season yes, most technically impressive skater we’ve yet seen sure, but to me “best ever” implies multiple types of achievements over a period of some time, at least one 4-year period but preferably more.
So to you, for example, Medvedeva would be considered a greater skater than Alina or any of the current girls since she was on top of the sport for almost a full 4 year period?
I'll have to accept that view point, although I completely disagree.

I personally cannot consider someone whose hardest element was a 3F-3T greater than girls who have perfected spins, transitions, jump 3Lo-3T, jump 4s and 3A etc, even if they've only been around for 1 season.
To me FS is a sport with an artistic component. The greatest sportsman we have ever had in this sport are the current girls.
I have a personal infatuation with Yuna Kim, but still it's clear as day to me she was nowhere near the level all these Russian girls show today. The top 6 Russian girls nowadays would beat her.
She might not even make the GPF, she would never get to Worlds or Olympics if she was a Russian girl in the next season. Let that sink in.
 

Thrashergurl

On the Ice
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Oct 27, 2019
So you’d say that Kimmie Meissner could be considered GOAT because she landed a 3axel and had one World championship gold?
 

Lzbee

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Sep 25, 2016
I personally do consider Medvedeva the closest to GOAT status out of the Russian prodigies.

If someone can be considered the greatest of all time based on one season then what does that make the explosive senior debutant who beats them next season with even more difficult content?
 

Dawn825

Final Flight
Joined
Jan 19, 2021
My reservation with the current girls isn't the length of their careers. It's that their only claim to fame is jumping quads - but most of their quads are of such poor quality, they hardly even count as quads to me. None of them are doing more than 3.5 rotations. Except Zhilina. When a skater comes up who jumps real quads like she does, but is also somewhat artistic and somewhat consistent, then I'll be impressed.
(I wonder why Zhilina's technique is so different, whether it's natural or if at one point she had a different coach that no one else is using.)
 

Shayuki

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Joined
Nov 2, 2013
I personally do consider Medvedeva the closest to GOAT status out of the Russian prodigies.

If someone can be considered the greatest of all time based on one season then what does that make the explosive senior debutant who beats them next season with even more difficult content?
It's technically possible to be the greatest of all time for a year, until the next skater who's even better becomes the greatest of all time. At the end of this period, there will be a time when no one will soon be better than the last skater, and then we'll have a longer-lasting greatest skater of all time.
 

Skatesocs

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May 16, 2020
I think one interesting fact one could take into account for the current Eteri girls (and a lot of others) is that most of them weren't even born when 6.0 was around. Kamila Valieva was born in 2006 - we'd already transitioned to IJS in the 2004-05 season internationally.

This is important, IMO, because when I watch Yuna or Mao's skating, it's obvious to me that their skating had elements of 6.0 in it. When they first started to skate at an elite level, they would have been trained with that in mind, never mind the transition of judging systems. They were more of a bridge between 6.0 and IJS. The current ladies (and the future ones) will never have known a different judging system to exist, and also never have trained with it in their minds or their coaches' minds.

This, coupled with the tech content, makes it possible for me to think of the current ladies to be an entirely different era of skating. It's full IJS. It's also important because while I don't think they are particularly good at choreography/interpretation/performance in the 6.0 way of the ones who are usually lauded, they certainly deliver the choreography with confidence - and the choreography/interpretation is made with a different purpose in mind. "Post 3A skating" is a different era of skating. I do think up until Zagitova, we can still compare and contrast and say Kim/Asada were definitely better. After that, perhaps not as much - they certainly can't compete with the tech content and would deserve to be beaten with the kind of tech content being laid out.
 

Lzbee

On the Ice
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Sep 25, 2016
It's technically possible to be the greatest of all time for a year, until the next skater who's even better becomes the greatest of all time. At the end of this period, there will be a time when no one will soon be better than the last skater, and then we'll have a longer-lasting greatest skater of all time.
Fair enough. That would mean Medvedeva, Zagitova, Kwan, Kim, Henie, Witt etc. etc. are all former GOATs.
 

Shayuki

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Joined
Nov 2, 2013
Fair enough. That would mean Medvedeva, Zagitova, Kwan, Kim, Henie, Witt etc. etc. are all former GOATs.
Well no, I wouldn't say Zagitova or Medvedeva are GOATs with their current achievements, I don't mean just being the strongest of an era. Witt for example was the GOAT skater at one point, but I wouldn't say that she is anymore. I'd say that Medvedeva got very fortunate to skate in an era that was light in quality competition and hence as the only somewhat decent skater got her scoring boosted through the roof in order to attempt to give the era some legitimacy. Her only serious non-domestic competition was a past-prime Kostner, and Osmond who I've never thought very highly of, and even the domestic competition wasn't that amazing in comparison to legends like Mao Asada and Kim Yuna. The Japanese crop of, what, Suzuki, Miyahara, Sakamoto what have you was alright, but far from skaters like Asada.

However, if we were to ignore the context, Medvedeva was so dominant during that era that she could easily be in historic GOAT discussion had she won the olympic gold, even if I personally think it mostly was artificial and caused in large part due to the lightness of the era.
 

yume

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Joined
Mar 11, 2016
I personally cannot consider someone whose hardest element was a 3F-3T greater than girls who have perfected spins, transitions, jump 3Lo-3T, jump 4s and 3A etc, even if they've only been around for 1 season.
I agree.

Kostornaya for example is miles ahead of Medvedeva and did a more impressive first senior season. She won all her intl comps being more consistent than Medevedeva while skating harder layouts AND competing against girls with quads and 3A. It isn't because she had the bad luck to see worlds cancelled and didn't a chance to win them, that she should be considered lesser than Medvedeva who had way easier layouts and faced much easier competition.
 

Lamente Ariane

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Joined
Apr 5, 2017
So to you, for example, Medvedeva would be considered a greater skater than Alina or any of the current girls since she was on top of the sport for almost a full 4 year period?
I'll have to accept that view point, although I completely disagree.

I personally cannot consider someone whose hardest element was a 3F-3T greater than girls who have perfected spins, transitions, jump 3Lo-3T, jump 4s and 3A etc, even if they've only been around for 1 season.
To me FS is a sport with an artistic component. The greatest sportsman we have ever had in this sport are the current girls.
I have a personal infatuation with Yuna Kim, but still it's clear as day to me she was nowhere near the level all these Russian girls show today. The top 6 Russian girls nowadays would beat her.
She might not even make the GPF, she would never get to Worlds or Olympics if she was a Russian girl in the next season. Let that sink in.
To be clear, I said to be considered greatest EVER I'd rather consider skaters who were dominant for a longer period of time. That doesn't necessarily mean that I think any skater who was dominant for more than a season is a "better" skater than others. And it's difficult to compare skaters from different eras, because you never know what sort of tech they might have developed if they were kids at the present time knowing they needed 3As and quads to win. I certainly think Katarina Witt, for one, would have gone for those elements if she'd needed them in her first senior season!

Medvedeva is an interesting case, for me. Obviously she went undefeated for longer than any of the recent Russian Ladies, but in my personal, subjective opinion, I rarely rooted for her and if anything felt like her rivals often had artistic qualities that were being overlooked and undervalued while she had a (imo, overly inflated) PCS cushion that gave her leeway to make mistakes, they never did. It isn't a case of her having had vastly superior tech, as you mention, it was mainly consistency + reputation. Which, fair enough, she always delivered and the others rarely did, but for me it wasn't as exciting until she was really fighting for first, and then the podium. In that respect, you could say that while it's too early to call the current girls the "greatest ever" I do think some of their competitions can be considered the most EXCITING ever.
 

AshWagsFan

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Oct 14, 2017
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How?

Not even Mao in this list. With 10+ active years of skating and more titles than some ladies you named.
Mao would 100% be in this list! I merely forgot to put her name down.

Slutskaya was attempting two triple triples in her programs. Medvedeva had the most transitions and she had the difficult tano and rippon jump variations in her programs before they were normalized.
 

starlight97

Final Flight
Joined
Jun 14, 2014
Medvedeva is an interesting case, for me. Obviously she went undefeated for longer than any of the recent Russian Ladies, but in my personal, subjective opinion, I rarely rooted for her and if anything felt like her rivals often had artistic qualities that were being overlooked and undervalued while she had a (imo, overly inflated) PCS cushion that gave her leeway to make mistakes, they never did. It isn't a case of her having had vastly superior tech, as you mention, it was mainly consistency + reputation.
I completely share this sentiment. I never cared for her skating, her PCS was based on miming to me, and I was always aware she was only this dominant cause there was not much competition around during those years. But the circumstances fell into place for her, and she was consistent.
And yes, of course nobody can know what Katarina Witt might have done about 4s and 3A if they had been a thing back then. But based on reality, not hypothesis, her tech was a joke compared to what they show today. Back then I personally could understand much better if people were questiong if FS was a sport to be taken seriously. Nowadays, there's no question whatsoever to me.

I will say however, all great tech aside, after Yuna Kim there was no girl who could move like her, create shapes like her, draw me in, until Kostornaya came around. So even if neither of them have 4s, they are who I enjoy most.
I will watch Yuna's Danse Macabre with a 3F-3T over Trusova's 4 x 4s anytime
 

TallyT

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Joined
Apr 23, 2018
Country
Australia
I have a personal infatuation with Yuna Kim, but still it's clear as day to me she was nowhere near the level all these Russian girls show today. The top 6 Russian girls nowadays would beat her.
She might not even make the GPF, she would never get to Worlds or Olympics if she was a Russian girl in the next season. Let that sink in.

Actually, that really depends on a lot of wibbly wobbly timing. Yes, the Yuna Kim as she was in 2014 would not beat the top Russian girls of 2021. But if Yuna was competing now, she would be a different - a 2021 - skater (and IMO wouldn't have as much artistic/interpretive brilliance because like the Russian girls, she would be younger and more callow, but still would be pretty damn good). A 2021 Yuna very well might beat them and in addition may have that special superstar quality that made her unique and loved worldwide. And if Trusova or Valieva was competing in 2014? - they wouldn't have the technical chops they have now, so would quite possibly be behind Lipnitskaya. They surely wouldn't make the splash she did at Sochi.

The thing is, the current group of top scorers will likely be surpassed (barring the system they are using stalling or collapsing), so they need something other than 'very very best scorers of the moment' to make greatest. Of course, the ISU could change the rules again (I doubt they'll announce another set of historics this soon) making it easier for the current cream to stay at the top of the crop... in which case they would have their chance to get that something other.
 
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