K. Chen and B. Tennell selected for Worlds

Harriet

Record Breaker
Joined
Oct 23, 2017
Country
Australia
I think that given Amber's injury, selecting Karen and giving Amber plenty of time for recovery and rehab - in the unlikely event that Worlds goes ahead anyway - was the responsible and appropriate choice.
 

BlissfulSynergy

Final Flight
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Mars
What time are the other announcements? They said they will announce Sunday evening for pairs, ice dance, and men. I think the interesting thing will be to see who they go with for the second pairs selection for Worlds.
 

*~RussianBleux~*

Final Flight
Joined
Oct 23, 2005
What time are the other announcements? They said they will announce Sunday evening for pairs, ice dance, and men. I think the interesting thing will be to see who they go with for the second pairs selection for Worlds.

i think it can only be C/J. Their pair elements (everything except the jumps) are on par with the very top pairs in the world and that is...something. Like I would honestly put those elements above K/F at this point. I certainly can’t say the same for CG/L.

Considering that the jumping elements are the most common mistakes in the pairs event (even the Russian pairs sometimes struggle with them and the Chinese pairs definitely do) C/J aren’t necessarily that far off being considered a top team. And if other teams happen to make a mistake or two on those elements C/J could be right in there on a good day for them. Whereas CG/L aren’t getting enough GOE on the lifts throws etc to overcome the top teams unless they really fall apart.
 

MiraiFan

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 6, 2016
This seems like a bogus choice. I agree with others: Karen hasn't improved significantly since last quad. Her international results have been middling since then, and her UR issues may limit her technical score. Amber placed ahead of Karen at Nationals, has been trying to add the 3A, and has generally made great strides. Her improvement/potential should've been rewarded with a Worlds spot, especially the year before Beijing.

The US seems very unlikely to get 3 spots back regardless of who they send. Shcherbakova, 2 of Kostornaia/Trusova/Tuktamysheva, Kihira, and Sakamoto probably all place ahead of Tennell, even if she's perfect. Miyahara may, too.
I agree with this. Karen has had years to get a consistent 3-3 and has not. She's not improved at all. Amber clearly is gaining momentum and watching her I felt no doubt she was going to nail the jumps. No hesitation, calm and collected. Lovely programs. I get the selection rationale but it stings after that brilliant performance.
 

BlissfulSynergy

Final Flight
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Mars
I love both teams. I'm just curious to see what U.S. fed will decide. It was a big brouhaha discussion last year when C-G/L were chosen. But then the Knierims split their on-ice partnership and both C-G/L and C/J were set to go to Worlds, and very unfortunately for both teams Worlds was cancelled.

I would have liked to be a fly on the wall in the committee room this morning when the discussion happened and selections were made. :)

Regarding Karen over Amber, I would have gone with Amber, though I think Karen is such a lovely skater and she's worked her way back from challenges admirably.
 

Makemi

Rinkside
Joined
Nov 4, 2019
What time are the other announcements? They said they will announce Sunday evening for pairs, ice dance, and men. I think the interesting thing will be to see who they go with for the second pairs selection for Worlds.

The other assignments have been announced:
https://usfigureskatingfanzone.com/...-and-ice-dance-selections-for-world-team.aspx

MEN
Jason Brown
Nathan Chen
Vincent Zhou*

Alternate 1 – Tomoki Hiwatashi
Alternate 2 – Maxim Naumov*
Alternate 3 – Camden Pulkinen

PAIRS
Jessica Calalang and Brian Johnson
Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier*

Alternate 1 – Ashley Cain-Gribble and Timothy LeDuc
Alternate 2 – Audrey Lu and Misha Mitrofanov
Alternate 3 – Emily Chan and Spencer Howe*

ICE DANCE
Madison Chock and Evan Bates
Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker
Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue

Alternate 1 – Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko
Alternate 2 – Caroline Green and Michael Parsons
Alternate 3 – Molly Cesanek and Yehor Yehorov*

*pending ISU decision on minimum score

RE: Karen being selected over Amber.... I was rooting for Amber to go but I understand why they went with Karen. Karen is a known quantity and has experience being at Worlds, Amber is on the upswing but still iffy on how well she'd perform under pressure. Had she landed the 3A though I think things would have been different. Anyway I think getting the three spots for the Olympics is possible but probably unlikely (although Karen was responsible for doing so for 2018 so maybe USFS is banking on that).
 

BlissfulSynergy

Final Flight
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Mars
The other assignments have been announced:
https://usfigureskatingfanzone.com/...-and-ice-dance-selections-for-world-team.aspx

MEN
Jason Brown
Nathan Chen
Vincent Zhou*

Alternate 1 – Tomoki Hiwatashi
Alternate 2 – Maxim Naumov*
Alternate 3 – Camden Pulkinen

PAIRS
Jessica Calalang and Brian Johnson
Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier*

Alternate 1 – Ashley Cain-Gribble and Timothy LeDuc
Alternate 2 – Audrey Lu and Misha Mitrofanov
Alternate 3 – Emily Chan and Spencer Howe*

ICE DANCE
Madison Chock and Evan Bates
Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker
Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue

Alternate 1 – Christina Carreira and Anthony Ponomarenko
Alternate 2 – Caroline Green and Michael Parsons
Alternate 3 – Molly Cesanek and Yehor Yehorov*

*pending ISU decision on minimum score

RE: Karen being selected over Amber.... I was rooting for Amber to go but I understand why they went with Karen. Karen is a known quantity and has experience being at Worlds, Amber is on the upswing but still iffy on how well she'd perform under pressure. Had she landed the 3A though I think things would have been different. Anyway I think getting the three spots for the Olympics is possible but probably unlikely (although Karen was responsible for doing so for 2018 so maybe USFS is banking on that).
Yeah thanks. I just saw that on the website and I was coming here to see whether another thread had been started.

The rest of the selections and alternates are straightforward and fairly expected. The asterisks are interesting (re pending minimum ISU score decision). I suppose that's because Naumov came up from juniors; Zhou didn't compete a full 2019-20 season and didn't get to go to Worlds when it was cancelled last year; and K/F are a new team this season in which there haven't been normal competitions.
 

BlissfulSynergy

Final Flight
Joined
Sep 1, 2020
Country
Mars
Amber is on the upswing but still iffy on how well she'd perform under pressure.
LOL. Karen also is sometimes 'iffy' performing under pressure. From what I can see, it appears that both Karen and Amber have been going through a journey of dealing with their nerves and outside distractions and competitive shortcomings. So I give them both credit for looking much better in general under competition pressure.

Sometimes, it's okay to take the risk (if it's seen as risky) to give skaters a chance to prove themselves further. Amber is not an unknown quantity to international judges. Plus Amber does not tend to have trouble with URs, whereas Karen has that rep, whether fans think it's deserved or not. Which means there's the chance that international judges may over-scrutinize Karen's landings, and they don't always fairly judge on UR calls.

Amber also has the 3-axel weapon which it would be nice if they gave her a chance to prove on the world stage. Perhaps they want Amber to prove it during a regular season with senior B and senior GP assignments, which is fine.

On the basis of the criteria, Karen is a former U.S. champion who placed 4th at Worlds previously, and they sent her to the Olympics, where she struggled. Both ladies have assets and drawbacks, but I guess they feel Karen has the BOW clout. It could go great or not-so-great for either of these ladies at Worlds. The international ladies division is deep, deep, deep and tough for U.S. ladies to place high with the politics and the overemphasis on quads and 3-axels. But again, Amber has a 3-axel. Perhaps if she'd landed it cleanly in the sp and skated completely cleanly in the fp, that might have made some difference, or not.

It boils down to giving a skater a vote of confidence for the right reason when they've earned their placement. There is a question of providing incentive and motivation. The sport simply doesn't offer sufficient competitive opportunities for its athletes.
 

Makemi

Rinkside
Joined
Nov 4, 2019
LOL. Karen also is sometimes 'iffy' performing under pressure. From what I can see, it appears that both Karen and Amber have been going through a journey of dealing with their nerves and outside distractions and competitive shortcomings. So I give them both credit for looking much better in general under competition pressure.

Sometimes, it's okay to take the risk (if it's seen as risky) to give skaters a chance to prove themselves further. Amber is not an unknown quantity to international judges. Plus Amber does not tend to have trouble with URs, whereas Karen has that rep, whether fans think it's deserved or not. Which means there's the chance that international judges may over-scrutinize Karen's landings, and they don't always fairly judge on UR calls.

Amber also has the 3-axel weapon which it would be nice if they gave her a chance to prove on the world stage. Perhaps they want Amber to prove it during a regular season with senior B and senior GP assignments, which is fine.

On the basis of the criteria, Karen is a former U.S. champion who placed 4th at Worlds previously, and they sent her to the Olympics, where she struggled. Both ladies have assets and drawbacks, but I guess they feel Karen has the BOW clout. It could go great or not-so-great for either of these ladies at Worlds. The international ladies division is deep, deep, deep and tough for U.S. ladies to place high with the politics and the overemphasis on quads and 3-axels. But again, Amber has a 3-axel. Perhaps if she'd landed it cleanly in the sp and skated completely cleanly in the fp, that might have made some difference, or not.

It boils down to giving a skater a vote of confidence for the right reason when they've earned their placement. There is a question of providing incentive and motivation. The sport simply doesn't offer sufficient competitive opportunities for its athletes.

I don't disagree with you, it's for those reasons I wanted them to send Amber. I think they would have.... had it not been the Worlds that determines spots for the Olympics. That alone complicates everything. In all honesty both are pretty close, but I think it's for that reason that USFS went with what they think is the "safer" of the two. Amber's been fairly consistent recently in putting together good SPs but she has a history of falling apart in the FS (this might have been the first time she was 100% clean). True Karen has a UR problem... but she doesn't typically have meltdowns. I think in the other thread someone had posted their recent head-to-head scores:

Karen / Amber
2021 US Champs 214.98 (3) / 215.33 (2)
2020 Skate America 204.90 (4) / 190.09 (5)
2020 Four Continents 201.06 (7) / 190.83 (9)
2020 US Champs 193.65 (4) / 186.57 (5)

At the last 4CC:

SP
Karen TSS 67.28 (TES 35.55 PCS 31.73) - one carrot
Amber TSS 65.39 (TES 33.92 PCS 31.47) - popped 1A

FS
Karen TSS 133.78 (TES 67.69 PCS 66.09) - three carrots and an edge call
Amber TSS 125.44 (TES 63.03 PCS 63.41) - popped 1A, fall on 2A, (from protocols looks like there was one other major jump error but I can't remember what it was)

So yes close, it really could have gone either way, I don't begrudge USFS their decision. And yes Amber "has" a 3A. Wakaba has a 3A too which she's been trying to land but hasn't been able to yet (not from lack of trying!) because it's hard. As I said, had Amber actually landed it at Nationals that might have made this story different. This might be moot anyway since my gut feel is Worlds won't happen, but if it does we'll see if USFS made the right decision or not.

ETA: What really complicated things was Mariah not making the podium. I guarantee USFS was banking on sending Bradie and Mariah to Worlds. Mariah would have been a safe bet given her success in the previous season, she had even outscored Satoko, so getting three spots back could have happened. But with Mariah bombing and finishing off-podium that was not possible.
 
Last edited:

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
I don't disagree with you, it's for those reasons I wanted them to send Amber. I think they would have.... had it not been the Worlds that determines spots for the Olympics. That alone complicates everything. In all honesty both are pretty close, but I think it's for that reason that USFS went with what they think is the "safer" of the two. Amber's been fairly consistent recently in putting together good SPs but she has a history of falling apart in the FS (this might have been the first time she was 100% clean). True Karen has a UR problem... but she doesn't typically have meltdowns. I think in the other thread someone had posted their recent head-to-head scores:

Karen / Amber
2021 US Champs 214.98 (3) / 215.33 (2)
2020 Skate America 204.90 (4) / 190.09 (5)
2020 Four Continents 201.06 (7) / 190.83 (9)
2020 US Champs 193.65 (4) / 186.57 (5)

At the last 4CC:

SP
Karen TSS 67.28 (TES 35.55 PCS 31.73) - one carrot
Amber TSS 65.39 (TES 33.92 PCS 31.47) - popped 1A

FS
Karen TSS 133.78 (TES 67.69 PCS 66.09) - three carrots and an edge call
Amber TSS 125.44 (TES 63.03 PCS 63.41) - popped 1A, fall on 2A, (from protocols looks like there was one other major jump error but I can't remember what it was)

So yes close, it really could have gone either way, I don't begrudge USFS their decision. And yes Amber "has" a 3A. Wakaba has a 3A too which she's been trying to land but hasn't been able to yet (not from lack of trying!) because it's hard. As I said, had Amber actually landed it at Nationals that might have made this story different. This might be moot anyway since my gut feel is Worlds won't happen, but if it does we'll see if USFS made the right decision or not.

ETA: What really complicated things was Mariah not making the podium. I guarantee USFS was banking on sending Bradie and Mariah to Worlds. Mariah would have been a safe bet given her success in the previous season, she had even outscored Satoko, so getting three spots back could have happened. But with Mariah bombing and finishing off-podium that was not possible.
completely agree. if this was not the year that determined olympic spots, i think they would have given much more consideration to Amber.

Karen has a better international track record and a better body of work argument than Amber has, even though it's not a hugely amount better. she is a former US champion, has made world teams and is an olympian in addition to your scoring breakdowns above.

this was more of a matter of who is more reliable of the two under pressure and who has more potential to score higher, place higher and not implode. Karen absolutely is not consistent, but Amber is not any better, and it's a high stakes worlds this year.
 

Penny

On the Ice
Joined
Oct 12, 2005
Well yeah, there have always been rumors that the relative clout of different coaches figure into these decisions, and I can't help but wonder if there is anything to that. I also think it is unfair. I actually wouldn't have been surprised to see Mariah named, as she seems to do well with International judges. Amber is the only one of the three that actually rotates her jumps, something the international judges seem to be really cracking down on. (UR's). As lovely as Karen's skating is, there is no difference in her technical arsenal now as in the past four years, and I don't see the results being any different. I would ask the USFSA to practice transparency, and release their decision making process. They owe that to Amber and for that matter-Mariah.
I am so sad for Amber. The committee is saying that hard work, including the tremendous challenge of learning the 3A, isn't enough. I love Chen's skating but she consistently under-rotates. I love Mariah, too, but she often has meltdowns. The media love Mariah because she is cute and feminine, but Amber has the goods (fully rotated jumps, artistry, and a potential 3A), albeit also prone to meltdowns.

If Amber were a cute 15-year-old phenom, I think she would be going to worlds. The committee just said, oops, sorry, if you're not an anointed one, no amount of hard work (and results) is enough. Note: I think this is different from the Nigaso/Ashley situation. Ashley had a bad skate but her prior good skates had secured the 3rd spot. So between Amber and Chen, I would take the skater with the potential 3A and a chance to compete with the Russians/Japanese. The USA judges recognized her quality, so I would hope the international judges would as well. Instead, the international judges will be scrutinizing every Chen rotation. Again, I love Chen (best spins), but it should have been Amber.
 

Senseo

Spectator
Joined
Jul 16, 2020
I am so sad for Amber. The committee is saying that hard work, including the tremendous challenge of learning the 3A, isn't enough. I love Chen's skating but she consistently under-rotates. I love Mariah, too, but she often has meltdowns. The media love Mariah because she is cute and feminine, but Amber has the goods (fully rotated jumps, artistry, and a potential 3A), albeit also prone to meltdowns.
Artisty ? Where ? Amber has strong jumps but she isn’t artistry .
I think he shouldn't have received 72PCS in US nationals and the international jury agrees with me.
 

CoyoteChris

Record Breaker
Joined
Dec 4, 2004
I am surprised. I thought they would go with Amber, on principle. I am always a little bit uncomfortable about leaving these decisions in the hands of THE COMMITTEE (bwa-ha-ha) instead of having a clear criterion involving head-to-head competition.
I thought it was an odd choice. I love both of them....but Amber is improving faster than Karen. Go back and look at the Tara and Johnny show on NBC. Go through the slo mow of Karen's landings and then slow down your DVR even farther....and see where Karen's blade hits the ice. Johnny is correct. He changed his opinion of the jumps after seeing them....and A. Liu's also. He is also correct that the orgs need to change their view on technology to determine where a jump is landed. As he stated, skaters' skating lives now depend on these landings. Get the judges some real monitors instead of those silly tiny note books. If NBC can record the landings like they do, there is no reason the judges cant see them also.
Amber lands jumps well and is trying the 3A. Back the horse that is getting faster. (caveat: unless worlds is set back 4 months, there is just no way its gonna happen. Unless it happens in a country that has lax covid protacols. You wanna send our athletes there? 77 percent of the Japanese think the Olys should be set back or canceled...and a decision time draws near....no one wants their parents to die....
Tues, Jan 12th
 
Last edited:

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
i love Amber and i think she is really gutsy trying to do a 3A and am happy she was finally able to put together a clean skate, but the likelihood of her putting it together on the biggest stage she's ever skated on is not good. she unfortunately has a track record of imploding when she needs to skate clean and putting her out for a world championship where olympic spots are on the line is not the best idea. i think USFS would have entertained it if spots weren't on the line, but between her and Karen, Karen is by far the safer choice with a higher scoring potential.
 

readernick

Medalist
Joined
Dec 5, 2015
Karen is by far the safer choice with a higher scoring potential.
Karen may be the same choice, but the second statement isn't true. Her BV is lower than Amber's. And, despite 5 seasons on the GP, being sent to Worlds and the Olympics, she has a never scored more than 201 points internationally. Amber would definitely score more if clean. Their respective artistry is open to individual preference although they aren't scored dramatically differently internationally in PCS , but Amber clearly has the advantage of actually rotating her jumps. Amber's problem is consistency not scoring potential.
 

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
Karen may be the same choice, but the second statement isn't true. Her BV is lower than Amber's. And, despite 5 seasons on the GP, being sent to Worlds and the Olympics, she has a never scored more than 201 points internationally. Amber would definitely score more if clean. Their respective artistry is open to individual preference although they aren't scored dramatically differently internationally in PCS , but Amber clearly has the advantage of actually rotating her jumps. Amber's problem is consistency not scoring potential.
this is probably the main deciding factor against Amber, she's hardly ever clean and she has had pretty big meltdowns before. she also doesn't have the international reputation and PCS advantage Karen has. she's just too much of a wildcard for them to risk.
 
Top