Mid-Grand Prix thoughts | Golden Skate

Mid-Grand Prix thoughts

Status
Not open for further replies.

Skater Boy

Record Breaker
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
Well the first three Grand Prix events are over. So what is everyone's thoughts and opinions? How are your favourites doing? Any surprises? Any leading skaters for the world title?

After the first three events - Skate America, Skate Canada and Grand Prix of France these are my comments.


GENERAL

Russia is most notably missed in ladies, dance and pairs. The ultra elements are not their in ladies or pairs. Dance S/K definitely would have a chance with Chock and Bates being less than super impressive. In pairs Russia is definitely missed; After Japan and The usa it is a dog's breakfast. the ladies it looks like a whole new competition without a lot of triple axels or quads. And the men Russia is not nearly as formidable but nevertheless they would be medal contenders or pretenders.

PAIRS

Knerim and Fraser have not looked great though there is a lot of time for them to improve. They honestly should have lost to the Canadians. K/F dont have the best vehicles but will still battle for gold without a lot of competition minus Russia, China and Canada not as competitive as usual. However,
that being said S-D/D have better programs and rapidly improving. The Canadians don't have the hardest content but this is a very week year where content is weaker. They need to watch their levels. Knerim and Fraser though are world champs and that gives them a lot of confidence . The Japanese team looks like they are ready to avenge last year's disappointment where they were lucky to win silver. The Germans and Georgians were expected to challenge for the bronze but no one looks that great. Canada could sneak in for that bronze again.

MEN'Ssi,

Shoma looks good to defend his title but his teammates will make him work for for it. Adam from France is becoming a challenger. Jun, Sadovsky, Messing,Moris K, Boyang, Jason, Malinin et al can conest for medals too. Adam, Ilia and Jun stand out but I am hoping Messing puts it together as this appears to be his farewell. I don't have great hope for Roman though I think he has skating skills to rival Jason Brown and greats like Chan and Lambie and Buttle. Malinin is amazing technically A quad axel - not even Yuzuru could do that.

DANCE

I though this was a cake walk for Chock and Bates. But they don't have great vehicles and odn't look so hot. ice dance seems to be like a teeter totter up and down. H/B seemed to be losing ground to the new kids and now they are on the cusp of a medal. Last year Italy was moving up and still moving with retirements and Russian in limbo. They clearly had passed GP and now things have turned. GP appeared to have fallen down the Long and Winding road and now are back up maybe challenging for gold. Both the USA and Canada have a hhe final spots on their ice dance teams. The US clearly have C/B and H/B then it is a bunch of excellent up and coming if not world jr success teams. Canada has GP and the the Danadians who never have seemed to really click totally and move up fully and now they are facing the L teams. Poor Carolane and shane are not even in the mix for a bronze let alone a spot (one of two) for worlds.

LADIES

nOT having the Russians really makes a huge difference. Kaori and Loena are the class and have consistency we have seen BOth are getting better as the season progresses. THe US is rebuilding having lost Liu, Bell, Chen for this year, Nice to see Amber and STarr win medals but these are far cry from the Russians. TO be honest the Koreans should be like the Japanese ladies but have not excelled nearly as well. I wait anxiously for the return of Bradie T. Though I wonder if she is more like Polina Edmonds or even Rachel Flatt and she will retire?

THis is the year after olympics (season) and traditionally a weaker year for skating which it is.
 

DancingCactus

On the Ice
Joined
Jan 17, 2022
I haven't managed to watch a lot yet. I don't watch pairs so the lack of quality there doesnt bother me a lot but I do miss a few of my favourites from other disciplines.

ID:
- Seems like Piper and Paul are back, I love both their dances even though Evita is maximum cheese. I can't get rid of my earworm from the free.
- Chock and Bates still have the best lifts imo, but the rest of their programs feels a bit disconnected.
- H/B: love their FD, RD looks like a trashy 70s throwback -_-
- I still don't like G/F.
- Both young French teams have potential.
- I really hope Kanadai are going to make it to the WC, because they are to beautiful and unique to be ignored.
- No idea who is going to come out on top this year....

Women:
- Kaori is in a different league than the others both in terms of skating skills and jumps. She launches into the air and then continues gliding, whereas 90% of the others seem to almost come to a stop before their jumps...Also great new look!
- I think the Koreans get lowballed by the judges a bit.
- I would like Rika to get back to peak performance soon.
- As for Loena, I give her that she's consistent and I love her spins, but the rest feels a bit meh this year.

Men:
- I miss Yuzu and Jason, by the rest if them is still going strong and I'm glad Keegan is still competing!
- I think Shoma is on a different level here. His artistry and the complexity of his programs is otherworldly. I really hope they are not going to boost the PCS of Malinin because of his jumps, because he looks like bambi on ice compared to Shoma.
- So many talented Japanese guys, but I want Yuma back. They need to become more consistent...
- I still like Adam's style, although last season's programs were more interesting to me.
- I want to see more Junwhan. That layback Ina Bauer is to die for and so is his hair.

I'm really looking forward to the GPF to see how the best compare to each other this season.
 

kolyadafan2002

Fan of Kolyada
Final Flight
Joined
Jun 6, 2019
Ice Dance:
- Not a Chock & Bates fan, didn't think they deserved to win against Kaitlin Hawayek and Jean-Luc Baker (who were sublime and my favourites so far this year).
- Don't like the new RD format, can't really get into it.
- Quite like Muramoto/Takahashi, and once they get the consistency the judges will reward them for the amazing performances.
- Notably missing a lot of the top couples like P/C, H/D - although hoping Hawayek/Baker can fill one of the voids.
- Don't like a lot of the top top couples right now. Feel they are being rewarded higher than they are worth.

Men:
- for me, notably missing Yuma Kagiyama. He was my favourite to compete this year, and his skating skills are forever underrated by fans.
- Lot's of messy skates
- Enjoying Kao, even if he isn't on Yuma's level, happy for him - he deserves the GPF.
- Not a fan of most of the current men tbh, but happy for Adam and Matteo.
- Happy with Keegan etc.
- Missing Kolyada (Look at my username, he's always on my mind).

Women:
- Notably missing Wakaba. One of my faves. yes it sucks to have faves like mine.
- Happy Rika is back - even with reduced content still produced one of my favourite FS.
- Happy for Loena.
- Even without Russians, I'm not having decrease in enjoyment. I'm not a fan of pushing unsustainable quads on developing tweens.
- Probably my favourite GP segment so far.

Pairs:
- Happy for Knierim/Frazier.
- Enjoying Japanese pairs.
- Really don't enjoy most of the competition
- Feels like an empty/washed category.
- Russian absence most notable here - probably would provide many more top pairs competitors.
- Just can't sit through a competition - the top pairs are sublime to watch but the weaker pairs I can't find enjoyable.
 

macy

Record Breaker
Joined
Nov 12, 2011
as a general statement, i don't miss Russian skaters as much as i thought i would. even though some are my favorite skaters, i find having healthy, non toxic competition so enjoyable (especially after what happened at the olympics), even if the technical level is lower. tbh their absence isn't impacting me hardly at all.
 

Ziotic

Medalist
Joined
Dec 23, 2016
as a general statement, i don't miss Russian skaters as much as i thought i would. even though some are my favorite skaters, i find having healthy, non toxic competition so enjoyable (especially after what happened at the olympics), even if the technical level is lower. tbh their absence isn't impacting me hardly at all.
I just agree. I really don’t miss the Russians, I much prefer the clean competition we are seeing now.
 

ladyjane

Medalist
Joined
Jun 26, 2012
Country
Netherlands
Halfway there, and I am enjoying the GP's very much in all disciplines. Even the Women whom I have never liked that much to watch. It helps a lot that both Kaori and Loena are enjoying skating (in different ways, because they are different people) and are adult women. Young ones to be sure, but women. Of course, there still are girls as well in the field, but to me they are less interesting to watch. I love it that among the pairs a couple like Deanna and Maxime are making huge strides forward and that there is competition among the Germans, the Italians, even us Dutchies. And the Australians and Japanese are on the rise. Yay. I miss Gaby and Guillaume among the Dancers but there is still a lot to admire among the couples and the men are really exciting. Expect the unexpected there, and that is really fun to watch. Funnily it's there I miss skaters from a certain country, not so much in other disciplines. But then, I also miss Jason Brown and Yuma Kagiyama.
 

Flying Feijoa

On the Ice
Joined
Sep 22, 2019
Country
New-Zealand
Halfway there, and I am enjoying the GP's very much in all disciplines. Even the Women whom I have never liked that much to watch. It helps a lot that both Kaori and Loena are enjoying skating (in different ways, because they are different people) and are adult women. Young ones to be sure, but women. Of course, there still are girls as well in the field, but to me they are less interesting to watch. I love it that among the pairs a couple like Deanna and Maxime are making huge strides forward and that there is competition among the Germans, the Italians, even us Dutchies. And the Australians and Japanese are on the rise. Yay. I miss Gaby and Guillaume among the Dancers but there is still a lot to admire among the couples and the men are really exciting. Expect the unexpected there, and that is really fun to watch. Funnily it's there I miss skaters from a certain country, not so much in other disciplines. But then, I also miss Jason Brown and Yuma Kagiyama.
There with you on the men from that country! They all just seem so young and earnest, and maybe because of their unpredictability it seems there is less politicking/narrative building around them compared to e.g. women or ice dance. The same holds true for men's singles worldwide too. As much as I miss the Yuzu-Nathan days and the quality of the veteran skaters it's exciting to watch a competition where the podium is anyone's guess (goodbye prediction contest points 😆)
And yeah, I am actually enjoying pairs on the ISU GP more than I thought. The field is much shallower (not so fun to watch in its entirety) but the smaller feds are producing some nice surprises.

Dance - bring back the pattern please. Really feeling the effect of the post-Olympic wave of retirements/quasi-retirements 🥲
Women - not my favourite discipline (with or without Russians), but I miss Wakaba. One of the more fascinating rivalries this quad will be Korea vs Japan (again!)
 

Skater Boy

Record Breaker
Joined
Feb 24, 2012
I would give the season so far a B-. Not every year can it be an A. We always have our favourites but we do not have the brilliant skater (maybe close in men). To be brilliant or extra ordinary it cant happen every season. We don't have a Michelle Kwan, GG, Virtue and Moir or Hanyu. The programs some are nice and fairly interesting and I a ppreciate should grow but not out of this world which you could tell even fromt he start with say VM in 2010 or Riverdance by Bourne and Kraatz or Jason Brown. I guess we have the quad axel in mens as soething extreme but we have seen in some ways (because I know a lot have to say about Russian ladies) regression at least tech in women and pairs. In dance these teams are all also rans compared to Gabby and Guillaume, Virtue and Moir, Davis and white and all.
 

noskates

Record Breaker
Joined
Jun 11, 2012
I'm pretty amazed at how very few clean skates we've seen, including this past weekend. At Skate America and Skate Canada I thought well maybe it's just early in the season. I don't think that applies anymore. There have been some pretty awful melt downs - Roman Sadovsky comes to immediate mind. But then I have to remind my self that this is really a building year. So many of our accomplished skaters have retired and moved on and there aren't too many skaters that have been successful in the past still competing. That gives others a chance to showcase but they need to take that chance and run (or skate) with it. So far I've been really disappointed.
 

lariko

Medalist
Joined
Jan 31, 2019
Country
Canada
I find it really hard to enjoy this year’s GP between ‘Russians on the side’ and the overhaul of judging system. I can really feel the behind the scene claim staking in scoring to an almost uncivil degree (Andrews’ silver was just… 6.0 era kind of throwback). Sometimes, GP holds my attention so little, that I find it just plays on the background for music while I am reading, even once scoring is done.

In positives, my favourites really bring home joyful moments about once or twice per each event, except French one. French one was overall the lowest point for me I thought. Rizzo, Uno, Malinin and Grassl really made my day. In women, I am soured by You being laid so low for seemingly no fault of hers… I was happy, of course, for Gubanova to win bronze and that Levito did well. Thoringren and Schizas were a heartbreak, but fingers crossed for both in their next stage!

I am enjoying dance a fair bit, with La/La being my fav team and I really liked the two young American teams I saw in Skate Canada, B/S and G/P

I don’t watch pairs, because… life’s too short to watch pairs in GP this season.

Overall, I liked and was invested into JGP more, and Russians on the side so far pulled off a competitive show, their own peculiarities notwithstanding.

I find it hard to care for who makes GPF from pairs or women, but will def watch ID and men. I want Russians back.
 
Last edited:

GoneWithTheWind

On the Ice
Joined
Dec 7, 2018
Country
United-Kingdom
I think we'll have a clearer picture of ice dance once the GP is finished. So far, C/B had a rough performance at SkAm, so have a significantly lower SB, this weekend at NHK we should see if they are able to score on par with G/F and G/P. I am also interested to see if G/P's score from SkCan holds up in Espoo; last season, their scores never reached the ones they scored at SkCan, but I think they have significantly better material this season. The GPF in dance is shaping up to be amazing!

Personally, I'm finding the pairs events quite exciting, with the possibility for silver and bronze at most GP events wide open. It's nice to see a depth in countries like Italy and Germany, as well as to see the huge improvements teams like the Kovalevs and Conti/Macii have made. The field does feel a bit empty, but in my view, this is just as much to do with the swathe of retirements/splits after the Olympics than just the Russians being absent. We've lost 8 teams from the 2022 field (with a 9th currently banned - B/Z), and, despite the increasing longevity of pairs teams, there's only 1 pair still actively competing together (although not on the international circuit) this season from the 2018 Olympics (Tarasova/Morozov).
 

karlowens2

On the Ice
Joined
Mar 6, 2012
as a general statement, i don't miss Russian skaters as much as i thought i would. even though some are my favorite skaters, i find having healthy, non toxic competition so enjoyable (especially after what happened at the olympics), even if the technical level is lower. tbh their absence isn't impacting me hardly at all.
Glad to hear you share this. I've had the same impression. The pall of constantly monitoring Russian's antics had really worn me down. Won't get into it. This year I see some freshness in the competition. Perhaps it's positively impacting the competitors too. Two weekends ago in France we saw the return of a much loved skater Mae Meite and two men skaters coming to the fore - Luc Economedies and Adam...Fa. Wonderful skaters I never paid much attention too. Also non-Russia Europe is coming back. Last weekend Daniel Grassl and Denis V. on the podium. Wonderful to see. Even in my Germany we've had podium finishes (not in GP yet).

As far as technical level now assured was anyone that Russia wasn't slipping their competitors something? Or manipulating puberty to make child jumping machines?
 

lariko

Medalist
Joined
Jan 31, 2019
Country
Canada
I am perfectly content without Russians, even in Pairs. And BTW, the Georgian pairs are really Russians skating for Georgia.
So what? Safina/Berulava withdrew anyway.

There are Mishina/Galliamov, Boykova/Kozlovskiy, Pavlyuchenko/Khodykin, Khabibulnia/Knyazhuk, Mukhortova/Evgen’ev, Chikmareva/Yanchenkov who are just awesome, as well as new partnerships like Boyarintzeva/Pleshkov who are really awesome. There is just nothing on GP that can even come close.

I mean, the only discipline Russians are not particularly great at is ice dance, but I would have loved to see Kaganovskaya/Angelopol in JGP to see how they stack up vs Mrazkova/Mrazek.

It’s more fun when there are Russians in the mix. Starr Andrews silver alone proves how bad things are.

And I am not even talking about Juniors. I waited for JWC to come to Calgary for 3 years, and no Russians. Like Montreal in 2020…. What a cluster-frack.

And it always boggles my mind that people are like praising their opportunity to discover the lesser known… like, seriously, nobody is watching Nationals and Challengers and Juniors or something? Well, that sure isn’t Russians’ fault for once. Yeah, lots of skaters are out there, but there is a reason why they couldn’t make it into GP or medal before.

But the JWC in Calgary without Russians sure takes the cake of giant suckage. I get upset and depressed every time I think about it. Like, gosh, Popov or Murav’yeva might have made it here, def Chikmareva/Yanchenkov and Kaganovskaya/Angelopol… K/A have absolutely insane free dance this year too…
 
Last edited:

lariko

Medalist
Joined
Jan 31, 2019
Country
Canada
SKATER BOY "The US clearly have C/B and H/B then it is a bunch of excellent up and coming if not world jr success teams."

Oona and Gage Brown (USA) are the reigning JW Ice Dance Champions. That isn't a success?
They mean JGP this year, where there are no US teams in the JGPF which was a surprise.
 

LadyB

Record Breaker
Joined
Jan 7, 2016
There are Mishina/Galliamov, Boykova/Kozlovskiy, Pavlyuchenko/Khodykin, Khabibulnia/Knyazhuk, Mukhortova/Evgen’ev, Chikmareva/Yanchenkov who are just awesome, as well as new partnerships like Boyarintzeva/Pleshkov who are really awesome. There is just nothing on GP that can even come close.


It’s more fun when there are Russians in the mix.

And I am not even talking about Juniors. I waited for JWC to come to Calgary for 3 years, and no Russians.
Totally agree. Pairs (and Women) are just non-events to me. Adding T/M to the list, what can I say...
I pop in a GP event here and there, but I'm no longer looking forward to it. Luckily, we've got the Russian competitions.

I also was hoping for years a GP or other major event would come to the UK...and it happens in the year without Team Russia! Kudos to all those that can thoroughly enjoy it, even though results need to be taken with a pinch of salt.
Before anyone gets their blood pressure up: No, I don't take the scores at Russian comps too serious either, but, especially in pairs, I thought last season 'now I'm looking at the world champions, then I'll switch over to 1tv to watch the best in the world'. Nothing has changed. May this nightmare be over by next season.
 

el henry

Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps
Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 3, 2014
Country
United-States
I am liking the GP events this year, even pairs. Any discipline that sees the rise of 👑 Deanna and Maxime is a good discipline to watch for me.

The men are chaos and fun and all the usual adjectives. Post Olympic drop-off, yes, but still fun. Dance is intriguing, although Chock/Bates look rough, I love Hawayek/Baker's programs (yes both of them ;))

I have never watched Rusnats, therefore I haven't watched one second of the "Russian cup" or whatever they are calling it, (which appears to be expanded Rusnats) and I am not about to. I think it's great for folks who want to watch, but nothing there for me. Then again, I haven't watched any of the GP ladies either.

I think this season has been dreamy, if not perfect. I hope it continues that way. :)
 

el henry

Fangirl of men’s spirals and split jumps
Record Breaker
Joined
Mar 3, 2014
Country
United-States
To be honest, this phrasing is awful, especially with :)at the end


I don't understand why it is awful.:scratch2:

I am talking about skating and a skating season, which is what we discuss here in the Edge. If we are talking world events, there are other places in the Forum for that.

Some folks find the absence of certain skaters to be downside, I do not. At all.

There is a Meek Mill tune, "Dreams and Nightmares", which Philadelphia sports fan have adopted. What some think are nightmares for skating season, I find other skaters fulfilling their dreams. I am on the dreamy side. Someone may not agree with me, which is of course more than OK, but that is my opinion and my side.

I hope this clarifies.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top