Scott Hamilton Zoom Talks with Skaters: Lysacek, Boitano, Gold & More

skylark

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Scott Hamilton Zoom Talks with Skaters: Lysacek, Boitano, Gold & More

This talk/interview with Evan Lysacek has a slow start (talking about his wife and their activities), but when Scott gets down to the real subject, Evan's skating career, it's like a slow burn that gets better and brighter as it goes, piling on layers of meaning. Evan is the same quiet-spoken gentleman as ever; he gives everyone else credit and praise whenever he has a chance; he's full of admiration for Plushenko and his other competitors, so many of whom were already World Champions coming into the 2010 Vancouver Olympics.

ETA: There's also a play-by-play of his high/low experience of being so sick (flu or virus) at the Torino 2006 Olympics and going ahead and competing the FS, when he might have withdrawn. I think it's pretty cool.

This was recorded on 6/21/20. It lives up to the billing of Scott and Kori's series of quarantine Zoom interviews: intimate, inspirational conversations.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Lzc0mdOcz0

ETA: they start talking about skating at the 10-minute mark.
 

Jaana

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Thanks so much for the clip! I really enjoy listening to Evan, he speaks so clearly that even I can understand what he is saying... It was so interesting to hear how his career with Frank as the coach started.
 

Tolstoj

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I didn't know Scott Hamilton and Kori Ade started this youtube channel for interviews, that's really cool.
 

skylark

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Thanks so much for the clip! I really enjoy listening to Evan, he speaks so clearly that even I can understand what he is saying... It was so interesting to hear how his career with Frank as the coach started.

You're welcome! :) I'm glad you enjoyed it. I was particularly impressed with the story, which I'd never heard from him in its entirety, about getting desperately ill with a virus at the 2006 Torino Olympics. It was interesting, the way Frank Carroll was able to push the right buttons and make some suggestions, still leaving the decisions up to Evan. His Carmen FS at that event was the first skate of his I'd ever seen, and it made me an instant fan.
 

skylark

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I didn't know Scott Hamilton and Kori Ade started this youtube channel for interviews, that's really cool.

Scott did the interviews every Friday (or every other) for weeks. Yesterday I also listened to one he did with Meryl, Charlie and Tanith that is equally awesome.
 

el henry

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Scott's interview with Brian Orser and Tracey Wilson was wonderful too. A lot of reminiscing of their competitive and pro careers from back in the day, including Toller stories:agree:
 

Arriba627

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I don't know how I missed these interviews. Looks like I have hours of fun listening ahead! Thx so much for posting. I started listening to a little of the Brian and Tracy interview and will definitely listen to the whole thing.
 

momrk

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These are all enjoyable- I binged on a bunch of them yesterday, and they are just fun to listen to
 

skylark

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If you like to listen to stream-of-consciousness rambling and tangents, do be sure and check out the one with Gracie. It's fun but also enlightening in a way that stream-of-consciousness can be. :love:

Scott does his research on every one of these. He tends to begin at the beginning, how they started skating, and he sometimes is able to ask a question that no one's ever been asked before (Meryl) ... and he always frames the narrative loosely so that the skater(s) can ramble or be very specific. The ones I've heard so far always have something thoughtful or thought-provoking.

The one with Ashley Wagner recounts recent events, compared with many of the others, but benefits from her perspective of the past two years since retiring. Hers is about becoming the person who could finally create her own mental environment that could aid her in breaking the US Ladies' ten-year world medal "drought" and becoming the World Silver Medalist.
 

Blades of Passion

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I was not thrilled to see these two paired together, since I consider neither of them to be deserving of winning their Olympic titles (which they have huge ego about), and because of their problematic viewpoints on other things in life. There are worthwhile things to take out of the interview though.

I'd mostly like to discuss the parts where they are talking about "manipulating" the scoring system, and how they didn't understand what was being criticized: aka, Evan was getting too much credit for doing robotic transitions and choreography and mediocre skating skills and jumps, which nonetheless fulfilled superficial criteria in the scoring system. Evan talks about how he took a safe and single-minded approach to his programs, just doing what was told to him and repeating the same moves all the time, not thinking about other considerations. That's a pretty good glimpse into how skaters become less well rounded, and how the current environment in skating enforces this narrowness.
 

skylark

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^^ It was hard to tell from the first paragraph alone, but I get that you think Evan has "huge ego about" his Olympic victory. As compared to whom? Plushenko? :rofl:

I've always found Evan to be proud of his Olympic win, as he has every right to be, but humble, appreciative of his competitors, and generous to everyone whenever he possibly could be. And, I loved Evan's skating: he exuded passion and intensity; he executed Lori Nichol's choreography to the best of his ability, and his musicality always seemed to be an integral part of him.

Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion, so we can agree to disagree.

I found it disheartening, when I joined this forum 5 years ago, that no one could even mention Evan's name in a positive way without getting a storm of fervid negatives in response. I still do. Oh, well. I'm content to have given other Evan fans (who do exist around here; they're just mostly silent) an opportunity to hear this interview if they hadn't known about it previously.
 

Skatesocs

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^^ It was hard to tell from the first paragraph alone, but I get that you think Evan has "huge ego about" his Olympic victory. As compared to whom? Plushenko? :rofl:

Did Plushenko also interview with Hamilton? Otherwise I fail to see the confusion.
 

Ic3Rabbit

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^^ It was hard to tell from the first paragraph alone, but I get that you think Evan has "huge ego about" his Olympic victory. As compared to whom? Plushenko? :rofl:

I've always found Evan to be proud of his Olympic win, as he has every right to be, but humble, appreciative of his competitors, and generous to everyone whenever he possibly could be. And, I loved Evan's skating: he exuded passion and intensity; he executed Lori Nichol's choreography to the best of his ability, and his musicality always seemed to be an integral part of him.

Everyone is entitled to his or her opinion, so we can agree to disagree.

I found it disheartening, when I joined this forum 5 years ago, that no one could even mention Evan's name in a positive way without getting a storm of fervid negatives in response. I still do. Oh, well. I'm content to have given other Evan fans (who do exist around here; they're just mostly silent) an opportunity to hear this interview if they hadn't known about it previously.

I wouldn't say I'm a diehard fan of Evan's or anything but I've always said positive things about him and defended him against the haters.
I've learned that no matter what: If someone's so negative about someone they don't know, there's not much you can really say to change their minds, they'll always be sour about them for unknown reasons. Sad but true.

Anyway, on the topic at hand, Evan has always been humble about his World and OGMs. And he admits that he knows he had lesser abilities in some categories of skating than others, but he always made it work. He was the hardest worker I have ever seen on the ice in my life, and I've seen and trained with many other National, World and Olympic champions.
 

skylark

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Did Plushenko also interview with Hamilton? Otherwise I fail to see the confusion.

No, there was no Hamilton-Plushenko interview. That wasn't what I was confused about. I apologize if that wasn't clear. I couldn't tell who the previous poster was talking about in the post's first paragraph, when the post said "these two paired together." The second paragraph explained that @BladesofPassion was talking about Hamilton and Lysacek.

I referenced Plushenko because my impression is that no one has a bigger ego about his or her Olympic win than Plushenko does.
 

skylark

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I wouldn't say I'm a diehard fan of Evan's or anything but I've always said positive things about him and defended him against the haters.
I've learned that no matter what: If someone's so negative about someone they don't know, there's not much you can really say to change their minds, they'll always be sour about them for unknown reasons. Sad but true.

Anyway, on the topic at hand, Evan has always been humble about his World and OGMs. And he admits that he knows he had lesser abilities in some categories of skating than others, but he always made it work. He was the hardest worker I have ever seen on the ice in my life, and I've seen and trained with many other National, World and Olympic champions.

:thank: Very well said indeed.

Evan said in the middle of the interview, "I was never the best skater in any competition.... But I always knew I could win." The more I let that sink in, the better I liked it. He recognized other skaters' talents, but he knew his own strengths and capabilities and trusted them.
 

Ic3Rabbit

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:thank: Very well said indeed.

Evan said in the middle of the interview, "I was never the best skater in any competition.... But I always knew I could win." The more I let that sink in, the better I liked it. He recognized other skaters' talents, but he knew his own strengths and capabilities and trusted them.

And he's so correct in that. It's the best way to think as an elite athlete. :agree:
 

Blades of Passion

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I referenced Plushenko because my impression is that no one has a bigger ego about his or her Olympic win than Plushenko does.

I'm okay with people having a big ego when they've done something deserving of it.

The mantra of "I know I'm not the best skater, but I will work the hardest and do my best" can be an admirable stance, but the way Lysacek talks about it is somewhat different, he's saying that he deserved to beat the competition because he could deliver his best (and game the system better) and they couldn't. The thing is, even if you deliver your best, that doesn't mean you deserve to win. If someone is significantly better than you, they don't have to be their absolute best, they can do a mistake and still deserve to beat you. Comments like the ones he made about Weir back in the day - "well maybe he would score better if he wasn't so girly" (paraphrasing) - show an intolerable ignorance on his part.

There's something insidious about his mindset of how he says "compare = despair", refusing to look closely at things that make him uncomfortable, instead only thinking about himself. Yes, it can certainly be bad to only want to copy someone else, and to feel like you are an inherently worse human because another person is doing something better than you. It's a huge problem in modern society and especially in the social media age, that we are constantly bombarded with messages and feelings of "this is how much your life is worth, you should feel bad about yourself if you aren't wealthy or famous or perfect looking." However, there DOES need to be some level of understanding about how to grow as a person, about constantly educating yourself, about being able to see ideas from others.

The extra issue beyond this, is that skating is not just sport. It's an art/entertainment. People can like your work regardless if you win or not, because the enjoyment of watching it has nothing to do with the medals. A skater can gain a bigger fanbase and longterm appreciation over someone who beat them, because of their specific character and artistry. Or when the technical aspect of skating is debatable, people can appreciate things that are "objectively" better, rather than what one specific rule system says is better. Even in less artistic and more straightforward sports, viewers usually don't like people who win by "exploiting technicalities" (or for example the debate about the 3-point shot in basketball). Every rule system that we as humans make, is only an approximation of value, not an exact reflection of our gut feeling and subconscious evaluation of what is most fair. Lysacek's view on things is a very corporate, soulless kind of approach. Only winning on paper matters, that's it, nothing else to life.
 

ice coverage

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... I'm content to have given other Evan fans (who do exist around here; they're just mostly silent) an opportunity to hear this interview if they hadn't known about it previously.

In my case, I was aware before your thread that Scott had conducted an extended interview with Evan, but had not felt a burning desire to see it.
I had never disliked Evan, but was not inclined to spend over an hour watching an interview with him.

But ... your very positive review of the interview made me curious enough to take at least a brief peek.
To my pleasant surprise, I ended up happily watching the whole thing. I enjoyed hearing everything that Evan had to say. :)

... I found it disheartening, when I joined this forum 5 years ago, that no one could even mention Evan's name in a positive way without getting a storm of fervid negatives in response. I still do. ...

It is disheartening indeed that any skater like Evan is the subject of widespread and persistent negativity. :(

Thank you for speaking up :bow: with your endorsement of the interview.
 
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