PDA

View Full Version : Podkopayeva, Miller, Khorkina, who had the best career



Pages : 1 [2] 3

Quintuple
04-25-2010, 06:50 PM
OK, this is one poll I could vote on. I've read all the posts above and I've totally thought most of the same things too. judgejudy - I'm amazed that you have all this perspective on past and current gymnastics and figure skating, as your profile says you're 18! I grew up watching this particular era, and still have it on tape. Hell, I just finished watching the '97 event finals, and for the first time, I'm actually thinking Khorkina should have won beam over Kui Yuan Yuan (I know, blasphemy!) and Gogean. Gogean in the other poll somewhat bothers me because I think she's received sooo many gifts.

I voted for Khorkina, without looking at stats, because she really was a top gymnast who could medal in the AA (and other events) for 11 whole years (1994-2004), AND she really kept up with drastic changes in the code, and changed her routines up for that.

Given the general "skill set" and style each of these three gymnasts had, I feel Khorkina changed it up and challenged herself the most to be the best in every judging era. I know Miller did this pretty well too, but I did sometimes feel that she's just working out of the same basic routines. She was great, but subjectively, even though she was a top gymnast for 5 or 6 years, she never really screamed "dominant" as much as Khorkina did, even though she kinda was more of an all-arounder. It's a toughy, but I just feel it in my bones that this poll goes to Khorkina. Podkopayeva really was only a top gymnast for 2 years (2 magical years at that), but before that, the elements were there but the entire package wasn't.

Rob
04-26-2010, 03:13 PM
I have to say Khorkina because of longevity, but I preferred watching Miller and Podkopayeva.

Beefcake
04-26-2010, 04:22 PM
Close one, but I had to go with the Ostrich over Miller. Poor Shannon, bested by a Bird yet again. :P

bardtoob
04-27-2010, 05:27 AM
Davydova was the first to do many skills starting in the mid-70s. She should have been on the 1976 Olympic Team, having finished 2nd in the AA at the USSR Championships as well as 1st on Bars and 2nd on Floor. However, Larissa Latynina was the head coach that year and preferred gymnast with strong compulsories and dance to strong acrobatics since they were more reliable competitors (scorers) since there was less risk of major mistakes. Latynina also thought that Comaneci and Ungureanu would be less of a threat if it was harder for the judges to directly compare their routines to other top routines in the competition; she tried to manipulate the context of the competition since only the Soviet gymnasts were in their league, thinking that they would not be rewarded for their difficulty if their performances were not as refined as Soviet gymnasts.

There is a perception that Davydova was an up and comer that was trained by the Soviet gymnastics machine to unseat Comenci and pacify Eberle, et al. However, Davydova was actually 3 months old than Nadia and was lucky enough to still be at her peak in 1980 because internal politics almost completely wasted her talent by not using her earlier. She never did as well in competition after 1980 as she did in Moscow.


Yeah if Galieva had been in the 92 Olympic AA she might have ended up being the Davydova of 1980.

I think it would have made for a more interesting GYMNASTICS competition if Galieva was in the AA, but after Miller had a higher combined score in the compulsories and team options than any gymnast on Unified Team, Alexandrov began sh*****g himself, and had to do something to change the context of the competition. Nobody had accomplished that since Nadia. The Americans had the political clout but never a gymnast of legitimate ability to compete head to head with the Soviets so they tended to back Romanian gymnasts to spite the Soviets. Miller completely changed the playing field. He figured that if the European Champion was brought back, then European judges would support the European Champion over an American because the Europeans would not want it thought that American has something better than anything is Europe, especially in gymnastics based in European dance.

I always think this clip is very interesting:

Oksana Chusovitina - 1992 Olympics Team Optionals - Floor Ex (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VeY4p_JBzdg)

The commentator actually announces that Miller has won the AA before it actually began because in previous AA competition formats she would have been able to win with watered down routines based on her scores from earlier portions of the competition.

ETA: Even if it turned out to be premature, it is nice to hear "Shannon Miller has won the all-around." It makes me wish I could change my vote from Lilia to Shannon.

briancoogaert
04-27-2010, 11:00 AM
OMG, it's very difficult ! Those three are among my favorite ever.
In term of achievements, I'd say Khorkina has it all (except an All-Around OGM).

But in term of career, Lilia's was just perfect. She went onto the scene in 1993 and improved her skills and consistency, little by little. To be at her very best in the Olympic year.

Jimena
04-27-2010, 03:59 PM
I voted for Lilia. She won every title that mattered and her AA gold in 1996 was deeply satisfying and deserved.

bek
04-27-2010, 04:32 PM
. She never did as well in competition after 1980 as she did in Moscow.


Davydova had an injury at Worlds the next year, which is why she maybe messed up a skill. She still got bronze I believe even with a fall and would have won, if it weren't for that. She was a great gymnast, its sad her All Around Olympic gold is treated the way it is by the press and some, but I get the impression its not that way in the gymnastics community. Its also sad she didn't get some of her skills named after her.

judgejudy27
04-27-2010, 04:55 PM
It seems Davydova was someone who was done in by her own federation fo years, and never was allowed to be seen as the gymnast she really was even with her Olympic AA title. That is a shame.

bek
04-28-2010, 01:22 AM
It seems Davydova was someone who was done in by her own federation fo years, and never was allowed to be seen as the gymnast she really was even with her Olympic AA title. That is a shame.
Davydova was screwed in 76, but she also had injuries and things that hurt her. She was pulled from one world team at the last minute do to the injuries. The Soviets had a lot of depth and no gymnast was indispensible.

If the American fans had seen Davydova's performances, Davydova would have won hearts. The Commentators would have explained the scoring, and how innovative Davydova was and her comeback story would have been heartwarming.

But instead you had the boycott, and a US media who didn't understand gymnastics scoring or really gymnastics. This media was more than willing to believe Karoyli's "Nadia was screwed" in favor of unknown "Soviet." Big names in the US gymanstics community were calling Davydova's win more than fair, but people like Bart Conner weren't exactly listened to or given much of a voice. In Britain I believe, who saw the competition, Davydova was voted favorite gymnast.

From what I understand Davydova is very much respected amongst the gymnastics community.

judgejudy27
04-28-2010, 01:29 AM
Davydova was screwed in 76, but she also had injuries and things that hurt her. She was pulled from one world team at the last minute do to the injuries. The Soviets had a lot of depth and no gymnast was indispensible.

If the American fans had seen Davydova's performances, Davydova would have won hearts. The Commentators would have explained the scoring, and how innovative Davydova was and her comeback story would have been heartwarming.

But instead you had the boycott, and a US media who didn't understand gymnastics scoring or really gymnastics. This media was more than willing to believe Karoyli's "Nadia was screwed" in favor of unknown "Soviet." Big names in the US gymanstics community were calling Davydova's win more than fair, but people like Bart Conner weren't exactly listened to or given much of a voice. In Britain I believe, who saw the competition, Davydova was voted favorite gymnast.

From what I understand Davydova is very much respected amongst the gymnastics community.

Wow Bart Conner defended and helped tried to help validate Davydova's Olympic AA title with explanations? Just curious if that was before or after he married Nadia in 1994? It is pretty impressive if that was even after he and Nadia were already a romanatic item (I think that didnt happen until the early 90s though) and gives even more evidence to how Davydova truly deserved the 1980 Olympic AA title. I did read an interview by Nadia about a decade ago though where she said Yelena clearly deserved to win the AA that year as well though, so in that case it shouldnt be surprising if Bart would say the same thing.

On another note I am amazed Shaposhnikova never finished higher than 3rd in any major AA competition- World Cup, Europeans, Worlds, Olympics, in so many appearances. It seemed she was often tabbed as the one to beat or one of the ones to beat atleast, and yet she never came through in a major AA event for whatever reason. It seemed much of the press were talking about her possibly winning the Moscow AA and she led after prelims (team competition scoring) but still ended up only 4th.

bek
04-28-2010, 01:48 AM
Wow Bart Conner defended and helped tried to help validate Davydova's Olympic AA title with explanations? Just curious if that was before or after he married Nadia in 1994? It is pretty impressive if that was even after he and Nadia were already a romanatic item (I think that didnt happen until the early 90s though) and gives even more evidence to how Davydova truly deserved the 1980 Olympic AA title. I did read an interview by Nadia about a decade ago though where she said Yelena clearly deserved to win the AA that year as well though, so in that case it shouldnt be surprising if Bart would say the same thing.

On another note I am amazed Shaposhnikova never finished higher than 3rd in any major AA competition- World Cup, Europeans, Worlds, Olympics, in so many appearances. It seemed she was often tabbed as the one to beat or one of the ones to beat atleast, and yet she never came through in a major AA event for whatever reason. It seemed much of the press were talking about her possibly winning the Moscow AA and she led after prelims (team competition scoring) but still ended up only 4th.

Shaposhnikova was an amazing gymnast too and probably was the best gymnast there on paper. But Shaposhnikova was not a mentally tough gymnast and had the tendency to always make enough mistakes to ensure she lost the major titles.

I believe I read an article which said, in 1980 Bart and others were defending Yelena's win. People like Glenn Sundby (editor of International Gymnast, founding member of USAG, etc) they were all saying the win was legitimate. Heck even Maxi Gnauck's coach was calling it correct.

Erin
04-28-2010, 07:27 PM
If the American fans had seen Davydova's performances, Davydova would have won hearts. The Commentators would have explained the scoring, and how innovative Davydova was and her comeback story would have been heartwarming.

I always find it interesting how differently Davydova and Comaneci's lives (and fame) turned out. Davydova is now coaching and judging in Canada, leading a pretty anonymous life while Comaneci is still somewhat famous. I had the chance to meet Davydova when I was volunteering at the 2007 Canadian Championships where she was the head judge on the panel I was working and it took me a long time to piece together who she was. More casual fans and non-fans wouldn't have the first clue who she was.

(Now all that said, I found Davydova to be super bitchy so it doesn't really bother me that she hasn't had all that commercial success.)

IceKween
05-05-2010, 02:23 PM
Interesting comparing Khorkina v Miller. I would still vote for Khorkina due to her longevity (though Miller was around a long time too) and the total number of medals she collected.
As for K's AA fiasco. Yeah, maybe a champion would have shrugged off the fall on vault and make her determined to hit the remainder of her routines. But I remember watching it, it wasn't just the fall on the vault in the competition, it was how totally off her warm-up on it was. It's jarring as an athlete to be in the most important competition of your life, and all of a sudden you are soooooo off the mark. Khork had no idea it was a bad vault setup, she started doubting herself and her body. Been there. I have no doubt Khork would have at least tried harder after that vault, but she believed the gold was gone, and that was her one mission. She already had a collection of medals, she only wanted that AA gold. Uggh. That AA should have just been started over from scratch, it was a travesty.


Bek, who said that what happened with the vault wasn't wrong? No one thinks that! I was simply saying that Khorkina was one of the best competitors out there and she missed on an event that was not set up wrong. She should have been able to compose herself and hit. If she had done that, she would have had a redo on vault and could have won the competition. It is her fault for giving up if you claim that is what happened when you say she didn't "fight." Khorkina was known for being a grade A betch and for yelling and pushing people around. When things didn't go her way, she let it show and she did that her by missing bars and then refusing a do-over on vault at the end of competition. I pity the situation but in the end, Khorkina buckled under the pressure and as a multiple time world champion, she shouldn't have.

I also don't see how you can say it isn't Khorkina's fault about the vault thing but then not give Shannon some leeway for the whole Gutsu fiasco in 92. The rules did say a substitute could only be made in the case of injury and Galieva has come forward and admitted there was NO injury. It sounds like Shannon got cheated, too? So it really evens out.

judgejudy27
05-05-2010, 04:14 PM
I agree the AA in 2000 should have been started from scratch once the vault controversy was figured out only halfway through. That would have been the best resolution for everyone. I am sure those who had gone through 2 solid events and one wasnt vault may n not have been thrilled, but hey even they have a chance to improve on some small things.

BigB08822
05-05-2010, 08:10 PM
I agree the AA in 2000 should have been started from scratch once the vault controversy was figured out only halfway through. That would have been the best resolution for everyone. I am sure those who had gone through 2 solid events and one wasnt vault may n not have been thrilled, but hey even they have a chance to improve on some small things.

I agree. I think they should have done this but they had television rights and all sorts of stuff to deal with. If the Olympics weren't such a commercialized competition then they could have easily restarted the competition after a rest or the next day. However, with tons of other sports and television issues going on, they knew that wouldn't work. Too bad.