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rayhaneh
01-30-2013, 08:57 PM
Abbott's PCS might have been the result of a thought process along the lines of "That wasn't very convincing. We're not going to hold you up over that cleaner more exciting program with harder jumps we saw a few minutes ago." But his PCS were still about 10 points higher than Aaron's, so the judges didn't go too far out of their way to pass him over on purpose. The jump content did that.

That might well be the case, but then the reasoning of the judges was flawed. For the most part, components shouldn't be that much influenced by the technical success in terms of jumps. Max Aaron's energy on the night could help boost his P/E, and likewise the somewhat lackluster performance by Abbot could be reflected in his P/E as well, but things like CH should not in any way beneficiate from a boost just because you landed your jumps, or even had a good night out there, because that's a totally seperate thing to judge

But let's not compare to Abbott then, let's compare to Johnson who also had a great skate that night, although admitedly not on the same technical level. Of course, Aaron's TES should dwarf that of Johnson, which they duly do by about 15 points. But I don't see how Aaron could be marked above Johnson in any component - skating skills, transitions, P/E, Choreography and Interpretation should all be noted well below, with the component where they would be the closest being P/E, although again, Johnson beats Aaron hands down when it comes to criteria such as "emotional and intellectual involvement", "carriage", "clarity of movement", or "variety and contrast". The judges did have the good sense to award Johnson higher Transitions, but higher CH and IN to Max Aaron make no sense whatsoever. Since I would argue that Johnson's marks on the night were about right, I'd conclude that it was Aaron's which were markedly too high (likewise, they gave higher IN to Aaron compared to Rippon, who also had a great skate - again, I don't quite see how you can defend that based on the criteria that make up the "Interpretation" components)

For the record, I do agree that Abbott didn't have a great skate that night, and his PCs were about as high as they were going to be anyway and shouldn't have gone any higher for the sake of being "held up" (likewise, I do not think that Abbott deserved the win either). The problem to me is more that Max Aaron's PCs were not just inflated (as are the marks of most skaters who have a clean skate, especially in the context of Nationals, and not just in the US) but unrealistic. You argue that Abbott's PCs "were still about 10 points higher" than Aaron's, but frankly that's not a lot: it merely means that Abbott has on average 1 point more than Aaron in every component (which is barely more than the different that there is currently between Chan/ Takahashi and Fernandez in PCs). Given what we've seen on the ice, I don't think it accurately reflects the distance in terms of components between the two

gkelly
01-30-2013, 09:30 PM
Max Aaron's energy on the night could help boost his P/E, and likewise the somewhat lackluster performance by Abbot could be reflected in his P/E as well, but things like CH should not in any way beneficiate from a boost just because you landed your jumps, or even had a good night out there, because that's a totally seperate thing to judge

I agree with most of your post. I just wanted to single this out because I do think that "having a good night out there" can affect the execution of the choreography in some ways that would legitimately raise the CH score. E.g., skating with speed and confidence will have a positive effect on ice coverage and on utilization of personal and public space. Being "on" in terms of timing will have a positive effect on phrasing.

Landing the jumps alone wouldn't affect the choreography, but landing the jumps in time with the music would, and missing the landings will probably lead to getting off the music each time for a few seconds at least.

rayhaneh
01-30-2013, 09:53 PM
I agree with most of your post. I just wanted to single this out because I do think that "having a good night out there" can affect the execution of the choreography in some ways that would legitimately raise the CH score. E.g., skating with speed and confidence will have a positive effect on ice coverage and on utilization of personal and public space. Being "on" in terms of timing will have a positive effect on phrasing.

Landing the jumps alone wouldn't affect the choreography, but landing the jumps in time with the music would, and missing the landings will probably lead to getting off the music each time for a few seconds at least.

I can see your point, although wouldn't falls in that case affect IN instead of CH (CH being really about the structure/ construction of the program whereas IN does include the notion of timing)? It would actually be interesting to find out if there are any guidelines as to how much possible falls on technical elements should be allowed to influence IN or other components really

That's actually the reason why I brought up the example of Johnson (and Rippon) in this because that allowed me to bring the comparison between two athletes who did execute their program well (Johnson ended up exclusively with positive GOE on all his technical elements), the only major difference technically being the difficulty of the jumps which shouldn't really influence PCs

Vagabond
01-30-2013, 09:53 PM
I have to be honest that I avoid comments like "skates like a man" because it implies men are better than women... or that there is weakness or frailty in being a woman, and I know plenty of women who are tough as nails. (I hate the phrase "throws like a girl" too. Some girls could knock you to the ground with their throw.) That being said, I did love how aggressive and confident Max was, and how safe and secure his jumps were. I don't want to lump that in with "manly" behavior, though, as I always bristle at the potential homophobia or gender bias in statements like that. Just sayin.


oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo
(Wop wop wop wop)
oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo
Skate like a man

Oh how you tried
To cut me down to size
by telling dirty lies to my friends
But my own father
Said butch it up, don't bother
The world isn't coming to an end

He said skate like a man
Act like you’re straight
Skate like a man my son
No poster's worth
Crawling on the earth
So skate like a man my son

oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo
(Wop wop wop wop)
oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo

Fine eyed baby
I don't mean maybe
We're gonna get along somehow
Soon you'll be sighing
On 'count of all your prying
Oh yeah, just look who's laughing now

I'm gonna skate like a man
Fast as I can
Skate like a man for you
I'll show the world
Forget about it girl
And skate like a man for you

oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo
(Wop wop wop wop)
oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo
(Wop wop wop wop)
oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo
(Wop wop wop wop)
oo woo-oo-oo oo woo-oo-oo

:P

toddlj
01-30-2013, 09:59 PM
I'm gonna skate like a man
Fast as I can
Skate like a man for you
I'll show the world
Forget about it girl
And skate like a man for you

:P


"You must spread some Reputation around before giving it to Vagabond again."

Jayar
01-30-2013, 10:04 PM
No matter who won the title, someone would have been whining. The fact is, quad jumps are now getting the value that they deserve, and Max flat out out-jumped everyone. Was he graceful? No. But he has power and can rotate the jumps. He isn't a delicate competitor by any means, so he will likely be solid in competition so long as his technique is sound. He's young, and has plenty of time to develop the other pieces. Isn't it great, though, that Team USA has two men going to the World Championships who can do quads? And looking beyond 2014, we've got Farris, Dornbush, Johnson, Chen, Zhao, and Brown? We are in very good hands with this crop. Personally, I would think that Aaron and Miner will hang around as well, so we could have eight or nine guys who could be good enough to go to the 2018 Games. Exciting stuff!

MacMadame
01-30-2013, 10:10 PM
Okay- well then that doesn't do anything to explain the difference between the two days :)
You're leaving out how he skated. Skaters aren't robots that skate exactly the same from day to day. Aaron was really "on" for the LP and it was reflected in the PCS, as it should be.

The way some of you are talking, you'd think USFS sat in a back room and decided that Max Aaron was the future of US figure skating and so inexplicably gave him the win regardless of what happened on the ice when what actually happened is that we have a bunch of guys all with different strengths who are capable of scoring in a similar range and the ones with better basics and choreography (but lesser TES) didn't skate their best while Max did. What were the judges supposed to do? Pretend he didn't outskate the others that night because they are positive some other skater is going to somehow score better at Words?

That might work in some small country that has only 2 or 3 world class skaters and everyone knows who is usually better than whom. In that situation, it might make sense to say that one skater just had an uncharacteristic off night so you are going to send him to Worlds anyway over a skater who placed better that day. But that doesn't work in a country like the US where the field is so much deeper and it's not clear who is better than whom because it kind of depends on the night and the panel and their Fall results don't show a clear hierarchy.

In the case of the top three finishers at US Nationals, if you look at their Fall results, you have the following:

Aaron - two Senior Bs, scores from 143.67 -156.58
Miner - two SGPs, scores from 144.19 - 161.96, one Senior Bs, score 144.35
Abbott - two SGPs, scores from 133.64 - 146.45

That doesn't say to me that the judges were insane to send Aaron and Miner over Abbott. We also have Dornbush, Messing, Carriere, Rippon and Mahbanoozadeh scoring in that range during the Fall. So that's EIGHT skaters who could all be considered. Given that, USFS judges would have to be psychics to know who is going to outscore whom on any particular night. Since they aren't psychic, they might as well go by results at Nationals. It's the fairest to the athletes IMO.

As for Max, his program is designed to maximize the points and he delivers it with panache and he came through at Nationals, which is when it counts. That works for me. I'm glad he's going to Worlds.

gkelly
01-30-2013, 10:13 PM
I can see your point, although wouldn't falls in that case affect IN instead of CH (CH being really about the structure/ construction of the program whereas IN does include the notion of timing)?

I'd think it would have more of an effect on IN, but could have some effect on CH (i.e., not necessarily none).


It would actually be interesting to find out if there are any guidelines as to how much possible falls on technical elements should be allowed to influence IN or other components really

I'm not aware of any official guidelines to that effect.

We had mandatory fall deductions in ice dance since 1998 Worlds (increasing based on the amount of time it took the couple to resume the dance together), and in all disciplines since ~2005, although they're not huge in magnitude at the senior level.

There's no distinction there between falls on elements and falls between elements -- for PCS purposes I don't see any reason why there should be.

What kind of guidelines would be appropriate? Not all falls are equal in their disruptiveness, so it would probably be more fair to leave the effect on the scoring up to each judge's discretion rather than legislating penalties in advance. Something like a written encouragement to reward clean programs and to penalize falls or other disruptive errors, without dictating by how much, might make sense.

luenatic
01-30-2013, 10:18 PM
He's [Max's] young, and has plenty of time to develop the other pieces.

With the same coaching team? I shall bite my tongue.

rayhaneh
01-30-2013, 10:25 PM
I'd think it would have more of an effect on IN, but could have some effect on CH (i.e., not necessarily none).

I don't think it should have any influence at all on CH, but I'm not an ISU judge either :D


What kind of guidelines would be appropriate? Not all falls are equal in their disruptiveness, so it would probably be more fair to leave the effect on the scoring up to each judge's discretion rather than legislating penalties in advance. Something like a written encouragement to reward clean programs and to penalize falls or other disruptive errors, without dictating by how much, might make sense.

I wasn't thinking of having a strict penalty code, but rather larger guidelines about how much falls or mistakes (stepouts, turnouts, etc) should be allowed to influence scoring in PCs in proportion with other criteria. You're already penalizing the TES, plus the extra penalty for the fall, so I don't think it should be allowed to have much of an influence on CH and Skating Skills, and only some degree of influence in P/E and IN (in case the fall(s) is (are) disruptive enough). There could be a case made for influence on transitions since some could be omitted as a result of the fall as well, although again, I think falls are already penalized enough under the CoP

gkelly
01-30-2013, 10:33 PM
I think falls are already penalized enough under the CoP

So then you'd like to see guidelines advising judges not to let it affect the PCS, at least not the CH score.

And other fans have complained that all falls are disruptive by definition and multiple falls increasingly disruptive so there should be increasing penalties to make it less and less likely that even a superior skater could win the more times they fall.

So no rules will make everyone happy. Might as well just let the judges use their judgment.


BTW, back at the beginning of IJS ca. 2003-4, there was a guideline to reflect falls in the P/E score, I think specifically 1.0 per fall, but judges clearly weren't doing that consistently, so the ISU instituted the fall deduction instead.

rayhaneh
01-30-2013, 10:50 PM
So then you'd like to see guidelines advising judges not to let it affect the PCS, at least not the CH score.

And other fans have complained that all falls are disruptive by definition and multiple falls increasingly disruptive so there should be increasing penalties to make it less and less likely that even a superior skater could win the more times they fall.

Actually I thought I had deleted that last sentence, sorry about that (I will leavet it now or your post would make no sense otherwise ;))

I mentionned three out of 5 components which I thought could be impacted to some extent, so that's not exactly as if I was dismissing any impact on PCs altogether ;) Just that falls never are relevant towards all the criteria of any component, so it can't have a major impact on any component

Anyhoo, in order not to perpetuate that discussion on this thread which is probably not very appropriate :lol: I'll just add this: I find the way PCs are attributed in general very frustrating because I think they are often subject to very lazy judging, with not enough effort to distinguish between the various components (you can have a great choreography but average skating skills, for instance, but marks rarely reflect such variations of one skater's skills and rather tend to be fairly close to the median) and of course strange marking altogether. Max Aaron's PCs are one recent obvious example, but that's certainly not the only one, nor is it only a problem at US Nats. Which is why it seems to me that "letting the judges use their judgment" is not currently working. Does that mean more specific guidelines? Or just better education of judges? or less politics? Those are all open questions

Iceman
01-30-2013, 10:51 PM
Jeremy Abbott has broken his back, too. Ain't no excuse to slouch. :P

He has a compressed disk. I have never heard he had a broken back and I went back and read his bio and only the compressed disk was mentioned.

mgobluegirl
01-30-2013, 11:00 PM
With the same coaching team? I shall bite my tongue.

I honestly think that Tom Z should function solely as a jump specialist. He can clearly teach skaters to jump well and consistently, with good technique, and to give credit where credit is due, a lot of those top guys at US nationals learned their jumps from him. He just shouldn't be driving the coaching team, and shouldn't be allowed anywhere near choreography and general packaging of a skater.

Free Max Aaron!

Iceman
01-30-2013, 11:05 PM
Jeremy Abbott has broken his back, too. Ain't no excuse to slouch. :P

He has a compressed disk. I have never heard he had a broken back and I went back and read his bio and only the compressed disk was mentioned.