View Full Version : U.S. Men 2012-13 news, updates & general discussion

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01-31-2013, 07:27 PM
No 3lz-1/2lo-3lo is a jump sequence, so he could still do a 3-jump combo. 3f-1/2lo-3s counts as a 3 jump combo because the free leg doesn't touch the ice between the 3 jumps. For the 3lz-1/2lo-3lo, the free leg comes down to take off for the 3lo so it gets counted as a sequence, gets 80% of BV, and does not count as a 3 jump combo. I was more thinking the 3f-1/2lo-3s as a combo anyways, because it would really only alter the last two jumping passes, and the 3 jump combo that's a 3-3 seems to be popular for the men as of late and brings in a lot of points if done well. In this video from summer 2011, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdynmH7vpRc he does a 3f-1/2lo-3lo sequence at 02:18, which is why I suggested the 3lz-1/2lo-3lo sequence as a possibility because he has tried it in the past (and it actually looked decent there even with the stepout, and his jumps have improved a whole lot since then). He doesn't really need to change his layout anyways, it's just more if he's really trying to get higher onto the US Nationals podium next season or win JW this season with Kovtun and Yan having huge quads (and may even try 2 in the FS) and comparable PCS, tweaking a jump layout is a good way to get more points without having to obtain a brand new skill or rely so heavily on the execution of a certain difficult element.


01-31-2013, 07:45 PM
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.
The fall deduction was changed from relying on the judges to deduct from P/E to a formal deduction applied by the tech panel in the second season; the fall deduction appears in the 2004 SA protocols. Aside from enforcement, the change made the minimum fall penalty absolute across disciplines and segments, whereas, had the P/E deduction been applied consistently, it would have been factored differently, depending on the discipline (1 for Men's SP vs 2 for Men's FS, vs. .8 for Ladies and Pairs SP vs. 1.6 for Ladies and Pairs FS, etc.). It also meant that it could also be deducted from other components, whether or not that was applicable to the billet points, but that was the case when it was a P/E deduction.

ETA: Based on the Technical Rules definitions of jump combinations and sequences, by definition, a series of jumps connected by .5 loop is considered a combination, where the .5 loop counts as a 1Lo and the third jump. Jump sequences are defined as having hops and other steps between the jumps, but the .5 loop no longer counts as a sequence connector.

01-31-2013, 08:34 PM
the change made the minimum fall penalty absolute across disciplines and segments,

I've always found this strange. Relatively, a fall hurts a ladies score much more so than a man's, and the penalty for low level skaters falling is much higher than when skaters fall in high level competition (1 point off a quad- no big deal, 1 point off a single loop- huge deal; low level skaters have to skate clean, seniors- eh).

02-01-2013, 08:33 AM
Jonathan Cassar‏@Jonnaye05

Omaha was a great trip. No better way to spend my 10th Championships, my #swansong. Thank you to all those who have shared in this journey.

Is Jonathan leaving the competitions? :(

02-01-2013, 01:42 PM
Sounds like it. What a pity. :(

02-01-2013, 01:58 PM
With his placement at Nationals, does anyone think Alex Johnson will get some international assignments next season?

Where did he come from? He's definitely not a splashy skater, but his LP was very elegant. I'm a sucker for anyone with good forward camel spins, and AJ has one of the better ones among the men.

02-01-2013, 02:07 PM
Where did he come from? He's definitely not a splashy skater, but his LP was very elegant. I'm a sucker for anyone with good forward camel spins, and AJ has one of the better ones among the men.
I mentioned earlier in this thread that Alex Johnson's 7th place finish should give him a Senior B international at least (his most recent and only senior international to date was 2009 Finlandia Trophy where he placed 10th). Johnson's bio on IN: http://web.icenetwork.com/skaters/detail.jsp?id=100072&mode=I
He did well nationally and internationally as a junior, and has persevered despite his low placement at the past 3 Senior Nationals. He's originally from Minnesota, moved to Colorado Springs to be coached by Tom Zakrajsek, and now is coached by his choreographer, Tom Dickson.

02-01-2013, 03:50 PM
Is Jonathan leaving the competitions? :(
Just read the tweet.
Wonder what Jonathan chooses to do next. Dancing, choreo, smth. completely different?
I'll really miss him. One of the joys of last years was to see what programs Cassar came up with. He has such exquisite detail and line. If he stops skating in public, it'll be sad news for me.

02-01-2013, 10:19 PM
This Omaha Nationals wrap-up article opens with Max Aaron and ends with "Rippon likes training 'up the mountain'"): http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20130201&content_id=41323082&vkey=ice_news

02-02-2013, 08:29 AM
^^ Thanks Sylvia. I just saw that article. I'm glad Adam is enjoying working with Rafael, and that their work together has been so productive. It will be great if Adam gets the quads in his repertoire for next season -- he seems to feel that he's right there with gaining confidence on them. Certainly, his 3-axel is looking great. I'm glad Adam will have the chance to compete at 4CCs this year, so his season is not over quite yet. :) I think Adam did a wonderful job at Nats and he may have been given more credit if, 1) he'd landed the second of his 3/3 combos in the sp; and 2) if he'd had a better GP showing this season -- but since he got a late start re adjusting to a new training environment, I'm just glad he turned things around so well by Nationals. It will be great if Adam is becoming consistent with the quad and can "bring it" next year along with his perfected 3-axel and his superlative artistry.

Speaking of artistry, I wish Tom Z or the article writer or whoever would stop with trying to overplay the big "A" in connection with Max. Artistry is not a specialty of Tom Z's, and it's quite obvious that Max still needs to work on that aspect of his skating, so it is a bit silly for Tom Z to state that "Max and Patrick approach [the sport] in an artistic way and also a sporting way." :confused: Seriously? I do think it's wonderful that Max and Patrick are friendly and that Patrick has been helpful to Max (altho' it's easier to be helpful when you're being helpful to someone who is not a fierce rival). Max already noted in the press conference that he talks a lot to Patrick, and its fine to see that mentioned again since the article is based partly on the press conference, but I think the Patrick connection is being overplayed way too much. And, I thought Tom Z's statement: "Max is kind of a European-style men's skater..." to be very odd and historically a strange reference, since North American style skating has traditionally been considered more athletic. Has a flip-flop occurred in terms of styles? I don't think so, not just because of the quad. The sport is more global today and so for a variety of reasons there is no longer just one particular style of skating exclusively associated with certain countries or regions, IMHO.

Ultimately, Max will be judged on his own raw talent and performances, not on his association with Patrick Chan. BTW, Tom Z saying: "They talk about ESPN..." is so laughable. I mean fine, if they both follow baseball or football, or "he-man" sports and like to check out ESPN. :P But, pardon me, the way Tom Z threw out that reference makes it sound like code speak for, "They're so macho."

Putting that aside, I do disagree with most of the negative criticism of Max in this thread post-Nationals. While Max is not one of my favorite skaters, I am impressed with his improvement this season, and I enjoyed watching both of his programs. He may have been slightly under-marked in the sp, and a bit over-marked in his fp, so I guess it evens out somewhat. I would have been thrilled to see Jeremy or Ross win. Or even Ricky or Adam if they were both at full strength. However, I can definitely accept seeing Max edge it out. Before the competition began, I would never have imagined feeling that way. Kudos to Max! Go Jet!

Ross might have won had he not been slightly downgraded on his quad in the sp, and had he not popped his second 3-axel in the fp. Jeremy could also have won perhaps had he focused on going clean, although it was a tough call re whether to go for the quad. In any case, even with falling on it, had Jeremy went clean the rest of the way, he had the opportunity to pull out a win. So it is what it is, and I see more positives than negatives re U.S. men. Wishing Ross and Max both all the best at 4CCs and Worlds.

In order to be competitive in this changed environment of men's figure skating, quads are necessary. Ideally, top-notch artistry might eventually become equally important if there ever comes a day when a man who sports consistent quads can also deliver a beautiful, nuanced wonderfully choreographed performance in the manner of Alexander Johnson, and move across the ice in a way that comes close to approaching the masterful artistry of Jeremy Abbott.

Hanyu is wonderful but he lacks artistic maturity and endurance (altho' Orser is helping him with the latter). When Patrick is on he's great, but he is not known to always be technically consistent especially early in the season. It is nice to see Patrick focusing on further developing his artistic side this season. Dai has charisma and technical skills to die for, and he's wonderful to watch, but he's not always consistent on the quad either. Javi Fernandez is stepping it up now with 3 quads in his fp, but he still needs to work on his presentation skills, as well as consistency. It was clever of Orser to give Javi the Chaplin fp in order for Javi to practice projecting more to the audience.

02-02-2013, 08:44 AM
Is Jonathan leaving the competitions? :(

I wish him well.

02-02-2013, 08:56 AM
^^ Yes, I will miss seeing Jonathan Cassar at Nationals. I really hope he will have the opportunity to skate in some shows and professional competitions!

There is a tribute thread for Jonathan that was started in The Skip.

02-02-2013, 05:19 PM
I wonder, is there anything that the U.S. men are doing (especially those who are training the quad) to try and avoid injuries (e.g., proper stretching and warming up; regular physical therapy/ massage and orthopedic check-ups to try and monitor and/or prevent possible injuries? Or, is there any real way to monitor this? Is it just a matter of training smart, and also having a strategy in practices and in competition to avoid doing too many quads over a short period of time?

02-02-2013, 05:50 PM
I think off-ice training helps strengthen the body a lot to try and prevent overuse injuries. This has become true of most sports in recent years just as they get more and more demanding. Stretching, lifting weights, core strengthening and flexibility exercises, thorough warm-ups and cool-downs, along with PT if said skater is fighting off an injury, can all make a big difference and make the body much less prone to injury.

I don't know anything about landing quadruple jumps, but even just as a recreational runner, taking the time to stretch before and after running, doing some weight training, and knowing what/when to eat to help your body recover quickly and effectively makes a big, big difference in terms of keeping serious injuries at bay, and even the nagging aches and pains to specific joints/body parts. I would assume most skaters at this level have a very wholistic approach to their training - IE they don't just skate and skate throwing quads left and right until they get it consistent.

02-02-2013, 06:13 PM
Re-posting this March 2012 article in which several U.S. men (including Aaron, Miner, Carriere, Razzano, Alex Johnson) discuss the challenges of training the quad: http://web.icenetwork.com/news/article.jsp?ymd=20120320&content_id=27433896&vkey=ice_news