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View Full Version : Would Yamaguchi and Klimova & Ponomarenko have won 2nd Oly Gold if reinstated



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Ares
10-06-2012, 05:27 PM
I still think the drama would've been between Kerrigan and Harding. Presumably, if Yamaguchi reinstates (as opposed to competes for two more years) the USA still only has two spots (thanks to Kerrigan's meltdown in 1993) and it's between Kerrigan and Harding for the second spot at the Olympics.I don't really see Gillooly saying "Well Kristi is going to win anyway, let's leave her alone and go after our challenger for the silver medal."

Kristi would have been the target, especially since she arguably would have been considered a bigger threat than Nancy in Lillehammer.

briancoogaert
10-06-2012, 05:28 PM
It seems artistry mattered way more back in 1994 in Olympic ladies than it probably ever has in recent Olympiads. IMO, as eligibles, Baiul was more artistic than Yamaguchi and Kerrigan. Kristi didn't really blossom artistically until after her Olympic eligible career. The judges turned a blind eye to Oksana's numerous 2-foot landings and lack of combination jumps and combination spins. Kerrigan clearly surpassed her technically, but that was ultimately ignored, so I don't quite believe it would have been such a walk in the park for Kristi to win a 2nd consecutive gold medal, particularly given that she doubled a Salchow and fell on a 3loop in Albertville. Plus, Yama would not have had the sympathy story of being an orphan losing her parents at such a young age, coming from a poor upbringing, and competing injured as Oksana did due to her practice collision with Tanja Szewczenko.
Kristi was not a ballerina, but she had great artistry and very good presentation, better than Kerrigan. Her 1992 Blue Danube was so good !
Baiul's win was against Kerrigan. I don't have the feeling that judges wanted Baiul to win. They just wanted Kerrigan to not win, IMO. Remember that Baiul didn't even win Europeans (with a better performance than her Olympic LP !)
Against the current Olympic champion, strong technically and in presentation, I don't think judges would have hesitated !

Proustable
10-07-2012, 01:05 PM
I don't really see Gillooly saying "Well Kristi is going to win anyway, let's leave her alone and go after our challenger for the silver medal."

Kristi would have been the target, especially since she arguably would have been considered a bigger threat than Nancy in Lillehammer.

Maybe both would've been threats?

briancoogaert
10-07-2012, 01:19 PM
Maybe both would've been threats?
:yikes: Nooooooo !

In fact, maybe no one would have had this stupid idea, because Tonya would have thinked "anyway, I will never win, so, nevermind".

So, Tonya would have never been banned from figure skating.
Plus, if Kristi wins the Gold in Lillehammer. Oksana Baiul would not have retired so soon, with alcohol and other problems we know.

Kristi, why didn't you come back ?????? :P

VIETgrlTerifa
10-07-2012, 05:53 PM
I prefer this explanation to the : "G&P were bad".
G&P had the best Compulsories at the Olympics. And K&P were not that great at Compulsories.
I agree about the OD, and they probably would have finished in 4th.
I agree about their FD, but it was by far the most entertaining, and the most refreshing.
K&P's 1992 FD was fantastic, but the rules had changed. I don't know what would have been their FD in 1994, lol.

That's the first time I've heard anyone say something about K/P not being that good at compulsories. They always dominated that portion with the exception of 1991 Worlds where they made a mistake.

Also, don't forget K/P were masters of the ballroom style until they had to adapt to the ice dance landscape of the early 90s and so they ended up with more interpretive types of dances. Their difficulty is pretty evident in those dances not to mention their superior lines, unison, dance holds, lifts (I always thought lifts were G/P's weak spot in terms of fitting with their choreography and how they were set up and finished) and musicality. Of course the judges seemed to try to find any excuse to hold them back, so maybe some of the judges felt the way you do briancoogaert.

briancoogaert
10-07-2012, 06:53 PM
That's the first time I've heard anyone say something about K/P not being that good at compulsories. They always dominated that portion with the exception of 1991 Worlds where they made a mistake.

Also, don't forget K/P were masters of the ballroom style until they had to adapt to the ice dance landscape of the early 90s and so they ended up with more interpretive types of dances. Their difficulty is pretty evident in those dances not to mention their superior lines, unison, dance holds, lifts (I always thought lifts were G/P's weak spot in terms of fitting with their choreography and how they were set up and finished) and musicality. Of course the judges seemed to try to find any excuse to hold them back, so maybe some of the judges felt the way you do briancoogaert.
My opinion is that they were not as great as Bestemianova&Bukin in Compulsories. But they were the best of their quadrennial (1989-1992). But it's not that clear that they would have won compulsories in Lillehammer.
That's what I wanted to say. ;)

judgejudy27
10-07-2012, 07:54 PM
Well Usova & Zhulin won the first compulsory dance and lost the 2nd by only 1 judge. Klimova & Ponomarenko never had problem beating U&Z in compulsory dances, apart from the 91 Worlds where she stumbled. Also in general Usova & Zhulin were also skatnig far from peak form at the 94 Olympics.

I hadnt thought about that Yamaguchi might be attacked had she come back. I am not sure exactly how Harding or her team's minds works, but maybe they would have decided to attack Yamaguchi in that case (yikes). Then again maybe Kristi would have recovered and skated her best at the Olympics just like Nancy did in that case, and if she did might well have won. It seems unlikely if Yamaguchi were back that Harding and her team would decide to attack Kerrigan though. It makes no sense to plan an attack on someone who probably wouldnt have even been the U.S one to beat, and with Kerrigan's poor showing at the 93 Worlds I am pretty sure Kristi coming back would have been immediatedly marketed as their #1 skater again. So it would probably either be Yamaguchi or nobody.

briancoogaert
10-07-2012, 08:12 PM
I am not sure exactly how Harding or her team's minds works, but maybe they would have decided to attack Yamaguchi in that case (yikes).
Yes, and I don't know how it works either. Just the fact that they imagine this against Kerrigan is a non sense. USA had 2 spots, so Tonya would have been in the Olympic team, and Nancy Kerrigan, as you said, was 5th in the World, and didn't skate that well at the beginning of the season (including 1993 Pre-Olympics Pirruetten Trophy that she won). lol

judgejudy27
10-07-2012, 08:56 PM
It seems the thinking was Harding thought she only had a chance at a medal at the Olympics if she went in as National Champion and U.S #1, and if she had the USFSA support and behind the scenes backing as their #1. She and her team apparently came to the last straw after coming only 4th at NHK behind Bonaly, Chen, and Sato, even though she skated well. It was even reported she did a clean short and came 7th, and Bonaly and Chen fell in their shorts and came 3rd and 4th. I find that hard to believe, but it was backed by more than one source, I would have loved to have seen that event.

Proustable
10-07-2012, 10:55 PM
Sorry I brought it up. Neither pleasant to think about nor particularly logical.

blue_idealist
10-08-2012, 03:01 AM
I think they both would have since K&P were always placed ahead of G&P when they were competing. It was only after K&P retired that G&P/U&Z started to dominate. G&P weren't really in their prime yet at the '94 Olympics, either. Of course, it would have also depended on what programs they came up with, but barring a horrible program, I think K&P would have won.

As for Kristi, I think she could have won again even if she wasn't perfect because even when not at her best, I think she was better than Nancy or Oksana - and Oksana didn't skate totally clean in that competition, either. Of course, if Kristi had a major meltdown I don't think she would have won, but barring that, yeah.

leafygreens
10-08-2012, 03:03 AM
It's hard to believe that Kristi didn't want to do 94. She claims to have had her reasons, but she skated so well as a pro in 94 and would have likely medaled. I can understand skaters not wanting to stick out four years, but two - the only time this opportunity ever came in history - I just can't believe she didn't want to give it a shot.

It's unlikely that Gillooly's henchman would have been able to whack two skaters at nationals. So it would have been either Kristi or Nancy. If it was Kristi because she was the best skater, Tonya still would have ended up in 8th place at Olys. The stress of the incident really got to Tonya combined with all her mishaps and lack of conditioning. Nancy could not have skated any better than she did, even without a knee injury.

Alex Forrest
10-08-2012, 03:34 AM
Baiul's win was against Kerrigan. I don't have the feeling that judges wanted Baiul to win. They just wanted Kerrigan to not win, IMO. Remember that Baiul didn't even win Europeans (with a better performance than her Olympic LP !)
Against the current Olympic champion, strong technically and in presentation, I don't think judges would have hesitated !

I have to agree with this. It wasn't such a pro-Oksana vote as it was a NO WAY vote for Kerrigan.

Yamaguchi would clearly have been the front-runner, with her two lutzes, maybe one with a 3toe. She didn't need the sal either. Kristi, the way she skated throughout that season, would probably have won easily. No question.

Alex Forrest
10-08-2012, 03:45 AM
She and her team apparently came to the last straw after coming only 4th at NHK behind Bonaly, Chen, and Sato, even though she skated well. It was even reported she did a clean short and came 7th, and Bonaly and Chen fell in their shorts and came 3rd and 4th. I find that hard to believe, but it was backed by more than one source, I would have loved to have seen that event.

I'm sort of amazed that 1993 NHK has not shown up on YT. I would have LOVED to see this comp.

In a wildly different direction I think that if Yamaguchi reinstated, Tonya would have stepped up her training and tried to earn the national title. Instead she was up against Snow White and her faux-princessy BS that the USFS just seemed to love. I would suppose that if someone just felt that Nationals was just a pre-determined coronation, Tonya might have wanted to take Kerrigan out. If Yamaguchi was in it, and she had great skills, Tonya would trained harder and had better programs.

leafygreens
10-08-2012, 01:54 PM
Instead she was up against Snow White and her faux-princessy BS that the USFS just seemed to love.

Was this ever reality, or just some storyline made up by the media? Compared to Tonya, I guess Nancy was a princess? But Nancy didn't have the World's Most Graceful Skating.