Best ice dance team in history

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by usova94gold, Jul 16, 2013.

  1. The Accordion

    The Accordion Well-Known Member

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    I always find these polls informative, somewhat entertaining and a bit ridiculous the way people are so adamant that their choice is right and that anyone who says otherwise is uneducated, biased, or they haven't seen the skaters THEY are sure Re the only answer.

    The issue for me is that on top of being a great deal about taste and preference, the word best is too vague. When there is no criteria different posters will use their own based on their own ideas and, therefore come up with very different answers.

    Still - it is interesting.

    What I most love about it though is being reminded of all these unbelievable skaters and going back and watching their programs.
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  2. kuzytalent

    kuzytalent Member

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    Wow I had no idea Grischuk & Platov were so little valued in skating history despite their achievements. Can anyone shed some light on why this is. Is it:

    1. their wins are considered controversial or not all deserved.
    2. people believe they dominated a weak era apart from the 94 Olympics where they won over tough competition.
    3. their wins were deserved but they just didnt bring anything revolutionary enough to the sport, make enough of a difference, or they just werent as enjoyable.

    I didnt think they would win a poll like this but they even have less votes than Davis & White and about 20% the votes of the top 3 dance teams in history. I wouldnt have even thought Virtue & Moir and Klimova & Ponomarenko would be considered over them in history neccessarily even, let alone way ahead.
  3. sequins

    sequins New Member

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    If I may I will give it a go. From my perspective, and first off I will say I despised them when they competed but time has made me appreciate them. I would go with a little bit of #1 and the fact that at the time they competed there was a lot of scandal and judging controversy. It was the beginning of the end of the 6.0 system. Grischuk was just not a likable person and the stunts they pulled, the nasty comments about ohter teams etc. etc. were all a turn off. While I've some what gotten past it I can see how others can not, but to be behind D/W in voting is a bit :confused:, but then again maybe not;)
  4. Cherub721

    Cherub721 YEAH!

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    I think it's Grishuk's personality that turns a lot of people off. Now I kind of wish I had voted for G&P (my all time favorite dance team). To have less votes than D&W is really ridiculous. P&G (6 time world champions!) are rated too low as well, with only 3 votes, but that's more understandable since their body of work is hardly on youtube.

    Even if V&M were to win next year, G&P would still have more world titles and IMO would still be the most decorated.

    Except the ones from 1994, I guess. That might lead people to believe U&Z or G&P were better.
  5. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    T&D's Starlight Waltz in Lillehammer was quite ordinary and should have placed 4th or 5th but since they were T&D were placed 3rd. Their Blues was quite good and a bit undermarked IMO. Still I dont think you can judge a team who has been out of amateur competition for 10 years and only practiced compulsories again for like 3 months doing compulsories. Compulsories take tons of practice and repetition. It would have been embarassing for World class Champions like U&Z and G&P to not be better at compulsories at that point.
  6. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    There's just something about them that prevents me from loving them. I don't know what it is. I wanted to say that their programs weren't that good, but I look back and I actually liked their 1994-1995 OD and FD. I thought their Paso Doble was good, their Libertango was a masterpiece and their Peter Gabriel was probably their best FD ever. I even thought they should have won the bronze above the Duschenays in 1992. However, their 1998 routines were underwhelming. I know Memorial is considered to be classic in many circles but I thought it was sort of reductive and was like a stereotypical Tarasova DRAMATIKKK routine even if overall I did enjoy that routine. I thought their OD was god-awful that year though.

    Maybe I just think their routines were good enough to win gold, but for the most part, they just weren't memorable outside a few exceptions.

    I also think their look just didn't appeal to me. I know it's petty, but they seemed mismatched and didn't have the most appealing line. I also thought her skinny legs were distracting. However, when I saw her pro routine with Zhulin, I just thought they were perfect together. I know she and Platov had incredible success together and brought in a new era of speed and athleticism to Ice Dance, but watching her and Zhulin made me wish they would have gotten together in amateur skating and see what sort of steamy/hot routines they would have came up with. They seemed much more complimentary to me, and both were capable of more difficulty than what their partners provided.

    Oh well, we have Anissina/Peizerat for the steamy stuff and Klimova/Ponomarenko for the perfect unison and connection, and Torvil/Dean (and Duschenays) for the creativity. Maybe Grishuk/Platov suffered a bit from coming in dominance at a time where the rules were much more restrictive and traditional compared to the two quads before them. However, I also think they came into prominence during the best time period for Original Dances. I still prefer the Original Step Pattern, but I do think the SD/OD should just have one rhythm throughout. 2:40+/- just isn't enough time to have two rhythms with a drastic change of tempo to have a great impact for me, other than say Anissina/Peizerat's 2002 OD among other examples.
    Last edited: Jul 19, 2013
  7. overedge

    overedge Well-Known Member

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    Um, they were practicing compulsories for that competition for quite a bit longer than that. And during their retirement prior to reinstatement, they were giving seminars to other skaters on how to do compulsory dances.
  8. Cherub721

    Cherub721 YEAH!

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    Thanks for sharing your perspective. As a huge G&P fan, it is nice to talk to somebody who does not necessarily consider them a favorite but at least the reasons have nothing to do with personal or politikal issues.

    It's such a YMMV situation because 1998 is one of my favorite G&P seasons, along with 1992, 1993, and 1997. TFB used to be my favorite, but now I think it's awfully empty, and Memorial is a good mix of that newfound drama, the complex transitions and use of levels in their 92 FD, and their increased speed and power after 94.

    But how many truly memorable programs does any great team really have? To be honest, I only like a very small handful of T&D and K&P's competitive programs (T&D's paso and Bolero, and K&P's Air plus their waltz, charleston, and blues OSP/ODs). This says nothing about their quality of skating and everything about my subjective taste. I am not taking away from their technical skills or innovation while competing, and I love the pro work of both teams. IMO, a team like the Duschenays, while less skilled, had many more memorable programs.

    I promise, I am not trying to convince anyone to vote for G&P, just offering my thoughts. I think G&P's versatility is underrated. They definitely performed a variety of different dances in their FDs, and IMO, they were all done well (though YMMV). Other teams tended to have a distinctive style, usually something dramatic or romantic, or in T&D's case more Broadway/Fred & Ginger stuff (except for Bolero). For example, I love A&P's 98-02 FDs, I would call most of them masterpieces, but they were definitely drawing on a certain aesthetic that worked for them: dramatic music, voidy themes, bold colors, use of the reverse lift. They found that formula and they stuck to it, so of course they made some really great programs in that style. I consider them innovative within their style, but all of their successful programs were within that genre. K&P had their traditional dances until 1991, V&M had their first love FDs before they started experimenting, etc.

    In G&P's case, they never stuck to one thing for long. The G&P of 1994 and 1998 really are like two completely different teams, and that's rare in ice dance, IMO. I find that fascinating. They did have what is considered a lull from 94-96 but they had really interesting stuff before and after. I think the argument for them cuts both ways: by varying their style every other year or so, they never really developed an identifiable signature style where they're undeniably the best; but they also deserve some credit for changing it up yet still having the skating skills to maintain wins even when their programs were not considered classic and for being creative enough to pull off all those styles. When I watch them I see a little T&D, a little B&B, a little A&P, etc.

    I don't think that's petty; line is important. I agree her thinness is 94-96 was distracting, fair or not. Their lines are probably the one thing which makes it hard for me to call them the best team of all time technically. Don't get me wrong, their lines were very good, but not when compared to other all time greats. I just prefer watching a team like K&P or V&M who execute everything so beautifully (and who share the stable edging of G&P).

    Yes! I don't know what she could've done technically with an aging Zhulin, but she really matured after 1998. On a purely aesthetic level she looked great... she had softened up a lot, she had a more womanly figure, her hairstyle was not as severe. Her skating also seemed a lot more elegant, the movements and lifts flowed into each other better, and yes the chemistry was there. This is impressive because he was already coaching IIRC and she was apparently living in Hollywood. I know he complained that she wasn't that committed to training and was flying back and forth... so wow. That was them phoning it in. Imagine what they could've done with more time and with medals on the line.

    Agreed. Unlike you, I didn't care much for the OSP, and I really don't care for straightline step sequences (wtf does it have to do with dancing?), so that era was just great for ODs. One rhythm with time and freedom to really express it, and G&P did that very well. Also keep in mind that back then, it was more or less expected you skated to something like Espani Cani. It was really rare to experiment in the OD. You couldn't even use vocals. It's not like today where the dancers can use cirque du soleil for a waltz and stuff, and some degree of voidiness and boundary-pushing is accepted.

    This is FSU blasphemy but I've come to realize I don't always hate multi-rhythm ODs. I think it works for Latin, because watching 20 rhumbas on ice in a row is just torturous; most ice dancers can't do Latin anyway, so the fast/slow/fast method most teams use keeps it fresh. Foxtrot and quickstep go together pretty well too (with a few opting for Charleston), and the mix is better than hearing Sing Sing Sing for every routine. Tango works really well either as part of the Spanish lineup in 2002 or on its own in 2007. So I favor mixing it up with some years being combinations and some years being all one dance.

    The 2011 SD was a total WTF though. Waltz plus waltz, foxtrot, quickstep, or tango? Erm... no. There needs to be some rhythmic or thematic reason for putting them together. I hated those SDs that were like "here's our compulsory pattern, waltz la la la, big pause, AND NOW WE TANGO!" Like I&K's SD. Even on the rare occasion it was actually a good waltz plus a good tango, the combination was jarring. I thought V&M were the only ones to make those two dances flow seamlessly, and Paul & Islam had a very interesting concept but not enough experience to pull it off. Otherwise, I liked the waltz-only dances, and I like that the ISU let them choose that option.

    I came to accept the multi-rhythm ODs because routines on DWTS and SYTYCD are shorter than ODs and the good ones to manage to capture the feeling of a dance in 90 seconds just fine. Plus in a ballroom competition they generally just do all 5 standard or Latin dances in a row with all couples on the floor. It also harkens back to the old days of ice dance when teams were actually supposed to show mastery of several different rhythms in one FD. I think the reason that the ice dancers struggle sometimes has more do with some dances being difficult to translate on ice and mainly the inclusion of the technical elements. And these days, the judges are not really comparing how well they dance each dance, but how well they perform elements.
  9. nuge

    nuge Well-Known Member

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    Can't wait to see A/P SD then after twelve years away :p:eek: Did they ever do the Finnstep ?
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  10. DORISPULASKI

    DORISPULASKI Watching submarine races

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    No, unless as coaches.
  11. Proustable

    Proustable New Member

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    Two thoughts

    a) Now tends to out-perform then as a rule. That two of the top three dancers haven't compete in ~20 years actually speaks to their brilliance even more strongly. But you've got only two dancers from the last ten years on this poll (compare that to the previous ten, which have five representatives) as well. So those newer fans simply have fewer selections (of course, ideally, those newer fans went back and youtubed the hell out of the earlier dancers, but they still feel fonder of the dancers now - that's how I feel about V/M vs K/P, for example.)

    b) I think G/P were ill-served by English language commentators, based specifically on youtube clips anyway. Those that didn't really know ice dancing never conveyed just what made them amazing (Sandra Bezic actually managed to a couple times) - the difficulty of what they were doing. Those that did (coughTracyWilsoncough) undersold them for reasons unknown.
  12. Shyjosie

    Shyjosie New Member

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    I can identify with these thoughts, Proustable, quite well and couldn't have put it better.
    The question of the poll is who is the best team in history, which should consider teams of all ears, but of course, the ones from years ago have (maybe) a long history of their own to look back on - in case they continued perfoming as pros like T/D, and people are free to include these appearances into their vote or just focus on the competitive carreer of the respactive teams.

    Everyone's views are biased, firsty as you say by the very likely preference for your contemporary teams, secondly by the impression you have of the personalities of the skaters, although they shouldn't influence how to judge the quality of their skating (but the longer a skater is in the eye of the public, the more people know about them and can appreciate what they come to know or not). What you say about the commentators on G/P is telling: the more extravert a person is (Grichuk in this case), the more they are subject to judgement that may influence everyone's view on them regardless of their skating. She wasn't by far the only one in skating to experience that.

    In the end, very few people are able to exclude their own likes and dislikes in favour of a very technical approach to the skating, as to evaluate the "best", in terms of skating, and skating alone. It takes also a great deal of knowledge of the technical side of skating and maybe even of the way a routine is created to judge this.
  13. Japanfan

    Japanfan Well-Known Member

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    Well, we have to see how they skate.

    I do think V&M are one of greats, though voted for K&P. But I wonder if politicking will give the next Olympic title to D&W, just as it may have set V&M up for gold in 2010 (don't get me wrong, both teams are great). I was really confused when D&W lost to V&M in 2012 as I thought their LP was a masterpiece. Last season I thought the judges sent a clear message that D&W were on the rise. V&M didn't skate their best at Worlds and I fear her injury may still be an issue. But it wasn't clear to me that D&W had improved since 2012.

    I do hope V&M go back to classical, which they do best IMO. Although their performance of Carmen was memorable, there was just something about that program that didn't click. And Funny Face - I didn't get it.
  14. Sasha'sSpins

    Sasha'sSpins Well-Known Member

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    I chose Klimova and Ponomarenko. I love Torvill & Dean's Bolero but for me K&P's Olympic FD as well as Usova & Zhulin's fpr that matter were on another level by 1992.
  15. parapluies

    parapluies Well-Known Member

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    Yeah I doubt that happened. As evidenced by 2013 worlds, hometown advantage does not exist for V/M ;) And V/M were absolutely perfect in Vancouver they earned their title 100%
  16. Japanfan

    Japanfan Well-Known Member

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    While I agree with you and thought they were brilliant, I also think that politics does play a role. IMO political maneuvering often does support skaters who are the best, but there are too many questionable results (under the new system, as well as the old) to discount the factor of politics.
  17. chantilly

    chantilly Active Member

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    I find it way too hard and frankly unfair to rank teams before COP and post COP.

    They were not even remotely being demanded of in the same way.

    T and D were trendsetters.

    K and P were gorgeous to watch.

    IMO G and P were over-rated and A and P were good but I didn't like them as much as the Duschenays.

    In the modern era no one holds a candle to V and M. D and W come close. But not close enough. To me V and M have the best of the old style of dance; emotion, passion, line, extension and connection and the best of COP, edges, difficulty, fluidity and speed that is clean and not frantic.

    I would love a Christopher Dean choreographed piece for V and M. But it ain't going to happen.
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  18. SkateBlades17

    SkateBlades17 New Member

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  19. wristflick

    wristflick New Member

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    How can Anissina & Peizerat have less votes than Davis & White? Davis & White are so overrated.
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  20. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    My answer, as well.
    The accomplishments of the others would not have been possible without the skill and innovations of Torvill and Dean.

    I'd like to add that the creativity and continuing "pushing of the envelope" in their Professional programs allowed the skaters who followed them to do the same.
    Torvill and Dean's influence has continued up to the present.
    Few skaters have, or will, equal that in the years to come
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2013
  21. kwanoverrated

    kwanoverrated Member

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    If all skated in their primes vs each other the results would be:

    1. Virtue & Moir- too much difficulty and beauty for others to match.
    2. Torvill & Dean
    3. Gritschuk & Platov
    4. Klimova & Ponomarenko- I love them but they always lost head to head to Torvill & Dean and even had trouble beating weak Douchesays team.
    5. Anissina & Peizerat- I want to put them higher but technical abilities are weaker than those other 4.

    I still pick Klimova & Sergei since I just enjoy watching them most of all.
  22. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

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    Klimova & Ponomarenko were much younger and just coming up when they were going head to head with Torvill and Dean so you can't really go by that.
  23. Fancypancy

    Fancypancy New Member

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    Pure Jealousy .. G/P have 2 gold medals .. But fans being
    Fans of other skaters .. Never give them the recognition they deserve.
    Plus they were so great.. No one even today can come close.
  24. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    K&P were way down the ladder in terms of seniority when T&D were on top. Next in line were B&B. No way inexperienced K&P would have beaten T&D while the latter were on top. Things like that did not happen in ice dance those days, even if K&P had been at T&D's level (they were not, in 1984 and earlier).

    K&P lost to Duschenays just once, and that was when they were distracted by Marina failing the drug test after the 91 Euros. The second lab test came out clean, so they were allowed to compete at the 92 worlds. However, it cost them 2 weeks of practice time, and the conflict with their coach (Dubova) was a big distraction when the 92 worlds came around. Your statement comes across as they were so weak that they could not even beat the Duschenays multiple times.
  25. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    And their losses were more political. I'm sure if COP was implemented at the time K/P were developing (after B/B developed), we could have seen K/P shoot up the rankings much faster the way V/M and D/W did in the 2007-2010 quad considering the under-appreciated difficulty K/P were putting forth. Combine that with Soviet-style ice dance training and musicality, I think K/P would have done quite well. Of course, other teams would have developed differently too, so we don't know if K/P could have been overtaken by a younger team.
  26. Cherub721

    Cherub721 YEAH!

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    K&P "always lost head to head" with T&D? From a review of wiki, they only ever skated head to head in the 1983-84 season, at Europeans, Worlds, and Olympics, and I hardly think a brand new team could be expected to beat Bolero. IMO Air stands up very well against Bolero, but who knows how the judges would've ranked them.

    I don't think it's a CoP thing because you can't shoot up much faster than winning Olympic bronze in your second year of ISU championships before you've even been to Worlds. K&P's issue wasn't that they didn't move up, it was that they were stuck behind one particular couple, B&B. That may have been a correct result or it may have been political, but CoP can be just as political. Then they were beaten by D&D once, at 1991 Worlds, not multiple times.

    It's hard to say how well K&P would've done under CoP because skills like posture, musicality, and dance ability are not always reflected in the PCS mark as they should be. The question would really come down to how K&P do at the types of elements measured by the CoP. I'd like to think they would do them really well because they're great skaters, but I guess we'll never know for sure. It can be argued that acrobatic lifts, dance spins, and even twizzles don't have a lot to do with actual edgework.
  27. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    It also depends on the code as well in terms of what elements would be scored highly and what role GOE plays. Although I do not believe COP has alleviated the political aspect of ice dance judging, I do think that it really opened doors for Virtue/Moir and Davis/White that was unprecedented in the discipline. I mean I know we've see meteoric rises before (K/P in 1984, but then they fell victim being the second ranked Soviet team and G/P in 1994...but the return of Torvil and Dean possibly played a part in that), but I do think COP has allowed much more mobility (up and down) that we haven't seen in ice dance previously.
  28. Cherub721

    Cherub721 YEAH!

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    I do think it's true that CoP has allowed more mobility because you can really take a hit for an off day. Under CoP, K&P might have been able to beat B&B a couple of times in the 85-88 quad, and also may have been beaten by U&Z here and there in 89-92.
  29. caseyedwards

    caseyedwards Well-Known Member

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    COP opened the doors for DW and VM and then right they went through all the judges closed the doors to anyone but them! No team in any GP event or the worlds or Olympics can even hope to beat VM or DW no matter what they do! No matter what elements get the levels! The judges have shut the doors!! D/W can have lifeless boring tango that gets 10's in PCS! V/M can do a program once and extremely sloppy and ridiculously and get 10's in PCS! It's totally the same! North American teams got in the door became the number ones and all the doors were closed!
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  30. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    Their problem is they never had a truly signature program though. That is needed to be considered for the best ever. No doubt they were excellent, technically very strong, probably the fastest team ever, and deserved most or all their titles (no matter how hard bitter cow Tracy Wilson tries to convince others otherwise). They still dont have the signature program(s) or the way they took ice dance in a new direction and left a huge mark other than just being the best team in the World for 5 years that would make many think of best ever labels for them though.
  31. Cherub721

    Cherub721 YEAH!

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    IMO Libertango and The Feeling Begins were signature programs for G&P. N&K and G&G were both accused of copying them when they used TFB.

    And I would argue that G&P's speed and mad twizzling in 1994 set the stage for modern ice dance. They made it a lot more athletic. Sadly, many of the later teams who have been known for speed did not have the basic technique that G&P did, so this style is often derided as "it's not just speed skating." But in G&P's case, it wasn't. It was technically brilliant, truly danced, great bladework skating.

    I have also said this before but I do feel that in lieu of a signature style, G&P had a lot more versatility than many great teams including the beloved K&P. They have done very North American/British style ballroom programs in addition to heavy dramatic Russian style stuff.
    ETA: In fact I just noticed I said it before on this very thread, but that post is over a month old and I forgot about it. :lol:
  32. Fancypancy

    Fancypancy New Member

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    Cherub 721 agree totally!!!:)))
  33. gingercrush

    gingercrush New Member

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  34. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    I still think K/P were capable of versatile rhythms and styles...at least they were capable of doing it better. However, I do think G/P were very versatile even if I don't think really think any of their programs were really masterpieces outside Libertango. Even if some of them were close, and I have personally enjoyed quite a few of them, I just don't know if any of their dances are signatures...but then this really depends on consensus and I really have no idea of what the consensus is. Plus, it's hard to know from my perspective since the North American media was heavily and unfairly critical of G/P.
  35. BittyBug

    BittyBug Quadless

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    I voted for Klimova and Ponomarenko because to me they had it all - superior technical skills, precision, breathtaking classical lines, creativity, and above all, passion.
  36. Fancypancy

    Fancypancy New Member

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    Gingercrush .. When you have success like G/P.
    their programs were all amazing .. Again,
    great success comes with the most Critics...but I also love that
    Program... Signature 4 sure!!!
  37. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    I disagree. 'Memorial', 'The feeling begins' and their 94 FD (for its creativity) were signature programs for them. If Tracy Wilson had not been so bitter while commentating in 98 (Oly), I think a lot of people would have come forward to say how great that program was. TFB at Euros (97) may still be their best performance but the music is overused, so TEB FD does not get the credit it deserves.
  38. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    They had everything an ice dance team should have.
  39. Vash01

    Vash01 Well-Known Member

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    That is true of #3 and down. The top 2 placements are locked. No matter what anyone does, those are reserved for V&M and D&W. I do like them but there is no mobility when it comes to the very top (1-2).
  40. kwanoverrated

    kwanoverrated Member

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    Amazing to see Pasha & Platov with fewer votes than Davis & White. They are really underrated on this poll. What a shame.