OMG!!!WHY?

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by arakwafan2006, Dec 22, 2010.

  1. arakwafan2006

    arakwafan2006 Active Member

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    So I wanted to start a thread about skaters that you see their names or watch them skate and wonder one of a few things;Why are you still competing? Why are you doing this to yourself? Why wonÂ’t you retire?

    Here are two names that come to mind. Kevin Van Der Perren and Fumie Suguri.

    Fumie really is so past her prime. She had her best showing in Torino and it was not enough then to place her on the podium. Plus, i cannot recall her actually attempting a 3/3 combination much less landing one.

    Kevin was the man to watch when he first arrived on the scene and worked with Morozov but now its clear that even if he did do the jumps, this new system almost seems like it was designed with the idea of rewarding skaters who were his polar opposite. His skating skills actually look worse and his jumps are alluding him constantly.

    I'd like to hear what you guys think...
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  2. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    What a :drama: subject line for such a :yawn::blah: topic.

    Really, unless we're shelling out big bucks to support their training and not getting our money's worth in results, why should we care how long a skater continues to compete?
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  3. Allen

    Allen Glad to be back!

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    God forbid people do something they love doing for many years.
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  4. Jenna

    Jenna Well-Known Member

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    I agree that Suguri and Van Der Perren are well past their prime, but who are we to force them to stop? If they love to skate, good for them. I will continue to watch.
  5. julieann

    julieann Well-Known Member

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    It must be a very hard decision to stop skating, for most of those skaters, it's all they know. They already put in between 10-15 years if not more. Maybe they have more to prove to themselves and I don't think it's up to 'fans' to decide their fate just because 'some fans' are tired of seeing some skaters. Or want to see some skaters win and they can't because the field is too deep.
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  6. Kwantumleap

    Kwantumleap New Member

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  7. screech

    screech Well-Known Member

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    One that I thought should have ended sooner was Jennifer Robinson, but Skate Canada apparently convinced her to stick around because there were no ladies in contention. Same with Elvis Stojko who should

    But I also agree that it's hard to give up something that's been your life for years, if not decades, especially if it's not just a 'job' but something you love as well.
  8. igniculus

    igniculus Well-Known Member

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    I adore Kevin. I hope he'll continue as long as he wants to and as long as he still loves the sport! :cheer:
  9. Artifice

    Artifice Guest

    Maybe we can ask ourselves why don't these skaters retire but the answer is quite obvious : they stay because they want/like to compete. And it itself that's the best reason to stay.

    I believe there is no need to be getting lower and lower in the rankings to wonder wether it's time to retire. Some skaters appear to be close to the top, still show an impossibility to win. Some others are on top but don't feel like competing again and choose to do shows instead.

    It's not all about winning.

    For those who stay but appear to have passed their prime, it must be that there is something else in their motivation that keeps them doing competitions. And as long as they get spots it means that they are still at the right level even if they are not at their personal best.
    Some reasons to continue might be because the national skating organisation have asked them to do so, giving them financiel help, or because they just love competing, or because they manage to combine competitor life with professional or student life...

    What bothers me more is when I see skaters looking like they really force themselves to compete when it looks like they really don't like being out there competing. To me it appears like they want to prove something that doesn't belong to them, like pleasing people, showing their national federation they are still worthy... Here is when I ask what's the point of doing something that not only doesn't work in term of results but also doesn't bring any satisfaction to the skater.

    Overall no one has the right to say to someone he should stop competing, except if the skater asks you the specific question. It's a matter of respect.
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  10. MikiAndoFan#1

    MikiAndoFan#1 Well-Known Member

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    :blah:

    Exactly.
  11. Pavla2304

    Pavla2304 Active Member

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    WHY? Because they love skating;)
    I wish Fumie/Kevin and everyone else lots of happines and joy on and off the ice.
  12. paskatefan

    paskatefan Well-Known Member

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    :D :) :encore:
  13. briancoogaert

    briancoogaert Well-Known Member

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    I agree with you, but judges can send them a message to stop, and I have the feeling they already sent them one ! lol
  14. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

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    If it's the case, as with Kevin van der Perren, that he's still one of the top skaters in his home country and in the world, then why not keep skating if he wants to and can get the funding to do so? He won his national championships this year, and he won the bronze at Europeans in 2009 - not ancient history. He also placed top 10 at the last World Championships, nearly matching his career high placement there - and this was a comp in which he landed a quad toe loop-triple toe loop-triple toe loop combo; which had never been done before in competition by anyone.

    Has *this* season been his best? No. But he still wins his nationals, and he placed top 10 at the last Worlds. So while he may be past *his* prime, he's still better than the majority of male skaters out there. Many skaters would love to have such results. So if the man doesn't want to retire, so be it. And if he does want to retire, he should look back and be quite happy with what he's been able to do with his career.
  15. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

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    Well, regardless of whether or not if it is their right to skate is not the issue here. I don't see anything wrong with arakawafan2006 asking about it. And I don't think it's a dull topic. Kevin and Fumie certainly do have the right to skate until they are 50 years old. After all, it worked for Julia Sebestyen :D.

    Personally, I think both of them SHOULD retire. Neither one of them are interesting to watch any longer and the younger skaters are nipping at their heels and their skating IMO isn't exactly COP-friendly. YMMV.

    But I also agree that it is totally their choice to remain eligible if their respective federations are supportive of them.
  16. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

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    Amen!
    No one should ever be "forced" to retire.

    You don't have to follow/watch them if you feel that way.
  17. numbers123

    numbers123 Well-Known Member

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    If the skaters we think are past their prime, which is :rolleyes: anyway, continue to be in the top contenders of the world/their nation then why should we push them into retirement. Family members might be consulted, but not the fans regarding retirement.
  18. El Rey

    El Rey Well-Known Member

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    They may be past their prime, but they're still among the elite skaters in the world.
  19. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

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    Having some older skaters in the singles' ranks could potentially make things more interesting...the youth movement is rather strong in that discipline. Pairs and ice dance - you can stick around a while longer and no one raises an eyebrow. And I guess there are a thousand and one reasons for this.
  20. Frau Muller

    Frau Muller President of Dick Button Appreciation Club

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    KVDP is still quite strong. No qualms there.

    In general terms, Fumie and others who might be "past their prime" have a right to appear in major ISU events if they are named by their federations. In most cases, this is linked to rankings in that country's prior Nationals...so if we see too much of Fumie, for example, we have only the Japanese Federation to blame. If Fumie fails to make 'top 10' at Japanese Nationals next week but is still named to next season's Grand Prix events, then that would be bad.

    Nowadays, to be an 'amateur' is to be a 'pro' so it's not as if there is a life in 'pro skating' after an Olympics (with the exception of making 'tenure' in a show like SOI). They have to make a living and can do so if they maintain their techniques.
  21. Allen

    Allen Glad to be back!

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    Agreed. I really don't get how KVDP is past his prime. He landed a 4-3-3 combo at the 2010 World Championships. If anything is holding him back, it's his presentation in my opinion.
  22. Simone411

    Simone411 aka IceSkate98

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    I've seen competitors of other sports hang in there for years because they love the sport and only retired because of a physical condition. Larry Byrd played for the Boston Celtics from 1978 until 1992 when he only retired because of back problems.

    If Fumie and Kevin are able to compete, then they should until they get ready to retire. They love the sport and there's nothing wrong with it. Period.
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  23. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

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    It doesn't matter that KVP can land 4-3-3 until the cows come home. He's not moving up the rankings and is being beaten soundly by the up and comers, because he never bothered to work on his non-jump elements like spins, speed, flow, edging, footwork, musicality, etc. I thought he was very charismatic when I saw him live during practices at the 2003 World, but his skating had stayed at exactly one level since then.

    I thought Kevin had trouble finding funding even when he was seen as inching toward the top of the European men skating. I can't imagine it's much easier for him now to finance his skating.
  24. AxelAnnie

    AxelAnnie Well-Known Member

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    When one says Fumie is past her prime............when was her prime? Doesn't she skate about like she always did. Don't get me wrong....I don't mean that as a dig, but has she lost skills?

    I wonder what goals she has? What motivates her. What is she reaching for?
  25. aliceanne

    aliceanne Well-Known Member

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    I think it is interesting that an Arakawa fan would initiate this topic. Shizuka was considered over-the-hill by many, but managed to come back and win World and Olympic gold after many lackluster seasons.

    According the commentators Van der Perrin was asked by his federation to compete this season.

    Suguri, I believe has a college degree, so she must be skating because she wants to, not because she can't do anything else.

    As everyone else pointed out, they qualified to compete, so why should they quit if they don't want to?
  26. Frau Muller

    Frau Muller President of Dick Button Appreciation Club

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    No, she does not, sorry to say. Her prime was Dec 2003 - Grand-Prix Final in Colorado Springs. Technical expectations and method of grading (COP) have changed since then. Even if she skates the same wonderful LP that won her the Gold Medal in Colo Springs, she would be downgraded and not receive the points that make-up a winning program under the COP system.

    As for Fumie "skating because she wants to," I can only surmise that she has wealthy parents (or corporate sponsor or boyfriend or other backer?) bankrolling her. I have a "deep love" for a hobby but could never afford to quit my day-job to live full-time in my hobby. So that brings us to the question of why Fumie continues to appear in G-P events? Two possible answers:

    1. In Dec. 2009, she skated strongly enough in the Japan Nationals to be on Japan's "A List" for G-P assignments

    or...

    2. Perhaps Fumie's benefactor(s) make nice contributions to the Japan Federation, to get her on the "A List" of assignments.

    I am, of course, guessing that the correct answer is #1...that she earned her way to two G-P assignments this season. If that's the case, then let's leave her alone. She'll sink or swim.
    Last edited: Dec 22, 2010
  27. El Rey

    El Rey Well-Known Member

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    This was the last time Fumie was her best, IMO.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TX21Vo5LTKE
  28. GarrAarghHrumph

    GarrAarghHrumph I can kill you with my brain

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    It's not really that he "hasn't bothered to work on his non-jump elements". He's spoken about this in interviews, and said that the realities of his funding situation have meant that he doesn't usually have money to work with choreographers to the extent he needs to; and that he can't necessarily afford to get the coaching he'd need in order to be able to improve certain things such as some of those you'd mentioned. To me, from what I've read, it doesn't seem that he doesn't want to improve those things; but that he's got some roadblocks that he can't get past re: those things, and can't afford the help he'd need to do so.
  29. AxelAnnie

    AxelAnnie Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the link. I had forgotten that performance. I think my favorite performance of Fumie's was 2001 Goodwill Games in Australia. I believe she skated to Ave Maria, and Moonlight Sonata. She was so light and graceful on the ice. Not great line, but soft, soft knees.
  30. Allen

    Allen Glad to be back!

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    I went back and watched that performance and it was great. I do, however, think that it doesn't matter when her last great performance was. In the natural order of things, younger skaters will come up and beat her and if they don't, that's their fault, not her's for competing too long. If Fumie ends up in the bottom of every competition, but still wants to go out there and skate, why does it matter that she's past her prime? Obviously there are a lot of skaters out there that are not going to win competitions. Should every OES skater and the hundreds of skaters who never make it past regionals and sectionals in the US just retire? If KVDP and Fumie want to skate until they are 50, I say God bless them.
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  31. AxelAnnie

    AxelAnnie Well-Known Member

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    It is really kind of sad, because there is no where for them to go. Used to be they could retire from OES and have a great professional career. Kind of a bummer.
  32. victoriaheidi

    victoriaheidi New Member

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    I sort of wonder about Fumie's monetary background. She's competed in 31 GP events!

    I actually like her (for the most part), so I would be kind of sad if she retired (and, as others have said, it's not up to the fans to tell the skater to retire). But that's expensive.
  33. gkelly

    gkelly Well-Known Member

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    Really? What professional opportunities do you think would have been available to van der Perren ~15 years ago (or whenever you're thinking of) that aren't available to him now?

    There was a brief period when a likeable female skater from outside the US who had a couple of bronze and silver world medals to her name could have gotten invited to a few US-based professional competitions a year with fairly good prize money or appearance fees. That never proved to be a long-term career option for anyone, though.

    If the skater were really popular and charismatic, a long-term contract with a US-based tour might have been possible. But without a gold medal, US nationality, or strong enough performing personality or other gimmicks to develop a fan base among the American general public, opportunities for a skater would have been comparatively limited.

    What are money-making skating-related opportunities like in Japan these days? Does Arakawa earn more than Suguri, for example, not because she has an Olympic medal but because she's "professional"?
  34. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

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    Aren't ice shows still popular in Europe? I think there are still touring companies of Holiday On Ice touring throughout Europe.
  35. LongTimeLurker

    LongTimeLurker New Member

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    Skaters (of all ages) should compete because THEY want to.
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  36. Rex

    Rex Well-Known Member

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    His presentation hasn't improved at all, unfortunately, in about a decade of eligible skating.

    THIS.
  37. skateboy

    skateboy Well-Known Member

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  38. a56

    a56 New Member

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    I agree. :encore:
  39. Ozzisk8tr

    Ozzisk8tr Well-Known Member

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    We need those older skaters. If they retired who would we poke fun at? :p
  40. julieann

    julieann Well-Known Member

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    I agree, someone has to be last, otherwise the worlds and Olympics would only have the top 5 skaters.