U.S. Ladies [#7] Wagner's Rink Cycle

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by Vagabond, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. FunnyBut

    FunnyBut Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2002
    Messages:
    4,356
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  2. AndyWarhol

    AndyWarhol Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2009
    Messages:
    1,160
    perhaps. i guess they are in keeping with the boob shimmy in the sp in terms of being hideous. what is her LP music? I have watched each of her competitions through out the year, and the music has failed to stick to my memory.
  3. FunnyBut

    FunnyBut Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2002
    Messages:
    4,356
    What beautiful young ladies, all of them! Agnes looks so much better with her hair down. Is Gracie really so much more tiny than Agnes/Christina, or are the others in higher heels, or perhaps the camera angle?

    I've always thought that if the Olympic contending skater and the Harvard gig didn't work out, Christina could do well as a model. She is so stunningly pretty. Poor thing, so few opportunities in life :lol:
  4. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,482
    Gracie Gold's sp music: Hernando's Hideaway; lp music: Life is Beautiful (Jeremy Abbott used this for his lp 2010 - 2011)

    I don't see anything terrible about Gracie's music choices this season. I'm sure she will be challenged with better choreography and perhaps more interesting music choices as her skating continues to develop.

    What music do Gracie's critics think she should skate to?


    Yes, they all look gorgeous and relaxed in this photo. Agnes has got huge pretty eyes, and a distinctive heart-shaped face.


    ETA:
    Yes, perhaps Agnes is wearing heels and Gracie isn't, because they appear to be about the same height on the podium at the awards ceremony in Omaha.

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sport...ctations-skating-world-championships/1872461/
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  5. Sasha'sSpins

    Sasha'sSpins Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2006
    Messages:
    3,725
    It's from "Life is Beautiful". I've never seen the film but I read about it. I believe it was mentioned a few times on this board that that is where the marching bit (which I can't stand) in Gracie's choreo comes from.

    @aftershocks I don't have a problem with the music choices for Gracie's programs. It's really the choreography which is dreadful imo.
  6. Loves_Shizuka

    Loves_Shizuka Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2005
    Messages:
    12,281
    Pretteeee laydeeez!

    Gao is going to be so :smokin: as she gets older.

    And I still can't get over how much Gracie looks like my dear friend Rosie. Absolute doppelgangers. She has my support for this reason.
  7. kwanatic

    kwanatic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,911
    Well, thanks to most for not taking offense to my inquiry; a few people got snippy but that was to be expected :rolleyes:. I wasn't being passive-aggressive...I was just curious if perhaps I was missing something others were not.

    As for now Gracie's skating does nothing for me but I do think her jumps are amazing when she nails them. My main thing is I really want her to be a full package skater; not just a jumping bean with a pretty face. It's obvious it's going to take her a few years to get there (assuming she can) so for now I'm just going to have to be patient and curb my annoyance with the media regarding her. The way Phil and the rest go on about her, you'd think she was this well-rounded skater and she's not yet.

    I really do hope she has strong performances at worlds. The judges like her when she hits her jumps so hopefully she'll be able to control her nerves and deliver two decent skates...

    That picture of all four ladies is beautiful! I wonder how close all of the girls are? From what I've seen from backstage video, Ashley and Agnes seem to be really good friends and I think Christina and Mirai are kinda close...I think Christina is also pretty close with Maia too. I'm always curious about how skaters interact with each other when they aren't competing against one another. People used to make a big fuss about Michelle vs Tara back in the day b/c they were so competitive with each other. I haven't sensed a real "rivalry" in US skating in years, though I think that's b/c the top skaters seems to flip flop and shuffle every year.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  8. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2004
    Messages:
    3,939
    Exactly: there is no time for a rivalry to brew, and thus there isn't one.
  9. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    6,959
    ^I would just like to add my $.02 re Gracie.

    She's fast and powerful, and her jumps (when she's on) are among the best in the world. Her spins (lots of LV 4s), fw, and even her spiral have improved markedly this year. But since her elements by themselves are so good, it probably stands out even more that her choreography and interpretation are lacking. There's something pageant-y about her skating - 'OK. Smile right now. thrust your arm in the air here. Boob shimmy. check. Rockette kick, check.'

    Now, I see both sides of the argument - Gracie is new to the Senior ranks and she deserves a break. For all of her inconsistencies, she's generally transitioned well into the current pressure cooker of Senior ladies. OTOH, her peers like Adelina and Liza are doing a better job of being a 'presence' on the ice outside of technical maneuvers in many ways. Someone brought up Sasha and the Kween in their teen years. So, a young skater CAN effectively do it. Maybe, Ouriashev is just a good tech coach and she needs outside help on packaging?
  10. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2003
    Messages:
    2,779
    ITA. Gracie is not just a jumping bean. Her spins, for example, are really world class. It's even more amazing if you compare her spins now to the ones she was doing a year ago. My hope is that she will spend the summer working as hard on her choreography as she did with her spins during the previous one. If she can keep her head together, the TES score will be huge, possibly unbeatable. Now she needs to focus on the PCS. I think her team is aware of this, but we'll see.
  11. kwanatic

    kwanatic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,911
    ^^Her spins are nicely centered and fast, though I would like to see her work on her extension a little more. And please, please someone make her do a classic layback! I really hate how the US ladies are getting lazy with the layback like the Russians. But then again if you can get the points without doing a classic position (which is tougher), why bother? Meh.

    Who is Gracie's choreographer? It's not her coach is it? I'd like to see Gracie work with Lori, but NOT in terms of choreography. She needs to find someone else for that b/c with the exception of Carolina and Mao, Lori's choreography is pretty blah now. But Lori could teach Gracie about listening to the music, flowing with it and feeling it...that whole ooze thing.

    Aside from consistency and some more mature choreography, that's all Gracie's missing at this point.
  12. Sylvia

    Sylvia Whee, summer club comps!

    Joined:
    May 27, 2002
    Messages:
    29,986
    Gold's choreographer is Scott Brown. He also choreographed for Agnes Zawadzki (FS), Angela Wang (SP), and Ashley Cain this season. ETA: Brown choreographed Mariah Bell's programs before this season (I consider her one of the more naturally musical skaters).
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  13. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    6,959
    'Life is Beautiful' is a powerful movie, very emotional. It makes me cry to watch it even as a repeat. For those who don't know, it's the story of a father who uses games to shield his young son from the horrors of the holocaust, even while in a concentration camp.

    It's a real stretch for a very dramatic, expressive skater to interpret. Not sure what Team Gracie were thinking when they took it on. I wonder if she had seen it. She's not ready for that type of music.Oh well, Maybe she can watch it in London the night before her LP and it will draw some emotion from her. That would help her PCS a bit, seriously.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  14. Sasha'sSpins

    Sasha'sSpins Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2006
    Messages:
    3,725
    I think a good deal of Oksana, Sasha, Michelle, Adelina, and Liza's performance -and artistic qualities are innate imo rather than acquired. Some qualities simply can't be taught but I do think with lots of hard work one can markedly improve especially in expression, line, extension, toe point and so on.
  15. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    6,959
    Still, I think a simple, genuine interest in artistry can go a long way, even if a skater is not 'artistic' at the moment. It may be that he or she hasn't had any decent exposure to art?

    This may sound silly but using myself as an example - I never though about Opera, but once I met my current BF and he took me to several, I got the meaning of Opera and could feel its passion coursing through me during any performance. I don't know how that would translate to a skater, but maybe not having exposure to art might hinder artistic growth. Gracie has nice extension and is very capable of good toe point and acquiring great line, so maybe she needs people around her that 'handle' her less (that's what it looks like anyway) and allow her room to 'feel' music by letting her experience it personally.

    But, Worlds is in less than a month, so short term, she just needs to bring together all that she has in her arsenal at this point, hope the PCS gets carried along somewhat by a Nationals-like performance in both the SP and LP!
  16. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2004
    Messages:
    3,939
    Personally, I'd rather not have a repeat of her Nationals SP at worlds. :p
  17. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    6,959
    erm yes. I was writing too fast. I meant to say well executed performances in the SP and LP, with the LP like at Nationals :)
  18. kwanatic

    kwanatic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,911
    That's very true. Look at Irina. She made improvements to her presentation but Irina was not a graceful or lyrical skater. Whenever she tried it came off looking forced and disingenuous. Eventually she gave up trying and played to her strengths which, to me, was much better than her pretending to be something she was not.

    It's possible that Gracie won't be a very lyrical or expressive skater. As of now I don't see any innate artistic qualities about her. If that's the case, she and her team will have to develop a style of skating that works for her.
  19. aftershocks

    aftershocks Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2009
    Messages:
    4,482

    Well from your comments, I guess you kinda do like Gracie, really like her. Sounds as if you're frustrated with the media hyping her. Yes, better to ignore that, and indeed, practice patience. Figure skating is never a slam dunk.

    From your last paragraph, sounds like you're eager for a rivalry to bloom. On-ice rivalries are great, but off the ice they're just so not necessary and IMHO, detrimental.
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2013
  20. kwanatic

    kwanatic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,911
    I do like Gracie! I never said I didn't! :) I'm annoyed with the hype simply b/c she's a strong jumper but not much else even though the media is hailing her like she's ready to beat the best in the world even though she hasn't really accomplished much yet. Given her high level of technical content it would suck if she never developed the artistic side of her skating. I love a balance of both and right now she's all technical. But, patience is a virtue...we'll just have to see.

    I'd love a rivalry! Not the ugly side of it...I want the competitive side. The reason the ladies field is so deep in Russia and Japan right now is b/c of the level of skating at home. The competition in the US is getting tougher, but think about what the competition would be like if the girls from Russia had to compete against the US girls...

    Their technical level is much more demanding which means in order to move up, those skaters have to produce the goods. We need a rivalry/competitive atmosphere like that in the US.
  21. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    3,720
    I think the competitive atmosphere in the US is as tough if not tougher then any other country in the world. Besides over 50 some years of being the most dominating country in Ladies skating should tell you how competitive it has been here. And to be honest Russia has never had the depth the US has. Until about 3-4 years ago the Russian Ladies were in some serious hurt. Let's see where they are in about 7-8. Same with Japan.
  22. Maximillian

    Maximillian Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2002
    Messages:
    2,039
    I just can't get over the fact that a U.S. lady hasn't medalled at worlds since 2006. Wow!
  23. kwanatic

    kwanatic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 19, 2011
    Messages:
    1,911
    Well that's my point. I'd love the see the US return to it's former glory in terms of always having a top level world competitor. US ladies have been in a slump since 2007. The power shifted to Japan and Yu-Na Kim (S. Korea). Now we're seeing Russia producing strong skaters and they are just hitting the full-time senior level of skating. It'd be great to have a US skater who is clearly a top 3 finisher again...

    Ashley has a shot at top 3 but I think it's fair to say she has to be pretty much flawless and she'll have to rely on the top ladies to make mistakes. It'd be nice to have a Mao/Carolina/Yu-Na type skater from the US again.
  24. Jammers

    Jammers Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2010
    Messages:
    3,720
    I think part of the problem is that US coaches were slow to adapt to the new scoring system. Plus the USFS seemed to be looking for the new Michelle Kwan instead of realizing that is never going to be another MK. I think we are finally over that now.
  25. Yazmeen

    Yazmeen Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 5, 2003
    Messages:
    3,255
    It's also not helped by very few US ladies during that period having clean jumps. US Ladies get clobbered by underrotations, not to mention horrible inconsistency when it comes to triple-triples (and when they hit them, they are frequently underrotated). I think we're paying for too many years of little girls learning triple jumps badly just to be able to do triples as early as possible.
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2013
  26. AxelAnnie

    AxelAnnie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 23, 2002
    Messages:
    5,682
    For whatever it is worth......I think Gold is great, and a fine choice for the World Championships. I do, however, think her skating (jumps and spins aside) lack polish, attention to detail and sophistication. I hope that she has a team around her (a la "Ice Castles") that can help her maintain her technical edge while she "grows into" seniors.

    Her chest shaking thing is a good example of "cutsie" that isn't really what she wants or needs to be projecting. She has a little journey to take.........and most of the really good skaters took the same journey. Michelle (the jumping bean) to Michelle the artiste. Sarah Huges (although I will argue about her skills) realized she had to work on her "in betweens". I think Sasha was the only skater I can think of who never had to work on her musicality or finishes. Tara was always young and appropriate, a great technician who selected programs that were appropriate and served her well as vehicles to show case her talents.

    Hopefully Gracie is with or will be with people who can take her to the next level in her skating.
    IceAlisa and (deleted member) like this.
  27. UGG

    UGG Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2006
    Messages:
    1,838
    Also it seemed like the up and comers post Sasha and Michelle really focused on being uber flexible as opposed to technique. I can see why-Sasha was very successful under COP. But during Sasha's era of COP, the downgrades were not as severe.
  28. UGG

    UGG Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2006
    Messages:
    1,838
    Also I miss the rivalries where the ladies were not friends, giving each other fake hugs.LOL!!
  29. Maximillian

    Maximillian Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2002
    Messages:
    2,039
    That's the thing that intrigues me, I don't think Sasha, Michelle or Tara would've struggled too much under COP because urs weren't really their thing, edge problems were another story, but that's a problem for most all of the ladies even today. The only top U.S. lady that I can think of that had rotation issues was Sarah Hughes and they were quite pronounced, she would've been eaten alive were she to skate today.
  30. bek

    bek Guest

    I found Irina though very sloppy....At least Gracie isn't that. But I personally think there's very little connection to music on Gracie's end...I think cheerleader was kind of right on. However, I think that could change.

    This being said I think you can appreciate some things about someone's skating and hope for more on the other things. Those jumps are great! The spins are good too.
  31. AndyWarhol

    AndyWarhol Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 22, 2009
    Messages:
    1,160
    me too! bring back the bitches!
  32. mgobluegirl

    mgobluegirl Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2005
    Messages:
    2,028
    I actually think she may be part of the reason that underrotations are punished so heavily in IJS.
  33. jlai

    jlai Title-less

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2002
    Messages:
    8,775
    And yet callers in nationals are sometimes a bit too generous. (examples come to mind being sr ladies event at 2009 US nationals and 2012 US nationals)
  34. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    6,959
    I think a confluence of events occurred in the same timeframe which altogether really hit US ladies in the gut -

    1. As you stated, the US was slow to adapt to the new judging system
    2. Mao Asada and Yu Na Kim, once-in-a-lifetime type talents and world beaters, enter the Senior ranks at the same time
    3. Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen both effectively retire.
    4. Ladies in Waiting, Kimmie Meissner, '06 World Champ, and her back-up Emily Hughes, simultaneously suffer some of the slowest, most horrific implosions by top US lady skaters that I've ever seen.

    Kimmie and Emily left a big hole which forced a bunch of unprepared Juniors / newbie Seniors (Flatt, Nagasu, Zhang, Wagner), along with a talented headcase, Czisny, to rush out and contend with the likes of Mao, Yu Na, Miki, Joannie (who finally got it together).


    It's really not that unfathomable that the US is not on the World's podium.
    Maximillian and (deleted member) like this.
  35. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2004
    Messages:
    3,939
    ...hence all the excitement and pressure on Gold. But even if she didn't have the name I still think a big deal would be made about her (maybe not on this ridiculous level but she still would have been noticed).

    We have had next to zero luck with the 2008ers/Czisny lot (you can argue, we've even had "negative" luck with them) so - and I mean this with all due respect to Wagner, as a 2008er -maybe it will take two entirely DIFFERENT skaters, perhaps of the up-and-coming generation, to FINALLY get us out of this...
  36. MrSatterwhite

    MrSatterwhite Barely-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2005
    Messages:
    2,017

    Sarah Huges has a shot at top 3 but I think it's fair to say she has to be pretty much flawless and she'll have to rely on the top ladies to make mistakes.

    Arakawa has a shot at the Olympic gold but I think it's fair to say she has to be pretty much flawless and she'll have to rely on the top ladies to make mistakes.

    Kevin Reynolds has a shot at top 3 but I think it's fair to say he has to be pretty much flawless and he'll have to rely on the top guys to make mistakes.

    Kimmie Meissner has a shot at top 3 but I think it's fair to say she has to be pretty much flawless and she'll have to rely on the top ladies to make mistakes.


    Hey guys, it's happened before! ;)
  37. Loves_Shizuka

    Loves_Shizuka Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 24, 2005
    Messages:
    12,281
    Did you not see Ashley and Gracie at Nationals?! I think the "not impressed" reaction by Gracie has been blown way out of proportion, and was actually pretty tame, but that "hug" between the two was uuuuuber awkward.




    Lav' it! :p :EVILLE:
  38. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

    Joined:
    May 9, 2002
    Messages:
    11,237
    The decade between Bobek and Cohen (1995 to 2006) was really quite impressive for US ladies, because there was at least one and frequently two US ladies on or near the podium at Worlds / Olympics.

    Having said that, perhaps the success of Lipinski and Hughes with difficult jumps have pushed the girls to master triples and combinations before they were ready or had the technique to back it up. Meisser is a grand example. It was OK when they were young, but once their bodies matured, their jumps fell apart because there was no more technique to fall back on. And COP rules on UR and edge calls certainly have not been kind of these girls.

    Conclusion is:

    1. don't be so spoiled about always having dominant disciplines (learn from Chinese pairs!)
    2. be thankful for Kwan :p
    kwanette and (deleted member) like this.
  39. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 17, 2004
    Messages:
    6,959
    Adding to my post above, I sometimes wonder what would've happened had Kimmie and Emily simply blossomed in the '07 - '10 era, like so many US ladies had in decades past when it became their turn to be at the forefront. All of Flatt, Nagasu, Wagner and Zhang may have taken turns as no. 3 lady, meaning a lot less pressure to mature and stabilize more slowly, thus avoiding injury and having time to really develop.
  40. UGG

    UGG Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2006
    Messages:
    1,838
    I don't think Emily would have ever developed into a podium contender. She did have some really nice elements to her skating though and was good enough to be a dependable skater to maintain three spots. I think Kimmie could have improved if she just did not have all those injuries, but with Mao and Yuna, there really would have been no way she would ever have been a gold medal contender. I think she would have always had a shot at bronze though.