Vaitsekhovskaya speaks to Mishin `The great ones are judged differently'

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by TAHbKA, Mar 1, 2013.

  1. TAHbKA

    TAHbKA Well-Known Member

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    Vaitsekhovskaya's interview with Mishin `The great athletes live by different standards' for sport-express.ru

    On February 26th the known Russian figure skating coach Alexey Mishin was nominated for the international price `The Person of the Year'
    The coach was short about it:
    - Surprised. But it's really nice

    EV: Which of your achievements are the most rewarding: those that the public sees, like your pupils numerous titles, or those that are not so visible?
    AM: I was talking recently to a friend, who've been gathering the history of children figure skating for a while now. He said: there is no other coach who has as many men champions as you do. But it's all vain really. Take Nikolai Panin-KOlomenkin, the first Russian Olympic champion, who is remembered for that only. Yet for me he is the man who left a lot of figure skating written theory behind. He created the base of our sport. I think it's much more important than the Olympic medal he won. As for me - the knowledge my system is used by the coaches all over the world to teach kids jumping is rewarding. It became a common knowledge and people don't even recall the source. It's the main achievement of my life.

    EV: It happens in the sports you are only remembered while you are there. The minute the results are gone the coaches are forgotten.
    AM: I know it and I've been ready. Though I never really sunk in my profession. My career mainly included successes and wins. Believe me, even should I be forgotten I won't terribly mind. Tamara Moskvina once said `Lesha, we did so much we don't have to be ashamed no matter what we'll do from now on'

    EV: And yet up till 2006 not only your pupils were skating decently in the competitions, but they usually medalled. After Pluschenko retired there is a void. Do you mind? Or relieved not stressting about the sport anymore?
    AM: I was certainly not happy. While I was focused on Pluschenko only - a few years before the Olympics in Turino I was with him - my group was filled with.... Basically it was too late trying to make anything of them. I didn't see any potential there. I reminded myself that man who was planting the potatoes in the morning and digging them out in the evening because there is nothing to eat. I had no one to work with for the future. This is why I took Liza Tuktamysheva.

    EV: How does it feel coming to a practice, working and realizing it is useless?
    AM: Very hard indeed. I know many of my skaters were offended. They understood: they do something on the ice and expect me to watch, but I try to see with the corner of my eye what is Liza doing. Because that little nothing was showing some blinks of the talent.

    EV: In the previous years you were talking about how wrong the CoP is and how the jumps are not given enough points. Are you satisfied with the direction the CoP is developing?
    AM: I think at the time it was developing wrongly. I mean the so called `transitions'. Neither Lysacek no Cahn had quad jumps back then. It was all about : if you have horrid legs but a nice chest show the chest and cover the legs. There was a reason Chan was saying he'd beat Pluschenko without the quads. Now it all goes as it should. Not because the ISU wanted so, but the logic of development of the sport, which was always about faster, higher, stronger. The late Alexandr Zhuk was 100% right saying the technique will always come before the artistry in figure skating. I myself wrote in one of my articles in 1973 the ultra c jumps will be the most of figure skating. This is why everyone are attempting the quads now.

    EV: Your skaters were always ahead of the rest of the world in jumps. Urmanov, Pluschenko, even Gachinski who started landing the quads while the skaters of his age were not even thinking about it. Now it seems Gachinski is not only not one of the top skaters, but no one can even really tell whether he should recover and come back.
    AM: Gachinski is a different story. There were reasons and I don't want to go into them. He says he lost the feeling of the jump. But I assure you, that feeling will come back. I have reasons to believe so.

    EV: Are you really upset with what happens to Arthur?
    AM: Of course it's bad the skater lost his head, especially when there was no real leader in Russian team. Though you know, just before I left to Moscow Gachinski and our new choreographer Yuri Smekalov were working on the next season LP and I liked a lot what it looked like. He looks noble, I'd say.

    EV: What do you think about the fact there is a new face in the Russian men team?
    AM: I was recently interviewed for NTV+ and I was asked what do I think about the new Tarasova-Mishin rivalry.

    EV: Am far from thinking there is a rivalry at this point. Not because Gachinski or Kovtun are better or worse, but rather because both are far from being `top'. Especially far from Pluschenko and Yagudin's results during heir years of rivalry.
    AM: Nevertheless that question was voiced. I replied Tarasova and I are working together much more than against each other. Take Kovtun - when he was skating in his first coach's Marina Voitsekhovskaya's group came to St. Petersburg to me to work on his jumps. Then he went to Morozov, where he learned more things. I.e. in the end of the day it's not a rivalry but combining the work of various coaches to gain the result. If we should start working against each other, no matter which discipline it will be - we'll be torn to pieces in Sochi.

    EV: How much of your time did Pluschenko take this season?
    AM: Now while Zhenya is recovering after his surgery he doesn't take any time at all. When he was training - he overtook everyone. He projects such an energy that people became quiet and wouldn't even speak aloud when Zhenya was skating. I had no right to devote more time to anyone else. It would be a sin against Pluschenko.

    EV: I remember at the time Stanislav Zhuk declined working with the great pair Rodnina/Zaitsev. He realized no matter what the result will be it will be awarded to them and not the coach. You realize any achievement Pluschenko had after Turino the public saw as his and not yours.
    AM: It's not quite right. Say, tree years ago I decided to take a 10 days vacation. Zhenya called me 3 days later and said `Come back! I can't do anything without you!'

    EV: Yes, those are the details you know, but not the public.Do you mind continuing working knowing it will never be appreciated?
    AM: The greatness of the athlete, his fame, money etc will always be more than his coach's. It's normal, it's the way it should be.

    EV: Are you getting tired waiting when will Pluschenko finally retire? By continuing working with him you deprive Gachinski, Tuktamysheva and others who, unlike Pluschenko, still have things to learn and to progress.
    AM: You can't break a team after 20 years of common work. You can't. Don't you understand? You can't judge the great athletes with the normal measures. They open the window into the unknownn.

    EV: What do you mean by that? The ability to land quads at the age of 30?
    AM: It's deeper. Yuri Vlasov was the first to push 500kg, Armin Hari was the first to run 100m in 10sec, Bob Beamon did a 8.90jump. As for 4 Olympics in singles...
    EV: Were done at the beginning of last century by the Swede Gillis Grafström, and he won 3 of them
    AM: I didn't know about it. I think Evgeni doesn't either. Hence we were aiming for it.
    EV: It's a shame all those records are long taken. Karl Schäfer won the Worlds 7 times and the Europeans 8. One more than Pluschenko did. There is no achievement your pupil would beat continuing skating. Hence many wonder: why after all those injuries and surgeries he continues torturing himself? Just because it's the only way to earn money?
    AM: It's not quite that. Had Pluschenko decided to skate in the show instead of training he would earn much more. He had just cancelled 36 shows because of his back surgery.

    EV: Are you afraid? You understand much better than me how thin the edge he would be balancing on should he decide to come back to the amateur sport.
    AM: And yet I will still be interested working with him. When he comes to the practice you can't stop watching him - he projects to much will and interest. Let me tell you more: comparing Zhenya at the beginning of his career - those primitive crossovers and the one we have now I can see how mature his skating looks. He became a real artist, which he wasn't even in the years he used to beat everyone.

    EV: The last question: about the upcoming worlds. At the beginning of the season you mentioned several times Tuktamysheva is not on the top of her shape. How would you describe her shape now - 2 weeks before the main competition?
    AM: It's still not ideal. Liza is going through the hard time of becoming a young woman from a girl. We'll do our best though
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2013
  2. TAHbKA

    TAHbKA Well-Known Member

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    AAAAAAAAAAAaaaa, they set a goal to beat all the records and they don't go to the wiki to check what the records are! Awesome!
     
  3. Glacier cat

    Glacier cat New Member

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    LOL!!! I was actually wondering if Mishin and Plushy know former four-time Olympians and Gillis Grafström. Today finally it turned out I was right. They didn't know that! :lol:



    Seriously, I think it does not really matter because those greats - Karl Schäfer, Grafström, Ulrich Salchow - were people who lived a century ago. Plushy is only living man who has three Olympic medals and even has a chance to be fourth Olympic medalist. Of course, realistically, it must be extraordinarily-difficult. But he has a chance. So they can find new motivation to try to make the Olympic Team. Good luck to them and thank you for the speedy translation, TAHbKA :)
     
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  4. yaya124

    yaya124 New Member

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    Exactly. They are talking about MODERN figure skating. It is like, Елены ВАЙЦЕХОВСКОЙ as a former platform diver OGM, can she compare her technique against the divers nowadays? But of course if she is only into numbers, she is right here.

    And apparently she does not know the price money for nowadays competition, right???

    Thanks for the translation.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2013
  5. npavel

    npavel Well-Known Member

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    TAHbKA, you are such a treasure. Thank you for all the translations you do. :encore::respec::cheer2:
     
  6. rfisher

    rfisher Satisfied skating fan

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    Mishin fascinates me. I would love to spend time talking to him.
     
  7. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    I don't think he is very speaking type of person. :lol: (at least what I saw in Zagreb).
     
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  8. TAHbKA

    TAHbKA Well-Known Member

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    Not quite. It is Mishin who talks about Yuri Vlasov (Olympic champion 1960), Armin Hary (1960 again), Bob Beamon (1968 I think). If he goes so far back he might as well go back to the 20s-30s, IMHO
     
  9. lala

    lala Well-Known Member

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    If you really care about Mishin http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3O-OW2DmMtA Plush and Vaitsekhovskaya( 1'58" she is) speeks personally in this interview
    and http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6k9bVQoI2pQ 6:45 :)

    Fumie Suguri about Mishin:
    From Japanese magazine "Figure Skating Days Plus 2009-2010"
    Interview with Fumie Suguri

    .....
    - Mishin is also a scientist. What do you think about his method?
    - He makes a special effort to technical side. He is pretty logical. Everyday he gives the Sermon to his pupils. (Laugh)

    .....
    - Please tell us how Mishin joked?
    - I know many things. When the first time I met him, he said to me "You are walking a whole day the same place like an elephant in the jungle! That's whay you can't make a good job!!" (Laugh). And, he divided his students into two groups because there are too many skateres. He called two groups - "Ugly" and "Not ugly" (Laugh). I know much more about that. It's so funny.
    - "Coach Mishin" reminds me of Plushenko. Do you think relationships between them is special?
    - I do think it seems that Plushenko is special to him. He usually lays down the law to his pupils. But I see he has a sort of parental love (she says like "Daddy's love" in Japanese ) for Plushenko. Sometimes he looks at Plushenko with concerned eyes (Laugh). So, Plushenko is special unlike other pupils.
    ...........
    Plushy organized the Mishin's 70 anniversary. About their relatonships:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q5vFpvBrSKU "Plushy: "I love you as a father. Thank you!". Mishin: "I love you like a son.... even more."

    http://fsrussia.ru/news/456_aleksej-mishin-stal-personoj-goda/
    in another interview, with google translation, sorry

    "This award is a recognition not only of my merit, but all of St. Petersburg coaches from different generations, who laid the foundations of sports culture, and figure skating. They include Ivan Epiphany, Peter Orlov, Stanislav A. Zhuk, Igor Moskvin ... and yours truly.

    Perhaps immodestly say about their own merits, but the fact remains that for over four decades, my students, and, therefore, I, their coach, remains one of the leaders of the world figure skating. His main contribution to the national and world sport, I think, not the quantity grown and trained Olympic champions. Although historians of the sport Yuri Yakimchuk estimated that none of the coaches figure skating was not so much champions in men's singles. The main contribution - is developed by me jump-learning system, which actually was the "people." The use of this technique can be seen in almost all countries of the world - from New Zealand to Canada's North, despite the fact that the coaches do not always refer to the "source", and some of them do not know who the author. But in life, this happens quite often. Great read Arkady Raikin brilliant witty monologues, and few people knew that they were written by Michael Zhvanetsky."
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2013
  10. lala

    lala Well-Known Member

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    of course, of course...
     
  11. TAHbKA

    TAHbKA Well-Known Member

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    Am not sure about Zagreb, but IMHO generally he is very talkative and nice.
     
  12. Cherub721

    Cherub721 YEAH!

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    I love it. :rofl: I had never thought about it, but I guess it's true that the longer the skater competes, the more the glory goes to the skater, and not the coach... but Mishin really deserves tremendous credit for assisting Plushy with the regime that still allows him to land quads at this age.

    I also love what he said about Panin's developing the written materials being more important than winning a medal. Professor Mishin indeed. :)
     
  13. NadineWhite

    NadineWhite Well-Known Member

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    I love this latest interview by The Great Alexy Mishin! *two thumbs up*

    Four things in particular stand out to me:

    1.) his mention of how history forgets those that came first. It brings to mind a famous quote by Ethel Barrymore ~ "We who play, who entertain for a few years, what can we leave that will last?". Never fear my dear, more than a 100+ years later we still remember the Great Flying Barrymores!!!! And I dare say the same will be said of not only Plushenko, but his coach as well, the one whom taught him all...

    2.) how the late Alexander Zhuk was right on in his theory that technique will always come before artistry. Truer words were never spoken, alas heartbreaking for those that are fans of such pairs like D&S. :(

    3.) how the great ones are judged differently. ditto, which brings to mind another quote "There are things known, and things unknown, and in between are the Doors". Remember, of perception:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5XWQrt00_NM

    4.) and alas (scroll to almost the bottom): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Olympic_medalists_in_figure_skating (I'll be cheering you on, Zhenya & Mr. Mishin & co., as always) :respec::kickass:


    "to be a success an actress must have the face of Venus, the brain of Minerva, the grace of Terpsichore, the memory of Macaulay, the figure of Juno and the hide of a rhinoceros." ~ E.B.
     
  14. yaya124

    yaya124 New Member

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    First of all, as I said in my post what EV pointed out are all right. Plushenko cannot "break" any records anymore.

    But it does not mean what Plushenko tries to do now is all in vain. True what they thought would be a record is not really a record, but seeing how the figure skating evolves comparing to when Gillis Grastrum was competing, it would still be quite an achievement. Maybe she is just tired of listening to Mishin saying these words, but to come out like that is very rude.

    Because there is no record to break so athletes should not push themselves to reach a limit they never reached? Logical maybe to normal people, not for people doing sports. And EV was an OGM. She should know it.

    The questions about money, it is quite laughable. But of course she might just regarding herself as a community speaker as Zhurankov thinks he is, and bring all these opinions on the table to discuss.

    EV provides many interesting interviews, but sometimes the questions are just so controversial. Purely IMO of course.
     
  15. TAHbKA

    TAHbKA Well-Known Member

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    I think Vaitseskhovskaya (and not only her) questions why is Pluschenko keeps pushing himself. He is already past the point when it was just hard work, crazy etc, now it's plain dangerous and if things should wrong he'll be facing becoming handicapped. I personally can't understand his motives, but then I'm not an athlete and don't understand why would anyone continue skating after, say, breaking a limb. Vaitsekhovskaya on the other hand was an athlete and an OGM, so had she seen the motive am quite sure she would voice it by now.

    Had Pluschenko stopped after the SLC it would be an achievement. Vancouver was a great achievement. Turino was unbelievable. Sochi? IMHO insanity and given his current state - not a well calculated one as well. Had Pluschenko retired at any point in the last 2-3-4-5-6-7 years his achievements and the way he pushed the sport would be great anyway.

    That's the point, that they think they are breaking a record, while they actually not. As for the limit - my impression is that Pluschenko;'s limit was already reached (but then I was saying the same in 2009)

    Zhurankov was voicing his opinion. Rude, etc, but it's his opinion. The question about the money is not laughable actually. Try reading a bit about, say, Kira Ivanova and other Russian great skaters. Not everyone participates Averbukh's show and is famous and well off.

    IMHO most of her questions are controversial, some I can't believe she actually dares to ask, but deep down most of us would love to read answers to those.
     
  16. caseyedwards

    caseyedwards Well-Known Member

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    First she's like throw gachinski overboard and then she's like mishin is not doing enough for gachinski because plushenkos around!
     
  17. yaya124

    yaya124 New Member

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    It is dangerous, but the way she asks her question showing no sign that she has any concerns for Plushenko's health (maybe when she said 'torture himself' meant for that). And I doubt even if she could see the motive she would keep it to herself since it won't fit for her tune.


    Why if he would stop after 2002 would be an achievement when he had not yet an OGM? Maybe what he achieved in 2002 was great for many, but not for him.
    As for post 2006, to be honest, if Russia could produce another strong skater, probably Plushenko would not return in 2010, or retire after 2010. Something is more than personal achievement playing an very important role here IMO.


    Maybe they should put "this century"? Physically maybe you are right, he just has so many and so severe injuries.


    She is talking about Plushenko, not other skaters. That is why her question sounds laughable.

    True.
     
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2013
  18. lala

    lala Well-Known Member

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    Yes, Zhurankov said his opinion-actually he lied- but there are some stupid people who believe him, and they say not only Plushy lied, but Mishin, Tuk, Yana, the whole team! And Edvin Marton is still lied, because he does not have the original Stradivarius violin.!!!!! :lol::confused: Sometimes the stupidity of people is endless.
    And for me Vaitsekhovskaya is a turncoat and malicious journalist.
     
    Last edited: Mar 2, 2013
  19. misskarne

    misskarne #ForzaJules #KeepFightingMichael

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    Yes, I'm not quite sure what she was after with all the Gachinski questions. First she was trying to get him to berate Gachinski's performances in public, then she was trying to get him to admit he neglects his other skaters?


    I have always admired and respected Professor Mishin, but this season has really increased my respect for him. Between Plushenko's injuries, Gachinski's raft of problems, and Tuktamysheva's growth spurt and injury, a lot of lesser coaches might have lost the plot, or expressed their displeasure publically. But he held firm and worked with them and supported them, and now Tuktamysheva is off to Worlds, and Gachinski has been able to fight back a little, and Plushenko will return to the ice at some future point to aim for Sochi.
     
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  20. Glacier cat

    Glacier cat New Member

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    Once I talked with him, not in Zagreb. I thought he was friendly and cheerful person. Maybe in Zagreb he was anxious about Plushy :)
     
  21. Glacier cat

    Glacier cat New Member

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    Interesting. Plushy is REALLY the only one `living' skater on this list. Moreover he is a single skater. Not Pairs. This is simply great :)


     
  22. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    That's possible. Every time we met him in the hotel he looked like if he has been constantly pissed off. I do have a huge respect for him as a coach, but seeing his face there looking repeatedly so sour/angry, I thought I wouldn't want someone like that coaching me.
     
  23. lala

    lala Well-Known Member

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    I read many opinions from his pupils. They love him. I think Mishin rigor of a misconception as Tarasova is the best, Morozov is the worst, Yagudin is the most artistry, Plushenko is only jumper, Kevin Reynolds has bad skating skills, only the North-American choreography is good, ,etc. The people say say say, and lots of people believe it, without knowing the truth.
     
  24. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    But I am not basing my opinion on what people say, I am basing it on what I saw. I while I agree that this years Europeans could have been quite difficult for him because of Plushenko, and maybe he is not like this all the time, I am just saying what I saw.

    I am sure that his students love him. So do Morozov's student love Morozov, and generally, most students do like their coaches. That's true on any level, not only at elite level. Even at my rink most of people like and respect their coach.
     
  25. yaya124

    yaya124 New Member

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    I saw him in Zagreb before men's SP, he was ordering coffee. He seemed cheerful enough to me. And I heard couple of stories from some fans who met him in summer training camp, just hilariously funny.

    I think people would have certain image of these well known persons, unless what they saw is totally different, they tend to fit what they saw into the preset 'frame'. For example, probably you think Mishin is a very serious person, then when you saw him in person not smiling around, you would either think 'yes, he is a very serious man' or you would think he is pissed off by something/someone.

    Never mind, these are all personal opinions, no big deal.
     
  26. misskarne

    misskarne #ForzaJules #KeepFightingMichael

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    It wouldn't at all surprise me if Mishin was especially tense in Zagreb.
     
  27. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    Not sure if 'a very serious person' describes it enough. It seemed to me more like 'a miserable' would be better description. :) and I am not basing it on just once seeing him, but seeing him quite a few times in the hotel.
     
  28. yaya124

    yaya124 New Member

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    Please read my following two sentences after the one you made in bold.

    But as misskarne pointed it out, Plushenko apparently was in a very bad shape so if Mishin was not happy it is perfectly understandable.
     
  29. hanca

    hanca Well-Known Member

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    Please, read my post number 22 and 24. I did say that it's possible that he was just anxious about Plushenko. I have also said that I agree that this years Europeans could have been quite difficult for him because of Plushenko, and maybe he is not like this all the time. However, I can still have an opinion based on what I saw.
     
  30. ItalianFan

    ItalianFan Member

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    I seriously don't think it would be so terribly "not record breaking" to be only the 2nd person in history to have 4 oly medals.....even of course he could never equal the three gold.