Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by jlai, May 27, 2010.
Wagner will be making her 2nd Stars on Ice tour guest appearance tonight in Salt Lake City.
Must have been tough coming third at US Nationals. Especially after beating Nagasu in the free but stumbling in the short.
With two spots on the World team next year, is going to have to step it up and go for a triple - triple in the short with any hope of matching Rachael and Mirai now.
Yeah it was unfortunate not going to Olympics by 4 points. I think that she should probably play it a little conservative in the short. Nagasu really needs to get on top of her free skate game.
I really like Ashley, but sometimes I think she is a bit overconfident in her performances. I mean, really, a LP with just 4 clean triples is the "program of her life"????? She really needs to address the 2-foot issues, and work on centering her spins. All the other pieces are there, IMO. I hope her and Mirai make the trip to worlds next year.
With Gao and Zawadzki, and maybe even Czisny, as spoilers. I mean Mirai beat Rachael at the Olympics with no 3-3 and beat her in the SP at Nationals this year with no 3-3, so Ashley may be able to pass Rachael without a 3-3 IF she fixes her flutz and stops 2-footing her jumps.
As for Mirai, if she gets her 3lz-3t solid, then I think she will be tough to catch, especially because she already has a very solid 2a-3t and with the new rules on URs I expect she'll start going for the 3-3, in both programs, all the time. Plus the occasional URed jump won't kill her scores now like they did before. Everything else is there. Gao can maybe challenge her but I think that will take a couple more years to happen.
I like Ashley, but I'm a little unclear on something. She finished 4th at the Grand Prix Final and 3rd at Nationals. This gets her SOI appearances. ( as it should )
But let's say she finished 3rd at both GPF and Nationals, then competed in the Olympics. Would this also warrant SOI appearances???????
depends, would she slap her face in the SP?
THIS. I like Ashley, but I hate it when she comes off as the underdog in her interviews IMO. It's not gonna get her to worlds next year. Hard work and practice will, which I'm sure she already knows. Save me the talk. I wanna see RESULTS.
I have never seen her as an underdog. She is just someone who makes mistakes and therefore screws herself big time. There is really no #1 US lady now so therefore I dont see how anyone can view themself as an underdog.
Gao probably will need to wait another year to get to the top. YuNa wasn't transformed overnight, and certainly Gao has more issues than YuNa did when she was 15-16.
Zawadski will definitely do well next year in seniors and at Nationals, but I think the judges will tell her to wait her turn.
IMO, Gao has the potential to go farther than Zawadzki. Agnes is a bit generic and her height is concerning, most tall skaters have major consistency issues and Agnes is 5'6" and may still be growing.
Christina has a slight flutz, but apart from that her technique is great, her speed is at least good in the beginning and certainly she is much faster than Agnes. Her spins are good, not amazing, but she can spin, flexibility is nice, she's elegant, she just needs to work a bit more on presentation and then she will be the soup. Agnes sort of seems like Tom's other students - Alexe, Rachael - very good but not unique. She will do well for herself if she can stay consistent, but internationally, I don't think she'll be winning many medals.
As for Yuna, her transformation wasn't over night but just to give you an idea of what a difference a year can make:
One year can make a big difference
I completely agree...she certainly talks a big game for someone who has yet to win a major title. It is ashame she missed the Olympics, but she knew going in there was only two spots available. If Ashley wants to do well next season, i'd skip the PR and get back to practice...there are a lot of good girls coming up the ranks and if the 2006-2010 years proved anything it is that ladies figure skating is demanding, unpredictable and ever changing
Hmmm. Agnes is definitely very tall and she might have jump issues later in life with that scary technique, but Tom does a rather good job with keeping the consistency with his skaters. But of course, when you compare Agnes and Christina, both of them are so different--both have good jumps, but everything seems to end there.
Agnes is slow while Christina is pretty fast. Agnes is a better spinner than Christina and their artistic styles are very different..... But I do see some potential in Agnes (as opposed to many of you who don't think so, but whatever--have Tom's skaters ever risen to the tippy top? (like World Medals).
Anyway, only time will tell with the younger ones... Hopefully they don't undergo a meltdown a la Kimmie.
I don't think she'll undergo a Kimmie meltdown, Agnes seems to have a pretty wiry build so I don't think she'll fill out a lot through the hips and thighs like Kimmie did. As for Tom's skaters, Alexe and Ryan are not exactly consistent, and both those skaters are tall. I don't find Agnes's technique particularly scary I just wonder with her height. She def has potential but like you pointed out, Tom's skaters don't tend to go on and win World medals, or even qualify for the GPF most years so if Agnes follows suit with the mold, she'll be a technically strong skater who holds her own internationally without blowing the field away.
Christina between her great jumps, speed, line, and body type I think has more star potential, but right now Agnes is heavy edge to Christina. That being said I wouldn't be surprised if Christina passes Agnes (and just about everyone else) in the future, which could be as early as this season, or may take a couple more years, or may never happen. Plus Christina isn't tall and I don't think her body will ever be an issue judging by how thin she is at 16.
Exactly. Her only mistake was going for the lutz instead of the loop in the sp at Nationals. But other than that, she packed both programs with transitions, difficult passes, elements of the highest level and quality and very good polish and speed.
I think if she was clean in the sp her scoring in the lp would have been very different and she would have been to Vancouver with Mirai.
I don't see the "overconfidence" or "big game talk" that other folks are seeing in Wagner. Instead, I see someone very ambitious- who sets high standards and goals for herself and incidentally, unlike many other skaters, isn't afraid to keep those ambitions to herself. And why should she? I thought she was an athlete...she knows she has to work hard to get there and from the articles, seems like she is doing just that. I know some folks would rather let the skating do the talking but I think that's boring.
This season, she set a goal for herself: going to the Olys. She fell short, so she said she wants to try again in '14. Maybe I'm different or something but I don't see the outcry. She'll be what- 22? if she can stay healthy and keep improving it's definitely doable. If she succeeded in making Olys, I somehow think this would be a non-issue...
I've said this before, but the big thing she needs to do is strengthen her SP. Time after time she sabotages herself, digs herself a hole that she has to climb out of...this proved to be the difference at Nationals. Even with a very strong FS, she had to depend on mistakes from two of Nagasu, Flatt and Cohen. Cohen went as planned, but there was still Flatt and Nagasu. Flatt was her usual dependable self which left Nagasu as the wildcard. If Wagner had not fallen, I think she would have been going to Vancouver instead of Mirai.
I think she said she wanted to be part of the '11 team and help get 3 spots back for '12. She can definitely do it if she gets her SP down and her FS jumps under control. (Anyone think the "70% rule" might help her out?) Once she actually gets on the world team, though, things get tougher. Even at her best (unless Yuna, Rochette and Ando retire) I think she can hope for lower top 10, which is fine if she is paired with a Nagasu that can manage bronze or 4th. I'd say Flatt and Nagasu might be the best shot (especially with the stress of an Olympic year eliminated this time) but Flatt seems to have reached her peaking point...anyway, we'll see what happens.
P.S. I wonder what happened to her video blogs. I wonder if she will start doing those again, or whether it was just an experiment or something...
Go Ashley! She and Mirai are my favorites of the current US ladies.
Well, let's discuss "big talk". The USFSA put out some "big talk" for a year and a half on how certain international events would factor into the Olympic team .... not just Nationals. Ashley was the only U.S. lady to make the Final. How much did that factor in? It seems not much? Could making the Final be considered worth 4 more points at Nationals?
In all 4 disciplines, National results were the only factor.
I actually love Ashley's determination and focus with skating. I agree with RD that she seems ambitious but not overconfident. There's nothing wrong with talking about your goals as long as you're not arrogant or saying nasty things about other skaters.
I'm really hoping it's Ashley and Mirai on the World team next season. I think Rachael has peaked, and Christina and Agnes don't seem quite ready. 2011 is most likely Ashley's best shot, and it's possible if she skates clean.
I agree with your point. Why even have a list of other criteriae if only Nationals matters? HOWEVER, imo Nagasu gave the winning performance at Nationals but got dinged (unfairly in some instances) on UR's which only seemed to be a political move for Flatt to go into the Olys with the National title to maybe boost her scores for her boring skating. Yes, Ashley was 4 points behind Nagasu at Nationals, but had Nagasu been scored properly, as she was at the Olympics and Worlds, she would have walked away with the title and blown away Flatt, let alone Wagner.
Were there any other questionable calls. I don't remember Keanu and Rockne setting the world on fire for the last year, so they needed to earn it at Nats. But did anyone else make GPF and not the Oly team?
Ashley is a strong free skater. I felt sorry for her at last year's Junior Worlds. Caroline was 8 places beneath her after the short, yet finished above her. That must have hurt. Then there was her heart problem.
You didn't know? There wasn't much fuss made of it anyway.... But anyway, during Junior Worlds, she found that her heart was beating very fast and they found that it was because of stress and dehydration.
Wagner, among the women who will begin competition Thursday at the U.S. figure skating championships in Spokane, Wash., developed heart palpitations while in Sofia, Bulgaria, last February for the junior world championships.
Is that permanent or has her heart palpitations been taken care of?
Can she not take beta blockers for that, or are they banned substances?
I cannot imagine how a beta blocker could ever help a freeskate, maybe a SP. But she'd never get through a freeskate with medical load of BB.
Is it nerves? Eating disorder?
"Once I got home, I went straight to the doctor and made sure that everything was OK structurally and I wasn't really in any danger," said Wagner, who was born in Germany as the daughter of a U.S. Army officer.
"Now, I just have to stay hydrated, and I have to stay calm."
Not to beat this dead horse (again) but I agree- except for the "political" comment. Then again, people were arguing that Flatt should have gotten the title last year instead of Czisny. I tell you, the judging at Nats (at least in the ladies' event) has been sketchy and controversial the past two years...maybe it was always like that but it's only more obvious now that there is no clear leader...
Not sure what the point is here...do people think that because of her GPF qualification, Wagner should have been given the ticket? I can understand if she won GPF, or even medaled, but she merely made the cut. Besides, getting into the GPF is as much about the draw you get as it is how well you skate...I think the USFS knows this. Wagner controlled her own fate at Nats...it was unfortunate that we had only 2 spots and not 3, or this would be a non-issue. Of course it was going to be very competitive and someone would go home very disappointed. If it wasn't Wagner, then it would be Nagasu, or Flatt, etc. (I'm not including Zhang or Czisny because they took themselves out of contention early and weren't "close but not quite there")
In my opinion being the US champion has not boosted anyone´s scores either in men or in ladies discipline for quite some time.... It does not matter whether you are the US champion or not, the only thing that matters is, how you skate in major international events according to the judges.
Hmmm, maybe sometimes it's about the luck of the draw, but I wouldn't say so in this case. I wouldn't say Wagner had easier GPs than the rest of the US girls, and it could be argued her's were harder.
I don't know, GPF is a big deal and it should hold more weight. In fact, I long been in favour of a rule change that anyone who medals at the GPF should get an automatic bye to Olympics/worlds, and thus, does not need to use up his/her country's spot.
Just think, if this rule was in place we'd have had Yukari and another Japanese girl at the Olympics, and the American men could have sent Bradley and Rippon. And Kim and Brent could have gone in dance...*sigh*
That makes a lot of sense. Though the USFSA will certainly not like it ...... nor any other federation. It means that superstars no longer have to show up to their own national championships.
From Wagner to USFS complaints?
There was a discussion before nationals at GS on this. The way that discussion sounded to me was that nationals has long been a big deal not just to USFS but also to the athletes who want their shot on the world or Oly team (not to be taken away by a GPF medalist), and the athletes who represented the other skaters at USFS also want it that way. What you want to change is never going to change, unless people directly involved --not fans--want them.
I seem to remember that Inoue/Baldwin, despite not making the team, agreed publicly that nationals should be the deciding factor.
No off-season is complete without the nationals conspiracy discussion.
I was sitting up in the rafters at nationals, and even with that distance, Nagasu's uRs were visible to me. Flatt, OTOH, looked better live in person that on TV. And I'm no Flatt fan.
And I can accept it that way. What I have little respect for is saying one thing and doing another. If Nationals is the deciding factor, why did the USFSA say differently?
It was all discussed in that gs thread...
Anyway, more than 3 spots per country is politically infeasible for the Olympics.
I think they just say that incase the results go completely haywire at nationals for some reason. So I mean, say potentially Flatt had the flu and skated terribly, Mirai was having an off night with her jumps, and Czisny had a clean short but her usual mediocrity of a 3 triple LP and Gao went clean so that in the end, Gao was 1st and Czisny 2nd. In that case, the USFSA might not have sent either girl to the Olympics or may have only sent one of them because the results were so unexpected and the people who placedwell did so unconvincingly, or in Gao's case, as a very young, inexperienced skater just out of junior. Rather than have Gao and Czisny go and risk them placing 12th and 15th, the USFSA could reason to send Flatt knowing that she is sick so long as she gets healthy in time. It's all just a safety net I think.
I think it's more accurate to say that some fans put out the "big talk" more than USFS ever did.
According to this post in the FSU Archives, there was a legal reason for the change:
ETA: Back to Ashley...
That particular incident at 2009 Junior Worlds reportedly was due to stress/nerves and is not a chronic or serious medical condition, AFAIK.
IIRC, it took a lot longer for the women's team to be announced in Spokane than it did for any other discipline. I'm guessing Ashley's record that season was being taken into account, but ultimately wasn't enough.
The SP is significant for many reasons, not the least of which is a chance to get in the last group and make NBC happy.
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