What must Mirai do to challenge the Gracie-Ashley-Polina triumvirate?

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by olympic, Aug 16, 2014.

  1. douglasottawa

    douglasottawa New Member

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    I think those of you who are just writing Ashley off completely, do so at your own peril. I am not a fan of her or her skating style, but she is a fighter, was up until Gold's surge late last season hands down the best U.S skater for over 2 years, and even though Edmunds is being hyped above now was below Wagner at both Olympics and worlds. Gold was aided by some ridiculous PCS to beat Wagner, even with her technical issues, at both Olympics and worlds. She wont keep getting those if she doesn't start delivering medals for the U.S and the promise she is thought to have.
     
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  2. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Julia, Elena, Anna, Liza, and Vera

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    I am not writing off Ashley, but I think her margin of error has decreased at this point, considering the competition she will be facing within the USA. Gold and Edmunds already have better jumps than her. Younger skaters will challenge her with 3-3 combinations. She is more beatable now than she was before, and next time she finishes off the podium, the USFSA may not place her on the world team. I know this thread is about Mirai, not Ashley, but Mirai could become one of the many challengers if she develops consistency in her jumps. Mirai does not have a lot of time though; at 21 she needs to reestablish herself in the eyes of the judges, to have a few successful seasons and trips to world championships.
     
  3. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    To be fair, the nationals skate was Mirai at her best in years. Her recent competitions before that were significantly worse than her nationals performance, which was a major step up compared to several years of underwhelming skates (hence her's and her fans' obvious joy). She was certainly the better skater at her peak in 2010, but getting back to that level would be a big reach, if it's even possible at all. The "If she just does/gets this..." claims have been in these threads for years. While it would be wonderful if it actually happened, it's not something many people are going to expect anymore.
     
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  4. coppertop1

    coppertop1 Active Member

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    Why is Mirai URing her jumps so much? What part of her technique is letting her down?
     
  5. dawnie

    dawnie Active Member

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    I agree, if Mirai placed 2nd, she would have been sent. Polina really spoiled the party and I don't think anyone was expecting her to reach the podium at Nationals, let alone making the Olympic and World team. She wasn't on my radar before the competition that's for sure. Gracie and Ashley were predicted as locks for the team and Mirai, Christina, and Agnes were talked about as the ones expecting to fight for the last spot.
     
  6. RD

    RD Well-Known Member

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    Become Russian, perhaps? :nopryde:

    Anyway, being serious, she can't worry about Wagner or Gold or Edmunds or anyone else. Nor can she dwell on being passed up for the Sochi team in favor of Wagner. Regardless of whether one agrees with it or not - for better or worse, it's something that happened, it's now in the past, and she must now move forward. What can Nagasu do with her OWN skating to get back to 2010 shape (or better, if possible)? A 2010-or-higher level Nagasu can give any of those 3 a challenge (although a 100% clean Gold will be tough for any fellow American to beat).

    As for weakest link - contrary to popular opinion, right now it is Edmunds, not Wagner. That may change soon (or later), but as of right now Gold and Wagner have produced superior results at both the Olympic and World level. Edmunds needs a little more experience before she gets there.

    ETA
    I remember a fanboy/girl or two saying stuff about Edmunds beforehand but she was a surprise to most. But even after the SP, as she sat in 2nd place, I don't think many had her remaining there. Most thought at least Wagner would pass her up, and if she messed up, she'd take herself out of it. That's usually what happens anyway with these phenoms - pressure's on for the FS and whoops! That was the real monkey wrench in the whole scenario- Edmunds actually holding on to 2nd after the FS.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2014
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  7. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    It's not quite that simple. A skater like Gold, for example, is able to duplicate her 2axel by combining it with a triple toe in one pass in addition to having a 3sal so basically it gives them a one jump advantage over someone like Mirai. This was one of the factors that helped Sotnikova win the technical mark over Yuna at the games. So it isn't the same as "swapping it out" because almost all of the top ladies in the world have 2axels in their LPs in addition to 7 triples. Pre-2010/2011 the rules were different, so skaters like Yuna and Mirai were able to simply substitute a problematic triple for a slightly less valuable third 2axel without as much of a hit. This is no longer the case as they have been limited to 2.
     
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  8. mag

    mag Well-Known Member

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    I don't know enough about technique to answer, but I do suspect that the underrotations have always been there. What has changed over the years is the calling and the camera angle. If anything, they have become worse, but I don't think she has ever really had clean triples. For this reason I think it will be difficult to correct at this stage in her career. Hopefully I am wrong and skating in Colorado will help. I guess we'll see in the fall.
     
  9. coppertop1

    coppertop1 Active Member

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    She has, correcting it late in her career is difficult. Is she training with Kristy Krall?
     
  10. lahaa968

    lahaa968 Active Member

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    I remember Tara Lipinski saying something about how extreme flexibility killed the snap of your jumps, and how it was important to not go down too far down the flexibility route. Look at some skaters with chronic UR (or even jump) issues: Mao (very flexible), Mirai (very flexible), Caroline Zhang (very flexible), Sasha (extremely flexible), Sarah Hughes (quite flexible). Conversely, some skaters like the Kween or Kerrigan weren't particularly flexible (with the exception of the spirals), which explained their solid jumping technique, especially for Michelle (and for Michelle's consistency).

    I'm sure there's also a psychological factor of self doubt involved; like Ashley, Mirai doesn't jump particularly high, so she needs and the speed and tight air position she can get to complete the revolutions. When you're a little nervous or doubtful, I would imagine you're skating a bit more cautiously, thus slower, and then you're also pretty tight in terms of muscles and knees, which make the air position that much harder to attain correctly. So the lack of speed, combined with tight muscles and knees, make an UR or downgrade inevitable.

    The only skater who pretty much almost never (or at least 95% of the time) gets under rotated or downgraded is Carolina; she doesn't jump very high at all (she's quite tall for a female skater), but her speed saves her and her air position is pretty finessed. Maybe Mirai needs to work on that a little? Here her leg looks a little wrapped and maybe her arms could be less square....then again I'm no expert in this field either.
     
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  11. RockTheTassel

    RockTheTassel Well-Known Member

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    She's been working with Tom Zakrajsek, but I don't think he's been confirmed as her full time coach (yet).
     
  12. jarvalwest

    jarvalwest New Member

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    At this point a triple axel or quad toe is her only hope.
     
  13. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

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    But a case like Gold and Sotnikova doesn't apply to Mirai because she doesn't do/probably will never plan to do 2 triple-triples or a 3-3 and a 2axel-3toe in her LP. What you describe is correct for Gold and Sotnikova, but in the case of Mirai, the swap would be just as simple as putting a triple salchow where the double axel is.
     
  14. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

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    But a case like Gold and Sotnikova doesn't apply to Mirai because she doesn't do/probably will never plan to do 2 triple-triples or a 3-3 and a 2axel-3toe in her LP. What you describe is correct for Gold and Sotnikova, but in the case of Mirai, the swap would be just as simple as putting a triple salchow where the double axel is.
     
  15. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

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    But a case like Gold and Sotnikova doesn't apply to Mirai because she doesn't do/probably will never plan to do 2 triple-triples or a 3-3 and a 2axel-3toe in her LP. What you describe is correct for Gold and Sotnikova, but in the case of Mirai, the swap would be just as simple as putting a triple salchow where the double axel is.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2014
  16. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

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    Double post.
     
  17. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    Wrong, Mirai needs only a 2axel/3toe in her program to achieve 7 triples and 2 2axels. This is a combo she has had in her arsenal for a long time. She doesn't even have to do a 3/3, just look at Ashley's long program from 2014 worlds as one possible example (there are several ways she could achieve this). What you said earlier is that she's only losing one point, but compared to the rest she is losing more, as in one jump behind the rest.
     
  18. Karpenko

    Karpenko Well-Known Member

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    She needs to verk. :TT1:
     
  19. Marco

    Marco Missing Ziggy

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    I don't think Nagasu has attempted 7 triples in a long program since at least 2009 when she dropped the sal. One can't legitimately attempt 7 triples without both a 3axel and a 3sal. A plausible layout is this (in random order)

    3lutz
    3flip2toe2loop
    3flip
    3loop - 2axel
    2axel3toe
    3sal
    3loop or 3toe
     
  20. olympic

    olympic Well-Known Member

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    I would say there is a psychological factor in adding a 3sal, though. It would show TPTB she has 7 triples in the LP and tangible proof that she is committed to moving up. The sport is very subjective and 7 triples vs. 6 triples might give her a boost in GOE or PCS by judges beyond that 1 point, who would want to reward a skater who is 1) a crowd favorite; and 2) so dedicated.
     
  21. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Julia, Elena, Anna, Liza, and Vera

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    Carolina is not superflexible, so that only supports your (or Tara's theory). However-

    Examples against this theory:
    Sasha never URed her jumps and she was VERY flexible.
    Julia Lipnitskaya does not ur the jumps (edge issues are separate) and she is VERY flexible too.
    I don't see Hughes as very flexible; may be a little better than average, but she had jump issues.
    Denise Biellman, one of the very flexible skaters never had jump issues.

    I don't believe there is a direct correlation between flexibility and jumps. Not many skaters are extremely flexible, so it's a small sample, and many non-flexible (by FS standards) skaters have jump issues (particularly ladies). IMO jump issues in general are common, probably because those habits were formed early and it's hard to get rid of them.
     
  22. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    I was responding to smarts, who didn't factor in the number of jump windows when calculating the point loss by omitting the triple Sal. I assume you meant a "3axel OR a 3sal" to get 7 triples...with a 3axel, 8 triples are possible.
     
  23. VIETgrlTerifa

    VIETgrlTerifa Well-Known Member

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    This is like the third time I heard Carolina didn't have a lot of height in her jumps. Maybe her height makes her jumps pop, but they always seemed to be a good size. I know she tended to have a lot of distance on her jumps. That could be why.
     
  24. smarts1

    smarts1 Well-Known Member

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    Yes, Mirai only needs a 2axel-3toe to achieve 7 triples (if she adds the salchow back in), but you're wrong in that it would only have one double axel and not two. Thus, she is losing only a point.

    For example, this is her current jump layout:
    3 flip-2toe
    2axel-3toe
    3lutz
    3loop-2toe-2loop
    3flip
    3loop
    2axel (and this is precisely where she would swap in the 3 salchow, giving her an extra base value of 1 point)
     
  25. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    No, as Marco pointed out, and as I did with the Wagner example, Mirai can add a second double axel in many ways, such as doing it in sequence with a 3loop, as she has already done in her 2009/2010 programs.
     
  26. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    It is all relative. I think she has decent size jumps. Not huge though, and not as big as say Sotnikova or Yu Na Kim. I would say her jumps are just a shade bigger than say Michelle Kwan at her technical peak. The other quality of her jumps are superior to the height (apart from the awful consistency, and sometimes shaky landings of even her good/clean jumps).
     
  27. giselle23

    giselle23 Active Member

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    If she can execute this layout (with the salchow), and if she skates a clean short program, she will be on the Nationals podium. Most likely it would be at Ashley's expense. :( But Polina and Gracie will have to execute their 3-3s (and their flips). 2015 Nationals will be very interesting.
     
  28. Vash01

    Vash01 Fan of Julia, Elena, Anna, Liza, and Vera

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    IMO she needs a 3f-3t in order to be competitive. I don't know how hard it will be for her. However, 2A3t could do as well.
     
  29. yunatripleflip

    yunatripleflip Member

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    I don't see Nagasu ever beating a clean Ashley again, regardless what she does.
     
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  30. dawnie

    dawnie Active Member

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    And I don't see Ashley beating a clean Gracie and Polina again...