Yu Na Kim is great skater but not even in same league as much greater Michelle Kwan

Discussion in 'The Trash Can' started by judgejudy27, May 10, 2011.

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  1. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

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    Miki planned a 2a-3t in the FS and has been doing it most of this season, the 2a was just shaky so she couldn't pull off the 3t after it, as evidenced by the step out.

    Also, she knew what the other ladies were doing, which probably influenced her decision. She knew that Mao and Kanako did not skate their best, she knew that Yuna was only planning 6 triples in the FS and hadn't competed all season and would probably make a mistake or two, she knew that Alissa doesn't have a 3-3, that Carolina wasn't doing any 3lz in her program, and that even with their 3t-3ts Alena and Ksenia would likely not beat her so long as she was relatively clean. Further, she knew she could likely skate a clean/nearly clean LP as she had been doing them all season and had been getting good scores for them as is, winning the LP in all the competitions she competed in. Why go for a 3lz-3lo that often gets issued UR or DG calls and forces her to do 3f which is an inconsistent jump for her also prone to getting URed or DGed when she doesn't need to?

    This season, Miki didn't need the 3-3 to win, so she didn't do it. Simple as that. It's called STRATEGY and she and Morozov are experts at it. In 2007 when she needed the 3lz-3lo to win, she always went for it. Even last year at the Olympics, she went for the 3lz-3lo in the SP because she knew she needed it if she wanted to be in striking distance of a clean Kim with 3lz-3t and a clean Asada with 3a-2t.

    The difference between Miki and Yuna is twofold: 1.) Yuna's 3lz-3t (3f-3t earlier) is a very consistent and powerful combination for her. She almost always hits it, very rarely gets UR calls for it, and gets huge GOE for it. This is NOT the case with Miki's 3lz-3lo which is not consistently clean, rotated, and beautiful. Often times the landing is wild, the second jump is deemed UR or is downgraded, and even if she does land it well she doesn't get much +GOE for it.
    2.) Yuna can't bank on skating a clean FS like Miki can. The 3-3 is the least of her worries, but it seems like she always messes up the flip or the salchow and sometimes both, so she needs to always go for the 3-3 so she can afford to make a mistake or two elsewhere without taking her out of it. Also, where she already opts against doing a 3lo, she has no choice but to include the salchow and flip. Besides the 2a-3t which Miki sometimes has trouble with, with little exception you can expect her to land all the other jumps and combinations planned in her FS without fail, you can pretty much bank on her landing at least 5 clean triples. Yuna usually only lands 4 or 5 clean triples in her FS as is, so if she took out her 3-3, that would drop down to 3 or 4, which likely would have bumped her off a few podiums in her career.
     
  2. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    sorry, I meant to say 2a/3t.
     
  3. Suze

    Suze Active Member

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    Is Michelle Kwan a greater skater than Yuna? Maybe she is, maybe she's not.

    Does Michelle skate in an entirely different league (I interpret this to mean one of higher quality) from Yuna? No, I don't think that's correct.

    It may come down to how you define "greater" but I think these two women are of similar caliber in terms of artistry, competitiveness, and spirit. In terms of technical difficulty, Yuna may edge Michelle with her consistent 3-3s but as said it depends on whether you consider technical difficulty an essential piece to the title of "greater". Michelle is a better connector with the audience and I've experienced my greatest joys in skating watching her perform. Yuna hasn't really done that for me yet, though her Olympic programs were remarkable.

    If I had to choose one now, I'd say Michelle, but I can also understand why some would choose otherwise.
     
  4. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    None of this makes any sense. Miki's program layout has been the same all season long. She already plans two double axels, and hasn't had a flip in her LP for two and a half seasons, so there was absolutely no way she could have included the 3z/3r combo. Her jump order has not changed at all and there was no room to add another point-getting jump due to the new axel rule, so knowing what her competitors put down, for example that "Mao and Kanako did not skate their best" would never have changed her game plan.


    I'm not saying she should have done this, or should have done that, all I'm saying is that her jump layout is very early to mid 90's in 2011 and that's pretty :blah: coming from the first female skater credited with landing a quad. I think they at least need to find a way to encourage skaters to try every jump in the repertoire. One of the things I used to like most about free programs is that they showcased the versatility and well-rounded qualities of a skater. Not the case today.

    Remember when you pretty much HAD to do a lutz in the sp or forget about top 10? That may have been a bit extreme, but I sort of understand that mentality now. This isn't always true, but a skater who has mastered the lutz jump USUALLY has most of the other triples under their belt, which makes them much more likely to produce a good free skate. For the past several years we've had skaters crack the top 3 with toe loops, salchows, and loops only to embarrass themselves in the free when they can't produce the big jumps and drop like rocks.

    While I like that CoP has made the sp more about quality and technique, it has made freeskates incredibly stale and one-dimensional and, well, not "free." I wish they could keep the hyper critical aspects of CoP in the short, but maybe widen the scope a little bit in the free program so that every element doesn't have to be level 4. The free program should be more about variety and artistic impression. Can you imagine telling Beethoven to write a symphony in which EVERY measure and phrase were as virtuosic as possible, or ask Baryshnikov to choreograph a dance where EVERY step was "level 4" difficulty. Who would want to watch or listen to that? JMHO, but even a beautiful program like Yuna's Olympic LP looks somewhat calculated and mapped out. A great artist knows how to cover up the seams and blend elements so beautifully that you may not recognize their difficulty and just see them as artistically expressive elements. That kind of thinking just doesn't work when you have to count every rotation, change of edge, etc...Sometimes you have to let the artistry come first and let the technique follow. And yes, I've strayed far, far away from the topic...:lol:
     
  5. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    :respec: whole post.

    COP has some good intentions, but overall it holds skating back BOTH technically and artistically in many ways.
     
  6. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

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    The skaters who do toeloops and loops in the SP and have lesser in content in the FS dont always drop like rocks. Examples would be Kiira, Laura, Ksenia, and Carolina this season, who all do 3t-3t and 3lo in the SP and then do one flip and no lutz (Caro and Ksenia) or one lutz and no flip (Laura) and still do just fine, even win World medals. Kiira does a flip and a lutz in her FS but she can never really land either cleanly and would probably be better off leaving one of them out.

    This is why I get upset when people say Miki is being so safe and conservative. None of the ladies this season have been attempting ambitious content this season except for Mao. I know 3t-3t is a triple-triple but when you accompany it with a triple loop it isn't that ambitious. Yuna doesn't even do a 3lo which is not even a very difficult triple and didn't do a 2a-3t at worlds either. Alissa doesn't have a 3-3 even in practice and can't do a simple 3sal. Cynthia does a 3t out of steps in her SP and doesn't do a 3flip in her programs either. This season all the ladies have been attempting pretty pathetic content and Miki's jump layouts are in no way near the simplest. So give her a break, or if you want to bash her, bash everyone else attempting simpler content and placing well (there are many of them) too.
     
  7. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    I'm blasting everyone. I thought that was clear? When I say CoP has made ladies skating (and don't get me started on the pairs...:scream:) stale, I meant all the ladies.

    :lol::lol:You use Ksenia Makarova as a good example of someone who does well in the short and holds her own in the free???? :rofl:

    I guess you didn't watch Russian Nationals, Europeans, or Worlds.
     
  8. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

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    Yeah but if Ksenia landed all her jumps in the FS at those competitions, she WOULD have done well, even with her content. And she still placed pretty well at all those events considering the mistakes she made.

    And I wasn't addressing you specifically, there just seems to be a lot of Miki hate for winning worlds recently.
     
  9. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    Miki is just a jumper though. She isnt particularly good at anything except for jumps. So to win a major title she should have to jump up a storm, and if someone like her wins with so so jumping then someone is sorely wrong. Either way the womens field has hit its lowest point in decades this season. Whether that is due to the skaters themselves, the scoring system, or what, it is little surprise people are wondering what is wrong.

    You are now (correctly) saying Ksenia would have done well with what she has now which is basically limited jumps and stroking from element to element. Yet I have to agree, she is still a better skater than Leonova who nearly medalled, so if she held it all together probably would have. Well doesnt that say it all, and speak to both the quality of the ladies field now as well as the major flaws of the scoring system.
     
  10. pinky166

    pinky166 Well-Known Member

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    ^^ Precisely. But what can you do? Hopefully things will perk up in coming years heading into Sochi. It seems like there are lots of talented jumpers coming up through the ranks though considering the number of 3-3s, 2a-3ts, and (planned) 7 triple FS we saw at junior worlds. Of course, puberty could take those 3-3s away, but I really hope not.

    Also, regarding Miki as a jumper, I agree, but I will say this: Miki jumped her way into the top tier of ladies skating in 06-07, and then once she established herself as part of that group, she's jumped up less of a storm since and relied more on her reputation as a World Champion/top tier skater/consistent performer to keep her marks up high enough to challenge for world medals and titles. This season, no one else was being very ambitious so she was able to win just by staying on her feet and reeling off a few really high quality triples. This season was not typical though, or only typical in the sense that the post olympic season lull was definitely present.
     
    Last edited: May 14, 2011
  11. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

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    Re: Ksenia, that's the point. If she isn't comfortable doing the flip and lutz (which she originally had in her fp) in the sp, she clearly isn't comfortable doing them in the long, either. The same can be said for Kiira. My original point is that if you have the flip and/or lutz in the sp, the odds are you have also mastered the "lesser" jumps. I don't know what part of my argument you aren't understanding.

    Oh, and you can't quote me and then say you weren't addressing me specifically :rofl: That's not how that works.
     
  12. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    I think this year Miki actually achieved a better quality of interpretation than what I have seen in the last few years. There was more attention to detail and I could relate to how she was using the music. And that is one thing I have been really critical about her in the past. So she put in a more complete and artistically satisfying performance for myself this year. And it is one of the reasons why she won the title.
     
  13. dinakt

    dinakt Well-Known Member

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    I very much agree. I find myself getting weary of constant arms going in all directions with no apparent reason but to get levels, and general feeling of clutter from many programs. Interpretation needs air. LPs would benefit from a slight relaxation of COP requirements.
     
  14. skfan

    skfan Member

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    agree with this. she isn't going to be mao or yeonah but i don't think it's fair to label miki 'just a jumper.' her exhibitions really moved me.
     
  15. ks777

    ks777 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with this. Miki could still improve on her speed and add more transitions to her skating but she skated beautifully at worlds this year.
     
  16. os168

    os168 Active Member

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    Isn't it interesting, how all Ladies tries to work harder to have more artistic programs than ever before, and some even tried to bring their 3:3s? Perhaps it is a measure of Yuna's impact on the sport at status quo AS LONG as she competes.

    I am personally a big fan of both Yuna and Michelle and believe they have established unique leagues of their own that are simply incomparable. If one is to measure greatness according to impact like JudgeJudy27 implies, it is far too early to tell as Yuna's career and legacy is still to be played out. Stats matters, but only so much, when things are never black and white in figure skating.

    According to various media sources, Yuna's impact is already felt by the young skaters of tomorrow who list her as a favourite skater; and for the current crop of skaters, we already know how leader of a sport can shape everyone's competitive programs, or how COP rules can change (controversial) yearly to even out the level playing field.

    While Michelle has already established an incredible legacy and Yuna is still to yet to fulfil hers at only age 20, the main thing that separate the two is that Yuna clearly idolises Michelle and being a humble bug, she's likely to find this whole comparison mortifying and highly embarrassing.

    I am inclined to think Michelle's legacy is beyond medals. She inspired a girl (+ a whole generation of skaters like Mirai) from nowhere with a performance that did not win her the gold at the Olympics. Yet to Yuna Kim, it was the moment she dreamt to becoming a skater just like Michelle - one that people remembers and why medals is not the most important thing in the world. Yuna then accomplished her own historical OGM performance at Vancouver with such a spectacular once in a life time skate even the best of the best would be envy of. She did it when it count, and that should be one of the most important thing when assessing a sporting legacy.

    Michelle's 'silver' may have partially shaped Yuna's view towards competitions and skating philosophy at a young age. This was a quote from her Korean Cosmopolitan interview conducted when she was just 16 years old

    "I don't cling to winning. If I showed a mature performance, I am satisfied with that. Even when the results are not great, if I enjoyed that moment, I think that's a great event of its own. It's most important to . . . me to approve my own performance and be immersed in the process of it. Winning over someone comes after that."

    Without the right mature attitude, mental strength in one so young, it is hard to survive the trials, tribulations and pressures of the figure skating on talent alone. As for this abstract notion of league? While we can continuously debate on who, when, what, hows; they are really just noise when it is only possible to weigh the pros and the cons in at least one or two decades from now, can their impact and legacy be felt and appraised with any true data. And it should not be selective data from just the English speaking forums alone.

    In summary. For now Michelle is the greater but she did have a decade head start with the USFSA fully behind her, while Yuna hasn't even got a figure skating rink in Korea yet :)
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2011
  17. miki88

    miki88 New Member

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    Miki's SP was an improvement but her LP wasn't much of a deviation from what she usually put out. The only difference is that she's much more consistent this season.

    I'll wager to say that the rule changes made after 2007 actually played to Kim's advantage. The CoP changes its rules almost every year and Kim definitely benefitted from some of those changes as well as other skaters.

    I also think Judgejudy has a point about Michelle having more competition than Yuna. Throughout her long career, Michelle not only had to contend with strong international rivals but she had strong rivals nipping at her heels within her own federation. Coming from a small federation has its drawbacks but it also has its advantages in that you don't have to worry that much about upcoming upstarts in your own country.
     
  18. os168

    os168 Active Member

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    All good points, but these are circumstances outside skater's control. Should she apologise for having better techniques? Welcome to the fun that is the COP groovy train when conductors are prone to play musical chairs with first class passenger signs.

    But seriously, even if Yuna compete in the US nationals every year, do you seriously think there are any US competitor at her level can be a threat? Michelle had it much tougher (therefore kudos). Sorry, but I just can't see any current crop of US ladies can do much damage, especially Yuna hasn't even been off a podium at world class level her entire senior career. Imho it is likely she'd be able at least to qualify or even to win.

    As for risk of injury from having to enter 1 more competition, she is lucky by circumstance. However, if she is to choose from having good facilities, great coach, strong federations to support her and she can train at home, to not having to do a national competition, it is a no brainer which option she'd pick.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2011
  19. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    Michelle winning 8 straight U.S titles and 9 overall is one of the most amazing feats in all of sports. She had Lipinski- a World and Olympic Champion, Hughes- an Olympic Champion, Cohen- a many time World or Olympic medalist, and perennial gold medal pick, amongst others as competition.
     
  20. miki88

    miki88 New Member

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    LOL. Where in my opinion was I implying that it was in her control? Your original statement about the yearly rules "leveling out the playing field" seemed to suggest that it they do not favor her. So I was merely pointing out that this isn't always the case. The rules change so abitrarily that sometimes it ends up benefiting a skater and other times it doesn't.

    I don't see how you can make a comparison between the current US crop and those during Michelle's career cause if you hadn't noticed, the US field is nowhere near as strong as it was during its heyday.
     
  21. os168

    os168 Active Member

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    I feel like we are talking around in circles. What you just said is what i have meant and you have now turn around and accuse me for not understand what I have written.

    Hmm... anyways, these are 2 skaters of different eras, it is lucky for me as fan of them both that they never have to compete against each other! E.g Yuna against Michelle during the US nationals and WCs, and Michelle during the Olympics. Whatever era rules, it would be battles of Titans. (Mindful of the fact the type of programs, how they train and work on the elements will all be different according to the era which they compete in.)

    What continues to interest me however is the fact the 2 top ladies IRL are sticking together doing shows among other things, yet on skating forums, they are constantly being pitted against each other. The thought Yuna is worthy to be compared to Michelle has always thrilled me in an adventurous and playful spirit, then much guilt afterwards for nothing good can come of it.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2011
  22. amaro

    amaro Active Member

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    And judgejudy27 who created this nonsensical thread is not one of the judges for sure :)
     
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  23. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    But according to others YuNa is over the hill, past it and should give up because she is a rapid downhill slide. :D

    However, seriously your posts are very articulate and bring balance to the discussion. Thanks for your contribution.
     
  24. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    Yu Na does not have to give it up, but she clearly cannot continue what she was doing this year. The World Championship was embarassing for someone of her status, both as far as her performances and the actual result (yes 2nd but losing to someone like Miki Ando who didnt even skate that great is an embarassing outcome for her, sorry). The field can only get alot stronger from her, considering it hit its lowest point in decades and all the potentially very good up and comers coming up, some atleast who will materialize into something much better than any of what we saw in Moscow. So if she is serious about competing for World and Olympic Golds in the future, which a skater of her stature should be if they are going to continue, she clearly needs to rededicate herself in a way she did not do this year. Afterall even her defenders in this thread have not denied my claim she is about 55% the skater she was in Vancouver at best right now, especialy how she skated at Worlds (which in fairness was probably even worse than she might have on another day even in her current shape).

    And I doubt she will continue in this vein too, as I am pretty sure she feels the same way. No point in competing as a shadow of yourself. So at some point soon, even if apparently not this fall (she is skipping the grand prix again) she will either completely rededicate herself or she will turn pro and stop competing.
     
  25. annie_mg

    annie_mg Active Member

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    Will you stop it with all the 'shadow of herself/55% of the skater she was in Vancouver thing'? Yes she wasn't in the shape she was in Vancouver BUT do you think that any other skater would have been able to keep up with all the training and the sacrifices if they had won the OGM? I'm honestly grateful that we got to see her one more time. I never thought she would have continued after winning last year. I dont care if she's better or worse than Michelle Kwan, she dominated the ladies field for the past 3 years and she had a decent performance at Worlds considering her past year. It's not like she finished 10th. You're a Yu Na hater/ basher, so just call it an end. The whole point of your thread is to take credit off Yu Na. Well guess what, she'll keep the credit she deserves despite your bashing posts.
     
  26. Aussie Willy

    Aussie Willy Well-Known Member

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    She probably realises that she wasn't in the same form as last year as most of us agree. However we are not being nasty and mean about it like you seem to be.
     
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  27. duane

    duane New Member

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    Nothing against Michelle, but the national judges are extremely biased, and for a many-times defending champion, the other competitors must not just skate better, but blow the champion off the court (well, rink). Looking at the history of the US Nationals, there have been many similar streaks. Maribel Vinson won 9 titles, and likely would have won 10 consecutive titles had she not missed competing in 34; Gretchen Merrill won 6 consecutive titles; Albright, Fleming, Lynn 5. Seems only when the defending champions retired did it allow others the opportunity to became national champion.
     
  28. giselle23

    giselle23 Active Member

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    I can remember several times when Sasha beat Michelle in the SP at Nationals. I think the judges would have been only too happy to award Sasha (or Sarah Hughes) the title, but Michelle always beat them, either through her own stellar performance or as a result of mistakes by her competitors (especially Sasha). The existence of streaks at Nationals just indicates to me that there was a dominant skater during the era. Who was even nearly as good as Janet Lynn, for instance, during her era? Or Peggy Fleming? I think it's quite a feat for Michelle to have won 8 National titles in a row--and that is supported by what has happened since she left the scene. Only Alissa has repeated, and not in consecutive years.
     
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  29. judgejudy27

    judgejudy27 Well-Known Member

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    Hughes wasnt ever going to beat Michelle with both skating cleanly, so the outcome was always in Michelle's hands. Unless maybe she pulled out the triple-triples, but she never did that at Nationals for whatever reason.

    I agree the judges were willing to award Sasha the National title any year from 2003 onwards, but she never delivered in the free skate. Then again 2003 and 2004 would have been very close even if she had since Michelle put in inspired performances as she usually does at Nationals. In 2002 Sasha did put it together and lost but she wasnt a good enough skater yet then.
     
  30. duane

    duane New Member

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    I remember a competition where Sarah and Sasha placed higher than Michelle in the SP. But tho I don't recall the exact competition, I thought Michelle should have placed no higher than 4th. She had a much easier 3toe instead of the 3flp that her competitors did, and she also fell during the program. The judges would never, tho, place Michelle less than 3rd after the SP, because then she wouldn't be in control of her own destiny in the LP.

    Other than the above, I don't recall any National competition when I thought so-and-so was robbed (tho my interest in FS diminished greatly after the early 2000's), so Michelle and the other National champions likely deserved their wins. But I've always felt that National judges (of most countries) were more biased (and political) in who they wanted to represent them as champion.
     
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