As fans, we all know the excitement of seeing a promising young skater debut on the elite scene, expecting a great future for them, and following their progress as they come closer and closer to the loftiest goals. The pleasure is even more sweet if they succeed in achieving those goals.
But what about those who shine as promising juniors but who fail to improve or even regress as seniors?
What about skaters who don't have the hardest jump content or the best skating skills when they first appear on the scene and don't make significant technical progress, but who catch fans' attention thanks to artistry or personality or spectacular highlight moves that don't earn many points?
What about skaters who are sound enough technically, often contending for lesser medals and sometimes winning them, but just kind of boring to watch?
What about skaters who are great in practice but are emotionally incapable of skating two good programs in competition, or ever skating a clean long program runthrough in any circumstances?
If we can't hope for high-level competition success for these skaters, should we lose interest in their careers? Advise them to retire or find other skating-related career paths?
Or can we still enjoy their best strong points and root for them to achieve the best they're each capable of?
Who are your favorites that you never expect to see in a final round at Worlds?