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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    Rachael's skating isn't my cup of tea but i commend her for being one tough competitor. If only some of the other american girls had her nerves we would still have 3 spots at World. We need a skater with Rachaels toughness but Mira Nagasu's talent. That's what is holding back US skaters at the moment.
    Love your post. A skater part Rachael and part Mirai, wouldn't that be a great skater. The only skater that coms close that I've seen skate is Courtney Hicks. Although, I don't think she is quite as talented as Mirai, but she has time to polish her skating. But she seems to be a good competitor. We will see once she hits the senior GP.

    I just want to see someone who is not afraid to compete. Is there anyone who wants to be Worlds Champion.

  2. #42
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    The only skater that [comes] close that I've seen skate is Courtney Hicks. Although, I don't think she is quite as talented as Mirai, but she has time to polish her skating. But she seems to be a good competitor. We will see once she hits the senior GP.

    Right, I say unproven until they're at the Senior level and have dealt with the big-time pressure.

  3. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flying Camel View Post
    Love your post. A skater part Rachael and part Mirai, wouldn't that be a great skater. The only skater that coms close that I've seen skate is Courtney Hicks. Although, I don't think she is quite as talented as Mirai, but she has time to polish her skating. But she seems to be a good competitor. We will see once she hits the senior GP.

    I just want to see someone who is not afraid to compete. Is there anyone who wants to be Worlds Champion.
    Maybe Christina Gao or Agnes Zawadzki. I know neither is as tough a competitor as Rachael yet, but they aren't headcases either, and in terms of jumps, they are very talented, probably even more talented Mirai in that area. Agnes is a good spinner too, Christina not as much, but she's really improved rapidly over the past few seasons and if that trend continues, watch out. Both girls also seemed to have taken puberty in stride, which is promising, and at this point the growing pains are probably behind them. They also seemed very determined and driven which obviously helps.

    Yasmin Siraj and Vanessa Lam have potential too, but where they are so tiny still it may be too soon to tell. The same goes for Courtney Hicks.

  4. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    Maybe Christina Gao or Agnes Zawadzki. I know neither is as tough a competitor as Rachael yet, but they aren't headcases either
    Zawadzki certainly struggled in the FS this season...

  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    Maybe Christina Gao or Agnes Zawadzki. I know neither is as tough a competitor as Rachael yet, but they aren't headcases either, and in terms of jumps, they are very talented, probably even more talented Mirai in that area. Agnes is a good spinner too, Christina not as much, but she's really improved rapidly over the past few seasons and if that trend continues, watch out. Both girls also seemed to have taken puberty in stride, which is promising, and at this point the growing pains are probably behind them. They also seemed very determined and driven which obviously helps.

    Yasmin Siraj and Vanessa Lam have potential too, but where they are so tiny still it may be too soon to tell. The same goes for Courtney Hicks.
    In discussing US ladies, it will be also important to know when or if Flatt and Czisny will retire before Sochi '14. From the articles posted about both here and in the most recent Czisny thread, it sounds like Czisny is most likely to retire once she hits good programs at Worlds. It also sounds like Flatt will most likely stick around to Sochi, but will scale back competitions while at Stanford, ie - not competing on the GP circuit.

    Let's also not forget Wagner, who is already planning programs for next season.

  6. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    Her "nerves" didn't exactly help us out at last year's Worlds...
    So you are the US?
    3539 and counting.

    Slightly Wounding Banana list cont: MacMadame.

  7. #47

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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    Her "nerves" didn't exactly help us out at last year's Worlds...
    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    Rachel's nerves may not have helped us, per se....but Mirai's nerves definitely hurt us.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    IMO, Rachael peaked at the Olympics and looked tired by the time of 2010 Worlds. Mirai skated well at the Olympics, had the impressive 1st place SP at 2010 Worlds and then faltered in her FS (so it turns out that she lost her own spot to 2011 Worlds).
    Yeah, I give both girls a total pass for last year's Worlds. I mean, I was bummed for sure (would have been great to see Mirai on the World podium and the US get three spots for 2011 Worlds), but everyone was training and aiming to peak at the Olympics; they must have been sooo exhausted (and maybe even a little injured) by the time Worlds rolled around.

    Some skaters, like Olympic champion Evan Lysacek and Olympian Johnny Weir, sat out this season altogether, knowing the 2014 Sochi Games are three years away. Others went with simpler routines, “which is why many of them are not on the world team,” Zakrajsek said, adding Flatt “managed to push forward” in joining national champion Alissa Czisny at worlds. “That pressure, she knows how to handle that probably better than anyone.”
    Not particular a TZ fan, but I really dislike fragmented quotes like this. It's only too easy for the writer to fill in the blanks in unintended ways and take the quotes out of context, make them more controversial than they are.
    Last edited by Cheylana; 03-28-2011 at 10:26 PM.
    "Marge, if you're going to get mad at me every time I do something stupid, then I guess I'm just going to have to stop doing stupid things!" - Homer Simpson in the Mr. Plow episode

  8. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    Zawadzki certainly struggled in the FS this season...
    But she delivered when it counted - at nationals and Junior Worlds. And last season she was really consistent.

  9. #49
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flying Camel View Post
    Love your post. A skater part Rachael and part Mirai, wouldn't that be a great skater. The only skater that coms close that I've seen skate is Courtney Hicks. Although, I don't think she is quite as talented as Mirai, but she has time to polish her skating. But she seems to be a good competitor. We will see once she hits the senior GP.

    I just want to see someone who is not afraid to compete. Is there anyone who wants to be Worlds Champion.
    I'm hoping too that Courtney is the real deal. She seems to be a good competitor and doesn't seem to meltdown but next season when great things are expected of her we will see. But she has talent to go along with being a good competitor and i like how she attacks the ice.

  10. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    But [Zawadzki] delivered when it counted - at nationals and Junior Worlds. And last season she was really consistent.
    Whole different ballgame now. She's competing with the best in the world. More is expected of her (given her talent). More people are paying attention to her. Slate's wiped clean IMO. She's got to prove herself AS A SENIOR.

    At least, as you mentioned, she went on an upward trajectory as the season progressed. We'll see next year where she ends up.
    Last edited by RD; 03-29-2011 at 12:24 AM.

  11. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    And last season she [Zawadzki] was really consistent.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    I'm hoping too that Courtney [Hicks] is the real deal. She seems to be a good competitor and doesn't seem to meltdown but next season when great things are expected of her we will see.
    Zawadzki was "really consistent" as a junior in 2009-10 (Nationals and her Jr. Worlds FS) and that's what Hicks will be aiming for when she competes as a junior internationally on the JGP, I assume, next season. The true test will come at Nationals (senior) and senior internationals, which Zawadzki experienced this season, learned from, and will build on for the future. There's no need to rush Hicks or place prematurely high expectations on her just yet, IMO.

  12. #52
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    ^ Bingo.

    High expectations almost always the kiss of death. (Meissner, Zhang anyone?)

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    ^ Bingo.

    High expectations almost always the kiss of death. (Meissner, Zhang anyone?)
    Zhang is obviously a prime example for your point, but Meissner? National and World Champ? Olympian? Clearly, she was indeed kissed with death.

  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    ^ Bingo.

    High expectations almost always the kiss of death. (Meissner, Zhang anyone?)
    Meissner was a world champ and us champ

  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    Maybe not but more was expected of Mirai then Rachael after the Olympics and with her being in first place a good skate would have given back those 3 spots. Instead she skated scared and collapsed and couldn't even hang on for a top 4 finish.
    Rachael was the US Champ. The point is, both girls bombed, but for some reason Mirai gets blamed and Rachael doesn't and we still think of her as "the rock" even though she was the lowest finisher.

  16. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    Meissner was a world champ and us champ
    I think the OP's point was that Meissner could have been an Olympic champ or one of the more decorated stars of the sport had she not been expected to do too much, too soon. Plus, she was only 16 when she went from being a dark horse to a champion, and I think that's a lot for a 16-year-old.

  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by Triple Butz View Post
    Meissner was a world champ and us champ
    My point is what happened AFTER that.

    Winning that world championship vaulted her from extreme underdog to the next leader in US skating, particularly as Kwan and Cohen bowed out. She was seen as the one who would lead us into 2010. She did ok in 2006-07, barely eeking out the 2007 US title over Hughes, but it got to her after that. By 2008 the current crop of American skaters emerged, and then it was literally Kimmie who?

    With Zhang, it was the exact opposite- being hyped as the Next Big Thing before she could truly prove herself. While she did have respectable results in her first 2 years as a senior, she was expected to become a contender, and potential Olympian. Major problem, of course, was her technique. Then she completely unraveled under the Olympic season pressure. Again failed to live up to expectations

  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    Rachael's skating isn't my cup of tea but i commend her for being one tough competitor. If only some of the other american girls had her nerves we would still have 3 spots at World. We need a skater with Rachaels toughness but Mira Nagasu's talent. That's what is holding back US skaters at the moment.
    But that's the problem. One reason why RF doesn't improve is that she and her coach think she IS that skater.

  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    ^ Bingo.

    High expectations almost always the kiss of death. (Meissner, Zhang anyone?)
    Or puberty and bad jump technique was the kiss of death for Meissner and Zhang? I'm sure those were bigger issues than expectations...

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    Quote Originally Posted by pinky166 View Post
    Or puberty and bad jump technique was the kiss of death for Meissner and Zhang? I'm sure those were bigger issues than expectations...
    I think it was REALLY different in both cases:

    Zhang's big expectations came when she was about as tall as a yardstick and equally as wide-she was really tiny and had some impressive moves for a kid her age/size. But her technique wasn't there. As for pressure, notice that her downfall happened while she was trying to qualify to the Olympics. I think she's definitely received some pressure last year (and probably this year, too, and Tammy Gambill probably received more of the blame for Caroline's GP outings than anyone).

    Meissner was more of an expectations and injuries situation: had she not won the World title, I think she would have lasted longer because her other commitments would have been relatively nonexistent (ie shows and other things World Champs do).

    It's not really a fair comparison.

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