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  1. #21

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    Thanks for reminding me of who D/L are. I can't believe I forgot about them, I think they have great potential.

  2. #22
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    The 10th or 12th at nationals don't make much difference. Usually a skater in this position won't be given a spot. Nagasu seems to be treated as a second seed. Therefore they couldn't invite both Czisny and Nagasu to SA. Flatt is already disfavored. They could invite one of Gao, Zawadzki and Wagner but Caroline Zhang was chosen somehow. Probably because she lives in LA area (which means cheap to invite) and her name still can attract some spectators. I guess the ladies' TBD goes to somebody like Kiri Baga. They can save some JGP spots for more "promising" skaters.

  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    Oh, silly me! Thanks for that correction.

    In that case, I really cannot understand why Bulanghui or Forte weren't selected ahead of Zhang.
    Maybe USFS is counting on a local fan base to help boost ticket sales.
    My job requires me to be a juggler, but that does not mean that I enjoy working with clowns.

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    Actually, Bulanhagui placed 10th to Zhang's 12th at Nationals.
    Really. Wow.

    That just shows how far Zhang has fallen...

    But anyway, when you compare the two- Zhang has FAR more international experience (even though neither have been to worlds) and recognition. She has competed against the best. I guess when it comes down to it, of the second-tier skaters in the US, Zhang is the most recognizable face and from a business standpoint, that's who you want at SA.

    There's still an open spot, anyway. I think it could go to Gilles, because again, even though she has underperformed lately, she's more recognizable than the rest due to her GP experience. (Disclaimer: I hope someone else gets a chance.)
    Last edited by RD; 07-01-2011 at 04:14 PM.

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nomad View Post
    Maybe USFS is counting on a local fan base to help boost ticket sales.
    This.
    "The team doesn't get automatic capacity because management is mad" -- Greg Smith, agile guy

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    There's still an open spot, anyway. I think it could go to Gilles, because again, even though she has underperformed lately, she's more recognizable than the rest due to her GP experience. (Disclaimer: I hope someone else gets a chance.)
    I'm hoping Alexe Gilles' change to Sato/Dungjen will reinvigorate her and her skating even if it takes a while to adjust to her new situation. I believe she will start her competition season at Skate Detroit later this month.

    ETA: I was rather surprised to see a Ladies TBA at Skate America, though. Zhang would have made more sense to me as the 3rd host pick, with the 2nd spot going to maybe Zawadzki, Gao or Wagner (now a Cali girl herself).
    Last edited by Sylvia; 07-01-2011 at 05:55 PM.

  7. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    She has competed against the best. I guess when it comes down to it, of the second-tier skaters in the US, Zhang is the most recognizable face and from a business standpoint, that's who you want at SA.
    That makes sense from a business standpoint. What's so frustrating as a fan of Melissa is that she has, over the last 2 years, kept pace with Caroline at Nationals and skated just as well internationally, and medaled here and there- but has not gotten the GP assignments that Caroline has. In 2010 she ended up as 1st alternate for 4CC, and then she got a bronze at Nebelhorn but Caroline and Alexe Gilles were given Skate America 2010 along with Rachael. Which was acceptable since Caroline was the reigning 4cc bronze medalist and finished 11th at Nationals and Alexe had finished 8th at Nationals. But in 2011 Nationals went this way:

    7 Vanessa Lam All Year FSC 162.91 6 7
    8 Yasmin Siraj SC of Boston 152.75 8 8
    9 Joelle Forte SC of New York 149.28 12 9
    10 Melissa Bulanhagui University of Delaware FSC 144.53 15 11
    11 Kristiene Gong All Year FSC 143.30 17 10
    12 Caroline Zhang All Year FSC 140.95 10 12
    13 Kelsey Traunero SC of Wilmington 128.30 18 13
    14 Alexe Gilles Broadmoor SC 123.75 11 16

    So while I have nothing against Caroline and appreciate the improvements she's been making, I don't think it was cool of the USFS to hand her an automatic assignment ahead of 5 skaters who beat her at Nationals, before any of the major summer comps- make her earn it this time! And her most recent summer comp was not a successful outing, but its early season so hopefully things improve for her later.....

    Granted some of these ladies will end up on JGP, but man, how frustrating for the ones who have aged out to continually get passed over for low-achieving USFS darlings. If Caroline skates great over the summer and the others don't, then fine. But what's done is done. I just hope the TBA spot is used wisely and based on actual results...
    Last edited by haribobo; 07-01-2011 at 04:58 PM.

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    Davis/Leftheris' international debut was at last fall's Ice Challenge in Graz, Austria, where they placed 4th (to Vise/Baldwin's 2nd).
    Oh, yes. Thanks for reminding me. I even watched the competition; so I have no excuse for forgetting.

  9. #29
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    I agree. It's time to stop wasting a spot for someone like Caroline Zhang who is sliding further down the standings every year now. Same with Alexe Gillies.

  10. #30
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    Forgot about Vanessa Lam! Is she staying on the JGP circuit this year? Otherwise, she'd be an excellent choice for that TBD spot

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    Forgot about Vanessa Lam! Is she staying on the JGP circuit this year? Otherwise, she'd be an excellent choice for that TBD spot
    Yes, I believe she is. She has excellent chances there, too.

  12. #32
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    Is it for sure Hicks is skating in the JGP. If not maybe she could get the spot.

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jammers View Post
    I agree. It's time to stop wasting a spot for someone like Caroline Zhang who is sliding further down the standings every year now. Same with Alexe Gillies.
    I just wish it'd outright gone to someone on the way UP, not the way down.

    And even though I love her, I'm going to be really frustrated if Gilles gets the spot and bombs again.

  14. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by haribobo View Post
    So while I have nothing against Caroline and appreciate the improvements she's been making, I don't think it was cool of the USFS to hand her an automatic assignment ahead of 5 skaters who beat her at Nationals, before any of the major summer comps- make her earn it this time!
    This!

  15. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by haribobo View Post
    So while I have nothing against Caroline and appreciate the improvements she's been making, I don't think it was cool of the USFS to hand her an automatic assignment ahead of 5 skaters who beat her at Nationals, before any of the major summer comps- make her earn it this time! And her most recent summer comp was not a successful outing, but its early season so hopefully things improve for her later.....
    She was injured, according to something I read. But she came in third, with a crazy-low score in her FS! I definitely don't think she deserved a spot right off the bat.

  16. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sylvia View Post
    I'm hoping Alexe Gilles' change to Sato/Dungjen will reinvigorate her and her skating even if it takes a while to adjust to her new situation.
    I get the feeling that after what they've done with Czisny, they're getting skaters flocking to them in hopes of a magic turnaround. But change does not happen by changing only your surroundings. It must come from within.

    I just don't think the girl has the head for competition. At least Czisny, plagued with a history of inconsistency, had her shining moments from time to time prior to "Czisny 2.0".

    Time to give someone else a shot (at the GP).

    What's so frustrating as a fan of Melissa is that she has, over the last 2 years, kept pace with Caroline at Nationals and skated just as well internationally, and medaled here and there- but has not gotten the GP assignments that Caroline has. In 2010 she ended up as 1st alternate for 4CC, and then she got a bronze at Nebelhorn but Caroline and Alexe Gilles were given Skate America 2010 along with Rachael. Which was acceptable since Caroline was the reigning 4cc bronze medalist and finished 11th at Nationals and Alexe had finished 8th at Nationals.
    MelB and Gilles will continue to be 2nd-tier US skaters at best. At least the latter has only her head holding her back from further progress. Perhaps a Gilles with her head together would crack top 6, but wouldn't challenge for the World team without major meltdowns from the top skaters.

    As for Zhang, this might be one last hurrah before she is out for good...or maybe down the road things will pay off. But my money is on her fizzling out.

    The future of US ladies' skating is going to be Nagasu, Gao, Zawadzki, others I've never heard of. The days of Flatt, Wagner, Czisny are numbered.

  17. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by RD View Post
    I just don't think the girl has the head for competition. At least Czisny, plagued with a history of inconsistency, had her shining moments from time to time prior to "Czisny 2.0".
    Well, Gilles did win the U.S. Junior National title with great skates in 2008 and had some strong performances on the JGP. She has been underwhelming recently but it will be interesting to see if she can improve significantly with the coaching change. I would like to see Bulanhagui get a chance at a GP though.

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by RFOS View Post
    Well, Gilles did win the U.S. Junior National title with great skates in 2008 and had some strong performances on the JGP.
    Well, that was junior ranks. Once you step up to the big leagues, things change, pressure increases...I've yet to see Gilles have a breakout performance as a senior.

    I guess it depends on how the summer comps go (? someone mentioned that she was doing some summer comps in preparation for next season) whether or not she will be given that SA spot...unless USFS uses the same reasoning as CZhang and goes with familiar face over unchartered territory.

  19. #39
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    Back to Zhang for a second: for no particularly good reason, I think I'll be somewhat peeved if she gets a free pass on regionals and sectionals again (why didn't she have to compete last year)?

  20. #40

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    Quote Originally Posted by victoriaheidi View Post
    Back to Zhang for a second: for no particularly good reason, I think I'll be somewhat peeved if she gets a free pass on regionals and sectionals again (why didn't she have to compete last year)?
    Zhang's 2010 NHK Trophy assignment gave her a bye through Regionals last year and her 2nd GP at Skate America was the same week as Sectionals.

    This year, Skate America is the first GP again and it should get her out of Regionals the week before. However, if SA is her only international assignment this fall, she will most likely have to skate at Sectionals for the first time since November 2005 (when she placed 3rd in Junior at 2006 Pacific Coasts).

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