View Poll Results: Who was the greatest ladies singles figure skater never to become Olympic champion?

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  • Cecilia Colledge

    3 0.99%
  • Laurence Owen

    1 0.33%
  • Janet Lynn

    21 6.95%
  • Denise Biellmann

    2 0.66%
  • Midori Ito

    51 16.89%
  • Nancy Kerrigan

    2 0.66%
  • Michelle Kwan

    179 59.27%
  • Irina Slutskaya

    19 6.29%
  • Sasha Cohen

    12 3.97%
  • Mao Asada

    10 3.31%
  • Rosalynn Sumners

    1 0.33%
  • Other

    1 0.33%
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  1. #1

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    Who was the greatest ladies singles figure skater never to become Olympic champion?

    Unlike the world championships, the Olympics comes around but once in every 4 years. That means that for most figure skaters, they only get 1 or 2 chances at becoming Olympic champion - 3 if they are incredibly lucky. There are many reasons why an individual skater may miss out on winning the Olympic title, despite there best endeavours. Cecilia Colledge was unlucky to lose to Sonja Henie at the 1936 Olympics and then the outbreak of war prevented the 1940 Olympics from proceeding where she would have been the favourite for the title. Laurence Owen was killed in a plane crash in 1961 and therefore did not get the opportunity to compete at the 1964 Olympics where she would undoubtedly have stood a chance of winning. Both Janet Lynn and Denise Biellmann were held back by the antiquated school figures which should have been done away with during the 1960s. Others, such as Nancy Kerrigan and Michelle Kwan, came agonisingly close to winning the title, losing by very small margins. Mao Asada was the best skater in the world in 2006, but was not age eligible to compete in the Olympics during that year. By the time she could compete in 2010, Kim Yu Na was simply too good for her. Undoubtedly, therefore, sheer bad luck plays a very big part in why some skaters never become Olympic champion.

    So who was the greatest ladies singles figure skater never to become Olympic champion?
    Last edited by Maofan7; 09-15-2011 at 04:51 AM.

  2. #2
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    Definitely Michelle Kwan.. so many world titles and no OGM. Mao Asada could still maybe become Olympic champion, IMO.

  3. #3
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    Well, since my view is that Michelle Kwan is the greatest female figure skater of all time, period, she obviously gets my vote.

  4. #4
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    For me, its between Janet Lynn and Michelle Kwan. I voted for Kwan simply because of her amazing career, its longevity, and her record-setting accomplishments. Both Lynn and Kwan are inspiring skaters with unique presence on the ice, and they greatly impacted, not only their generation of skaters, but have continued to inspire so many people in the skating world and beyond. Another difference re Kwan is the fact that her career coincided with the explosion of ice skating news and video access/ coverage on the Internet.

  5. #5
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    My vote goes to the greatest female athlete in the history of this sport, Midori Ito
    Michelle's a very close second

  6. #6
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    Definitely 'Michelle Kwan'

  7. #7

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    Why is this even a poll??! (Something tells me you just want to create a poll so Michelle can be No.1 again )

    While Midori Ito is the greatest ladies jumper of ALL time, Michelle is simply the greatest all rounder ladies figure skater of 6.0 era.

    People have always placed too much emphasis on the gold, they neglect the value of how and what it takes to get there. I've always believed Michelle had gained far more during her trials and tribulations in the pursuit of her Olympics dream than winning another gold through chance, luck, good timing and then quick retirement.

    There's tremendous value in continuing to seek something that requires great deal of hard
    work and dedication even if you were unfortunately not able to get it in the end.

    In winning her silver and bronze, she has demonstrated the grace and the heart of a champion that makes her simply unforgettable, and actually... despite of everything, doesn't that make you love her even more?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    In winning her silver and bronze, she has demonstrated the grace and the heart of a champion that makes her simply unforgettable, and actually... despite of everything, doesn't that make you love her even more?
    YES!

  9. #9
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    The correct answer is Kwan.

    So I voted for Ito.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by os168 View Post
    Why is this even a poll??! (Something tells me you just want to create a poll so Michelle can be No.1 again )

    While Midori Ito is the greatest ladies jumper of ALL time, Michelle is simply the greatest all rounder ladies figure skater of 6.0 era.

    People have always placed too much emphasis on the gold, they neglect the value of how and what it takes to get there. I've always believed Michelle had gained far more during her trials and tribulations in the pursuit of her Olympics dream than winning another gold through chance, luck, good timing and then quick retirement.

    There's tremendous value in continuing to seek something that requires great deal of hard
    work and dedication even if you were unfortunately not able to get it in the end.

    In winning her silver and bronze, she has demonstrated the grace and the heart of a champion that makes her simply unforgettable, and actually... despite of everything, doesn't that make you love her even more?
    ^^ALL of this.

  11. #11
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    Michelle Kwan, definitely. For her longevity, world titles and.. memories.
    Runners-up, IMO: Lynn, Ito and Slutskaya
    Last edited by lowtherlore; 09-15-2011 at 03:11 PM.

  12. #12
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    Michelle!

    My runner-up (whom I also love to pieces) - Midori!

  13. #13
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    From the skaters in my era anyway, Kwan comes to mind.

    She became a household name without winning the Olympics (although it can be argued that most of that is due to her coming up during skating's unprecedented US popularity boom in the Post-Whack 90s). In fact, many people seem to mistakenly believe that she won.

  14. #14
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    Michelle Kwan, of course.
    With so many World titles, and such longevity, it's still unbelievable to me that she never won the olympic title.
    Midori Ito and Janet Lynn would be followers.

    Carolina Kostner without a World title or an Olympic medal is also sad, because she is one of the best ever.

  15. #15
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    I voted for Cecilia Colledge because no one else has yet. The other plausible choices are Lynn, Ito, Kwan and Slutskaya.

    (And Elaine Zayak should be a choice!!!!)

  16. #16

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    IMO it's a toss up between Michelle and Midori. Both were heavy favorites going into the Olympics. Michelle dominated her sport in terms of winning titles more than Midori did, but Midori was light years ahead of her competition in skills. Both should have become OGM winners but it did not happen. Midori made a big mistake; Michelle made none (in 1998). So logic says it has to be Michelle. My heart went with Midori, even though I am a big Michelle Kwan fan. That's probably because Michelle at least had one more chance to win the OGM; Midori did not.

  17. #17

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    All hands down, Michelle the Kween!

    Maofan7 you really love starting polls of all kinds, huh?

  18. #18
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    I would put them into groups:

    First group- Ito, Lynn, Kwan, Slutskaya

    Second group- Asada, Biellmann, Kerrigan, Sumners, Fratianne, Thomas, Colledge, Harding

    Third group- Chen, Owen, Cohen, Zayak

    My thoughts on some:

    Kerrigan- I rate her higher on this list only since she so nearly and maybe should have won in 94. As an overall skater I rate her below many others.

    Chen- I rate her highly as a skater but dont rate her that high on a list like this since she was never really close to winning an Oly Gold and never really had a chance at one. Her peak was 95-96 in between Olympics, and her strength beyond that is her consistency and longevity. Overall I consider Chen a greater skater than Kerrigan, but Kerrigan had much more chance of winning an Oly Gold in 94 than Chen ever did.

    Cohen- She never even won a Worlds in the non figures era, so I dont see how it is such a shame she couldnt win the Olympics. Anyway in her era there were alot of greater skaters than her- Kwan, Slutskaya, Arakawa, possibly even Hughes or Butyrskaya, young Asada. It is a shame she couldnt atleast win a Worlds.

    Sumners- I am not a fan but she was the reigning World Champion and 3 time U.S Champion and came so close to winning despite a subpar competition. She probably should have won in 84 if she were mentally stronger in the competition.

    Zayak- I dont put her in the second group only since she peaked in 81-82 and thus really had no chance of winning an Oly Gold at any point. Well she was outstanding in the free skating at the 84 Games but was out of favor by then (and her figures presumably were really bad by then).

    Harding- if she actually shown up in her 91 shape for the 92 Games and skated to her potential she would have ran away with the gold with Ito and Yamaguchi subpar in the actual competition. The biggest blown opportunity of her whole career, and likely set the chain of events in her life.
    Last edited by judgejudy27; 09-15-2011 at 05:00 PM.

  19. #19

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    Mao should not be on this poll right now. She still has a shot at the OGM in 2014.

  20. #20
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    Kwan, Ito, Lynn, Colledge but every time I think about it, I change the order.

    Kwan is the obvious choice but the way she handled both defeats somehow added to her iconic status within the sport. She transcended the OGM and her body of work became somehow bigger than the title rather than being a skater who is defined by it.

    Reflecting back, Ito's loss hurt me more than Kwan's as a huge fan of both skaters. She just seemed under the most unbearable pressure. A skater with one world title and an OSM could very easily become a footnote in skatign history so I'm glad that youtube has resurrected her legacy in skating and more and more fans are becoming aware of her technical genius.

    Colledge was a victim of circumstance. I have little doubt that she would have become the Olympic champion were it not for WW2 and that with the political weight of the NSA behind her, the loss to Taylor in 1938 would be seen as an abberation.

    Lynn - Wrong era. There was just no way she was ever meant to win the OGM under that system. But ironically, her fall in the LP and subsequent smile made her and cemented her legendary status within the sport.

    So to sum up.....I don't know

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