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  1. #361
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    IDK anything except the result that I see. I think the problem in the U.S. has been the lack of a gifted U.S. skater w/ mental fortitude.

    Jeremy is definitely a big talent. Like others have alluded to, he would medal at Worlds if he would just pull it together. But, something finally struck me while watching him in the K & C at TEB: He was there and seemed happy with 227 pts. I was like 'Dude, you were just beaten by the no. 6 man from Japan! That's NOT good. I don't care if it's an improvement over SA, because generally you should be doing much better. Save for a few exceptions, you've been underperforming your whole Senior career.' Maybe he's simply not as ambitious or hungry as an Ashley Wagner. In that case, he'll never reach the podium at Worlds or Olympics. Though he has been fortunate in that he hasn't been left behind because no other US man has stepped up. But, being left behind would probably not give him a jolt anyway. He got spanked at '11 Nationals, was off the team, but it didn't really motivate him to change anything afterwards.

    I think what is riveting about US men right now is that we have a ton of talent that never consistently delivers and hasn't for the past few years. Combine that with the Lysacek and Weir side shows and it's a big mess.
    I agree with this. I get the skaters want to have a good attitude about things, but I feel the same way, about a lot of skaters. Ross always seems thrilled when he does well, like wining bronze at NHK and 4CC, but his reaction always seems surprised, like "Wow, I can't believe I did that!" instead of "Yeah, I just did that!". It seems to be a common attitude among the US men, maybe it's just the face they put on to the media, but I was a bit shocked when Josh Farris talked about being so happy when he was 2nd at Jr. Worlds by less than half a point, yeah the score and placement is great, but aren't you a little upset you didn't do a 2lo and won? Or here when he had an allergic reaction and lost to Kovtun, it was "I had an allergic reaction, given that and then the benadryl, I'm happy with how I did" instead of "I wish I had read the ingredients more carefully so this didn't happen because then I might have skated better and won, which I know I was capable of doing". And Jeremy's outlook is always, "Best so far." Yeah okay buddy, sure it's your best so far, but when you know you can still do way better, why are you happy with that, unless your "best so far" resulted in gold, which IIRC these words were said at last year's GPF, where he was 5th. I get it's not all about points and winning, but I don't think it's a bad thing to reveal you want to win and when mistakes or unfortunate occurences happen that prevent you from winning or doing your best, that you're disappointed because you know you could do better. A lot of it might just be the facade to the public these guys put on, but idk, I think if someone is going to break through, the drive is the most important thing, that and consistency. There are plenty of guys in the US with lots of talent, what's lacking is more the "take no prisoners" attitude, or the kind of minset that's like "I can do a quad, so I'm going to work really hard to put 2 in my freeskate, because I know I'll need it to be competitive, and I'm confident I can do it if I keep working at it." Idk. Evan had this mindset though I felt (not regarding quads, but when he was competing, they weren't necessary), and it took him far, he was talented for sure, but mostly he was hard working and driven and didn't mind letting people know he wanted to win and was upset when he didn't skate his best. That is what we need, IMO.

  2. #362
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    True, that's why I had such high hopes for Evan's return last year, because imho only he could secure a medal for the USA in the team event. But then one thing kept happening after another which prevented him from competing to the point that I no longer believed in it, sad to say.

    Here's hoping he *miraculously* comes back next year, completely healthy, and ready to secure a medal for Team USA at the Olympics.

    Because he has something so rare in skating, the mind of a competitor, a winner, a champion, a fighter! Yeah, others may be more talented than him, yadda yadda yadda, but what they lack is his focus/mindset. This is what truly separates the champions from everybody else. The cream always rises to the top. Others choke, make excuses, fall all over the place, give up, have that "deer in the headlights" look, cram at the last minute for a test, are intimidated, afraid to say what they really mean, uneasy being on top, cannot for the life of them skate two clean programs in a row, don't believe in themselves, and on & on. Whereas one only need to look at a Plushenko or a Kwan to see what separates them from all the rest, what makes them a champion. Same goes for Evan Lysacek, or somebody like Caydee Denney, Marissa Castelli, Ashley Wagner...

  3. #363
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    Quote Originally Posted by olympic View Post
    IDK anything except the result that I see. I think the problem in the U.S. has been the lack of a gifted U.S. skater w/ mental fortitude.

    Jeremy is definitely a big talent. Like others have alluded to, he would medal at Worlds if he would just pull it together. But, something finally struck me while watching him in the K & C at TEB: He was there and seemed happy with 227 pts. I was like 'Dude, you were just beaten by the no. 6 man from Japan! That's NOT good. I don't care if it's an improvement over SA, because generally you should be doing much better. Save for a few exceptions, you've been underperforming your whole Senior career.' Maybe he's simply not as ambitious or hungry as an Ashley Wagner. In that case, he'll never reach the podium at Worlds or Olympics. Though he has been fortunate in that he hasn't been left behind because no other US man has stepped up. But, being left behind would probably not give him a jolt anyway. He got spanked at '11 Nationals, was off the team, but it didn't really motivate him to change anything afterwards.

    I think what is riveting about US men right now is that we have a ton of talent that never consistently delivers and hasn't for the past few years. Combine that with the Lysacek and Weir side shows and it's a big mess.
    I like Jeremy, but I have all but given up hope he will ever reach his full potential. I honestly wish he would prove me wrong, but you hit the nail on the head. He seems okay with his placements. As a former GPF champ, you would think he would be upset and disappointed and perhaps even sligtly embarrassed to not win his GP events, especially when he could have. Quad aside, he really is still in the position to win his GP's, Nationals, medals at 4CC, and even Worlds if he stops making silly mistakes because the judges seem to still be in his favor and award him with excellent PC's even when he skates poorly. His focus seems all over the place when he is skating and he really doesn't seem to get angry or motivated by setbacks like Ashley Wagner, who just made a decision to show everybody she was a champion when most had written her off. He obviously has drive because I don't believe you can be an elite skater in this day and age without truly wanting it, but he seems to be completely unable to turn his drive and emotions into solid performances which is shocking this long into his career. Realistically, all he has to do is his quad and both his 3A's and skate relatively clean thereafter, which we all have all seen him do beautifully, at Worlds and be in contention. Domestically, all he has to do is put together a decent performance (2 3A's and all his triples) to win. It's hard to watch him consistently perform below his potential year after year.

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    For the last two years, every time Jeremy gets training to get two quads (one in short/one in long) he gets injured. That's why I think he won't improve any more. Physically, he just can't train hard enough to get there. I had hope until the injuries started happening. Sure, focus was an issue, but he was having some great skates (usually at Nationals). At 2012 Nationals, no one was close. He usually can get one quad in by Nationals. I always thought if you threw Jeremy at Worlds enough times, he'd hit at least once and medal. Now- I don't think so. But I certainly don't see any lack of desire to win. He'd have retired after his first SR season if he lacked the will to win.

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    Hmmm, I guess there's something to what many of you are expressing, although I disagree with some of your conclusions or suppositions/ perceptions.

    Maybe bottom line it all adds up to frustration over the fact that Jeremy is such a great skater who has stellar qualities that rise above most of the other contenders in the men's field, but he has yet to fully prevail. I really missed seeing at least one or two U.S. guys at the GPF. Clearly Machida got lucky during the GP season, and Jeremy unfortunately was battling physical problems and not just nerves -- he did almost make it to GPF. But perhaps it is just as well that Jeremy will be able to use this time to heal and come out strong at Nats and Worlds (hopefully).

    Sure there may be something to the remarks that it's not good Jeremy seems okay with taking silver when he clearly is a better skater than Mura (as well as Machida and he's at least on a par with Kozuka technically, but definitely better artistically than mostly everyone). I think it's possible to read too much into kiss 'n cry reactions, but yes maybe Jeremy could benefit from an infusion of confidence and belief in the fact that he can bring it, quads and all. Re Ross, I disagree that there's a problem with Ross being surprised at his marks in the kiss 'n cry. I think the surprise for him at NHK was that he was rewarded for what he already knew was a kickin' fp performance at NHK. Also, look at his dissatisfaction with not landing the quad in the sp (even though he was stellar on everything else). It seems to me that because Ross got mad and wasn't willing to settle, he came back in his fp determined to land the quad sal, and he did! He fist-pumped at the end of his program too, so again he knows he did great. And it was great to see him being rewarded. Remember that he was not rewarded at Worlds 2011 for clean performances, so there's a reason he might be unsure what the judges will do. Both Ross and Richard were low-balled at 2011 Worlds likely for being new on senior scene. Okay, so now is the season to build rep. But in order to be able to build on his achievements at NHK, Ross has got to hit at Nationals and be selected for the World team.

    What is easy to forget perhaps is that the U.S. has a talented, deep field of skaters and that's why it's hard to make it out of Nationals, which hurts their individual international exposure, competitive development and experience. The fact Jeremy did not make it to 2011 Worlds I think hurt his confidence, and it hurt the U.S. men's team (but Jeremy did come back really strong and he's made a statement with his gorgeous artistry and his wonderful all-around skating). He just did not get the bugaboo completely off his back at 2012 Worlds.

    Moreover, I think it's fair to say that the U.S. fed hampered their skaters too by initial resistance to the new scoring system (but that was a tough call). And also in the U.S. there was apparently a slowness in sensing how important the quad would become. And it seems not enough U.S. athletes have taken advantage of Christy Krall's innovations with DART -- she sure helped Patrick Chan. Some of the most successful international skaters train in the United States. Perhaps I'm being contradictory because I don't think the quad is everything, but obviously it's a necessity these days. I'm just hoping there won't be as many injuries in the Olympic season as we've seen this year.

    In any case, while a number of international men have reliable quads, none of them are exactly consistent every time out. I thought GPF men's event was overall disappointing to watch. Sure Dai was great in sp (and it looks like he's been polishing and refining his programs, but I still don't think either of his programs are as good as last year). Sure, Dai is landing the quad a bit more successfully, but the sport's overemphasis on the quad and the overly high and often inconsistent scoring I think is deleterious. After Fernandez's huge marks and landing 3 quads (one barely -- it's been done before and so what!), the rest of the guys seemed to tense up thinking they had to land their 2 quads or bust!

    Speaking of being "surprised in the kiss 'n cry," Dai was surprised he won. Chan OTOH was disappointed he didn't at least get in front of Hanyu I suppose -- now he has two Japanese guys to battle with and the judges clearly are not giving him the breaks they used to bestow. But I give Chan kudos for working on the artistic aspects of his skating. As irresistibly cute as Hanyu is, all that frenzied arm shaking with fierce facial expressions is not artistry IMHO, despite the overly high PCS marks he received.

    Truthfully, where's the Master when he's needed? Come on, Jeremy, meld competitive fire with your masterful artistic brilliance. And keep on going Ross, Richard, Armin, Keegan, Joshua, Jason ... you guys CAN DO IT!

  6. #366
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    ...Moreover, I think it's fair to say that the U.S. fed hampered their skaters too by initial resistance to the new scoring system (but that was a tough call). And also in the U.S. there was apparently a slowness in sensing how important the quad would become. And it seems not enough U.S. athletes have taken advantage of Christy Krall's innovations with DART -- she sure helped Patrick Chan. Some of the most successful international skaters train in the United States. Perhaps I'm being contradictory because I don't think the quad is everything, but obviously it's a necessity these days. I'm just hoping there won't be as many injuries in the Olympic season as we've seen this year.
    I couldn't find the words to put this idea in writing, so thanks for doing it!

    I also think perhaps our current skaters in their formative days saw Weir early on, during the implementation of the scoring system around '04 - '06, racking up nice big numbers under IJS w/o a Quad (when it had been important in the lead up to SLC '02), as well as Lysacek win in '09 and Vancouver '10, the biggest prize of all, and they just didn't think the risk was worth it. Add that to the USFSA slowness in embracing the system in general, and the US gets caught with its pants down around its ankles.

  7. #367
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    This new Jason Brown article includes his goals for 2013 Nationals & beyond, and reveals a planned relocation to Colorado Springs with his coach in March 2013: http://www.icetalentinc.com/2012/12/...changes-ahead/

    Ross Miner recalls his memories of Christmas growing up in Vermont: http://web.icenetwork.com/news/artic...&vkey=ice_news

    Scroll down for more about Miner, plus some fun tidbits on the Skating Club of Boston guys and Alex Aiken's on ice proposal to Michelle Pennington in the latest "Inside Edge" blog: http://web.icenetwork.com/news/artic...&vkey=ice_news
    ETA link to video of the production number and Aiken's proposal (around the 3:30 mark): http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t_qctLyIc4Q
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

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    Jason and Kori are moving to Colorado Springs- that's big news. Hope they both get advantage of everything it has to offer, while keeping what's so special about them. Good luck!
    improving my ballad- like lines

  9. #369
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftershocks View Post
    .....And it seems not enough U.S. athletes have taken advantage of Christy Krall's innovations with DART -- she sure helped Patrick Chan. ....
    I've seen this comment a few times by various posters so it's worth pointing out that Dartfish is alive and well in rinks around the country. Christy Krall did not invent it and she's not the only one using it. The media just seems to have focused on Dartfish in the Krall / Chan situation, but it's not a strategic advantage exclusive to her or the Springs (nor is it exclusive to skating - the application is used for a wide variety of sports).
    "I miss footwork that has any kind of a discernible pattern. The goal of a step sequence should not be for a skater to show the same ice coverage as a Zamboni and take about as much time as an ice resurface. " ~ Zemgirl, reflecting on a pre-IJS straight line sequence

  10. #370
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    ^^ Thanks for that information and clarification, BittyBug!


    After reading the article about Jason moving to Colorado Springs, I wonder: Is there something advantageous about training in a high altitude?

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    Yes - it's more challenging to train at altitude because the oxygen level in the air is lower due to the altitude, so training at high altitude builds endurance. There are many other attractions about Colorado Springs, though - the convenience of an all-in-one training center with top notch equipment for off ice activities, lots of high-level competitors to provide motivation, relatively low cost of living. I'm sure the athletes would cite other factors as well.
    "I miss footwork that has any kind of a discernible pattern. The goal of a step sequence should not be for a skater to show the same ice coverage as a Zamboni and take about as much time as an ice resurface. " ~ Zemgirl, reflecting on a pre-IJS straight line sequence

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    ^^ Thanks. I recall many skaters being so winded the year 4CCs took place in Colorado.

    But statistically, do skaters who train there have more success? Maybe they have greater endurance -- Hanyu might want to try training there in that case (at least for a trial one summer).

  13. #373
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    U.S. senior men currently training in Colorado Springs (6000+ feet elevation): Armin Mahbanoozadeh, Max Aaron, Joshua Farris, Alexander Johnson, Brandon Mroz.

    Adam Rippon and Nathan Chen train in Lake Arrowhead, Calif. which has an elevation of around 5400 feet. Other SoCal skaters like Richard Dornbush, Jonathan Cassar, etc. will skate up there occasionally for altitude training.

    Quote Originally Posted by BittyBug View Post
    There are many other attractions about Colorado Springs, though - the convenience of an all-in-one training center with top notch equipment for off ice activities, lots of high-level competitors to provide motivation, relatively low cost of living. I'm sure the athletes would cite other factors as well.
    In the article, Brown's coach cited "access to the OTC" [Olympic Training Center] as another plus.
    Last edited by Sylvia; 12-20-2012 at 06:30 PM.
    "Randy [Starkman (1960-April 16, 2012)] lived by the same motto as the rest of us. The Olympics isn’t every four years, it’s every single day. He just got it." --Canadian Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden

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  15. #375

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    Wow! This big move has certainly caught me by surprise. It seems to be a positive step forward, so I hope it works!

    Excited to hear that they are putting two triple Axels in the long. If he can land all the attempts he makes he should score big.

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    Jason looks to be skating really well. The 3A is solid and he did a lovely 3A+3T in training this morning.

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    Great to hear that Jason is going to add more triples and hopefully quads to his arsenal. He's a gorgeous skater to watch. But he needs the high point jumps if he wants to podium in the senior men Worlds in the coming seasons. With quads + PCs, Jason has room for error. Looking at the current field, post Sochi (assuming a handful of retirements), the Japanese men are still the ones to beat especially Hanyu. He's brilliant and set to dominate now onwards, and he's only 18.
    Prosperity makes friends, adversity tries them. – Publilius Syrus

  18. #378

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    Quote Originally Posted by insideedgeua View Post
    Jason looks to be skating really well. The 3A is solid and he did a lovely 3A+3T in training this morning.
    *blinks*

    Wow. I guess when the "click" moment happens, it really happens. I'm so glad!

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    I'll go way out on a limb and predict Stephen Carriere will be a surprise medalist.

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    ^^ Yep, the pewter medal is definitely up for grabs.

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