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Thread: The third spot

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    The third spot

    Who came in third at 2002 US Nationals for the ladies? Who won the ladies' 2002 Olympic gold medal?

    Who came in third at 2006 Japanese Nationals for the ladies? Who won the ladies' 2006 Olympic gold medal?

    Who came in third at 2009 US Nationals for the men? Who won the men's 2009 World gold medal?



    The importance of the third spot.......

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    Quote Originally Posted by carriecmu0503 View Post
    The importance of the third spot.......
    is most significant when a federation will have three podium contenders (as was the case in your examples).

    Italy had three entries in this year's Ladies' competition at the European Championships, but only two women who were realistic podium contenders. It was nice that Roberta Rodeghiero got to compete, but it wouldn't have been the end of the world, even for Italian skating fans, if she hadn't been able to do so.

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    Roberta, as do other third spot candidates, probably works hard and makes sacrifices to skate, so it probably had some importance to her, no matter how the fans felt. None of this , of course, rises to "end of world" status.

    In 1981-82, Elaine Zyak was US bronze medalist. If there had not been a third spot, she could not have gone to worlds where she won gold. Same skater 1983-84, us bronze medalist would have not gone on to worlds to win a bronze medal.
    Last edited by Iceman; 01-28-2013 at 08:13 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vagabond View Post
    is most significant when a federation will have three podium contenders (as was the case in your examples).

    Italy had three entries in this year's Ladies' competition at the European Championships, but only two women who were realistic podium contenders. It was nice that Roberta Rodeghiero got to compete, but it wouldn't have been the end of the world, even for Italian skating fans, if she hadn't been able to do so.

    But what about when one of the medal contenders for worlds just has a bad day at nationals? That was the case in 2009- no way was Brandon Mroz a medal contender for worlds. Had we only had two spots that year, he still would have been sent to worlds as the silver medalist, while Lysacek would not have. Then, Lysacek would not be the world champion he is today. Jeremy Abbott had a bad day at Nationals- on a good day, he is absolutely a world medal contender, while I do not think Max Aaron is. All credit due to him for having a fantastic day at nationals and winning, but I highly doubt that even if he repeats that performance at worlds, that the international judges will give him the same PCS or GOE he got at Nationals. Even with that incredible skate with two quads, he only beat Abbott by about 5 points- and Abbott fell on an under rotated quad and doubled two triple jumps. It's a shame we'll never know what Abbott may have been capable of doing at Worlds this year. I think, with the pressure off him as national champ, he might have actually done better at Worlds, had he doubled one less jump and been sent to worlds as the silver medalist.

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    Despite all the errors, I thought Abbott looked drastically better at Nationals than he did on the GP. Who knows what another month and a half could have done. Even if we don't have guaranteed medalists or even guaranteed top 5 finishers for Worlds in any discipline but dance, we have so much depth in this country that it's pretty awful to not have a 3rd spot for men and ladies. You hate to see a talent like Abbott sitting at home.
    Last edited by stjeaskategym; 01-28-2013 at 08:11 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stjeaskategym View Post
    Despite all the errors, I thought Abbott looked drastically better at Nationals than he did on the GP. Who knows what another month and a half could have done. Even if we don't have guaranteed medalists or even guaranteed top 5 finishers for Worlds in any discipline but dance, we have so much depth in this country that it's pretty awful to not have a 3rd spot for men and ladies. You hate to see a talent like Abbott sitting at home.
    True, but you cannot deny the skaters that actually delivered at the nationals. If the USFSA wants to use the nationals to pick the world team, they have to follow the rules. Actually according to rules, they had the option of selecting Abbott over Miner (Aaron had automatic berth on worlds), but they chose not to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by carriecmu0503 View Post
    But what about when one of the medal contenders for worlds just has a bad day at nationals?
    It's a sport. There are football teams that probably could have won the Super Bowl, but they had a bad game during the play-off.

    Perhaps USFS should not use national results to choose the team, but that is an objective measure- evaluating a season (or two or three?) as a whole is very subjective, unless someone is just a real star. In the past, athletes have always said they prefer using nationals results. You have to be 'on' on the day it matters.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Skittl1321 View Post
    In the past, athletes have always said they prefer using nationals results. You have to be 'on' on the day it matters.
    And if you aren't on, you'll still magically get a 120 in the free skate and make it to Worlds anyway (Wagner). And your disastrous short program will score just enough to make sure you still have a chance at Worlds (Gold). I definitely feel that Wagner and Gold belong at Worlds, but our selection procedures could be better for sure.

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    I just don't believe the judges are that good at math that they can play with their GOEs and PCS to make these results magically happen.

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    Jeremy is a beautiful skater, but has had multiple chances to prove himself at Worlds and hasn't done it. His performance yesterday was not just one "bad day," it was one of many bad days he's had throughout his career. I think, with Javi, Dai, Chan, Amodio, Joubert, Hanyu and others in the mix at worlds, his chances of a podium finish were very slim. I doubt that the judges even consider him a potential Worlds medalist at this point.

    Max Aaron is the future of US mens skating, just as Michelle Kwan was the future in 1994. She went to Worlds that year (wouldn't have if Nancy and Tonya decided to go) and had no chance of landing in the top five. But she established herself as someone to watch. I think that's what will happen with Max this year.
    "I hit him with my shoes... if he had given me the medal like I told him to, I wouldn't have had to hit him!" -- 8-year-old Rhoda Penmark in "The Bad Seed"

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    I fail to see the point of having three spots if we don't have three strong skaters. Which we don't.
    My job requires me to be a juggler, but that does not mean that I enjoy working with clowns.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Nomad View Post
    I fail to see the point of having three spots if we don't have three strong skaters. Which we don't.
    I guess you're using a very narrow definition of "strong." IMO, there were many strong performances at Nationals and the depth of talent has kept getting better in recent years (except in pairs).

    To compare to 2010, which was a much weaker year in ladies, the top 11 in the free skate all outscored Sasha Cohen's 4th place free skate that year by at least 5 points (and I think the scoring potential was higher then since there was still a leveled spiral sequence, and + GOEs on jumps at least were worth more). There have been a few other changes to the SOV since then but I think the only really significant changes were the changes to the base values and GOE structure for quads, so those wouldn't be relevant and any other changes I don't think would make nearly a 5 point difference.
    Last edited by RFOS; 01-28-2013 at 09:19 PM.

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    I was one of those angry about Abbott being left off the team in 2011 (due to horrific overscore of Bradley's actual performance). However, I simply can't muster the same passion now. Abbott has just shown time and time again he's not a competitor and when you have two skaters who land high-quality jumps, COP-friendly elements, and skate with much better speed and conviction, well the USFS shouldn't have to wait and see how you look in a month and half.

    It'd be one thing if Abbott was doing consistently well in the GP events or didn't have a history of bombing to the point where it's predictable, but Abbott has had so many opportunities to show what he could perform under international pressure and blew it each time.

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    the US ladies third spot is the recurring obsession of every season even if you are a skating fan from Java or Azerbajan, or a visiting alien from Saturn, you'll have to face it sooner or later. you can't escape. actually, a skating season without the eternal discussions around this extremely important matter wouldnt be a real season. as long as it's been discussed, everything is alright, it means that the world isnt going to end soon. year after year, it becomes an essential part of your existence, to the point that you'd be never able to enjoy life again if such discussions disappeared.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VIETgrlTerifa View Post
    I was one of those angry about Abbott being left off the team in 2011 (due to horrific overscore of Bradley's actual performance). However, I simply can't muster the same passion now. Abbott has just shown time and time again he's not a competitor and when you have two skaters who land high-quality jumps, COP-friendly elements, and skate with much better speed and conviction, well the USFS shouldn't have to wait and see how you look in a month and half.

    It'd be one thing if Abbott was doing consistently well in the GP events or didn't have a history of bombing to the point where it's predictable, but Abbott has had so many opportunities to show what he could perform under international pressure and blew it each time.
    Still, Abbott managed to place 3rd in the country and is still a very high quality skater. Our lack of a 3rd spot becomes even more disappointing to me when someone of Abbott's caliber places 3rd. I don't think he should be sent to Worlds over the top 2, but I still wish he could be there instead of sitting at home.

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    Quote Originally Posted by stjeaskategym View Post
    Still, Abbott managed to place 3rd in the country and is still a very high quality skater. Our lack of a 3rd spot becomes even more disappointing to me when someone of Abbott's caliber places 3rd. I don't think he should be sent to Worlds over the top 2, but I still wish he could be there instead of sitting at home.

    This is exactly what I was getting at with this thread. I hope,hope, hope somehow Max and Ross and Ashley and Gracie can somehow pull it off and bring that third spot back for the Olympic year!

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    Quote Originally Posted by stjeaskategym View Post
    Still, Abbott managed to place 3rd in the country and is still a very high quality skater. Our lack of a 3rd spot becomes even more disappointing to me when someone of Abbott's caliber places 3rd. I don't think he should be sent to Worlds over the top 2, but I still wish he could be there instead of sitting at home.
    If only Abbott could have gone to worlds as the #3 skater, his chances of making the podium would be better than those of Aaron or Miner. I am not convinced that Aaron is the future of US mens skating. One competition does not make a future. Remember Ricky Dornbush couple years ago? He never found that magic again. I hope that does not happen to Aaron. I hope that we have many talented, medal-worthy men, but as Yoda says- "Hard to predict the future is".

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    I think the question is whether or not there really was a "sure bet" combination of 2 US skaters that would have been the best bet for 13 of less total placements at Worlds. You can mix and match as much as you want, I just don't see 2 men that could have combined for less than 13.

    Jeremy Abbott got an 89 component scores in the LP - I actually think the judges tried to help him out as much as they could, it just didn't add up in the end.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Seerek View Post
    I think the question is whether or not there really was a "sure bet" combination of 2 US skaters that would have been the best bet for 13 of less total placements at Worlds. You can mix and match as much as you want, I just don't see 2 men that could have combined for less than 13.

    Jeremy Abbott got an 89 component scores in the LP - I actually think the judges tried to help him out as much as they could, it just didn't add up in the end.
    I'm not convinced the ladies will be able to combine for 13 or less, either. Good grief, remember 2006? The combined score of all THREE ladies was only 11. Oh, the days.....

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    I understand the gist of your post but Shizuka was the second qualifier in 2006 since Mao was not age eligible for the Olympics. It was Miki who truly took the third spot.
    And it's easy NOW to look back at 2002 nationals with a different perspective. However, at the time, Sarah wasn't NOT going to Salt Lake City. USFS spent the last 3 years promoting the heck out of her. She was the reigning world bronze medalist, had beaten Irina and Michelle at SC and was a sure shot contender at any competition she entered. Her spot on the Olympic team was secure. It was a brilliant political move by USFS to promote Sasha as the silver medalist going into SLC but had there only been two spots, Sarah would have been protected more at nationals and Sasha would have probably watched the Olympics at home.

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