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  1. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by museksk8r View Post
    I never claimed that Michelle was the most original or versatile skater ever, but in comparison to Sasha, Kwan was more original and versatile than Cohen. Michelle had a knack for skating to music pieces that no one had ever heard in skating competition before. Given her comparitively shorter career to Kwan, Cohen recycled many of her programs and music pieces . . . she skated to music from Dark Eyes for 3 seasons, Malaguena for 2 seasons, and My Sweet and Tender Beast for 2 seasons. Performing to Skating's Greatest Hits or to the same music pieces over and over and over doesn't show originality or versatility. If you believe it does, then I'll simply agree to disagree with you.
    I agree. Sasha had some lovely programs that she presented very well, but I don't think any of them could be seen as something unique or out-of-the-box. All of her selections were well-known or warhorses...very nice and well done programs but nothing that pushed boundaries: R&J, Nutcracker, Swan Lake, Rachmaninoff, Carmen, Malaguena. Her choices were effective but very safe.

    I do think Michelle's music choices show greater versatility. She (and Lori) went for music that wasn't well known which made choreographing and delivering the program more difficult b/c they had to sell the judges and the audience on two things instead of one. Well-known music is familiar to the judges' ears so they know what's coming next. It's an easier sell for a skater...selling both the music and the program is a taller order.

    Michelle stepped out of the box with Rush, A Day in the Life and Miraculous Manadrin, but IMO none more than Red Violin. Red Violin was so unique b/c there isn't a lot of music to hide behind. It takes a special kind of choreographer/skater combo to pull off a program like that and Michelle did it beautiful. That program had a completely different feel to it: soft and haunting yet still powerful. It's a masterpiece IMO.

    Michelle's portfolio of programs includes classical/lyrical (Lyra, Rach), dramatic (Desdemona, Miraculous Mandarin), exotic (Salome, Taj Mahal), powerful (Tosca, Feeling Begins), contemporary (Rush, Day in the Life), and whatever you would classify Red Violin as. I think she had the ability to pull off any kind of music thrown at her...except Bolero! I think that was the one miss in her entire career, though the original version of the program with all of Dean's choreography was pretty good.

  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by znhurston View Post
    What about Cohen's spirals? Is there any ladies' skater in history who has performed better spirals??
    Many. Sasha's pattern was not the strongest and her change of edge was rather wimpy. There's a lot more to a spiral than how high you can lift you your free leg. Take Shizuka Arakawa's spiral at the 2006 Olympics. Maybe not as aesthetically pleasing as Sasha's but she held her position for much longer, made an absolutely gigantic pattern on the ice (went out much further towards the boards than Cohen did) and her edge control was much better too.

  3. #43
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    fakest smile i've ever seen :'(

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6PddOi_Dmlc#t=3m06s

    looks like she wants to kill someone (probably shelly) behind it

  4. #44

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    The answer to this questions seems very obvious. Kwan beat Cohen in the majority of their head to head matchups. Kwan was a better skater.

  5. #45

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    The Kween of course!

  6. #46
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    Love them both, but Michelle Kwan hands down... she had the whole package.

  7. #47
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    Even tho Sasha was nerve wrecking to watch (it was never a question of if she'd fall, but when she'd fall), I liked her programs better and found her overall skating more interesting to watch.

  8. #48

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    Quote Originally Posted by gordanlevitt View Post
    True, but isnt this thread supposed to step over that, as it is who is better skater, not better competitor. Michelle Kwan was also the Patrick Chan of that era, a big judges pet, so it made it easier to skate cleanly all the time when you know the judges had you penciled in as the winner before events even began. Sasha never had that comfort as much, she had to be perfect, and if she made a small mistake the judges hammered her.
    So wrong in so many ways. When did Michelle win a World Championship with three falls? Michelle skated more back-to-back clean programs than any skater I can think of. She was often underscored by the judges, who left room for Irina Slutskaya and others. Look at her technical marks at 2000 Worlds for her flawless, 7-triple performance. Room was left not just for Irina but also for Maria Butyrskaya! If either one had skated clean they would have won. So Michelle not only had to be perfect; she had to be perfect and have her rivals make mistakes! Sasha was her own worst enemy. The judges didn't need to have an excuse to mark her down, because Sasha always failed to come through in the long program at Nationals.

  9. #49

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    I'm not sure why this thread was started but it has become a setup and a pretext for dumping on Cohen. Kwan's record speaks for itself. On every best-lady-skater poll I've ever seen, Kwan wins, at least until Kim came along. It is not really a fair comparison.

    I love Sasha's skating (my user name is based on her spins and OSM) and her consistency (21 consecutive podiums), while not nearly as good as Kwan's, is much more apparent than it was 7 years ago. Her FS mistakes were frustrating and heartbreaking, but they pale next to Chan's. Still, I obviously can't love her for her gold medals or competitive nerve. Alas, the problem of the FS fall(s) really seemed to get to her and become a self-fulfilling fear. But her skates are some of the most beautiful and memorable I've ever seen. She is the skating ballerina par excellence. To many skating fans, there is no need for that -- skating is a sport with its own technique and requirements (let alone that most skaters study ballet to improve their line and grace). But to many, Sasha was a unique example of someone who brought exquisite balletic line, drama, and artistry to the competitive arena. Her career is full of what-ifs and tears (as she once admitted in an interview), but I don't think she will be forgotten, at least as long as Youtube is still there letting the skaters and fans of the future see her Rach 2, Romeo and Juliet, Nutcracker, Dark Eyes, Malaguena, God Bless America (exhibition), etc. Those programs are never going to seem humdrum or second rate.

  10. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by AJ Skatefan View Post
    The answer to this questions seems very obvious. Kwan beat Cohen in the majority of their head to head matchups. Kwan was a better skater.
    Yes, but did Kwan ever do this?

  11. #51

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparks View Post
    Yes, but did Kwan ever do this?
    Anyone who took so little care with the ice and the safety of skaters would meet the fate implied in this bit of choreography.

  12. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by giselle23 View Post
    So wrong in so many ways. When did Michelle win a World Championship with three falls? Michelle skated more back-to-back clean programs than any skater I can think of. She was often underscored by the judges, who left room for Irina Slutskaya and others. Look at her technical marks at 2000 Worlds for her flawless, 7-triple performance. Room was left not just for Irina but also for Maria Butyrskaya! If either one had skated clean they would have won. So Michelle not only had to be perfect; she had to be perfect and have her rivals make mistakes! Sasha was her own worst enemy. The judges didn't need to have an excuse to mark her down, because Sasha always failed to come through in the long program at Nationals.
    So very true!

  13. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by giselle23 View Post
    Look at her technical marks at 2000 Worlds for her flawless, 7-triple performance. Room was left not just for Irina but also for Maria Butyrskaya!
    Michelle was the first skater of the last group! What should the judges have done--not leave room for Irina and defending champion Maria, even when both had 7-triple programs planned?

  14. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by museksk8r View Post
    I never claimed that Michelle was the most original or versatile skater ever, but in comparison to Sasha, Kwan was more original and versatile than Cohen. Michelle had a knack for skating to music pieces that no one had ever heard in skating competition before and, stylistically, she did attempt to challenge herself from what was comfortable to her.
    I never said anything about originality. I said versatility. Skating to the obscure music does not alone make somebody versatile. Original, sure. Versatile, no.

  15. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by AJ Skatefan View Post
    The answer to this questions seems very obvious. Kwan beat Cohen in the majority of their head to head matchups. Kwan was a better skater.
    I do think Kwan is better than Cohen by a landslide, but this logic is flawed in so many ways. I could list many examples of skaters who lost the majority of head to head match ups to inferior skaters.

  16. #56

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    Quote Originally Posted by fenway2 View Post
    I do think Kwan is better than Cohen by a landslide, but this logic is flawed in so many ways. I could list many examples of skaters who lost the majority of head to head match ups to inferior skaters.
    Go for it. List them please.

  17. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by AJ Skatefan View Post
    Go for it. List them please.
    You didnt ask me but:

    Ito vs Witt
    Many other skaters vs Witt (arguably)
    Lipinski vs Kwan (I believe Tara have a winning record of 5-4, if we only include individual events)
    Slutskaya vs Kwan from 2000 onwards (although I guess there are some who would argue Slutskaya was overall atleast as good a skater from 2000 onwards, but many would say otherwise)
    Schuba vs Lynn
    Zayak vs Sumners (well in the opinions of many anyway)
    Fratianne and Poetzsch vs Watanabe, Marie Allen, Biellmann, especialy Biellmann
    Baiul vs Chen
    Kerrigan vs Harding
    Hughes vs Cohen (I believe Hughes has the winning record)
    Trenary vs Harding

  18. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by judgejudy27 View Post
    You didnt ask me but:

    Ito vs Witt
    Many other skaters vs Witt (arguably)
    Lipinski vs Kwan (I believe Tara have a winning record of 5-4, if we only include individual events)
    Slutskaya vs Kwan from 2000 onwards (although I guess there are some who would argue Slutskaya was overall atleast as good a skater from 2000 onwards, but many would say otherwise)
    Schuba vs Lynn
    Zayak vs Sumners (well in the opinions of many anyway)
    Fratianne and Poetzsch vs Watanabe, Marie Allen, Biellmann, especialy Biellmann
    Baiul vs Chen
    Kerrigan vs Harding
    Hughes vs Cohen (I believe Hughes has the winning record)
    Trenary vs Harding
    don't forget Klimova/Ponomarenko vs Bestemianova/Bukin. K/P were so far superior it wasn't even funny. I would even mention Wilson & McCall vs B/B as I thought W/M were also superior.

  19. #59

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    Quote Originally Posted by gk_891 View Post
    don't forget Klimova/Ponomarenko vs Bestemianova/Bukin. K/P were so far superior it wasn't even funny. I would even mention Wilson & McCall vs B/B as I thought W/M were also superior.
    B&B had more speed and power in their skating than either of these teams in 1988.

  20. #60

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vash01 View Post
    B&B had more speed and power in their skating than either of these teams in 1988.
    But a lot less content.

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