View Poll Results: How would Harding's '94 Nats programs have scored at the Olys?

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  • Gold

    2 7.14%
  • Silver

    2 7.14%
  • Bronze

    10 35.71%
  • 4th

    4 14.29%
  • 5th

    3 10.71%
  • 6th or lower

    7 25.00%
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  1. #1

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    How would Tonya Harding's '94 Nats programs have done at the Olys?

    If Tonya Harding's '94 Nationals programs had been her programs in Lillehammer '94, where would she have placed?

    '94 Nats SP: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGagm6DfZG4

    '94 Nats LP: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UGkw4Vq1LYA
    "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"

  2. #2
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    I think the judges had their scalpels out for Tonya and were not going to give her anything at the 94 Olympics. They would have placed her 4th in the SP behind Kerrigan, Baiul, and Bonaly, or maybe even 5th behind Chen. Only not lower since they couldnt place her lower with that standard of performance, with Chen, Sato, and Chouinard all making big mistakes, and the rest doing easier combos. Then in the LP they would have placed her 6th behind Kerrigan, Baiul, Chen, Sato, and Bonaly. So overall her finish would have probably been 6th.

    Had it not been for the knowledge of the attack on the Kerrigan though she might have been placed 2nd in the SP behind Kerrigan or 3rd behind Baiul at worst, and then 4th in the long behind Kerrigan, Baiul, and Chen, which would have placed her 3rd or 4th overall. Even then I am not sure as she was no longer U.S #1, and was seen by the judges as a skater whose best days were behind her, and combine that with her low 2nd marks, so I think she probably would have needed to pull something extraordinary out (a triple axel probably) to really make her mark.

    This was nothing like 1992 when she entered the Olympics as a strong gold medal contender. Despite the field being weaker by 1994 she was not perceived as anywhere near a contender and that makes a big difference, and then you add the general feeling of disgust towards her due to the news coming out and most of the World believing she had a part in the Kerrigan clubbing. She was not going to face a friendly panel even with a good skate.

  3. #3
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    I think if she wore that blue dress from Nationals the judges, especially our British judge, would have been justified in deducting for her failure to abide by standards of modesty and decency.

  4. #4

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    Harding always got good marks from international judges when she skated well, including at Skate America 1993, just before the Olympics in competition with Baiul.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by TheIronLady View Post
    I think if she wore that blue dress from Nationals the judges, especially our British judge, would have been justified in deducting for her failure to abide by standards of modesty and decency.
    Was the British judge Vanessa Riley?

  6. #6
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    The judges were pretty angry with the Tonya v. Nancy hoopla, and I think they would have put her 5th or maybe 6th behind Szewczenko. She probably would have deserved third in the FS though.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by bardtoob View Post
    Harding always got good marks from international judges when she skated well, including at Skate America 1993, just before the Olympics in competition with Baiul.
    Well I didnt see the event but she and her team claimed she skated very well at NHK 93 and still finished 4th behind Sato, Bonaly, and Chen, who all skated poorly and made major errors at that event. She also was placed lower than Sato and Chouinard in the Olympic short program, even though both made far more serious errors than she made, although her overall skate was a little sloppy and tired looking.

    It was good she won the SP at Skate America but she beat Baiul who did a double lutz-double toe combo so I wouldnt read much into that. More importantly this was before the extreme negative and wave of hatred towards her after the Kerrigan related news came out to the World.

  8. #8
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    The LP looks empty to me. A lot of crossovers and simple gliding between the jumps.

    I would give that program 5.7s for technical and 5.6s/5.5.s for artistic impression.

  9. #9

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    Due to the "what if" nature of the thread, I was assuming a no wack scenario. She was never going to place post wack.

  10. #10

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    Yes, I meant if the event was scored legitimately. I think she could have been 2nd/3rd in the SP and 3rd in the LP. I say bronze.
    "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"

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by orbitz View Post
    The LP looks empty to me. A lot of crossovers and simple gliding between the jumps.
    I actually don't mind this if the skater has beautiful, secure edges...and she certainly did. Tonya was incredibly well-trained at her basics and she seldom gets enough credit for it.

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by siouxdonym View Post
    I actually don't mind this if the skater has beautiful, secure edges...and she certainly did. Tonya was incredibly well-trained at her basics and she seldom gets enough credit for it.
    I found myself admiring the skid she incorporated into her sp.

  13. #13
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    I actually feel Harding placed too low in the SP as it was. I am not a fan of her LP that year though. Its possible she might have snuck a bronze in, but I think Chen had the superior LP and deserved her medal. (Actually Chen should have won silver as it was). Harding had better spins than Chen, but at that point Chen had overtaken her or at least matched her technical difficulty on a good day (no triple axel or 3/3s from Harding). Both had great basics but Lulu was far more artistically polished at this point and had better in-betweens.

    i also think Sato outskated most of the field in the LP, so at best I have Harding 4th or 5th depending on how the oridinals end up.
    Last edited by Lnt175; 07-04-2013 at 04:47 PM.

  14. #14
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    Even with her Nationals performances and totally fair marking Harding would not have deserved a medal probably. Chen in the long program had 7 triples, 2 triple lutzes, and only putting her hand down on one jump. She had also had more decent spins than her later years, better footwork and spirals than Harding, and much better choreography and artistry than Harding had at that point. Sato would also have deserved to beat Harding's Nationals long program with her own done at the Games, but she had bombed the short. Harding's National performances were very good and great to see after a 2 year slump but to medal at the Games even had the whack never happened she would have needed to step it up another big level for the long program, which she was capable of. Her short was good enough to keep her in contention for any medal, but a long program with only 4 clean triples and no triple combination, and weaker artistry than the other top skaters, well she would need more than that.

    The only way Harding could get the bronze even with fair marking is to be 2nd in the short which there could be a case for her with her Nationals performance and Baiul's two footed combo in short, and Chen bumped to 5th, and then 4th in the long over Sato and Bonaly only since Sato wasnt in the final flight. Still I voted 4th overall.

    In reality the judges would have probably placed her 6th or 7th overall either in front of or behind Szewcenko, but I assuming fair marking.

    I thought long program results at the Games should have been Sato first, Chen second, Kerrigan third, and Baiul fourth in fact. Who would have won the gold overall with those results and short program results staying the same.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by usova94gold View Post
    Even with her Nationals performances and totally fair marking Harding would not have deserved a medal probably. Chen in the long program had 7 triples, 2 triple lutzes, and only putting her hand down on one jump. She had also had more decent spins than her later years, better footwork and spirals than Harding, and much better choreography and artistry than Harding had at that point. Sato would also have deserved to beat Harding's Nationals long program with her own done at the Games, but she had bombed the short. Harding's National performances were very good and great to see after a 2 year slump but to medal at the Games even had the whack never happened she would have needed to step it up another big level for the long program, which she was capable of. Her short was good enough to keep her in contention for any medal, but a long program with only 4 clean triples and no triple combination, and weaker artistry than the other top skaters, well she would need more than that.

    The only way Harding could get the bronze even with fair marking is to be 2nd in the short which there could be a case for her with her Nationals performance and Baiul's two footed combo in short, and Chen bumped to 5th, and then 4th in the long over Sato and Bonaly only since Sato wasnt in the final flight. Still I voted 4th overall.

    In reality the judges would have probably placed her 6th or 7th overall either in front of or behind Szewcenko, but I assuming fair marking.

    I thought long program results at the Games should have been Sato first, Chen second, Kerrigan third, and Baiul fourth in fact. Who would have won the gold overall with those results and short program results staying the same.
    I think Kerrigan or Chen would have won in that case.

  16. #16

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    With factored placements and assuming no change in the short program, Kerrigan wins in the scenario described above:
    Kerrigan - 0.5+3.0 = 3.5
    Chen - 2.0+2.0 = 4.0
    Sato - 3.5+1.0 = 4.5
    Baiul - 1.0+4.0 = 5.0

    I agree with those long program placements too and I think the podium pretty much works out right too. Baiul had mistakes on jumps in both programs and was weak technically overall (although I do think her SP was a beautiful piece of choreography...LP not so much), so she's off the podium. Sato's mistake in the short puts her too far behind Chen and Kerrigan to pass them, but her fantastic free is enough to pass Baiul for the bronze. And I feel like Kerrigan's short was a clear cut above Chen whereas Chen's free was only marginally better than Kerrigan's, so I do think that Kerrigan was the better skater over two programs.

    Back to Harding...assuming "fair" judging in the context of a panel that awarded the gold to Baiul , I think she would have been 4th. I'd guess 3rd in the short above Bonaly and then her cleaner free would easily beat Bonaly's messy program, but I don't think it had enough content to stay ahead of Chen. Although with the way Chen was frequently undermarked in that time frame, I actually would not rule out a bronze medal. In the hypothetical where the whack happened and is influencing the judging, then 6th is probably about right.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Erin View Post
    Back to Harding...assuming "fair" judging in the context of a panel that awarded the gold to Baiul , I think she would have been 4th. I'd guess 3rd in the short above Bonaly and then her cleaner free would easily beat Bonaly's messy program, but I don't think it had enough content to stay ahead of Chen. Although with the way Chen was frequently undermarked in that time frame, I actually would not rule out a bronze medal. In the hypothetical where the whack happened and is influencing the judging, then 6th is probably about right.
    Exactly my thought.

  18. #18

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    Here's another question to add fuel to the fire (and because it really is the off-season lol): what if Tonya had skated her Nats programs at Olys, but landed the triple axel cleanly? Would she be on the podium? Could she have won the whole thing? (Gotta remember that Baiul and Kerrigan weren't perfect.)
    "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"

  19. #19
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    Its harder to say as Harding was no longer US number 1 since late 91, early 92. She hadnt ladned a clean 3A in competition in 2 1/2 years. Her skating just took a huge dive after Albertiville. She skated fairly well at one of her Gps in the 93-94 season, but I'm not sure it meant she was on her way back at all. Kerrigan meanwhile, was on her way back after poor skates at 93 nats and worlds; had won the pre Olympic competition in Lillehammer and trained the hardest she ever did that final season.
    That being said it would be very hard for the judges to ignore a clean 3A, followed by a relatively clean LP by a woman so in that case yes she would deserve the gold.

  20. #20

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    It's true, Tonya hadn't landed a triple axel in competition in a long time, but she was hitting a fair share of them in practice leading up to Nats and Olys. Of course, she popped the jump in both events, but not because she didn't have it. It would have been very interesting to see what would have happened if she landed it, especially at Olys.
    "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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