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  1. #21
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    Who knows what the standards would be. Sato did 6 clean triples at both the 94 Olympics and 94 Worlds and seemed to be still improving as a skater. Slutskaya never did more than 6 triples before 2000, and was a terrible artistic skater. Kwan was great but her rise to the top was made easier by the dearth of strong veteran holdovers by 96/97. Only Chen was left, and even her not for long.

    Sato has 4 World titles to 4 for Kristi. At the World Pros Sato leads 3-2 when they met head to head. Sato participated more regularly in the other pro events though, while Kristi seemed to deem many of them beneath her. One could argue Sato is the best pro skater ever, over Kristi. One could also argue Biellmann based on longevity. It is too bad Ito didn't return to pros after her 96 comeback. Amateur skating was past her by then, but she still could have continued to be a great pro career, and make it a great 3 way rivalry with Kristi and Yuka at the top.

    Kerrigan and Baiul were mediocre pros and no threat to any of Yuka, Kristi, or Midori in pro events. Even Biellmann was closer competition to those three than Kerrigan and Baiul in pros, and Biellmann has beaten all of Kristi, Midori, and Yuka in pro events too, despite being like 15 years older. Kerrigan and Baiul should be embarrassed with their level of skating as pros, especialy Baiul an Olympic and World Champion.

  2. #22
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    Keep in mind though that Slutskaya was capable of doing 3/3s as early as the 96-97 season. Both she and Lipinski raised the bar considerably. Kwan was so far ahead of both that she didn't need more than a clean set and maybe her triple toe/triple toe, but anyone else had to have a full set of triples and a 3/3 to pass Lipinski at the end of the 97 season. Slutskaya had a slump, but came back at worlds.

    I agree Sato was on par or better than Yamaguchi as a pro.

  3. #23
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    Sato and Yamaguchi were BOTH incredible pros, and very different. Both expanded their range artistically while also maintaining tremendous baseline technical levels. Not sure I could name one ahead of the other. Both just tremendous in my opinion.

  4. #24
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    Where could Ito have placed at the 96 Worlds had she skated well? 3rd or 4th, higher than that, lower?

    94 Olympics where would she have placed and how would she have skated. How would she have placed if she skated well but without a triple axel (with a triple axel she wins almost gaurntee in that years field which is why I ask without).

  5. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnt175 View Post
    Keep in mind though that Slutskaya was capable of doing 3/3s as early as the 96-97 season. Both she and Lipinski raised the bar considerably. Kwan was so far ahead of both that she didn't need more than a clean set and maybe her triple toe/triple toe, but anyone else had to have a full set of triples and a 3/3 to pass Lipinski at the end of the 97 season. Slutskaya had a slump, but came back at worlds.

    I agree Sato was on par or better than Yamaguchi as a pro.
    You overrated young version of Slutskaya. 96 she was a great technical skater with huge jumps and fast spins which the judges loved but no 2nd triple lutz or triple-triples. 97-99 she occasionaly did a triple-triple but had trouble skating clean programs ever.

    She might have lost bronze at the 96 Worlds had Ito or Butyrskaya skated better, and only won silver at the 98 Worlds since most ofthe Olympic field missed. She even fell in the short there. At the 95 Grand Prix final in December she did 2 clean programs and lost to Kwan who had a mistake in both. It wasnt until 2000 she became a great skater doing triple-triples and better artistry but still choked and didnt do her best in big events (2000 Worlds, 2001 Worlds, 2002 Olympics).

    She probably wins 97 Worlds if she dont fall in short skate though.

  6. #26
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    Had Ito been skating well in 96 without the 3A, I do think she could have won bronze over Slutskaya, but it would not be assured. Butyrskaya as is, IMO should have won it over Slutskaya. I do know she was no big comeptition to Kwan during this time. Kwan was so far ahead of everyone except Lipinski, that Slutskaya would have needed a Kwan melt down to overtake her.
    Slutskaya was always a judges favorite though, and even prior to 2000, she was receiving marks that were too high for some of the skates she put out (96 worlds being one of them).

  7. #27
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    Slutskaya should have been below both Butyrskaya and Szewcenko at the 96 Worlds. I nearly barfed when I saw the marks they gave her with a huge ass fall, some other shaky landings, no great technical content, and a junior level presentation. Yeah she wa the reigning European Champion and had been 2nd at the GPF so she had some street cred, but it is not like this was a former World Champion, she didnt even have a World medal yet, and was skating 1st in the final flight. I am not sure even if Butyrskaya, Ito, or Szewcenko had skated perfectly she would have lost the bronze at those Worlds. Szewcenko definitely not, Butyrskaya or Ito maybe, but they would have to be totally perfect to be placed even over Slutskaya and her fall. Butyrskaya put her hand down on her last triple loop and lost the bronze even though it was still a way better skate.

    The time Slutskaya was most overmarked of all was the 2000 Worlds. I cant believe with 6 triples, no triple-triple, a big pop open mistake, and having to rearrange the program and overall lacking confidence and impact her other performances all season had had she still took 3 judges off Kwan's skate of a lifetime and nearly won. She also had higher technical marks than Kwan who had 7 triples, 2 triple lutzes, a triple-triple, and skated the fastest I ever saw her, but lost it barely on the presentation (still had a couple 5.9s even for presentation though herself). Slutskaya then complained to the media that she didnt win those Worlds, LOL!

    The judges did always love Slutskaya. At the 98 Olympics when she did only a double lutz-double toe in the short Chris Cuthbert of CBC said she would be slotted into 6th behind the 5 clean performances, but Paul and Sandra interjected they doubted that, the judges loved her and would still hold her up in 4th or 5th place more likely so she wouldnt be totally shut out of a medal chance (which they did). Scott Hamilton predicted the same thing on CBS before her marks even came up.

    In fairness to Slutskaya despite how much a judges pet she often was, her 2 World titles, 2 Olympic medals, and virtually all her Grand Prix final titles and world medals did end up being the correct result in the end. It is one of those cases so much wrong (many of her scores or program placings) still ended up thankfully being mostly right in the end. The only exceptions are her bronze at the 96 Worlds and her gold at the 01-02 Grand Prix final.
    Last edited by judgejudy27; 09-11-2013 at 02:21 AM.

  8. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lnt175 View Post
    It goes to show what a talent she was to be able to produce that at almost 27 years old.
    At *27* years old? Ha! Look at her now...as in this year.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uejr_-fJcUo
    You should never write words with numbers. Unless you're seven. Or your name is Prince. - "Weird Al" Yankovic, "Word Crimes"

  9. #29
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    Lnt175 I have a question for you since you seem to be a big Ito fan and followed her career closely. Do you believe Ito could have won the 94 Olympics (I am talking without Kristi, just the field that was there) without the triple axel? Without the triple axel, but skating well otherwise would she have had a chance at gold still and how much, or would she have been 3rd behind Baiul and Kerrigan in that case, or maybe even 4th. What is your view on that.

  10. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by bardtoob View Post
    Ito was asked to come back in 1995-96 by the Japanese Federation to secure World team spots because they did not think they had a skaters that could do that.
    How many spots were they wanting? I believe the rule had changed by then and it wasn't just the top finisher but the placements of everyone to create points for the next year. Something like all equal 11 makes 3 spots, all equals 22 makes 2 spots. So if Ito did really well it wouldn't matter unless they had other good skaters. I don't remember the other Japanese at the time, except the ones already pro (Ito, Sato). They did not get good skater again until Suguri in 99 or 2000.

  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by judgejudy27 View Post
    Slutskaya should have been below both Butyrskaya and Szewcenko at the 96 Worlds. I nearly barfed when I saw the marks they gave her with a huge ass fall, some other shaky landings, no great technical content, and a junior level presentation. Yeah she wa the reigning European Champion and had been 2nd at the GPF so she had some street cred, but it is not like this was a former World Champion, she didnt even have a World medal yet, and was skating 1st in the final flight. I am not sure even if Butyrskaya, Ito, or Szewcenko had skated perfectly she would have lost the bronze at those Worlds. Szewcenko definitely not, Butyrskaya or Ito maybe, but they would have to be totally perfect to be placed even over Slutskaya and her fall. Butyrskaya put her hand down on her last triple loop and lost the bronze even though it was still a way better skate.

    The time Slutskaya was most overmarked of all was the 2000 Worlds. I cant believe with 6 triples, no triple-triple, a big pop open mistake, and having to rearrange the program and overall lacking confidence and impact her other performances all season had had she still took 3 judges off Kwan's skate of a lifetime and nearly won. She also had higher technical marks than Kwan who had 7 triples, 2 triple lutzes, a triple-triple, and skated the fastest I ever saw her, but lost it barely on the presentation (still had a couple 5.9s even for presentation though herself). Slutskaya then complained to the media that she didnt win those Worlds, LOL!

    The judges did always love Slutskaya. At the 98 Olympics when she did only a double lutz-double toe in the short Chris Cuthbert of CBC said she would be slotted into 6th behind the 5 clean performances, but Paul and Sandra interjected they doubted that, the judges loved her and would still hold her up in 4th or 5th place more likely so she wouldnt be totally shut out of a medal chance (which they did). Scott Hamilton predicted the same thing on CBS before her marks even came up.

    In fairness to Slutskaya despite how much a judges pet she often was, her 2 World titles, 2 Olympic medals, and virtually all her Grand Prix final titles and world medals did end up being the correct result in the end. It is one of those cases so much wrong (many of her scores or program placings) still ended up thankfully being mostly right in the end. The only exceptions are her bronze at the 96 Worlds and her gold at the 01-02 Grand Prix final.
    The BEST summary of Slustkaya-era judging... I was aghast as well at some of the marks in 2000 Worlds FS.. That should've been 9-0 Kwan no questions asked; winning BOTH sets of marks convincingly..

  12. #32
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    Althought in one sense it was great news for Kwan that Slutskaya was so overscored and even took some judges off her with a clearly inferior performance at the 2000 Worlds. A strong case could be made Slutskaya did not even deserve 2nd in the LP over Butyrskaya, which would have not given Kwan the title if it happened.

  13. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by KimGOAT View Post
    Lnt175 I have a question for you since you seem to be a big Ito fan and followed her career closely. Do you believe Ito could have won the 94 Olympics (I am talking without Kristi, just the field that was there) without the triple axel? Without the triple axel, but skating well otherwise would she have had a chance at gold still and how much, or would she have been 3rd behind Baiul and Kerrigan in that case, or maybe even 4th. What is your view on that.
    The skating at the 94 Olympics was no great shakes, as is said Baiul didn't even do a 3/2 combo. Compare that to what Ito, Yamagichi, Harding, Bonaly and Kerrigan were doing just a few years earlier. Even Chen was at times going for 3/3 combinations. Granted the 3A for women was due to die down, and only intermitently in the last 20 years have we seen ladies doing it. If Ito came back for an Olympics I do think she would have been in good shape, and that includes all her triples. Without the 3A (assuming she missed it in Lillehammer) she still had 2 various 3/3s she was capable of. I have no doubt if she went clean, especially in the SP (which cost her the gold in Albertville) she would have won gold. She also had rep points with the judges as an old veteran who still has her skills. The key would be to land a clean Lutz combo in the SP to keep her in contention.

  14. #34
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    I never understood why Baiul couldnt do jump combinations. She had big powerful jumps with lots of flow out that were better than most of the top women at the time. Chen had smaller jumps that often had almost no flow out and even she still did more combinations than Baiul ever did. I think she just needed to buckle down and train them. Had there been more stronger technical skaters like Yamaguchi and Ito stay in I think she might have done that, or had she continued past 94 and faced the up and coming jumpers. I dont think it was lack of ability to do them, or atleast it shouldnt have been.

    The 3 triples she did cleanly in her Lillehammer LP were all outstanding, and much better than Kerrigan's, but then she two foots and struggles in combination attempts in others. She was almost an enigmatic jumper if that makes any sense.

  15. #35
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    I think thats part of it. After Kerrigan melted down at worlds, Baiuls next biggest competition (who went clean) were Bonaly and Chen. Bonaly had lots of difficulty but her skating was not seen as par for a top level skater (at least thats what the judges were telling her when she lost worlds). Chen also lots of difficulty, but her presentation was still growing, and she never got brownie points from the judges. So in that event she didn't need any real combinations to win. Then at the Olympics Kerrigan was no longer favored from the judges as she was before, regardless of how well she skated. Sato and Chouinard took themselves out of it in the SP. Chen had some issues herself in the SP, and Baiul lucked out again.

    So yes I'm sure she was very capable of doing combinations, but it didn't appear she needed them to win.

  16. #36
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    So had she been competing with Yamaguchi had she stayed in, or had stayed in and competed against Kwan, do you think you would have seen her explore her potential with jump combinations? Then again she had knee problems after 94, but she claims that is because her team used her to milk money out of her (and she got alot herself so the incentive was there) and show up alot of silly cheese pro events, even through a serious knee problem that she never recovered from. I am never sure to believe Baiul's post Olympic stories but it is an interesting take nonetheless. The last 2 years she has been sueing endless TV companies she claims went beyond guidelines when it came to her and even been winning some of those suits.

  17. #37
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    I'm not sure a 3/3 would have been needed absolutely, but at least a cohesive program and a second Lutz and at least one 3/2 to at least stay competitive with Chen and Kwan. After 96 I don't think she would be a factor, even without injury. Consistency problems were always an issue with her even in her prime.

    I didn't know Baiul was suing the TV companies in these days.

  18. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by judgejudy27 View Post
    Althought in one sense it was great news for Kwan that Slutskaya was so overscored and even took some judges off her with a clearly inferior performance at the 2000 Worlds. A strong case could be made Slutskaya did not even deserve 2nd in the LP over Butyrskaya, which would have not given Kwan the title if it happened.
    But somehow that season Slutskaya gained so much cred that she was suddenly on equal footing with Kwan on the second mark even though her posture or musicality or bodily expression or attention to detail in her choreography never really improved to a world class level.

    Quote Originally Posted by judgejudy27 View Post
    I never understood why Baiul couldnt do jump combinations. She had big powerful jumps with lots of flow out that were better than most of the top women at the time.
    It might have been a Soviet culture thing. They did't like to do combinations because they liked to show off the quality of their solo triples and probably didn't think that extra 2toe would add more merit. They would only do combinations when required (like in the short or when they have to repeat the jump). It's the same for many other former Soviet skaters of the 90s like Lavrenchuk, Malinina, even Butyrskaya.

  19. #39
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    The JSF had Yuka and Midori was making lots of money as a professional.

  20. #40
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    At the 94 Olympics these are what Midori would have had to do in order to achieve each placement:

    Clean short program and 7 triples clean long (no triple axel) or 6 triples long with triple axel = Gold

    Clean short program and 6 clean triples long- Could be anything from gold to bronze. Would depend how the judges choose to score. Would not be silver since Baiul and Kerrigan were almost tied, no room to split them. Might have changed ordinals and made Nancy win though. I think the judges would have given Ito lower artistic scores than what they gave to Baiul and Kerrigan though who were both overmarked, and Baiul was also very overmarked technically by a whole lot and should have been much lower than Nancy and Lu on that mark.

    Clean short program and 5 triples long- Probably only bronze for sure now. Might even be 4th in free skate behind Chen but her short program would put her above. Ito with clean short would be 2nd and Chen dropping from 5th to 6th in short now.

    Less than 5 triples or fall in short program- no medal.

    At 96 Worlds she would have had to skate cleanly with the triple axel in both programs and if she did that she could have beaten Slutskaya for the bronze. Would not win gold or silver since Kwan and Chen skated too well, and Ito's artistic marks would be much lower, and she was a bit past her best at that point as an amateur.

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