Obviously getting levels is a major difficulty for them now.I really don't get what's been going on with Hurtado/Khaliavin this season. At the end of last year it was looking like they had consolidated their position as the #1 and were pulling away from Smart/Diaz; this year, from the beginning, they've seemed completely off their game.
Apart from that, having 2 'introverted' programs this season didn't seem to do them any favors. I think ISU has sent a pretty clear message that they want to see more fun, exciting and upbeat programs - S/D's RD is exactly what they're asking for, whereas H/K's RD music is one of the slowest of all teams this year. Their modern flamenco FD is a good idea and a sophisticated program, but I feel that the music lacks intensity at some point.