The Shibutanis Thread 6: Paradise Found

GloriaW

Active Member
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The Shibs are going to Taiwan on Saturday. I wonder what they're doing there.
Ooh! One of my sisters lives in Taipei. I'll have her keep an eye out. Another US ambassador trip? They've done a bunch in Asia. Maybe a project with one of their brand partners. Tumi? Ralph Lauren? Alex seems to have something going with Leica cameras. They featured his photos on their Instagram account. He has a great "eye" as they say.

I thought their skating looked so good on the Stars On Ice tour. Impressive given how non-stop busy they have been off the ice. Maia especially looks stronger and more confident than ever. The Anaheim crowd was definitely Uber-fan-ing pretty hard for the Shibs.
 

SCeline

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119
I agree with GloriaW that skating-wise, they look as strong as ever. Watching Maia especially in the Stars On Ice show, she looks so confident. She literally radiates strength. I thought this was more than subtly highlighted by the way Jeff Buttle assigned certain choreographic highlights in group numbers to Maia. The split lift carry screamed "Make Way for the Queen!"

It's understandable to think that a return to competition is not looking very likely for them. They continue to be such standouts as far as continuing to find exciting opportunities outside the skating world. And yet, if there are athletes who I would trust to know how to navigate a successful return to competition, it would be Maia and Alex. The way they took ownership of their careers, applying their smarts and integrating non-traditional inputs into their skating, give me a lot of confidence that they would be potent forces to be reckoned with should they decide to return to competition heading into the 2022 Olympics. Tessa and Scott certainly set a precedent. Momentum in ice dance especially, can be so fickle, and one could debate whether the leaders exiting the 2019 season limit opportunities for others or not, including those ranked below them or returning former leaders. I definitely see how Maia and Alex could define their own unique path to being very real contenders in 2022, without necessarily competing in 2020.
 
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CaliSteve

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771
Most likely... but V/M only came back the season before the Olympics. It's possible. I am not ready for them to retire!
I agree with your "most likely". It seems to me they are moving on to other opportunities. In addition to their skating, they did a great job in their social media marketing and networking that open the door to a lot of opportunities.
 

VGThuy

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29,931
I have no hopes that the Shibs are coming back...but if they plan to, then maybe having another year would do them some good to really prepare for it and maybe work on things people have said they needed to work on to be from just vying for a medal and being actual true contenders for higher placements. However, not competing puts them at a huge disadvantage and they will be a bit rusty compared to rising teams and now World medalists who are working on things and competing in the elite level right now. I think we'll find out sooner rather than later if they plan on competing for the 2020-2021 season as they'll need a coaching base (now that Marina left to go to Florida) and we'll see less of them traveling and attending events on social media. Right now, I'm just going to adopt the mindset that they aren't coming back and will be surprised if they do.
 

SCeline

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119
For those in L.A., the Shibs will be hosting a screening of the new film The Farewell with Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin at the ArcLight Hollywood at 4:45pm this Saturday:

This makes me smile. Maia and Alex have always, and continue to "walk the walk" embracing the "responsibility" that comes with their more visible profile to be positive and supportive out in the broader world, going beyond their lives as athletes. Last summer, they also hosted a screening of the Crazy Rich Asians movie.

 

SCeline

Well-Known Member
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119
Am enjoying watching them, always growing, always on the move.

As YouTubers at VidCon with their agency UTA

Alex dancing it up with Olympic skiing legend Lindsey Vonn at her career celebration.

Maia's abs putting the 'sport' in Ralph Lauren sportswear.
 

VGThuy

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Not publicly. They haven’t even told us if they retired yet. I’m sure they have an idea or have plans, but for now it’s just private.
 

Spiralgraph

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1,940
Not publicly. They haven’t even told us if they retired yet. I’m sure they have an idea or have plans, but for now it’s just private.

Just a side comment, but VGT, your new username made me pause a moment until I realized you were you, if that makes sense! :wall:
 

VGThuy

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Love seeing Maia's work outs on IG, even on her birthday. She seems to have taken it to another level. I can't believe she's 25 already. I remember when she and Alex came to my attention when she was 14 at 2009 Junior Worlds and then won the World bronze at 16.
 

vanillashake

Banned Member
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270
One thing I wonder about them is if they are friends with Lambiel. They often post pictures with him on social media in the past. Or is it that they just work with him often, but they still do even after Pyeoncheng when they might be semi retired.

Lambiel is such a wonderful person, it is great if they are close with him. The Shibutanis are wonderful people too. I just am not sure how they would know him that well unless they worked with him.
 

Sylvia

Wishing I could go back to the Lake Placid JGP
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59,645
BOOK NEWS!


Maia & Alex will be among the featured speakers here: http://www.usjapancouncil.org/us_japan_council_annual_conference
The U.S.-Japan Council (U.S. & Japan), is pleased to present the 2019 USJC Annual Conference, to be held from November 4 to 5 in Los Angeles, California.
...
And in the same complex just prior to the conference (Nov. 1-3), the Japan America Society of Southern California is presenting Japan Cuts Hollywood, a film festival celebrating Japanese cinema.
(CC: @VGThuy)
 

VGThuy

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I'm really proud of them. I was wondering what Maia had been working on when she would share stories that included her laptop screen but would cover the screen to not reveal what was on there. I didn't think they were writing a book, and a detective/mystery series for middle school-aged children to boot. I guess if I can't enjoy their competitive skating anymore, I can look forward to seeing what other projects they will be working on. They seem to have their hands in plenty of jars now.
 
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