U.S. Men 2020-21 season news & updates

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Sylvia

It's JUNIOR WORLDS week! :D
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Besides Krasnozhon's decision to retire and start at Texas Christian University Honors College this fall, two other U.S. men were removed recently from the International Selection Pool - Joseph Kang (12th in his senior debut at 2021 Nationals & 11th at 2020 Skate America) and Nicholas Hsieh (11th in Junior at 2021 Nationals).

Kang passed along to me that he "may return [to figure skating] at some point, but I have found passions in weightlifting & music [hip hop production/longtime classical pianist] that I would like to focus on in addition to college" this fall.

Hsieh informed me that he'll be "studying engineering in the College of Engineering at Cornell University... definitely [will] skate & play violin for fun." February 2020 local news story as a member of the Philadelphia Youth Orchestra:

From my April 4th post in this thread:
There are 28 men currently listed in the ISP - I've noted the 5 newly added ones below:

Lucas Altieri
William Annis
Lucas Broussard
Jason Brown
Nathan Chen
Jonathan Hildebrandt (new; U.S. Championship Series 2nd in Novice FS)
Tomoki Hiwatashi
Nicholas Hsieh
Joseph Kang
Liam Kapeikis
Joseph Klein
Alex Krasnozhon
Jimmy Ma
Ilia Malinin
Daniel Martynov
Samuel Mindra
Maxim Naumov
Matthew Nielsen
Eric Prober (new; 2021 Junior champion)
Camden Pulkinen
Jacob Sanchez (new; 2021 Junior pewter medalist)
Eric Sjoberg
Beck Strommer (new; U.S. Championship Series 1st in Novice FS)
Dinh Tran
Michael Xie
Robert Yampolsky
Maxim Zharkov (new; 2021 Junior men's competitor)
Vincent Zhou
 
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Marco

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Not to mention, this was the 2nd Olympic cycle where BOW was part of the equation - which is how Ashley wound up on the team over Mirai in 2014. Truly, it should not have come as any surprise.
Exactly. Ross never accomplished much at the international stage at or above the GP level in the 7 seasons following his Worlds debut in 2011. I don't agree that he suddenly gets to risk everything because he had nothing to lose and then get an Olympic spot. It's similar to how I don't like Irina gets to risk everything to win 2000 GPF because she had nothing to lose.

Although, discussions at the time were that Gracie and Ashley were the first 2 picks for the 2014 team and the decision was between Mirai and Polina for the final spot. Likewise, Nathan and Adam were the first 2 picks for the 2018 team and the decision was between Ross and Vincent for the final spot.

So Mirai and Ross didn't lose out the BOW contest to Ashley and Adam, they lost out to Polina and Vincent respectively.
 
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olympic

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I would rather Jason go again than Vincent, especially after the way Vincent imploded at Stockholm Worlds. Also, Vincent received his gift in 2018 when he was placed on the Olympic team instead of Ross Miner.
Rehashed tons of times. Ross had one good skate ... at Nationals that year. Nothing that would justify putting him on an Olympic team being based on BOW. I believe the last time Ross had an amazing skate was at the 2012 NHK Trophy. The USFSA made what was to be a smart choice w/ Vincent Zhou who finished 6th and ended up with a bronze at 2019 Worlds.
 
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Sylvia

It's JUNIOR WORLDS week! :D
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There are 15 ISU Junior age-eligible men currently listed in the ISP:

*William Annis -- clip of him landing a big 4Lo from a February practice: https://www.instagram.com/p/CO0z93KAybf/
Lucas Broussard (J6 at Nationals)
Jonathan Hildebrandt (U.S. Championship Series 2nd in Novice FS)
*Liam Kapeikis (J9)
*Joseph Klein (2021 Junior silver medalist)
*Ilia Malinin
*Daniel Martynov (J5)
Samuel Mindra (2021 Junior bronze medalist)
*Matthew Nielsen (J7)
Eric Prober (2021 Junior champion)
Jacob Sanchez (2021 Junior pewter medalist)
Beck Strommer (U.S. Championship Series 1st in Novice FS) - self-choreographed clip filmed recently by Jordan Cowan: https://www.instagram.com/tv/CPVkl1QnBDb/
Michael Xie (J8)
Robert Yampolsky
Maxim Zharkov (J12)

* = has had previous JGP experience

It's a shame USA still only has 1 men's spot per JGP (based on 2020 Junior Worlds placements) - link to the 2021-22 JGP general info thread in GSD: https://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/threads/isu-2021-22-junior-grand-prix-announcement.107694/
2020 Youth Olympian Liam Kapeikis debuted a Senior SP to the Overture from Man of La Mancha at the BC/YK Section's Victoria Day virtual competition on Saturday - video & protocol links are posted here: https://www.fsuniverse.net/forum/th...titions-virtual-whatever.108307/#post-6004739
Liam is coached by Keegan Murphy in the Vancouver area (his mother also coaches him in Wenatchee, WA) and his new SP was choreographed by Joey Russell. I've seen some good 3A landed by him in recent practice clips.
 

tony

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Adam brought plenty of attention to figure skating (in the US) during that Olympics and shortly after, just as Johnny Weir did in 2010. Obviously neither situation was because they won individual medals.

There are many on this board and in skating circles in general who are the very first to comment on how the personalities aren't big enough these days, the skaters have no skills to transition out of skating successfully, etc, and then when someone has a big personality, we are often quick to dislike and dismiss everything about it. I was right up front of thinking Adam was way OTT when he was just finding his footing (and seeming to always have to search for a punchline), but he fine-tuned, turned that into something big and lives a pretty nice life now. Can't fault him for that, and in the end, the LGBTQ community gravitated towards him, just as they did Weir, and most certainly introduced new fans to the sport.
 

Carolla5501

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Then Ross and his team should have been paying attention to the rules for the Olympic team selection. There was a thread the entire season discussing who had and hadn't built up their body of work. It shouldn't have been a surprise to anyone. I am getting very tired of the poor Ross was robbed meme. Pay attention to the rules people. That's the only lesson to learn there.
Ross’s coaches share this blame. Their interviews after the event pretty much indicated that they had just assumed if he did really well at nationals he would be on the Olympic team. Their whole season was planning to only peek at Nationals.
 

Carolla5501

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Adam brought plenty of attention to figure skating (in the US) during that Olympics and shortly after, just as Johnny Weir did in 2010. Obviously neither situation was because they won individual medals.

There are many on this board and in skating circles in general who are the very first to comment on how the personalities aren't big enough these days, the skaters have no skills to transition out of skating successfully, etc, and then when someone has a big personality, we are often quick to dislike and dismiss everything about it. I was right up front of thinking Adam was way OTT when he was just finding his footing (and seeming to always have to search for a punchline), but he fine-tuned, turned that into something big and lives a pretty nice life now. Can't fault him for that, and in the end, the LGBTQ community gravitated towards him, just as they did Weir, and most certainly introduced new fans to the sport.
My LGBLT friends admire Adam and ridicule Weir. In their eyes one is substance and one is fluff.
 

olympic

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I think in today's sports world, being a 'winner' carries less weight in determining popularity or a following these days, although it's still an important aspect. Social media has allowed many who would be invisible (unless they were a winner) a much greater degree of visibility.

But being #1 in your sport is still probably the most important thing
 

Sylvia

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Willin

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I honestly think Jason can get the spot no problems over Vincent, especially if he gets a quad. He's had lots of high placements despite his lack of quads - including a 2nd place SP at Worlds. That could mean really valuable points if they have him do the SP in the team competition. He's also a lot more reliable than Vincent. He's consistently top 10 at Worlds, has two 4CC medals, and three GP meals in the same span as one GP and one 4CC medal for Vincent.
 

Firedancer

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I honestly think Jason can get the spot no problems over Vincent, especially if he gets a quad. He's had lots of high placements despite his lack of quads - including a 2nd place SP at Worlds. That could mean really valuable points if they have him do the SP in the team competition. He's also a lot more reliable than Vincent. He's consistently top 10 at Worlds, has two 4CC medals, and three GP meals in the same span as one GP and one 4CC medal for Vincent.

I really think Nathan will do the SP in the team event and someone else will do the FS. With the men’s event being first, that will still give Nathan a few days between events. I also think Jason will have the BOW and will make the Olympic team
 

Karen-W

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I really think Nathan will do the SP in the team event and someone else will do the FS. With the men’s event being first, that will still give Nathan a few days between events. I also think Jason will have the BOW and will make the Olympic team
I don't. Nathan already has one Olympic team bronze, he doesn't need an Olympic team silver or another bronze.

The thing about BOW is that it relies upon a couple of seasons of competitive data, and it's really hard to compare 2 seasons ago to what is happening in the current season for some of these skaters. Malinin and Naumov were competing as juniors internationally in 2019-20 and would have this past season had there been a JGP. Hiwatashi did reasonably well at 2020 4CCs. Zhou had a rough 2019-20 fall and was hoping to bounce back at Worlds, which he didn't. Brown did well at 2021 Worlds. Then there's Paniot who hasn't even competed for the US internationally. Torgashev is coming back from injury and Malinin didn't even compete at Nationals either of the past 2 seasons due to injuries. I'm of the opinion that what these guys do this summer and fall, competitively, is going to factor much more heavily into any BOW discussion should Brown and/or Zhou underperform at Nationals come January.
 

Tahuu

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If Vincent can consistently score higher than Jason in the free skates domestically and internationally this season, he’ll have a good and maybe only chance to beat Jason for a spot at the team event.
 

Willin

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I think the other thing going for Jason is this: if USFS has 3 spots, they tend to like to send a fan favorite pick with a good body of work - both to Worlds and the Olympics. You could argue that Jason is an outside medal threat if someone messes up or he gets a quad or two, but realistically Nathan will be there to be the medal favorite. Depending on performance they may send Malinin, Torgashev, Pulkinin, or another younger skater as their "up and comer getting experience" pick. Meanwhile Jason has a great body of work, does a lot of social media stuff for USFS, and has been a team leader for USFS. He's had programs go viral in the past. He'd be great marketing and great TV for USFS along with a chance for good results if he goes. As long as he has a good season and a good Nationals, I'm not too too worried about him making the team. Vincent, on the other hand, has a longer road.
 

Aaron MB Fan

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Savoie is still one of my favorite men from anywhere among all the men I've seen since Wide World of Sports started to air figure skating.
Me too!! I still get chills every time I re-watch this performance from 2006 Nationals:
 

misskarne

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The thing about BOW is that it relies upon a couple of seasons of competitive data, and it's really hard to compare 2 seasons ago to what is happening in the current season for some of these skaters.
That's usually true.
Hiwatashi did reasonably well at 2020 4CCs.
....Yes, that same 2020 4CC where Jason won silver.
I'm of the opinion that what these guys do this summer and fall, competitively, is going to factor much more heavily into any BOW discussion should Brown and/or Zhou underperform at Nationals come January.
You seem really, really desperate for Jason to not make the Olympic team. Why? It's not Jason's fault that someone has to go to Nebelhorn to get the third Olympic spot.
 

jlai

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That's usually true.

....Yes, that same 2020 4CC where Jason won silver.

You seem really, really desperate for Jason to not make the Olympic team. Why? It's not Jason's fault that someone has to go to Nebelhorn to get the third Olympic spot.
I think most of us believe that Chen, Brown and Zhou are the favorites (in that order); that said, BOW is hard to use for some of these guys this Olympic cycle because of all the cancelled events. for Other skaters who deserve a chance to be even considered, USFS may have to tweak the BOW somewhat. Besides, they need to plan further down the line in case Chen, Zhou and Brown are all moving on, and the others need a chance at the big events to take their place if any of the three retires after 2022.
 

LeafOnTheWind

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You seem really, really desperate for Jason to not make the Olympic team. Why? It's not Jason's fault that someone has to go to Nebelhorn to get the third Olympic spot.
Yeah, but you seem to be really, really desperate to get rid of Vincent all the time so it evens out. As long as no one insanely turns against Nathan I am happy and that is all that matters to me. :saint:
 

Karen-W

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You seem really, really desperate for Jason to not make the Olympic team. Why? It's not Jason's fault that someone has to go to Nebelhorn to get the third Olympic spot.
Oh, please. I'm a fan of Jason's skating and have been since he burst on the senior national scene. But, I'm also realistic about his chances of making another Olympic team. Unless he gets a reliable quad that he's landing in competition regularly, I don't see any reason why Jason should have a stranglehold on the 2nd or 3rd spot on the US men's Olympic team; and unless he starts being a lot more consistent in competition, neither should Vincent. That being said, if I'm fairly handicapping the field, Vincent does have a technical advantage when he doesn't melt down.

My gut says that, should both Brown and Zhou falter at Nationals next year after having decent fall seasons (no implosions, but neither making the GPF), only one of them is going to get the benefit of BOW and my money would be on Zhou. If the USFS is going to be giving our 2nd/3rd guys a shot at an Olympic team medal, they're not going to give it to a guy who already has one if he doesn't deliver at Nationals. And, I'm pretty certain that one of the newer seniors will also make the team.
 

Barbara Manatee

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I don't. Nathan already has one Olympic team bronze, he doesn't need an Olympic team silver or another bronze.
Most US skaters seem to love the team event, and it's also a great chance to get comfortable in the venue and show you are the one to beat. Plus I cannot see Nathan turning down the opportunity/obligation to bring a medal home for his team mates and country. And himself - I think Mr. Multitasker needs all the medals.
 
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