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2013-14 ISU Figure Skating Season: The Road to Sochi

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He has potential...and I suppose it could be worse. At least the present do is well-groomed and tucked up. But I can't recall a Men's Singles skater in history who wears his hair in a bun. And if he isn't "particularly masculine," then a more masculine-looking cut could only help. After all, the devil is in the details...and this is an affair all about presentation.

The skaters are evaluated on their masculinity?

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The skaters are evaluated on their masculinity?

Well, it's NOT called "Men's Singles Figure Skating" for nothing, is it? And in pairs/ice dance -- there are definitely assigned male/female, yin-yang roles. Ideally, the man is supposed to show off the woman to best advantage. If I were a judge, that would be a small factor for me in comparing one skater to another.

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Well, it's NOT called "Men's Singles Figure Skating" for nothing, is it? And in pairs/ice dance -- there are definitely assigned male/female, yin-yang roles. Ideally, the man is supposed to show off the woman to best advantage. If I were a judge, that would be a small factor for me in comparing one skater to another.

That's absurd. This is figure skating remember, not exactly the most masculine sport to begin with.

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That's absurd. This is figure skating remember, not exactly the most masculine sport to begin with.

Your comment is absurd and bizarre. Why, just becuz it's Figure skating doesn't mean that every male competitor is effeminate and that there are skaters who can convey masculinity. Let's just take the current crop. I'd say Javier Fernandez and your own Scott Moir are NOT effeminate skaters. Stokjo? Candeloro? Petrenko? Lysacek? Yagudin? Jobert? They also happen to be great skaters and dancers on ice.

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Well, it's NOT called "Men's Singles Figure Skating" for nothing, is it? And in pairs/ice dance -- there are definitely assigned male/female, yin-yang roles. Ideally, the man is supposed to show off the woman to best advantage. If I were a judge, that would be a small factor for me in comparing one skater to another.

Yeah, not buying it.

The code of points is clear. "Masculinity" isn't there. And singles is different from pairs or ice dance where gender roles are more pivotal.

Your anatomy qualifies (or disqualifies you) as a Men's Singles skater. That's it.

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I think we probably agree on what qualifies as masculine and I suspect we both prefer more masculine skaters. That said, i don't really see evidence that the judges do.

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Ice dancing being one of my fave sports, I must say I was impressed at Ilinykh/Katsalapov's new Black Swan program. Bobrova / Soloviev have something good too.

That eaches the level of my 2 favourite free dances ever, "Bonnie Clyde", by Delobel/Schoenfelder (on the music of the Untouchables by Morricone), and "Seven deadly sins" by Denkova/Staviski (re-orchestration of Lacrimosa).

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But we're prob gonna have davis/white and virtue/moir at the first 2 spots as always, yet as much they deserved it the previous seasons, I do not think they're the best 2 teams this year. Would be great if judges could come up with a fairer result.

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Davis & White are the best this and next year!!

I'm not a fan of their dance on Sheherazade. But they're probably gonna get gold anyway. And I think other teams like Ilinykh and Katsalapov (im not just saying that because of his plastic qualities) improved a lot while they stagnated. They're not even faster anymore and I question the relevance of their music choice. I'd say the same and even worse about Virtue & Moir and Pechalat & Bourzat, saw them in Paris and I was amazed at how slow, uninspired they were. Those 2 teams haven't stagnated, they re skating at a lower than before.

Is it the motivation caused by Sochi, idk, but the 2 Russian teams thrilled me more than the rest (the Shibutani's have gotten much better too) and are really standing out to me this season.

But yeah - your protégés will certainlly get their first olympic gold in Feb.

lower level *

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I'm not a fan of their dance on Sheherazade. But they're probably gonna get gold anyway. And I think other teams like Ilinykh and Katsalapov (im not just saying that because of his plastic qualities) improved a lot while they stagnated. They're not even faster anymore and I question the relevance of their music choice. I'd say the same and even worse about Virtue & Moir and Pechalat & Bourzat, saw them in Paris and I was amazed at how slow, uninspired they were. Those 2 teams haven't stagnated, they re skating at a lower than before.

Is it the motivation caused by Sochi, idk, but the 2 Russian teams thrilled me more than the rest (the Shibutani's have gotten much better too) and are really standing out to me this season.

But yeah - your protégés will certainlly get their first olympic gold in Feb.

lower level *

Yeah, I wasn't crazy about "Scheherazade" either. But as you said, they'll probably get gold in Feb anyway - becuz it's their turn. They're really only the US' gold probables this year.

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evt_header.jpg

Results

Men

1. Tatsuki Machida, Japan

2. Maxim Kovtun, Russia

3. Javier Fernandez, Spain

Ladies

1. Julia Lipnitskaia, Russia

2. Carolina Kostner, Italy

3. Mirai Nagasu, USA

Pairs

1. Aliona Savchenko/Robin Szolkowy, Germany

2. Vera Bazarova/Yuri Larionov, Russia

3. Kirsten Moore-Towers/Dylan Moscovitch, Canada

Ice Dance

1. Ekaterina Bobrova/Dmitri Soloviev, Russia

2. Kaitlyn Weaver/Andrew Poje, Canada

3. Madison Chock/Evan Bates, USA

Next stop: Fukuoka for the Grand Prix Finals.


Entry list for 2013 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating Finals

http://www.isuresults.com/events/fsevent00051492.htm

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4 Russian ladies in the finals; and NO Yuna Kim? Where is she?

Other surprises: Javier F is NOT in the men's final 6 either. Has he peaked too soon?

I notice that many are using Russian composers' works for their full program. THis is going to be a very long-hair competition at Sochi.

Edited by baron-pierreIV

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4 Russian ladies in the finals; and NO Yuna Kim? Where is she?

Other surprises: Javier F is NOT in the men's final 6 either. Has he peaked too soon?

I notice that many are using Russian composers' works for their full program. THis is going to be a very long-hair competition at Sochi.

Yu-na is injured. foot injury if i can recall correctly

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4 Russian ladies in the finals; and NO Yuna Kim? Where is she?

Other surprises: Javier F is NOT in the men's final 6 either. Has he peaked too soon?

I notice that many are using Russian composers' works for their full program. THis is going to be a very long-hair competition at Sochi.

Yu-Na indeed has a foot injury. She is set to make her debut at one of the senior B-level competitions, the Golden Spin of Zagreb (love the name). It starts just a few days from now, December 5.

http://olympictalk.nbcsports.com/2013/11/04/yuna-kim-figure-skating-return-foot-injury-golden-spin-zagreb/

From there, we could possibly see her at Korean Nationals. But my understanding is that may not even be necessary for her. I guess we'll see!

Uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuh! Daisuke Takahashi has withdrawn from the Grand Prix finals. But still leaves the 3 other Jap-men in there.

Intense news about Takahashi. He looks GREAT at NHK. Too bad about his injury, because the Japanese men's field is so stacked, it makes you wonder what his fate at Japanese nationals will be.

Regarding Javier Fernandez, you may be right that he peaked too early. He has not looked 'on' this season.

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Yuna really is a singular talent. I hope she can find the joy again. She seems burdened in those videos. It's the beautiful abandon that makes her so wonderful to watch and that isn't something that can be manufactured or forced.

Another thing that sets Yuna apart is that she really is a consummate actress on ice. I loved the James Bond short program (especially at Trophee Bompard) because she committed to it so completely. Send in the Clowns is obviously totally different, but I believe that she can find a meditative, heart-breaking way into it. Adios Nonino offers her much more opportunity to demonstrate range and contrast, it definitely needs a lot more attack in certain portions than she gave it.

I have no doubt both programs CAN be magical if she really wants this. The question in my mind is whether she does really want it or whether she's mainly bowing to the pressure of her country. The injuries certainly haven't helped and, of course, the clock is ticking. None of that is exactly conducive to relaxing into "beautiful abandon." We'll see.

As for the fashion, here's my take: Yuna would be elegant in a burlap bag. I agree that she can do better in the costume department, but I doubt those will be her Olympic choices.

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She's only at 80-90% recovery, so I don't think she had the confidence to go full out on her routine. And the early fall in her long program did nothing to put her at ease for the rest of her skate. She may even miss the 4 Continents tournament later in January to use that time to recover from her injury, and head straight to Sochi. She needs her stamina back too, she looked tired out there.

I don't think she feels that pressure from her country this time around. She was in retirement until a year ago, and the country would've accepted that. She came back on her own accord.

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It was clear that she wasn't in top condition. That's got to be the result of the time off plus the injury.

The early fall definitely knocked the wind out of her. Her facial expression and body language was visibly deflated afterwards.

I hope she can deliver her very best in Sochi, she really is extraordinary. Mao is exceptional, but Yuna is a once in a lifetime talent.

I'm glad to hear you think she really wants it.

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