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I've been watching the Skate Canada coverage on NBCSN and all I have to say is...

FTLOG Ashley, SHUT UP!  She is knowledgeable and her explanations of elements and what might be causing the skaters to earn or lose points are helpful, but she does not have to fill every. single. second with chatter.  I feel sorry for poor Tanith; it feels like she cannot get a word in edgewise.

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Their voices are so similar that I actually made it over halfway through the mens’ short before I realized there were two people commentating - and it was only because they talked over each other. *shrug*

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I complain about costumes a lot, but credit where credit is due. Papadakis/Cizeron have the best rhythm dance costumes! They picked a theme and committed to it! Maybe leg warmers will come back now!

ETA:

Edited by Jeddah
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Would someone who knows ice dance be willing to explain, please, how Papadakis/Cizeron are apparently so much better than Chock/Bates? I personally think the latter are far more entertaining, which is certainly subjective, but the technical difference - where the scoring spread was greater - baffles me. Watching the little box in the upper left corner, it seemed like P/C automatically got high execution scores on everything vs. more average ones for C/B. Are P/C's skills really that much better? 

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3 hours ago, justmehere said:

Watching the little box in the upper left corner, it seemed like P/C automatically got high execution scores on everything vs. more average ones for C/B. Are P/C's skills really that much better? 

I haven’t gotten to see either of their rhythm dances full out this season but I will say if you look at last season, P/C’s tango was vastly superior to everyone else’s.

Basically, P/C get 3+ GOE on almost all of their elements whereas C/B get around 2. Seems like out of the gate a lot of teams are struggling to get high levels with the Finn Step. Here P/C got a level 3 whereas C/B got a level 1. The Italian team actually got a level 4. The base value difference was 5.35 vs 6.60 vs 7.35 and then P/C got a huge GOE. Which I find strange that while the Italians had a higher base value with their lower GOE they actually scored less than P/C did for their level 3 because their GOE was higher, 8.84 vs 9.92. Outside of the Finn Step, C/B had the same base value as P/C.

Their skating skills ranged from 9.5-10, C/B from 8.75-9.5, and G/F from 8.0-9.25 accounting for the differences in program components. However, the Italians (G/F) would’ve beaten C/B had it not been for negative GOE on their twizzles, their base values were actually higher than P/C but they don’t get those high GOEs. The +5 system really benefited P/C.

Hope that helps.

Edited by healthnut
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Just finished the mens.

Omg Shoma! I am not even a fan of his skating but the footage of him sitting and crying during K&C breaks my heart. Not to mention the painful falls before he got there.

Surely they can send his parents to sit with him during K&C. Or someone he knows to give him a hug. I was so distracted after watching him I didn't even enjoyed the rest of the competition despite being a Nathan fan.

Poor kid.......

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Haven't watched any of the men yet, but watched the last few ladies. So happy for Mariah! Only saw her SP from a random fan cam video, but her free skate was so beautiful. She even beat Zagitova in the free!

This was my first time seeing Kostornaia. I think she's my favorite of the three new Russian ladies we've seen so far this year. Nobody else has the tech to beat Trusova, but Kostornaia has absolutely gorgeous 3As, and is a lovely skater. Plus she doesn't look as much like a child to me on the ice (I think she is older than the other two). Though her program is a bit of a mishmash.

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Thanks healthnut. If P/C's elements have greater difficulty, that makes sense. I guess I'm wondering about quality of skating in general to get such consistently high GOEs over everyone else. Are they really that much better? I will say that I loved their Free Dance today. The spoken aspect was fine - neutral there. However, I thought their performance was incredibly beautiful.  

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I haven't seen P/C's spoken word Free Dance yet, but when the topic came up before it reminded me of a program my high school's winter guard did years and years ago that won an international competition. It was to a spoken word recording of Maya Angelou's "On the Pulse of Morning". It was great (I was not in it, just watched it a bunch since I was in marching band). (Found an old video here in two parts--I told you it was ages ago.)

So I guess I have a preconceived favorable notion to creatively done spoken-word performances, and am looking forward to seeing P/C's.

Edited by redpencil

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Great job, Mariah! Only a few points more and she would have beaten Zagitova for silver. Who would have thought that, only last year?! I love seeing skaters improve.

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1 hour ago, justmehere said:

Thanks healthnut. If P/C's elements have greater difficulty, that makes sense. I guess I'm wondering about quality of skating in general to get such consistently high GOEs over everyone else. Are they really that much better? I will say that I loved their Free Dance today. The spoken aspect was fine - neutral there. However, I thought their performance was incredibly beautiful.  

I think, based purely on what I’ve learned from watching ice dance on TV and what I’ve gleaned from the knowledgeable folks here, the things that P/C do well to give themselves an edge over other teams are the kinds of things that are more difficult to perceive through watching them on a screen. Things like speed, edge quality and control, and small choreographic touches to enhance the performance don’t pop as obviously as something like a well done quad salchow. I know the skills often rewarded in ice dance are the kinds of skills that are less obvious for a casual fan or viewer to notice and appreciate. Even after all these years, I STILL struggle to notice and appreciate those skills and not just get overtaken by the razzle-dazzle.

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Watching P/C and C/B back-to-back was wonderful and illuminating. P/C was like watching ice dancing as performance art—it didn’t even feel like they were doing individual elements. The lifts and spins came out of nowhere. They were all of a piece. C/B felt like watching the best version of a more traditional program. It felt like a blend of a competitive and a show program. Their lifts were very showy and “look at me” in the best possible way, and their commitment to the theme was superb. 

I know H/D have an edge over C/B in terms of speed and power/projection, but C/B have the better programs and performance quality.

Edited by specialj67
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On 10/27/2019 at 6:29 PM, Darknight said:

Evgenia in my opinion will not make a World's team this year. I still can't believe this is the same skater who broke records and went undefeated for two seasons.

Heck, Zagitova, reigning World and Olympic champion, might not make the World team.  

On 11/1/2019 at 11:16 PM, justmehere said:

Would someone who knows ice dance be willing to explain, please, how Papadakis/Cizeron are apparently so much better than Chock/Bates?

From what I can tell from the commentary, Madison Chock tends to skate on the flat of the blade and not be on the correct edges in some of the steps?  I think you have to be pretty familiar with the different patterns to know what is wrong.  

Edited by Ruby Gillis
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I wish there was a way for Evegnia to be able to skate for a different country, just so we could continue to see her compete.  Surely Russia would let her skate for one of their close allies?*

*I heartily doubt that would happen.

Edited by KittenPokerCheater
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On 11/2/2019 at 10:45 AM, Mellowyellow said:

Just finished the mens.

Omg Shoma! I am not even a fan of his skating but the footage of him sitting and crying during K&C breaks my heart. Not to mention the painful falls before he got there.

Surely they can send his parents to sit with him during K&C. Or someone he knows to give him a hug. I was so distracted after watching him I didn't even enjoyed the rest of the competition despite being a Nathan fan.

Poor kid.......

In case you haven't seen it, there's an audience clip floating around that shows the kiss and cry from a different angle. There was at least one JSF rep by the stairs who appeared emotional and supportive. Shoma did say that the tears were due in large part to the enthusiastic audience support he got despite a rough skate.

Raf might be a grump but even he showed respect in his own undemonstrative way, handing over some of Shoma's presents and offering a fleeting clap.

There were a lot of mishaps during this tournament, including the poor ice conditions, but that moment with Mariah awarding Kostornaia with her gold medal made me laugh.

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On 11/2/2019 at 10:45 AM, Mellowyellow said:

Just finished the mens.

Omg Shoma! I am not even a fan of his skating but the footage of him sitting and crying during K&C breaks my heart. Not to mention the painful falls before he got there.

Surely they can send his parents to sit with him during K&C. Or someone he knows to give him a hug. I was so distracted after watching him I didn't even enjoyed the rest of the competition despite being a Nathan fan.

Poor kid.......

That was hard to watch. I felt so bad for him. He needs a coach.

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1 minute ago, Jeddah said:

That was hard to watch. I felt so bad for him. He needs a coach.

Why doesn't he have a coach?  What's the story?  I was hoping one of the announcers would address the elephant in that particular room.

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My understanding (though I don't know how accurate this is) was that his previous coaches felt like he needed a change and basically asked him to leave. His jump technique has been iffy for awhile and he definitely seemed to have plateaued a bit in that situation. It was clear to me that something needed to change. I don't know why he hasn't found someone else, though. Basically everyone has said he's a skater who needs someone behind the scenes pushing him, so I'm not sure why this situation has persisted as long as it has.

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Shoma is supposed to be working with Stephan Lambiel for at least a little while. He will also be accompanying Shoma to Rostelecom in a couple of weeks. 

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Lambiel won't help Shoma with his jumps. Look at his current pupils. Shoma doesn't need help with his artistry; that's his gift.

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Shoma looks to me (and I am far from an expert) like he maybe needs some help with the mental aspect of the sport in addition to technical jumping help. Presumably he can land most of these jumps consistently in practice—not necessarily the pre-competition, open to the public practices but everyday practices—or he wouldn’t have them in his programs. And if he can, in fact, land them in practice but not in competition, then that seems to me like a psychology issue rather than a skills deficit in jumping. Of course, my entire premise could be wrong if it turns out he can’t land the jumps in practice, either. 

Are Hawayek and Baker a couple off the ice? I totally get that vibe from them (and for what it’s worth, I NEVER got that vibe from Scott and Tessa—when you look like you choreograph how long you’re going to stare into each other’s eyes when you take the ice, it doesn’t scream “natural”). 

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Watching Shoma was heartbreaking. :( He's been one of my favorites for years, and I hate to see him in such bad shape emotionally/mentally, nevermind his skating. I hope he can find a coach that helps him through this.

But on the plus side, Kevin Aymoz was wonderful! He's such a refreshing, unique skater who looks like he truly enjoys every moment he's on the ice. In this age of the Quadpocalypse where everyone's starting to look the same, he stands out in such a welcome way. Here's hoping his star is on the rise and he'll become more of a presence in mens' skating.

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10 hours ago, Jillibean said:

Are Hawayek and Baker a couple off the ice? I totally get that vibe from them

Yes, they're a couple -- same with Chock/Bates and, formerly, Hubbell/Donohue.

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On 11/4/2019 at 8:19 AM, Jillibean said:

Are Hawayek and Baker a couple off the ice? I totally get that vibe from them (and for what it’s worth, I NEVER got that vibe from Scott and Tessa—when you look like you choreograph how long you’re going to stare into each other’s eyes when you take the ice, it doesn’t scream “natural”). 

V/M started that OTT approach to center ice. Soon *everyone* was doing it and it looked, IMO, ridiculous. Yes,  Tessa's & Scott's intense stares did look the phoniest. 

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I love Hawayek and Baker.  They have a little different look since he is such a small guy, but they always draw me in.  I was sorry they didn’t medal at Skate Canada, but watching Gilles/Poirier defeat Hubble/Donahue almost made up for it.

I hope Hawayek/Baker can keep improving and remain a top U.S. ice dance team.  Being an ice dancer in the U.S. is kind of like being a female singles skater in Russia right now.  It’s a dog fight at the top.

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On 11/3/2019 at 10:25 PM, redpencil said:

My understanding (though I don't know how accurate this is) was that his previous coaches felt like he needed a change and basically asked him to leave. His jump technique has been iffy for awhile and he definitely seemed to have plateaued a bit in that situation. It was clear to me that something needed to change. I don't know why he hasn't found someone else, though. Basically everyone has said he's a skater who needs someone behind the scenes pushing him, so I'm not sure why this situation has persisted as long as it has.

This is shocking. I wonder why Japanese Fed will not give him suggestions or maybe they did and he didn't take it. Shoma can go to Alex in IL. He did during off season. It's sad because he is so talented but his jumps makes me cringe. 

5 hours ago, Libby96 said:

I love Hawayek and Baker.  They have a little different look since he is such a small guy, but they always draw me in.  I was sorry they didn’t medal at Skate Canada, but watching Gilles/Poirier defeat Hubble/Donahue almost made up for it.

I hope Hawayek/Baker can keep improving and remain a top U.S. ice dance team.  Being an ice dancer in the U.S. is kind of like being a female singles skater in Russia right now.  It’s a dog fight at the top.

And it's sad ice dance isn't mentioned more. I get ladies are popular but we have huge talent in ice dance. It's crazy to see how many ice dancers can easily make top 5. 

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Skater struggling with triples and can't skate a clean program? Make them learn quads. Eteri logic. 

So Nationals will be Bradie, Mariah, and Alyssa?

I was watching an awesome skater from China. She is 12 and will be going junior next year. Nini is her name. It's going to be interesting to watch her develop. I love seeing skaters outside of the big three feds in my opinion(USA, Russia, Japan) podium and skate. 

Also, good news, Kolyada's surgery went well. 

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7 hours ago, Darknight said:

And it's sad ice dance isn't mentioned more. I get ladies are popular but we have huge talent in ice dance. It's crazy to see how many ice dancers can easily make top 5. 

Yeah.  Here we (Americans) are with several top ice dancers and NBC can't bring themselves to broadcast ice dance.  But they sure need to show the ladies so we can watch the Russians and Japanese medal over and over while our ladies can't do any quads (& the only one who can do a triple axel isn't old enough for the Grand Prix). 

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Hawayek & Baker are fifth after Rhythm Dance at Cup of China, ouch!

The men’s field is WEAK, why couldn’t Jason Brown be skating this weekend?

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Other than hitting all the key points in the pattern dance, I don’t understand the point difference between Nikita/Katsalapov and Chock/Bates? Can someone explain this? N/K were pleasant but blah.

Love seeing Han Yan back in the mix, but that whole men’s competition was Rough.

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1 hour ago, specialj67 said:

Other than hitting all the key points in the pattern dance, I don’t understand the point difference between Nikita/Katsalapov and Chock/Bates? Can someone explain this? N/K were pleasant but blah.

Much of the difference between Sinitsina/Katsalapov and Chock/Bates are levels.  S/K beat or at worst tied C/B on everything.

Finnstep - Level 3 vs. Level 1

Pattern Step - Level 3/3 vs. Level 2/2

Twizzles - Level 4/4 vs. Level 4/3

Lift - the same

Step sequence - the same

They lost on GOE on all the elements except the lift, as well.

Then there's about a point difference in PCS.

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Hehe tech panel has gone wild!!! Calling everything under the sun! Results all worked out fair enough though but it's amusing to see people having meltdowns about it.

I do wonder why the sudden onslaught of calls for everyone.

I am curious to see if my textbook Rika gets called. Should be interesting.

***

Random fun fact: Bradie also competed in pairs briefly when she was a junior!!! Hehe I got the biggest kick finding that out!

Edited by Mellowyellow
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So great to see Team China give it their all here, and go 1-2 in both Pairs and Men.

Good judging, too, generally. IDC much about the calls since they're never actually consistent or correct, but the placements were correct, and that makes me happy (for ladies, men, and Pairs anyway. Didn't care enough about ID).

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13 minutes ago, healthnut said:

Chock & Bates won the free dance and beat S/K by four points. Not enough to win, but still exciting!

I’m happy for Evan and Madi. I like them so much better than H/D. 

Not a great showing for Hawayek and Baker, though. I wasn’t a fan of their FD this season, but I’m hardly a skating expert. However, it seems the judges tend to agree with me.  I think they are more suited to the dramatic, emotional, storytelling free dances, especially with Jean Luc’s range of expression. This one seems inauthentic, and also the costumes are unattractive. I know Montreal is the epicenter of ice dance right now, but I wonder if it’s not a bit too crowded. 

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On 11/8/2019 at 9:50 AM, annzeepark914 said:

Yeah.  Here we (Americans) are with several top ice dancers and NBC can't bring themselves to broadcast ice dance.  But they sure need to show the ladies so we can watch the Russians and Japanese medal over and over while our ladies can't do any quads (& the only one who can do a triple axel isn't old enough for the Grand Prix). 

Yes. I love C/B programs this year. I've watched junior ice dancers and novice too and they're so good. Sucks we can't see it and all we talk about are the ladies. Our ice dancers are the Russian ladies but I don't think USA federation or anyone cares enough about ice dance. The ladies event is the most popular. 

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Anna got called out for her edges and I read Danii isn't happy with her score. What did they expect? Anna is a sweet girl and skater but her team did her a disservice. If she is called out like Evgenia is then what? I know she is going the 4Lz for points but it should be done right. It's sad ISU allows skaters to get away with poor technique because the next generation will have poor technique too and coaches will not fix it. Stop rewarding poor technique. What happens if the judging system changes again? Then what? 

Boyang has the most amazing 4lz. 

I like C/B programs this year. H/B I don't know about them. I just can't get into them. Sad, because I've followed them since juniors. 

And ISU the reason why skating is losing fans because I can't watch it anywhere. 

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6 hours ago, Darknight said:

And ISU the reason why skating is losing fans because I can't watch it anywhere. 

But you can on their YT channel, now, though, using a proxy if needed.

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I love the new ISU YouTube set up for skating. Really high quality feed. They either block me or they don't and when they block me I tell them I'm in the Czech Republic or New Zealand and it works like a dream.

Also amuses me to see which competitions I'm blocked from. So far I've been blocked from Skate America and IdF. Didn't think I'd get blocked from the France one so that was interesting. 

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On 11/8/2019 at 8:48 PM, SeanC said:

Much of the difference between Sinitsina/Katsalapov and Chock/Bates are levels.  S/K beat or at worst tied C/B on everything.

Finnstep - Level 3 vs. Level 1

Pattern Step - Level 3/3 vs. Level 2/2

Twizzles - Level 4/4 vs. Level 4/3

Lift - the same

Step sequence - the same

They lost on GOE on all the elements except the lift, as well.

Then there's about a point difference in PCS.

Yes, but HOW are S/K getting levels that are that much better than C/B? The Olympic Channel broadcast Cup of China dance last night. All of it, and even Ben Agosto seemed to think that C/B were underscored in the rhythm dance, which cost them the gold medal. They killed it in the free dance, but couldn't make up a five point deficit to S/K, who seem to get the benefit of being OVERscored quite frequently, at least from my point of view.

Tanith said that Chock and Bates' free dance is her favorite of the season. It's soooo good. Oh, how I wish they'd win Nationals and take the Entitlement Twins down a peg or two. 

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13 minutes ago, ChicksDigScars said:

even Ben Agosto seemed to think that C/B were underscored in the rhythm dance,

He was also baffled about Hawayek and Baker's lowered standing.  It sounded as though Tanith could see why they were struggling, but unfortunately we didn't get the benefit of hearing the two of them debating the point.  (Why on EARTH would we like to hear two highly qualified, highly articulate experts discuss technical points of this highly technical sport?!!)

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3 hours ago, ChicksDigScars said:

Yes, but HOW are S/K getting levels that are that much better than C/B?

By hitting the requirements better.  C/B have had poor RD results at both their Grand Prix events now.

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uh-oh...who's on the right? The bronze medalist in pairs at that Olympics? Can't think of her name but I think her partner/exhusband married, oh no, can't think of her name (Michelle beat her at 1996 Worlds). 

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12 minutes ago, annzeepark914 said:

uh-oh...who's on the right? The bronze medalist in pairs at that Olympics? Can't think of her name but I think her partner/exhusband married, oh no, can't think of her name (Michelle beat her at 1996 Worlds). 

Isabelle Brasseur

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2 hours ago, annzeepark914 said:

uh-oh...who's on the right? The bronze medalist in pairs at that Olympics? Can't think of her name but I think her partner/exhusband married, oh no, can't think of her name (Michelle beat her at 1996 Worlds). 

Isabelle Brasseur was paired with Lloyd Eisler and they won the bronze in both '92 and '94.

Eisler is now married to Kristie Swanson (BTVS movie) who he met on a celebrity skating TV show.  He abandoned his wife and several kids including a newborn for her.  He and Kristie have been married 10 years or so.

Brasseur and Eisler had a very athletic and adventuresome style of skating which was different from the more artistic and classical pairs like Gordeeva/Grinkov and Mishketunok/Dmitriev who took gold and silver.  B/E were really exciting to watch, IMO.

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