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26 February 2010 @ 01:09 am
Olympics: Ladies' Long Program  
Last one before the exhibition where I may (or may not) wax poetic some more. Anyhoo, on with tonight's thoughts on the skating and results. With some overall skating thoughts for the Olympics too.

I recognize that but for the teensiest bit of fighting for one of her jumps, Kim Yu-Na's program was perfection, but ... I have to admit, it left me a little bored. And I find that I like her more than her skating. :shrugs: I just don't connect to her skating. Ah well. Still, with that said, she is a beautiful skater and she deserved the gold. Handily.

In fact, I think the top six landed where they should have. I thought that Mao Asada skated MUCH more organically and fluidly tonight than her short. It's a shame she flaked out on a couple of the jumps, but she landed her triple axels and overall, did a beautiful routine. Unfortunately, based on her reaction, she wasn't pleased with her placement.

Joannie Rouchette. Well, if anyone was slightly overscored, I think it was her. She stepped out of two jumps slightly and I don't think she was penalized at all. But, you know what? I don't care. I know exactly how she feels right now, I've been there. Not with the pressure, obviously, but with unexpectedly losing your mother. There's nothing like it and that she held it together as she did was amazing, and deserved that medal accordingly for what she put out there despite what was going on. Simply put, I do think that extenuating circumstances do count sometimes. This is one of those times. Plus, she is a beautiful skater. I think after my beloved Mirai (love her so much!), I walked away with Joannie as my second favorite female skater. I'm happy she got the bronze, and I hope that whatever is after life, her mom was able to see her performances.

I'm evil, I don't care, I'm glad that Racheal Flatt fell two slots even with her highly-touted "consistent" skating, and personal best. She's consistent, fine, but she looks like a lumbering ox out on the ice. Period.

(I didn't watch Lepisto, but she knocked Flatt out of the top six and for that alone I say: GO HER! And thanks to Lepisto and Ando's performances, Flatt isn't in the top five and therefore won't be in the skating exhibition. Thank goodness, I won't have to watch her hulk across the ice one more time this Olympics. Although, I was QUITE annoyed that frickin' Hammond brought up Flatt during Mirai's moment. Geez!)

As for Ando in fifth place, Lord, have I ever seen a skater at the Olympics performing halfway decently look so terribly unhappy and just bored out on the ice like I saw her tonight? I don't think so. She's lucky that her jumps are so good and technically she's so precise, because that's why she at least landed in fifth.

Finally, saved my personal best for last: MIRAI NAGASU!!! She was light and graceful, charming and beautiful. Her jumps were fantastic, her spins (no nosebleed this time!) and footwork wonderful and I clapped wildly when she finished. And I hoped and hoped that she'd get 4th. I knew she wouldn't medal; I knew that. But going into this based on the commentary and what-not, she seemed like an afterthought, even in comparison to Flatt, and so I desperately wanted to see her outdo all but the obvious front-runner favorites. And not only did she do that, but she also actually DID outdo one of the front-runners (Ando). So I was as thrilled as she apparently was with her career-best score (from 106 to 126! -- I think) landing her nicely in fourth place. Go Mirai!!

All in all, I'm fairly happy with how the figure skating turned out this Olympics. Obviously, I would have liked (and I'm sure he would as well) if Jeremy Abbott hadn't choked, but Zhao/Zhen -- my pick -- won the Gold in pairs, Virtue/Moir -- who became my second pick -- won the Gold in dance, Lysacek -- never would be/will be my pick - deserved his Gold in mens, and Yu-Na -- my realistic pick, 2nd (unrealistic) pick -- won a deserved gold. And Johnny Weir and Mirai kicked ass! I wish Belbin/Agosto had done better, but as I've been saying since the Nationals, I do not think they have strong programs this year, so at least they did fantastic with what they had. And I picked up a new skater and dance team that I adore (Daisuke Takahashi and Virtue/Moir).

Lastly, one more note -- Sandra Bezic and Tom Hammond, please do the US viewers of figure skating a big ole' favor and SHUT. THE. HELL. UP! Damn, they were so annoying. Scott had a few moments, but was pretty good overall. On the other hand, Bezic reminded me of why I loathe her commentating over and over again, and Hammond, with his cheesy puns and punchlines, made me want to punch *him.* Ugh.

And on that cherry note ... until the next skating event. Bring on the Worlds! :)
 
 
 
Sarah :): Olympic Rings.sarah_p on February 26th, 2010 06:42 am (UTC)
Re: the commentators, Hammond's LACK OF ANY SINCERITY is what drives me nuts. At least I BELIEVE Scott Hamilton, you know? He's a PERSON up there. And his reactions to Joannie's skating were just really genuine and real and I'm impressed with him putting himself out there like that.

Yu-Na's score was INSANE (!!!!). I mean, I knew she skated well, but, WOW.

Mirai Nagasu is the most charming little skater EVER. She did an amazing job!
Arabian: A/J -Squee!arabian on February 26th, 2010 07:03 am (UTC)
Yes, it was like Hammond was either reading from some index cards, or just waiting for the opportunity to throw out one of his soundbites. Ugh.

At least I BELIEVE Scott Hamilton, you know? He's a PERSON up there.

I admit it, for the most part, I love me some Scotty Hamilton and he's generally my favorite commentator in skating. (I also love Dick Button.)

Yu-Na's score was INSANE (!!!!). I mean, I knew she skated well, but, WOW.

I KNOW! I was expecting something in the mid-30s, but DAYUM!

Mirai Nagasu is the most charming little skater EVER. She did an amazing job!

Yes, this! She's so very, very charming. I just adore her.
sourisvho: Yessourisvho on February 26th, 2010 06:43 am (UTC)
All in all, it was a great skating Olympics, with the medal winners all doing really well and nothing being a splatfest. I love it when everyone does well.

I really love Mirai and am thrilled she ended up fourth. Her spins are to-die-for. It would have been fabulous if she'd medaled, but at the same time, I wouldn't have wanted to knock out any of the medalists to get her on the podium. And she seemed so thrilled with fourth, that I think it's just fine. Given how concerned I was about the U.S. women coming in, they did FANTASTIC.

I'm thrilled that Yu-Na won, if only because of the INSANE pressure that was on her. I would have been devastated for her if she'd crumbled. People always root for the underdogs, but I think it's so awful for people who are "supposed" to win and don't. They get treated like a loser and a choker, and that's not right. And it's nice that Brian Orser is her coach.

I feel a bit bad for Mao Asada, who clearly was hugely disappointed and also had a huge amount of pressure on her. But of the two, I preferred Yu-Na. And Mao got her two triple-axels, so she made history.

I do think Rochette was probably overmarked, but like you, I'm fine with it, given the situation. I don't think that she messed up enough so that Mirai could've come up from sixth to third, so it's not a huge deal. It's not like she skated badly, just a few snags. And I certainly wouldn't have wanted Miki Ando to end up third.

Word on Rachel Flatt. She may do all the moves, but she's not pleasant to watch. I hate to be snarky about a 17-year-old, but she just lumbers. No elegance to her at all.
Arabian: Feelings Journalarabian on February 26th, 2010 07:06 am (UTC)
It really was some great Olympic skating. I think it may have been the first ladies portion since 1994 that wasn't a splat-fest (I think). I didn't get back to really watching the Olympics again until Torino after Lillehammer, but I remember reading about plenty o' splats.

I really love Mirai and am thrilled she ended up fourth. Her spins are to-die-for. It would have been fabulous if she'd medaled, but at the same time, I wouldn't have wanted to knock out any of the medalists to get her on the podium. And she seemed so thrilled with fourth, that I think it's just fine.

My thoughts exactly.

Re: Yu-Na, yes, I'm happy for her because I can't even begin to imagine what would have awaited her had she not won, so yay for her. And she did deserve it.

I hope that in the days/weeks to come, Asada (and her country) can be consoled by the fact that she DID make Olympic (and skating) history.

I do think Rochette was probably overmarked, but like you, I'm fine with it, given the situation. I don't think that she messed up enough so that Mirai could've come up from sixth to third, so it's not a huge deal. It's not like she skated badly, just a few snags. And I certainly wouldn't have wanted Miki Ando to end up third.

Again, pretty much a big fat ditto! Same for the "lumbering" Flatt.

No elegance to her at all.

This.

drops0fjupiterdrops0fjupiter on February 26th, 2010 02:46 pm (UTC)
Her spins are to-die-for.
Yep! I was mesmerized!
Arabian: Joie - Rosy Smilearabian on February 26th, 2010 07:20 pm (UTC)
She's actually known for having the best spins. Rightly so. :)
kaffyr: Sarah Danceskaffyr on February 26th, 2010 07:26 am (UTC)
Kim Yu Na's performance may have been the most beautiful, strong, and gorgeous performance I've seen in years. Just as Mirai Nagasu clicked for you, Kim Yu Na clicked for me. I do like Nagasu as well. And I cannot agree with you more strongly about how ... common (is that too classist a term?) Rachael Flatt's performances are. She's apparently nice; she's an intelligent 17-year-old bound for Stanford. That's great, and I hope she hangs up her skates permanently and finds another field in which to be fantastic.

Joannie ... I am so glad she made the podium, and I admit that's my Canadian bias, and my incredible respect for what she's done.

It's interesting about how perception can differ between viewers: I was so happy with the relative quiet that Bezic, Hamilton and Drummond provided me. Compared with other years, and compared with commentators for some of the other Olympic sports, they were extremely restrained.

What is it about Bezic that you don't like? (I'm neutral about her for the most part, so I'm just wondering.)
Arabian: Rose_Thinkingarabian on February 26th, 2010 07:41 am (UTC)
See and that's the thing with Yu-Na (and Nagasu), I think you can understand why Mirai clicks for me, and I can completely understand why Yu-Na clicks for you. To me, those are the best skaters, when even if you don't get it yourself, you completely get why *others* get it because the skater is THAT special.

Oh, no, don't get me wrong, I was happy with the quiet and quite shocked actually. It was just, erm, when they did speak that I wanted to throw something at the tv.

What is it about Bezic that you don't like?

She always sounds so superior to me like she knows everything and she's pointing it out as a favor to all of these stupid viewers. Of course, I know that she isn't thinking that, but it comes across that way to me. Also, I feel that she spends too much time being negative about the skaters (to the point where when a routine like Yu-Na's happens, she can barely contain herself -- which is the one thing I do like about her (she reacted much the same way to Oksana's program at Worlds in 93 when she won). Other than that, though, when she's pointing out things, even when it's good, there's just this note in her voice where it sounds like she's trying to find a negative there, though.

Also, she tends to psychoanalyze the skaters as if she knows EXACTLY what they are thinking and feeling at that very moment whenever Sandra decrees it.

I don't know, I can't explain it beyond that. She just really bugs me.

ETA: Obviously, I agree re: Joannie and Flatt.

Edited at 2010-02-26 07:42 am (UTC)
leosgreens: billbeatrixleosgreens on February 27th, 2010 12:34 am (UTC)
Agree with all your posts, and do you know how annoyed I was to discover Bezic still commentating?! CRIPES!
Arabian: Belbin & Agostoarabian on February 27th, 2010 01:10 am (UTC)
I'm pretty sure we've bitched about Bezic in the past. Uh huh.
sorryno: cute face s/psorryno on February 27th, 2010 08:05 am (UTC)
Oh my goodness, I LOOOOOVE MIRAI! That girl is just tooo cute and so full of energy -- and it shows in her skating! She was the MOST interesting skater out there to me. I LOVED her genuinely happy response to her scores, LOVED her little smile before her skate (b/c her coach told her to smile). Adorable!

Kim - eh.
Mao - nice jumps... and I really felt for her when she saw her scores :(

Exhibitions?! When??
Arabian: Sheldon & Penny - TWSNarabian on February 27th, 2010 04:11 pm (UTC)
The Skating Exhibition Gala is today. :)