Wednesday, March 20, 2013

ISU's Communication 1738: Ice Dance

I had been foot dragging on deconstructing this ISU document thing because I wanted to do lift comparisons first, but something in the section on twizzles - more than  one something - jumps right out at you, so I'm pushing this to the head of the line:

First: here's the ISU's Communication 1738: Ice Dance

ice dance scoring

Here's the extract on twizzles:

This Communication isn't the alpha and omega of twizzle scoring. It represents adjustments and clarifications to the scoring, I believe, and so should be understood in context, even if at the moment I'm not providing the context because I have to review the primary document first, not just this addendum.

One thing jumps out right away - beside the fact that two twizzles should merit no more than a GOE  -1.  Wait, that was a misreading. It's saying if the execution isn't simultaneous (what does that mean exactly? Unison? In sync?) for one twizzle, it loses a GOE point. For two twizzles to not be simultanous, it can be no higher than -1.

Curious how they define simultaneous. "Roughly at the same time?" "Don't start without your partner?" and how they differentiate when one team is a bit more simultaneous than another.

But back to that one thing that jumps out:

"Set of twizzles reflect the character of the chosen dance"

Wow Meryl and Charlie. Your twizzles reflect the character of sultry rumbas, prancy, skippy, happy, effervescent classical ballets, Yankee Polkas, Bollywood pastiches, big exuberant waltzes, tragic, theatrical adagios, AND tangos.

I know when they jumped into their twizzles in 2011 I thought - now THAT is tango character! No wonder they won Worlds that year! Same with Giselle. What is more Giselle than THOSE twizzles? They have such ballet character!

These twizzles are as magical as Charlie's hair.

Fast rotation of twizzles is, I believe, the speed of rotation around the skater's axis.

Twizzles executed at great speed is, I believe, the speed with which they travel down the ice.

Unremarked is what if you swerve left and right while also traveling forward? What if there is very often more than two arm lengths between yourself and your partner?

Of course, one observes that there is wriggle room built into these rules. Such as the word "Generally". As long as you are "generally" less than two arm lengths apart, does it really matter, in a move that lasts barely seconds, that you spend "some of the time" more than two arm lengths apart? Does that really mean you shouldn't be scored better than or the same as a team that's twizzling about an arm and a half apart (and even closer) while in unison? You're still doing it pretty much!

Surely when we watch Meryl and Charlie (and Gilles & Poirier for that matter) it's easy to see they generally meet this standard. They're twizzling close enough to reach out and hold hands at any point (right? Length of two arms?). (sarcasm!)

I think Scott and Tessa crush it with "character of the dance". They fucking crush it.

I think the ISU is judging a negative with Meryl and Charlie - meaning, judging the absence of something: "Well, it's not NOT in the character of the dance."

I can see not getting penalized for their twizzles not being in the character of the dance, because as long as they are placed well, they'll work with the music.

However. To actually take on board an extra GOE because the ISU has decided that no matter what Davis White do, short dance or long, those two hop and reach, catch foot and behind the back twizzles are in the character of the dance they're doing - no matter what dance it is? Every assigned pattern dance to date, and all of their long programs?

Again - enough to boost GOE specifically for twizzling in the character of the dance. There's plenty of stuff that penalizes you if you fail to do something, and I don't see these twizzles requiring a penalty - but to reward Davis White GOE for this? Really?

Why do Scott and Tessa even bother? In figure skating, skaters are judged relative to each other. But the ISU doesn't give a shit that Scott and Tessa's twizzles superbly reflect the character of the dance? Really? There's no difference there?

About the fast rotation of twizzles - well, suppose you jump into them with your upper body pitched forward and your quadracep and skate blade angled away from your body. You reach back and grab that skate blade and pull it in, going out of synch with your partner for that instant, but then you straighten out and your magical hair is whirring like a helicopter's blades. Where's the hair score? As long as your hair is swirling, the position of your body, your unison with your partner, the stability of your traverse across the ice (relative to your main competition's) is all eh meh who cares?

What's a fast rate of speed? Compared to whose? The other skater's hair which might be gelled and therefore not whipping about as impressively as yours?

I see "exit with running edge maintained" is a + 1 with no reference as to quality and duration of running edge, so Scott and Tessa, you totally wasted your time with the Carmen twizzles.

In the primary document, I would like to see if aspects such as unison of body line and synchronization are addressed, and also if the ISU cares or not if a twizzle is executed on a bent knee, as is your partner's, but not the same degree of bending, so you're sort of out of unison body line wise even in your flaws. If it is a flaw. Perhaps the ISU says the working leg in a twizzle just needs to be "mostly" straight.

Just looking at this it seems to me that Davis White are getting +1 and +1 for rotating quickly around their individual axis and for traveling across the ice at a rate of speed, and the ISU is not really scoring them relative to Virtue and Moir's speed. We all KNOW Davis and White are fast! Why verify?

I will need to look at the document that THIS document supplements for the answer to these additional questions.
P.S. - some skating fans will remember Sandra Loosemore's figure skating website. That page was always good for some clarification when fans got too worked up. "Character of the music" has been a thing for years, and fans run with it a little too far - further than the ISU has ever cared to travel. 

As an example, fans might declare that some fabulous Russian diva embodies the tango to where she has become tango itself, and scoff that some little white bread school girl is about as much a tango dancer as my pet poodle.

But, the ISU doesn't care about that sort of theatre shit, unless everything else is equal, which it almost never is, except if Virtue Moir and Davis White are competing against each other in an event.

The ISU was really lowest common denominating things there with "character of music". Possibly it's the same with "character of the dance". In a sport that includes I/K's "Ghost" program, and previously included Maxim Shabalin swinging Oksana around by the bungee cords, it's apparently something the ISU needs to spell out. So, it means this: If you are skating to Strauss waltzes, don't finish by killing your partner on the ice. If you've got Sade on your program cd, don't polka. That sort of thing. You know if the ISU didn't put this out people would do all that and more.

However, it's one thing to say "You must skate in the character of the music" (or dance) or risk a penalty, as in the hypotheticals above.

It's another to award a grade of execution point for doing it. This is a bonus. Davis and White are getting an extra point for twizzles that are in the character of the dance - by doing the same twizzles the same way in the same style for every single dance they perform. They are beating Virtue Moir in pcs.

So alrighty then. We can see that's legit as all get out.

P.S. - when a team of ice dancers such as Virtue and Moir come along and elevate what it means to twizzle "in the character of the dance", as they have, shouldn't the ISU recognize that the bar has been raised, just as they do when figure skating progresses from singles to doubles to triples to quads? When somebody started doing a quad salchow it got more points than a triple salchow. And when someone came along and did a triple salchow that was manifestly higher and covered more ice while airborne, that elevated the GOE of a triple salchow at least when the skater was competing against a less awesome salchow.

Or was the jumper wasting their time? Should Valosozhar's 3 twist REALLY get the highest GOE when you figure that other pairs do very nice, sharp split 3 twists - get on up there, the twist is tight, the catch is clean? Aren't V&T wasting their time getting WAY high in the air? Why shouldn't the pairs skaters who get pretty okay height get the same GOE? Figure skating is supposed to stagnate. I'm sure I will find that in the primary scoring manifesto somewhere.


  1. From this and the last few blog entries - it is extremely conspicuous how DW's twizzles are the same for years but they are continually getting higher points, while the rest of the top teams, especially VM, work their butts off to vary theirs, to perfect them -- and the judges are not rewarding accordingly. DW have stayed the same but the narratives everywhere are all about their improvements. It stinks.

    1. Furthermore, for people who want VM to "progress ice dance" they HAVE progressed ice dance. Just look at this single point. They have responded to an item in the ISU's own code of points instructing that twizzles executed in the character of the dance merit GOE.

      VM have taken "character of the dance" and progressed what it means to twizzle in the character of the dance. Three programs show this off to even the untrained eye - Farrucas, Funny Face and Carmen. I use those examples because those are particularly challenging dance "characters" in which to twizzle. But VM always twizzle in the character of the dance. Furthermore, it's done at the highest level of technical quality and with "great speed" and exiting with a (greatly) sustained running edge. They've upped the ante.

      Progressing ice dance, as with all figure skating, doesn't mean anything esoteric. It's specific. Upping the ante of the elements, execution and performance. Synergizing all three if you can so it's seamless. Who has done that more than Virtue Moir - who has done that OTHER THAN Virtue and Moir - and done it in direct response to the ISU's own fucking rules and standards?

      The ISU responds when skaters in other disciplines "progress the sport."

      It's been noted that when Patrick Chan does transitions and linking moves even some educated observers briefly think he's doing his footwork section. He's upped the freaking ante. More to the point, he's SCORED for upping the damn ante.

      The ISU is telling us Davis and White and Virtue and Moir are equal. The chattering class is telling us Davis and White's twizzles are the fucking best, which they are NOT by the ISU's own rules and standards. It is such an insult it's insane. To paraphrase the sarcasm of another fan - the ISU rules are a guide to scoring, it's not - read this and go out and reward the antithesis.

      This year "Giselle" got 77 freaking points at Worlds. Please explain how - and scoring is RELATIVE - and without taking VM's skate into account (they hadn't even skated yet) - explain how Giselle's twizzles, which are the Bollywood, Phantom, waltz, tango, rumba, waltz, ballet and Notre Dame twizzles - are in the character of the freaking effervescent Giselle ballet. Those are ungraceful, unballetic, unaesthetic twizzles when measured against the characteristics of ballet. Bent knees yet. How does a program that is sort of generically adagio acrobatic (read up on that recently so it's my new phrase to apply to Davis White cause it's bang on)and thematically tragic accomodate bombastic twizzles? And the twizzles are Giselle and Notre Dame clones compared to how poorly they fit the 2011 tango.

      And that's just one GOE requirement. There are other aspects of great twizzles where Davis White's can't match Virtue Moir's either.

    2. They are pushing the sport forward, yet the buzz on FSU is VM are complacent and less athletic than DW.

    3. Backwards, just like everything else during the 12-13 season. The team that's been doing the same twizzles for both programs for 5 years and has been retreading the same FD for 5 years are the ones pushing the sport while the team that brings out something new every single year and put out, IMO, the most athletic, complex, and brilliant FD ever this season are labled complacent and less athletiec. The hell.

      There is the V/M fan thread, where there has actually been a fairly decent discussion the past few days talking about what's going on and why V/M's skating is better. Of course, those people are all labled crazy and delusional because they, ahem, refuse to admit that D/W are the better team. I'd like to see the D/W uber fans try to explain why their team is better without having to rely on magical wizard hair.

  2. Off topic, but Moirville in the past has given the impression of being in a pissing match with the blog. And here the blogger is a lone voice (up till now) praising VM's skating and specifically showing where they've been screwed compared to DW. Will Moirville respond with more social-media crap instead of gratitude for this research and praise of VM's skills? Just wondering.

    1. I'm not sure that Moirville or Tessa/Scott have any idea what to do right now. I have some ideas but I doubt they'd take them to heart.

      I'm interested in whether the general public opinion of this blog will change. Prior to the (most excellent) posts regarding the differences between VM and DW, the blogger was labelled as crazy and clearly hated VM otherwise why say such horrible things about them! Except wait, the blogger is a fan of the team? The blogger knows what they're talking about when it comes to the ins and outs of ice dance? Does not compute!

    2. [[I'm interested in whether the general public opinion of this blog will change. Prior to the (most excellent) posts regarding the differences between VM and DW, the blogger was labelled as crazy and clearly hated VM otherwise why say such horrible things about them! Except wait, the blogger is a fan of the team? The blogger knows what they're talking about when it comes to the ins and outs of ice dance? Does not compute!]]

      I've read through all of the blog, and in spite of some hard things being said, all throughout what I see is that this person cares about Tessa and Scott and the skaters of Skate Canada. He/she is upset VM have done things that discredit them, that have made them come across as malicious towards their fans. He/she is upset this great team has such idiotic PR, that their Fed and the ISU have screwed with them. He/she is upset at how SC has not been looking out for the best interests of the skaters.

      I'm seeing someone who wishes VM would get their act together and have PR success and success in competitions. There's no hatred. Anger maybe, but not hatred of VM. All those people throwing fits at whatever the blogger says are just mad this person dares say something that isn't the accepted status quo. They can't have read the blog with any comprehension if they believe this person hates VM.

    3. I dislike idea that the blog exists to get the Moirs to change - like, the blog should be rewarded by the Moirs dropping the sham.

      They can do whatever the hell they like! And I continue to be free to express my opinion about it. It was so incredibly obnoxious and becoming ever more so at the time this blog launched, and one point I was making was that it was my perogative to express my opinion - publicly - about what they were up to every bit as much as it's their perogative to lie their faces off in public. Apparently we were all (fans) meant to play roles someone else assigned us. I never assigned the role of stooge and credulous moron to myself, although admittedly it was easy to reject that assignment since I knew about their actual relationship. I thought they were really making fools of people who were publicly twisting themselves in knots trying to process being jerked around, and were horrible to people who continually chastised themselves or simply felt bad/disappointed for having misread VM - when VM were doing this to them on purpose. It's wrong to make people feel badly on purpose and to find it amusing. Play your lies straight.

      Anyway, the blog has said the above and plenty of other stuff about not just Virtue Moir and Skate Canada, but their families, and if I were in their shoes I don't think "gratitude" is what I'd be feeling even if the responsibility for the situation really did lie with me in the end (meaning the responsibility lies with Moirville et al for going down this road not with the blog for calling it out). If this conversation is useful in any way to the skaters, I think it's just how life is - a whole bunch of angles can be bound up in one situation without it being really possible to separate the good from the bad.

    4. "I dislike idea that the blog exists to get the Moirs to change - like, the blog should be rewarded by the Moirs dropping the sham."

      imo the blog did get Moirville to do something, which is to dig in their heels regarding the sham.

      "a whole bunch of angles can be bound up in one situation without it being really possible to separate the good from the bad."

      This. I would say the Moirs and Virtues are in so deep they've lost sight about what is good or bad. Anything that protects the self-imposed walls around VM is "good" no matter how revolting.

      otoh, I think the ISU knows exactly what they're doing regarding these ice-dance scoring discrepancies. I wonder exactly what their agenda is, screwing with VM these many years. I don't think it's just about wanting to keep a close rivalry between them and DW.

    5. Well, maybe the ISU started screwing with VM first and found a rationale for it later. It can be a super irrational, petty sport. This team seems to have it all - charisma, beauty, limitless talent, the good fortune to seek out, work with and pay for the best, they've won the admiration of some very impressive people around the world. Figure skating can be a tyrannical, despotic sort of sport as controlled by the ISU - I can see VM becoming a target. It's irresistable - it's much more fun to pull their strings than to jerk around some pedestrian albeit successful skater.

      I've read some remarks from judges where my reaction is - holy shit, you're judging? A complete disconnect between what they "know" about skating and how they see and judge an actual performance and their rationale for their scores. And they don't perceive that disconnect. And I've said before I hear crap from commentators that does nothing but perpetuate fallacies - actually I'd say most of them do - or they mash up pertinent observations with irrelevancies or completely erroneous statements and the audience has no idea which is which. Even the best give out incomplete information. I don't think CoP is so hard. You don't have to explain all the points in order to describe what constitutes, for example, the "details" to which Tracy Wilson often alludes. Those details are actualy technical and execution attributes that are specific, readily understood and clearly separate the best from the rest (or the best from their nearest rival). As she says "it comes down to details" it can be understood as "style" or who dotted their i's and crossed their tees - prettiness instead of fundamentals. Those "details" she talks about actually are telling about a skater's fundamentals and whose are better. They're not icing or adornment.

      I've read some comments from people who have been in the sport a long time and yet hold ridiculous double standards about what performance they think deserved what scores and it all depends on their personal feelings or their affiliations.

      I'd say the sport thrives on ignorance and irrationality but "thrives" is not the mot juste.

      I disagree that the blog made the sham give in. The sham wasn't going anywhere. Virtue and Moir had the opportunity to opt out and come clean that even they, those around them believe, intended to use, and then they did a 180. It was their call during the pregnancy to escalate the sham with Jessica, write a book, and run around giving interviews about made-up rifts and dating scenarios and being eternally platonic while Tessa Virtue sat there next to her husband Scott Moir and carried his child.

      I think at times they may have been running out of rationales for the sham - and the blog created a rationale. That's completely circular - the blog reacted to the already overblown and becoming more bloated by the month sham, the sham reacted by pointing to the blog as a reason to sham, or so I suspect. It's not the reason. They don't really have a good one that justifies how they've gone about it. But I promise - guaranteed - if the blog had never existed the sham would be steamerolling along, only the facebooks would be open and we'd be getting a whole lot more of it.

  3. "I'm not sure that Moirville or Tessa/Scott have any idea what to do right now. I have some ideas but I doubt they'd take them to heart."

    Eh - they haven't been interested in competent, professional management. I can't see them interested in fans' opinions about what to do, even if a fan happens to be a media professional (of course I have no idea if that description fits you, I'm just going by what we've seen so far of VM's handling of PR).

    I'm loving all these discussions of the specifics of the skating of VM and DW. Is the ISU accountable to anyone? It looks like they've gotten away with ignoring their own criteria for ice-dance judging, and/or they made things up as they went along, in order to favor one team and not allow the better team to get the scores they deserve. How did this happen?

    1. Who knows. Maybe the fucking over V/M got at worlds will serve as a wake-up call to Moirville. For sake of discussion though, I'd like to hear any ideas anyone has.

      The only thing I can think of in terms of accountability for the ISU is that after the 2002 ordeal, the IOC told the ISU to clean up ice dancing or it was out of the games. Which, of course, ironically has led to the biggest screwing over of a team in the history of ice dance. I don't know if there's anything there or not.

    2. I don't know if these people know how to see. It's one thing to decide an element or quality must have 'these' characteristics and another to have faith that the judges recognize these characteristics when they see them - or don't see them - and to have faith that the judges share some kind of consistent definition.

      "Character of the dance" for example, could be a very broad concept. Let's take the free dance. Davis White have done three programs that are pretty much the same program - not just elements but the whole nut. Samson and Delilah, Phantom of the Opera, Notre Dame. What kind of dance would you say they were doing in those programs? Eh - here's where "adagio acrobatics" sort of fits - a little lyrical ish, a little theatrical acrobaty. The music is histrionic. So why not the same twizzle pass - throw it in all three programs.

      Die Fleudermaus was a waltz, the tango was a tango. Much more specific. Very specific dances, in fact. So we're going to reward the "adagio" twizzles when they're done for the waltz and tango the same way and same style they're done for the "I don't know what it is but it's entertaining!" dances? Remember, this is not about fulfilling a requirement (which is necessary to avoid a deduction). It doesn't appear that 'character of the dance' twizzles are a requirement. If yours aren't really reflecting the character of the dance (and seriously - DW twizzles reflected the waltz? The tango too?)you won't get a deduction. But if you do, you'll get a GOE point. Which brings us back to


      It becomes more egregious with pattern dances. There's no "interpretive dance!" "Wild spirits!" "Passion!" hoo ha there. It's very specific. A whole section on key points in footwork. There's a whole lot of information out there about the characteristics of these pattern dances. You can't mess with them much. People claimed Davis White were smart not to bash the Yankee Polka like Tessa and Scott did but actions can speak louder than words and how much of the character of either a polka OR a ballet with a similar tenor and energy did those hard-working Davis White twizzles reflect? While also managing to earn a GOE the previous year for a rumba? These are some magic twizzles.

      Virtue and Moir have taken it upon themselves to do actual identifiable dances in almost all of their free dances - maybe Mahler was the only adagio effort. And they take it upon themselves to twizzle in the character of short dance and differently in the free so as to be in the character of their free. This is how you progress the sport. You raise the bar. The ISU has adjusted the scoring when the bar has been raised in the past. They scored VM this year as if they'd lowered it. Figure skating corruption at its classic worst.

    3. But the 2002 'ordeal" was a pairs 'controversy' that was instigated by Scott Hamilton screaming and shrieking in the commentator booth and Sandra Bezic next to him acting like somebody had just kidnapped her baby.

      It wasn't an ice dance controversy. Ice dance had a pair of extremely popular winners in Anassina and Pezerat.

      Okay, so Tom Hammond was really objecting to the Martin Luther King voiceover in their program, but that's because the guy can't help thinking of figure skating as sort of trivial at the end of the day, and if an MLK recording is incorporated into a program to him it's trivializing MLK. Which misread A&P's intentions - they were dead serious and intended nothing but utter respect. It wasn't my idea of a thrilling program concept and I'm sure a few others were a little bit 'oh boy' - but A&P were so freaking popular with the public everybody really didn't care as much as they cared that they won.

  4. I get that the contrived controversy was over the pairs results and that A/P were very popular winners, but in the middle of everything, the IOC told the ISU that ice dance needed cleaning up or it was out of the Olympics. Remember, part of all of this was the allegation that the French had traded votes with Russia to help A/P out in the ice dance competition. That's where the "clean up ice dance" or else came from.

  5. These discussions have made me appreciate VM's superb skating even more, if that were possible. They are so freaking amazing, I think they even surpass T/D.

    What is downright incomprehensible is Skate Canada assigning G/P scores that say Piper is in the same category as Tessa Virtue. What the hell? There is some extreme corruption going on at Skate Canada. I actually hope VM can manage to distance themselves and that other qualified media sources pick up the fight for VM. SC is not trustworthy.

  6. The comparisons you make are spot on. Maybe next you can explore the amount of time that DW spend in side by side and basic hand holding positions compared to how VM weave in and out of every possible hold in every possible position. I just watched DW FD and was just amazed at the space between them. If they have such a "connection" why is it as though they are afraid they will get each others cooties from spending too much time near each other. As my former instructor would say - you could drive a truck between them.

    1. I hope to. It's really ridiculous how open they are. Open is an advantage because the whole thing with interdependency is its risk. BOTH skaters have to be completely in control because if one stumbles the other is also destablized.

      Except if you're Scott Moir, whom have I have to is a freaking genius of Tessa Virtue management. Scott seems to be able to balance his core no matter how the rest of him is organized. Tessa starts to slip and Scott gets her before she seems to realize herself she's started to slip. He has incredible presence of mind out there and the skill to take the adjustment.

      This ability they share doesn't mean the interdependence is less objectively risky - it just means they're very very good.

      Almost everything Davis White do involves them keeping out of each other's way lest their feet get tangled or they knock into each other.

      They actually have quite a bit in common with Gilles Poirier. Difference being, their individual skating skills are of course much stronger, so they don't look as rough. But they get around issues in much the same way - just do it better.

      I would like to go through everything by the time this discussion is done, even if the conversation stops and starts. The spins, the footwork, the lifts, and the general openness of their skating compared to VM.

      I'm beginning to believe that Virtue and Moir's technical superiority is such a slam dunk they can only be held down on pcs, where the scores for VM versus DW continually contradict what is in the ISU's own directives.

    2. And p.s. - I keep reading a whole lot of crap on twitter about figure skating.

      I would like someone to ask PJ Kwong, Lynn Rutherford and high profile sports writers who whinge on about Worlds if they're current with CoP on the discipline they're whining about. And if they're bitching about a result, are they bitching about the rules that allow the result - i.e., CoP - or are they claiming the judging was shady? When that reporter referenced VM's glitches in 2012 and extolled DW's frantic acrobatic hustle and bustle in Die Fliedermaus, does that reporter know one fucking thing about the rules of ice dance and what elements look like and what quality skating looks like and what is harder and what's easier?

      Does Kurt Browning keep up with CoP every year? When GP were skating he praised Poirier even though Poirier wiped out at the end of the twizzles, because he said you're supposed to "look like you're pushing everything to the max." For real Kurt? What page is that on?

      I'll tell you what I find ironic - that Virtue and Moir are being hung out to dry, cut up, railroaded, manipulated and jerked around as far as the "message" that's out there about DW and as far as they've been scored because the exact same techniques they've applied on social media and in their public relations are the techniques being used against them to fuck them over when they compete against DW. These are not subtle techniques. They're just very very shameless and aggressive.

    3. "Except if you're Scott Moir, whom have I have to is a freaking genius of Tessa Virtue management. Scott seems to be able to balance his core no matter how the rest of him is organized. Tessa starts to slip and Scott gets her before she seems to realize herself she's started to slip. He has incredible presence of mind out there and the skill to take the adjustment."

      I totally agree. I think Scott is almost freakish in this sense, except I don't mean that as an insult. I mean it in the best possible way. He does seem literally able to know that Tessa is going to have a slip or something before she even does (as though it's some second sense with him). Some of my favorite Scott Moir moments on ice have actually been when something has gone wrong out there for he and Tessa. Not that I want to see them make mistakes, but when they do he always impresses with his ability to stay poised under pressure.

      So many skaters tend to go into autopilot mode or overcompensate after a mistake. Even Tessa, as amazing as she is, has seemed prone to that sort of thing a few times in the past. But not Scott. He'll stay totally balanced and then instantly adjust and recenter them both. You never see him process anything because it's happening so quickly. He'll stop her stumble, reset her, and then they'll be off again in like, two seconds.

      He showcased that ability during the OD at Skate Canada in 2009. He did it twice there, actually. He also did it at last season's Canadian Nationals when he yelled "time!" in the split second after Tessa had her slip during the twizzles. And of course, she'll give herself up to it with no hesitation.

      I know there have been other times I've noticed things like that but those are two of the ones that stand out at the moment.

    4. "Does Kurt Browning keep up with CoP every year? When GP were skating he praised Poirier even though Poirier wiped out at the end of the twizzles, because he said you're supposed to "look like you're pushing everything to the max." For real Kurt? What page is that on?"

      This new meme has been something that's bugging the crap out of me. I forgot what event it was at, but sometime I think last season, Tanith, while commenting on D/W, made a remark about how it was good to make things look hard.

      HELLO? For years, everyone has yammered on about how important it is to make the difficult look easy. Skaters who do this were praised for making the difficult look easy. Now, with D/W around, the important thing is to make it look like what you're doing is hard? Bullshit.

    5. I will third irritates me to no end when sports fans cannot understand that CONTROLLED refined movements are actually harder athletic accomplishments than appearing pushing everything to the max. Perfect example - track and field athletes. The best in the world - yes have explosive power but they make it seem natural because their TECHNIQUE is perfect dammit. It's when the TECHNICAL is not perfect - these athletes have to work harder and cheat. When do you actually give your best performance in terms of world records? When it becomes second nature and you are NOT FIGHTING your body and there is FLUIDITY...sorry but my exercise physiology and biomechanics background is coming out LOL...Sorry for the you Usain Bolt making it look hard...Michael Phelps being frantic in the all of a sudden instead of figure skating being about actual figure skating (in memoriam of what Barbara Ann Scott cherished) - we should it make it make more about making the events look like the X-Games....good for you Kurt...

    6. It's common sense. I used to have a coffee table book on figure skating that had a lot on 1994. Some comment went "The hardest thing is to keep an arm still". It's self-evident. The remark was made about the pairs competition in 1994. Which is harder - riding and holding a long, deep, silent edge with beautiful posture, in unison not just of line but of rhythm with your partner, and keeping the upper body beautifully still or at least your movements beautifully controlled - or pumping along working hard and flailing? The still, quite fluid looking skating is by far the more difficult and it's better quality skating. You can't do it without superb skating skills - that edge has to be deep and secure. Look at Michelle Kwan - she's flowing like water out there.

      Tanith is full of it. But if she'd elaborated on her point maybe she means it's something the judges fall for. However, it's so basic that any judge who fell for it would be obviously unqualified.

    7. This means we need to look at the pcs in CoP and see where "evident effort" must be rewarded.

    8. OC - I totally agree - if you are a fan of Michelle Kwan's skating then how the hell are you not a fan of V/M? Again it appears to me that the hardcore US fans want to cheer any American at any cost that has a chance at a medal at Sochi and that D/W are the only legitimate again for me it's become not that you are HUGE D/W fans and are breaking down why Notre-Dame or Giselle is so great are tearing down V/M in order to elevate D/W...huge will be interesting to see what D/W skate next year...

    9. What's been happening in the media over the last 6-8 months has been negative campaign ads against V-M...well it's election year next year with the Olympics..I would imagine that the USFSA's negative campaigning will some point if your team D/W don't come out with significantly different lifts, twizzles etc this year - I think there is a possibility that even some of the other federations including Japan will start saying wtf? So whoever was going through Obama-Romney withdrawal will get their political fix next season...

    10. This was something that anyone who has ever taken their dance compulsory exams is aware of. Some of the things good coaches emphasize is stillness/control and posture of the upper body while executing the desired foot sequence. This shows mastery of the edges and positions if you do not have to compensate with your upper body.

      This is I guess brings up the point that the compulsories need to be brought back.

      I wish skating broadcasts had a feature like they do in tennis and other sports where they track the total distance covered by the athlete during a point/period of time by tracking movements against the fixed surface (also what compulsories allow us to visualize). This would highlight how much ground VM cover during the course of their performance and would put a dagger through the argument that DW are so much faster.

  7. I'm rewatching a few things from the 12-13 season. One set of videos I have, but had never managed to watch before,is fancam video from the GPF. The whole thing is jaw dropping when you compare V/M to D/W, but the twizzles, oh my stars...



    And just for fun since I have the video as well, P/B:


    all season i've been thinking she's looked like she somehow lost weight, woman was tiny enough, LOOK AT HER ARMS...JESUS... her BMI must be below 18.5, she just doesnt look healthy at all.

    1. She is scary thin. I started to notice that after 2010 Worlds when she lost weight.

    2. I don't understand why more people aren't concerned about her weight. And yet, there are still people jumping all over Tessa for being fat. In case anyone failed to notice, Tessa was looking extremely thin at Worlds, to the point where it was almost scary.

      Anyone who has seen Tessa in person knows that she's tiny. Her body has changed in recent years (no, not because she "grew up", it's because she had a baby) so I guess maybe there's where some of it is coming from?

    3. Tessa has added muscle everywhere.

      Look at her from Mahler. She's more proportionate than Meryl Davis, and she doesn't have that lollipop look, but you can count her vertibrae and her elbows jut out, her shoulder blades just out, and her shoulders jut out. Her face is very thin.

      What's changed about her body is the amount of muscle she's added. But, as Maria Mountain has noted, the goal is to give Tessa the muscle she needs to execute and not any more, so as to preserve the aesthetic. That's what she't got now.

      Furthermore, one of the misconceptions the gymnastics/figure skating blogger promotes is that lifting in figure skating is like weight lifting. It's nothing like weight lifting. It's extremely important for the woman to carry her own weight in a lift and to manage her body with control. Partners have said their partner is "light as a feather" if they're able to carry themselves. Look at that old video of Torvill Dean where Dean is whining throughout the entire practice, including bitching "Carry yourself!" as he's about to lift Torvill. Weight gain can be an issue with a female partner for two reasons - one, it can throw off her center of gravity and her sense of balance. Two, depending on the weight gain, it can mean that she's not in such great shape anymore and lacks the conditioning to carry herself properly. Conversely, if a woman is too skinny but not in shape, she'll also lack the strength to carry herself. Tanith claims this was the case before she went to Linichuk. As thin as she was it was as if Ben were carrying a wobbly sack of potatoes, she says, and when she was in better condition it was a whole lot easier on Ben.

      Another good example is Kirsten Moore Towers. I'm a big fan - I thought she and Dylan were great from the first. However, this year, it's so obvious that in the lifts she's both lighter and stronger. Entrances and exits are swifter and smoother. She's hit a completely different level of conditioning.

      Tatania Volosozhar isn't the teensy weensiest pairs girl out there (though all pairs girls are pretty small) but it's obviously incredibly easy for her partner to execute lifts and maneuver her in space.

      With Meryl, I do believe she's far too thin. She's created an artificial body type - the tell is when your joints - and your head - are the biggest parts of your body. But why? She's already fairly petite. Does she need to be as light as possible because Charlie actually manages better - so the lifts can look less labored and lighter - something's that being achieved more with weight loss and Meryl's own physical fitness than with strong technique? There's still a lot of sack of potatoes or moving a plank around stuff going on there.

    4. "What's changed about her body is the amount of muscle she's added. But, as Maria Mountain has noted, the goal is to give Tessa the muscle she needs to execute and not any more, so as to preserve the aesthetic. That's what she't got now."

      Tessa's hips are wider and her rib cage has expanded, but those are just skeletal changes from carrying a baby and giving birth. The big change though is, yes, definitely the amount of muscle Tessa has now. She's strong, she's fit, and she's lean.

      "With Meryl, I do believe she's far too thin. She's created an artificial body type - the tell is when your joints - and your head - are the biggest parts of your body. But why? She's already fairly petite. Does she need to be as light as possible because Charlie actually manages better - so the lifts can look less labored and lighter - something's that being achieved more with weight loss and Meryl's own physical fitness than with strong technique? There's still a lot of sack of potatoes or moving a plank around stuff going on there."

      ITA about Meryl being too thin. I've seen the D/W fans and others call her ethreal and delicate because of it (and what the hell does that have to do with anything?), but it's really no advantage for reasons already explained. Dollars to doughnuts, I'd bet that Tessa is FAR easier to lift in practice than Meryl is. Tessa is fit. She can carry herself, and she has that incredible awareness of her position in space and control over her body.

      One of the many things that bugged me this season was all of the talk that V/M were struggling with their lifts and they looked labored. Really? Sure, the lift at SC was botched--in their first outing of the season, mind you--but when it comes to V/M's lifts this year, I certainly haven't seen a team that's struggling or looking labored. Meanwhile, I have thought D/W have looked quite labored at times.

      Another thing: since when is it a requirement to come out in your first event of the season and have everything perfect? It feels like if a team comes out still needed to work on things, the struggling label gets slapped on for the entire season.

  9. For years now, Tessa and Scott have been unfairly targeted, but this season it seems like it reached levels of never-before-seen egregiousness. Normally their combination of talent and ability to adapt on the fly has allowed them to absorb or overcome most of the body blows they've taken, but this year it was like they were being checked all over the ice. So much so in fact, one wonders why they didn't decide to don hockey skates and pads before they came out for their final two skates at Worlds.

    This season, they had to dodge obstacles thrown at them from all sides. First, there was the full court press in the media declaring Meryl and Charlie had improved on or eliminated all of their weaknesses (they were declared the best team in the world before the season had even started, despite not coming in as world champions) while Tessa and Scott had somehow begun to stagnate.

    Secondly, there seemed to be some kind of additional campaign developed as a means to discredit the Carmen FD as "sexually explicit." Carmen, of course, was not sexually explicit at all. And anyone with an understanding of the type of modern dance movement they used in their program could see that nothing Tessa and scott were doing was obscene in any way, but that was the message they were up against from almost day one. Because the majority of the people in the figure skating media seem unable to grasp what the skaters are actually doing out there from a technical standpoint in particular, they prefer to fall back on generalized and aesthetic observations. But the reaction seemed to go beyond the typical "I don't really know much about the skating so I'll talk about how steamy this is!" kind of stuff I generally expected from some in the media (like DiManno). Something about it felt more contrived. Twitter and social media was utilized as one of the biggest facilitators of the "it's explicit!" message, and it was spread by "professionals" in the media and non-affiliated individuals alike.

    The people at Skate Canada handled it badly (predictably), choosing not to hit back much at all - in a, "pshh, the skating will stand on its own" kind of way, or to fold the tired, overused, asinine "people still think the way we are on the ice is how we are off of it!" message into the spin cycle. But I think my favorite response to the criticism (and one that best exemplifies how much Skate Canada and its media pals missed the boat on this) was PJ Kwong's "she's not wearing a thong, for heaven's sake. It's not like there's a stripper pole out there!" comment. Well you're right about that. What a FABULOUS defense of the program, PJ! No need to break down *why* the program is brilliant, innovative, and difficult as all get out, or explain why people saying things like "OMG, Tessa is groping herself out there!" are uninformed and ridiculous. Nah, just explain Tessa and Scott want to push the boundaries, but don't say *how,* exactly, other than that Tessa and Scott somehow remind you of aged cheese, which is...I can't even. Anyway, problem solved! We heard some from Marina, but there's only so far any coach can go in speaking out for his/her skaters or teams. Nothing ever came from Slipchuk. Besides those two articles on Jennifer Swan by the writer, there was nothing ever put out there that really explained what Tessa and Scott were attempting to do with Carmen.

    1. ^^ Oops, ran out of room before ^^

      A third obstacle was related to the actual skating on the ice. This was likely the biggest obstacle, or so I'm guessing. Carmen was the most innovative, technically difficult "we're not only outside the kind of choreographic box the ISU would prefer us to stay in, we've smashed it to bits and lit the shards on fire" program Tessa and Scott have ever done. And it seems the ISU went "oh, no, no, no. This is beyond what we're comfortable with even *you* doing, and we generally let you stretch our boundaries a little bit every season." And besides, there's that rivalry to think about.

      All that being said, Tessa and Scott looked great going into the FD at Four Continents. But once the stop/restart happened it was like the USFSA and their pals in the media descended en masse and that was the last straw. And now it's being targeted for removal even though it's a rule that's been in place (in some shape or form) for ages. Because, sure. It was never really a problem before but CLEARLY it is now!

      So, what's really going on here? What's happening on the ice is definitely not being reflected in the scores. Meryl and Charlie are being given additional GOE points each season for the same elements despite not meeting the criteria for those additional points in the first place. Every year, Tessa and Scott correctly execute new elements that meet that criteria, and they're punished. Tessa and Scott's skating is everything CoP was designed to reward. And yet they're kicked around every season.

      I think Scott has a tendency to run off at the mouth sometimes, but I also believe he's usually correct in his assessments of the situations in which he and Tessa often find themselves. That isn't to say he should always make those kinds of comments when he does, but I sometimes feel like a lot of people have the tendency to focus on his delivery (which is very direct or sarcastic) or the timing of his comments and not pay enough attention to what he's actually arguing. To me, there are many times when I feel like, insofar as skating knowledge and understanding of the limitations (and ridiculousness) of the system is concerned, Scott is the smartest person in the room. Or at least, he's one of them.

    2. I wonder how ISU wants to recruit younger fans by always staying with the old and traditional interpretations. A bit of steam and it's declared too explicit? You got to be kidding me.

    3. Scott being the smartest person in the room - ABOUT SKATING - could be a problem. Not only are the skaters meant to stay in their little performance boxes, I think they're meant to be little eager to please arrested development cases. Scott speaks up. He knows what he's talking about. From a strategic standpoint, from a basic consideration standpoint, there are times that I believe he should shut up. I mentioned one of these occasions as being WTT 2012 when he complained on camera. IMO that complaint was really insensitive to his teammates who appreciated being there, not least because they could use the money.

      There are times Scott gets on a roll and he starts crossing the line from stuff where he knows what he's talking about to stuff where he totally missed the point. An example of the latter is when at his post Olympic Q&A he was asked about Own the Podium. The reporter was asking about the "Win or you're a tourist" and other obnoxious messaging that had been criticized. Scott took the question as challenging Own the Podium's financial contributions to the skaters, and he made a little speech about how without the OTP monies his parents would have lost their house. Scott. I know you're in figure skating and so in your sport you may often feel as if you're among fools. But that reporter wasn't a moron. The reporter wasn't wondering if the OP money was really necessary. Try LISTENING and not assuming the other person doesn't get it.

      I think the Carmen is explicit memo was a lot of manipulation. Nobody thought it was too steamy. It was just a way to bash. Look at Volosozhar and Trankov's Godfather short. Groping all over the ice. Nobody cared. Nobody's out to get them. :)

      That doesn't mean Scott's not RIGHT - even with something like WTT. WTT is an idiotic competition. That doesn't mean he's not right that the freaking Yankee Polka and the Finnstep aren't the strongest choices for this and next year's sd pattern, although I have a fondness for the Finnstep because Tessa Virtue rocks the ever living shit out of that dance.

      Some of this makes me think of Torvill Dean - not Torvill Dean 1984 but TD 1994. Dean is not my favorite choreographer by some miles but every time I look at his skating it's as pure as it gets. Dean wasn't just smart about skating, he knew he was smart. He was smarter than the sport's infrastructure too. In some ways I feel 1994 was meant to put him in his place and knock him down because he wasn't sufficiently deferential.

    4. "That doesn't mean he's not right that the freaking Yankee Polka and the Finnstep aren't the strongest choices for this and next year's sd pattern, although I have a fondness for the Finnstep because Tessa Virtue rocks the ever living shit out of that dance."

      OMG, can she ever. She freaking KILLS IT.

    5. Not only does Tessa absolutely kill it, she and Scott are FABULOUS quicksteppers. I'm certainly looking forward to seeing what they come up with for their SD. Like, geeked out excited looking forward.

    6. For me it's as if the ISU has beaten the crap out of them and then complains that they're limping for some reason.

  10. For me it will be very interesting to see what the rest of the Canadian WTT team looks like. We know that W/P are going instead of V/M - which I think is wise. If Duhamel/Radford or Patrick Chan don't go - I call bullshit if they use the excuse that they have SOI to do and that they have next year's programs to get ready. So last year - Scott gets grilled for a comment that was unfortunately was caught on mic but this year - D/W are not going instead Chock/Bates are going...let's see who shows up....
    Basically what I am saying is that it's okay for this year for people to be passing the WTT event...

  11. Me again at 8:22 am - With regards to this year - Scott's demeanor has been very professional in interviews and indicating that they need to keep working on their programs. One quote I remember from Scott back after the Olympics is that if that V/M continued and skated in Sochi that it wouldn't shock him if they ended up in fourth place...meaning that other teams would improve etc. So I don't think that Scott is naive...but I actually do think that his open eyes were opened wide with the judging at Canadians this year with G/Ps marks..fool me once fine...fool me twice..not cool within your own federation...I also think that with Swan in the picture next year as well - I think Scott will continue to be professional..cuz she seems like a great sounding board...

    1. What was done at Canadians was unforgiveable. If you want to pick over Virtue and Moir, have at it, but in the same competition you damn well better not pretend anything Gilles/Poirier do on the ice is within 20 points of them or it's going to raise a flag.

      It makes you wonder if Skate Canada did ALL of its politicking for Gilles Poirier and threw Virtue Moir under the bus. If Skate Canada signaled to the ISU (and its Canadian judges followed suit ) here - we're going to give Virtue Moir disrespectful and underrated scores at two Canadians - giving the ISU cover for themselves underscoring VM - hell, their own Fed thinks they need to improve a bunch before they're on DW's level - and in return we'd appreciate it if you'd join us in pumping up Piper and Paul.

      It worked out at the 4CCs but then somebody must have betrayed the agreement at Worlds. Only partially kidding but there's hinkiness with the Canadian scoring following that pattern two seasons running.

      Not to mention - I've been looking over the skating message boards and something caught my eye - a post from somebody who seemed well versed in the ways a Federation's skaters could receive international assignments. There's more than one way to skin a cat. One would think the goal would be to get your talented teams as many opportunities as possible. As a returning split couple team, Gilles & Poirier received the options Crone & Poirier had earned - that rule has boosted a lot of new couples in the past few years. But Skate Canada went further and spent most of its assignment options on Gilles Poirier while leaving such as Paul/Islam out to dry. It's been noticed that is the ONLY team they're interested in pushing. It can't just be Debbi unless Debbi's reach extends to influencing assignments and working the options available - and who knows. The outcome is that other skaters got ignored by Skate Canada. Usually the response is "They're a new team - give them a chance" fuck yeah, they're a new team give them a chance. It doesn't mean let them have it both ways - the allowances of a new team but the scores of Olympic champions.

    2. Oh OC I agree - with G/P it's beyond ridiculous - they even get to skate in galas including worlds this year over teams that placed higher than's beyond nasty....and arrogance...ideally at this point since Paul/Islam have a very slight possibility to getting to the Olympics next year - I will hope that Orford/Williams squeek onto the Olympic team and deny G/P cuz that would be some form of justice...and hell wouldn't you want the coaching Lowe's coaching team to be there instead of Scarborough supporting both V/M and W/P. Now that would make an excellent team photograph, Orford/Williams with the Lowes (former Zoueva student), Weaver/Poje with Krylova, Carmenlengo, Bourne and then V/M with Zoueva and perhaps Swan. Now I could say yes to that picture...

    3. I've been following this sport for several decades and ice-dance is the most corrupt discipline and the one to accept changes the slowest. It doesn't surprise me in the least to think SC has been exchanging favors for G/P while throwing V/M under the bus. SC Directors are all products of the older, corrupt practices. They wouldn't know how to do things differently. What I wish to understand is why G/P. And why were V/M considered expendable. VM have been able to maintain in the top two places of the world thanks to their own talent and sublime skating skills. No thanks at all to their federation nor their asinine personal PR practices.

    4. Not to mention it's beyond obvious Skate Canada is doing at least small deals with other Federations on Gilles & Poiriers behalf - Exhibit 1: TEB. Hubbell & Donohue don't skate, Gilles & Poirier who finished lower, DO skate "Due to the reception our programs received." Yes, and they packed two sets of costumes in pure starry anticipation and hope, not because they knew they'd skate in the gala no matter how they did, because it was all set.

      It's a bit OT but the "personality" memo we're getting clubbed with about Gilles & Poirier is purely 2 dimensional. It's incessent self-promotion on social media and it's mugging for photos. I haven't seen much material showing Gilles & Poirier off ice prior to this awesome partnership, but there's a Piper Gilles interview on youtube from a few years back, circa her partnership with Zach Donohue, and she barely seems awake. Her entire demeanor is in slow motion and slow blink. The personality memo as contrived as everything else about them. It's also a bit insulting to some figure skaters who have natural fun personalities, but these figure skaters don't seem to want to handcuff themselves to the SC personnel, and that is a requirement.

    5. I think VM are expendable because they no longer serve the self-interest of key members of Skate Canada's personnel. This regime has always been about personal advancement and self-aggrandizement for personnel - it's never been about the health of the organization or doing what's best for the skaters - clearly.

      Virtue Moir were stars. The Skate Canada personnel are star fuckers. Why do administrative people work relentlessly to promote or associate themselves with stars except that they want enjoy the reflected spotlight, enjoy the perks that come from being the gatekeeper, take the credit for the enhanced revenue and interest the stars bring to sport both in terms of tickets sold, television ratings scored and sponsors acquired, and basically Virtue Moir are the platform and Debbi & Company are the ones being promoted. You purchase this platform for youself not only by occupying a supposed "key" role in the organization but also by doing favors for the stars. I'll stage manage the sham at competitions and you let me paste myself to your parents and to you so everyone can see how important a part I am of your success.

      Well the plug seems to have been pulled on all of this last year. So why should Skate Canada support and promote Virtue Moir anymore when there's no quid pro quo? The people most concerned aren't interested in figure skating or the skaters, they're interested in themselves. Gilles and Poirier are publicity whores - Skate Canada promotes them and Gilles and Poirier are delighted to share the spotlight.

    6. Perhaps the Gilles' family are offering some beautiful vacation packages in Colorado...throw in a sundance festival...skiing...aspen...?..I mean seriously why would Poirier not skate with Emily Samuelson and would rather Gilles? Don't tell me that it was just a skating - personality decision...Gilles is from Colorado...Torvill Dean is out there in was a $$$ decision and the Gilles were more than happy to oblige...

    7. To be fair, there were citizenship and federation release issues with a Samuelson pairing. That said, I wouldn't be surprised to learn that the Gilles family is offering up some nice perks.

    8. I wouldn't be surprised either.

    9. I think it's typical of this sport to invent a problem to explain why figure skating has lost popularity (it's too gay, it's not a sport and people think it's not a sport cause they think it's not hard) and then address the made up problem.

      People think it's not sport because they're led to believe there's no correlation between how someone skates and how they're scored. The people who comment reinforce this with their vague allusions to "like better" "enjoy more" and "prefer". Gymnastics doesn't do this. Gymnastics has a complex scoring system and the previous scoring system has failed, and there's been some corruption there but the commentators themselves aren't pretending the ultra subjective "preferences" is legitimate.

      Then there's the incredible amount of politics and manipulation that takes place when various interests try to EXPLOIT the public's perception of corruption in order to manipulate the public into false conclusions about the merits of a competition's outcome or the comparative merits of different skaters. I.e., in my view, the real corruption in 2002 were the interests that intended Sale & Pelletier to win that competition, just as they'd been handed worlds on a platter. The spanner in the works was that the program Sale & Pelletier had created for the Olympics was a program they couldn't pull off (Orchid), so they returned to Love Story, an extremely open program with very little executed in any type of hold. Meantime B&S's coach Tamara Moskvina had created such intricate, content packed choreography for both B&S's short and long it made it difficult for S&P to position themselves as the stronger team. Anton's slight stumble in the 2 axel was the opening needed to cry corruption and they railroaded that idea through. My eyes still roll clear into the back of my head that they were able to produce an apparently unstable person who was able to conveniently "confess".

      The tactics are very primitive - it's no more than the thief pointing at an innocent bystander and accusing the innocent bystander. I'm not saying that's the literal, calculated reality here or then, but it's definitely the dynamic. The ones who thought S&P were a done deal had a reason to believe that or they wouldn't have had a meltdown over the actual outcome.

      Here, there is a ton of shadiness afoot with the railroading of DW as the best ice dancers in the world, and a component of that manipulation is to pump into the atmosphere the idea that VM are attempting to manipulate competitions because they can't beat DW on the merits. As noted in this conversation, commentators like Kurt and like Tanith are even pretending that making something look harder than it is is PREFERRED.

      Worlds in London was also somehow used as an example of how DW could be robbed, the 4CCs was ludicrously used to repeat the argument that VM invented their issue in the lp to avoid outright defeat.

      It's ugly, it's exploitative. The corruption in the sport breeds the impression of corruption in the sport, and then that impression is manipulated to get away with more corruption. But it's always using the same tactics. Flip the script. Turn it around. It's not a sophisticated tactic - it's just very very very aggressive. But that's really all they're doing - it's guilty people pointing the finger at their victims.

    10. Yeah - it's not about Poirier choosing someone with potentially less citizenship roadblocks. Teams from separate countries are formed all the time, it's not a big deal. It's Skate Canada's immediate, egregious crawling up their ass and OTT gushing promotion. And in the process they dump their Olympic champions and the best thing to happen for ice-dance in this generation. Way to go Skate Canada.

      Of course SC is getting some compensation. You can smell the corruption from space.

  12. you should send this complaint to the isu

  13. or at least post a complaint on the isu's facebook

    1. They don't care. They are a huge part of the problem here. These results are exactly what they wanted. It's sad. I don't think anyone knows what to do to deal with this. People claim that IJS is the problem but I disagree. If IJS is applied properly, it seems to work (in my opinion, of course) but in the case of V/M v. D/W the IJS is being ignored by the Judges.