Sunday, July 31, 2016

This post is the written equivalent of drumming your fingers, killing time til training camp/actual news leaks. There's still awhile to go.


Marai Nagasu - I'm hopeful (just read this article below, published in mid-July). More of a David Wilson fan than ever:

Lori Nichols was just the worst for Nagasu. Generic. Whatever has prevented Nagasu's previous training arrangements from sticking, I hope this is the right fit, and I believe Wilson develops choreography as the best do it - organically. But you have to have big talent to do it that way. Not one or two recycled ideas (like Dean and Nichols).

"I loved the whole process," Nagasu continued. "I love how the program feels very natural. I wouldn't say it's easy to skate to, but I don't feel like I'm forcing myself into any of the jumps. I'm sure I'll feel different when I'm training the jumps; I'm sure I'll fall."

I can't think of many other contemporary high level choreographers, other than Marina Zoueva, who create programs that not only feel natural to the skater, but naturally evolve in expression and technique as the season goes on.* I'm a little afraid of Nagasu's LP music being too on the nose/cheesy (The Winner Takes It All), but it could be politically effective, and stop the judges from scoring her with Nagasu rules (You're yesterday. Here's three UR. Get out.)

Mirai's situation has pissed me off because while I recognize she has at times been her own worst enemy, let nerves get to her, and had unstable training situations, blah blah blah blah, that's no different than Gracie Gold, and as much talent as Gold has, I think Mirai has more. The USFSA has tried to drive her out while skater-whispering, babysitting and hand-holding other head cases.

P.S. I'm kind of curious if Wilson emphasizing that Mirai is an adult is an attempt to reinforce her independence from her mom.


Papadakis/Cizeron fans are fighting it out with Virtue Moir fans on FSuniverse. So that shows how far the game has descended. Papadakis/Cizeron are a thirteenth place team artificially elevated to the championship level - there is no basis for this discussion.


Bryce Davison's wedding is scheduled for June 2017?!! What is that - a two and a half year engagement?

It's been said when you live southern California you have to be careful. You can sit down facing the ocean when you're 24, when you get up what feels like a week later, you're 86. I guess it means the atmosphere is a time sink. I feel like Jessica Dube's cruise ship life might be heading the same way:

I can see it.

P.S. Virtue and Moir are also buddying it up with Papadakis Cizeron on social media. It feels to me as if this is shaping up as VM v. Davis White redux, only, it is to be hoped, the agreement is that Virtue Moir pretend Papadakis Cizeron are first rate skaters and it's a challenge to beat them ---- as long as Virtue and Moir DO beat them. If they went into this not knowing whether or not they'd have to take second to a team that covers six whole inches of ice in every program when they're not wobbling, I have no words. Virtue and Moir already did two Olympic cycles as a legitimate team sacrificed to validate a fake team; I don't know why they'd sign up for a third round.

*Davis White aren't skaters.


  1. The Lake Placid ice dance competition just wrapped up and Minto is going on now.

    This thing from Smart and Diaz was gifted 62.32 points in Lake Placid. There must be some sort of unpublished set of additional code of points criteria that awards hefty bonuses for being sham significant others to high-ranking North Americans. It's getting praise from FSU-types for personality and other non-skating bs and the choreography itself was plagiarized.

    Gilles and Poirier skated their SD at Minto and the program got 76.94.

    1. 1:53, I thought you might enjoy this breakdown of the plagiarism. :)


    2. I did! Thanks.

      I agree that it will be absurd if Bourne and Browning aren't given choreography credit when Smart and Diaz's ISU bio is updated for this season. I am not inclined to think that Bourne and Browning gave permission or were involved in the program. I think DL, SD, and the Spanish skating federation would have all been crowing about working with them if it had happened. There seems to be a strong push for this team, and I think the chance for publicity would have been seized upon. Speaking of which, why the push for this team and radio silence for Hurtado and Khavalin? It is true that SD were paired early, but Hurtado was by far the stronger skater in the Hr/Dz pairing, and Khavalin is former world junior champion and senior world competitor for Russia. Diaz was the weaker partner in the Hr/Dz while Smart managed 27th in the short dance at 2015 worlds in a performance that would have made Meryl Davis look good in comparison.

      Robledo and Fenero are a weak team, but being familiar with the skating of all parties, Hurtado and Khavalin should easily be a much stronger and much more capable team than Smart and Diaz are. Khavalin has already been released by Russia and is in Spain. He'll be eligible to compete internationally by later this fall. Yet, there has been no formal announcement from the Spanish Fed while they seem to be going to great lengths to promote and get undeserved attention for Smart and Diaz. Watching USFS and SC for so many years, it gives one the sense that something is up and one undeserving team will get preferential treatment over the more deserving one. In the words of Rachel Maddow, watch this space.

  2. Do you think Tessa and Scott are dumb enough to make the same exact mistakes they did earlier? Skating at the same rink as their rivals, buddying up with them, making self-derogatory statements about their own physique. Figure skating is a subjective sport. When you tell someone, "don't think of bananas", that's all they will think about. Tessa's telling everyone "don't call me fat", that's all that will stick. What's coming next, a sham reality show to relive their nightmare again??

  3. I'd like to believe that VM were smart enough to get ISU confirmation and support first before they came back but given their incredibly dumb decisions and PR suicide in the past 6 years I am not sure these two are clever enough to tie their own shoes.

  4. It's been accepted dogma on this blog that Tessa and Scott began shamming for privacy reasons. As privacy became a non-issue after their teenage years, the theory is that it became a game VM and Moirville indulged in because of their hatred of the fans, their malicious delight in setting up the fans to be mocked.

    Now I find out the ice dance team of Hubbel/Donohue is doing the same thing. It cannot possibly be from the same motives as VM. HD were an acknowledged off-ice couple, they are of age, privacy was not an issue. How come when they became more recognizable as podium contenders they suddenly "broke up" and there are fake relationship narratives on social media? It comes across the same as VM in the levels of OTT disgust. Zach's "gf" also comes across insufferable, the same as Scott's "gf's" ever did. What a boost it's been for Smart/Diaz to be so linked to ice dancers with elite status, well known to skating fans. Most especially Smart, a total unknown, has acquired recognition through Donohue before she ever stepped foot on competitive ice with Diaz. It all smells just as repugnant as VM's shams.

    There's good reason to believe the motives attributed to VM are false. It's a known fact the ISU and individual skating federations are corrupt to the core. Someone needs to investigate why podium-contending ice dancers feel the need to create these fake narratives, why they are not allowed to be a couple off-ice (hello, also W/P. Who knows how many others). What does the ISU gain? It's clear they think they gain something. It's also clear the ice dancers feel compelled in this direction. It is plain to me this cannot be simply a matter of some ice dancers and their families getting off on jerking the fans' chains. There is something much bigger going on here that is exerting pressure on these ice dancers. Whatever that is, it needs to stop. No sports' federation should have this kind of power over the athletes.

    Sadly, 4:55, I think as long as these teams feel the need to hide their true status as off-ice couples it's most likely also an indication things have not changed for the better in ISU politics. Like you, I had hoped VM had received some type of confirmation of support before making a comeback. Now that I've been rethinking this whole shamming business, I'm seeing it as linked to promises of support. However, any entity that demands lies in exchange for support only exposes its own corruption. If VM were given confirmation of support, how can that be trusted as long as everything else remains the same? Regardless of any possible confirmations of support, I suspect it means nothing and things are the same as they ever were as far as ISU corruption in the scoring.

  5. I don't really believe that Virtue and Moir are married and have anywhere from one to three children but I'm curious as to what this blog's take on the fact that neither of them have been seen with a boyfriend/girlfriend for a year now is. Are they simply biding their time until the right moment to spring Scott's new girlfriend on the fans or for Ryan Semple to make his grand re-re-reappearance? Or will they actually be able to go through a figure skating season without that crutch.

  6. 10:06. So true. VM have never gone through a season without the crutch of a girlfriend for Scott, sometimes a boyfriend for Tessa. I'm waiting as well to see if they can go without. Their established MO would say they cannot.

    Waiting any day now for the new SO(s) to be introduced.

  7. So apparently VM are going to be on TSL.
    After Dave Lease claimed their skating had regressed, that they don't work hard enough, that Tessa faked her injury ... nice ...

    1. 6:10. I thought there would be better PR decisions now that VM have representation through Manifesto.
      Having a hard time understanding how VM talking with David Lease is a good thing.

    2. HuDo are also going to be on TSL with VM. TSL that was also unkind to them before they moved to Gadbois.

      Two shamming couples being interviewed simultaneously by TSL. Fun times ahead with people denying their marriages and children.

      VM, particularly Tessa, are formidable, and I expect they'll handle Dave. HuDo are going to take full advantage of the attention to illustrate and spread their sham lies. When they first started shamming, they used TSL to broadcast sham messaging. A year and a half later, as they continue to escalate, they'll use TSL as a tool again.

  8. These are two interesting reads, an ISU document on judging review and the corresponding discussion on FSU.

    As usual, it's a bunch of hot-air-blowing and sleight-of-hand from the ISU to disguise that they have absolutely zero interest in fair and accurate judging.

  9. Tessa and Scott are skating at the Autumn Classic Int. in Montreal - Sept 29 - Oct. 1 according to Skate Canada.