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(Wall Street Journal)   For the first time in history, a US Nationals figure skating medal winner is left off Olympic team, replaced instead by skater she beat, who just happens to be a blond-haired, blue-eyed, camera-friendly "golden girl" (who wasn't even born in the US)   (blogs.wsj.com) divider line 26
    More: Asinine, Mirai Nagasu, Winter Olympics, Washington Nationals, Ashley Wagner, Nagasu, Nancy Kerrigan, Kristi Yamaguchi, Michelle Kwan  
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4050 clicks; posted to Sports » on 14 Jan 2014 at 4:14 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest

2014-01-14 03:16:47 PM  
5 votes:
So they went with a far-more-consistent, two-time US champion over a quite-inconsistent, recent bronze-medalist skater?

I'm sure this doesn't even rank among the shady, unethical, and corrupt business in figure skating's history.
2014-01-14 07:42:41 PM  
3 votes:
As I said in the other thread:

Figure Skating isn't about being the best, it's about being the best looking.

This girl was selected because she's the one who has the best chance at parleying a post-skating career into something important like television or media. Maybe even an acting career. Because she's easy on the eyes.

What do Michelle Kwan, Nancy Kerrigan and Sasha Cohen all have in common? They all still have healthy careers. They also never won.

What do Sarah Hughes, Kristi Yamaguchi and Tara Lipinski have in common? ....They're all in the "where are they now" bin. They also won gold medals.

If you're a figure skater and you hope to turn your success into a rewarding life of media attention and personal profit, you gotta be attractive, and you gotta be not unattractive.

/also known as the Anna Kournikova career path
//just like holding Ace-King: looks good but doesn't win anything
2014-01-14 02:11:32 PM  
3 votes:
Nagasu also competed without a coach, which apparently is completely unprecedented, evincing that rugged individualism that so defines the American spirit...unless of course it runs afoul of corporate interests, in which case that spirit is completely crushed, swept under the rug, and replaced with something more palatable to the shareholders.
2014-01-14 11:34:56 PM  
2 votes:

Gunny Highway: MFAWG: I know which one would have objectively made the team every Olympics except this one in the absence of injury to a competitor that placed higher, and quite honestly that's all I really need to know.

That is a bit too nefarious for my taste.


I think you're just playing the victim.

I don't really think race is the issue. I think the issue is that Ms. Wagner kisses the right asses and Ms. Nagasu was stupid enough to believe that the playing field would be level at some point..
2014-01-14 05:39:59 PM  
2 votes:

Pumpernickel bread: I was about to get all outraged, but then I read the girls finished 3rd and 4th, right next to each other.  It isn't like they picked a girl who finished 10th over the gold medal winner.  Keep in mind that the girl who finished 4th fell twice during her routine.  Had she not done that, she probably would have won the gold.  It is the coachs' job to put together the best team.  I am guessing they felt that despite the fact Nagasu finished one spot better than blondie, blondie was actually the better skater and gave them a better chance of medaling in Sochi.

So I doubt there is really bias against Asian skaters in U.S. figure skating.  I seem to remember Kristy Yamaguchi being the darling of the sport a while back.


even "cute" michelle kwan was given the darling treatment after she did well in the Olympics.

America, where we really don't care about the race of our athletes...unless you are a minority and don't get on a team...then America is full of racists.
2014-01-14 04:06:11 PM  
2 votes:
No one wants to drag the specter of race, jingoism and xenophobia into the arena of sport...

...But I'm gonna!

ricewater_stool: A poorly written article by some asian dude with an agenda.


Yup.
2014-01-14 03:48:43 PM  
2 votes:
A poorly written article by some asian dude with an agenda.
2014-01-14 02:40:38 PM  
2 votes:

Nabb1: There are few things that I can hate more in all of sports than figure skating. The whole thing is so crooked it makes professional boxing seem as pure as the driven snow.


or professional cycling.  With the amount of doping going on there, the Tour de France trophy should just go right to whomever finished last, because clearly, that guy isn't doping.
2014-01-14 11:00:48 PM  
1 votes:

Gunny Highway: MFAWG: ClavellBCMI: dittybopper: Quasar: I visited my folks this weekend and they were watching the competition. Wagner got fourth, yes, but she was also champion the last two years and has performed well internationally, so they thought she'd give the US a better shot. As stated before, this isn't the first time. The racial/conspiracy thing is silly.

Ugh I know way too much about figure skating after that. Though that Cesario chick had a much better routine (better music, more flair, actually worked with the music, no mistakes) and scored less on the free skate than any of the top 4 so maybe it is rigged.

See, here is the thing that gets me about Olympic sports that are judged:  They aren't truly objective.

Skier comes in a quarter second faster than anyone else, well, you know the're the winner.  Skater crosses the line before everyone else, they're the winner.  Team scores more goals than the other one, they're  the winner.

It's objective.  You can measure it by some quantity, whether it be distance, time, goals, or even just against the other athletes in a head-to-head competition (I *LOVE* snowboardcross).

With stuff like figure skating, though, because all the scores depend on judges, there is always the distinct possibility of favorites, or even outright skullduggery.

And with a lot of countries, it isn't how well you did at one national tournament, it's how well you did the entire previous year against not only national opponents, but international opponents at your alleged level of skill, that determines who makes the national Olympic team and who does not. For once, the US ignored one single tournament to select their Olympic team for one particular sport. Which might mean the US actually sent the better competitor to the Olympics.

But we've never done it that way here, until now.

So either  we're  advancing without the US figure skating community bothering to tell anybody or the Asian girl got jobbed because (in no particular order): She's Asian, ...


I know which one would have objectively made the team every Olympics except this one in the absence of injury to a competitor that placed higher, and quite honestly that's all I really need to know.
2014-01-14 10:27:47 PM  
1 votes:

Gunny Highway: Delay: Wrong tab. Figure skating is not a sport.

Athletic competition so this tab will have to do.


How about the Politics tab where it belongs?
2014-01-14 10:24:24 PM  
1 votes:
Wrong tab. Figure skating is not a sport.
2014-01-14 09:44:44 PM  
1 votes:

Quasar: I visited my folks this weekend and they were watching the competition. Wagner got fourth, yes, but she was also champion the last two years and has performed well internationally, so they thought she'd give the US a better shot. As stated before, this isn't the first time. The racial/conspiracy thing is silly.


This is the first time they've selected a skater who finished lower at nationals over one who finished higher, but the rules have given them the option of doing that for a long time.  This is just the first time it really made sense to do so.  Wagner has had a MUCH better international record over the last few years.  I don't discount the arguments in favor of Nagasu - it's a tough decision - but the selection committee chose the minor headcase with some international cred over the major headcase who hasn't been taken seriously by international judges in several years.  End of story.  I don't always think that highly of U.S. Figure Skating, but I don't believe for a second that race played any role in this decision.

Ugh I know way too much about figure skating after that. Though that Cesario chick had a much better routine (better music, more flair, actually worked with the music, no mistakes) and scored less on the free skate than any of the top 4 so maybe it is rigged.

She beat Wagner in the free skate, actually, just not overall.  She was 10+ points behind all the top four after the short program after blowing her jump combination, which was too big a deficit to make up.  I like Cesario, but she skates more slowly than most of the top skaters (something that doesn't always come across on TV).  Some of her program components scores were in line with the top four, but she was (fairly) marked a little lower on the skating skills and transitions.  The quality of her jumps is just okay, so she didn't get the higher grade of execution points on them like Gracie Gold and Polina Edmunds did, and she was doing level 2-3 spins and footwork while the top four did mostly level 4's.  She performed her program well, but on the technical end, she was outskated.
2014-01-14 09:18:58 PM  
1 votes:

Gunny Highway: I thought Americans like winners.


Americans like people who look like winners more than actual winners.
2014-01-14 06:01:34 PM  
1 votes:
The writer seems to know a lot about race-baiting but doesn't give us any reason to believe he knows a lot about figure skating.  Where's the side-by-side comparison of each skater's strengths and weaknesses?

I agree that the safe bet would have been to just follow the Nationals rankings, and that it's generally a terrible idea not to make the Nationals matter (why bother with them at all?).  But if you have a system in which the stated policy is that placement at Nationals is NOT THE ONLY factor involved, then obviously other factors must be looked at.  Perhaps the 4th place finisher has a higher ceiling (better jumps, higher degree of difficulty) and they're rolling the dice hoping for a gold instead of 5th place at the Olympics.
2014-01-14 05:59:57 PM  
1 votes:
Let's see if we can save this thread.

iv1.lisimg.com
2014-01-14 05:32:37 PM  
1 votes:
Buried in the article:

The skating federation pointed to Nagasu's spotty record over the past 12 months, and to Wagner's higher overall standing in global rankings.

Bonus: I'm pretty sure we've had foreign born Olympic athletes before.
2014-01-14 05:24:08 PM  
1 votes:

Pumpernickel bread: Keep in mind that the girl who finished 4th fell twice during her routine. Had she not done that

...

That's the thing though isn't it? She fell. At the competition that (almost always) decides who makes the team. Anyone want to bet she falls at the olympics too?
2014-01-14 05:09:54 PM  
1 votes:
I was about to get all outraged, but then I read the girls finished 3rd and 4th, right next to each other.  It isn't like they picked a girl who finished 10th over the gold medal winner.  Keep in mind that the girl who finished 4th fell twice during her routine.  Had she not done that, she probably would have won the gold.  It is the coachs' job to put together the best team.  I am guessing they felt that despite the fact Nagasu finished one spot better than blondie, blondie was actually the better skater and gave them a better chance of medaling in Sochi.

So I doubt there is really bias against Asian skaters in U.S. figure skating.  I seem to remember Kristy Yamaguchi being the darling of the sport a while back.
2014-01-14 04:17:28 PM  
1 votes:
Subjectively scored events aren't sports.
2014-01-14 03:20:44 PM  
1 votes:
I visited my folks this weekend and they were watching the competition. Wagner got fourth, yes, but she was also champion the last two years and has performed well internationally, so they thought she'd give the US a better shot. As stated before, this isn't the first time. The racial/conspiracy thing is silly.

Ugh I know way too much about figure skating after that. Though that Cesario chick had a much better routine (better music, more flair, actually worked with the music, no mistakes) and scored less on the free skate than any of the top 4 so maybe it is rigged.
2014-01-14 03:02:24 PM  
1 votes:
www.tonyaharding.com

Knows a few people who could "fix" this...
2014-01-14 02:59:24 PM  
1 votes:

Nabb1: There are few things that I can hate more in all of sports than figure skating. The whole thing is so crooked it makes professional boxing seem as pure as the driven snow.


Try Ice Dancing. Even more crooked, and as a bonus it's still on ice.

I used to love watching both, they're impressive sports. But the judging just makes me far, far too angry.
2014-01-14 02:58:47 PM  
1 votes:
(who wasn't even born in the US)

Don't be stupid.
2014-01-14 02:49:52 PM  
1 votes:

Three Crooked Squirrels: I don't think she's blond.  And not to be studman69 over here, but if that girl's looks swayed the committee, they are exceedingly easy to sway.


Doesn't do it for you?
www.trbimg.com
2014-01-14 02:38:39 PM  
1 votes:
There are few things that I can hate more in all of sports than figure skating. The whole thing is so crooked it makes professional boxing seem as pure as the driven snow.
2014-01-14 02:17:59 PM  
1 votes:
Dick move by the USFS, but TFA's writer is really, really bad.
 
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