Thursday, November 27, 2008

Once More, With Feeling: NHK Dance/Ladies Predictions

A nice tradition at some U.S. Thanksgiving Day dinners is to have everyone present tell about that for which they are specifically thankful. Since we neglected to do that this year at my table, I’ll tell what I’m thankful for here:

Healthy family… gainful employment… new opportunities… excellent hot chocolate.

Oh—and a blog that allows me to pretend people might be entertained by what I think about figure skating. Particularly when NHK Trophy is starting in a matter of hours, and I have two more guesstimates to make:


Gold- Faiella/Scali (ITA)
Silver- Pechalat/Bourzat (FRA)
Bronze- Samuelson/Bates (USA)

It’s been surprisingly difficult to peg the outcome in this category of late—which is refreshing as a viewer, but maddening as a blogger :-) Still, I’ll give this one to the Italian team that took their clown-inspired, Moonlight Sonata free skate to silver in France. P/B, on the other hand, weren’t quite as impressive when they took bronze in Canada. In fact, I’d guess there’s a good chance Sam/Bates could even overtake them in this event… but I’ll leave them in 3rd just the same, as they're still much greener than the others.


Gold- Mao Asada (JPN)
Silver- Yukari Nakano (JPN)
Bronze- Ashley Wagner (USA)

I know Asada had numerous misfires at her Paris GP debut a few weeks ago, but I honestly can’t see any of her competitors catching her this time… including teammate Nakano, who has yet to beat her as far as I know. The way things have been going, though, I wouldn’t be flat-out shocked if Nakano did indeed make her move and prove spoiler in front of the home crowd. Laura Lepisto and Mirai Nagasu (the current U.S. National Champion) stand very good chances at getting that bronze, but Nagasu’s performance at Skate America didn’t make much of an impression on me, I’m sorry to say. I DO have lasting impressions from Lepisto and Wagner’s routines, though, and while Lepisto outscored her when they last went head-to-head, I found Wagner’s free skate light years ahead in terms of passion and excitement. If she can “up the ante” technically speaking, I think/hope it’ll be her turn on the podium.

For the
Clip of the Day I went back to the 2008 Nationals to show you Samuelson and Bates’ debut at the senior level (where they finished 4th, thanks in large part to a fall they took near the end of the skate). Enjoy this final weekend of GP qualifying!


Sharon said...

Boy am I missing Virtue/Moir...this ice dance field is weak, imo. F/S do not impress me, neither does P/B. I want to really like Sam/Bates but they just don't have "it" for me. I know I post mostly about the ice dance, it's my favorite. Need to go watch some ladies to have an opinion!

Kelli Lawrence said...

I was watching last year's "Umbrellas of Cherbourg" program earlier today (reviewing last year's NHK programs)and thought the same thing!