Thursday, November 19, 2015

2015 Rostelecom Cup (of Russia) Preview/Predictions

Here’s when to catch Rostelecom on IceNetwork (starting Friday at 7AM Eastern Time):


CONTENDERS: Nam Nguyen, Takahiko Kozuka, Adian Pitkeev, Sergei Voronov, Javier Fernandez, Adam Rippon

GOLD: Fernandez (ESP)
SILVER: Nguyen (CAN)
BRONZE: Pitkeev (RUS)

I don’t think Javi will have a lot of difficulty with this field, though my silver and bronze picks might be able to meet him quad for quad (or better, depending on how tired Javi looks in the second half of his FS).


CONTENDERS: Roberta Rodeghiero, Rika Hongo, Yuka Nagai, Evgenia Medvedeva, Elena Radionova, Adelina Sotnikova, Polina Edmunds

GOLD: Medvedeva (RUS)
BRONZE: Sotnikova (RUS)
DARK HORSE: Radionova (RUS), Nagai (JPN)

Russian sweep in Russia? Yep, maybe... especially since the role of Russian Phenom is currently being played by young Medvedeva. But that’s a lot of pressure... and Radionova has already shown she might not have the instant triple-triple power that she had last year. (Hongo, meanwhile, could be on a roll. And remember, she won this last year.) Sotnikova’s last time competing in an ice arena in front of the Russian crowds was... um... dang, what was that?? Anyway, this is her first GP appearance since 2013, and her first time back to Rostelecom Cup since 2012. Your guess is as good as mine as to how she’ll do here... bronze seems possible, though.


CONTENDERS: Kirsten Moore-Towers/Michael Marinaro, Peng Cheng/Zhang Hao, Valentina Marchei/Ondrej Hotarek, Ksenia Stolbova/Fedor Klimov, Yuko Kavaguti/Alexander Smirnov

GOLD: Stolbova/Klimov (RUS)
SILVER: Kavaguti/Smirnov (RUS)
BRONZE: Peng/Zhang (CHN)
DARK HORSE: Moore-Towers/Marinaro (CAN), Marchei/Hotarek (ITA)

Whew. Tough one. And I’m going against recent GP history with my 1-2 prediction, but I feel like living on the edge.


CONTENDERS: Kaitlyn Weaver/Andrew Poje, Anna Cappellini/Luca Lanotte, Charlene Guignard/Marco Fabbri, Elena Ilinykh/Ruslan Zhiganzhin, Victoria Sinitsina/Nikita Katsalapov

GOLD: Cappellini/Lanotte (ITA)
SILVER: Weaver/Poje (CAN)
BRONZE: Sinitsina/Katsalapov (RUS)
DARK HORSE: Ilinykh/Zhiganzhin (RUS)

The battle for gold—between two previous winners on this year’s circuit—should be fierce. And the battle for bronze—between two Russian teams that used to be one Russian team (Ilinykh/Katsalapov)—sounds melodramatic, even on paper. Bring your popcorn.

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