Tuesday, March 12, 2013

London Calling: Worlds 2013 Predictions (Pairs & Men)

If you take a look at the final “comment” on my 3/8 post below, you’ll see Universal Sports has posted its entire lineup of Worlds coverage for your convenience. Of course, it’s only convenient if you are blessed to have Uni Sports in your home (which I believe is also the only way for you to be able to see Uni Sports streaming video from your computer). The rest of us will wait oh-so-patiently for Ice Network to get the rights back next year...

But I digress... and must get back on track, for the whole event gets off the ground tomorrow (Wednesday) with the Pairs SP!

This year I’m trying my hand at predicting the entire Top 10 in each discipline. Not that I stand any better chance with this than with podium predictions—obviously there’s much more room for error this way! But I’m a glutton for punishment when it comes to matters of the boot & blade. Soooooo... here we go.

Pairs predictions:

GOLD: Volosohzar/Trankov (RUS)
SILVER: Savchenko/Szolkowy (GER)
BRONZE: Duhamel/Radford (CAN)

4th: Moore-Towers/Moscovitch (CAN)
5th: Pang/Tong (CHN)
6th: Bazarova/Larionov (RUS)
7th Berton/Hotarek (ITA)
8th Kavaguti/Smirnov (RUS)
9th Castelli/Shnapir (USA)
10th James/Cipres (FRA)

BECAUSE... I’m feeling the momentum for Volo/Trank. Because I’m REALLY feeling it for the Canadian teams (especially on home ice). Because whatever Pang/Tong still have left in the tank after all these years, I think they’ll save it for Sochi. Because Baza/Lario can’t convince me they’re for real, mostly due to her weak jumps. Because both the Italians and the French teams have made big strides this season (they were 11th and 15th last Worlds, respectively, so jumps to 7th and 10th would be substantial for both). Because Kava/Smir have been fading for the past couple of years.

And yes, only one U.S. pair on this list... near the bottom of the top 10... I’m hoping they’ll surprise me!

Here’s what I’ve got for the men... and I am not ashamed to say that I have changed my mind with this list at least three or four times...

Men’s Predictions:

GOLD: Patrick Chan (CAN)
SILVER: Yuzuru Hanyu (JPN)
BRONZE: Javier Fernandez (ESP)

4th Florent Amodio (FRA)
5th Daisuke Takahashi (JPN)
6th Michal Brezina (CZE)
7th Ross Miner (USA)
8th Brian Joubert (FRA)
9th Kevin Reynolds (CAN)
10th Takahito Mura (JPN)

BECAUSE... While I’m not convinced Chan will do any better at Worlds this year in terms of quality, I’m guessing none of the others will be spot-on enough to catch him. Because Hanyu sounds like he’s putting a crazy amount of pressure on himself to repeat with a podium finish (so I'm guessing he'll make it, but it won't be his best)... because Fernandez has the goods for sure, but I’m not sure he can deliver them at Worlds well enough to do better than bronze. Because Amodio has been improving in the back half of this season, whereas Dice-K (sorry to say) has been struggling in that same amount of time. Because Miner is a more proven elite world competitor than Max Aaron (who I think would do well to finish 11th or 12th here). Because Reynolds is now reportedly dealing with a ruptured cyst in the back of his knee—something that happened after his 4CC victory—and I would think he’s unable to challenge for the top spots as he’d hoped to do.

And, because every guy on this list (and several that didn’t even make it into my top 10!) has at least one quad in his arsenal... the stakes are CRAZY vulnerable. I believe any of my top 5 could win it, and any on the whole list could medal. Seriously.

One more thing before I go work on my dance & ladies predictions: I got my ticket in the mail just yesterday... so it’s official I guess... I plan to be in attendance for the Men’s Final in London! Unfortunately that’s the ONLY event I can formally attend, prices being what they are. Will any of you be there?

More on my travel plans (and especially how they’ll relate to any posting I do during Worlds!) as we progress through the week.


sara.raju said...

Ohmygosh it must've taken you ages to do these predictions. Even just to do my fantasy picks takes ages. It's like picking a favorite song or movie, it's so hard! I think I'm rooting for Hanyu and Fernandez though.

Anonymous said...

According to practice reports, Daisuke's quad seems like a disaster right now. He two-footed or fell 90% of the times, and after a dozen of attempts, he rotated only once. This means that he can earn only 3 or 4 points for each attempt, and if he tries three times in SP and FS, they'll earn only 9 to 13 points in total.
I hope that his team can see the reality and tell him not to use it, or if he does, just once in FS. Attempting one in Short and two in Free seems like the best way to bomb. If he placed as low as the 7th at 4cc with the huge help by judges in PCS (1st place in contrast to the 15th place on TES), he can easily go lower than 10th place. Hope he pulls an Evan to hold on to the 5th place.

Robin Agnew said...

I get to go to Dance & Ladies. VERY excited!

Kelli Lawrence said...

Yeay for you, Robin! Have fun on Saturday!