Jump to content

micaelis

Members
  • Content count

    403
  • Joined

  • Last visited

About micaelis

  • Rank
    Let's Go Crazy!

Recent Profile Visitors

The recent visitors block is disabled and is not being shown to other users.

  1. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    Actually he does have it, but his humility prevents him from knowing that.
  2. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    Some thoughts on a couple issues that have emerged in the last several pages - First, the matter of records. The ISU has officially retired the old scoring system, meaning the records Yuzu holds are now considered 'historical', meaning they're set in stone. Nobody can break them. Which means with a blank record book every winning score in the first competition is technically a record. There's going to be a great deal of record-breaking in this first season so I would not take these new records too seriously unless there are those that are considerably above the second and third place scores. My guess is that by season's end Yuzu will be back to owning the record book and everyone else will be skating for second place. You have to remember that when Yuzu started acquiring his record scores, of the twelve records he set only one of those, and that very early on, was broken by someone other than Yuzu (Patrick back in 2013, and Yuzu reclaimed the record just weeks later). Every other record Yuzu has set has been broken by Yuzu and when other skaters exceeded a Yuzu record it has only been after he'd already done that himself. The other skaters were perpetually chasing Yuzu in the record book. Expect much the same situation with the new scoring system, one which IMO is geared to actually favor Yuzu's style of skating more than the others. Secondly, judge objectivity. I think the judges this coming season are going to be very careful in their judging since with the new system they're going to be under increased scrutiny by fans and competitors alike. They cannot afford to be seen as judging carelessly or judging with a bias. Judging of Yuzu's judging will be particularly stringent. Yuzu is right now the most high-profile skater on the planet and the spotlight is on the judges as much as on Yuzu when he skates. Everyone has to remember that Yuzu is also the most bankable skater on the planet. One can, indeed, talk of a Hanyu industry where there are magazines and books galore in praise of him and numerous other types of products bearing his name. There are a lot of yen and dollars and pounds and Euros and innumerable other currencies that move around because of him. His name fills the seats at competitions and ice shows, even going a good ways to filling them for official practices. He is, in short, figure-skating's cash cow and you don't want to damage the brand. The judges, thus, know they will be under the microscope when scoring Yuzu because he has some big money behind him and those with the big money are going to be watching them very closely. We should keep this all in mind as we venture into the new season. Finally, I am preparing myself for this season wondering exactly what I'll do after ACI and looking at that six weeks until his next competition. The long silence will be just like it has been this summer. It won't be quite as bad, though, since it's ONLY six weeks and the time can be spent by watching how his competitors fare in their competitions. The thing is that the season for us will be then quite compressed, with Helsinki, Moscow and the GPF occurring within a span of just a few weeks. That part of the season will go by very rapidly and shortly after that will be Japanese nationals where, presumably, Yuzu will take the crown back from Shoma. After that will be 4CC and Worlds and then it's back to ice shows and wondering what the next season will bring. There will also be the speculation after Worlds whether there will BE a next season for Yuzu. That particular question will be very agonizing come next March. Unlike Sochi Yuzu hasn't promised us (and perhaps even himself) whether he'll hang around for the next Olympics. The end of each season is going to be a cliffhanger for us. Prepare for it.
  3. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    This discussion of bullying brings some painful memories back to me of when I was in elementary school. There was this one fellow in the class who used to bully and taunt me (I wasn't the only one receiving that treatment from but I was the one he most often went after). Generally nobody took him on since it was known that his dad was with the Mafia, though not high up in it (this was 1950s suburban Chicago). Finally one day while walking home from school he grabbed my school satchel and I just lost it. I grabbed it back and then twirled, holding it and using it I knocked him to the ground and the next thing he knew I was a astride him pummeling him with my fists and all the while crying like a baby because I hated being so angry. There was a teacher driving by right then and she saw what was going on and stopped to pull us apart. I don't know if he received any disciplinary action but nothing happened to me as it was known he was a bully and I was by far the smartest student in my class so my version of the event was the official version adopted. As far as how his dad dealt with it I have no notion but I do know that the kid never bothered me again. The point I'd like to make, and this relates to Yuzu, is that frequently those who succeed well in things (I was at the head of my class, Yuzu was pursuing a successful competitive career even while still in elementary school) there are those who pick on them, I imagine primarily out of jealousy. I have a feeling however once he was doing so well on the junior level and almost certainly after he won the junior world championship, when there were then reports on his success on television and in the newspapers, that he became untouchable. Anyone who took him on knew that they would be automatically blamed. In fact I have a feeling at that point he wasn't dealing with bullies but people who were trying to be friends with him because he was famous. Success does bring its own problems. Super-success like he has now brings yet further problems and those relate to security. The brighter and more intense the spotlight the more attractive the target. Fortunately Yuzu seems to be coping with being an iconic living legend and one of the most remarkable things I have observed about him is how he doesn't seem to let all that stuff affect him. He's still the smiling, cheerful fellow today as he was back when he was a kid in junior high talking about how he planned to go after the gold at Sochi.
  4. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    I'm thinking a lot of what Yuzu's planning this season might not be finalized by ACI, with that appearance being simply a means of getting his feet (skates) wet. There's basically six weeks between ACI and Helsinki. That's almost like having another summer and unlike last year's disaster, this pause is scheduled. Yuzu might be using that month and half gap to do the real work for this season because by that point we can assume Yuzu's fully healed. It's not that he's not done real work already but I can't imagine he is not planning those weeks away from the competition to really perfect his programs. Yuzu hates just spinning his wheels.
  5. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    It's getting to the point that we might not have a media day. We're well into August and nary a peep. I'm beginning to think we're back before PC when all the world was awaiting news of Yuzu's recovery and what to expect in Korea. The blackout was total until the first official practice and even then Yuzu did minimal aerial work. The intent was to keep everybody guessing as to how far his recovery had progressed. As we would later learn when it was revealed he was skating on pain-killers the healing had not progressed a great deal, it certainly had not progressed to the point where he felt it safe to use all his different quads. Yuzu's strategy there was to keep his opponents guessing until he had actually skated his programs and then, of course, it was too late for his opponents to make the necessary adjustments to match him. We're now in the same situation, wondering how far his healing has progressed. I'm thinking that we might just have an announcement of the music being used and perhaps some photos of him in whatever costumes have been created. Minimal? Very. Keeps them guessing? Very. I wouldn't even be surprised if he deliberately dumbs down his program at ACI where the opposition might not be that formidable. After all he won the Olympics with just two quads. He might do the same there, leaving everyone wondering just how many quads he has in his armory. Remember, he has quite a bit of time between ACI and the first of his GP events. He can use that time to really bring his program together, continue working on whatever healing still remains, and contemplating the havoc all the questions he's leaving unanswered is doing to his opposition. He might even use that time to perfect the 4A he's now capable of doing (hope! hope!), relishing the surprise when it's revealed in the layout of his program or even then only revealing it by doing a 4A rather then a 3A in the performance itself. I'm not sure how much of that strategy is legal but if it is he's quite capable of doing it. I really think he's discovered the value of keeping his opponents guessing right down to the last minutes of the competition itself and if his fans also have to keep guessing, well, we're all just collateral damage. It makes his triumph all the sweeter for us.
  6. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    Might this be a mission to bring Boyang back to TCC? This late in the summer seems not really advantageous but we don't know what happened to make Boyang suddenly disappear after he'd finished with the choreographer in Toronto.
  7. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    Just a thought on media day. It would probably be better for Yuzu to go to Japan and get things taken care of there. It'll save the journalists there the expense in time and treasure heading to Toronto. It also gives Yuzu one last visit to his homeland before the season begins. If he does go to Japan the question is where does he meet the media, in Tokyo or Sendai. I'd go for Sendai. In Sendai, where? Icerink Sendai is the first choice though it might not be large enough. In the many hotels there, though, there are bound to be many meeting rooms that can be turned into press conference rooms. Whatever the media day situation ends up to be, though, I would not expect there to be a great deal forthcoming. Yuzu is likely to milk his rehab situation for as long as possible. He'll want the opposition to continue guessing just how far Yuzu has progressed on the route to full capability.
  8. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    Will NBC do any non-event coverage of Yuzu? They will if they are putting together a profile of those who are the greatest challengers to Nathan who is now THE American figure skater. Yuzu is definitely Nathan's greatest rival although that's probably just Nathan's view of things. Yuzu's greatest rival is actually Yuzuru Hanyu. That's been the case for a long time. He knows if he can beat himself he automatically beats everyone else. As Johnny Weir once said several seasons ago and I don't think things have changed since then - Nobody can beat a perfect Yuzuru Hanyu. Enough said.
  9. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    This is just one of the many reasons Yuzu received the People's Honor Award. It was not just for his skating achievements but also for his outreach efforts to those who suffered from the quake, young children, the elderly, all manner of things he does. He's much more than an athlete in Japan, actually somewhat like British royalty and there are responsibilities that come with that sort of fame. He takes those responsibilities seriously, knowing that he has the power to influence many people, so he wants to make sure that his influence is positive and praiseworthy. That's why he can pack the streets for a victory parade, pack the stands for an official practice and raise the ratings for a scheduled television appearance. In Japan Yuzu is a moral exemplar, the kind of person one would want your daughter to marry or your son to be best friends with.
  10. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    OK, thanks for the information. I was wondering about the whole arrangement. Things are clearer now.
  11. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    They're not going to spring media day suddenly. They need at least 24 hours, preferably much more, between the announcement and the event itself. There has to be time for all those Japanese journalists to pack up and scramble to Toronto. Plus the Russians who want to see Zhenya. Plus the Koreans. I'm not particularly worried about Jason's American journalists. They're just across the border and he's not the main event for the Americans anyway. Nathan's the headline-maker there. Fortunately Toronto's a very big city so there's plenty of hotel space. If the Japanese want to save a bit of money they should pool their resources and charter a jet. We know the Japanese will number in the dozens at least, perhaps one or two hundred. Yuzu is major news there, the kind were he an American, the reports would be on the front page of the general news edition, not the sports page, and he would be the lead-off story on the broadcast news. Fortunately TCC has had years of practice in managing the event. They'll need it with both Yuzu and Zhenya, the world's number one men's and ladies' skaters.
  12. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    I realize that he is coming back from a very serious injury, one that for awhile even threatened his ability to continue competing. Taking all that into account I think it quite possible he was well along in pursuing the 4A before the injury, since it's known he's been pursuing it for some years now. The fact that he has just recently publicly put the 4A forward as his major project makes me think that it's pretty close to being unveiled, otherwise why would he bring it up, unless he's using that as a diversion in order to spring some other surprise, such as perhaps a quad/quad combination. If anyone can do that Yuzu can. Perhaps a quint? Probably not, since they don't have a point spread for quints. The thing is that Yuzu has a lot of 'unfinished business', things he was planning on doing before the injury. He has to start a new string of GPF wins, wants to finally go gold in the 4CC, pick up another world title. 4A was part of that unfinished business and the fact that he has stated he wants to go after that jump means that it is now top priority. As I said before, though, he wouldn't have made such a public pronouncement if he wasn't sure it was near to accomplishing. That's just gut instinct on my part, just speculation but I cannot help but think something is going on here otherwise why be so specific?
  13. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    I really think he might do the 4A this season. The quad lutz, I have a feeling, is history. It spelled disaster for him and he really doesn't need it. With the loop, toe-loop, toe and salchow he has enough there to get the job done. Add the 4A and he's truly in business. Also I can't help but think that Stephen Gogolev, who is training with him (and probably has been for some time) is a motivator since it's very possible that he might be the first to do it. The irony of having the first competitive 4A landed in junior competition is one I find temptingly delicious. I think the only thing that might be holding Yuzu back is whether he should enter the 4A in the same way most other skaters enter the 3A or if he should attempt to do it with the patented entry he uses routinely for his 3A.
  14. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    The picture above - We're back to the mushroom head. Why? It's back to his roots. The Olympics were closure and now a new day is dawning. In the past he wanted victory. Now he wants perfection - ON HIS TERMS. Things are about to get exciting and the thing is, none of us know exactly what's coming up. We only know if it's Yuzu it's gotta be good. PS - Forget about the 4A. It's symbolic. Far more significant was Continues with Wings, also part of his closure. He's looking at life after competing and in these next few years he's going to let us in on his vision. If it is what I think it might be being GOAT will be peripheral. I think he sees what is happening to figure skating with its declining popularity almost everywhere except the Far East and he's decided to do something about it. Being Yuzu, I think he might be the only person who can.
  15. micaelis

    General Yuzuru Chat

    With all this talk about new programs I think many of us are missing something very important here, and that is how much of one of Yuzu's programs nowadays is already put together before he starts working with a choreographer. The key here is that he edits his own music and has said that while he is editing it he is building his program. The question is how much of that program is already there before he starts dealing with his choreographer? I imagine that in those days when he was first learning how to edit the music what he brought to his choreographers was much more a rough sketch. In this day and age I have a suspicion that what he's presenting to them is much more filled in and they are basically helping him to tweak it to the kind of perfection he wants when competing, although I feel also that if a choreographer makes some suggestions that would significantly alter what he's put together he will genuinely think over the suggestions. Yuzu's goal is a perfect program and anything that someone else offers in suggestion will not be ignored simply to satisfy his ego. He wants perfection and will take it wherever he finds it. The crucial thing here is that from when he first identifies the music he wants to use he takes charge of what he plans to skate. I'm not sure how many skaters have that much initial control and, more importantly, that much ability to envision what they want in the end. In many ways as I've learnt more about Yuzu's control of his programs I'm beginning to think that coaching might not be as attractive to him post-retirement as choreographing might be, maybe even choreographing entire ice shows. In addition to the competition business I think that Yuzu has show-business in his blood also. We saw that in his own ice show this spring. Moreover, coming of age in the era of the internet there are ways to succeed in ice shows in terms of profitability that go well beyond the event that takes place in an arena. Yuzu is media-savvy, indeed, savvy enough to avoid the pitfalls of involvement with social media by not getting involved at all. He's a young man who very much knows his own mind and is quite capable of thinking outside the box. Just look at his skating in the ice shows. Because of his endorsement income Yuzu doesn't need the ice show income. He must by now be one of the wealthiest of currently competing figure-skaters. He's skating in the shows to give himself more experience in seeing how they are put together and also to keep his visibility-level high and sustain his fan interest. I really expect to see more shows like Continues with Wings in future years. He might already be planning the next one. To get back to my main point, however, I think Yuzu has a major advantage in the fact that he is basically in charge of his programs from the first initial idea to the finished product. His programs are truly a part of him, not something handed to him by others. This gives them a unity that those skaters skating programs that are essentially sequences of moves handed over to them by others. This is not to say that other skaters do not have some input into their programs but I really do think that, given all we've learned over time, Yuzu's programs have attained their excellence because they are basically products of his own imagination and creativity. I would add also that it seems to me that Yuzu has a sensitivity to music and an innate ability to envision how certain moves may be linked to music he's considering. One other thing, Yuzu understands the way scores are made and accumulated. He is in many respects a master at gaming the system. He is a strategist and like I've said before, when it comes to putting together all the elements needed to achieve success on the ice, he's playing chess while everyone else is playing checkers. Remember, though! All this is speculation on my part, coming together by making connections of little snippets of information drawn from many different sources. In short, I could be wrong on all this, but I figured it's worth giving a shot to get these ideas out for others to think over.
×