Monday, November 14, 2011

2011 ISU Grand Prix of Figure Skating: NHK Trophy Mens Free Skate Commentary

1) Tomas Verner (CZE)                              
     Music: Sing Sing Sing, La Vie En Rose
  • He is looking like a totally different skater out there today
  • When he is on, he reminds me so much if Ilia Kulike
  • I like this program on him a lot, it reminds me of his Singin in the Rain
  • That was a horrifying fall on the triple axel, landing in a split position
  • I'm surprised he can continue after that fall
  • I'm not surprised he doubled his triple axel
  • Oh wow we're taking the suspenders down for the footwork
  • Oh no, another footwork fall
  • What a shame because it was a great 1st half of the program
  • This will be a hit by Europeans and Worlds if he can clean it up
FS Score: 63.89 (TES) + 71.78 (PCS) -2.00 (DED) = 133.67
Total Score: 62.96 (SP) + 133.67 (FS) =196.63

2) Armin Mahbanoozadeh (USA)
     Music: Kill Bill
  • Good glide out of the triple lutz
  • Nice glide out of the triple axel into steps
  • I like this music a lot, I can see it being a hit by Nationals
  • He does a good job of using his whole body in the footwork
  • I like the intensity and variation in the music, but his performance is lacking spark
  • He needs to find a way of connecting with the music
  • Straighten your leg and point your foot in the sit position please
  • Unfortunate fall halfway through, and he was going so strong!
  • Still needs work, but a huge improvement from Skate America!
FS Score: 61.12 (TES) + 61.94 (PCS) -1.00 (DED) = 122.06
Total Score: 63.52 (SP) + 122.06 (FS) = 185.58

3) Samuel Contesti (ITA)
     Music: La Vie En Rose, Ca Gaze
  • This was a great program at Skate America
  • He is such a tall skater that it's hard for him to not look hunched when he tries to get deep into the ice
  • Really high triple axel
  • Suspenders are the accessory of the season
  • He uses his performance skills to his advantage by always doing character programs
  • Both of these pieces of music work together so well
  • He has such a love for the sport and that shows out on the ice
  • Not too many other people make their 3axel their 3-jump combination
  • He's really playing to the crowd in this step sequence
  • He's a little stiff in his upper body, I'd like to see him relax there a bit
  • He music really speeds up at the end, but unfortunately his final spin can't match the speed
FS Score: 74.52 (TES) + 71.34 (PCS) = 145.86
Total Score: 63.83 (SP) + 145.86 (FS) = 209.69

4) Ross Miner (USA)
     Music: The Untouchables
  • This was a strong skate at Skate Canada
  • His hair looks a little messy today
  • He has great body lines
  • Beautiful triple axel into a pirouetting move
  • Another nice triple axel
  • I love that he becomes a character in this story
  • Step out of the triple lutz, a little too much speed going in
  • I love the headless variation of the scratch spin
  • He is carrying a ton of speed
  • He looks a little stiff on his jump landings
  • I'd love to see deeper knees in his landings
  • This is a very complete program, very majestic
  • Very nice outing for him
  • He fought for a few landings, but that builds character
  • He's quite happy with this skate!
FS Score: 74.22 (TES) + 67.02 (PCS) = 141.24
Total Score: 71.12 (SP) + 141.24 (FS) = 212.36

5) Tatsuki Machida (JPN)
     Music: Don Quixote
  • He is so small and sprightly!
  • He SAVED that jump!
  • He's a very  nice skater with great expression
  • Pops the axel
  • The jumps aren't all there and most will probably receive negative GOE's but that doesnt detract from the fact that this is a nice program
  • He could use a lot more speed in this step sequence
  • Nice ending pose
FS Score: 54.57 (TES) + 68.62 (PCS) = 123.19
Total Score: 72.26 (SP) + 123.19 (FS) = 195.45

6) Konstantin Menshov (RUS)
     Music: The Race, Kill Bill
  • This is interesting sound design to say the least
  • His jumps are huge, but really ugly in the air
  • This program is so Russian
  • Hard fall to the hip, slid off the landing edge
  • Another hard fall to the hip
  • These jumps are so big he can't maintain control
  • He has not 1 ounce of expression on his face
  • Very slow spins 
  • That flexed foot is so ugly
  • Well this is a string of huge jumps and that's about it
FS Score: 58.57 (TES) + 64.64 (PCS) -2.00 (DED) = 121.21
Total Score: 74.67 (SP) + 121.21 (FS) = 195.88

7) Brandon Mroz (USA)
     Music: Carmen
  • Very tilted in the air on the Quad Lutz, falls
  • Hand down on the triple axel
  • I hate to say it, but jumps are all he has
  • He can't fall back on PCS when he misses jumps
  • He needs to point the feet on the sit spin
  • He has no expression on his face
  • His disappointment over the jumps is ruining this program
  • Singles the axel, this program is really going nowhere fast
  • If you're using overdone music you need to make it fresh, and this is not
  • Another popped axel
  • Has all the focus on the Quad lutz distracted him from the rest of his skating?
  • Yet another popped jump, this is painful to watch, I feel for him
  • I'd love to know how coaches inspire their athletes after meltdowns like that
FS Score: 45.44 (TES) + 65.56 (PCS) -1.00 (DED) = 110.00
Total Score: 74.83 (SP) + 110.00 (FS) = 184.83

8) Takahiko Kozuka (JPN)
     Music: The Valley of the Wind
  • I love that back pat that Sato gives Taka
  • I'd love to see him in a more modern costume
  • His expression has improved so much this season
  • Two-foots the Quad Toe
  • Good triple axel on a really deep leg
  • His improvement from Skate America to NHK is amazing!
  • This home crowd has really helped him to regain his confidence
  • That was a gigantic triple axel! 3-jump combo
  • I really like this choreography
  • Ends a little before the music
  • It wasn't perfect, but it was such an improvement
FS Score: 76.67 (TES) + 78.56 (PCS) = 155.25
Total Score: 79.77 (SP) + 155.25 (FS) = 235.02

9) Daisuke Takahshi (JPN)
     Music: Blues for Klook
  • Goes for the Quad Flip, falls
  • Amazing triple axel
  • I don't love all of his spin positions
  • All of his "in betweens" are the highlights of his programs
  • If there was ever a case for solo ice dance, it's Takahashi
  • His jumps are always a little questionable, but he's solid today
  • He just has the crowd in the palm of his hand
  • If he didn't have to do jumps and could just get credit for like 10 step sequences it would be a dream come true
  • He is overcome with the emotion of this crowd
FS Score: 80.04 (TES) + 90.28 (PCS)  -1.00 (DED) = 169.32
Total Score: 90.43 (SP) + 169.32 (FS) = 259.75

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