Sunday, January 01, 2006

Grand Prix Final in Tokyo

This evening I had the opportunity to watch the Men's Final Free Skate from Yoyogi National Stadium in Tokyo. It is quite an amazing building and a great venue for Ice Skating. Here is my review of the Men's Competition. AS you know, I am a skating enthusiast, and I've been watching skating for many many years, so I bring some perspective.

I am going to step up onto my soapbox now.

The Olympics in Torino Italy will be taking place from 10 to 26 February 2006. There is not alot of time between then and now. I am passionate about few things, skating is one of them. Being Canadian brings with it some PRIDE for ones country. Canada breeds some of the best skaters in the Ice Rink, beit that of Hockey or Ice Skating. Even when I lived in the U.S. I loved Team Canada. So this is my PLEA to you men on the Skate Canada Team, If your heart is NOT in your skate then please stay home and practice and practice hard. Don't go to Torino and make a fool of yourself and embarrass your home country of Canada. This is THE BIG SHOW!! The Olympics and second best is not good enough. I hope the men of Canada step up to the mark. I will expound on this note a little bit later in this editorial.

Team Canada for tonight (Buttle and Sandhu) in Tokyo...

Jeffrey Buttle skated in this competition. Although he had some problems that need serious attention, he skated well. MUCH BETTER than his other Canadian Counterpart. Maybe he should make sure he gets his skates "overhauled" before the Olympics. One does not need any mistakes with boots on the ice during an Olympic competition. Of the two Canadian skaters at tonights competition, If I had to bank my money it would be on Jeffrey. (Gotta get that Quad in there boy!!) I think this third attempt at this musical program needs to be changed and I hope you bring a fresh and new musical selection to Torino.

Jeffrey got the Silver Medal in Tokyo - a good finish, but you know what they say about the Silver medal in an Olympic Competition don't you? Practice - Practice - Practice...

Nobunari Oda - the Junior Champion in his first Seniors Grand Prix Final did remarkably well. At 18 he had a great program. He skated BETTER than Sandhu, He has set some lofty goals for himself, and I wish him the best. I know that there will be greater things from him as he practices and grows into a senior skater. It takes alot of time and practice - you can't rush the process.

Daisuke Takahashi is the second of the Japanese skaters we got to see this evening. He skated very well and should be proud of his performance. Daisuke won a Bronze Medal in tonights Competition. The Swiss Skater Stephane Lambiel was great he landed ( 2 ) Quads in his program after a nasty spill on his first triple jump at the beginning of his long program. Very Well Done. Fantastic! Stephane was our Gold Medal Winner. Well done.

The double Quad Program will RULE the Men's competition at these 2006 Olympics. Now the heat is on to polish and refine an Olympic Program. We should see great things from these Four young men. We missed the talents of a few of the Top Men's skaters and as well on the Female Skaters side too.

I've saved my criticism for last! Emanuel Sandhu, what were you thinking? I have seen you skate that program twice now, and this one SUCKED! You missed your mark, and NO, there was "NO SPARK" in that skate. If you are going to represent Canada in an Olympics you had better get your ass into the rink and you better practice your ass off until then, because with a performance like tonight, on Olympic Ice, I would shake my head, and wonder why you bothered.

Your performance was weak, even the commentators had lots to say when they say that "there was genius in your skating but as well, ABJECT FAILURE to complete required jumps. It was said that at least you get points if you rotate a jump, its better to fall, then not to rotate a jump. I really think you should consider if you really deserve to skate in an Olympic Competition with the few lack luster performances we have seen from you since the Skate in St. John's.

Like I said, If you plan of representing Canada in a Skate Competition at the Olympic Level you better have your best game on and you better come out of the chute prepared to skate an "Engaging and Powerful and Meaningful" skate. Because for me, it just seem that you don't give a shit about the fact that your skate tonight STUNK !! You failed to perform Olympic Requirements. And your peformance was wishy washy!! It just did not move me like a Men's skate should. You can do much better - you must!!

This is Canada you are representing, we EXPECT your BEST !!


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