Skate America: Predictions

I have a small break before I have to work myself to a state of collapse. In any case, let’s just look forward to what seems to be an exciting weekend this week at Skate America! The stakes are getting high as we enter into the second half of the grand prix series since being on the podium might now be a guarantee for a spot at the finals. In any case, here are the predictions…

Men

This week we’ll see a clash of the Japanese men with Nobunari Oda vs. Daisuke Takahashi. Oda’s programs don’t quite have the flair this season and Daisuke, being awesome and World champion should win this handily unless he goes insane and falls a whole bunch of times during his programs. Somehow he doesn’t have the power of the Patrick Chan score so if he does fall *knock on wood* he won’t have P-stupid-Chiddy’s overinflated scores. In any case, I wish Daisuke well. Adam Rippon should also be in hunt for a medal. I’ll be rather excited to see his programs again.

Ladies

I looked at this list and got really, really scared. Carolina Kostner has to be consistent or else Rachael Flatt will end being the front runner for gold. Despite her consistency, Rachael is useful for bathroom or food breaks… ‘Nuff said. Kanako Murakami will be skating again and I wish she had the jumps and the political force behind her to beat the entire competition but alas, that has yet to come. Sigh. In any case, I’m still a bit scared of putting too much faith in Carolina because it’s heartbreaking when a favourite lets you down. I had given up on her for awhile and then she shocks me. I hope she can shock me again so I can get rid of my cynical opinions on her skating.

Pairs

My baby Chinese pair is competing again! It’s only been a week since their silver medal from the Cup of China but I want them on that podium again. Because they are good enough, throw quad salchow or not. The gold however, will probably belong to Aliona Savchenko and Robin Szolkowy. They had a rough season last year with the return of Shen and Zhao but I don’t blame them. Who wouldn’t be nervous? Shen and Zhao’s “Turandot” LP from 2003 Worlds still makes me emotional and I bawl my eyes out almost every time I watch it. In any case, Savchenko and Szolkowy want Olympic gold and they want to stick around to get it. As a result, they have to maintain their A-game and winning this competition in a field with relatively weak competitors is crucial to getting their confidence back up. These two are a fabulous team and they have to start believing in it. Their “Out of Africa” LP is actually one of my all-time favourites. I hope that their programs this year can live up to it…

Ice Dance

Meryl and Charlie will probably win even if… well… Meryl and Charlie will only lose if they get injured and have to withdraw is the way I see it. There will be an interesting match-up between the #2 and #3 Canadian ice dance teams of Kaitlyn Weaver & Andrew Poje and Vanessa Crone & Paul Poirier. Weaver/Poje are so much more fun to watch and these two have become pretty evenly matched. I wonder what dress Kaitlyn will wear for the SD this time… The Shibutanis will also make another run for the podium and I’m awfully curious as to what will happen. It will be a tight race for silver and gold. I hope the Shibushibus and Weaver/Poje triumph over the mediocre, face contorting, juniorish pair.

The Cafe’s Picks:

Men: Daisuke Takahashi
Ladies: Carolina Kostner (For the love of God and all that is holy!!! Unless Kanako can miraculously take the gold.)
Pairs: Savchenko & Szolkowy
Ice Dance: Davis & White

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