Romance and Mystery Novels

by Alina Adams

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Friday, February 24, 2006


So I went 3-4 in my official Olympic predictions. Unofficially, after seeing some of the practices, I changed my mind a bit and said the women's podium would end up being Slutskaya, a Japanese girl, and Sasha, though I wasn't sure in what order. Cohen melting down wasn't a surprise. Slutskaya, I must admit, was.

Congratulations to Japan's Shizuka Arakawa!

In retrospect, I suppose I should have known she'd be the one to prevail. After all, at the Japanese Nationals this year, Arakawa was third. Just like the 2002 Olympic Champion, Sarah Hughes, was at the US Nationals in 2002.

In 1998, it was the #2 American, Tara Lipinski, who bested the #1, Michelle Kwan, in Nagano.

In 1994, America's top finisher, Olympic Silver Medalist Nancy Kerrigan was not even on the US podium, having gotten a bye.

And in 1992, though Kristi Yamaguchi ended up as both #1 in the US and the World, on the Men's side, it was US Silver Medalist Paul Wylie who managed to stand on the Olympic podium, not the National Champion, Christopher Bowman. (The previous year, at the World Championship, US #1 Tonya Harding ended up second to US #2 Kristi; obviously a catalyst for her eventual complete meltdown).

In 1987, Jill Trenary won the US Championship, but Silver Medalist Debi Thomas and Bronze Medalist Caryn Kadavy repeated their spots on the World podium.

I can go on and on, but suffice it to say that ice is slippery and, in the end, anything can happen. Which is what makes figure skating so exciting. And, despite the many naysayers who come out of the woodwork every four years to heckle -- a genuine sport.


  • At February 24, 2006 3:27 PM, kate said…

    Didn't Debbie Thomas rip off her bronze medal and cry on the medal podium in '88? I could be remembering this wrong, but I seem to recall she was really angry that she ended up in 3rd place.

  • At February 24, 2006 3:27 PM, Anonymous said…

    Such a shame about Slutskaya. For her sake, it would have been wonderful for her to have a better finish. But weren't 4 Biellman spins about 3 too many??

    Alina, I was wondering if you think Sasha will stick around for 4 more years?

  • At February 24, 2006 3:37 PM, kate said…

    Oops...nevermind, that was Surya Bonaly ripping off her silver medal later on. Sorry!

  • At February 24, 2006 5:19 PM, Anonymous said…

    Surya...I still miss seeing those backflips. What a shame her talent seemed to be squandered by having her mother as a coach. Anyone know what Suryea is up to these days? Denise

  • At February 25, 2006 1:49 AM, M said…

    I thought Arakawa's exhibition skate the next night was better than her long program, which was certainly clean and pleasant, but not the be-all-end-all. If only Sasha had done what Sasha can do, she'd be wearing gold. But as it is, I'm happy that she got a silver.

  • At February 25, 2006 1:57 AM, M said…

    I also thought Kimmie Meissner deserved to be 4th after the short program,for her triple-triple. she was really much better than I expected after seeing her at nationals. And Emily Hughes did much better than I thought she would. I was really pleased with Kimmie and Em's placements in the end, but they really need to kick it up a notch if the U.S. wants to maintain its dominance in this part of the sport. If they don't, both are destined to always finish 4-6 internationally, instead of higher where they could be with more work. I hope they keep pushing their performances and getting to the level we've seen from formerly deep U.S. Ladies' benches.

  • At February 25, 2006 9:13 AM, Anonymous said…

    I agree with M. Shizuka's exhibition number was beautiful!
    In her long program, she did the same spin combination 3 times. That was two times too many. If Dick Button has it his way, there will be changes and I have to agree. I'm already tired of seeing all the women do the same thing.

  • At February 26, 2006 6:16 AM, Anonymous said…

    So what's this I've been hearing about Irina S. having a tantrum after the free skate and throwing her bronze medal in the trash? This story appeared in John Zimmerman's column. Anyone know if this is true? I would be really surprised. Denise

  • At February 27, 2006 8:51 AM, TechMom said…

    I'd sooner say that if Irina had a tantrum, she was only mad at herself for blowing a second gold medal. It's not like her to be a sore loser.


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