Perhaps Patrick Chan is peaking at the right time in his comeback season-we saw a clean short at Canadians, and finally a clean long here. That clean performance really let you relax into Patrick’s skating and really appreciate how good his skating skills are. He may be setting himself up for the best performance of his season at Worlds, which he will need to get a medal. It will still be interesting to see at Worlds if he is clean- will that even be enough to beat Hanyu or Fernandez? We shall see. But at least Patrick was able to pick up some nice momentum here and can head to Worlds with a strong skate under his belt.
Boyang Jin looked great at this event- those jumps are strong and they were ON here. His skating needs lots of work in the component area, but you can see, especially in his short program, that he’s making an effort to improve. That being said though, the component marks here were a bit high in my opinion, especially in the free skate. While he was able to medal in this smaller field, I don’t see his components being so high at Worlds when you add Hanyu and Fernandez to the field (similar to what happened at the Grand Prix Final). He is definitely a podium threat though if the other men make mistakes and I expect him to skate well there.
What a breath of fresh air it was to see Han Yan skating well! He’s really got good speed and I may be in the minority here, but I like his programs. His short is one of the better suited ones of the season for me. I do wish he looked more...enthusiastic at every moment of his choreography, but this was a fantastic set of skates for him. It’s been tough for him this season, and I hope we get to see him skating like this in Boston.
Oh, Shoma Uno, I just love you. Even when he makes mistakes, I am hooked on this kid’s skating. I was really hoping he’d medal here, and I am sure he’s not thrilled with this skate either. Worlds will be interesting for him- With Patrick, Hanyu and Javi being favorites for the podium, I see his key matchup really being against Boyang. Shoma beat him at the GPF, and then Jin beat him here. Shoma definitely has a components edge, but he’s got to be more consistent with those jumps. Either way, this kid has such a bright future and I can’t wait to watch!
Takahito Mura had a good event here! Even though he ended in fifth, this was a really nice way to end his season. His year started out pretty rocky on the Grand Prix, but he recovered at Japanese Nationals and here as well. Only two Japanese men get to go to Boston, so this is the end of the year for him, but you have to think that Japan will get that third spot back this year. I hope Mura can start his season off on a better note next year, because when those jumps are on, they’re really beautiful.
The American men had a really rough event here. Grant Hochstein’s short program was a bit of a bright spot, landing him in the final flight for the free skate, but he fell to 8th overall after the free. Max Aaron had a really bad short, and much like Gracie Gold, he just checked out mentally, like he was completely out of a competitive mindset. And seriously- Ross Miner looks like he was really hurt. I heard he had back issues at Nationals, and it certainly looked like he was still having problems here. My message to all of them- GO HOME! REST! STAY HEALTHY!
That’s it for Four Continents! I can’t believe the season has flown by so fast! All that we have left now is the excitement of Worlds : ) It’s like I want it to get here because I am so excited, but I also will be very sad when it ends. I will be previewing all of the action for Boston in the coming weeks, stay tuned!
About the Blog:
Reviews, predictions and opinions in the magical, sparkly and dramatic field of figure skating.