OH, CANADA. You certainly threw us some curveballs this weekend. I'm glad I was home and able to watch the whole event, because if not, I would have been *very* confused. I'm not sure that I have yet to even process all that happened, but I'll do my best.
Oh, Jesus lord, the men were trying to kill us. That short program was AN EVENT, YOU GUYS. Someone tweeted the question of why the men are either amazing or a disaster and the simple answer is #quads. They're amazing when they're done beautifully, but awful for the skaters and audience when not. ESPECIALLY when you see one right after the other, after the other, etc. Patrick Chan and Yuzuru Hanyu are undoubtedly two of skating's greats, even though not at their best here. I give Yuzu credit for trying something new with his Prince short program, even if he does go back to his (stunning) wheelhouse for the free. Patrick's programs aren't stylistically new, but you can't blame him for choosing these programs when they show off his incredible skating skills they way they do. Can't wait to see these men at their best later in the season. Patrick skates next at Cup of China against Boyang Jin, Daisuke Murakami and Sergei Voronov. Yuzu will end the season at home against Mikhail Kolyada, Nathan Chen and Jason Brown.
Shoutout to Kevin Reynolds for being a surprise upset for bronze (lol Canada) and I really loved Misha Ge here. I thought both his programs were great choices and he performs them well. The American men had a really rough event. It also was nice to see Han Yan skate again, even if he's slowly building back to form.
Duhamel/Radford won here, as expected. They improved on their earlier season competitions and I have to say the height of that 3AT was impressive. They are such a technical powerful team that it seems hard to pick music that works with their style and you can see that they're planing around with music choices again this year. Eric is just so pretty to look at that it's hard to watch Meagn at times, which is quite unusual for pairs. They should coast to another easy win at NHK before heading to the Final, where I hope they can be challenged technically by other teams we haven't seen compete yet this season.
In their debut as a pair, Yu/Zhang had a great finish for silver. They came in as complete wildcards and their elements were really good for such a short time together. Though that probably isn't that surprising, as the Chinese are SO excellent in pairs. There was obvious controversy about how this pairing came to be, and it's hard not to see these two with their other partners still. Again, the elements are good but understandably the connection between them is entirely vacant at this point. They will skate against Peng/Jin at Cup of China. Also competing in China, shoutout to Iliuysheshkina/Moscovitch for their bronze medal. I actually called this one- I just had a feeling! Her lift positions are +100000 GOE and I think the music choices this year were good ones for them.
There was some controversy with Denney/Frazier not getting the bronze, but if you look at the scores, the PCS mark actually made the difference, which I agree with. A 2nd and 4th place in the Grand Prix is a great finish for an American pair, though, and they will be well in the conversation for Nationals.
Whew! That's it for Skate Canada. On to Rosteleco Cup Predictions tomorrow. No rest for the wicked in the Grand Prix, people!
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Reviews, predictions and opinions in the magical, sparkly and dramatic field of figure skating.