2017 NHK Trophy Men’s Preview

Mikhail Kolyada is the only top competitor done with his Grand Prix events, and he sits at 26 points overall.  Definitely enough to keep him in the running, but there are still six open spots available.

Yuzuru Hanyu will be a quad leader at this event, going for two quads in the short program and at least three quads in the free skate.  This will be a good indicator of how well he is healing from his injury if he can include the quad loop in his program and land it cleanly.  The rest of the top competitors plan quads in both of their programs, but are often sporadic in their success (Aliev, Voronov, Nguyen) or only plan one quad and have not been very successful (Brown, Rippon).

Two of the Japanese competitors are making their Grand Prix debut here.  Dennis Vasiljevs and Dmitri Aliev are the youngest at 18 while Sergei Voronov is the veteran at 30.  Yuzuru Hanyu is the only one in the field to have scored over 300 points, and no one else has even scored above 280.

Yuzuru Hanyu suffered an upset when he lost to Nathan Chen at Rostelecom Cup.  However, he has not been competing at full strength all season.  At the Autumn Classic International, he set the best short program score with a quad salchow and a quad t0e + triple toe.  At Rostelecom Cup, he went for the quad loop but it was under-rotated and he fell on his combo.  His program components were also significantly lower in Russia, in the low to mid 9s and he received no 10.00 marks, compared to 9 for his short program at ACI.  He won the free skate in Russia, even though he was edged out on the technical side.  He landed a quad lutz, quad salchow, and quad toe + double toe.  He popped one quad toe into a double but he also landed two triple axels and he only earned a slight negative GOE on the quad salchow.  Overall, he received 13 points from GOEs and had program components in the low to mid 9s.  He needs a gold medal to guarantee a spot in the Final while a silver would keep him in contention.   He has the best short program, score, 2nd best free skate score, and 3rd best total scores.

Jason Brown won a silver medal at Skate Canada.  He went for a quad toe in his short program at Lombardia Trophy (downgraded and fall), but in Canada he went for the safer triple lutz and triple flip + triple toe combination.  Brown is all about the total package, but one thing he could do to compensate for the lack of quad would be to backload the program and put all of his jumps in the bonus, instead of just one.  His program components at both events were in the high 8s to low 9s.   While his free skate in Italy did not include a quad, he went for the quad toe at Skate Canada, and it was under-rotated and had a fall.  He also under-rotated his triple axel and singled a loop near the end of the program.  His highest value element was his triple axel + triple toe in the bonus that earned him 15.37 points.  At both events he had program components in the high 8s to mid 9s.  He has been playing with his layouts thoughout the season, but hasn’t successfully hit a clean quad in competition, so it is unlikely we will see more than one attempt from him here.  He needs a gold medal to guarantee him a trip to his first ever Grand Prix Final, while a silver will keep him in contention.  He has the 8th best short program, 6th best free skate, and 8th best total scores.

Dmitri Aliev finished 6th in his Grand Prix debut at Rostelecom Cup.  He won’t be able to qualify for the Final, but he could be in the running for his first career Grand Prix medal.  His short program includes a quad toe and a triple lutz + triple toe combination.  He earned all positive GOEs and had program components in the high 7s to low 8s.  He struggled in the free skate at that event and didn’t finish in the top six for that segment.  He has the 9th best short program score.

Sergei Voronov is starting his 12th season on the Grand Prix circuit.  His career has been a bit sporadic, but he has won six career medals, and even qualified for the Final in 2014, winning bronze.  However, he has never won a gold medal.  He won silver at Ondrej Nepela Trophy and gold at Minsk-Arena Ice Star to start his season.  At Ondrej Nepela, he fell on a quad toe in his short program but also landed a triple lutz + triple toe.  His program components were in the low to mid 7s.  He didn’t fall on the quad toe in Minsk, but it did receive a negative GOE.  His program components were slightly better, in the mid to high 7s.  He didn’t have a good free skate at Nepela, but at Ice Star, he landed a quad toe + triple toe and a quad toe with two triple axels.  He even received a Level 4 for his step sequence.  His program components were in the mid 7s to mid 8s.  He has the 10th best free skate score.

Nam Nguyen finished 7th at Rostelecom Cup, so he doesn’t have a shot at the Grand Prix Final, but he can try and win his second career Grand Prix medal.  He has the 10th best short program score, but that was set at Autumn Classic International, where he hit a quad salchow + triple toe and a quad toe.  At Rostelecom Cup, he didn’t place in the top 6 for his short program.  His free skate at that event only included two quads (one under-rotated and a fall and a third one popped), but the rest of the program was better.  His program components are a bit on the low side, with most in the mid 7 range.

Adam Rippon is going into his 10th season on the Grand Prix.  He has medaled five times, and qualified for the Final for the first time last season.  He has never won gold, and has only won a silver medal one time.  He missed US Nationals and the opportunity to compete at Four Continents and Worlds last season due to a foot injury.  He started this season with a bronze medal at Finlandia Trophy.  His short program includes a triple flip + triple toe and a triple lutz.  He earned all positive GOEs and had program components in the low to mid 8s.  His free skate did include a quad lutz but he fell and it was under-rotated, earning just 4.50 points.  He also under-rotated a triple lutz at the end of the program and had a messy landing on a triple axel.  His program components were in the low to mid 8s and he earned Level 4 for his step sequence and spins.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Yuzuru Hanyu

Silver: Jason Brown

Bronze: Adam Rippon

 

Bios of the competitors:

Keegan Messing, CAN: He finished 8th at Skate Canada.  His personal best is 248.30.  He is 25 years old.

Nam Nguyen, CAN: He placed 8th at Four Continents.  He finished 7th at Rostelecom Cup.  He is the 2014 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 245.21.  He is 19 years old.

Michal Brezina, CZE: He placed 17th at Worlds and 12th at Europeans last season.  He finished 6th at Skate Canada.  He is the 2013 European Bronze Medalist and 2009 World Junior Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 243.52.  He is 27 years old.

Alexei Bychenko, ISR: He finished 10th at Worlds and 5th at Europeans.  He won bronze at Rostelecom Cup and placed 4th at NHK Trophy last season.  He is the 2016 European Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 255.52.  He is 29 years old.

Yuzuru Hanyu, JPN: He is the reigning World Champion and Four Continents Silver Medalist.  He won silver at Rostelecom Cup.  He is the 2014 Olympic Champion; 2014 World Champion; 2015 and 2016 World Silver Medalist; 2012 World Bronze Medalist; 2011 and 2013 Four Continents Silver Medalist; and 2010 World Junior champion.  His personal best is 330.43.  He is 22 years old.

Hiroaki Sato, JPN: This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 184.78.  He is 21 years old.

Kazuki Tomono, JPN: He finished 9th at Junior Worlds.  He placed 4th at JGP Japan last season and won bronze at JGP Sloevenia.  This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 225.30.  He is 19 years old.

Deniss Vasiljevs, LAT: He placed 14th at Worlds and 7th at Europeans.  He finished 8th at Rostelecom Cup.  His personal best is 239.00.  He is 18 years old.

Dmitri Aliev, RUS: He is the reigning World Junior Silver Medalist.  He finished 6th at Rostelecom Cup.  His personal best is 247.31.  He is 18 years old.

Sergei Voronov, RUS: He finished 4th at Skate America and won bronze at Cup of China last season.  He is the 2014 European Silver Medalist and 2015 European Bronze Medalist.  His personal best is 252.55.  He is 30 years old.

Jason Brown, USA: He placed 7th at Worlds and 6th at Four Continents.  He won silver at Skate Canada.  He is the 2013 World Junior Silver Medalist and 2012 World Junior Bronze Medalist.  His personal best is 273.67.  He is 22 years old.

Adam Rippon, USA: He won bronze at Skate America and bronze at Trophee de France last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he finished 6th.  He is the 2010 Four Continents Champion and 2008 and 2009 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 267.53.  He is 27 years old.

2017 Rostelecom Cup Men’s Preview

The first event of the Grand Prix season is starting off with a bang with the matchup of Nathan Chen and Yuzuru Hanyu.  Chen had his breakout season last year, qualifying for the Grand Prix Final in his first senior season and then going on to beat Hanyu at Four Continents.  He is the first man to land four quads in a program and the first to land five.  He also was the first to land a quad lutz and a quad flip in the same program.  He has the most versatile arsenal of jumps and has been working on his components with famed dance coach Marina Zoueva.  But Hanyu is the reigning Olympic Champion and has an arsenal of quads in his back pocket as well.  When he is on, his program components are through the roof and can’t be matched by anyone.  He was the first to break the 300 point mark and still holds the record for highest scores.  But both are coming to this event with some setbacks.  Chen did not have all of his quads in his program at the US International Figure Skating Classic and he struggled at Worlds last season as his boots were breaking down too fast from all the quads in his programs.  Hanyu is battling back from an injury, and his signature quad loop wasn’t in his programs at the Autumn Classic International.

Nathan Chen is entering his sophomore season on the senior circuit after winning a silver medal last year to qualify for the Grand Prix Final, where he also won the silver medal.  He started his season with a gold medal at the US International Figure Skating Classic.  At that event he landed a quad flip + double toe and a triple lutz in the bonus, both jumps which are likely to be upgraded.  He had strong program components, with several judges giving him 9 and 9.25 marks, but he averaged in the high 8s.  His free skate included a quad loop and a quad lutz but he doubled a toe in the second half and ended up with a repeated double toe in combination.  While this is unlikely to be his jump content for the season, as he’ll likely have four and even five quads in his free skate, he did earn all positive GOEs worth 13 points.  His program components were slightly better with his composition mark reaching 9.05.  He has the 4th best short program, 2nd best free skate, and 3rd best total scores.

Yuzuru Hanyu is entering his 8th Grand Prix season and has won 10 medals on the circuit.  He has qualified for the Final for 6 years in a row, and has won gold for the last four years.  He started off his season with a silver medal at the Autumn Classic International.  He had watered down programs at that event due to an injury and could not complete his signature quad loop.  How he does at this event will largely depend on how well that injury has healed and which jumps he is successfully able to add back to his arsenal.  His short program at the ACI included a quad salchow and a quad toe + triple toe in the bonus.  He earned Level 4 for his spins and steps and all positive GOEs netting 15 points.  He received nine 10.00 marks and his program components all averaged in the mid to high 9s.  While he was able to put together a solid short program, his free skate was largely held up by his program components.  He landed a quad salchow + triple toe in the bonus that earned him 19.08 points but his quad toe was downgraded and he fell on a triple axel.  He also singled his opening lutz and doubled two toes.  The errors cost him some points in the program components as he had marks as low as 8.95 for transitions.  He has the best short program and 4th best total scores.

Mikhail Kolyada is going into his third season on the Grand Prix, and while he has never won a medal, he has never placed lower than 5th.  He competed in two Challenger Series events this fall, winning gold at Ondrej Nepela Trophy, before finishing 4th at Finlandia Trophy.  His biggest issue at the start of the season has been putting two clean programs together.  He was not even in the picture after the short program at Nepela Trophy but his free skate was strong enough to win him the gold medal.  His free skate included a quad lutz, quad salchow (fall), and a quad toe (fall) in the bonus.  He earned an impressive Level 4 on all of his spins and his step sequence with program components in the mid to high 8s.  At Finlandia Trophy, his short program included a quad toe + triple toe and he earned all positive GOEs.  His program components ranged from 7.92 to 8.17.  He has the 5th best short program, 3rd best free skate, and 10th best total scores.

Misha Ge is appearing on the Grand Prix for the 5th season.  He also has never won a medal.  He started his season with a 4th place finish at the Autumn Classic International.  His short program at that event did not include a quad, and his triple lutz + triple toe combination was not in the bonus.  He could put his two most difficult jumping passes in the bonus to try and maximize his points without the quad, but that doesn’t seem to be his strategy at this point.  He earned program components in the high 7s to low 8s.  His free skate also did not include a quad and while he has five jumping passes in the bonus, two are his lower value double axels.  He earned all positive GOEs except for on his solo triple axel and had slightly higher program components in the low to mid 8s.  He has the 9th best free skate score.

Nam Nguyen will compete on the Grand Prix for the fourth year and he has one previous medal, a bronze from his first event back in 2014.  He placed 5th at the Autumn Classic International earlier this season. His short program included a quad salchow + triple toe and a quad toe.  He earned all positive GOEs, but he finished well behind his training mates in that segment of competition as his GOEs were not very high and his program components were comparatively low, ranging from 7.15 to 7.70.  His free skate included a quad salchow + triple toe, quad toe in the bonus, and quad salchow (fall) in the bonus.  He doubled two other jumps in the program.  Again, his program components were on the low side in the low to mid 7s.  He has the 6th best short program score.

Denis Ten is a veteran at this event, starting his 9th season on the Grand Prix.  He has only medaled twice and has never won gold.  He competed for the first time last week at Cup of Nice, a senior B event and did not have the best outing.  He’s also been working his way back from injury so he might not quite be back into competitive shape yet.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Nathan Chen

Silver: Yuzuru Hanyu

Bronze: Mikhail Kolyada

 

Bios of the competitors:

Nam Nguyen, CAN: He placed 8th at Four Continents.  He finished 6th at Skate America and 8th at NHK Trophy last season.  He is the 2014 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 245.21.  He is 19 years old.

Daniel Samohin, ISR: He finished 33rd at Worlds and 6th at Junior Worlds.  He placed 5th at Skate Canada and 8th at Cup of China last season.  He is the 2016 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 236.65.  He is 19 years old.

Yuzuru Hanyu, JPN: He is the reigning World Champion and Four Continents Silver Medalist.  He won silver at Skate Canada and gold at NHK Trophy last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he won gold.  He is the 2014 Olympic Champion; 2014 World Champion; 2015 and 2016 World Silver Medalist; 2012 World Bronze Medalist; 2011 and 2013 Four Continents Silver Medalist; and 2010 World Junior champion.  His personal best is 330.43.  He is 22 years old.

Keiji Tanaka, JPN: He placed 19th at Worlds and 13th at Four Continents.  He finished 7th at Rostelecom cup and won bronze at NHK Trophy last season.  He is the 2011 World Junior Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 248.44.  He is 22 years old.

Denis Ten, KAZ: He finished 16th at Worlds.  He won silver at Trophee de France last season.  He is the 2014 Olympic Bronze Medalist, 2013 World Silver Medalist, 2015 World Bronze Medalist, and 2015 Four Continents Champion.  His personal best is 289.46.  He is 24 years old.

Deniss Vasiljevs, LAT: He placed 14th at Worlds and 7th at Europeans.  He finished 11th at Rostelecom Cup and 6th at NHK Trophy last season.  His personal best is 239.00.  He is 18 years old.

Dmitri Aliev, RUS: He is the reigning World Junior Silver Medalist.  He won gold at JGP Czech Republic and placed 4th at JGP Slovenia last season to qualify for the Junior Grand Prix Final where he won gold.  This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 247.31.  He is 18 years old.

Mikhail Kolyada, RUS: He placed 8th at Worlds and is the reigning European Bronze Medalist.  He finished 4th at Rostelecom Cup and 5th at NHK Trophy last season.  His personal best is 279.41.  He is 22 years old.

Andrei Lazukin, RUS: This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 210.66.  He is 19 years old.

Nathan Chen, USA: He finished 6th at Worlds and is the reigning Four Continents Champion.  He placed 4th at Trophee de France and won silver at NHK Trophy last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he won silver.  He is the 2014 World Junior Bronze Medalist.  His personal best is 307.46.  He is 18 years old.

Grant Hochstein, USA: He placed 9th at Four Continents.  He finished 11th at Skate Canada and 11th at NHK Trophy.  His personal best is 237.25.  He is 27 years old.

Misha Ge, UZB: He placed 12th at Worlds and 7th at Four Continents.  He placed 6th at Skate Canada and 7th at Trophee de France last season.  His personal best is 246.19.  He is 26 years old.

2016 Skate America Men’s Free Skate

Free Skate

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Shoma UNO JPN 190.19 100.11 91.08 9.11 8.86 9.21 9.11 9.25 1.00 #9
2 Jason BROWN USA 182.63 92.61 90.02 8.89 8.79 9.11 9.04 9.18 0.00 #10
3 Adam RIPPON USA 174.11 89.25 85.86 8.50 8.21 8.75 8.68 8.79 1.00 #8
4 Boyang JIN CHN 172.15 95.15 78.00 7.82 7.39 7.93 7.93 7.93 1.00 #5
5 Sergei VORONOV RUS 166.60 86.00 80.60 8.18 7.54 8.36 8.11 8.11 0.00 #7
6 Maxim KOVTUN RUS 163.32 88.40 75.92 7.82 7.14 7.71 7.61 7.68 1.00 #1
7 Nam NGUYEN CAN 159.64 82.70 76.94 7.64 7.50 7.79 7.68 7.86 0.00 #6
8 Timothy DOLENSKY USA 148.94 74.24 74.70 7.57 7.25 7.57 7.46 7.50 0.00 #3
9 Jorik HENDRICKX BEL 148.29 72.57 75.72 7.54 7.29 7.64 7.68 7.71 0.00 #4
10 Brendan KERRY AUS 140.14 70.16 71.98 7.29 6.96 7.21 7.32 7.21 2.00 #2

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Shoma UNO
JPN
279.34 1 1
2 Jason BROWN
USA
268.38 3 2
3 Adam RIPPON
USA
261.43 2 3
4 Sergei VORONOV
RUS
245.28 5 5
5 Boyang JIN
CHN
245.08 8 4
6 Nam NGUYEN
CAN
239.26 4 7
7 Maxim KOVTUN
RUS
230.75 10 6
8 Timothy DOLENSKY
USA
226.53 6 8
9 Jorik HENDRICKX
BEL
224.91 7 9
10 Brendan KERRY
AUS
211.76 9 10

2016 Skate America Men’s Short Program

Group 1

Brendan Kerry, AUS: 37.81 TES + 34.81 PCS -1.00 = 71.62

  • Off in the air on the quad toe and falls
  • Triple lutz + triple toe
  • Singing in the Rain suits his skating so perfectly–he is very light and airy and has the posture and finishing touches that give him the look of a dancer
  • I would like to see him commit a little more to some of the choreographic moments instead of going through the motions
  • Really far forward on the landing of the triple axel but hangs on to it
  • I love the playfulness of this step sequin and that it really plays to the music and character of the program and doesn’t seem so much like an element
  • He has such a gorgeous camel position in his spins

Boyang Jin, CHN: 37.89 TES + 37.04 PCS -2.00 = 72.93 and into 1st place

  • Fall on his opening quad lutz–so uncharacteristic for him; this was his intended combo jump
  • I love seeing him play with the choreography and smile in his choreography–a big step up for him
  • Triple axel step out
  • Quad toe feet get caught up underneath him and he falls–this will really hurt since he loses points for not having a combo
  • Despite the very uncharacteristic jump errors I think this program is a great vehicle for him and you can already see the effort he has put into upping his performance and PCS scores; still not where a Hanyu or a Rippon is but much better than last season where he mostly skated from one end of the rink to the other and jumped

Timothy Dolensky, USA: 39.98 TES + 37.61 PCS = 77.59 and into 1st place

  • Nice triple lutz with one arm variation
  • Very solid triple axel with a great landing position
  • Nice lunge into a camel spin
  • He has such ease to his skating and really makes everything look effortless
  • Triple flip + triple toe toe footed the landing
  • I love the freedom and energy he skates with in his step sequence
  • I’d like to see his sit spin be just a little faster to keep up with the beat of the music but his combo spin is much better
  • I really love this program and Ryan Jahnke did a great job with the choreography

Sergei Voronov, RUS: 42.08 TES + 37.60 PCS -1.00 = 78.68 and into 1st place

  • Quad toe two footed the landing and fell
  • I love the triple axel right as the music is building
  • Triple loop + triple toe a little forward on the landing
  • I find the last half of this music suits his skating more than the first half and it seems to be giving him more power and speed as well

Nam Nguyen, CAN: 42.18 TES + 37.44 PCS = 79.62 and into 1st place

  • Really nice quad salchow + triple toe
  • Solid triple axel
  • I’d like to see some more speed in his camel spin but the positions are nice
  • He skates this choreography almost a little too easy and I’d love to see just a bit more pop in some of his movements
  • Nice triple lutz
  • Such a nice program from him after a disappointing season last year
  • I’m really looking forward to seeing how the performance aspect of this performance grows throughout the year as I think it works really well for him and there’s so much he can do with it

 

Group 2

Maxim Kovtun, RUS: 30.44 TES + 36.99 PCS = 67.43 and into 6th place

  • Really nice quad salchow + triple toe
  • Popped his quad toe into a double
  • Nice side twisting bent leg camel position in his first spin but lacking speed
  • Popped his triple axel into a single
  • Such a shame after hitting the big opening combo that the rest of the jumps in the program didn’t work for him

Jorik Hendrickx, BEL: 38.61 TES + 38.01 PCS = 76.62 and into 4th place

  • Nice opening triple axel
  • Traveling a bit on his second spin combination
  • He has great use of his hands to really express the music
  • Triple lutz + triple toe step out
  • Triple loop a bit of a stilted landing but hangs on
  • I’d like to see this step sequence be just a touch stronger to match the intensity of the music but I absolutely love the choreography
  • This program really has the potential to be something special if he gets just a bit more power and hits the jumps cleanly

Jason Brown, USA: 43.32 TES + 43.43 PCS -1.00 = 85.75 and into 1st place

  • Quad toe looked rotated but he fell
  • Really nice triple axel
  • Nice triple lutz + triple toe
  • His skating is just so effortless and fluid and it’s easy to forget that this is not a show program
  • The one thing I would like to see from him is more connection to the story from a facial expression stand point

Shoma Uno, JPN: 46.87 TES + 43.28 PCS -1.00 = 89.15 and into 1st place

  • Quad flip with a bit of a turnout but nicely done
  • Quad toe + triple toe gets his feet tied up underneath him on the second jump and falls
  • Triple axel just slightly forward on the landing but hangs on
  • Despite the fact that he is breaking new technical ground and is the only man in the world landing quad flips, where he really shines is in the step sequence and the artistic side of skating
  • Gorgeous final upright spin position

Adam Rippon, USA: 44.42 TES + 42.90 PCS = 87.32 and into 2nd place

  • Nice triple flip + triple toe
  • Solid triple axel
  • Nice layback spin into a good camel
  • Rippon lutz
  • He is killing this step sequence and this is a great music selection for him to really show off that fun side of his personality
Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CO IN Ded.
StN.
1 Shoma UNO JPN 89.15 46.87 43.28 8.75 8.39 8.68 8.71 8.75 1.00 #9
2 Adam RIPPON USA 87.32 44.42 42.90 8.43 8.18 8.79 8.61 8.89 0.00 #10
3 Jason BROWN USA 85.75 43.32 43.43 8.50 8.57 8.71 8.79 8.86 1.00 #8
4 Nam NGUYEN CAN 79.62 42.18 37.44 7.32 7.29 7.68 7.54 7.61 0.00 #5
5 Sergei VORONOV RUS 78.68 42.08 37.60 7.71 7.18 7.57 7.57 7.57 1.00 #4
6 Timothy DOLENSKY USA 77.59 39.98 37.61 7.50 7.29 7.71 7.50 7.61 0.00 #3
7 Jorik HENDRICKX BEL 76.62 38.61 38.01 7.54 7.36 7.68 7.64 7.79 0.00 #7
8 Boyang JIN CHN 72.93 37.89 37.04 7.57 7.07 7.32 7.54 7.54 2.00 #2
9 Brendan KERRY AUS 71.62 37.81 34.81 7.07 6.71 6.96 7.07 7.00 1.00 #1
10 Maxim KOVTUN RUS 67.43 30.44 36.99 7.57 7.07 7.21 7.64 7.50 0.00 #6

2016 World Championships Men’s Preview

This has truly been an exciting season in men’s figure skating with the limits of the sport being pushed.  It is not uncommon to see two quads in the short program and three or four in the free skate.  But more importantly, these difficult jumps are being combined with the artistic side of skating to truly complete the whole package.  There is already talk of revamping the scoring system for next year as the program components can no longer keep up with the technical scores these men are achieving, even when they are virtually perfect.

Since 2011, Patrick Chan, Yuzuru Hanyu or Javier Fernandez have won the World title, and it is fitting that these three are the top contenders going into these Championships.  Despite how gifted all these skaters are, there has still been a clear delineation between them and a good separation between them and the rest of the pack.

No skater had ever passed the 300 point mark in international competition until Yuzuru Hanyu did this season.  Not only did he pass it, he smashed it, twice, setting an astonishing 330 points at the Grand Prix Final.  He hit all of his difficult elements with positive GOEs and nearly perfect program components and truly showed what perfection can look like in an often imperfect sport.  He has scored over 100 in the short program and over 200 in the free skate with over 100 on the technical side.  If he can come even close to the last two marks he set in competition, this should be a cakewalk for him.  However, he did win the silver at Skate Canada with a score of 259 proving that he is indeed human.  He has the best short program, best free skate and best total scores.

Javier Fernandez trains alongside Hanyu and he made history last season when he became the first Spanish skater to win a World title.  He has long been known for his jumps but is really starting to show off the finer side to his skating.  His Guys and Dolls free skate in particular plays into his wheel house and when he’s on with his jumps, the crowd really gets into the program.  He enters this event as the four time reigning European Champion and he crossed the 300 point mark at this years Championships, becoming only the 2nd skater to do so.  Like Hanyu, he can score over 100 in the short program and over 200 in the free skate with over 100 points on the technical side.  He has the 2nd best short program, 3rd best free skate and 2nd best total scores.

Patrick Chan considered retiring after his 4th place finish at the Grand Prix Final, but stuck with it and won the title at Four Continents last month.  His short program has been his nemesis this season and he’s had to dig himself out of a hole in the free skate to try and make it on to the podium.  Even after a stellar overall performance at Four Continents, he still does not have a short program score that even ranks in the top 10.  This could be very dangerous for him, as he’ll want to be in the final warmup group at Worlds and not competing earlier in the free skate.  He is capable of scoring over 200 points in the free skate with 100 on the technical side, and is one of only three skaters this season to do so.  However, his personal best is still a whopping 7 points lower than Chan’s and 35 points below Hanyu.  He has the 2nd best free skate and 3rd best total scores.

Outside of these three veterans, there are several youngsters knocking on the door and hoping to land their way on the podium.

Boyang Jin has some of the most impressive jumps in skating, landing quad lutz + triple toe combinations with ease, something no other man has done before.  He’s also one of only two skaters attempting four quads in his free skate (the other is Nathan Chen who is out for the rest of the season).  His short program has a quad lutz + triple toe plus a quad toe in the bonus.  His free skate has four quads, including two in the bonus.  His focus is mostly on the jumps and he needs to work on developing transitions, choreography and a connection with his music and the audience.  He made up some ground at Four Continents, setting new personal bests in all segments of competition and nearing the 290 mark, putting him within 5 points of Chan.   He can easily score over 100 points on the TES in his free skate, but it’s the program components that are holding him back from reaching the 200 point mark for the program as a whole.  He has the 3rd best short program, 4th best free skate and 4th best total scores.

Shoma Uno had a great start to his senior debut season, winning the bronze medal at the Grand Prix Final, ahead of Patrick Chan.  While he has yet to score 200 points for his free skate, he has scored over 100 on the technical side.  His short program includes a quad toe in the bonus and his free skate includes two quads, one in combination and one in the bonus.  What Uno does really well, especially for a young skater, is balance the artistry with his technical performance.  He’s already shown signs of the dynamic performance style that the Japanese are becoming known for.  He had a bit of a meltdown at Four Continents, finishing 4th, however, he wasn’t far off of his personal best.  He has the 5th best short program, 5th best free skate and 5th best total scores.

Han Yan is in his third senior season, but has experienced some ups and downs in his career.  He had a solid if unimpressive Grand Prix campaign, finishing 4th and winning bronze.  He was a surprise bronze medal finisher at Four Continents where he set new personal bests in the free skate and total score.  He still has a ways to go to catch the top tier of men at this event, but he could put out another set of strong performances to finish in the top 6 here.  He has the 6th best short program, 7th best free skate and 7th best total scores.

Two Americans will be looking to hold on to the US’s three spots at Worlds for next season in front of their home crowd.

Max Aaron put out two relatively clean programs at US nationals but still settled for a silver medal.  He showed at Skate America that he has all the goods to be a top contender with lightning speed, great jumps and a focus on artistry and performance.  However, he has been chasing that performance all season and hasn’t quite lived up to it again.  He has the 10th best short program, 9th best free skate and 9th best total scores.

Adam Rippon is all artistry all the time and his spins and edges along with his choreography and well renowned in the sport.  However, he took home the US title in January despite not attempting a quad in the short program and botching the quad attempt in his free skate.  He is capable of landing a quad lutz, but it is wildly inconsistent and in his case, not worth the risk.  He doesn’t attempt any other quad jump so he’s banking on that one jump going well to get the points he needs.  His triple axel can also be a bit shaky but he is known for his signature Rippon triple lutz.

The wild card in this event is Denis Ten.  He is the skater most often counted out, but who comes through at the end of the season. He is on the season’s best list, although these scores come from a Challenger Series event which are often slightly overscored.  He withdrew from Four Continents and had a disappointing showing at a Senior B last week.  While it’s hard to count him out, since he’s pulled through so many times in the past, I think this might be the year that he can’t rebound in time to be in top shape for Worlds.  He has the 4th best short program, 6th best free skate and 6th best total scores.

Other skaters looking to factor into the top 10 are European medalists Alexei Bychenko and Maxim Kovtun (who also has the 8th best short program score).  Nam Nguyen was 5th at this event last season, but hasn’t been able to have the same results this year.  He didn’t even qualify to compete here, but another Canadian skater turned down his spot in favor of Nguyen in hopes of Canada being able to earn three spots for next year’s Worlds.

With only two spots available for the Japanese men at this event, two top ten finishers are staying at home. Takahito Mura has the 8th best score of the season, while Daisuke Murakami currently holds the 10th best score of the season.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Yuzuru Hanyu

Silver: Javier Fernandez

Bronze: Patrick Chan

 

Bios of the competitors:

Denis Margalik, ARG: He finished 17th at Four Continents.  He won bronze at JGP Slovakia and placed 8th at JGP Spain.  His personal best is 193.44.  He is 18 years old.

Slavik Hayrapetyan, ARM: He finished 31st at Europeans.  His personal best is 164.03.  He is 20 years old.

Brendan Kerry, AUS: He finished 20th at Worlds last season.  He placed 19th at Four Continents.  He finished 8th at Skate America and 12th at NHK Trophy.  His personal best is 203.48.  He is 21 years old.

Jorik Hendrickx, BEL: He finished 9th at Europeans.  His personal best is 233.47.  He is 23 years old.

Patrick Chan, CAN: He is the reigning Four Continents Champion.  He won gold at Skate Canada and placed 5th at Trophee Eric Bompard to qualify for the Grand Prix Final were he finished 4th.  He is the 2014 Olympic Silver Medalist; 2011, 2012 and 2013 World Champion; 2009 and 2010 World silver medalist; 2009 and 2012 Four Continents Champion and 2007 World Junior silver medalist.  His personal best is 295.27.  He is 25 years old.

Nam Nguyen, CAN: He placed 5th at Worlds last season.  He placed 5th at Skate Canada and 7th at Rostelecom Cup.  He is the 2014 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 242.59.  He is 17 years old.

Boyang Jin, CHN: He is the reigning Four Continents Silver Medalist.  He won silver at Cup of China and silver at NHK Trophy to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he placed 5th.  He is the 2015 World Junior Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 289.83.  He is 18 years old.

Han Yan, CHN: He finished 10th at Worlds last season.  He is the reigning Four Continents Bronze Medalist.  He placed 4th at Skate America and won bronze at Cup of China.  He is the 2013 and 2015 Four Continents Bronze Medalist and 2012 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 271.55.  He is 20 years old.

Michal Brezina, CZE: He placed 15th at Worlds last season.  He placed 10th at Europeans.   He placed 7th at Skate Canada and won bronze at Rostelecom last season.  He is the 2013 European Bronze Medalist and 2009 World Junior Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 243.52.  He is 25 years old.

Chafik Besseghier, FRA: He placed 18th at Worlds last season.  He finished 10th at Trophee Eric Bompard and 9th at NHK Trophy.  His personal best is 224.19.  He is 26 years old.

Franz Streubel, GER: He finished 14th at Europeans.  His personal best is 196.17.  He is 24 years old.

Phillip Harris, GBR: He placed 18th at Europeans.  His personal best is 184.51.  He is 26 years old.

Alexei Bychenko, ISR: He placed 17th at Worlds last season.  He is the reigning European Silver Medalist.  He placed 12th at Skate America and 10th at Rostelecom Cup.  His personal best is 242.56.  He is 28 years old.

Ivan Righini, ITA: He placed 25th at Worlds last season.  He placed 6th at Europeans.  He finished 10th at Cup of China and 8th at Rostelcom Cup.  His personal best is 236.36.  He is 24 years old.

Yuzuru Hanyu, JPN: He is the reigning World Silver Medalist.  He won silver at Skate Canada and gold at NHK Trophy to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he won gold.  He is the 2014 Olympic Champion, 2014 World Champion, 2012 World Bronze Medalist, 2011 and 2013 Four Continents Silver Medalist and 2010 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 330.43.  He is 21 years old.

Shoma Uno, JPN: He placed 4th at Four Continents. He won silver at Skate America and gold at Trophee Eric Bompard to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he won bronze.  He is the 2015 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 276.79.  He is 18 years old.

Denis Ten, KAZ: He is the reigning World Bronze Medalist.  He placed 9th at Skate America and 4th at Trophee Eric Bompard.  He is the 2014 Olympic Bronze Medalist, 2013 World Silver Medalist and 2015 Four Continents Champion.  His personal best is 289.46.  He is 22 years old.

Deniss Vasiljevs, LAT: He finished 12th at Europeans and 8th at Junior Worlds.  He won silver at JGP Latvia and silver at JGP Poland.  His personal best is 214.43.  He is 16 years old.

Julian Zhi Jie Yee, MAS: He placed 15th at Four Continents.  He finished 7th at JGP Latvia and 4th at JGP Spain.  His personal best is 197.42.  He is 18 years old.

Michael Christian Martinez, PHI: He placed 21st at Worlds last season.  He finished 9th at Four Continents.  He placed 6th at Cup of China.  His personal best is 220.36.  He is 19 years old.

June Hyoung Lee, KOR: He placed 19th at Worlds last season.  He finished 16th at Four Continents.  He placed 12th at Skate Canada.  His personal best is 203.92.  He is 19 years old.

Mikhail Kolyada, RUS: He finished 5th at Europeans.  He placed 5th at Rostelecom Cup.  His personal best is 247.97.  He is 21 years old.

Maxim Kovtun, RUS: He placed 7th at Worlds last season and is the reigning European Bronze Medalist.  He won silver at Trophee Eric Bompard and placed 10th at NHK Trophy.  He is the 2015 European Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 247.37.  He is 20 years old.

Javier Fernandez, ESP: He is the reigning World and European Champion.  He won gold at Cup of China and gold at Rostelecom Cup to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he won silver.  He is the 2013 and 2014 World Bronze Medalist; and 2013, 2014 and 2015 European Champion.  His personal best is 302.77.  He is 24 years old.

Javier Raya, ESP: His personal best is 179.37.  He is 24 years old.

Ivan Pavlov, UKR: He placed 15th at Europeans.  He placed 8th at JGP Slovakia and won bronze at JGP Austria.  His personal best is 202.32.  He is 17 years old.

Max Aaron, USA: He placed 7th at Four Continents.  He won gold at Skate America and placed 7th at Trophee Eric Bompard.  His personal best is 258.95.  He is 24 years old.

Grant Hochstein, USA: He placed 8th at Four Continents.  He placed 4th at Cup of China and 4th at NHK Trophy.  His personal best is 235.63.  He is 25 years old.

Adam Rippon, USA: He placed 8th at Worlds last season.  He placed 4th at Skate Canada and 4th at Rostelecom Cup.  He is the 2010 Four Continents Champion and 2008 and 2009 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 248.63.  He is 26 years old.

Misha Ge, UZB: He finished 8th at Cup of China.  His personal best is 238.05.  He is 24 years old.

2016 Canadian Nationals Men’s Results

  1. Patrick Chan: 103.58 SP + 192.09 FP = 295.67
  2. Liam Firus: 78.87 SP + 158.33 FP = 237.20
  3. Kevin Reynolds: 77.65 SP + 158.53 FP = 236.18
  4. Nam Nguyen: 76.04 SP + 151.65 FP = 227.69
  5. Nicolas Nadeau: 75.22 SP + 151.34 FP = 226.56
  6. Keegan Messing: 77.20 SP + 144.30 FP = 221.50
  7. Elladj Balde: 69.02 SP + 140.99 FP = 210.01
  8. Bennet Toman: 67.90 SP + 139.99 FP = 207.89
  9. Roman Sadvosky: 64.17 SP + 140.41 FP = 204.59
  10. Anthony Kan: 58.18 SP + 119.30 FP = 177.48
  11. Christophe Belley: 58.17 SP + 117.60 FP = 175.77
  12. Shaquille Davis: 61.81 SP + 112.52 = 174.33
  13. Mitchell Gordon: 54.72 SP + 118.92 FP = 173.64
  14. Dustin Sheriff-Clayton: 54.29 SP + 114.47 FP = 168.76
  15. Laurent Guay: 54.69 SP + 110.68 FP = 165.37
  16. Jack Kermezian: 52.93 SP + 102.13 FP = 155.06
  17. Samuel Angers: 53.12 SP + 94.21 FP = 147.33
  18. Daniel-Olivier Boulanger-Trottier: 56.96 SP + 86.29 FP = 143.25

Rostelecom Cup Men’s Preview

With uncertainty still looming over scoring the results at Trophee Eric Bompard, we move ahead to the next event in the series.  Only two men have a chance at qualifying for the Final here while a trio of youngsters look to gain experience and further solidify their name on the international stage.

Javier Fernandez found himself in a different position this year, coming in as the World Champion and being the front runner at every event instead of the under dog.  He had very strong performances at Cup of China to start the season.  He received all Level 3s and 4s on his spins and steps in the short program and his only negative GOE was on his opening quad salchow.  His free skate seemed to fit him like a glove choreographically but he had a few minor jump issues.  He received full credit for all three quads in his program, but fell on the solo quad salchow in the second half.  He also doubled a lutz near the end of the program.  But his program components in both segments were very high and a good sign of things to come. He has the best short program, 3rd best free skate and 2nd best total scores of the season.  He needs a gold, silver or bronze medal to qualify for the Final.

Nam Nguyen placed 5th at Skate Canada, his worst finish on the series so far.  However, there was a lot of promise in his performance there.  He hit a quad toe + triple toe in the short program that earned positive GOEs, but his triple axel was flawed.  In his free skate, he landed two quads and two triple axels.  He received a Level 2 on his steps and one spin combination and his program components are lower than the top men, so he still has plenty of room for growth.

Mikhail Kolyada is making his Grand Prix debut here after some strong performances in the Challenger Series.  He won silver at Ondrej Nepela Trophy and bronze at the Ice Challenge.  He set new personal bests in all segments of competition at those two events.  He doesn’t have a total score that ranks among the top 10, as his best performances this season were at separate events.  He has the 10th best short program and 8th best free skate scores.

Adam Rippon finished 4th at Skate Canada, his best finish since 2013.  His quad lutz was downgraded in the short program, earning him just 3.90 points.  But everything else earned positive GOEs.  His program components seemed a bit low for a skater of his caliber, so there is still improvements to be made.  His quad lutz was downgraded again in his free skate.  It’s good to see him putting it out so early in the season and hopefully gaining some traction on the jump as it can be a huge point getter.  His triple axel also gave him some trouble in the free skate.  He can put himself in the running for the Final with a gold medal.

Adian Pitkeev finished 6th at Skate America.  He landed a quad toe in his short program and two in his free skate, but his triple axel wasn’t there for the free program.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Javier Fernandez

Silver: Adam Rippon

Bronze: Nam Nguyen

 

Bios of the competitors:

Nam Nguyen, CAN: He placed 5th at Worlds and 11th at Four Continents.  He placed 5th at Skate Canada.  He is the 2014 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 242.59.  He is 17 years old.

Peter Liebers, GER:  He placed 29th at Worlds and 6th at Europeans.  His personal best is 239.87.  He is 27 years old.

Alexei Bychenko, ISR: He placed 17th at Worlds and 4th at Europeans.  He placed 12th at Skate America.  His personal best is 220.22.  He is 27 years old.

Ivan Righini, ITA: He placed 25th at Worlds and 8th at Europeans.  He finished 10th at Cup of China.  His personal best is 213.09.  He is 24 years old.

Takahiko Kozuka, JPN:  He placed 12th at Worlds.  He finished 8th at Skate Canada and 6th at Rostelecom Cup last season.  He is the 2011 World Silver Medalist, 2009 Four Continents Bronze Medalist and 2006 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 258.41.  He is 26 years old.

Mikhail Kolyada, RUS: This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 239.77.  He is 20 years old.

Adian Pitkeev, RUS: He placed 7th at Europeans and 5th at Junior Worlds.  He placed 6th at Skate America.  He is the 2014 World Junior Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 230.75.  He is 17 years old.

Sergei Voronov, RUS: He placed 13th at Worlds and is the reigning European Bronze Medalist.  He placed 5th at Cup of China.  He is the 2014 European Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 252.55.  He is 28 years old.

Javier Fernandez, ESP: He is the reigning World and European Champion.  He won gold at Cup of China.  He is the 2013 and 2014 World Bronze Medalist and 2013 and 2014 European Champion.  His personal best is 275.93.  He is 24 years old.

Ross Miner, USA: He placed 7th at NHK Trophy last season.  He placed 7th at Skate America.  He is the 2012 Four Continents Bronze Medalist.  His personal best is 235.37.  He is 24 years old.

Adam Rippon, USA: He placed 8th at Worlds and 10th at Four Continents.  He placed 4th at Skate Canada.  He is the 2010 Four Continents Champion and 2008 and 2009 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 241.24.  He is 26 years old.

Skate Canada Men’s Results

Short Program

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CH IN Ded.
StN.
1 Daisuke MURAKAMI JPN 80.88 42.17 38.71 7.96 7.39 7.68 7.89 7.79 0.00 #7
2 Patrick CHAN CAN 80.81 37.43 44.38 8.96 8.82 8.50 9.14 8.96 1.00 #5
3 Adam RIPPON USA 80.36 41.56 39.80 8.04 7.43 7.93 8.11 8.29 1.00 #8
4 Nam NGUYEN CAN 76.10 40.27 36.83 7.36 7.04 7.50 7.54 7.39 1.00 #10
5 Michal BREZINA CZE 75.46 37.71 38.75 8.04 7.50 7.50 8.00 7.71 1.00 #11
6 Yuzuru HANYU JPN 73.25 28.43 44.82 9.00 8.68 8.79 9.21 9.14 0.00 #12
7 Alexander PETROV RUS 71.44 35.64 35.80 7.25 6.79 7.29 7.29 7.18 0.00 #9
8 Jin Seo KIM KOR 68.64 34.39 34.25 6.86 6.43 6.89 7.00 7.07 0.00 #4
9 Sei KAWAHARA JPN 67.36 35.42 31.94 6.54 6.11 6.43 6.54 6.32 0.00 #2
10 Keegan MESSING CAN 67.13 34.42 32.71 6.61 6.39 6.54 6.71 6.46 0.00 #1
11 Timothy DOLENSKY USA 62.46 29.75 33.71 6.89 6.54 6.36 6.96 6.96 1.00 #3
12 June Hyoung LEE KOR 47.19 18.51 30.68 6.18 5.93 5.82 6.46 6.29 2.00 #6

Free Skate

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CH IN Ded.
StN.
1 Patrick CHAN CAN 190.33 95.17 95.16 9.57 9.29 9.61 9.50 9.61 0.00 #11
2 Yuzuru HANYU JPN 186.29 98.35 88.94 8.93 8.50 8.86 9.14 9.04 1.00 #7
3 Daisuke MURAKAMI JPN 171.37 89.37 82.00 8.36 7.71 8.54 8.25 8.14 0.00 #12
4 Nam NGUYEN CAN 162.72 86.86 75.86 7.57 7.32 7.82 7.68 7.54 0.00 #9
5 Adam RIPPON USA 159.33 80.47 80.86 8.00 7.75 7.96 8.29 8.43 2.00 #10
6 Timothy DOLENSKY USA 156.60 83.98 72.62 7.39 6.89 7.39 7.46 7.18 0.00 #2
7 Alexander PETROV RUS 149.58 77.80 72.78 7.39 6.96 7.54 7.36 7.14 1.00 #6
8 Michal BREZINA CZE 143.12 69.06 77.06 7.89 7.46 7.43 8.07 7.68 3.00 #8
9 Sei KAWAHARA JPN 127.85 65.43 62.42 6.64 5.96 6.21 6.36 6.04 0.00 #4
10 Jin Seo KIM KOR 127.20 57.84 70.36 6.93 6.82 6.93 7.32 7.18 1.00 #5
11 Keegan MESSING CAN 115.12 52.54 64.58 6.68 6.29 6.29 6.57 6.46 2.00 #3
12 June Hyoung LEE KOR 104.86 51.78 55.08 5.86 5.11 5.36 5.71 5.50 2.00 #1

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Patrick CHAN
CAN
271.14 2 1
2 Yuzuru HANYU
JPN
259.54 6 2
3 Daisuke MURAKAMI
JPN
252.25 1 3
4 Adam RIPPON
USA
239.69 3 5
5 Nam NGUYEN
CAN
238.82 4 4
6 Alexander PETROV
RUS
221.02 7 7
7 Timothy DOLENSKY
USA
219.06 11 6
8 Michal BREZINA
CZE
218.58 5 8
9 Jin Seo KIM
KOR
195.84 8 10
10 Sei KAWAHARA
JPN
195.21 9 9
11 Keegan MESSING
CAN
182.25 10 11
12 June Hyoung LEE
KOR
152.05 12 12

Skate Canada Men’s Preview

Patrick Chan is making his return to competition after taking the entire last season off.  And unlike many of the other men at this competition, he hasn’t competed yet this season.  He was the uncontested favorite going in to the 2014 Olympics but a rough season left him with the silver medal.  He skipped Worlds and took a season off to decide if he wanted to continue competing or retire.  His artistry is unparalleled and he has gorgeous quads but he often made small errors like falling on foot work.  He has the top free skate and total scores ever recorded under IJS.

Yuzuru Hanyu beat out Chan for the gold medal at the 2014 Games.  He struggled at the beginning of the season, including not medaling at one of his Grand Prix events but he rebounded by winning the Grand Prix Final.  He narrowly missed out on defending his World title last season.  He has a lot of the same qualities as Patrick Chan with the addition of impressive flexibility.  He has the top short program score ever recorded under IJS.

Nam Nguyen trains alongside Hanyu and had an impressive full senior season.  He won a bronze medal in his first Grand Prix assignment and finished 5th at Worlds.   At only 17 years old he has a bright future ahead of him and still has lots of room to grow and add to his jumping repertoire.  He started off his season with a silver medal at the Skate Canada Autumn Classic where he finished behind Hanyu.

Daisuke Murakami surprised everyone by winning a gold medal at NHK Trophy last season, his first Grand Prix assignment since 2011.  He couldn’t hold on to that momentum, however, and finished 7th at Japanese nationals and placed 4th at Four Continents.

Michal Brezina has been very hot and cold the past few seasons.  He won a bronze medal at Rostelecom Cup but finished a distant 15th at Worlds, 60 points out of first place.  His performances last season were his worst ever at a World Championships and his worst Europeans since 2011.  He also had his worst ever finish on the Grand Prix at Skate Canada last year.  He has the capability to land on the podium but it will depend on which Brezina shows up to compete.  He has a lot of performances under his belt already this season, winning silver at Lombardia Trophy, placing 6th at Nebelhorn Trophy, 5th at Finlandia Trophy and 4th at Cup of Nice.

 

My podium predictions:

Gold: Yuzuru Hanyu

Silver: Patrick Chan

Bronze: Nam Nguyen

 

Bios of the competitors:

Patrick Chan, CAN: He is the 2014 Olympic Silver Medalist; 2011, 2012 and 2013 World Champion; 2009 and 2010 World silver medalist; 2009 and 2012 Four Continents Champion and 2007 World Junior silver medalist.  His personal best is 295.27.  He is 24 years old.

Keegan Messing, CAN: This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 197.03.  He is 23 years old.

Nam Nguyen, CAN: He placed 5th at Worlds and 11th at Four Continents.  He won bronze at Skate America and placed 4th at Cup of China.  He is the 2014 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 242.59.  He is 17 years old.

Michal Brezina, CZE: He placed 15th at Worlds and 5th at Europeans.   He placed 7th at Skate Canada and won bronze at Rostelecom last season.  He is the 2013 European Bronze Medalist and 2009 World Junior Silver Medalist.  His personal best is 243.52.  He is 25 years old.

Yuzuru Hanyu, JPN: He is the reigning World Silver Medalist.  He won silver at Cup of China and placed 4th at NHK Trophy last season to qualify for the Grand Prix Final where he won gold.  He is the 2014 Olympic Champion, 2014 World Champion, 2012 World Bronze Medalist, 2011 and 2013 Four Continents Silver Medalist and 2010 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 293.25.  He is 20 years old.

Sei Kawahara, JPN: He won bronze at JGP Czech Republic and placed 5th at JGP Germany last season.  This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 189.50.  He is 19 years old.

Daisuke Murakami, JPN: He placed 4th at Four Continents.  He won gold at NHK Trophy last season.  His personal best is 256.47.  He is 24 years old.

Jin Seo Kim, KOR: He finished 15th at Four Continents and 9th at Junior Worlds.  He placed 9th at Cup of China and 9th at NHK Trophy last season.  His personal best is 207.34.  He is 18 years old.

June Hyoung Lee, KOR: He placed 19th at Worlds and 18th at Four Continents.  He won gold at JGP France and bronze at JGP Croatia last season to qualify for the Junior Grand Prix Final where he placed 6th.  This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 203.92.  He is 19 years old.

Alexander Petrov, RUS: He placed 6th at Junior Worlds.  He won silver at JGP Slovenia and gold at JGP Estonia last season to qualify for the Junior Grand Prix Final where he won bronze.  This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 231.53.  He is 16 years old.

Timothy Dolensky, USA: This is his Grand Prix debut.  His personal best is 210.55.  He is 23 years old.

Adam Rippon, USA: He placed 8th at Worlds and 10th at Four Continents.  He placed 10th at Skate Canada and 5th at Trophee Eric Bompard last season.  He is the 2010 Four Continents Champion and 2008 and 2009 World Junior Champion.  His personal best is 241.24.  He is 25 years old.

World Championships Men’s Free Skate Results

Free Skate

Pl. Name Nation TSS
=
TES
+
PCS
+
SS TR PE CH IN Ded.
StN.
1 Denis TEN KAZ 181.83 93.47 88.36 8.71 8.68 8.79 8.96 9.04 0.00 #20
2 Javier FERNANDEZ ESP 181.16 93.10 89.06 8.71 8.71 8.93 9.07 9.11 1.00 #22
3 Yuzuru HANYU JPN 175.88 88.24 88.64 8.93 8.71 8.68 9.04 8.96 1.00 #21
4 Nam NGUYEN CAN 164.86 88.28 76.58 7.43 7.36 7.82 7.75 7.93 0.00 #13
5 Jason BROWN USA 163.97 79.37 84.60 8.29 8.29 8.57 8.54 8.61 0.00 #24
6 Maxim KOVTUN RUS 159.88 83.32 77.56 8.00 7.54 7.64 7.89 7.71 1.00 #10
7 Misha GE UZB 156.37 78.73 77.64 7.75 7.43 7.93 7.75 7.96 0.00 #17
8 Adam RIPPON USA 154.57 74.93 79.64 8.11 7.68 7.96 7.86 8.21 0.00 #18
9 Takahiko KOZUKA JPN 152.54 76.82 76.72 8.00 7.54 7.54 7.64 7.64 1.00 #1
10 Joshua FARRIS USA 149.52 72.60 77.92 7.71 7.46 7.79 7.86 8.14 1.00 #9
11 Florent AMODIO FRA 148.78 70.76 78.02 7.93 7.25 8.00 7.79 8.04 0.00 #16
12 Takahito MURA JPN 146.81 73.03 73.78 7.82 6.93 7.43 7.46 7.25 0.00 #2
13 Han YAN CHN 144.70 67.70 80.00 8.14 7.86 7.75 8.18 8.07 3.00 #23
14 Ronald LAM HKG 141.70 75.76 65.94 6.64 6.50 6.61 6.61 6.61 0.00 #7
15 Michal BREZINA CZE 136.99 57.91 79.08 8.00 7.68 7.79 7.96 8.11 0.00 #14
16 Alexei BYCHENKO ISR 134.28 67.48 67.80 6.86 6.54 6.82 6.82 6.86 1.00 #15
17 Sergei VORONOV RUS 133.71 55.41 78.30 8.04 7.54 7.82 7.71 8.04 0.00 #19
18 June Hyoung LEE KOR 133.01 67.15 65.86 6.61 6.32 6.64 6.68 6.68 0.00 #3
19 Chafik BESSEGHIER FRA 129.59 64.31 65.28 6.68 6.21 6.50 6.54 6.71 0.00 #12
20 Michael Christian MARTINEZ PHI 125.35 60.93 64.42 6.39 6.25 6.57 6.39 6.61 0.00 #4
21 Brendan KERRY AUS 124.21 62.99 62.22 6.46 6.07 6.11 6.29 6.18 1.00 #8
22 Jeremy TEN CAN 111.51 48.45 67.06 7.00 6.64 6.25 6.82 6.82 4.00 #11
23 Alexander MAJOROV SWE 109.02 48.00 62.02 6.54 6.11 5.82 6.29 6.25 1.00 #5
24 Yaroslav PANIOT UKR 105.43 49.43 57.00 6.04 5.39 5.64 5.79 5.64 1.00 #6

Total

FPl. Name Nation Points SP FS
1 Javier FERNANDEZ
ESP
273.90 2 2
2 Yuzuru HANYU
JPN
271.08 1 3
3 Denis TEN
KAZ
267.72 3 1
4 Jason BROWN
USA
248.29 6 5
5 Nam NGUYEN
CAN
242.59 9 4
6 Misha GE
UZB
234.89 8 7
7 Maxim KOVTUN
RUS
230.70 16 6
8 Adam RIPPON
USA
229.71 11 8
9 Florent AMODIO
FRA
229.62 7 11
10 Han YAN
CHN
229.15 5 13
11 Joshua FARRIS
USA
223.04 13 10
12 Takahiko KOZUKA
JPN
222.69 19 9
13 Sergei VORONOV
RUS
218.41 4 17
14 Ronald LAM
HKG
214.36 14 14
15 Michal BREZINA
CZE
213.83 10 15
16 Takahito MURA
JPN
211.74 23 12
17 Alexei BYCHENKO
ISR
209.26 12 16
18 Chafik BESSEGHIER
FRA
199.86 18 19
19 June Hyoung LEE
KOR
197.52 24 18
20 Brendan KERRY
AUS
194.57 17 21
21 Michael Christian MARTINEZ
PHI
192.38 22 20
22 Jeremy TEN
CAN
183.79 15 22
23 Alexander MAJOROV
SWE
176.55 21 23
24 Yaroslav PANIOT
UKR
174.52 20 24
Ivan RIGHINI
ITA
FNR 25
Nan SONG
CHN
FNR 26
Petr COUFAL
CZE
FNR 27
Pavel IGNATENKO
BLR
FNR 28
Peter LIEBERS
GER
FNR 29
Stephane WALKER
SUI
FNR 30