View Full Version : Hersh Article

January 21st, 2000, 04:15 AM
<A HREF=http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/main/article/0,2669,SAV-0001210134,FF.html >http://www.chicagotribune.com/sports/main/article/0,2669,SAV-0001210134,FF.html </A> Comments???

January 21st, 2000, 04:42 AM
I'm so tired of the media. They really know how to hit below the belt. I hope michelle doesn't feel this way about herself.

January 21st, 2000, 05:11 AM
Ouch! Mr. "Harsh" has been very unkind to Michelle on many occasions. He is obviously not a fan of hers, but this sort of review is uncalled for. I give it (and him) a thumbs down!

January 21st, 2000, 05:31 AM
You know, you cant do triple-triple combinations forever!!! You are going to end up with waist injury like TARA LIPINSKI. Other than that, I hope Michelle takes it easy on herself and schedules properly to prepare for 2002. I really dont care right now if she stumbles, falls, trips or whatever. I, for one, just wants her to be ready for 2002. By the way, Irina did not deserve 6.0s for landing those triple jumps. She didnt execute them with a perfect mark. She landed standing still. I feel sorry for Michelle 'cause she happens to be American and she happens to be Asian so they are less likely to forgive her for any mistakes. Just look at '95 worlds or whatever,,, if technical difficulty was the standard, Bobek should have never gotten Bronze. Anyway, Irina cant do triple-triples forever, so Michelle just needs to keep on believing in herself.

January 21st, 2000, 06:33 AM
Okay, you lost me here, inceangelic: First of all, Tara did not injure herself doing triple triples, She injured herself once surfing I think, and had a slight back problem later in the year. From what I recall, it wasn't due to triple triples, but some people speculated if the second injury wasn't because of some improper warming up on her part. Regardless, when you practice tough jumps, you do take a risk of some rough falls. The triple axel, particularly for it's entrance, is something that is easy to hurt yourself doing. But part of a sport like this is risk-taking, and I'm sure Michelle knows that. That's exactly what Irina did during the GPF-- she took a chance and she came out on top! As for Irina's 6.0, you can't forget that marks are placeholders, not indications of perfection all the time. I didn't think she was perfect myself, but if the judge gave Michelle a 5.8, the might have thought Irina was worth 2 tenth's higher than Michelle, so they gave her a 6.0 It's not all cut-and-dry as perfection. I don't think Michelle is judged harder because she is American or she is Asian, I really don't. SHe never would have done as well has she has already. you say that in 1995, if techincal merit was the standard,but the thing is, it was only ONE of the standards. I believe that MIchelle should have been on the podium, but not as the winner. Imagine if she had-- she would have not pushed herself to perform those magnificent programs she did the next year! You're right-Irina may not be able to perform the triple/triples forever. But somebody will. If it's not Irina, it may be Sarah. If it's not Sarah, it may be Naomi. If it's not Naomi, it may be Sasha, and if it's not Sasha, it may be someone we haven't even heard of! Michelle needs them for herself, because the judges have sent the message to Michelle mroe than once--- she needs technical difficulty! She needs to wow the judges with something! Because it has been 4 years since Michelle has upped her difficulty... and everyone else around her has been doing that for years. -Heather <A HREF=http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Lot/3143/michelle.html>http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Lot/3143/michelle.html</A>

January 21st, 2000, 06:37 AM
iceangelic ITA.

January 21st, 2000, 06:45 AM
If the press chooses to take every instance that Michelle does not win a gold as an occasion to rush forward with stories about her failing abilities and the end of her career, I will certainly not be paying attention to them.

January 21st, 2000, 06:45 AM
Well said Heather!!! You just summed up what I was thinking perfectly. Thanks!! Now I don't have to say anything hehe ;o)

January 21st, 2000, 06:49 AM
That surfing injury hasn't been Tara's most damaging injury. Tara also had a hip injury last year due to the strain from triples.

January 21st, 2000, 06:50 AM
I stand by my viewpoint. Take a good look at Maria B. Anyway, I hope Michelle loses all her competitions so people will be so accustomed to it her losing and then SMACK everyone with a gold medal performance at 2002.

January 21st, 2000, 07:51 AM
I second SJB's comment. Hersh didn't say anything inaccurate, but the tone was anit-Kwan. He could have said something positive about Michelle, like how she takes on new challenges, gets consistently high technical marks (unlike many competitors) and is a hugely artistic skater.

January 21st, 2000, 08:43 AM
Grrr ... Carol Heiss Jenkin's Michael Jordan comment really bugged me! "If Michael Jordan continually had not put the ball in the basket, we would not have said, `Look at how graceful he is running down the court."' Of course not, Carol! Basketball isn't about grace. Figure skating, however, at least partially *is.* ::sigh:: Amelia

January 21st, 2000, 09:13 AM
That bugged me too. I guess I was surprised she said that.

January 21st, 2000, 10:44 AM
IMO, MK would have won had she done the 3t/3t combo and the 3loop. I love Irina's performance, but, to me, there is still something somewhat awkward about here skating. I've never been able to figure out what, thought. Also, even though she did land two triple/triple combos, they weren't exactly perfect. She almost came to a complete stop after one of them. I'm not putting down Irina. I am a fan of hers. I just don't like that article. That's all.

January 21st, 2000, 11:00 AM
It has been a while since she upgraded them. I know they're still technically superior, and doing 7 triples in a long program is very demanding on a skater. But I don't think it had anything to do with Irena's jumps though, Michelle made mistakes, she had only 5 triples compared to Irena who had 7 triples. I think if Michelle skated clean with 7 triples, and the 3/3, she would have won, even it's an easier combo! But I do agree with Heather that Michelle needs triple/triple for herself, because there's a demand on them. And the judges are sending these signals to Michelle, it reflects on her technical marks in Ariane, GPF. I think they weren't generous marks...but I think they weren't "unfair". Yes the judges were more generous on Irena...especially the French judge. My point is that Michelle's gonna need technical upgrades in her long programs (but I think she's been practicing harder combos, like the 3lutz/3toe, 3flip/2toe, so don't worry fans!)

January 21st, 2000, 11:11 AM
I suggest that you all send him an e-mail re: his article. I just did....I am furious...the nerve...worst nightmare? No, perhaps the death of her dear friend Harris Collins was a worse nightmare. As far as Carol Heiss, obviously if you coach a jumper with no artistry, you would feel that way. I let him have it and cited many points about MK and the competition...I wish I could link it, but I don't know how. Scroll down to the list of staff writers...you will see his name click on....

January 21st, 2000, 11:33 AM
Hersh didn't really say anything in his article that we (on the Spoilers board under the "Upping the Ante" thread) haven't said ourselves. I tend to disagree with his impression of how deep Slutskaya's impact was and how good and mature her presentation is. But having said that, Hersh just reiterated what a lot of us have been saying for months. In the aforementioned thread I think I even called Irina "the new Tara". It doesn't surprise me that Hersh has come down hard on Michelle on this matter. He's been hard on her before, but he's also written some very nice things about Michelle. The main concern here is that Michelle doesn't pressure herself by trying to do too much in too short a time. So she lost the Grand Prix final. Big deal. It's not nationals and it's not Worlds. She's been served notice on upping her technical prowess just as she served notice on others 4 years ago with her powerful newfound presentation and style. It just really is true that what goes around comes around.

January 21st, 2000, 11:35 AM
ITA about Carol Heiss ,Kwanette. That's the first thing I thought of. She coaches Tim Geobel. Don't worry, you know as soon as Michelle has another great performance the media will be "ALL OVER IT"!!!! She'll be the unbeatable(which is ridiculous), unstoppable champ, she'll be the greatest thing ever and instantly "MAGMIFICENT", she'll be the "OVERWELMING FAVORITE" in EVERY SINGLE COMPETITION, until she wins silver again. Then, of course whe'll be "washed up" again. Doesn't it seem that way? It's a stupid article.

January 21st, 2000, 11:54 AM
I finally figure it out why Mr. Hersh is harsh on Michelle. My sources told me that Mr. Hersh bet about 1 million dollars on Michelle taking the Olympic Gold in 98, thinking the odds Michelle will bring home the silver. Guess what, he lost and his broke. Ever since the great 98 lost , he haven't forgiving her for bringing home the silver medal and making him a poor man.

January 21st, 2000, 12:04 PM
Oh boy! So that's why he's so harsh on her? But who's fault was it really? Nobody told him to gamble on the results anyway. She didn't lose the million bucks for him, he lost it himself, out of his stupidity betting on something like that.

January 21st, 2000, 12:04 PM
Who *cares* what Phil Hersh thinks or writes? His opinion is worth exactly nothing. For that matter, who cares what Carol Heiss Jenkins thinks, either? The only opinions that matter are the 9 judges in question.

January 21st, 2000, 12:14 PM
Just like Rene says the commentators and media are ready to hand over medals to MK until she looses once and then she is chopped liver. ESPN finally has an FS section and before the GPFinal they were saying Maria was a shoo-in (because she is world champion. It bugs me when people do that even with Michelle - like the time Peggy said Michelle would have to leave the building to loose :-{ HARUMPH!! The thing is the more they do that the more superstitious I get and am starting to wonder if they are jinxing MK! Shallah 'Tempt not the Skate Gods' K.

January 21st, 2000, 12:28 PM
Rene, ITA with your comments! The media is so fickle. I actually was not that upset with what Phil Hersh wrote. This article does not even compare IMO to that ridiculous "SECOND-RATE" article he wrote after 99' Worlds. But Carol Heiss Jenkins "Jordan" comment was totally ridiculous.

January 21st, 2000, 01:32 PM
I'm sorry, but I don't see anything terrible in that article. As others have said, he's just written what *we* have all said here. I'm actually surprised that it took this long for someone to mention Irina basically as the "threat" (not the best word to use though) that Tara was, since the media always loves to mention the two together. I don't know why you think he is so "anti-Michelle", I know he's written many nice things about Michelle. I wish he wrote for my local paper because at least I'd get skating coverage. And, Michelle has to have a triple/triple in competition, that's all there is to it. Things progress in life, especially sports. the champion that Michelle is, she will progress with it. About Carol's comment. Sorry, but what's so terrible about it. It's true, isn't it? If MJ scored 5 points a game, you wouldn't be noticing his grace, you would be commenting on how his athletic isn't up to par with others in his sport. It's the same with Michelle. We all know that she's athletic. I always find it funny that when she came up, she was noticed because of her athleticism, and she ended up winning '96 Worlds because of her athleticism. But as she became the best artistic skater, people started forgetting that she was still landing those triples. Now because others are able to do much harder tricks, her athleticism is being brought up again...but in a negative way. Not saying that she is far behind anyone else, but she needs to up the technical because the Olympics are only 2 years away. Next season is very important...the woman that wins worlds the year before the Olympics has won the Olympics I forget how many times in a row. Why would you be upset with Carol over this one comment? She's said before that Michelle is one of the 3 best US skaters in history, so I don't think she's saying anything against Michelle. And she was graceful when she skated. So what if she coaches Tim? He's coming up with his artistry now. It's different in men's skating with artistry...I don't think you can use that as a comparison. I don't know if Michelle would have won if she had done the program cleanly, because the program itself also lacked her spark. Irina was just so on. Would that program have beaten RV executed perfectly? That I don't know, and we obviously will never know. We'll see what happens at Worlds with RV and Carmen. Shallah-I was LOL when I saw that...how it said there wouldn't be anything to stop Maria. I really hate when Michelle is always annointed the winner before the competition. I'm glad she won't have this pressure at Worlds. And, think about it. When was the last time she was a shoe-in to win a competition? 1998 Nationals...enough said. ;-)

January 21st, 2000, 01:44 PM
Michael Jordan scores....there aren't two categories for that score. yes, MK must up the ante. We all agree with that....If she can't, should she turn pro? She could be a Dorothy Hamill who is essentially jumpless, and yet wows people with edges and positions.And again, I suppose, Heiss' comments rubbed me the wrong way because of Tim Goebbel.

January 21st, 2000, 01:53 PM
I agree that MK needs to up the ante, but grace/presentaion/artistry is judged in skating. You cannot compare basketball and figure skating. They are two totally different sports. Obviously being graceful/artistic has nothing to do with basketball. It certainly has alot to do with figure skating.

January 21st, 2000, 02:02 PM
I wonder if grace, artistry and presentation are being judged anymore. I also wonder if technique is judged beyond jumps. it makes me sad to see that the sport is taking a turn that I personally do not like. I remember when Scott Hamilton said about Michelle that that is what the judges were looking for in ladies skating. Has all of that changed in two years?

January 21st, 2000, 02:08 PM
I don't think there has been a change really. There has to be a balance between technical merit and presentation. I think MK has the presentation side pretty much covered. Now MK needs to work on the technical side.

January 21st, 2000, 02:23 PM
but it seems that Michelle is the only one who is expected to have it...Please the men in the world rankings certainly don't....for the most part.....and most of the women don't either....The thread on where do these elements belong is a good one.....I don't think the judges even know........

January 21st, 2000, 02:27 PM
kwanette, ITA! It seems MK is held to a TOTALLY different standard than ALL of the other ladies.

January 21st, 2000, 02:31 PM
Can't remember who suggested that if Michelle can't up the technical ante, she should go pro, but there are two things I'd like to point out. (1) Even if Michelle never does another 3-3 combo besides the 3t-3t, or even doesn't do the 3t-3t regularly, she's *still* going to end up winning a number of competitions, perhaps even a majority; and (2) Since when is this just about winning and gold medals? If you don't win, there's no point, so you shouldn't bother to compete? Should Michelle have withdrawn from the 99 worlds after the SP because there was no realistic way she was going to win, and she should have cut her losses? This obsession with winning is ridiculous. Even if Michelle didn't win another gold medal for the rest of her eligible career, it wouldn't change the fact that she's a beautiful, elegant, lovely skater with many unique gifts and talents, who touches our hearts and stirs our souls.

January 21st, 2000, 02:31 PM
Mr. Hersh must not be looking at the same scores as I, and/or is missing the point that each number is a placeholder with the absolute amount not engraved in stone. First, I would disregard the French and Russian judges. Their total point spreads were way out of line with the other five, two of whom had them .2 apart and the other three only .1 apart. That doesn't look like much, considering the following: 1. Irina had two 3/3's, Michelle none. 2. Irina had 7 triples, all clean, while Michelle had 5 clean triples, one two-footed, one doubled. 3. Michelle seemed to lack some spark in the first half of the program, and was mistimed with the music toward the end. I would expect this to hurt her presentation mark a bit. It appears that most of the judges were giving Michelle ample credit for what she did best despite an off day, and that she might have been able to win it, or at least hold it to a 4/3 split decision, by doing a 3toe/3toe and doing her best in everything else. Keith

Ice Butterfly
January 21st, 2000, 02:44 PM
Oh my, this is all so funny! It's a good thing Michelle never reads any articles. If so, she would have been "washed up" years ago. If we believed everything the press said, we would all be in mental institutions. I'm not worried, I'm waiting for Michelle to set the record straight - and I'm sure she will do this the next time she takes the ice.

January 21st, 2000, 02:51 PM
Michelle was not the only ladies skater who didn't finish first at GPF, including the reigning world champion. Why is Michelle the only one expected to be perfect everytime? If they think she so far behind everyone in technical ability, then why aren't they talking about how well she did to finish second, instead of how poorly she did not to finish first?

January 21st, 2000, 03:09 PM
How come Michelle is the only one being criticized for her finish at the GPF? If you ask me, I think it is worse when the reigning world champion, who is always boasting that she is a better skater than her competitors, got "only" 3rd place. How come there's no article calling her "third rate", or anyone harping on her lack of hard combinations? Only place I ever see it is here, and I don't think it's because we're making it up. I don't think Michelle's skating career is dead either. No matter how you slice it, she did win 2/3 of the competition. [9 Lives] I hope Hersh got himself a competent editor that doesn't cut important parts of articles out. But maybe he just can't afford any better than that since he is apparently out of a million bucks. [/9 Lives]

January 21st, 2000, 04:55 PM
Hey hey...for a comparsion of MK and Jordan...just read the back of MK's 1st autobiography (the hard cover 1)!!! :-)

January 21st, 2000, 06:30 PM
Michelle seems to have set a standard for a "Michelle" performance. It seems she is judged against what Michelle can do instead of what others can/did do. ITA, she is held to a much higher standard than anyone else! She has been for awhile now. I have to tell you, ever since we've had the *personal* threads, I've been wondering how many of the school teachers must be shaking their heads at my bad grammer, spelling mistakes, run on sentences, dangling this or that and many other horrors I have commited to MKF! YIKES!!!!!!!!!! Please ignore my many crimes against the English language! I think I'm the only one here who didn't or isn't going to college.

January 21st, 2000, 07:43 PM
Let me get this straight, Winter....according to someone you know, Phil Hersh bet a million bucks on Michelle at the Olympics? I find that incredibly hard to believe. First of all, the man is a professional journalist. If this were true, I think we'd have all heard about it a long time ago. It's been nearly 2 years. Secondly, I think Phil Hersh, for the most part, has a very good reputation as a reporter and columnist. Thirdly, if this is true, where did he get the million bucks from? I'm assuming he didn't borrow it because he's still living. I'm sure he makes a fine living from his syndicated column, but enough to waste on a million dollar bet on an ICE SKATER? If he did make such an idiotic bet....does anyone have his phone number? I understand the the World Curling Championships are coming up shortly. I just want to find out who he's betting for and then bet on the other team. There's a pretty good chance I could win a nice chunk of change off Phil.

January 21st, 2000, 08:06 PM
Hey what's up with Heiss? When Michelle is winning she supports her, praising her artistry saying how that is the epitomy of skating etc....then when she loses Heiss turns around and says how her lacking in outstanding jump ability is the reason b/c that is the important aspect of skating. Why doesn't she pick a side and stick to it.

January 21st, 2000, 09:08 PM
First of all...this article seems way too one sided. But the only part I found really funny was this: "It was the Russian version of Tara Lipinski as a woman." I know he mean's that Lipinski was a girl, but if you don't really think about it or don't know who Lipinski was, you would think Lipinski was a man. HAHA... BTW, Heather, you were right, Tara didn't injure herself doing a triple-triple cause she hasn't done any since the Olympics, but she DID injure herself on a double axel.

January 21st, 2000, 09:43 PM
It is a joke, isn't it? Winter, right? Typical Mr. "Harsh" article ... after Olympics, after 99' World ... I am not surprised at all except that it took him such a long time this time.

January 21st, 2000, 09:47 PM
I am LOL at the very first sentence "Kwan's worst nightmare ..."

January 21st, 2000, 11:29 PM
amidst these posts, my thoughts can best be expressed through those of Kwanette. I like your thinking. =)

January 21st, 2000, 11:55 PM
Here's my thoughts. Michelle is a fantastic skater and has already proven that, not by winning, but by skating. Hersh's article was a little harsh, but on the whole true. But even if Michelle is never able to raise the difficulty (because of school or whatever) she should always do what makes her happy. If competing makes her happy, than more power to her. She knows what she has to do probably better than any of us. We should trust that she'll make the right decision for her life and amateur career.

January 22nd, 2000, 02:02 AM
Now that I've seen his response to kwanette's e-mail about his article, I know just where he stands on Kwan, and it only partly relates to the lack of 3/3s. He's not a fan of her skating, obviously.

January 22nd, 2000, 03:12 AM
I have to apologize to all. When I first read this thread I thought that maybe some MK fans were just overreacting to a harmless article (I felt this way about the Sarah Hughes article that got everyone in such an uproar). But after reading the article, I have to say I totally agree with ALL OF YOU. Is this guy living in his own little alternate universe? I laughed so much at the article and this thread my sides hurt. I don't know the direct quote, but did he actually say that even if MK skated perfectly with a triple-triple she couldn't beat Irina? Name the time and place, dude. Irina is awesome, and her triple-triples were amazing (though they came to a dead halt... this girl is not the clean jumper that Tara is, if he wants to compare Irina to her). Anyway, the fact that Irina can do these combinations makes her now just an equal threat to win a competition as Michelle is. Not a superior one. Besides, I have some doubts about whether she can pull this off on a regular basis. I hope she does, I just don't think it's likely. When Hersh said Michelle in her current version probably couldn't beat Irina, that had to give me the best chortle. Michelle in any vintage (choose your favorite year here) is capable of beating Irina. The difference is that Irina is now also capable of beating her. So what? Let the games begin.... TripleLutz, I have to laugh at your interpretation of his comment about Irina being the Russian version of Tara Lipinski as a woman. I hadn't thought of it that way, but now that you mention it, it does sound even funnier! I would really like to know how Mr. Hearse came across such personal information as to what Michelle's worst nightmare is....

January 22nd, 2000, 03:59 AM
Yes, there is always the entitled opinion.If in fact, Michelle has not progressed technically since 95, isn't he, in fact, saying that technique is only about jumping? If so, fine, that would appear to be the direction that the sport is taken...give the gold to Tim Goebel now.Where then does a 1. Change of edge spral belong? 2. An Ina Bauer 3. Variations on a spread eagle 4. Jump landings 5. Feet position on a sit spin...I am using Dickie B. as the source on this one 6. Falling leaves 7. Spinning in both directions...okay, enough about technique....Re: artistry....Therefore, Mr. hersh disagrees with the judges brought to tears at 98 Nats...lp....Janet Lynn...Brian B. Peggy...Dorothy...Sandra B.....Scott....Roz...Peter...Judy B.....Verne...Have I missed anyone? No artistry in 98 WP for EOE...Am I off base?

January 22nd, 2000, 10:01 AM
I'm sorry but that guy really needs to wake up and smell the coffee! I have to agree with all of y'all. Irina did skate well, but the question still is: can she do it again at Worlds? Since Maria won worlds last year she hasn't done all that well this year. I think we will see alot of skaters come and go but MK will always be the best, because she knows how to make her skates talk. MK knows exactly what she has to do to win and trust me she will do what it takes why?, cuz' she wants to! As MK said once before, "It isn't over until I say it is over."

January 22nd, 2000, 10:22 AM
...but Hersh acts like Irina beat Michelle every round. Does he mention anywhere in there that Michelle won both the long and the short programs?

January 22nd, 2000, 11:13 AM
No, he does not! I read the article and nothing in there that says MK beat IS in sp or lp. He shouldn't have gambled his money! Nope, Nope, Nope, not a very good thing to do!

January 22nd, 2000, 12:29 PM
I don't have the copy of the e-mail I sent him, but my friend Cindy does...I cc'd her...She will bring it to school on Monday.I did point out that MK had won 2/3 of the competition.I hated his use of the word clobbered in his e-mail to me....In 97 Nats when Michelle fell several times and Tara skated cleanly, I could almost see that description, though I have never heard og the word clobbered being used in figure skating....Maybe tennis, boxing, etc. I thought it was a cruel word and quite inaccurate to boot.Anyway if Michelle read his article I hope it fires her up to prove him wrong. If it hurts her, she need only come here to see the outpouring of love and support.

January 22nd, 2000, 12:47 PM
kwanette- ITA. There was a degree of venom toward Kwan (artist standing still, being clobbered) in his response to your e-mail that, frankly, really surprised me. It seemed unprofessional.

January 22nd, 2000, 01:10 PM
Maybe he didn't get a Christmas card from Michelle this year and he's mad about it. ;o) But then I wouldn't give a card to anyone that called me second rate.