And it ain't the ladies. It's the dudes!
Is the international skating union paying these guys to create this kind of press? Whatever - I'm sure the people who run the thing are secretly rubbing their hands together in glee! Not since Nancy and Tonya has so much shit been slung at so many different targets! I love it! LOL!
First up, Evgeny Plushenko of Russia, who retired in 2006 after winning Olympic gold. He quit one of the ice shows to try for an Olympic come-back. I'm reading that he's the favorite to win gold again. Really? If that's the case, then in my opinion the fix is in.
Plushenko started it all by flinging some shit at French medal threat Brian Joubert, claiming that Joubert got marked more favorably by the judges at the European championships for "transitions" between elements even though, so says Plushenko, they both did the same transitions. Which is to say - none whatsoever. Oh those naughty naughty boys - getting by on their quad jumps and not much else, although Joubert is, in my opinion, much cuter and has a better overall presentation and appearance on the ice.
Then, the head of the French figure skating federation had to put his two francs into the discussion, by claiming that the "North American" judges were conspiring to keep the Europeans out of the medals at the Olympics. Those Frenchies, they just do not know when to keep their lips zipped. He could have just let Plushenko shoot himself in the foot with his, frankly, smarmy and self-serving accusations, but noooooo.
Enter Jamie Sale. She and partner (now husband David Pelletier), skating for Canada, were first awarded Olympic silver for their fabulous routine that brought the house down. Amid subsequently proven accusations of a fix by - are you ready for this - the Russian and French judges - Sale and Pelletier were awarded a dual gold medal for their performance. She says that Plushenko has benefited under the old and new systems by receiving high marks when he did not earn them, and he is a hypocrite to complain.
Now Canadian figure-skating star Patrick Chan, who has thrived under the new scoring system, has shown his claws to Plushenko and, in a glancing blow, to Joubert. This is great stuff:
From AFP Report at Yahoo Sports: Patrick Chan Blasts 'Old' Plushenko
February 11, 2009
VANCOUVER (AFP) - World silver medallist Patrick Chan dubbed his Olympic rival Yevgeny Plushenko as ‘old’ as the Canadian teenager insisted his style of skating was the one of the future.
The 19-year-old found himself at the centre of a row amid allegations of North American lobbying against European figure skaters ahead of the men’s figure skating event in Vancouver.
Chan is bidding for Canada’s first men’s figure skating gold but he is up against European rivals including Plushenko and Brian Joubert of France, who are renowned for their quadruple jumps which he does not possess as he focuses more on transitions and step sequences which are rewarded highly under the new judging system.
And allegations of American lobbying erupted after it emerged that Joe Inman, a veteran US Olympic level skating judge, sent e-mails to judges and officials reminding them to mark presentation scores accurately.
Inman sent the e-mails after he heard that Plushenko had said after winning a sixth European title that both he and former world champion Joubert do not have any transitions moves linking elements together because they focus on their jumps, implying how could they be awarded marks for something they do not do.
Chan refused to be drawn into the controversy, but said he believed that the style of skating of 27-year-old Russian Plushenko, who has returned to competition in a bid to defend his Olympic title, was out of date.
“For me the transitions are one of the most important things in a programme, otherwise it’s very boring to watch,” he said.
“Above all in a programme like the Phantom of the Opera which I do for the long programme. It’s important to have good transitions to interpret the music with unique footwork.
“I love the new system, it’s a great way to promote an all around skater especially a skater like me,” said Chan.
“He’s (Plushenko) confident that the quad will really help him, that he doesn’t need transitions. He’s old, I can’t tell him it’s not good.
“I think we’ll start seeing more skaters like me in future generations.”
Chan believes that Plushenko and Joubert will try and intimidate him with the quad in practice ahead of the competition.
“Of course they’ll (Plushenko and Joubert) do it in practice and will nail it on front of me,” he said.
“It’s totally normal that’s why the Olympics are so special. I’ll only use that to feed the fire and focus on what I can do.
“It’s going to be exciting to see what Plushenko has up his sleeve.
“We’re all a bunch of great skaters. It’s whoever who can grasp that moment on that Tuesday and Thursday.”
*************************************************************Most ridiculous statement in this article: Chan refused to be drawn into the controversy... . Yeah, right. If Chan was trying to avoid controversy, he shouldn't have said that because Plushenko is old (implying set in his ways, stuck in the old system and perhaps, even, doddering and drooling),he wouldn't listen to Chan's opinion that he (Plushenko) can no longer get by on his quads: “He’s (Plushenko) confident that the quad will really help him, that he doesn’t need transitions. He’s old, I can’t tell him it’s not good."
Take that, Evgeny.
******************************************************************What should happen - but we know it never will - is that the international skating union or federation, or whatever it's called, sanctions Plushenko for his comments which are quite transparently an attempt to influence the outcome of the men's figure-skating competion. I mean, come on, dude. If you were so fricking good, you would keep your stupid mouth shut and let your skating do all the talking necessary. But noooooooo. What is totally pathetic is that you will get away with it because everyone except Jamie Sale is afraid of the frigging Russians - perhaps because they fear a nuclear-poisoned pellet being slipped into their orange juice at breakfast one morning?
What did Plushenko really hope to gain by shooting off his mouth? If he doesn't win the gold, he can claim bias. If he wins the gold, no one is going to take that medal seriously, they will see it as the judges caving in to pressure. Plushenko and his really stupid handlers have put him into a no-win situation. Gee, couldn't happen to a nicer guy.
More on the ice-poop scandal:
On Inman's email from that bastion of fair and unbiased reporting, the New York Daily News, February 11, 2010
Judges accused of bias against European figure skaters
Medal contenders Joubert, Plushenko at centre of uproar over judge's e-mails
BEVERLEY SMITHVANCOUVER— From Wednesday's Globe and Mail
Last updated on Thursday, Feb. 11, 2010 03:11AM EST