First, I must say, seeing all the empty seats in a Korean arena for this is rather alarming. Not entirely surprising, unfortunately, now that Yu-Na is gone, neither Park nor Kim is doing half as well enough to fill her skates, and especially after things panned out the way they did at the Olympics. But the ISU has been relying too much on Korea to host things and such, and it’ll be a big blow to an already struggling sport to lose the Korean crowds.
The results of the short dance were also initially alarming, but now it doesn’t seem like it indicates anything we weren’t already aware of. Weaver & Pojé’s third place there was strictly on their levels, and they trounced Chock & Bates pretty well once both teams got the same tariff in the free. You gotta feel more for the Shibutanis, though. Highest tech score in the short and they still couldn’t take the lead there, and now when they’re down in third you can’t even say they were robbed, what with those twizzles. It seems they just can’t win.
As for the singles, the short was an impressive show from Denis Ten, and the nine-point lead might just come in handy, but you still just don’t know if he’ll melt down in the free. And I’m really starting to wonder about Gracie. Last year the line on her was Frank was getting her to consistency, but this season it’s starting to seem like not so much; he’s had her for too long now to say they’re still working on it. And if she wants to beat those Russians, she cannot make them at Worlds.