So assignments came out Monday, and we’ve had time to digest retirements, non-retirements, and Jeremy Abbott apparently not retiring but skipping the Grand Prix anyway(if it gets him to Boston, we should be glad for it). A few thoughts:
Of course the initial rosters and the final lineups for these events can often be very different, thanks to all the withdrawals that happen in the meantime, but it feels even more this year like multiple skaters on the roster won’t show up. We can’t even be completely sure yet that Patrick Chan and Mao Asada will, and even if they do, there are multiple older skaters I suspect will either decide to retire or just get injured. Perhaps the real intriguing entries are Kavaguti & Smirnov and Bobrova & Soloviev, who’ll be factors for gold at their events-if they show up, but who knows if they will.
Though even more eye-raising is the lack of Adelina Sotnikova. Haven’t seen any announcements about exactly what she’s up to at this point, but that she’s not on this roster does not look promising for her continuing her career…
Then there are the skaters you are really happy to see make the circuit. I’m especially happy about Laurence Fornier Beaudry & Nikolaj Sorenson making it in(have there been Danish skaters on the circuit before? I mean, ever?) On the other hand, tough breaks for quite a few skaters who only got one assignment, especially Sinitsina & Katsalapov and Coomes & Buckland, who really should’ve gotten two, although at least they’re more likely than not to pick up a second. Meanwhile, we’ve got poor Mirai, who’s been in this position before, and it took a while for her to get her second event that time.
Speaking of U.S. ladies, it seems the failure of the USFSA’s gamble on Liza T last year did not prevent them from attempting it again, apparently hoping Julia L doesn’t recover in time and Gracie has a clear path to gold at Skate America this year. Although given how inconsistent she’s been lately, perhaps we shouldn’t rely on that anyway. Poor Ashley has it much harder, going up against Liza T at her first event and Mao at her second, and at the latter especially that’s just for starters.