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 How do you defend Mao?

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iceskatingfan
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PostSubject: How do you defend Mao?   Thu Oct 21, 2010 11:44 pm

As a big big Mao fan, I am always a bit heartbroken and frustrated when people try to tell me that she's not that good or that Yuna Kim is waaay better than her, based on just the fact that she didn't win Gold in Vancouver.

I noticed that a lot of casual skating fans, or people who only watch skating once every 4 years during the Olympics, are more drawn to Yuna Kim. I personally think it is because she has a much more contemporary and Western appeal to her (although I prefer Mao's style and skating to hers).

I try to defend my stance that Mao is the best current lady skater, but it's hard to tell a lay fan that because they don't know much about skating. All they know is that Yuna won Gold over Mao and that Yuna holds the world records for her scores. If I were talking to someone who actually watched skating, I would argue about Mao's grace, lines, footwork, etc. I feel like it's almost impossible to argue with someone that Mao is on par with Yuna, especially because all the news articles and reports talk about how Yuna basically eclipsed everyone last season and was in a league of her own Sad

So my question is, how do you all try and prove to your friends (who don't know anything about skating) that Mao is just as good as Yuna (or better, whatever your opinion is, etc.)?

Also, please don't take this as me bashing Yuna! I don't mean to bash her or invite any bashing. I think Yuna is a great skater but I am curious if any of you run into this problem and how you deal with it cat .
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Thu Oct 21, 2010 11:55 pm


I ran into this problem countless times. Basically, I tell people to watch one of Mao's programs and judge for themselves. People natually have different tastes but usually I find that after they watch her skate, they really come to appreciate Mao's qualities. Those that tend to say negative things about her usually have never sat down and watched her skate a whole program. They base their assumptions on hearsay from media or fanatics. Rolling Eyes You'll just have to ignore those who don't have a genuine interest in FS besides one skater. Based on my personal experiences, people who are actual FS fans appreciate both skaters and tend to think they are on par in terms of talent although they have very different styles.
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Fri Oct 22, 2010 9:25 pm

her lines, her posture, her flexibility, her spirals. such attention to detail that i really don't see in other skaters. isn't mao the only one who pretty much doesn't travel when doing the spins? for example, her sit spin is so unique. she really is close to the ice and i never see any other skaters sit so close to the ice during that spin. and she stays in the same spot.

i like to say that yuna is good at jumps while mao is good at attention to detail. and now that mao is working on her jumps... watch out world!

this post is by no means to offend the talent of any other skaters... just to point out the strengths of mao's skating!
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Fri Oct 22, 2010 9:33 pm

In my personal experience defending Mao has always been one of the easier things to do when i'm talking to rational people. I start off by letting them know that Mao has several accomplishments that eclipse other skaters. You have to look at skaters as a whole and skaters are not just their wins and loses. Granted I also cannot talk to a non figure skating fan about the "emotion" behind Mao's programs because that means nothing to them. So I always make it my business to talk strictly facts and statics. I let them know that Mao is a two time World Champion. She is able to consistently perform 3A which is the hardest jump for women. I let them know that Yuna's reign as the "best" has not lasted as long as Mao's reign. Yuna has been the so called best for maybe 2 or 3 years now, while Mao was proclaimed a child star and had the opportunity to compete against skating legends like Irina Slutskaya, Sasha, etc.
Sometime I use the excuse that Olympics doesn't determine too much of a skaters worth since it is honestly just a flashy World Championship event.
If it's an American, I'm always quick to draw the Michelle Kwan card. I just very simply highlight that Michelle Kwan, probably the only female skater every American knows and also considered one of the best of all time, never won an OGM (to which most people look at me remarkably surprised). If that doesn't work then it's either because they have their own affiliations skater wise or they just don't feel up to listening (or their stubborn).

Usually I argue these point with a little hesitation since I like Yuna as well (just not her psycho, insane fans) but most these arguments hold when I need to spot Mao the credibility she so rightly deserves. Mao is arguably the best female skater of all time, and i'm sure to always have facts to support it.

It's not a matter of why Mao is better than Yuna, it is simply why Mao is the best, period.

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Fri Oct 22, 2010 11:39 pm

I completely agree with what you said Figure_skating_love! Thumbs up!
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Sat Oct 23, 2010 2:10 am

I don't even know anyone else who EVER watches figure skating sadly Sad. So I never have to argue this with anyone.

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Sun Oct 24, 2010 8:04 pm

In my case, though, I came from a country where figure skating basically does not exist...so defending Mao in my own, shall we say, territory, has not happened to me yet.

Most of the backlash I see against Mao are all from YT videos, and most of them I don't even bother to take seriously or care because I know who these crabs are in to. Unfortunately, most of the backlash I read are all on Mao's skin color, her ears, her seemingly blank face, and even her chokers and that their idol is sooooo MUCH BETTER...so I can only think "WTH?? WHAT DOES THIS HAVE ANYTHING TO DO ABOUT MAO'S TALENT???!!!" I knew then and there that these people who are more into chokers than the craft itself are too stubborn and crazy for their own good --- so I don't waste my time anymore. So no defending on Mao, there.

I can only be happy that aside from these instances, though, my other Mao-related experiences are more logical, and are quick to recognize Mao's talents so I don't need defending on Mao there, too. Smile
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Mon Oct 25, 2010 1:33 pm

Most of the people who bash on Mao are from Youtube, so I automatically condition myself to ignore their pitiful senseless comments. I tried defending Mao there, and it's just a waste of time and brains. I do applaud some brave souls out there who try to rationalize with the crazy anti-Mao force, but at the end of the day, most of them are just spammers or trolls. Nothing we can do, except pray that their ignorance and stupidity isn't contagious.

Of course, I do get why people prefer Miss Kim Yu-na over Mao. Mao doesn't have enough Western appeal and even worse, she got OSM on Vancouver and generally looked sour on the few pictures they took of her. Actually, now that I think about it, new FS fans would find it easier to support Yu-na. After all, she has a wider fanbase and with Michelle Kwan on her side, a lot of people would aknowledge her more.

I'm sad that Mao doesn't get the recognition she deserves and just because she's doing really bad right now, people find it so easy to pick on her and announce that she's already past her prime. There are people who can see her talent and I appreciate it when they see it in Mao. She's such a wonderful skater and I hope more people can see her that way, not just as Yu-na's bitter rival from Japan.

(BTW, I love Yu-na a lot and I'm not hating on her so if the tone of my post made it seem that I do not like her... Well, I'm sorry if it became that way! Sad )
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:34 am

klarification wrote:

Of course, I do get why people prefer Miss Kim Yu-na over Mao. Mao doesn't have enough Western appeal and even worse, she got OSM on Vancouver and generally looked sour on the few pictures they took of her. Actually, now that I think about it, new FS fans would find it easier to support Yu-na. After all, she has a wider fanbase and with Michelle Kwan on her side, a lot of people would aknowledge her more.

Understandably, plus she gets way more media coverage in all countries. I mean there was even a small bit of News about her in the US when she broke from Orser, and Americans aren't big figure skating fans

klarification wrote:

I'm sad that Mao doesn't get the recognition she deserves and just because she's doing really bad right now, people find it so easy to pick on her and announce that she's already past her prime. There are people who can see her talent and I appreciate it when they see it in Mao. She's such a wonderful skater and I hope more people can see her that way, not just as Yu-na's bitter rival from Japan.

It's sad that people want to believe that Mao is down and out just because she turned 20. There are too many examples of skaters who skated at age way older than her and did well, even winning major competitions. Irina, Sasha, Michelle, Carolina, Joanie, even Miki. If people are dumb enough to say that Mao's career is over based on one bad performance at NHK Trophy then they are sadly mistaken.

sapphiresky wrote:
I completely agree with what you said Figure_skating_love! Thumbs up!

Thank you!

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Tue Oct 26, 2010 6:55 am

Although there are posts on youtube that negatively attack both Mao and Yuna, I just choose not to pay attention to either.

I also choose to concentrate on figure skating fans that appreciate both skaters, as they are both undeniably super talented, hard working, and special..amongst many other things.

On the yuna forum, in the spoilers section, there are plenty of fans that have been very sympathetic with Mao's last skate at the NHK Trophy. So it's really not all that bad, and I wouldn't concentrate on 'defending' so much.
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Tue Oct 26, 2010 7:00 am

theicemarks wrote:
Although there are posts on youtube that negatively attack both Mao and Yuna, I just choose not to pay attention to either.

I also choose to concentrate on figure skating fans that appreciate both skaters, as they are both undeniably super talented, hard working, and special..amongst many other things.

On the yuna forum, in the spoilers section, there are plenty of fans that have been very sympathetic with Mao's last skate at the NHK Trophy. So it's really not all that bad, and I wouldn't concentrate on 'defending' so much.
WEll said! Thumbs up!
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Oct 27, 2010 7:06 am


I think the most important problem are commentators who aren't objective. Most of people (even if they have been watching figure skating for many years) rely on their opinions and that's the reason why so many people in N. America consider Mao to be far behind Yuna. Luckily in my country that's not a problem because commentators are very objective and it's really nice to listen to them. They judge not only programs, but also scores and usually I agree with all things they say.

When I read our (Polish) forum about figure skating I don't feel need to defend Mao, because no one attacks her. Usually people evaluate actual events and programs, not skaters in total.

By the way most of people wrote they think difference between Yuna & Mao after SP in Vancouver should have been lower and Mao completly deserved to win FS in Turin (Well... SP too, but FS was more controversial because Yuna won it with fall and withour one of 2A). Commentators said it too.

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Oct 27, 2010 10:59 am

europeanfan wrote:

By the way most of people wrote they think difference between Yuna & Mao after SP in Vancouver should have been lower and Mao completly deserved to win FS in Turin (Well... SP too, but FS was more controversial because Yuna won it with fall and withour one of 2A). Commentators said it too.

Hahaha yeah...I agree- Btw, those issues caused quite a stir on a Chinese FS forum- I think about 40 pages of comments/arguments (but mostly supporting Mao) lol!
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Oct 27, 2010 11:48 am

sapphiresky wrote:
europeanfan wrote:

By the way most of people wrote they think difference between Yuna & Mao after SP in Vancouver should have been lower and Mao completly deserved to win FS in Turin (Well... SP too, but FS was more controversial because Yuna won it with fall and withour one of 2A). Commentators said it too.

Hahaha yeah...I agree- Btw, those issues caused quite a stir on a Chinese FS forum- I think about 40 pages of comments/arguments (but mostly supporting Mao) lol!
Same happened at Russian forum. It seemed like everyone wanted Mao to win, even who are not her fans. Love
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Oct 27, 2010 12:53 pm

Yes, I don't really want to think about the injustice that happened at worlds again Mad . Well at least it was Mao who got justice in the end.

As far as defending Mao you youtube, you guys are totally right. It's useless. I used to try defending her there too. Arguing with mean people who had no common sense got old. I usually just try to stay away from videos that I think might be offensive to Mao altogether now. If I do happen to watch one, it's actually still hard for to restrain myself in commenting. I usually don't comment though. When I can't help myself, I usually say something that's logical, and fair to both skaters, or I simply just say something like, "Go Mao!" just to piss them off. lol

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Thu Oct 28, 2010 1:00 am

europeanfan wrote:

I think the most important problem are commentators who aren't objective. Most of people (even if they have been watching figure skating for many years) rely on their opinions and that's the reason why so many people in N. America consider Mao to be far behind Yuna. Luckily in my country that's not a problem because commentators are very objective and it's really nice to listen to them. They judge not only programs, but also scores and usually I agree with all things they say.


I agree! I think people who have no serious interest in figure skating just assume that Yuna is miles above everyone because the commentators and media make it seem that way. Especially last season where most medial outlets in the US criticized Mao and didn't really highlight any of her amazing skills.

I wish that people could just watch Mao perform and see how great she is! Her skills in themselves don't need defending but it's hard to sit back and listen to someone say that Mao is inferior to Yuna Sad .
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Fri Oct 29, 2010 11:36 am

Yes, now that I think about it, I used to rely on the commentators to tell me who the best skaters were too. This was a long time ago, back when I was a kid, but I'm sure I would even still rely on them somewhat if I was a new fan, or just a casual fan who only watches skating at the olympics.

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Sat Oct 30, 2010 8:08 pm

Hello! This is my first time to comment in this forum. Actually, I really don't have enough knowledge about figure skating.I live in a place where we cannot skate on ice.Sad In as much as I would like to try.

When I first saw the result of the winter olympics the highlight was Figure Skating. So, I immediately search videos in youtube and found the 2009 world champ videos... At first I was amazed by Kim Yu Na's performances. Then, I've searched more videos of her. But then, I came across the video of Mao in her gala program "Por Una Cabeza" by then I started to like her also. As I continued searching I came to like and admire her. I like Yu Na too but I am more of a MAO fan... Very Happy

What I love about Mao is her fighting spirit and being a down to earth person. I can see and feel it in her interviews and performances. I just love her.

In the case of defending her, I think I don't have the guts to post comments in youtube. I prefer to keep silent and just watch her performances...

By the way, Thanks for this forum...now I can express what I fell about Mao...I am so happy.

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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Sat Nov 27, 2010 5:12 am

i am also from a country where figure skating is barely recognized so i have not encountered this type of problem..though in my sister's opinion (who watch very little FS) she thinks yuna is better since she looks more...umm...carefree and comfortable in her skating whereas mao tend to pay attention to every move she makes and make her look less fun to watch

i've never skated in my life and only started to like FS about a year ago...at that time i find yuna more interesting rather than mao but then i thought it wont hurt for me to watch other skaters as well so that's when i watch mao programs and immediately fell in love with her...

for those who think yuna is better, make them watch at least one of mao's program....i recommend ones that she tend to smile so avoid her 'bells'
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Tue Nov 30, 2010 8:52 pm

iceskatingfan wrote:
As a big big Mao fan, I am always a bit heartbroken and frustrated when people try to tell me that she's not that good or that Yuna Kim is waaay better than her, based on just the fact that she didn't win Gold in Vancouver.

Yeah...those people are likely not knowledgeable about figure skating, have no critical thinking skills and cannot think for themselves. They rely on what the media hypes up, and can't tell what's art and what is not.

For me, I don't want to defend Mao against those people because I feel like they're not worth my time and there's no sense talking to them.

So what...it's a gold medal, it's representative of one competition. Even if it comes every 4 years, it's still just one competition in that particular season.
I don't think that people nowadays like Sarah Hughes as much as they appreciated Michelle Kwan. And people compare Michelle and YK so much, and I was trying to see why I love Michelle but not YK. I thought it was just bias, but when I watched them back to back, I immediately knew why. Michelle puts her heart on the ice, just like Mao does- there's a love for what they do everytime they touch the ice. It's like I could see their stories and their struggles to get to where they are.

YK's skating has never touched me and never will, unlike Mao's. There's something special about Mao that the other one can't express- it's something innate. Perhaps it's Mao's love for what she does- you can just tell, and perhaps it's her dedication and never-give-up attitude.
I also tend to look at someone based on their overall person and personality. Despite Mao being slightly younger, she acts way more mature lol...and never makes excuses or is accusatory of other people (especially publicly...jeez Rolling Eyes). If they're not a good person, no matter what the media says, I will not like that person.

Finally, let them say what they want to say.
Mao is a lot luckier than YK. If YK didn't bring that gold medal home, she would be probably criticized like no tomorrow. I kinda feel sorry for her.
However, Mao is still loved, now more than ever- which shows that people love her for her skating and personality, and not for her placements or what nationality she is. flower
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Dec 01, 2010 2:20 pm

^Mao Asada and Michelle Kwan? For me, they are very different skaters, don't really see the similarity. Question
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Dec 01, 2010 7:28 pm

theicemarks wrote:
^Mao Asada and Michelle Kwan? For me, they are very different skaters, don't really see the similarity. Question
Of course they are different! Surprised

I think what sapphiresky is trying to say is that Mao and Michelle give her the same feeling when they skate on ice. Both touch and win hearts and both show, in everything they do, the passion that they have for figure skating.
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Dec 01, 2010 8:49 pm

Thanks klarification for understanding me! I thought that's what I wrote lol...
You really do clarify things Razz
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Dec 01, 2010 8:52 pm

I try my best sapphiresky. Thumbs up!
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PostSubject: Re: How do you defend Mao?   Wed Dec 01, 2010 9:32 pm

sapphiresky wrote:
Thanks klarification for understanding me! I thought that's what I wrote lol...
You really do clarify things Razz

I'm sure most of us understood what you meant sapphiresky, don't worry! Yep!

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