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Author Topic: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)  (Read 25998 times)

ev4n

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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #150 on: 19 Feb 2014, 11:33 »

55 saves by a 21 year old Latvian kid.  Well done.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #151 on: 19 Feb 2014, 11:39 »

Also huge congrats to the 2 US teams not featuring Lolo Jones for medalling.  Still a travesty that Lolo came instead of the woman who was there in the first place, but I guess NBC got what they wanted.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #152 on: 19 Feb 2014, 14:16 »

The Olympics is a sports event. Stuff that isn't sport shouldn't be in there.
This begs the question. What makes an activity a sport? Compare and contrast ice dancing, and ballet dancing, for example. Essentially, the only thing that makes the former an Olympic sport, and the latter an art, is that a score is awarded at the end of one, but not the other.

The events I would throw out are the ones where artistic impression and style judges play too large a role. Sure, figure skating, slopestyle, halfpipe, synchronized swimming and the like are physically demanding - no question about that. But evaluation of style always seems to leave too much room for differences of opinion as to who actually was the best. May be that is part of the fun actually?
Style and physical beauty, as assessed by very culturally-specific standards, is certainly a big part of the marketing appeal, I think. By curious coincidence: On subjective judging, racism, and injuries in figure-skating.

High-level, and especially professional, sport involves trading off injury for rewards of some combination of money, glory, and self-esteem. But let us not forget that someone who spends decades in a desk job, and then expires from one of the conditions provoked by a long-term sedentary life-style, has essentially done the same thing. It's a matter of how high we decide to burn our flames.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #153 on: 19 Feb 2014, 15:28 »

Or rather how we burn them. Mental and emotional stress can be just as damaging as putting your body through the ringer physically.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #154 on: 19 Feb 2014, 16:10 »

I believe Chess will be a sport in the 2016 Olympics in Rio. Along with Rugby Sevens.

But no wrestling.  :? :? :?

Oh my fuck, rugby sevens is one of the best things there is anywhere.

Guys, how do you feel about Pussy Riot's attempted performance at the Sochi Olympics being broken up violently by the Cossack Militia?
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #155 on: 19 Feb 2014, 16:38 »

Not surprised in the slightest?
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #156 on: 19 Feb 2014, 17:49 »

The two best hockey teams in the world will be playing on back-to-back nights. The winner of both games will be guaranteed a medal - but the loser of only one will get a silver.

By the way - there are 400 total events between the summer and winter Olympics, in 44 "disciplines" (their term, not mine), split 29/15 between summer and winter games. There are eight "team" sports - six summer (Basketball, Field Hockey, Football - aka "Soccer" - Handball, Volleyball, Water Polo) and two winter (Curling and Ice Hockey). Of the team sports, Handball is about the only one I have a serious issue with continuing in the Olympics. It is pretty much a non-existent sport outside of Eastern Europe, because instead of playing that, they play that "other" game - basketball.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #157 on: 19 Feb 2014, 23:14 »

Style and physical beauty, as assessed by very culturally-specific standards, is certainly a big part of the marketing appeal, I think. By curious coincidence: On subjective judging, racism, and injuries in figure-skating.
Marketing appeal certainly plays a big part as to why figure skating is a sport rather than art. Racism I'm not very sure about. Possibly? The case of Surya Bonaly (France) came to my mind, too. She made her debut at European championships at the age of 15 or something, and earned the reputation of "a teenager doing acrobatics on skates". Not surprisingly she scored high on technical merit, but artistic impression was a bit lacking. My eye is largely untrained, but even to me she did not seem to quite have the grace of a grown woman. Circus stunts like back flips did little to help that. She did mature quite a bit as years ticked by, eventually winning a few medals, but the old reputation stuck. That may have affected some of the judges, and is actually a thing that has been bothering my untrained eye - in figure skating you apparently need to make yourself known in advance to earn top marks. But I'm not ruling out the possibility that Miss Bonaly's initially unsatisfactory style marks were partially affected by the unfamiliar sight of black legs on ice. At the level of World Championships I would think that judges have grown out of racism. After all, women's figure skating in particular has lately been dominated by athelete/artists from Asia or in Michelle Kwan's case (US) of Asian heritage - and justifiably so, they have earned their good marks.

But how do you objectively define the difference in artistic impression made by an athletic perky teenage girl and a more mature woman? It is difficult to entirely avoid cultural standards. By "culture" I here mean the culture that has evolved in the world of figure skating, and the judges who have taken it to their hearts to keenly follow the sport and its evolution.

Is it sexist of me to concentrate on women's figure skating here? Is it sexist to emphasize the diffrence between a teenager and an adult? Women's gymnastics was also forced to deal with similar problems. It is a disturbing thought that a rule change would be even partially motivated by the spectators' and judges' (or media's) desire to see a bit older girls in skimpy gymnast's outfit.
« Last Edit: 20 Feb 2014, 00:01 by Skewbrow »
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #158 on: 19 Feb 2014, 23:15 »

Wait, how is a back flip a "circus stunt" compared to "jumping up in the air and spinning"? A back flip on skates sounds ridiculously awesome!

Edit: Sounds and looks awesome. Seriously, how does this not win?

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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #159 on: 20 Feb 2014, 00:07 »

IDK, ask a figure skating judge. Some possibilities:
  • Tradishun.
  • Awesome =/= artistic.
  • Looks more dangerous?

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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #160 on: 20 Feb 2014, 00:11 »

Why is artistic an issue? It's sports. Also why is dangerous a bad thing? IT'S SPORTS.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #161 on: 20 Feb 2014, 01:06 »

Guessing (again).

The old scoring was based on awarding two separate scores titled something like "technical merit" and "artistic impression". That has been changed, but was the way it was done, when Bonaly was active. Those fancy costumes are also a part of the artistic impression, so artistry is still part of the contest. Otherwise the skaters could wear jumpsuit or tights, right?

Dangerous? I wasn't (am not) so sure about that. May be something like: what could possibly go wrong, when there are six skaters in the rink simultaneously (during warm ups) doing back flips? There's something about sharp blades flying through the air. You don't see hockey players diving blades first through the air either. A goalie or a defenseman often seeks to block a shot sliding like that - but not when airborne (or one skated lifted high up).

The weight of tradition is not to be underestimated. After all, an individuals figure skating (up to something like the 80s) used to consist of three parts, not just the short program and free program as it is now. They were doing something like "compulsory figures" before the short program. Something like: the skater is supposed to do two figure 8s of a prescribed size gliding on one skate, and retracing their path EXACTLY. Afterwards the judges would kneel on the ice, carefully examine the groove made by the skaters blade, and deduct points for all deviations. Needless to say, this part of the competition rarely attracted any spectators or TV cameras.

Edit: What I said about back flips being dangerous doesn't make sense really. I think the dislike is largely aesthetic.
« Last Edit: 20 Feb 2014, 04:14 by Skewbrow »
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #162 on: 20 Feb 2014, 02:17 »

It's probably just that the figure skating community in general is highly resistant to change.  Just look at the Duchesnays back in the 80s - they would get low 4s and high 5s for the same routine because they were so innovative and controversial.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #163 on: 20 Feb 2014, 02:46 »

Edit: Sounds and looks awesome. Seriously, how does this not win?
According to the article I linked above, when Ms. Bonaly performed the flip at the Nagano Winter Olympics, not only did it not win, but although the flip was technically permitted because Ms Bonaly landed on one blade, the judges retroactively ruled it illegal and reduced her score.

As for culturally specific standards, compare and contrast Oksana Baiul of Ukraine and Surya Bonaly in the 1993 World Championships. Bonaly outscored eventual gold medallist Baiul on technical merit but was relegated to second place by poor scores in presentation. Consider which skater conformed most closely to the standards of femininity and beauty current in the judges' countries (seven of nine being European, the others from Japan and China), and which was likely to be closer to their idea of an "ice princess". The comments on both clips are typical YouTube, but it is only Bonaly who is described as "a Mack truck in a dress"...
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #164 on: 20 Feb 2014, 05:33 »

Let's put this into perspective a little bit.  Surya Bonaly (and Baiul) skated at a time when both men's and women's figure skating were undergoing a jumping revolution.  Quality, difficulty, frequency and timing (the later in the program, the more difficult) of jumps was starting to be emphasized over traditional artistry.  Skaters like Surya Bonaly, Tonya Harding and Elvis Stojko threw triples and quads into their programs, looking to outscore more traditional skaters like Oksana Baiul, Nancy Kerrigan and a slew of Russian skaters.

A disparity between technical and artistic scores was incredibly common in that era.

Let's also not discount that Surya Bonaly was a 5 time European champion.  She beat Oksana Baiul twice at Europeans.

I'm not saying the racial element was absent, because I have no idea (but probably not).  All I'm saying is that there's more to the story than that.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #165 on: 20 Feb 2014, 05:37 »

See this wikipage for an explanation of the old rules. You see that the points did not matter much. The placings were determined by how the judges placed you among the skaters (each judge produced their own ranking) in the short/free program (the latter getting a higher weight).

Edit: Removed a rant. I think I have blown enough esteem for today.

It's probably just that the figure skating community in general is highly resistant to change.  Just look at the Duchesnays back in the 80s - they would get low 4s and high 5s for the same routine because they were so innovative and controversial.
This is probably close to the mark. It seemed to me that in the dance in the early 80s the rankings were mostly preset. Any changes from the predicted rankings were close to scandalous.
« Last Edit: 20 Feb 2014, 05:47 by Skewbrow »
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #166 on: 20 Feb 2014, 12:13 »

Some shouts went off around the office.  Guess it's good news.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #167 on: 20 Feb 2014, 12:45 »

Congrats (you're Canadian, eh?). The conclusion was exciting.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #168 on: 20 Feb 2014, 12:51 »

Yeah, I'm Canadian.

I think the nationed stopped there for an hour or two.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #169 on: 20 Feb 2014, 15:09 »

Crap.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #170 on: 20 Feb 2014, 15:11 »

I think the nation stopped there for an hour or two.
I know that's exaggeration and I know it's the Olympic championship but...is it really that big a deal to Canada as a country? I mean sports are fun to watch but are they really that important to people? I've never really understood this.

(I'd be saying the same thing regardless of who won, and congrats to Canada's team)
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #171 on: 20 Feb 2014, 15:12 »

They "created" the game, so it's that important to them.

To me, it's like we're just putting one more nail in the coffin of Women's Olympic Hockey.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #172 on: 20 Feb 2014, 15:15 »

Wait, why? Because Canada won?
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #173 on: 20 Feb 2014, 17:00 »

I think the nation stopped there for an hour or two.
I know that's exaggeration and I know it's the Olympic championship but...is it really that big a deal to Canada as a country? I mean sports are fun to watch but are they really that important to people? I've never really understood this.

(I'd be saying the same thing regardless of who won, and congrats to Canada's team)

It's HOCKEY
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #174 on: 20 Feb 2014, 17:19 »

...so? Yeah, it's Canada's sport but it's still just...eh, whatever, I'll never understand.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #175 on: 20 Feb 2014, 18:20 »

When the same team wins the gold every single Olympics, we're pretty much proving that it's Canada, the USA, and that's pretty much it when it comes to women's hockey.

This game was the first game since their preliminary battle that was actually competitive for both teams. You could just have the entire tournament be these two teams, and have the rest of the teams just play a round robin to figure out who takes Bronze.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #177 on: 21 Feb 2014, 06:36 »

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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #178 on: 21 Feb 2014, 10:15 »

I think the nation stopped there for an hour or two.
I know that's exaggeration and I know it's the Olympic championship but...is it really that big a deal to Canada as a country? I mean sports are fun to watch but are they really that important to people? I've never really understood this.

Super Bowl viewership, in the US:  111.5 million of 317.5 million  (35.1%)
Gold medal hockey game, men, 2010, in Canada:  16.6 million of 33.5 million  (49.6%)

Yes, it really is that big a deal.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #179 on: 21 Feb 2014, 10:22 »

It's not just a spectator sport either - kids in Canada play hockey (or at the very least ice skate) in the way that kids in the UK play football and in the USA play, uh, whatever it is that kids play there (baseball? American football? I'm not sure which is bigger). I have a lot of Canadian friends on Twitter and this game is all they have been talking about for days, and judging by their tweets it's all anyone's been talking about anywhere.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #180 on: 21 Feb 2014, 10:33 »

It's regional May. In the Northern part of the country we play a shit ton of Hockey. In the South East out to Texas it's Football country.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #181 on: 21 Feb 2014, 10:57 »

This is just a crazy guess, but

speed skating in the netherlands > ice hockey in canada > football in texas > football in the UK
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #182 on: 21 Feb 2014, 11:08 »

Dude. No. No one's killed each other over speed skating. Football riots in the U.K. are a thing, and you do not see the kind of behavior focused around Texas football outside of suicide doomsday cults.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #183 on: 21 Feb 2014, 12:04 »

Being the sole Canadian expat on an American Camp watching that game kinda killed the buzz.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #184 on: 21 Feb 2014, 12:09 »

Sounds like someone needs to be sent back to re-education.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #185 on: 21 Feb 2014, 12:45 »

And that's pretty much exactly why I opted for Army over USMC.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #186 on: 21 Feb 2014, 12:48 »

No no, this is just an issue with your citizenship, you need to relearn 'Murica
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #187 on: 21 Feb 2014, 13:07 »

Apart from two decades of Canadian citizenship outweighing a year and a half of American, Team Canada has Toews, Keith, and Sharp, whilst Team USA only has Kane. Advantage, Canada.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #188 on: 21 Feb 2014, 13:46 »

I know that's exaggeration and I know it's the Olympic championship but...is it really that big a deal to Canada as a country? I mean sports are fun to watch but are they really that important to people? I've never really understood this.
I sympathise. In Australia a single horse-race, the Melbourne Cup, is said to "stop the nation". It draws TV viewership of an estimated three million people on a weekday afternoon, despite being about as exciting as watching grass grow (though watching horses run always has an appeal, I think). I've never worked in an office that didn't hold stupid betting pools on the race, and failing to be excited about it is definitely regarded as slightly unAustralian. I think sport-obsession provides a useful, relatively safe, outlet for primitive tribal instincts. :-D

Congratulations to Canada. It is always nice to see David defeat Goliath. :angel:
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #189 on: 21 Feb 2014, 14:11 »

What on earth was the referee thinking when Elise Christie was penalised AGAIN? If there were a gold medal for stoicism in the face of incredible unfairness and bad luck, she would win it without question.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #190 on: 21 Feb 2014, 15:44 »

I know that's exaggeration and I know it's the Olympic championship but...is it really that big a deal to Canada as a country? I mean sports are fun to watch but are they really that important to people? I've never really understood this.
I sympathise. In Australia a single horse-race, the Melbourne Cup, is said to "stop the nation". It draws TV viewership of an estimated three million people on a weekday afternoon, despite being about as exciting as watching grass grow (though watching horses run always has an appeal, I think). I've never worked in an office that didn't hold stupid betting pools on the race, and failing to be excited about it is definitely regarded as slightly unAustralian. I think sport-obsession provides a useful, relatively safe, outlet for primitive tribal instincts. :-D

Congratulations to Canada. It is always nice to see David defeat Goliath. :angel:

It's Canada and the United States, this is more two Jotunn slugging it out while curb stomping David and his family. :P

I used to like horse racing, then I got into the stuff behind it... now I just feel bad for the horses.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #191 on: 21 Feb 2014, 18:30 »

That was a crappy way to lose a hockey game.

It's the hazard of having two teams pretty much evenly matched going up against each other. One little bounce, and that's the game.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #192 on: 21 Feb 2014, 23:12 »

I think sport-obsession provides a useful, relatively safe, outlet for primitive tribal instincts. :-D
Yup. Europe's been a relatively peaceful place ever since wars were replaced with football matches.

Quote from: Akima
Congratulations to Canada. It is always nice to see David defeat Goliath. :angel:
Not sure about this. I don't know the numbers, but it wouldn't surprise me, if Canadian players outnumber Americans in the NHL.

Any thoughts about the coming medal matches? Canada beat US in regulation, but needed overtime againsta Finland. Finland beat Russia in regulation, but US needed to go to shoot outs  :-D Prolly US is still a favorite to win this one, and it may actually become lopsided. But Finland is in with a chance.

Similarly. Sweden beat Finland in regulation, but Canada needed to work overtime. Does that make Sweden the favorite for the final?
« Last Edit: 21 Feb 2014, 23:19 by Skewbrow »
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #193 on: 21 Feb 2014, 23:22 »

I think sport-obsession provides a useful, relatively safe, outlet for primitive tribal instincts. :-D
Yup. Europe's been a relatively peaceful place ever since wars were replaced with football matches.


Spoken like a man who's never been to a Manchester United match! Up'em Reds!

Also might be nice if you guys could export some of that peace to South America, there's that whole "beheading a ref" incident, and the "hand grenade" incident, and that other beheading...
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #194 on: 22 Feb 2014, 00:12 »

I think sport-obsession provides a useful, relatively safe, outlet for primitive tribal instincts. :-D
Yup. Europe's been a relatively peaceful place ever since wars were replaced with football matches.


Spoken like a man who's never been to a Manchester United match! Up'em Reds!

Also might be nice if you guys could export some of that peace to South America, there's that whole "beheading a ref" incident, and the "hand grenade" incident, and that other beheading...

 :-D :-D Two central American nations actually (Honduras & El Salvador?) actually started a war, because there was some doubt about the outcome of football match. A Columbian player was shot to death for putting the ball in their own net at WCs. Et cetera.. Latin temper?

I meant to support the thought that sports is an outlet for some of the national rivalries/gripes that might otherwise reach a boiling point in a nastier way. But supposedly ("I don't know, but I've been told!") there is some extra charge in the atmosphere whenever Germany plays one of the neighboring countries. In hockey a similar thing happened at the WCs following Warsaw pact tanks nipping the Prague Spring in the bud in the late 60s. Czechoslovakia (and the crowd) put in some extra effort into their games against the Soviets. Bruise count was high.

UK fans are notorious (as are the Turkish). Which is why when Italy hosted WCs, England was put into the group that played their early round games in Sicily. And somehow a rumor got started that the Sicilian mafia is in charge of keeping peace at the stadium.
At the opposite end of hooliganism are the Danish football fans, aka "rooligans" ("rolig" = fun in Swedish/Danish/Norwegian). Yes, loud noises and largish quantities of beer are involved, but absolutely no violence. Just enjoying a fine evening in a fine ball game.

So: "relatively peaceful" as in "no war".
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #195 on: 22 Feb 2014, 00:25 »

Bah. It's not a match without glassing someone.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #196 on: 22 Feb 2014, 01:50 »

this is more two Jotunn slugging it out

You're really big into Norse mythology, right?
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #197 on: 22 Feb 2014, 04:50 »

Apart from two decades of Canadian citizenship outweighing a year and a half of American, Team Canada has Toews, Keith, and Sharp, whilst Team USA only has Kane. Advantage, Canada.

whoa whoa whoa, don't forget Pavelski, Kessel, van Riemsdyk as skaters, and Quick, Howard, and what's his tits from the Sabres as net minders. I am proud of the U.S. team even though Canada definitely nailed it. I'm pulling for a Canuckistani gold this year.
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #198 on: 22 Feb 2014, 06:28 »

this is more two Jotunn slugging it out

You're really big into Norse mythology, right?

Active believer might be the more appropriate term
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Re: Сочи 2014 (Winter Olympics Thread)
« Reply #199 on: 22 Feb 2014, 07:15 »

So... Ready for Ragnarok today?
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