Post All-Around Reflections.

I’m 99% sure that my co-writer is delivering her offspring. 3 days is probably the longest I’ve gone without talking to Clara. She said Aliya for a girl, Kohei for a boy. I’m sending her a bottle of tequila, a box of condoms, and this post as a celebratory gesture.

Anytime a major competition is decided by a few tenths, the gymnasticsphere turns into a circus. “Gymnast y was scored too high on this event, gymnast x was ripped off on that event.” It’s inevitable, and I’m guilty as well. It’s still annoying when people with minimal gymnastics knowledge slither out of the sewers once every 4 years to offer up their expertise.

Regardless of varying opinions on scores, I think the judges got the final standings right.

Right from rotation 1, vault ended up being the deal breaker. If Komova had the opportunity to do her vault over, I’m sure she’d jump at it. Komova took not 1, but 4 steps off to the side, eventually saluting off the mat. She could have saved a couple of steps, but that would have been too easy for her. Many whispered that Mustafina would throw the Amanar – luckily she didn’t. Her twisting form gets scrappier the more she twists, and the few tenths she may have picked up weren’t going to be worth the risk. Though knowing Aliya, she might have attempted to get through the rest of the competition in a wheelchair.

Predictably, we all knew that Raisman would drop in the standings after bars. How the judges can still justify that her gnarly routine is worth anywhere near a 14.3 is beyond my realm of comprehension. For those who insist that the Russians have been continuously overscored, I demand that you rewatch her abomination of a bars routine. Preferably in slow motion as punishment for such an inaccurate and biased observation.

Some thought it was suspicious that Gabby’s bars score rose a good .5 since earlier rounds, but Mustafina & Komova’s scores increased as well – Mustafina’s considerably. All 3 routines looked pretty much the same to me as in previous rounds, so I don’t think the judges were trying to throw anyone in particular a bone. Inflate 1, inflate 4, right?

Beam has been Aliya’s achilles heel since the start of the competition, and today was no different. I winced when she came off on the arabian. Rather than seize the opportunity, Raisman fell all over it – literally. Komova was gorgeous on beam with the exception of a couple of bobbles – nothing we’re not accustomed to. Her beam score has been questioned by some, but really, her individual skills are the cream of the crop, and virtually deductionless. The bulk of her deductions come from the inevitable wobble(s). If this gymnastics thing doesn’t work out, the girl really could teach a tutorial on how to do a proper sheep jump. Gabby wasn’t exactly flawless either, but made less mistakes (and more saves) than Komova, so the judges had no choice but to go up with her score.

Had Aliya stayed on the beam, I think she would have made more of an effort to nail all of her tumbling passes. Twisting form aside, it was still a lovely performance. It’s taken me awhile to warm up to her music, but it’s become one of my current favorite sets.

Raisman’s first tumbling pass seems to have become a problem for her. To me, it’s the only thing that makes her fkiir routine remotely special. It’s certainly not creative choreography, or her non-existent ability to at least hit cues of the music. Instead of a front layout tacked onto her double arabian, she took a bounding leap forward. Her (generous) 15.033 probably isn’t going to be enough to get her on top of the floor podium. Had she done the same routine as in qualifications, the bronze would have been hers outright rather than being decided by a toe-break.

Regarding the tie-breaker, I don’t like the rule. In fact, I wasn’t even aware of it until the competition ended. It seems somewhat silly in an All-Around competition to drop a score. All-Around is 4 events. But that’s the way the cookie crumbled. I wish that Aliya & Aly could both keep their bronze medals if for no other reason than for people to keep their yaps shut. If we want to get technical, Aliya fell off beam and had 3 other solid events. Aly fell on the beam, and performed a bars routine that had no place at a Parkette’s zone meet, let alone an Olympic All-Around Final. Aliya is the rightful owner of that medal under the rules, case closed.

What impressed me most about Komova’s floor besides the fact that she increased her score by 1.2 since qualifications, was it’s sheer quality. And under pressure. No lazy landings, no half-assed choreography. She ended the All-Around like a true champion with the most stunning floor routine of the evening. A personal best, if nothing else.

As far as the argument over artistry goes, though I prefer Komova’s style (balletic/very Russian) to Gabby’s (spunky/very American), under this code, it’s difficult to differentiate what is artistic and what isn’t. How many years of arguing have we dedicated to this very topic?

Gabby’s floor isn’t the kind of routine that I’m personally blown away by, but it’s the kind of performance that the fair-weather every 4 year fan really gets into (even my grandmother liked it). She works to suit her abilities (it’s not as if she’s trying to channel Mikhail Baryshnikov), and looks like she’s having fun out there. Plus, she’s cute. People eat that shit up.

There’s no denying that Komova is the more artistic gymnast of the two. But artistry isn’t what cost Vika the gold medal – it was the 4 steps she took after her vault. That wasn’t her most “artistic” moment.

You can’t reward one thing and ignore the other.

There’s a difference between being admittedly biased, and allowing your biasism (is that a word?) completely cloud reality. Gabby was simply the better gymnast yesterday.

Now for some awards.

My “dumb bitch of the day” award goes to Elfi Schlegal for referring to bars as Deng Linlin’s “best event.” Why, because she’s Chinese? Beam is her best event by far. That’s like me saying Kim Kelly has gorgeous split leaps.

The coveted “dick of the day” award goes to none other than John Geddert. He had the audacity to retweet this yesterday :

Clearly the judges want Komova to win. She has been over scored with large errors the entire Games. #olympics #gymnastics #facts
Retweeted by John Geddert

Didn’t the American girls have to attend media training? Where was he? That Grecian Formula that he doesn’t use nearly enough of must have soaked through what little brain cells he has left. So utterly classless. It’s not as if Alexandrov is signing up for a Twitter account and suggesting that Jordyn Wieber learns how to hit 180 degrees on a split leap.

My “comeback kid” award would have went to Aliya if she didn’t insist on stankin’ up her beam sets throughout the entire competition. Instead, it goes to Sandra Izbasa. I recall several readers finding Clara’s insistence that she could crack the top 5 humorous. Sure, Iordache and Jinnan weren’t nearly up to scratch, but Sandy performed well beyond all of out wildest expectations. 58.55 isn’t too shoddy of an All-Around total for a two-eventer.

See yinz in event finals.

Bronwyn

 

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38 responses to “Post All-Around Reflections.

  • Alison Clements

    Even if it is ‘after the event’ I’d love to know what your pre-event predictions for the beam and floor would have looked like. You can always back-date them, we won’t tell ;-)

  • Stoi!

    Tim, we’ve not quit but I’ve not had a lot of free time since having the baby! We’re planning to do some end of year and end of quad reviews though, and I hope to find time to give my thoughts on the Olympics eventually. even if it is in about October!
    C

    • Anonymous

      Well we all look forward to your new posts, whenever they come! As someone said, I’m going through quite a snark and simply HILARIOUS post withdrawal. I’ve been reading your old posts to keep me alive, which also keep me sufficiently entertained. However, some new stuff would be awesome!! Like the horror of the Olympic FX final which still makes me cry…and not cry happy tears.
      Also, Clara, congrats on the baby! If it’s a girl I hope you did name her Aliya :) Hopefully Bronwyn can keep us entertained while you bond with your bundle of joy :)

    • M

      lol, take all the time you need. Not sure what people expect since you just had a newborn.

  • Tim

    you quit blogging?

  • Todd

    Just a comment on Raisman’s bars routine, I went to NBC website and watched many of the girls who had similar scores to hers. I saw the same poor execution. Not sure why you comment so harshly on her routine, if you watched the other low 14 bars routines, you would see the same quality… poor

  • Sasha

    First off, congrats on the kid. What with a baby and post-Olympic fatigue the lack of blogging is understandable. That said, I do hope you continue with Stoi! Without you two I’m developing a serious snark deficiency and it’s making me all pale and sickly.

  • Stoi!

    Hi anonymous
    I’ve been rather quiet on the blogging front as I had a baby 4 weeks ago and as a consequence haven’t had much time or headspace! But I did get to watch all the gymnastics, as she kindly arrived between the AA and EFs. Fuck knows where Bronners has got to. Probably still wetting my baby’s head. Speaking of Aly Raisman, I was in slow labour during the AA and do you want to know what makes her bars even worse? Watching them whilst contracting.
    C.

  • Anonymous

    what happened to you guys? we miss you and your humor/sarcasm!!!! we all anxiously await another post, especially what you have to say about raisman murdering floor by winning

  • pm

    In vault, it seemed that Komova did step out 4 steps, but after the 1st step, Komova began to hold up her hands to show that she had finished the routine, thus she had only 0.1 or 0.3 score deducted. Her landing (a bit towards right) may cost her 0.1 score.
    The remaining 2-3 steps were needed just becoz she stepped on the edge of the mat accidentally after the 1st step, not becoz of poor balance. Also, the width of her steps were small, less than the width of her shoulder.
    Mark deduction in poor landing will be considered independently (not included in the E score)
    Tell me if I am wrong:)

    • A

      Unlike MAG, in WAG VT corridor markings are only used for initial impact. Komova got a neutral deduction (-0.1) for landing close to the corridor line, but additional steps are scored the same regardless of locality and are deducted from the E-score.

  • Alex

    Geddert’s comments don’t even upset me. He has been an idiot for the past years and always will be.

  • russiangymnastics

    I really think you should reconsider that “comeback kid” award, Just saying…

    • russiangymnastics

      After all, I was right about USA being as strong as Romania on floor (not like you said in your predictions that oh “As with beam, Romania are well out in front”. USA’s floor total was 45,366 against Romania’s 44,7. OK, you will say that Iordache was injured, add 0,6 more and they are still behind USA or equal. Not to mention the beam, USA was ahead of Romania also (with Iordache’s solid routine!)

      • Catherine

        Quite the hindsight expert. This was written before event finals, and Musty did have shitty beam the whole games, no hiding that. Romania SHOULD have been ahead on floor. They had to use Bulimar with a 5.8 d-score versus Larisa’s full potential of 6.5-6.7, that’s a huge hit. Ponor also did not bring her full difficulty there. USA on the other hand had to hope that Gabby would stay in bounds as that wasn’t a given and Jordyn’s leaps weren’t credited. All indications pointed to Romania being ahead of them on floor. Again with beam, Romania did not bring full difficulty there either.

      • russiangymnastics

        Catherine, what does Musty have to do with this? What you write, it is only speculation. Please show me Iordache’s 6,5-6,7 floor routine. I said, add 0,6 to what they got, and that is a 15,3 for Iordache. I doubt she would have scored more! The fact that Romania did not bring full difficulty on beam is only because they just don’t have more difficulty. If you have it, show it, like USA do. So much speculation about Romania having a couple of Amanars or Izbasa a Cheng. And they showed a big NOTHING.

      • russiangymnastics

        Oh, and regarding the “hindsight expert” remark, I posted a comment on this site way before the EF (I think it was also before the Olympics started, at a predictions for TF post) that USA is as good as Romania on floor and not way behind as they predicted. It is really difficult on this blog to see past posts, so I hope you will do something about it :)

      • Catherine

        You said Musty should be reconsidered for the comeback kid reward. The reason why she wasn’t after AA is because of the beam that did her in. It is true that her beam sucked the whole games, and her original was written before Musty shone in event finals. That was the point.

        I said potential, not a routine that was actually competed. She has competed a 6.4. Potential upgrades that she missed at the Bucharest friendly were a Gogean after her Silivas and a turn upgrade. Obviously she did not compete anything close to her peak, but coming up to the games people DID expect a super floor from her. Cata showed a Chusovitina on floor in training, and a back tuck which she DID do in event finals. Beam she showed her full twisting double back in event finals. YES they did not show all planned upgrades at all, or vaults. Iordache was hardly in a condition to show her amanar. and Sandra’s Cheng was obvously in need of work anyway.

        It was expected that Romania would show more of their upgrades and more difficulty. They didn’t. This is far from the only blog who expected to see Romania dominate on beam and floor. AFTER it’s over, it’s a bit much to act like those who thought so were delusional or something. Hindsight is a wonderful thing.

      • russiangymnastics

        OK, but my comments regarding beam and floor were BEFORE the games and not after. The Russians also planned more upgrades and didn’t show them so there is no point in saying what a team can or wish to do but what they are actually competing. Kudos to the US gymnasts who compete full difficulty in every meet, no matter how small!

  • Alison Clements

    By the way, this reconstruction of the Team Final in Lego is an absolute scream:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/sport/video/2012/aug/01/brick-womens-gymnastics-usa-gold-video?INTCMP=ILCNETTXT3486

  • Anonymous

    when will we get beam and floor predictions?

    • Alison Clements

      I suspect that at least Clara has got more important things on her mind! We love your blog C & B, but everything in proportion.

      Clara, I hope the birth went well and that your doting husband recorded all of the Olympics for you.

  • kathy

    I really enjoy your blog, and congratulations to your co-blogger on the baby!! and yes, ditto on Geddert. Question — could you share your opinion on why Komova got so many deductions on her floor routine? Thank you.

  • mary

    great post and go vika. shuddup geddert youre just jelly of her getting to AA finals and jordyn didnt.

  • Lizzie

    I felt really terrible for Aly. To be sooooo close to a medal and have it taken away like that. I really wonder, though, if she shouldn’t just try a leap out of that first tumbling pass if she has to take out the front layout. Surely a stag leap or something is worth more (or at least not a deduction) than that big bounding leap? Would that be worth an extra .10?

  • Ksenia Chepur

    http://www.slate.com/articles/sports/fivering_circus/2008/08/down_with_the_perfect_10.single.html
    I think Komova should won ! ANd it’s not because of artistic she is technically stronger ! Since when vault is become the main event where you can get scores higher but event better beam bars and floor is not enough to cover up the mistake on it ! I think Douglas is good but she silver girl : (

  • Zoe

    This is a great blog. I really prefer the Russian gymnasts’ style and grace over the Americans. Viktoria and Aliya are elegant athletes and I only hope they will tour the US in a gymnastic presentation. Gabby Douglas deserves a lot of credit, she did a great job and she is a champion. But the Russians are who I tuned in to watch. Viktoria and Aliya are, and will continue to be, my faves.

  • Catherine

    I agree with the podium, Vika’s vault handed the gold away. But the overscores! Gabby wasn’t the only one, Vika’s vault and Musty’s bars spring to mind. I know they inflated bars scores, but Vika’s went up not that much by comparison to Gabby and Musty. I would have expected they would all have the same increase. Even though it’s a different competition, seeing these inflations kind of tainted the whole thing for me. And then to see Vika crushed all over again. Well done to Gabby on the performance of her life though, not questioning that. Just the scoring in general, which has been all over the place. Aly’s bars outscored DLL and :Larisa, and HQS got slammed on her excellent beam. Not to mention the screenshot of Hannah Whelan’s foot/feet hitting the mat first.

  • M

    lol, Awesome post Brownyn. Hope Clara has a girl, just because her name would be Aliya :)

    I still think Komova should have won, but what’s done is done and I like Gabby. I feel it for Komova and I hope one day she does get that elusive all around gold.

    Glad Raisman didn’t win though! and I definitely don’t know how she got that score on bars. Bars judges were a bit stingy in qualifying and TF so I guess people put pressure on them to start giving better scores or something.

    Ahh, Musty – so stoked for her! Yeah beam was just not happening for her at this Olympics. I think she just doesn’t fully have the confidence back yet for it. However, since she will continue training, would love to see her when she is back 100%. i was proud of Sandra as well, even if I don’t pay attention to the Romanians.

    You forgot some awards:

    Dick of the day – Besides Geddert since he is always a dick, goes to anything to do with NBC and their coverage of Musty. It’s like they want the American public especially those idiots who only watch gymnastics every 4 years to hate her. My word they put her in such a bad light. I am sick of Dim and Elfi!! Also NBC’s coverage is downright awful, so happy I watch things live during the days.

    Dumb bitch of the day also goes to Dim who said something like Musty not doing the Amanar will cost her, failing to mention the fact that she tore her ACL doing it which is why it is better for her to be safe.

    Moment of the entire Olympics so far – Musty and Komova after Komova’s floor. How could anyone not love this? – http://booasaur.tumblr.com/post/28607701710/aliya-mustafina-congratulates-consoles-viktoria#notes

    Either way as much as I love gymnastics – Olympics really are just starting for me with the main course – Athletics baby!!! :D

    • A

      Well, not having a 2.5 did cost her, as she herself predicted prior to competition, IIRC. Had Mustafina scored 15.6 rather than 15.2 on VT she’s leading after UB and it’s a completely different ball game. I don’t have the NBC trio forced upon me, but of all their utterances over the years that’s one of the least objectionable.

      Personally, I struggle to get on the Mustafina bandwagon. They’re hundreds of competitors in the Olympic Village who have struggled through far greater adversity and unlike Aliya they didn’t have access to the best surgeon in the world to get them right, nor the ever generous Russian taxpayer to settle the tab.

  • Gymistoosad

    I have seen few floor routines as nice as Komova’s.Just Where could deductions be found?

    If that just barely scrapes 15 wit all beats me.

    • Ying

      It’s impossible to get the perfect 10 under the current code. Komova did a spectacular routine but still technically deductible (of course the deductions could apply to anyone). In fact her 9.1 execution score is among the top E scores in this quad so there’s nothing to complain. Possible deductions include: 0.1 for her cowboying in the double Arabian, 0.1 for her crossed feet in the triple twist and 0.1 for the hop, 0.1 for cowboying and 0.1 for the flexed toes in her double tuck, 0.1 for her lost of balance in the Memmel turn, and finally 0.3 for the low landing in her double pike. Yes, take the slow motion and you’ll find she landed very low with her chest at the knee level, despite that impressive stuck. A total of 0.9 deduction is exactly what she got.

  • Christiane

    I forgot to say! I thought this whole thing about being in labor was a joke. Is Clara really delivering a baby?? Oh, congratulations to her!!! I never know when you guys are serious… hehe.

  • Christiane

    I agree. As much as I would LOVE to see my golden girl Vika win this thing, I admit her vault was a bummer. If she had vaulted like she did on Team finals… Anyway, her floor was superb and I am proud of Vikita. Very hard to see her sobbing like that though. Man, tell me about a deja vu… gee. When you thought Jordyn being out would save her some tears, there comes Gabby…

    What hurts me about Gabby grabbing the gold is when I see a picture of her like the one on USA front page where she is doing a split with her arms completely crooked; same on the inside picture. It is like she focus on legs and looks at the beam and completely forget to extend her arms. Vika on the other hand… But anyway, what is done is done. Gabby didn’t make any technical error so she got gold. At least she is not annoying. She is cute and cool. Oh, and who thought I would feel bad for Aly…

    At the end, I congratulate Mr. Alexandrov for putting his two AA girls on the podium. And I am so proud of Vika and Musty for fighting for those medals.

  • Lebanks

    I want to start off by saying I wish John Geddert would burn in hell. Ye a lil harsh but the man is rude, unprofessional and looks like a fucking creep!
    And lmao same thing i thought when elfi said Deng’s best routine was bars… Im like this bitch real serious??? nbc needs to hire commentators that KNOw wht their talking about, actually talks about Gymnastics and not the personal lives of each gymnast, talking good good about the americans like their perfect, and talking shit crack on the russians cuz they put artistic into artistic gymnastics.

    I also want to take this time to say… Y does NBC insist alexandrov tells them that mustafina is a diva and blah blah rae rae.. really.. show me the proof. Sometimes i wonder if the russians were to get nbc translated into russian wtf they would think.

    poor baby Vika. Gabby jus had more difficulty that day, but in my heart, Vika is the champion because she showed beauty and strength, the Epitome of what a gymnast should be (lets all remember now its ARTISTIC Gymnastics).

    And last but not least, im still in tears every couple of hours from so much emotion from Musty winning bronze!!!! I amm sooooo happy for her!! I couldnt stop smiling and jumping over the couches screaming yes :D
    Yey aliya! You made le obsessed russian gymfans proud!!!!!

  • Sofia

    Geddert, picking on a 17 year old over the internet is not the sort of thing any dignified human being should be engaging in. #facts

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