Saturday, May 26, 2012

US Classic: The Live Blog

Live Webcast (Since no one gets Universal Sports anymore.)

Pre-Meet Notes:

We know that Gabby Douglas will not be doing vault tonight because she repeatedly missed her Amanar in training.  Gabby just needs to get through this meet with hit routines and move on to build her confidence.  They need to sort out the vault, but she is more valuable to the team on bars.  It would be extremely beneficial for her to hit beam, but she remains iffy for that lineup.

Maroney will be doing vault and beam.  She showed good tumbling on floor in training, but they need to keep her in one piece through mid August.

Jordyn Wieber will only be doing bars and beam.  She seems to have a clunky quality shared by Ashley Wagner in figure skating.  Wagner's boots are made of lead.

While I will miss seeing Rebecca Bross' airplane arms and nervous fluttering feet on floor, we will always have Aly Raisman to fill the void.

And here we go.

A close-up shot of Nastia picking her wedgie.  Rebecca Bross abs are looking ridiculous.  Memmel's body always looks exactly the same.

I am loving Gabby's new weave.  It is reminiscent of Diana Ross after her first gold record.

Tim is speaking as though he's never done hundreds of meets before.

I am over Tim's YELLING already.  It is going to a long summer.

Tim is joined by Amanda Borden who is as perky as ever.

Nastia, fix your hair.  You are looking stunning, but fix the hair.

Amanda Borden is still fretting over compulsory vault and her double arabian on floor.

All eyes on the head case: Gabby.  If anyone is going to implode during the process, my money is on Gabby.  My money is also on her to be potentially spectacular.

Anna Li is capable of doing a 7.1 bar routine.  Anna has never been this thin in her entire life.  And Anna misses.  There has been a ton of hype, but she is showing why Martha gave the medal to Alicia.  Anna's swing looked off on bars from the start.  Anna is very glad to be here and should make Trials, but she is a feel good story rather than a contender.  I love watching her perform.  She needs to hit every routine.

Kyla much talent, so little charisma.  I love a switch ring with a flexed foot.  Bent over side aerial.  Foot up on a back tuck.  Wobble on the full turn.  Starting the Trials process on beam is unforgiving.  Stuck double tuck.  It is good to see the fight, but a bigger score would be better.

Sabrina NCAA Vega, like Amanda Borden, should thank her more talented teammates for the rest of her life.  A 1.5TY isn't even guaranteed to get her an alternate spot.

One can never accuse Chellsie Memmel of being top heavy.  Chellsie had a few struggles on beam in training, yet I fully expect her to be able to pull this out.  Team USA was not favored to win gold.  No one though they'd win.  Sorry, Tim.  And Chellsie almost hits the tucked barani she struggled with, but it was low again and she couldn't stay on.  The arabian is stuck, but her back swing down fall looks like nerves and disappointment.  She gets by without a lot of numbers, but this is a hot mess.  Her front tuck is absolutely stuck into a back handspring+layout stepout.  Bad switch half.  Double Pike nearly stuck.  For a one-event effort, this is not good.  I expect them to let her compete at Nationals, but it is based on reputation.

This is the first pancake.  These girls near to burn the first one sometimes.  It is better to be a disaster here.  Frankly, Memmel will have 70% of her yearly numbers in by Nationals.

Jetter is as tan as ever.  She is out of bounds, but it doesn't matter.  Jetter should get the last spot to Trials.  Her triple turn wasn't even close.  I love that there is upbeat music playing, yet gym choreography is irrelevant.  If you're going to do a double tuck, don't flex your feet.  Average effort.  Nothing great, nothing terrible.

GAGE have brought back the loud, hideous leotards.  If only Finnegan has a start value on bars.  She is everything Ross is not.  This routine is aggressive.  She is selling it like it's for sale and the rent is due tomorrow.  Almost ate the mat on her full in dismount, but the routine was a hit.

I love how the loud speaker announces Grace McLaughlin clearly, at which point Tim lets us know we will be going to break.

Nastia Liukin (BB): 14.900.

Kyla Ross (BB): 14.700.

Kyla Ross could be one of Nastia's road-blocks for the team.

Watching Maroney prep for vault is captivating.  Where is that body does she get the block from?  Maroney fully intends to rock this vault and act like it is nothing.

Lovely leotard for Maroney.  I don't need the yellow or the pink, but it is a solid look.  Step forward.  Frankly, she's done it a lot better, but it is steady for this extremely tense day.  She needed to hit this event and did.

And the feed started to freeze before her much-anticipated second fault.  Will she go for the new vault?  16.100 Amanar.  And she does it.  A little low, but a very decent landing.  I wasn't sure if she was going to do the full twist until the last possible second.

And now it is time for Gabby.  I don't hate this leotard.  HUGE piked tkatchev.  GORGEOUS tkatchev+pak.  Best double layout of the year for her thus far.  Gabby can exhale.  That routine is why she is going to London.  Shawn is not ready or giving a shit right now.

Rebecca Bross...and we get to see her vault again...ay dios mio.  She is working her ass off, yet one has to imagine her career is relatively over.  Usual arm wave on the standing arabian.  Small wobble after the aerial.    This routine is looking somewhat like usual Bross.  It is not the confidence we saw in 2010.  Switch ring, picks her leg up like a squatting dog.  Big wobble and arm wave on the side somi.  Stuck punch front.  Double Arabian to her ass and you could see her miss her roundoff technique, as she frequently does.  Valeri just looks at her.

Aly looks tanner than usual.  Monstrous first pass.  Small hop forward.  1.5 through to a double arabian+punch front layout.  Piked Double Arabian+leap.  (Not really connected)  Her leaps are a bit unfortunately.  Triple full, stuck, but slightly shortish.  Double Pike+Saddest Leap Ever.  I don't get the happy vibe from her expressionless celebration of Judaism, but I'm not as perky or as blonde as Amanda.

Nastia manages to look thin in white.  Kudos.

Score Update:

Gabby Douglas (UB): 15.700

Rebecca Bross (BB): 13.200

Anna Li (UB): 14.150.

Nastia is up on the podium looking intense.  She has to feel the energy of her competitors missing their sets.  It is an opportunity, but also a warning.

Elizabeth Price just fell on her first pass on floor.

Nastia Liukin is looking lovely in her signature color.  She had originally though of wearing navy for this meet, but this certainly looks appropriate.   I certainly agree that she should've won beam in Beijing.

Nastia was certainly nervous on beam yesterday.  It has been solid at home.  Gorgeous aerial+bhs+layout steoput.  Slow connection.  I wouldn't give her the switch half connection on a day I was PMSing.  I'm rather pleased with her at the moment.  Nice side somi.  Lovely side aerial.  Didn't really go for the switch ring.  She pulled back on it.  Nearly stuck 2 1/2.  It was low, but she went for it.  God job, Anastasia!!!

This meet is about getting the rust out.  That is a good starting point for Nastia.

Rotation 2

Jordyn Wieber- and she is short on a twist and is rusty as hell on bars.  Komova is smiling right now.  Morgan White double layout.  She didn't go for the full twisting double layout.  John, who has clearly hit the tanning bed for his TV moment this summer, is not pleased.

With Jordyn obviously going to make the team, I think there is a strong case for ditching Raisman and taking the team of Wieber, Douglas, Liukin, Ross and Maroney.  Even if Nastia has to take out the stalders that hurt her shoulder at times, it will be better than Wieber muscling her shitty set and costing us team gold.  Aliya Mustafina is very hopeful that Jordyn will compete bars in Team Finals.

Tarasova's Mink just sent us as a text: "When you are all old gays, promise you won't style yourself like Geddert.  The hair, the tan, the's just all wrong."

Sabrina NCAA Vega- Her swing on bars has moments where it looks like she is a member of the '96 Romanian team.  Had to save a turn, but broke form,.  It looked like she clipped her heels on her low piked tkatchev.  Her full in tuck was close to the bar, lacking amplitude and killing her Olympic dream by the second.

Sarah Finnegan- Tentative triple Humprehy turn, but hit.  Forward on arabian, but stayed on.  bhs+bhs+pikey layout.  Front Aerial+underrotated and stopped.  Little traces of nerves through her skills, yet she walks up on toe at a point for no reason.  Bhs+bhs+double pike.  Not a great set for one of her two best events.  Finnegan needed to hit here.  It was a Courtney McCool in Athens effort.

Kyla Ross- my least favorite Phantom of the Opera ever.  I love that 'starving themselves to acceptable levels of thin' is the international look.  Double Arabian+Big Stag Jump.  Full In+small hop.  I am not feeling the Marlie excitement.  Frankly, her sad excuse for a double L turn is the most entertaining aspect of this routine.  Small issues on the stupid third pass.  Stuck lame double tuck dismount.  This really is 1984.

Aly Raisman was short on her Amanar, but it wasn't as bad as Shawn Johnson.  Did Amanda Borden really just say Aly focuses on her form?  There's a winning endorsement for the value of an ASU education.

Gabby- headcased on her series for no reason.  Gabby cannot do beam in team finals.  Nervy back full, but hit.  Squatting dog leg on switch 1/2.  This is like watching Dawes on compulsory beam.  Low bhs+bhs+double pike.

"Aly Raisman would be a hit as a gay man.  Her ass has muscle gay power bottom written all over it."- Tarasova's Mink

Elizabeth Price had an ENORMOUS block on her Amanar, but got off direction.  She actually out-vaulted Maroney in training at times.  Donna Strauss is not pleased with her for failing to take advantage of her best event.

Anna Li is in a situation Vanessa Atler was in dozens of times...doing beam after a fall on bars.  Will Anna do more than a double full dismount?

14.400 for Gabby on beam.  Definite gift.

Anna raises her arm on a leap, but looks stylist.  Nice Onodi.  Lil bit crazy Kochetkova, but hit.  BHS+layout stepout.  Low switch 1/2.  Anna is hitting, but this routine is a bit of a feel-good story in Reader's Digest.  Big step back on a double tuck dismount, but impressive that she is actually upgrading after all of her injuries.  Good job.

Raisman is going to win this meet by default...again.

I love hearing Tim kiss Shannon's ass.  Shannon just let him know that Alicia only has more WORLD medals.  Too bad Shannon didn't call out the tenth medal for being the joke that it is or the depleted field.  I would've loved her so much more.

At the half-way point: What is the bigger suicide mission, Bross' double arabian dismount or putting Gabby up on anything but bars in team finals.

I love watching Shannon try to be positive about Gabby, yet seeing her be real.  I want my teeth whitened like Shannon.  Why isn't that on her lifestyle website?

Shannon is being as blunt as ever.  Frankly, she'd be a good member of the selection committee.

Has Shannon's hair fully grown back yet?

Tim says we should whack him.  Hell, I'd love to!

Sabrina NCAA Vega- Almost off on the tour jete half.  Missed connection on the switch half.  Vega's confidence looks like she knows her spot has been gone for a year and she is finally accepting the reality.  The double pike dismount started okay and got hideous on the second flip.  Martha is not pleased, but she doesn't look upset either. It isn't like a team member imploded.

Sarah Finnegan-Piked Double Arabian.  Falls out of a humphrey turn on floor.  It serves her right for being a Lauren Mitchell-like tool.  Whip+Double Arabian.  I fucking hate this music.  I love her Armine qualities.  A needless error on a two and a half twist dismount.  I love how Tim pretends she is being amazing.  It is an okay job, but she needs to be crisper to claw her way onto the team.  She is an obvious alternate like Ivana Hong four years ago.  Sadly for her, Al isn't coaching any of the other girls, so an injury isn't guaranteed.

Aly- "You see some form here."  I love that Amanda admits the leg separation on every skill.  Disgusting, but hit. "For Aly that's good...she didn't defecate completely..."

Aly is running like she just watched her own bar routine for the first time and needs to hug the porcelain.

Gabby's ponytail has to be a clip on.  1 1/2 through to a triple full.  Her late-twisted double arabian- out of bounds.  This music makes me want to watch Aly on bars again.  That double L turn wasn't really completed, but they may give it to her.  Stuck full in.  Double Tuck+Leap.  Her floor routine is never as charismatic as one would expect from her.  The tumbling was good minus her bizarre double arabian technique.

Kyla Ross is off to the side on her Amanar.  She landed with forward momentum.  Her vault was off in the air.  It is scary to watch these girls be off on the Amanars after Mustafina at Europeans.

Maroney on beam.  This is not usually her event.  And she misses her flight series and has to redo it.  Pike front+back swing down.  Unfortunately, this is helping Raisman if it comes down between Maroney and Raisman. This team is just not hitting beam today.  Okay side somi.  Wobble on nothing leaps.  Double Pike with a step (after time?)  Amanda Borden doesn't think she's ever seen this many mistakes on this event.  She clearly didn't see Gabby at Nationals last year.  Martha looks PISSED at her girl.  The glasses help Terin look less trashy.

Anna Li should be less focused on her gorgeous floor choreography and more focused on her bar routine.  These other events are a waste of time.  I adore Anna, but every time people got excited about her doing AA at camp I thought "what a waste."  Missed second pass and only did a 1 1/2 through to a back tuck kickout.  The third pass was iffy.  Back full fourth pass.  Disaster.  Martha will leave her out of Trials if she does that at Nationals.

Amanda had to block out those know, the legitimate ones.

Jetter comes to a stop on the high bar.  If she is putting pressure on herself, she is making a mistake.  MLT says she doesn't train it connected.  Way to be comforting.

Listening to Amanda talk about pressure is like listening to a preschool teacher.

"Shawn wasn't this bad on bars, even if we hated looking at her."- Tarasova's Mink while watching Raisman.

14.850 on floor for Gabby...a bit high.

Jordyn needs to put up a good beam routine.  She sis fighting mother nature like Shawn, but she looks fit.  Her connections look better than they have thus far this year.  Cheated (ish)_ side somi.  I love how she lands with a thud on her leaps.  Balance check on her L turn.  Two back handsprings to a 2 1/2 twist+big thud+small hop.

Question of the Day: Why is Anna Li vaulting?  Do another bar routine.

Gabby wasn't supposed to vault, but it looks like they may go for the win.  She does a timer on vault and then comes down.  Will she go for it?

Rebecca Bross has yet to really hit a routine in competition this year.  I for one have never thought Bross could win the Olympics.  Never.  Never ever.

I love how USAG pretends that this meet has legitimate rules and won't let Gabby vault.

Bross is hitting her difficult skills and is still fighting.  I admire her fight for sure.  Though she is focusing on two events, it looks like she has actually gotten sloppier on fault.  Chest low and step forward on her dismount, but hit.  Minimal love from Valeri.

Aly Raisman...Can she make a claim to be the third beamer in Team Finals?  Consistent acrobatic elements.  She has to have taped down her boobs today Gedevanishvilli-style.  She is a real problem for Maroney and Ross.  This is why she is seen as a lock.  Hit.  Solid.

Nastia and Bross are speaking.  That doesn't look like it happens every day.  It is amazing how relaxed and happy Nastia looks, while Bross' looks as though she has been going through it for years now.

15.300 for Bross on bars.  That is solid.

It is questionable if bars is the weakest event with how the girls have been doing on beam.

15.000 for Jordyn on beam.

Lovely touch by Nastia.  Such grace.  I am reminded of the time when Nunno applauded Shannon Miller's touch and she gave him the look of death.

Kyka Ross on bars.  After an iffy vault, she needs to hit this to get out of the alternate zone.  She has potentially looked off a tad on bars, but she is hitting every handstand.  Double Layout.  Stuck.  That definitely helped her cause.

15.000 for Raisman on beam.

Did Finnegan go?

Is this the last time we'll ever see Memmel and Liukin in warm ups together?  Frankly, I expect them to allow Chellsie to compete at Nationals despite today's disastrous effort.

15.450 for Ross on bars.

Sabrina NCAA Vega on floor.  She really loves to split her legs on the second salto of any double pike pass.  Double L Turn...much better than Gabby's.  2 1/2+Front Layout.  This repetitive music loses my interest.  Double Pike+Leap.

Teodora Ungureanu has aged to hag status over the last three years.

14.85 for Vega on floor.

Despite her good bar routine, Kyla Ross didn't manage to beat to Raisman.  That is certainly a wasted opportunity. Aly's floor is loaded with difficulty.  Beam definitely cost her, as well as an iffy vault. much better than three years ago.  She looks so much more confident than she has in years.  Having this under her belt changes everything.  I'm glad that she's being honest that she'd be upset not making it.

Aly Raisman interview...

Let the speculation begin!

Update:  Chellsie Memmel's petition to Nationals has been denied!


  1. and memmel's off. haven't seen a clean routine yet...

  2. I personally thought that nastia looked out of shape in white. In pink she looked great. It is amazing what 4 minutes of starvation can do!
    Nastia was overscored.
    Amanda is boring as shit.

  3. After Raismans vault and Ross' floor, I'd take Raisman. Ross is good but boring! Raisman is more likely to hit big.

  4. What a shame that anna li wasted 4 of her best years training under val. She could have been an olympian.

  5. it is great that shannon miller is so damn bitchy. She is making a big deal out of the fact that Sac has more world medals then she does. Oh well, I am glad she has some fight. She will need it, because of her cancer, she will likely be dead in 4 years.

  6. do they not realize their mics on on? the classic is always one hot ass mess in terms of professionalism (but then again, I've learned to expect nothing less from everyone's favorite commentators)

  7. the open mics are killing me

  8. The biggest tragedy of all time is the fact that fat ass Amanda Borden made the olympic team.

  9. Marta won't leave Aly home. She's worth a point more on floor compared to Kyla, and her difficulty on beam usually makes up for her form - although I don't think she'd be needed for TF given Gaby, Nastia, and Jordyn. Assuming Nastia hits bars, the last spot comes down to Ross/Maroney.

  10. Seriously, what the HELL is with the girls' hair??? Either do a bun or do a ponytail. Save the half-arsed updo for when you're mopping a floor. Please tell me they won't do that in London. Good gawd.

  11. what the hell was that from anna li?

  12. Oh well Anna, we never thought you could do it anyway.

  13. great wofford puts up one of the best beam scores all day (apparently) and they don't even show it

  14. omgggggg these mics literally cannot deal with this. tim is a space cadet

  15. How did the clubfoot raisman beat nastia on beam.

  16. And USA Gymnastics' live scoring is utter bullshit -- forever timing out, showing each rotation completely detached from each other. Massive fail.

  17. Surprised at Geddart being angry with Jordyn after UBs.

    I need a calculator. If Gabby had vaulted (& stood up) her 2.5, could she have won?

    Why didn't Sarah Finnegan vault? Does she have an amanar?

    Team: Gabby, Nastia, Jordyn, Aly...and....???? Maroney for vault OR an AA'ish girl who can swing bars? Finnegan? Kyla?

  18. If Gabby had stood up her Amanar she would have needed a 15.4 or better to win.

    So yeah, she would have won.

    Raisman can't touch her AA if she hits. Or even if she doesn't let's be honest. Raisman hit all four and Gabby put hands down on beam and still would have beaten her, so...

  19. Tarasova's Mink just sent us as a text: "When you are all old gays, promise you won't style yourself like Geddert. The hair, the tan, the's just all wrong."

    I think you forgot to mention the color coordinated watch and ring he was wearing as well.

  20. an old geddert still looks better than many young gays, look in the mirror plz

  21. CAN SOMEONE PLEASE TELL JOHN GEDDERT to take out that Clear Hip 1/1 after the Maloney... It's a disaster waiting to happen! She has always been shaky on that skill. I know it's an important connection, but she loses a minimum of 0.5 in execution every single time coz she never finishes in handstand!

    Wieler 1/2 (D) + Maloney (D) + Bail (D) + Ray (C) = 0.3 CV...

    Maybe she can connect her Toe on circle 1/1 (D) + Tkatchev (D) into a Pak salto (D)... 0.2 CV

  22. ha gotta love the young gays who think geddert is actually a step down from their style, bless their hearts :) they have weir as their style icon