2010 U.S. Nationals

Senior Men





Place Skater SP FS
1 Jeremy Abbott 1 1
2 Evan Lysacek 2 3
3 Johnny Weir 3 5
4 Ryan Bradley 6 2
5 Adam Rippon 4 4
6 Brandon Mroz 10 6
7 Grant Hochstein 8 7
8 Armin Mahbanoozadeh 5 13
9 Keegan Messing 12 8
10 Jason Wong 9 10
11 Richard Dornbush 7 12
12 Jonathan Cassar 20 9
13 Tommy Steenberg 16 11
14 Dennis Phan 13 15
15 Douglas Razzano 11 17
16 Parker Pennington 15 16
17 Alexander Johnson 22 14
18 Andrew Gonzales 14 19
19 Shaun Rogers 18 18
20 Michael Solonoski 21 20
21 Wesley Campbell 19 21
22 Daniel Raad 23 22
w Stephen Carriere 17 -

Photos copyright 2010 by George S. Rossano

Short Program

Starting Order - Short Program

1. Wesley Campbell
2. Johnny Weir
3. Douglas Razzano
4. Parker Pennington
5. Jeremy Abbott

6. Michael Solonoski
7. Ryan Bradley
8. Jonathan Cassar
9. Alexander Johnson
10. Keegan Messing
11. Grant Hochstein

12. Stephen Carriere
13. Shaun Rogers
14. Dennis Phan
15. Daniel Raad
16. Richard Dornbush
17. Evan Lysacek

18. Brandon Mroz
19. Armin Mahbanoozadeh
20. Andrew Gonzales
21. Adam Rippon
22. Jason Wong
23. Tommy Steenberg


Short Program Placements
Place Skater
1 Jeremy Abbott
2 Evan Lysacek
3 Johnny Weir
4 Adam Rippon
5 Armin Mahbanoozadeh
6 Ryan Bradley
7 Richard Dornbush
8 Grant Hochstein
9 Jason Wong
10 Brandon Mroz
11 Douglas Razzano
12 Keegan Messing
13 Dennis Phan
14 Andrew Gonzales
15 Parker Pennington
16 Tommy Steenberg
17 Stephen Carriere
18 Shaun Rogers
19 Wesley Campbell
20 Jonathan Cassar
21 Michael Solonoski
22 Alexander Johnson
23 Daniel Raad

Jeremy Abbott

Brilliant performances by the top three men in the short program, put Jeremy Abbott, Evan Lysacek and Johnny Weir well down the road to making the podium and the U.S. Olympic team.  All three broke 80 points and are in range of ending with over 250 points in this event.  Other hopefuls faltered in the short to a greater or lesser extent putting their Olympic dreams at potential ends.  Two recent arrivals to the senior division, Adam Rippon and Armin Mahbanoozadeh, gave performances that show them to be the potential future of Men's skating in the U.S.

Skating second in an event with 23 entries (Ross Minor withdrew several days earlier due to injury), former U.S. Champion (2004-2006) gave a thoroughly committed and enjoyable performance to "I Love You, I Hate You" by Raul DiBlasio.  He opened with three commanding four jumps, triple Luzt - triple toe loop, triple Axel and then triple flip.  All here high and strong, though an edge alert on the flip cost his 0.71 in negative GoEs.  He completed level four spins and level three footwork as he vamped through the remainder of the program.  His program components averaged near 7.5, but several of his marks illustrated how the components are sometime a confusing hodgepodge of opinion.  His marks spanned 2.5 points among the judges, and in transitions marks of 8 and over were accompanied by a 3.75, a 5.50 and a 6.50.  Weir's Short Program score of 83.51 was a career best and put him in first place -- for the next two skaters.

Last to skate in the first warmup, reigning U.S. Champion Jeremy Abbott's "A Day in the Life" routine brought home 87.85 points.  It was a career best for him as well.  He opened with a splendid triple flip - triple toe loop combination, followed by a strong triple Axel.  Both of these received several +2s for GoEs.  Following a change sit spin, he also landed solo triple Lutz.   His spins and steps were called with level threes and fours, and his circular step sequence received an unusual five GoEs of +3.  After completing the first two jump elements Abbott flew through the rest of the program skating with speed, power and enthusiasm.  His component marks averaged near 8.0 and his presentation marks (components 3 through five) were a bit higher, averaging near 8.25.  His performance set a high standard for Lysacek, who would not skate for nearly two more hours, to best.

Lysacek, the 2007 and 2008 Champion, opened with a triple Axel with a flawed landing and a step out.  All but one of his GoEs were at -2 and he lost several points on this element.  He followed with strong triple Luzt triple toe loop, and solo triple flip.  He continued to complete the three spins at level four and the two step sequences at level three.  Afterwards Lysacek said he has been working on increasing the levels of the steps to fours, but he did not achieve that goal in this outing.  Maybe he said, because the new steps were not clean enough to get the credit this time.

What is there to say about Lysacek's "Firebird?"  Fans either love his style (dynamic, powerful) or hate it (flailing, windmill arms)  Either way, he puts out on the ice what the components call for, and he revs the audience up.  His component also averaged near 8.0 though were not quite as high as Abbott in Transitions and Choreography.  He was edged out by Abbot in PC by only 0.84 points.  The decisive factor in this competition, however, was the triple Axel which had it been complete with it's unusual quality would have put Lysacek running nearly even (or even ahead) of Abbott.

The second tier of contenders struggled in the Short Program to one extent or another.  Ryan Bradley opened with a nice quad toe loop - triple toe loop, but then followed with only a double Axel, and later popped a triple Lutz to a double.  His performance was the typical accomplished and entertaining Bradley effort, but without the jump points, he ended up in sixth place, 13 points back from the leaders.

Bradon Mroz attempted a quad toe loop combination, but a poor landing and a hand down resulted in negative GoEs and the loss of nearly four points.  He followed with a single.  At element four he fought back turning triple Lutz into a combination with triple toe loop.  His performance lacked passion, and average only 6.0 in components.

Stephen Carriere, who won the bronze medal in 2008 but then placed ninth in 2009, sits in 17th place.  He popped his opening triple Axel attempt to a single, and from that point his Olympic dream was over for this year. He had a reach on Triple Lutz - double toe loop which was scored negative.  Of the jumps, only triple loop was well done.  The entire performance was off, which showed in components that averaged just below 6.0.

Among the relative newcomers, Adam Rippon placed fourth.  He started strong with Triple flip - triple toe loop, and then triple Axel.  On triple Lutz he had a weak landing and nearly skate into the wall on the landing.  Then, in the following step sequence, he fell about one-quarter of the way into it and got hammered with GoEs of mainly -3.  (Which seems a little bit harsh to me as a scoring concept, but never mind.)

Rippon was clearly disappointed in his performance, but strong component marks, averaging near 7.2 helped bring him a total score of 72.91.  His chances of making the top three this year are at best slim, but now that he has both triple-triple combinations and triple Axel he has the opportunity to entrench himself up as part of the future in the Men's event.

Potentially joining Rippon in the wave-of-the-future club was Armin Mahnanoozadeh, who placed fifth.  Mahnanoozadeh landed four triple jumps, with triple Axel, triple flip - triple toe loop, and triple Lutz.  Two of his spins were called level four, but the remaining spin and the two sep sequences were only level two.  His components averaged near 6.25.

The Men's final will be held Sunday, January 17.


Free Skate

Starting Order - Free Skating

1. Jonathan Cassar
2. Daniel Raad
3. Michael Solonoski
4. Alexander Johnson
5. Wesley Campbell

6. Andrew Gonzales
7. Stephen Carriere
8. Shaun Rogers
9. Tommy Steenberg
10. Parker Pennington
11. Dennis Phan

12. Keegan Messing
13. Brandon Mroz
14. Douglas Razzano
15. Jason Wong
16. Richard Dornbush
17. Grant Hochstein

18. Ryan Bradley
19. Adam Rippon
20. Armin Mahbanoozadeh
21. Evan Lysacek
22. Johnny Weir
23. Jeremy Abbott



Free Skating Placements
Place Skater
1 Jeremy Abbott
2 Ryan Bradley
3 Evan Lysacek
4 Adam Rippon
5 Johnny Weir
6 Brandon Mroz
7 Grant Hochstein
8 Keegan Messing
9 Jonathan Cassar
10 Jason Wong
11 Tommy Steenberg
12 Richard Dornbush
13 Armin Mahbanoozadeh
14 Alexander Johnson
15 Dennis Phan
16 Parker Pennington
17 Douglas Razzano
18 Shaun Rogers
19 Andrew Gonzales
20 Michael Solonoski
21 Wesley Campbell
22 Daniel Raad
w Stephen Carriere

Jeremy Abbott gave a commanding performance to win his second National title with a record 263.66 points.  Evan Lysacek and Johnny Weir both skated less than their personal bests, proving a testament to the immense pressure these men where under to reach the podium, keep or recover their National titles, and make the Olympic team.  These three were the favorites to make the team, with only Ryna Bradley thought to have a realistic cance of upsetting the order of things.

Of all the top men, Abbott showed the greatest command of the situation.  It was a rock solid performance with not a single negative GoE among his elements.  The base value of his elements was among the highest, and he earned 12.92 GoE points on top of that, the score nearly 90 points in TES.

Abbott opened with a strong quad toe loop, followed buy a clean triple triple flip and then a triple Axel - triple toe loop combination.  He did not repeat the quad, nor the triple Axel, instead repeating triple Luz and triple toe loop.  The second triple toe loop was in his three jump combination, something rarely executed (triple-triple-double combination).  As fine a performacne as it was, he still has room to improve on it, having left several potential jump points on the table, and also executing mostly level 2 and 3 elements.  Only one spin was called level 4.

Abbott's artistic performance was also rock solid, skating with speed and confidence throughout.  His component marks were in the mid to upper eights and four judges went into the nines for one or more components.  Only one judge found fault, with a 6.75 for Transitions; however that judge marked most of the skaters low in transitions, so that mark may not tell much about the skating.  Abbott was the last to skate, and brought the audience to its feet before the program had ended.  There was no doubt who their pick was, and the judges agreed.

Evan Lysacek placed third in the Free Skate, but held on to second overall by 0.54 points.  In the press conference following the Short Program Lysacek said he would assess whether to include the quad with his coach (Frank Carroll) the day of the competition.  It was generally assumed this meant he probably would not attempt it, but having to skate before both Weir and Abbott, and thus not being in the position of knowing if he would need it or not when he stepped on the ice, that must have complicated the decision.  As the event ultimately unfolded, Lysacek did need a quad if his goal was to recapture the National title.

Lysacek opened with an attempt at Quad toe that was downgraded.  Had he landed it, it would not have resulted in enough points for victory on it's own, but might have changed the dynamics of the remainder of the program, which was just a little off throughout.

The quad was followed by a clean triple Lutz - triple toe loop combination and then triple Salchow.  Later in the program he landed triple Axel - double toe loop which had minor issues on the landings, and followed that by doubling a triple loop.

The errors in the jumps did not completely disrupt the presentation of the program, but even there the performance lacked his usual power and intensity.  His component marks were mainly in the mid-eights and one judge went to a nine for Presentation.  Though a setback, this performance does not knock him out of the running for an Olympic medal, with a month yet to prepare.  One should also remember that U.S. Judges and ISU judges frequently do not see eye-to-eye when it comes to American skaters sent out into international competition.

Johnny Weir placed fifth in the long and third overall, holding third place by 6.12 points over Ryan Bradley.  Weir started strong, but did not sustain the performance.  Following the Short Program he said he would not attempt a quad in the Free Skate, and he kept to his plan.  He opened with clean triple Flip and then triple Axel - double toe loop and triple Salchow.  His second triple Axel was popped to a single, and that seemed to take a bit of the wind out of his sails.  Later in the program he landed four more triples, though on triple Lutz - triple toe loop he stepped out of the toe loop landing.  For his spins and steps he receive two level 4 calls and three level 3.

Weir's program was well presented through the first half; but though he maintained focus throughout, despite the technical errors, the second half of the program was not up to it's full potential.  His component marks were mainly in the mid to upper sevens, with a smattering of marks of 8.00-8.25, and three judges dinging him in Transitions with marks in the sixes.

Ryan Bradley placed second in the free skate with a delightful program of Baroque era music.  He opened with a clean quad toe followed with a clean quad toe - double toe combination.  With three clean quads in this competition and two in combination, Bradley is currently the king of the quad in the U.S.  They serve him well in getting him close to the top three and a chance at making the Olympic team, but without triple Axels to back them up, his opportunities are restricted.  In addition to the two quads he landed five other triple jumps.  His spins were called levels 3-4 and his steps level 3.

Bradley's program as a Baroque era courtier was thoroughly enjoyable.  He maintained character throughout, and as the style of the music changed his character changed with it.  His component marks were mainly in the upper sevens and low eights.  He averaged around an 8.0, except for Transitions which were near 6.5.  The program develops its tone mostly form body and arm movements and not from skating movements so no surprise there.  His marks for Interpretation, however, seemed a bit stingy considering how well he captured the several styles and timing of the music.

The Olympic Team was announced after the event, and followed order of finish.  The World and Four Continent teams were not immediately announced.  If any of the three men retire after the Olympics, as is expected, then being named as an alternate to the World Team will have greater then usual significance.  Next in line would be Bradley who placed fourth, and Adam Rippon who placed fifth. If all three men were to retire, Brandon Mroz would be next, having placed sixth in this event.

2010 Senior Men Medalists

Evan Lysacek, Jeremy Abbott, Johnny Weir, Ryan Bradley

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