I’ve been catching up on articles about the final night of ladies figure skating, and I am PISSED at all the negative press and commentary aimed at Mirai Nagasu. She was the THIRD WOMEN IN THE WORLD to land a triple axel in the Olympics, and the FIRST American women to do that EVER. There’s only about 7-8 female skaters in the WORLD who have managed to land it in competitions (though I think there are some Russian juniors doing it, so it’s possible that will increase—though there’s also the possibility that reaching puberty by the time they advance to senior levels may make it harder).
Whatever else happened at the Olympics, that’s an accomplishment. And that jump, in an awesome free skate, played a role in achieving a team bronze.
But, after a disappointing run in the individual events, she made some flippant comments and tried to laugh it off and take it in stride, and people are out to tear her down. To me, it seems the interviewer was aggressively looking for a certain reaction (other skaters with disappointing skates ended the interview in tears), journalists and commenters are pissed that she didn’t produce the requisite tears, regret, and self-blame.
She already had one medal. She’s already finished fourth in a previous Olympics, and once she realized she was out of contention for the individual bronze (unlikely after the short program, and clearly impossible after missing the triple axel at the beginning of her free skate), it didn’t matter what she did, she wasn’t going to achieve anything better than her last Olympic run. I admire the fact that she was just like, whatever, and smiled her way through the rest of the program.
I hope Mirai laughs all the way to Dancing with the Stars. Hopefully with her Adam Rippon as well, because that would be awesome.