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Rooting for Kwan & Cohen Comebacks

I love the spectacle of figure skating, but ever since Michelle Kwan and Sasha Cohen left the competitive circuit following the 2006 Olympics, the field has been lackluster. Some blame the now not-so-new technical points scoring system (which forces skaters to cram in tricks), but the reality is that no one in the women’s field has been able to convey the artistic elegance and palpable emotion that Kwan and Cohen have in the past (I think Alissa Czisny could fill that gap but – sadly - she invariably melts down.)

Philip Hersh of the Chicago Tribune recently lamented similarly; in particular, pleading for Sasha Cohen to return for the 2010 Olympics. Cohen stated back in October that she’s training for an Olympic bid, and after Darra Torres’ historic performance at the Summer Games this year (she was 41, medaled, and looked fabulous) even Michelle Kwan – who would be an ancient 30 for Vancouver (Cohen would be 26) – has hinted at a comeback.

As much as I dearly miss Michelle (I appreciate her humble nature over Sasha’s diva) I’m skeptical that she could match the tricks of the little ones (even at her peak I held my breath whenever she went for a jump). But damned if I won’t root for her (and Cohen) to try. I miss their artistic and athletic capabilities, not to mention the fact that they’re actually women (not teens) in the field of women’s figure skating.

Image credit: Paul Harvath for US Figure Skating