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From The Judge's Chair…What Happened With Sam Mikulak's Floor?

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If you happened to watch Sam Mikulak’s floor routine from the Pacific Rim Championships and saw his final score of 14.55 with a D-score of 5.7, you were probably very confused.  His routine was packed with difficulty and, aside from the easy double full dismount, appeared to have everything it needed for a D-score well above 6.0.

 

Sam Mikulak Floor 2012 Pacific Rim Championships Team Finals

 

Let’s take a look at what probably happened.  The calculation below shows his intended D-score:

Difficulty and Connection Points

Skill

Value

Points

Double-Double

E

0.5

Back 1 ½

C

0.3

+

0.1 connection

Front full twisting 1 ¾

D

0.4

Wide arm press

C

0.3 *see below

Front double full

D

0.4

+

0.1 connection

Front full

C

0.3

Back 2 ½

D

0.4

+

0.1 connection

Front 1 ½

C

0.3

Whip back

B

Not needed for difficulty

+

0.1 connection

Tucked Thomas

D

0.4

Back double full

C

0.3

Total Difficulty/Connection

 

4.0

 

 

 

 



Element Groups:

 

Element Group

Point Value

EG 1: Non-acrobatic skills

0.5

EG 2: Forward Acro Skills

0.5

EG 3: Backward Acro Skills

0.5

EG 4: Sideways/Arabian Skills

0.5

EG 5: Dismount (at least D value for the full 0.5 credit; a C value gives 0.3 points)

0.5

 

The wide-arm press handstand fulfills EG 1.

The front full twisting 1 3/4 fulfills EG 2.

The double-double fulfills EG 3.

The Thomas fulfills EG 4.

The back double full partially fulfills EG 5 (0.3 instead of 0.5)

 

Total Element Group Points: 2.3

 

Total Expected D-Score = 4.0 + 2.3 = 6.3

 

He was given a 5.7 instead.  What happened?

 

I believe he didn’t get credit for the wide-arm press handstand.  To get credit, he must hold it for at least one second (although there would be a deduction).  For no deduction, he must hold it at least 2 seconds.  If you watch closely, he has a slight arm bend and struggle while trying to hold it, giving the impression that it never stopped completely for at least one second.  Personally, I would have counted this and taken a deduction rather than taking away credit altogether, but I can see how this was certainly questionable.

 

If we take away the value of this skill, he then counts the whip back for difficulty instead (loses 0.1 for counting a B instead of a C), and he loses the 0.5 for the element group altogether.  Note he does not have another “nonacrobatic skill” to count for element group 1.  If we take away these 6 tenths, the D-score drops from a 6.3 to a 5.7.  Make sense?

 

Not holding a wide-arm press can be an extremely costly mistake, especially if it’s your only non-acrobatic skill.  The tumbling is absolutely fantastic, and I love his overall look here – clean, sharp, and well-presented.  Hopefully Mikulak won’t make this unfortunate mistake again, and we can see this routine score well into the mid-15’s.  I also fully expect he’ll upgrade that dismount to a D skill and gain 0.3 more tenths, giving him a D-score of 6.6.  That’s what he’ll need to prove he can challenge Dalton or Legendre for a spot in Team USA’s Olympic floor lineup.

 

 

More to come on Mikulak, Dalton, and Brooks in my next blog.

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