The Balance Beam Situation

Because gymnastics is a comedy, not a drama

Worlds 2018 – Men’s Team Final

Men’s team final!

Remember: We’re working under the new team final format now, where the teams alternate routines rather than doing three in a row. I really like the idea of this format in terms of creating an actual back-and-forth sporting event but am interested to see how it plays out.

On the 8 teams here, only Sam Mikulak and Nikita Nagornyy will be called upon to compete all six events.

They’re trotting out Terry, Tim, and Nastia to talk about how the US is usually terrible might not be today…or something.

Now they’re like, “Alright, enough of that racket. Let’s talk about Simone.”

The Netherlands should have a tattoo guide. I feel like there are 78 more than usual, like Casimir’s hair border.

Rotation 1

Kohei – PH – super strong, smooth, great height over the horse – Kohei things. Great.


13.933 for Lankin on FX. Wanted more. 0.300 ND

Gischard – VT – Kas 1.5, lunge forward and to the side, leg crossing

Xiao – FX – 3.5 to 1/2, excellent – 2.5 to rudi, small hop – DLO, step back with arm wave – punch randi and FALLS! – what even was that??? 3/1, slightly short, hop forward

13.566 horse hit for Moldauer

Nagornyy – FX – triple back, bounce backward and OOB – nailed double front – double double tuck, solid – 1.5 to full to 1/2, stuck – open full in side pass, small hop – 3/1, stuck. Did struggle on the triple back, but the rest was great.

14.600 for Nagornyy

Netherlands 42.466 on vault. A few tenths better than qualification.

Lin Chaopan OOB on floor.

Hall – SR – good hold on these strength elements – smooth straddle planche to L sit – double double tuck, stuck. Really good.

13.966 for Lin.

14.033 for Yoder.

Tanigawa – PH – not as high over the horse as Kohei, a little floopy in the legs, but no real problems.

14.666 for Dalaloyan. So yeah, advantage Russia, as expected on

BART – VT – Kas 1.5, small hop forward, pretty much around – tucks on the block –

13.600 for Tanigawa

Mikulak – PH – annnnnnd he’s off – right off on handstand circles – no chance. Oh, Samtopher – repeats the skill and it’s fine – has to really fight through the dismount handstand.

Just 13.033 for Mikulak

So that’s one rotation down.

1.Russia – 43.199
2. Brazil – 42.899
3. Netherlands – 42.466
4. Great Britain – 41.766
5. Japan – 41.733
6. Switzerland – 41.399
7. China – 40.798
8. USA – 40.632

Most pleased about that rotation will be Japan, 3 points better than on horse on day 1. Russia will also enjoy the size of lead over a Chinese team that struggled on floor, even though both were weaker than in qualification. US improves by nearly 2 points on horse even though Sam fell, telling you how rough it was the first time around.

Sun – PH – was going very well then flat tires halfway through on one pommel

Remember how we thought China was going to win? Eesh.

Hall – VT – Kas 1.5 – nice – small crossover step

13.833 for Modi on rings. 13.066 for Sun Wei.

Nagornyy – PH – a little ankle on circling, good difficulty – massive straddle on travel but keeps going – hits the routine, but will get hit for that major interpretive sculptural leg moment

13.133. Really low.

13.366 for Moldauer on rings. Similar struggle to the first day. Interested that they went with him instead of Yoder there when they even said he was having injury issues affecting him on rings.

Cunningham – VT – hop forward – Tim and Nastia’s summary: “SIMONE’S IS BETTER GET OUT”

Zou hits PH for China for 14.666. They needed that. Badly.

Tanigaway hits double double tucked for Japan. Someone showed up today.

Kuksenkov – PH – great line overall – has a couple knee moments, but small – just does push himself up to handstand and does not go for his typical dismount

14.266 for Mikulak on rings.

Hegi – PB – peach 1/2 with a huge arch in handstand and a couple hand placement adjustments – good high front straddle – tippelt – stutz – double front 1/2, step.

14.166 for Xiao

Belyavskiy – goes through super smoothly, so much better than his horse in qualification. Good. Or not. Pretty much the same score. Pommel things?

Kohei nails his double double tuck on rings and isn’t even really limping this time

After 2

GB – 85.666
Brazil – 84.956
Japan – 84.282
Netherlands – 83.765
Switzerland – 83.665
Russia – 83.664
China – 82.696
USA – 82.097

Japan is up with the teams that have already done vault and has not already done vault. Japan much more consistent than Russia or China so far. But these standing are meaningless until everyone has vaulted.

Even though we’ve seen China be disastrous, China’s FX+PH total here is better than it was in qualification, and Russia’s is quite a bit worse.

Rotation 3

Kenzo – VT – TTY, good – a little short this time with a small hop forward –

14.966 for Kenzo. 14.600 for Lankin.

Fraser – PB – leg break on a front toss – giant to one rail is nice – peach 1/2, quick and good – back tuck to arms, good – tippelt, fine – stutz, good – double front 1/2, short with a large hop to the side.

Moldauer – VT – Kas 1.5, nice stick, looked like he didn’t think he would stick as he was twisting into the mat, but held on.

Rijken – HB – layout tkatchev – tkatchev – 1.5 – tak 1/1 extremely late, as is the tak 1/2 – Tim thinks Bart is still to come, but he already went – DLO 1/1, stuck.

The routine selection and speed on this world feed has been quite poor. They’re showing the wrong routines at the wrong times and not enough of them.

Van Wicklen 14.733 for Dragulescu. These are improved vault scores from day 1

Sun – SR – hop back on double double tuck, fine job

Bragger – HB – nice Cassina and Kolman – layout tkatchev – does struggle swinging out of a release catch – DLO 1/1, stuck – some errors toward the end there – the earring is everlasting

Dalaloyan – SR – really strong and secure maltese work – cross is nice – small dip in straddle planche but OK – DLO 1/1, stuck. Good.

Epke – HB – Cassina – Kolman to Gaylor, great – tak 1/1 is the usual crazy – tak 1/2 – hpp full – DLO double twist, tries to stick, small step back

Tanigawa just does get around his front double pike, large bound forward

Bitencourt – PB – peach – diam, slow but got it there in the end – elbow bend in handstand – some big arching in a full twist – gets it back on track on tippelt – double pike, hop

Fall for Bevan on PBars

14.366 for Mikulak on vault.

Hegi – HB – giant Yam 1/2 – tak 1/2 to Def, nailed – Kolman, smooth – tak 1/1, some arch – Yam – hop full – DLO 1/1, finished too early with a step back, but a good one

After 3

Japan – 128.414
Russia – 127.365
Great Britain – 126.465
USA – 125.829
China – 125.569
Netherlands – 125.264
Switzerland – 124.798
Brazil – 124.630

Japan moves into first after vaulting. Moment of truth for China will be the next two rotations, potentially huge scores on vault and PBars.

Terry sassing the world feed hard

Lin – VT – Kas 2/1 – short with a lunge forward – legs in the air. 14.566

Nagornyy – VT – Dragulescu – STUCK – a massive amount of cowboying in the air, but an amazing landing

Nastia thinks he got deducted too much, ignoring the cowboying. #Projecting

Just 12.866 for Modi on PBars

15.066 for Dalaloyan on vault. Russia nailing it. We’re watching Tanaka prep PBars. FUN.

That’s a stuck TTY from Dalaloyan. Dayum.

Tanaka – PB – Attempts peach 1/1, can’t control it on one rail and ones off the bar – redoes the peach 1/1 and it’s a mess as well but he gets through it – double pike, hop forward. Disaster for Japan.


Russia will have nearly 2 points on China after vault.

Caio Souza goes over the wrong way on HB but covers

14.300 from Moldauer. Lower than day 1.

Kohei – PB – peach 1/2, good – peach – lovely back pike – tuck 1/2 to arms – double tuck, awesome – tuck 1/2, front straddle, all great – double pike, small hop. Good.

14.500 for Kohei.

Oof. 11.966 fro Bevan on HB.

Mikulak – PB – lowers to arms on healy accidentally, has to muscle himself back up – peach 1/2 to peach to huge tuck 1/2 – front straddle good – great rhythm on Bhavsar – stutz, double front 1/2 and stuck

Ooof. 10.666 for Rijken on floor.

Still 14.833 for Mikulak on PB. Wouldn’t really know he struggled on his first element.

Kas 1.5 for Lankin – step forward – good direction – some leg crossing

Hall – HB – great Cassina – Kovacs, solid – Kolman, hit – tak 1/1, late – hop full – DLO double twist, lunge back

Tanigawa – PB – peach 1/2, small adjustment – Bhavsar, good swing – tippelt – stutz, clean – front straddle – double front 1/2 out, good stick

How much the trio hates CA is a really fun side story of this broadcast.

After 4

Russia – 171.920
China – 170.001
Japan – 169.046
USA – 167.528
Brazil – 166.163
Switzerland – 166.097
GB – 165.530
Netherlands – 163.696

Russia leads China by 1.9 heading to the final two events, PB and HB. On those events in qualification, China outscored Russia by 1.7.

Rotation 5

Kenzo – HB – Yam – piked Kovacs, good – good regular Kovacs as well – DLO double twist, hop forward. Clean and well done.

Nagornyy – PB – peach 1/2 to healy, excellent – peach 1/2 – Makuts, super clean – diam, right on – double front 1/2, really short with a big lunge forward – amazing on the bars though

Nagornyy still goes 14.766, but China will be like, “Psh”

Deng – PB – huge pike 1/2 to arms – peach 1/2 – peach – diam, right on – frotn straddle to arms, strong – bhavsar – tippelt – healy – double pike, swims to hold the stick. China has arrived at its good part.

Tanaka – HB – Cassina, caught – kovacs, a little close – Kolman, hit – 1.5, late because 1.5 – tak 1/1 – tak 1/2 – giant full – DLO 1/1, small step – great routine

Belyavskiy – PB – diam, a little short of vertical – good tippelt – super flair on bhavsar but then he definitely brushed the mat on the swing through – stutz to one – stutz – just some short verticals in here – double front 1/2 out, stuck

Modi – HB – tak 1/2 – tkatchev, a little close – layout tkatchev – layout tkatchev to mixed – tkatchev 1/2 – endo full pretty late – DLO double twist, stuck landing. Form things but he did what he could do there.

14.700 for Belyavskiy.

Lin – PB – double tuck, good – peach 1/2, good vertical, some arch – front straddle – bhavsar, smooth – tippelt, very smooth – double tuck, step back

15.100 for Lin.

Uchimura – HB – piked kovacs, so good – Cassina, hit – Kolan, biggggggg – late 1.5 because 1.5 – great tak 1/1 – Yam – tak 1/2 – DLO double twist, two small hops back.

Dalaloyan – PB – WHAT ARE YOU RUSSIA – falls on his immediate swing up, basically Shayla-ed PBars – anyway, he starts his routine again and it’s of course perfect – stuck landing.

Mikulak – HB – Cassina, nice – Kolman, hit – layout tkatchev – tkatchev – tkatchev to mixed – ZLM – tak 1/2, good vertical – stalder – DLO double twist, sticks

Zou – PB – Makuts, good – diam, right on top – peach 1/2 – massive front straddle to swing through – bhavsar – tippelt – his handstands are all perfect – double front 1/2 out with step back and lean correction

China will move into first after this rotation.

China takes the lead and will keep it with a hit HB in the final rotation.

After 5

China – 216.134
Russia – 215.186
Japan – 211.645
USA – 209.028
GB – 208.129
Brazil – 208.095
Switzerland – 203.762
Netherlands – 201.762

Rotation 6

Tim thinks Russia has the advantage over China on HB. “I would have to disagree, Tim.”

Sun – HB – tak 1/1 fairly late – layout tkatchev to tatchev 1/2 – layout tkatchev 1/2 – Yam – will get slammed for late pirouettes but super skills – step back and a lean on dismount. 1 down 2 to go for China.

Van Wicklen 14.033 on floor

Sun 14.2

Belyavskiy – HB – some late early verticals – lay tkatchev – tkatchev to mixed – tak 1/2, a little late – German giants – DLO 1/1, step back. Just OK.


US scoring well on floor. 14.600 for Moldauer.

13.700 for Belyavskiy.

Lin – HB – Cassina – Kolman – full – layout tkkatchev 1/2, some elbows – goes over the wrong way on a handstand and has to correct – DLO double twist, and stuck.

That handstand issue in itself won’t take China out of gold, but it gets a little closer.

Tanigawa falls on floor for Japan.

Still 13.700 for Lin. That’s what difficulty will do for you.

Dalaloyan – HB – nice layout Kovacs – and regular kovacs, so high – layout tkatchev – layout tkatchev 1/2 – small legs on tak 1/2 but good vertical to make up for it – Yam – DLO 1/1, lean to hold the stick. Good one.

13.966 for Dalaloyan.

14.333 for Mikulak on floor.

Kenzo only needs like a 13 to clinch bronze for Japan, and it’s Kenzo.

Xiao – HB – Liukin and falls. WOOF. And now that gets really interesting. That’s the development Russia needed.  Resumes – latyout tkatchev is good – another hesitation on pirouette – DLO 1/1, step back.

Opportunity for Russia.

12.600 for Xiao.

Nagornyy needs 13.8 on HB. Very doable.

Nagornyy – Yam, good – layout tkatchev – layout tkatchev 1/2 with a struggle working out of it – muscles trhough it but could be decisive – tak 1/2 – tkatchev – tkatchev 1/2 with legs swinging through – DLO double twist, stuck.

Well now. Let’s see.

13.733! It’s not enough! By less than a tenth!

So, China will win by the smallest margin.

We thought China would win going in, but it was a really ugly meet for most of the teams. All the teams? So China certainly opened the door. Russia had its own mistakes. Judging by the routines we saw today, I thought Russia was the better side, but we did not see all the routines on the broadcast.

Japan had some really great moments early and would have been able to challenge the messes from China and Russia with its best day, but there were multiple falls for Japan too. The US takes 4th. Not a great day for the US either (and they’ll feel like with all the messes, they could have really done something) but the expected result in the end.

China – 256.634
Russia – 256.585
Japan – 253.744
USA – 251.994
GB – 248.628
Switzerland – 244.294
Brazil – 243.994
Netherlands – 240.660


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