Russia names 4 members of their Olympic team

Your 2016 Russian Olympic team

Aliya Musafina, Viktoria Komova, Maria Paseka and Ksenia Afanasyeva.

So with these 4 their vault line up is set. 3 DTY’s and an Amanar or Cheng. Paeska has a decent bar routine so the bars line up is also set which does not look good for my girl Daria Spiridonova who IMO deserves a spot on this team regardless but pretty much is useless on any event but bars. With beam Aliya and Viktoria could obviously be used but Paeska should not be used here. Ksenia could be used but with floor unless Komova gets it together this team needs a beam and floor worker.

Who you got?

51 Responses to “Russia names 4 members of their Olympic team”

  1. ilanchik20 Says:

    I’m kind of confused as to why they named the team already. Aliya had a knee surgery and is yet to return to training, how is she on the team?

    Plus Ksenia and Vika are very fragile, especially Vika.

    I think the last spot will be between Melnikova and Kapitonova? I vote for the latter lol.

    I love Seda but sigh. Seda breaks my heart.

    • gymtruthteller Says:

      I am holding out hope for Daria

      • Ilanchik20 Says:

        I love Daria too. #fingers crossed.

        I watched Aliya on Periscope yesterday (I was bored lol) and even her upper body does not look like she in Olympic (or close to) shape. Although Aliya is Aliya, she’ll prob be ready haha.

  2. KG Says:

    They don’t normally name the team this early do they? I know they normally name it before Marta, but this seems like ridiculously early. Like ilanchik said, a lot of them seem injured/fragile/not in competition shape yet? I too have faith that Aliyah will be ready (because she always is when it counts), but how many times can she make a real come back? I hate to say it but IMO this doesn’t bode well for Russia in Rio, if these injured vets are so locked in that they’ve already announced it.

  3. JAS4 Says:

    I wonder if it’s mind games from Valentina to make everyone else think they are fighting it out for only one spot. If Grishina could get it together she would fit in great. She could be used on vt/bb if necessary but capable of decent scores on UB/fx if she hits(and is healthy of course). It would also help if she weren’t on Valentina’s bad side lol.

    • Katie Says:

      I am in favor of this just because it would reunite the entire 2012 squad. I love daria but I could get on board with Grishna. Maybe nbc would even do an old school fluff piece?

    • Ilanchik20 Says:

      I would expect mind games from Marta, Valentina doesn’t have that luxury.

      I don’t think Grishina will be in Tio. A few months ago, Valentina named a group of gymnasts who she thought were in contention for Rio–Grishina wasn’t even on that list.

      Let’s hope Vika stays in one piece. If they push her for AA, that may not be good.

      Sosnitskaya used to have a good floor before her injury this year, maybe she can get it back.

      Or if they changed Seda’s routine, she could finally hit her beam. Sigh.

      • KG Says:

        I agree Grishina has no chance barring lots of injuries or what have you. I actually enjoy her gymnastics (despite always default rooting for team USA, I do love the balletic gymnasts) but I think she has blown it/choked one too many times.

  4. Rocío Martínez López Says:

    This list has to be temporary. It’s way too early and they don’t know if some other gymnast would show a lot of potential this season (there is a couple of promising junior that turns senior next year) or if some of the injuried ones will regain enough level to compete next year. In fact, the two all arounders (Aliya and Komova) are a mistery right now, because we don’t know how Aliya will be after her last injuries and Komova have not competed in the AA for years and in Glasgow she had a watered down routine in floor, no Amanar and a lot of consistency problems in beam, so we don’t really know if she will be at her best for Rio. In any case, I do think these four gymnasts will be in Rio if they remain healthy and regain their previous potential, but to release this list seems a very dangerous move for me. It can change a lot by the time Rio comes.

    I am sorry, but I don’t think that Daria has a legitimate shot at this team. She is great on bars, but she can’t be used in any other apparatus and in a team of just five gymnasts that would be a very dangerous move, more so if we take into account that her event is UB, where Russia has a lot of depth. She would have more chances if she had floor as a pet event, but no with bars. Russia needs desperately another floor especialist and, if possible, a floor/beam worker and Daria doesn’t fit that description. Grishina would be good, but I think she is blacklisted at the moment. I don’t think she would even come close to Rio.

    I think that the fifth spot will be for a junior turning senior this year. I think Melnikova would be a good option, but I wouldn’t rule out Alla, depending of her injuries of course. But in any case, they would pick, in my opinion, a good beam/floor worker who could accompany Aliya and Komova in both events. They had pretty low scores on floor last worlds, so they will probably focus on that, specially if Aliya or Komova can’t get routines with a lot of difficulty in time. Afan can compete beam, but they need a difficult floor to complete their team. With Paseka, they will have an Amanar. There were rumours that Afan was training one, but I don’t know. If she gets it and Komova get hers back, they could even have three. If Komova wants to have a chance in the AA, she needs it. With Komova, Aliya and Paseka on bars, they could get two scores over 15 and one in the middle/high 14’s, and Aliya, Afan and Komova can do beam with good scores. But on floor, even at her best, Komova didn’t have a score that could compete with the USA, Paseka doesn’t have a high earning routine either and we don’t know in which shape Aliya will be, so they need a floor worker with high scores. I think that fact could determine the fifth spot.

  5. Rien Says:

    People who thinks this list are idiots…no offense. The Rods are also idiots and push this nonsense all the time. Nothing is set in stone, this is used as a way to motivate the girls yet I believe it does the opposite. I’d be pissed and unmotivated if a gymnast who was on crutches last week was named to the Olympic team over me. Paseka is the most lock on the team. Her amanar is highly valuable, she can contend for a gold medal, and she can contribute on bars and floor during qualis and if someone gets injures. Next Mustafina ASSUMING she regains her program. She can contribute on all events, contend for an AA medal and individual medals. Next is Komova simply because of her epic transformation from hot mess in 2011, so the most talented gymnast in 2012 and rightful winner of the AA 😁. Yes she is a hot mess currently but I wouldn’t have trusted her in the Olympics after 2011, but she came through in 2012 so I expect the same miracle. Next is Afan. If she regains her Amanar she is the most valuable on the team because her floor scores over 12.0.

    I fear however, that this is all wishful thinking. Also I cannot visualize this team without Melnikova. She is a huge asset for the team and can contend in the AA. Also Skrypnik is very talented and could easily contend. I am not a fan of Seda or Kharenkova but they could contend along with Spiri.

    Moral of the story, the Rods are idiots and we shouldn’t believe anything they say or do. There is no point predicting teams 9 months before the games especially when one girl isn’t even training.

    • Rocío Martínez López Says:

      I am with you about Rods.😉

      I just don’t know about Kharenkova and Daria. I don’t think there is space in this team for a one event gymnast and they are. I don’t think they will take someone who cannot do at least two events. That’s why I think that Daria and Kharenkova are not an option right now and both Maria and Seda hadn’t done themselves a lot of favors in the last worlds with their falls. I think Alla or Seda would be good alternates, but I would place Melnikova before any of them. She was the unofficial champion of the last Russian Cup and she has pretty impressive stuff.

      • Rien Says:

        Daria Skrypnik or Daria Spridonova? I think Skrypnik actually has a decent shot for the 5th spot after Melnikova. Spiri, Seda, and Kharenkova are only options if there are injuries. Alla is okay but all they really need is a floor worker and that’s not her. I think Seda would be the ideal alternate because she can cover every event with a 14+ score (floor slightly lower). But honestly it’s way too early to tell. Komova, Musty, Paseka, and Grish all made huge improvements between 2011 and 2012 so anything could happen. Any of the B team girls could whip out an amanar and head to Rio based on that alone.

      • Rocío Martínez López Says:

        I meant Spiridonova, sorry. I haven’t had a chance to see Skrupnik yet.🙂

      • Ilanchik20 Says:

        Skypnik has the talent and can be good but she is Seda 2.0. Lots of talent but cannot hit when it matters to save her life.

        There is also Sokova and she used to be one of Valentina’s pets but she doesn’t appear to be anymore–maybe someone knows why lol.

      • rien Says:

        Skrypnik is solid on bars and is much more consistent than Seda, I mean she did beat Melnikova with a 58+ at 2015 Champs and she even won the youth Olympic festival with a fall. I love the returning Olympians but leaving Melnikova, Skrypnik and Sokova behind would be hard. Sokova definitely has an advantage if she is Rods pet because she has a solid floor where russia is obviously weak. Skrypniks best event being bars does not help her because all 5 Russians were top 10 at worlds. Theres definitely a lot of time for things to change, I guess its good Eremina and Iliankova aren’t eligible because they are very talented as well. Russia has the potential to be great this coming year, lets hope disaster doesn’t strike!

    • gymtruthteller Says:

      Look at you using logic to decide this I agree. I also think Afan with the DTY and floor is also a lock.

      • JAS4 Says:

        What if Nabs is the fifth member? Lol! They tend to bring her out when it becomes necessary even though she’s retired lol! If she was in top shape with decent difficulty she might actually be a decent choice for the team.

      • Ilanchik20 Says:

        I totally forgot about Nabs LOL. Actually I think she still trains leisurely and competes with her local teams at domestic meets. So anything is possible, haha.

        Nabs was the alternate in 2012 right?

        I hope the former 2012 Russian Olympians remain healthy but that seems very unlikely although I guess it’s Rio so they may compete even with nagging pain.

      • G Says:

        lol the thought of Nabs training leisurely is funny to me. Like she does a bar set and then sits down to drink a smoothie or something.

      • gymtruthteller Says:

        More like have a cigarette lol

      • Rocío Martínez López Says:

        Hahaha, G! A smoothie? It’s Nabs. I was thinking more of a tequila shot or something.

      • Rocío Martínez López Says:

        Love your comment anyway G. Made me laugh!🙂

  6. sanitynmotion Says:

    This is crazy to announce the team this early, when they aren’t even all in shape. It’s like the anti- Marta, who would fly everyone to Rio and then announce the final 5 just before podium training, if she could.

  7. Ilanchik20 Says:

    Proposed code changes. Some crazy proposed changes for vault.

    • sanitynmotion Says:

      If I’m reading this right, now they are proposing the amanar has the same point value as a rudi?

      ASac would be pissed.

      I feel like this is basically addressing the fact that in vault you have the ability to rack up the most points by doing a more difficult one. I.e., the gymnasts doing DTY’s won’t be at such a disadvantage.

      This is good for Gabby (ugh) since she is having issues getting that amanar around. Could be good for Aly too and even Kyla (I hope).

      • Ilanchik20 Says:

        Asac would be pissed (I’m still bitter she wasn’t on a team in London) but these wouldn’t take effect (if approved) until 2017 and I doubt Aly or GD will be around then. At least let’s hope GD retires after Rio.

        On the other hand, perhaps this will motivate Asac to come out of retirement as a specialist for 2020 LOL

      • Rocío Martínez López Says:

        That would be good for Russia and Romania too. They won’t suffer so much in comparision with the USA if their gymnasts can’t throw three Amanars.

      • Gym Obsessed Says:

        Though these changes aren’t until 2017, right? So it won’t help Gabby too much as far as this year. (I hope!)

      • Ilanchik20 Says:

        Yeah. The changes will go up to a vote in 2016. Then, if approved, they’ll go into effect in 2017. Let’s hope GD isn’t around then LOL.

        In her Inside Gymnastics interview (yesterday), GD said she’ll compete her amanar next year (meaning 2016). Eh.

  8. JAS4 Says:

    I am all for Asac coming out of retirement for a specialist spot in 2020. I would love to see Shawn try for a specialist spot as well but I doubt either would come out of retirement.

    • Ilanchik20 Says:

      Shawn prob would if her body would allow it. You could always tell she wasn’t quit done.

      Asac is def done (despite my desire for the opposite).

      Although I imagine both will likely have babies by 2020.

      Now, let’s hope Nastia doesn’t unretire!

  9. JAS4 Says:

    I would imagine both Asac and Shawn are over the politics and mind games as well. I would love to see them as a synchro diving team or maybe a trampoline team lol. Both have great form in the air lol! Skinner is upgrading beam:

    • sanitynmotion Says:

      ASac and Shawn were my favorite Beijing Olympians. I would love for them to come back, but Shawn knows no matter how in shape/great she was Marta wasn’t having it and same with ASac. I think they bonded over the mind games during the London quad, because now it’s like Nastia is on the outs and they are BFFs.

      Both did have great form tumbling wise and Shawn had great form on bars. I wonder if Chow is still kicking himself that Shawn didn’t have more upgrades in her bar routine – but then again, those judges were giving Nastia that gold come hell or high water. At least she has the “Olympic gold medalist” title from her beam. I bet that kills Nastia to this day.

      I’m still miffed ASac didn’t go to London either. She totally would have gotten the gold vault medal.

      • G Says:

        I loved Shawn on bars. Sure her routine wasn’t super difficult but her form was always on point! It always kills me when people go on about Nastia on bars when her form was crap and meanwhile Shawn’s legs were always glued together, her toes pointed and she had nice giants and a great swing.

      • Ilanchik20 Says:

        I also miss Sloan in elite. Her NCAA season is over in May. Maybe she can show up to Classics in June. I’m all for it LOL.

      • G Says:

        Yeah I really liked Bridget and Chelsea Memmel too. Really the only girls I wasn’t fond of from ’08 were NL and SP.

      • gymtruthteller Says:

        Who is SP?

      • sanitynmotion Says:

        Sam Pezcek? Yeah, forgettable since she injured herself and only did bars.

      • gymtruthteller Says:

        ah yes Sam Peszek the annoying one

      • G Says:

        Lol yes

  10. Exgymgurl Says:

    everyone go to amazon and like the review of finding my shine by happy gilmore. do it now. I swear GTT wrote it😉 …. or someone almost as funny

  11. Gym Obsessed Says:

    Totally random subject in this post but I really want to ask: Am I the only one who doesn’t like Laurie?? I’ve seen a number of Olympic teams predictions with her name in it and people saying they hope she makes it and I honestly despise her floor routine. Her facial expressions are like a deranged pageant girl or something. I also think based on last year she’s definitely going to have to upgrade to be in contention. Thoughts?

    • Melanie Says:

      No, you’re not alone! I hate her style of dancing. Every floor routine so far is ridiculously frenetic and repetitive. She’s decent on the other events, but nothing special. I don’t think we’ll see her in Rio unless some major players get injured.

    • Ilanchik20 Says:

      You are not the only one. I don’t like her floor. Her floor actually bores me because it’s too many weird facial expressions rather than dance. She is the U.S version of Fragapane. I think the gymtwins like her, are friends with her, so whoever likes her follows them. She has descent bars but unless she upgrades she is just an AA’er and Maggie, Bailie, even Kyla are better. She has confirmed on that she will not upgrade to an amanar so I doubt any AA’ers without an amanar will be on the team (unless you are GD). Plus she is kind of injury prone, there is no way Marta is risking taking her. I predict that only one new senior will be on the team and right to me that’s Norah or Regan.

      • Exgymgurl Says:

        i think certain girls are being pushed out. I think without an amanar she has no shot. The United States of Amanar builds its point lead on vault

    • Gym Obsessed Says:

      YES – thank you! Agree, agree, agree with everything.

  12. Guest Says:

    Shawn reunited with Chow and did a flip on floor. 😉

    When the old farts come "home" (back to our coach and gym) and come to play #dontmindthepjs #gymnastsforlife

    A photo posted by Shawn Johnson East (@shawnjohnson) on

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