Maggie Nichols: I have to admit I don’t really like her gymnastics. I find her excecution pretty sloppy and her style is not captivating to me. But even someone like me, who is not a fan of Maggie would be an idiot not to admit how much she has improved. Maggie was never a super star as a junior and as a senior she was pretty good but she was never great. Until now! After winning bronze in both nationals and secret classic she established herself as the 3rd best AAer in the country. She hit every routine, she perfromed difficult skills with confidence and she proved that she is a reliable athlete to put on a worlds team. People compare her progress to Aly Raisman’s and I can definitely see why. Except I think she’s more promising than Aly was in 2010. Her bars, even though they’re messy, are much more promising, her leaps are better and she’s a much better performer than Aly ever was. And the most exciting things is that this is definitely not her peak. We know she’s been working on connecting her malony 1/2 with her pak, on geting an amanar, a double double on floor, a side aerial to loso on beam and probably some other stuff I can’t remember right now. I don’t know if she’ll be able to compete any of the above and of course I don’t know if she’ll be lucky enough to stay healthy and motivated in the next years. But there’s no denying that she’s a rising star for USA gymnastics. If she makes the team this year, which is very likely especially if she performs well at panams, she will be the steady team player who will be first on the lineups to deliver solid scores. If she is succesful at this role in this year’s worlds I think she will have earned the right to call herself a major contender for every team in the next couple of years. But if she continues to improve and she’s capable to add some of the upgrades she’s been working maybe she will eventually stop being the table setter and become one of the stars of the team, just like Aly did in 2011 and 2012.
You were inspired… ;) Nice analysis!