He's ordained in the state of Colorado. His coach is the PSA Coach of the Year. He has an unusual and somewhat quirky (unusual and quirky might be two solid adjectives to describe this guy) video on YouTube. His personality and wit on the ice are unmatched. Also, he competes this week in Germany at the Nebelhorn Trophy.
Ryan Bradley gets his Olympic Season underway, a season that many feel will be his last in the competitive ranks. By the time his free skate in Spokane rolls around, he'll be 26 and the oldest competitor in the men's competition (not that 26 is so old...others have won the event older than that).
I call Ryan one of the 'bubble skaters' because I feel they are on the bubble of making the Olympic Team...he might and then again he might not. He isn't a skater I feel I can confidently say will be on the team but I can't count him out either. Other 'bubble' skaters include Brandon Mroz, Stephen Carriere, and Adam Rippon. His performance this week will go a long way toward helping me get a better feel where he sits in the mix. He'll face stiff competition from Two-Time World Champ and Olympic Silver Medalist Stéphane Lambiel who will be in the competition as well.
I've long picked on Ryan to work on his jump technique and the overall smoothness of his skating. A little piece of me always wished he would go outside of himself and try a very serious piece of music. This season, his "Dark Eyes" short program and Baroque Era free skate music may be just the venue for him to try just that (although I hear he hams it up pretty good in the short!). In any case, it'll be interesting seeing him do something other than or at least along side schtick.
Let's see what Ryan can pull off this week...he may surprise us all.