It is terribly sad that the Yu-na Kim and Brian Orser situation could not have been just (seemingly) amicable parting of the ways, and had to degenerate into a he said/she said situation riddled with rumors. But there is so much attention to anything having to do with Kim that it's not too surprising.
Anyway, Phil Hersh reports that troubles appear to have begun when Kim formed her own management team, headed by her mother. He says that Orser was unaware that Kim scheduled the press conference to announce her competitive plans for the year and that she and her mother were not returning emails. When they told him his coaching services were no longer needed, he kept mum. Orser even contends that Kim has told him she does not know why there is a split, and he says the situation with Kim still training at the rink he coaches at is becoming "untenable." He also cites the rumors that he was approached to coach Mao Asada as a possible reason for the start of troubles.
Some additional information from the article:
In a statement Monday reported by a Korean newspaper, AT Sports said, "Ever since Orser was offered a job to coach another skater, we have had an awkward relationship. Since June, Kim Yuna has essentially been training alone."
Orser said financial issues had nothing to do with the split. He denied reports of having received a $1 million bonus after KIm won the Olympics.
"I'm the lowest paid coach at this level in the history of figure skating,'' Orser said. "I get $110 an hour, and that is what I charged her. I did make something from Korean commercials, but there was no deal between us for that."
Very interesting. If things really did take a turn following Orser being approached by Asada's team, then you have to think that's ludicrous. There's no reason one of the best coaches in the world would not be approached by other skaters, and he obviously shouldn't have been punished for that. I have to think there is more to the story that Orser hasn't revealed...right (like, did he consider actually taking Asada on while he was still with Kim)? I wish I had an inside source right about now.
For Kim's part, there was an interview with one of her representatives before the latest Orser-oriented article. She stated:
A. We (Brian, Yuna's mom, and Yuna) have already known one and another why Yuna has parted with him. We don't feel any need to inform the reason to the outside. Yuna's mom, Yuna, and Brian, all the people, have well understood this reason.
Q. He feels Yuna also does not know why. Is that true?
A. That's only a matter of Brian's feeling. Yuna already knows the reason why this relationship has ended. We always asked Yuna first.
Obviously, that is not helpful for us, stating we all know the reason but we won't tell. Perhaps just...no comment. And if Yu-na is telling Orser she doesn't know why he is no longer her coach, then that is a pretty unprofessional tack as well, especially if she does know why.
There is a lot going on here that we don't know and it's tough, because it's all rumors and each thing makes the other side look worse. I'm sure Kim will be fine with whomever she chooses to work with next. I really only worry if she will be able to motivate herself to care about a competition again. For Orser's part, he seems to be a great coach, and I can't say I don't love the idea of him taking on Asada next, since the Kim relationship has gone down in flames. I feel like that might be the extra motivation Kim might need to get out there and compete with some fire now that the Olympics are over. But, that is kind of a soap opera script approach. I think maybe Orser might do best to stay with some up and comers. It seems like that would make life a little simpler!
UPDATED: Here is an article from Yonhap News with further quotes from Kim, including:
"Do you really believe that I've been completely happy training for those four years, just as it seems to the outside world?" Kim wrote. "I don't want to tell you all about what happened, and I don't have to. It's all between us."
Sad. It's all very confusing. It also sounds like Kim is mad that Orser is commenting about her team, including her mom (and insinuating that the mother is behind the decision), but Kim is publicly accusing Orser of lying. Nothing good in this situation.