The rumors were true. John Coughlin, newly split from Caitlin Yankowskas, with whom he recently won a national title, will now skate with Caydee Denney, former national champion with Jeremy Barrett.
I'm glad both Coughlin and Denney are now guaranteed able partners who have had success, and I think Denney has improved immeasurably in her presentation even just over this season, which did not appear to be the easiest for her and Barrett. Denney is moving to Colorado and the pair will train with Dalilah Sappenfeld, who trained Yankowskas and Coughlin.
However, to me, Caitlin Yankowskas is number one skater in terms of presentation for the U.S. pairs ladies. She has lovely line and a great presence on the ice. As far as technical capabilities, nothing that Denney was doing stands out as far superior to what Yankowskas was doing, so perhaps this pairing is based on personality or something (Updated to add that Denney and Barrett used to be known for being able to skate cleanly, so that could have been an advantage for Denney in possibly being cleaner technically than Yankowskas,, but honestly by the end D&B weren't more consistent than Yankowskas and Coughlin, who had a much more successful season.). Who knows. I only hope Yankowskas can find a partner soon.
This whole thing, though, comes off a little weird. There is (deserved, I think) speculation that Coughlin knew that he was going to be pairing with Denney before he split with Yankowskas. I wonder how much Yankowskas knew and for how long, and if the pair knew they were splitting while they skated at worlds.
What do you all think of the new pairing? I think it has the potential to be a fine match, although I don't see it being a better match than Yankowskas and Coughlin. But time will tell.