Oda wins NHK, Canada's Reynolds 4th
Nobunari Oda of Japan had a successful homecoming at the NHK Trophy event in Tokyo, winning by a surprisingly comfortable margin over an impressive Johnny Weir of the United States.
In the end, the judges appeared to be more impressed by the quantity of Oda's jumps than the artistry of Weir at the final stop on the six-event ISU Grand Prix series.
Known as a leaper, Oda was not at his best with his jumps. He came inches from sitting down on one triple, dragged his back leg on a quad, and touched down with his hand on a third jump.
Still, it was good enough for a top free skate score of 154.55, giving him 236.18 points overall.
Oda nailed all his jumps in the short program, including four triples, to hold the lead heading into the final component.
The 20-year-old didn't compete at the event last year. He was suspended by the Japanese skating federation after being arrested for driving a moped under the influence.
Weir, the three-time American champion and bronze medallist last year at the worlds, landed a flawless triple-double to open his program. He skated a mostly clean if not exhilarating program to finish with 224.42 points overall.
France's Yannick Ponsero was third with 217.24 points.
Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam, B.C., had a tremendous free skate, leapfrogging American Stephen Carriere and Japan's Takahito Mura to improve from sixth to fourth.
Reynolds got huge elevation on a quad early in his program. He two-footed a landing and had another minor bobble, but finished strongly with a series of jumps and spins.
He received 132.23 points for a total of 199.74, matching his fourth-place finish at Skate America in October.
The ISU Grand Prix Final will take place in Korea in mid-December. Canadians Patrick Chan and Joannie Rochette are among those who've already qualified.