Ilia Averbukh about ice dance at World Championships 2017 in short:
I think that in ice dance “behind-the-scenes’ judges games” will begin, in which it will be decided who will support whom, who will fight for whom. With the exception of Canadians and French, the rest pairs have stregths and weaknesses, so the behind-the-scenes lobby can either lead the pair to the top three, or on contrary throw out of the top six. It also applies to Bobrova and Soloviev.
Averbukh also told that he expects the performance of second Russian pair (Stepanova/Bukin), whom he likes, with a certain hope:
They have a tremendous potential. Their time hasn’t come yet, but we should bet on this pair. We can say that after the Olympics we still have strong pairs who will push ice dance forward.
So, do I understand correctly that Averbukh joins Natalia Bestemianova in her campaign “Stepanova-Bukin are the best, why no one sees that?” ;)