"The Spirit of Competition" takes a break from the danger and politics to focus entirely on pro-bending and romance. On the one hand, it feels a little disjointed to have this big disconnect between the different sides of Korra's life; we've now had two episodes that were all pro-bending and character stuff without any advancement of the main arcs. Though on the other hand, I guess it's plausible that even the Avatar wouldn't be facing life-threatening dangers every week.
Anyway, I'm surprised they confronted the big romantic-triangle stuff so soon and mostly resolved it (though I assume there's still a bit of a Korra-Mako-Asami triangle to be resolved later). I guess it's because this was originally conceived as only 12 episodes, so the story has to advance more quickly. It was handled pretty well, but the soap-opera stuff doesn't engage me as much as the other stuff.