Nathan Chen golden on skates, Chloe Kim repeats in halfpipe

Nathan Chen’s quest to exorcise the Olympic demons from 4 years in the past is now full.

Chen was masterful in his free skate, which mixed along with his sizable lead after the quick program, allowed him to say the gold in males’s determine skating on the 2022 Beijing Olympics.

(Searching for a recap of Wednesday’s occasions? We have got you lined.)

Chen wasn’t the one American to win gold on Thursday.

Chloe Kim made historical past as the primary girl to win two Olympic gold medals within the halfpipe. Her first run was all she wanted to outdistance the sector by a substantial margin.

Chen and Kim be part of snowboarder Lindsey Jacobellis in profitable gold medals for Group USA to date.

Nathan Chen skates to gold on the Beijing Olympics.

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Nathan Chen blows away the sector in males’s determine skating

BEIJING — For nearly 4 years now, Nathan Chen has been probably the most dominant male determine skater on the planet – a cool, quad-jumping maestro in contrast to something the game has ever seen. He is received nationwide and world championships. Damaged nationwide and world data. Over a span of extra 1,300 days, he didn’t lose a single competitors.

All that had been lacking on this marvelous four-year stretch was an Olympic gold medal.

Lacking, that’s, till Thursday.

Nearly 4 years to the day after a disastrous efficiency in Pyeongchang, Chen aced his closing look on the 2022 Winter Olympics and coasted to gold, changing into simply the seventh American man to win the boys’s particular person competitors on the Video games.

Skating to a compilation of music from the 2019 movie “Rocketman,” the 22-year-old was equal components sleek, technical and enjoyable in his four-minute efficiency at Capital Indoor Stadium in Beijing. He landed all 5 of the quad jumps in his lengthy program for a rating of 218.63, pushing his complete for the competitors to 332.60.

— Tom Schad

Jason Brown is USA’s different medal hopeful in males’s determine skating

Jason Brown performs during the 2022 Beijing Olympics during the men's short program.

Jason Brown performs in the course of the 2022 Beijing Olympics in the course of the males’s quick program.

The elder statesman of the U.S. males’s determine skating contingent at age 27, Jason Brown is again within the Olympics after serving as the primary alternate for the 2018 Pyeongchang Video games.

Brown helped the USA win bronze within the males’s staff competitors in Sochi in 2014, whereas ending ninth total. Extra just lately, he served as staff captain and completed sixth because the U.S. received silver on the 2021 World Championships.

Brown has needed to overcome accidents and a concussion sustained in a automobile accident on his solution to returning to the Olympic Video games after simply lacking out 4 years in the past. However his choice to the 2022 U.S. staff over 17-year-old Ilia Malinin didn’t come with out some controversy.

Brown set a private greatest within the quick program and stood sixth total behind chief Nathan Chen. He skated a clear free program and took over second place total with simply 5 skaters left.

— Steve Gardner

NBC defends Shiffrin protection, suggests sexism by critics

Mikaela Shiffrin, of the United States sits on the side of the course after skiing out in the first run of the women's slalom at the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, in the Yanqing district of Beijing. (AP Photo/Robert F. Bukaty)

Mikaela Shiffrin, of the US sits on the facet of the course after snowboarding out within the first run of the ladies’s slalom on the 2022 Winter Olympics, Wednesday, Feb. 9, 2022, within the Yanqing district of Beijing. (AP Picture/Robert F. Bukaty)

NBC supplied a full-throated protection of the way it lined Mikaela Shiffrin’s surprising Olympics flameout.

NBC’s cameras targeted on Shiffrin for a lot of the time as she sat forlornly on the course, head bowed, for greater than 20 minutes. The community aired a uncooked interview the place she fought off tears and stated she’s second-guessing all the things she’s executed for 15 years.

“Now we have an obligation in that second, because the broadcaster of the Olympic video games, to cowl the second,” Molly Solomon, government producer of NBC’s Olympics protection, stated in an interview with the Related Press. “There is not any script when there is a wipeout on the slopes or a fall in determine skating. We’re watching actual folks with actual feelings in actual time and we did all the things we had been speculated to do.”

Shiffrin’s efficiency was enormous information, she stated — the largest story of the Video games to date.

“I’ve thought so much about this, and if Joe Burrow or Matthew Stafford sit on the sidelines 22 minutes after the Tremendous Bowl on Sunday, you may wager the cameras are going to remain on them,” Solomon stated.

“Right here we’re in 2022 and we’ve a double customary in protection of girls’s sports activities,” she stated. “Girls’s sports activities must be analyzed via the identical lens as the boys. Probably the most well-known skier on the planet didn’t end her two greatest occasions. So we’re going to present her sitting on the hill and analyze what went unsuitable. You wager we’re.”

Viewers tuning into NBC’s protection expressed pity and confusion over why Shiffrin’s ache was plastered on their TVs for thus lengthy.

Keith Kaufman, a medical sports activities psychologist, instructed USA TODAY it is no shock that “the media tends to need to deal with the drama, which can appear to be it makes for good tv, however it provides one other layer to the misery that an athlete is experiencing.”

— Related Press

Nathan Chen in driver’s seat getting into males’s free skate

American determine skater and three-time world champion, Nathan Chen claimed the very best quick program rating ever (113.97) in worldwide competitors historical past Tuesday, positioning himself to thrive within the males’s free skate competitors in Beijing.

The 22-year-old scholar at Yale College was favored to win gold on the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, however completed seventeenth attributable to a devastating quick program efficiency. Since then he has claimed three world championships and 4 nationwide titles on his journey to Beijing.

The 24 skaters within the males’s closing started competitors at 8:30 p.m. ET Wednesday (9:30 a.m. on Thursday in Beijing). The performances go so as of lowest to highest rating, which means Chen will skate final within the closing group, a bit after 12 a.m. ET.

– Analis Bailey

Chloe Kim soars to second consecutive halfpipe gold

Snowboarder Chloe Kim celebrates winning gold in the women's halfpipe final on Thursday at Genting Snow Park.

Snowboarder Chloe Kim celebrates profitable gold within the ladies’s halfpipe closing on Thursday at Genting Snow Park.

ZHANGJIAKOU, China – Chloe Kim has made Olympic historical past. The 21-year-old American received the halfpipe for a second consecutive Video games, making her the primary girl to win two Olympic gold medals within the occasion.

As she did 4 years in the past in Pyeongchang, Kim entered because the overwhelming favourite and ran away with the competitors.

Kim locked up the competition on her first run, placing down a security rating on her first lap down the halfpipe. She did a 900 and two 1080s – at that time, most riders hadn’t executed one 1080 – to simply take the lead.

Kim has lengthy stood atop her sport, however on Thursday at Genting Snow Park, she did what so many different nice riders have tried. Individuals Kelly Clark and Hannah Teter and Australian Torah Vivid all have no less than one different medal to go along with their Olympic gold, however none was in a position to get again atop the rostrum.

— Rachel Axon

Iranian skier assessments optimistic for banned steroid

Iran’s solely male athlete on the Beijing Olympics has examined optimistic for an anabolic steroid within the first confirmed doping case on the Video games.

The Worldwide Testing Company says Alpine skier Hossein Saveh Shemshaki failed a drug take a look at on Monday in Beijing, earlier than competing.

He’s provisionally suspended and can’t compete at what was to be his third Olympics.

The 36-year-old raced in slalom and big slalom on the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and 4 years later at Sochi. He carried Iran’s flag on the opening ceremony in Sochi.

He can enchantment towards his provisional ban on the Courtroom of Arbitration for Sport in Beijing.

— The Related Press

Favourite for gold in ladies’s determine skating has optimistic drug take a look at

Olympic gold medalists from Russia celebrate after the figure skating mixed team competition during the Beijing Olympics.

Olympic gold medalists from Russia have a good time after the determine skating combined staff competitors in the course of the Beijing Olympics.

BEIJING – The medal ceremony for the Olympic determine skating staff competitors has been delayed by a optimistic drug take a look at among the many gold-medal-winning Russian staff, and officers have been instructed that the athlete who examined optimistic is a minor, in line with an individual with information of the scenario who spoke to USA TODAY Sports activities on the situation of anonymity.

The one minor on the six-person Russian staff that received gold was Kamila Valieva, 15, the gold-medal favourite within the ladies’s competitors later within the Video games.

Russian newspaper RBC reported that Valieva examined optimistic for trimetazidine, a coronary heart treatment that has been banned by the World Anti-Doping Company since 2014 as a result of it may possibly enhance endurance and blood circulate.

A spokesperson for the Russian Olympic Committee has not responded to an e-mail in search of remark.

— Christine Brennan

Lengthy highway again to Olympics for cross-country skier Rosie Brennan

Rosie Brennan merely wasn’t feeling like herself on the Winter Olympic Video games in Pyeongchang in 2018.

“I used to be simply actually exhausted on a regular basis,” stated Brennan, who at age 29 had made her first U.S. Olympic staff in cross nation snowboarding, however completed 58th within the 15-kilometer skiathlon. “It was virtually like an out-of-body expertise.”

Months later, Brennan discovered she’d been affected by mononucleosis. So as to add insult to sickness, she was dropped by the U.S. nationwide staff for the second time attributable to her subpar outcomes that season.

Brennan thought of calling it a profession, however the perseverance that drives cross nation skiers saved her on monitor.

Again for her second Winter Olympics, Brennan, 33, completed fourth within the ladies’s dash and 14th within the skiathlon. She hopes to compete in each ladies’s cross nation occasion in Beijing.

(UPDATE: The U.S. staff has been introduced for Thursday’s 10K basic and Brennan is on the beginning record — together with two-time Olympic medalist Jessie Diggins, Hailey Swirbul, and Novie McCabe.)

– Karen Rosen

Why are Olympians in Beijing placing tape on their faces?

Some snowboarders at the Genting Snow Park have been spotted wearing athletic tape on their faces in an effort to prevent frostbite and wind burns, even though the manufacturer of the tape says it wasn't made to do that.

Some snowboarders on the Genting Snow Park have been noticed carrying athletic tape on their faces in an effort to forestall frostbite and wind burns, although the producer of the tape says it wasn’t made to do this.

Athletes in Beijing are utilizing KT Tape to guard their faces from the freezing chilly temperatures, however the CEO of KT Tape Greg Venner warns that the tape is not clinically examined for faces.

The KT Tape that athletes are placing on their faces is often used as an elastic sports activities tape to offer help for muscular tissues, ligaments and tendons to permit for full vary of movement. The tape is sponsored and utilized by a number of athletes within the Beijing Winter Olympics in addition to the summer time Olympics season.

There is not any precedent for utilizing the tape on faces or proof that it protects folks from the chilly, and Venner says that athletes must be cautious about utilizing the tape on the fragile pores and skin on their face.

“We’ve seen KT Tape used as safety towards the wind in winter sports activities over time, so though it isn’t a clinically accepted utilization, we admire the ingenuity. KT Tape doesn’t endorse the usage of kinesiology tape on the face because it isn’t clinically examined,” Venner instructed USA TODAY. “Nevertheless, we definitely applaud the creativity – we’re proud to help Group USA!”

— Michelle Shen

Jamaican bobsledder fights via grief to make Olympic return

Jamaica's Benjamin Alexander (right) and Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian (left) lead their team during the opening ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympics on Feb. 4, 2022, in Beijing.

Jamaica’s Benjamin Alexander (proper) and Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian (left) lead their staff in the course of the opening ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympics on Feb. 4, 2022, in Beijing.

BEIJING – Group Jamaica’s entrance to Friday’s opening ceremony was a joyous sight, with Jazmine Fenlator-Victorian main a band of dancing, waving, gyrating bobsledders in unmistakably neon yellow pants.

However for Fenlator-Victorian, each second in Beijing is a battle between pleasure and grief, between the feelings pulling her residence and the understanding that that is the place she must be, between the sense of accomplishment in simply getting right here and the sacrifices she made to convey her third journey to the Olympics into existence.

“I’m so completely satisfied to be right here and press on and share that a part of my journey,” she instructed USA TODAY Sports activities. “However I’d mendacity if I stated it wasn’t extraordinarily troublesome.”

Raised in New Jersey and now residing in Texas, Fenlator-Victorian knew full effectively when she left Group USA after the 2014 Olympics to compete below the Jamaican flag that she was selecting the tougher highway. In some methods, that was the purpose.

– Dan Wolken

What’s ROC on the Winter Olympics?

Russia’s involvement in a doping scandal is as soon as once more within the highlight for the 2022 Beijing Olympics with its athletes unable to compete below their nation’s title for the third Olympics in a row.

RELATED: Group medals for determine skating delayed by Russian drug take a look at

Whereas Russia cannot take part within the video games, a loophole permits its athletes to so long as they adhere to sure guidelines, like not carrying the Russian flag or singing the Russian nationwide anthem.

Athletes are in a position to compete below the umbrella of a company referred to as the ROC, which stands for Russian Olympic Committee. It successfully renders the Olympic ban towards Russia for its doping program to a symbolic gesture by permitting its clear athletes to nonetheless take part.

— Michelle Shen

Determine skating will cease calling ladies skaters ‘girls’

Alexa Knierim (USA) and Brandon Frazier (USA) compete in the team figure skating pairs short program event during the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Games at Capital Indoor Stadium.

Alexa Knierim (USA) and Brandon Frazier (USA) compete within the staff determine skating pairs quick program occasion in the course of the Beijing 2022 Olympic Winter Video games at Capital Indoor Stadium.

In 1924, determine skating grew to become the primary sport within the Winter Olympics to permit ladies to compete. However although the boys competed below classes for “males,” ladies may onlycompete below “girls.”

Determine skating can also be the final winter sport to alter that naming conference: The 2022 Winter Olympics is the primary to let ladies compete as ladies, not girls. It’s a refined change — one which audiences could miss — however a significant one. For a century, determine skating has clung to inflexible gender guidelines, about all the things from costumes to who can compete as a pair, which have enforced particular expectations about how athletes ought to look or behave. Some skaters have even reported hiding their gender identification with a purpose to conform.

This yr, extra out LGBTQ skaters, together with the primary out nonbinary Winter Olympian, will compete within the Video games than ever earlier than. This yr there will likely be 9 overtly LGBTQ determine skaters in Beijing. There have been three in 2018 and none in 2014.

— Chabeli Carrazana, The nineteenth

Olympic ice a proving floor for future NHL stars

Canada's Owen Power was taken No. 1 overall by the Buffalo Sabres in the 2021 draft.

Canada’s Owen Energy was taken No. 1 total by the Buffalo Sabres within the 2021 draft.

When the Olympic Athletes of Russia received the gold medal within the non-NHL 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics, some outstanding future NHL gamers had been on the roster.

Ahead Kirill Kaprizov, who scored the time beyond regulation winner within the gold medal recreation, would grow to be NHL rookie of the yr final season and an All-Star this season with the Minnesota Wild. Backup goalie Ilya Sorokin is establishing himself because the No. 1 goalie with the New York Islanders. Igor Shesterkin, the additional goalie in these Video games, is a midseason favourite for the Vezina Trophy with the New York Rangers.

U.S. ahead Troy Terry, in the meantime, made the NHL All-Star Sport with the Anaheim Geese throughout a breakout season.

The NHL will not have gamers on the Beijing Olympics. However with the boys’s hockey competitors getting underway, we have recognized six 2022 Olympians (three from Group USA) who may turn into key gamers within the NHL.

– Mike Brehm

This text initially appeared on USA TODAY Sports activities: Nathan Chen wins males’s determine skating gold: Olympics stay updates