Michael Phelps vs. Ryan Lochte at Olympic trials

Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte battle it out at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials in Omaha.

<p>GANGNEUNG, South Korea – Journalists root for the story, not for any individual or team, which is why I went to the U.S.-Russia hockey game here Saturday. I thought it would be a great story if we beat the bastards. Look: I just don’t like other countries coming in to the United States to try to elect incompetent boobs. That’s our job.</p><p>Frankly, I wasn’t sure that this U.S.-Russia tilt would give me that warm Cold War feeling, but it was clear before the puck dropped that this was serious business. U.S. forward Ryan Donato said, “Even before the game there (was) a lot of tension.” That may have been an echo from 1980—this is the first Olympic tournament in a generation that features Russian pros and (mostly) American amateurs. And it may have been because hours earlier, the U.S. Justice Department indicted 13 Russian nationals for tampering with the 2016 election.</p><p>The Russians scored the first goal of the night, cutting the score to 13-1. The goal happened so quickly—instant passes from Alexander Barabanov to Sergei Mozyakin to Nikolai Prokhorkin, who scored—that it seemed like a magic trick.</p><p>It was pretty clear that the Americans can skate with the Russians, and the Americans can match the Russians’ physicality, but the Americans do not have the Russians’ skill. By the time Russia scored in the final second of the second period to take a 3-0 lead, it was clear that during the next intermission U.S. coach Tony Granato would need to make a major adjustment, like switching to baseball. The final score was 4-0.</p><p>Well, we all knew the Russians were better. And maybe it was weird to see <em>these </em>Russians as unfeeling and evil. Pavel Datsyuk, after all, played 14 dazzling seasons in the NHL without offending anybody. He even won the Lady Byng trophy for sportsmanship and gentlemanly play four times. But if you can’t lump an entire nation of people together using lazy stereotypes, why even have the Olympics?</p><p>This was nasty and it was fun, and man, was it chippy. Prokhorkin and enormous young American Jordan Greenway fought like a divorced couple—not an all-out brawl, just constant little disputes. Greenway said later: “I don’t know really what started it. He didn’t want to let me go. He wanted to do a little dance. I’m always down for a little dance.”</p><p>I think I know what started it. I think we all do. It all goes back to Lake Placid.</p><p>The story of the 1980 U.S. men’s hockey team often gets twisted and exaggerated for maximum dramatic effect, so let’s just stick to facts: A band of gritty American amateurs, wearing skates that had been handed down from their fathers and using sticks they carved themselves, stunned a mighty Soviet Union team, propelling the Americans to the gold medal and instantly cutting the Soviet nuclear arsenal in half. The Cold War did not officially end until a few years later, when Rocky Balboa beat Ivan Drago for the heavyweight championship, but the 1980 Olympic hockey tournament was the turning point.</p><p>Let’s face it: We have spent 38 years trying to create the Miracle on Ice. We can’t shut up about it. The world got tired of hearing about it 37 years ago. When we mention Mike Eruzione at bars, other countries leave before finishing their beers. And still we keep yapping.</p><p>There is a pretty simple reason for this, and it’s not just that the U.S. won the gold medal. The U.S. has won lots of gold medals. Michael Phelps has won so many, he leaves them as tips. The Miracle on Ice allowed America to be an underdog, and we don’t get too many chances like that. It was a lot more inspiring than Charles Barkley showing up in Barcelona and snapping an Angolan in two.</p><p>The Russians are tired of hearing that story. The U.S. is their rival on every possible level. This was reinforced four years ago in Sochi, when American T.J. Oshie scored the winning goal against Russia in a shootout.</p><p>Russia’s Ilya Kovalchuk, who scored two goals Friday and looked like he might score more, said afterward, “No anger. It’s sports. It’s emotions. After that last game in Sochi. I think you guys are still showing highlights of Oshie scoring in that shootout. Hopefully you will change it now.”</p><p>Of course we won’t. Kovalchuk knows that. But the Russians earned a bye in the quarterfinal round <em>and </em>forced the Americans to play an extra game, which meant this was like two wins for them.</p><p>The Russians are playing for so much here—a gold medal, but also a large helping of pride. Officially, this team isn’t playing for the Russian Federation, thanks to that country’s doping sanctions. They are Olympic Athletes From Russia. The Russians wore generic red uniforms with OLYMPIC ATHLETE FROM RUSSIA on them, which had to be embarrassing for everybody involved. They looked like the t-shirts your Aunt Harriet makes everybody wear when your extended family goes on a cruise. The Russians should have just worn uniforms that read I WENT TO PYEONGCHANG AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS LOUSY HOCKEY JERSEY.</p><p>Nobody was fooled by the lousy outfit. These guys may not officially represent Russia, but they are undeniably <em>playing </em>for Russia.</p><p>There were Russian flags in the crowd, and rows of fans wearing shirts that spelled RUSSIA IN MY HEART and RED MACHINE, and there was Russian coach Oleg Znarok putting his stars on the power play with a four-goal lead late in the third period. U.S. Coach Tony Granato didn’t like it. The feisty Greenway —who said “I don’t see any reason why we’re not in the gold medal game”—didn’t seem to like it. Me, I loved it. Both teams can make nice when they play Switzerland. U.S.-Russia is no time to make friends.</p>
Nasty, Fun and Chippy: U.S.-Russia Hockey Rivalry Adds Another Chapter in Korea

GANGNEUNG, South Korea – Journalists root for the story, not for any individual or team, which is why I went to the U.S.-Russia hockey game here Saturday. I thought it would be a great story if we beat the bastards. Look: I just don’t like other countries coming in to the United States to try to elect incompetent boobs. That’s our job.

Frankly, I wasn’t sure that this U.S.-Russia tilt would give me that warm Cold War feeling, but it was clear before the puck dropped that this was serious business. U.S. forward Ryan Donato said, “Even before the game there (was) a lot of tension.” That may have been an echo from 1980—this is the first Olympic tournament in a generation that features Russian pros and (mostly) American amateurs. And it may have been because hours earlier, the U.S. Justice Department indicted 13 Russian nationals for tampering with the 2016 election.

The Russians scored the first goal of the night, cutting the score to 13-1. The goal happened so quickly—instant passes from Alexander Barabanov to Sergei Mozyakin to Nikolai Prokhorkin, who scored—that it seemed like a magic trick.

It was pretty clear that the Americans can skate with the Russians, and the Americans can match the Russians’ physicality, but the Americans do not have the Russians’ skill. By the time Russia scored in the final second of the second period to take a 3-0 lead, it was clear that during the next intermission U.S. coach Tony Granato would need to make a major adjustment, like switching to baseball. The final score was 4-0.

Well, we all knew the Russians were better. And maybe it was weird to see these Russians as unfeeling and evil. Pavel Datsyuk, after all, played 14 dazzling seasons in the NHL without offending anybody. He even won the Lady Byng trophy for sportsmanship and gentlemanly play four times. But if you can’t lump an entire nation of people together using lazy stereotypes, why even have the Olympics?

This was nasty and it was fun, and man, was it chippy. Prokhorkin and enormous young American Jordan Greenway fought like a divorced couple—not an all-out brawl, just constant little disputes. Greenway said later: “I don’t know really what started it. He didn’t want to let me go. He wanted to do a little dance. I’m always down for a little dance.”

I think I know what started it. I think we all do. It all goes back to Lake Placid.

The story of the 1980 U.S. men’s hockey team often gets twisted and exaggerated for maximum dramatic effect, so let’s just stick to facts: A band of gritty American amateurs, wearing skates that had been handed down from their fathers and using sticks they carved themselves, stunned a mighty Soviet Union team, propelling the Americans to the gold medal and instantly cutting the Soviet nuclear arsenal in half. The Cold War did not officially end until a few years later, when Rocky Balboa beat Ivan Drago for the heavyweight championship, but the 1980 Olympic hockey tournament was the turning point.

Let’s face it: We have spent 38 years trying to create the Miracle on Ice. We can’t shut up about it. The world got tired of hearing about it 37 years ago. When we mention Mike Eruzione at bars, other countries leave before finishing their beers. And still we keep yapping.

There is a pretty simple reason for this, and it’s not just that the U.S. won the gold medal. The U.S. has won lots of gold medals. Michael Phelps has won so many, he leaves them as tips. The Miracle on Ice allowed America to be an underdog, and we don’t get too many chances like that. It was a lot more inspiring than Charles Barkley showing up in Barcelona and snapping an Angolan in two.

The Russians are tired of hearing that story. The U.S. is their rival on every possible level. This was reinforced four years ago in Sochi, when American T.J. Oshie scored the winning goal against Russia in a shootout.

Russia’s Ilya Kovalchuk, who scored two goals Friday and looked like he might score more, said afterward, “No anger. It’s sports. It’s emotions. After that last game in Sochi. I think you guys are still showing highlights of Oshie scoring in that shootout. Hopefully you will change it now.”

Of course we won’t. Kovalchuk knows that. But the Russians earned a bye in the quarterfinal round and forced the Americans to play an extra game, which meant this was like two wins for them.

The Russians are playing for so much here—a gold medal, but also a large helping of pride. Officially, this team isn’t playing for the Russian Federation, thanks to that country’s doping sanctions. They are Olympic Athletes From Russia. The Russians wore generic red uniforms with OLYMPIC ATHLETE FROM RUSSIA on them, which had to be embarrassing for everybody involved. They looked like the t-shirts your Aunt Harriet makes everybody wear when your extended family goes on a cruise. The Russians should have just worn uniforms that read I WENT TO PYEONGCHANG AND ALL I GOT WAS THIS LOUSY HOCKEY JERSEY.

Nobody was fooled by the lousy outfit. These guys may not officially represent Russia, but they are undeniably playing for Russia.

There were Russian flags in the crowd, and rows of fans wearing shirts that spelled RUSSIA IN MY HEART and RED MACHINE, and there was Russian coach Oleg Znarok putting his stars on the power play with a four-goal lead late in the third period. U.S. Coach Tony Granato didn’t like it. The feisty Greenway —who said “I don’t see any reason why we’re not in the gold medal game”—didn’t seem to like it. Me, I loved it. Both teams can make nice when they play Switzerland. U.S.-Russia is no time to make friends.

<p>PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — For a creature of routine like American skiing superstar Mikaela Shiffrin, the waiting and waiting for her Olympics racing schedule to start was borderline tortuous. She had to find ways to keep herself relaxed as bad weather kept delaying her events. She passed the time by watching episodes of <a href="http://www.cbs.com/shows/blue_bloods/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Blue Bloods" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Blue Bloods</a>, the <a href="http://fortune.com/fortune500/cbs/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:CBS" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">CBS</a> cop drama starring <a href="http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0000633/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Tom Selleck" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Tom Selleck</a>, and her family’s favorite TV show. She texted with her sports psychologist, who urged her to stay patient and not fret about things she couldn’t control. The night before her giant slalom race on Thursday in South Korea—Wednesday evening New York time—older brother Taylor, on hand to support his sister, danced around a living room with Mikaela. “It was just like we are all together back in Colorado, goofing around and having fun,” says Taylor. “We knew it was best to keep her mind off the event.”</p><p>All the shimmying and texting and Tom Selleck paid off; Selleck, and his still excellent <a href="https://www.facebook.com/tomsellecksmustache/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:mustache" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">mustache</a>, should take a bow for entering Olympic lore. On a sun-baked day in the mountains of South Korea, Shiffrin, 22, the reigning World Cup all-around skiing champion and current top women’s skier in the world, won her first race of the <a href="http://time.com/4932670/2018-winter-olympics-when-where/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics Games" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics Games</a>, taking gold in the giant slalom Thursday afternoon at the Yongpyong Alpine Centre. The race was supposed to be be held on Monday, but <a href="http://time.com/5157372/winter-olympics-alpine-ski-race-delayed/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:wind gusts pushed the contest back" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">wind gusts pushed the contest back</a> until Thursday.</p><p>Shiffrin won’t have much time to celebrate. Her strongest event, the slalom, goes off on Friday (Thursday night in the U.S.; it was originally scheduled for Tuesday night). With a win in the slalom, Shiffrin would become the first American ski racer, woman or man, to own three Olympic gold medals. (Four years ago, she won the slalom gold in Sochi at 18 years old, becoming the youngest Olympian to ever win that race).</p><p>While Shiffrin has won four World Cup discipline titles in slalom, giant slalom—a faster technical race with less frequent turns than slalom—has proven tougher for her to master. So this gold is all that sweeter—and surprising. “Giant slalom is something I have a love-hate relationship with,” Shiffrin says. “It’s more difficult for me to find a good rhythm in GS, so I need to train it a lot, I need to be in a good mood, I need to be aggressive. I’m just starting to find some connection with that this year. To do that today was just amazing.”</p><p>Plus, for someone pursuing multiple golds like Shiffrin, a first win lifts a serious burden. “It’s really nice to know that no matter what I do, from today on, I will walk away from these Olympics with something,” she says. “I knew I could win medals in multiple disciplines, but I also knew I could have nothing, I have something now and that’s great. I can ski really for myself.”</p><p>The weather delays, however, have likely derailed her plans to pursue five Olympic medals; Shiffrin’s mother and coach, Eileen, says her daughter won’t race in Saturday’s Super-G event. A Super-G start would require completing three races in three days, a fatiguing undertaking. Eileen wants her daughter to rest, and start her training for next week’s downhill and combined events.</p><p>Shiffrin still has a chance, however, to break Janica Kostelic’s record for most gold medals won by a female alpine racer at a single Olympics. The Croatian skier took three golds at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. In short, Shiffrin’s pursuit of the Olympic skiing record book compares to what Michael Phelps accomplished in swimming.</p><p>Although the delays put a mental strain on Shiffrin, her preparation was on point. When fellow racer Sofia Goggia, of Italy, saw one of Shiffrin’s giant-slalom training runs earlier this week, her jaw dropped. The gold, Goggia told someone, was Shiffrin’s.</p><p>On the morning of the giant slalom race, her nerves didn’t feel frayed. “I was able to eat my breakfast,” says Shiffrin, “which normally on race day, is not so easy for me to do.” (Last season in particular, Shiffrin developed a nasty habit of throwing up before her races). Even though she trailed by .20 seconds after her first run, Shiffrin felt good just to be racing. “Yeah, you don’t even know!” Shiffin said after that run, with a laugh. “Last night I was like, are we ever going to race?” Weather delays can benefit a skier with Shiffrin’s skills.</p><p>Temperate conditions minimize the impact of luck; in unpredictable conditions, a sudden wind gust can propel an inferior racer forward. “It’s fair today, which is really, really important, especially at the Olympics,” Shiffrin said while the North Korean cheering squad sang its melodies from the stands at the bottom of the mountain. She felt loose in her first run, but not completely satisfied. “I feel like I can go a little bit harder,” Shiffrin said. “There’s nothing to hold back for in the second run. The nice thing about the Olympics, is you don’t hold back.”</p><p>Between runs, her mother reinforced this message: you’re skiing too well not to go for it. But some doubt crept in. “There were moments that were like, I don’t know if I’m good enough to do this,” Shiffrin says. “And there were moments that were like, ‘who cares, you’ve got to try, we’re here.&#39;” Shiffrin, who even as a middle schooler at the Burke Mountain Academy in Vermont appreciated the recuperative powers of sleep, tried napping between runs. Shiffrin didn’t completely doze off, she said after the race, but the relaxation helped.</p><p>The second-to-last racer in contention to go off, Shiffrin dug deep at the top: she needed to beat the top combined time of 2:20:41, set by Ragnhild Mowinckel of Norway. She sizzled and swerved, building speed and a lead: though she slowed a bit at the bottom, Shiffrin took the top spot, by .39 seconds, and clinched at least a silver. If Italy’s Manuela Moelgg, the last racer, couldn’t keep up, Shiffrin would win the gold.</p><p>As Moelgg moved down the mountain, she kept losing pace. Shiffrin’s father Jeff, who first put his daughter on skis when she was around two, put his hands on his hat in the stands. “Oh my God!” he said. He knew Mikaela locked it up. “This is validation for all her effort,” a joyous Jeff said afterwards. His daughter’s famous for training longer and harder than her competitors, and spending hours breaking down video, like any obsessive coach. “That’s what matters!”</p><p>Another key to Shiffrin’s success: she never let the Olympics psych her out. During an interview at the condo she shares with her parents in Avon, Colorado—near Vail—in the fall, she was asked to show off her gold medal from Sochi. One problem: she had brought it to a media event in Park City, Utah, and didn’t pack it on her carry-on back home. What Olympic champion, in their right mind, would entrust a gold medal to the airlines in checked baggage?</p><p>The medal made it home, and on that fall morning it was stuffed into a huge red duffel bag, out in the garage. Later, the hardware just sat on her kitchen table, near a collection of candy wrappers. She often keeps it wrapped in a sock, rather than displaying it in a case. Her philosophy: don’t rest on past laurels. Or put too much stock in any trophy. “I’m not taking pictures with it every day,” Shiffrin said. “It’s not the most valuable part of my life.”</p><p>Still, it’s now time for Shiffrin to get more socks.</p>
Mikaela Shiffrin Takes Home Olympic Gold Medal in Giant Slalom

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea — For a creature of routine like American skiing superstar Mikaela Shiffrin, the waiting and waiting for her Olympics racing schedule to start was borderline tortuous. She had to find ways to keep herself relaxed as bad weather kept delaying her events. She passed the time by watching episodes of Blue Bloods, the CBS cop drama starring Tom Selleck, and her family’s favorite TV show. She texted with her sports psychologist, who urged her to stay patient and not fret about things she couldn’t control. The night before her giant slalom race on Thursday in South Korea—Wednesday evening New York time—older brother Taylor, on hand to support his sister, danced around a living room with Mikaela. “It was just like we are all together back in Colorado, goofing around and having fun,” says Taylor. “We knew it was best to keep her mind off the event.”

All the shimmying and texting and Tom Selleck paid off; Selleck, and his still excellent mustache, should take a bow for entering Olympic lore. On a sun-baked day in the mountains of South Korea, Shiffrin, 22, the reigning World Cup all-around skiing champion and current top women’s skier in the world, won her first race of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics Games, taking gold in the giant slalom Thursday afternoon at the Yongpyong Alpine Centre. The race was supposed to be be held on Monday, but wind gusts pushed the contest back until Thursday.

Shiffrin won’t have much time to celebrate. Her strongest event, the slalom, goes off on Friday (Thursday night in the U.S.; it was originally scheduled for Tuesday night). With a win in the slalom, Shiffrin would become the first American ski racer, woman or man, to own three Olympic gold medals. (Four years ago, she won the slalom gold in Sochi at 18 years old, becoming the youngest Olympian to ever win that race).

While Shiffrin has won four World Cup discipline titles in slalom, giant slalom—a faster technical race with less frequent turns than slalom—has proven tougher for her to master. So this gold is all that sweeter—and surprising. “Giant slalom is something I have a love-hate relationship with,” Shiffrin says. “It’s more difficult for me to find a good rhythm in GS, so I need to train it a lot, I need to be in a good mood, I need to be aggressive. I’m just starting to find some connection with that this year. To do that today was just amazing.”

Plus, for someone pursuing multiple golds like Shiffrin, a first win lifts a serious burden. “It’s really nice to know that no matter what I do, from today on, I will walk away from these Olympics with something,” she says. “I knew I could win medals in multiple disciplines, but I also knew I could have nothing, I have something now and that’s great. I can ski really for myself.”

The weather delays, however, have likely derailed her plans to pursue five Olympic medals; Shiffrin’s mother and coach, Eileen, says her daughter won’t race in Saturday’s Super-G event. A Super-G start would require completing three races in three days, a fatiguing undertaking. Eileen wants her daughter to rest, and start her training for next week’s downhill and combined events.

Shiffrin still has a chance, however, to break Janica Kostelic’s record for most gold medals won by a female alpine racer at a single Olympics. The Croatian skier took three golds at the 2002 Salt Lake City Games. In short, Shiffrin’s pursuit of the Olympic skiing record book compares to what Michael Phelps accomplished in swimming.

Although the delays put a mental strain on Shiffrin, her preparation was on point. When fellow racer Sofia Goggia, of Italy, saw one of Shiffrin’s giant-slalom training runs earlier this week, her jaw dropped. The gold, Goggia told someone, was Shiffrin’s.

On the morning of the giant slalom race, her nerves didn’t feel frayed. “I was able to eat my breakfast,” says Shiffrin, “which normally on race day, is not so easy for me to do.” (Last season in particular, Shiffrin developed a nasty habit of throwing up before her races). Even though she trailed by .20 seconds after her first run, Shiffrin felt good just to be racing. “Yeah, you don’t even know!” Shiffin said after that run, with a laugh. “Last night I was like, are we ever going to race?” Weather delays can benefit a skier with Shiffrin’s skills.

Temperate conditions minimize the impact of luck; in unpredictable conditions, a sudden wind gust can propel an inferior racer forward. “It’s fair today, which is really, really important, especially at the Olympics,” Shiffrin said while the North Korean cheering squad sang its melodies from the stands at the bottom of the mountain. She felt loose in her first run, but not completely satisfied. “I feel like I can go a little bit harder,” Shiffrin said. “There’s nothing to hold back for in the second run. The nice thing about the Olympics, is you don’t hold back.”

Between runs, her mother reinforced this message: you’re skiing too well not to go for it. But some doubt crept in. “There were moments that were like, I don’t know if I’m good enough to do this,” Shiffrin says. “And there were moments that were like, ‘who cares, you’ve got to try, we’re here.'” Shiffrin, who even as a middle schooler at the Burke Mountain Academy in Vermont appreciated the recuperative powers of sleep, tried napping between runs. Shiffrin didn’t completely doze off, she said after the race, but the relaxation helped.

The second-to-last racer in contention to go off, Shiffrin dug deep at the top: she needed to beat the top combined time of 2:20:41, set by Ragnhild Mowinckel of Norway. She sizzled and swerved, building speed and a lead: though she slowed a bit at the bottom, Shiffrin took the top spot, by .39 seconds, and clinched at least a silver. If Italy’s Manuela Moelgg, the last racer, couldn’t keep up, Shiffrin would win the gold.

As Moelgg moved down the mountain, she kept losing pace. Shiffrin’s father Jeff, who first put his daughter on skis when she was around two, put his hands on his hat in the stands. “Oh my God!” he said. He knew Mikaela locked it up. “This is validation for all her effort,” a joyous Jeff said afterwards. His daughter’s famous for training longer and harder than her competitors, and spending hours breaking down video, like any obsessive coach. “That’s what matters!”

Another key to Shiffrin’s success: she never let the Olympics psych her out. During an interview at the condo she shares with her parents in Avon, Colorado—near Vail—in the fall, she was asked to show off her gold medal from Sochi. One problem: she had brought it to a media event in Park City, Utah, and didn’t pack it on her carry-on back home. What Olympic champion, in their right mind, would entrust a gold medal to the airlines in checked baggage?

The medal made it home, and on that fall morning it was stuffed into a huge red duffel bag, out in the garage. Later, the hardware just sat on her kitchen table, near a collection of candy wrappers. She often keeps it wrapped in a sock, rather than displaying it in a case. Her philosophy: don’t rest on past laurels. Or put too much stock in any trophy. “I’m not taking pictures with it every day,” Shiffrin said. “It’s not the most valuable part of my life.”

Still, it’s now time for Shiffrin to get more socks.

<p>American <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/10/mikaela-shiffrin-reluctant-star-winter-olympics-2018-pyeongchang-michael-phelps" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Mikaela Shiffrin" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Mikaela Shiffrin</a> captured the gold medal in the women&#39;s giant slalom at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.</p><p>Shiffrin was in second place after the first run in the final, sandwiched between Italians Manuela Moelgg (first) and Federica Brignone (third). Shiffrin&#39;s time of 1:10.82 in the first run was 0.2 seconds slower than Moelgg and 0.09 seconds faster than Brignone.</p><p>In the second run, Shiffrin posted a tome of 1:09.20, giving her a total time 2:20.02, which vaulted her into first place. Moelgg fell to eighth after a 1:10.58 second run gave her a total time of 2:21.20, while Norway&#39;s Ragnhild Mowinckel climbed into second and Brigone held onto third place.</p><p>This is Shiffrin&#39;s second career Olympic gold medal. In 2014 she captured the gold in women&#39;s slalom. She will defend that medal Thursday night.</p><p>• <strong><a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/01/29/mikaela-shiffrin-winter-olympics-2018-pyeongchang" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Guts Over Fear: An Aggressive State of Mind Helped Mikaela Shiffrin Conquer Her Anxiety On The Slopes" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Guts Over Fear: An Aggressive State of Mind Helped Mikaela Shiffrin Conquer Her Anxiety On The Slopes</a></strong></p><p>This medal brings the <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/team-usa-medal-tracker-pyeongchang-olympic-games-results-medals-won" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Team USA&#39;s total medal" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Team USA&#39;s total medal</a> count to eight and the gold medal count to five. You can check out a full medal count for the 2018 Winter Olympics <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/medals/country" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:here" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">here</a>.</p>
Mikaela Shiffrin Gets Gold In Women's Giant Slalom

American Mikaela Shiffrin captured the gold medal in the women's giant slalom at the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympics.

Shiffrin was in second place after the first run in the final, sandwiched between Italians Manuela Moelgg (first) and Federica Brignone (third). Shiffrin's time of 1:10.82 in the first run was 0.2 seconds slower than Moelgg and 0.09 seconds faster than Brignone.

In the second run, Shiffrin posted a tome of 1:09.20, giving her a total time 2:20.02, which vaulted her into first place. Moelgg fell to eighth after a 1:10.58 second run gave her a total time of 2:21.20, while Norway's Ragnhild Mowinckel climbed into second and Brigone held onto third place.

This is Shiffrin's second career Olympic gold medal. In 2014 she captured the gold in women's slalom. She will defend that medal Thursday night.

Guts Over Fear: An Aggressive State of Mind Helped Mikaela Shiffrin Conquer Her Anxiety On The Slopes

This medal brings the Team USA's total medal count to eight and the gold medal count to five. You can check out a full medal count for the 2018 Winter Olympics here.

His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
TRENDING: Olympic Swimmer Michael Phelps Welcomes Another Baby Boy
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
TRENDING: Olympic Swimmer Michael Phelps Welcomes Another Baby Boy
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
TRENDING: Olympic Swimmer Michael Phelps Welcomes Another Baby Boy
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
TRENDING: Olympic Swimmer Michael Phelps Welcomes Another Baby Boy
His wife Nicole gave birth Monday to little Beckett Phelps
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
American swimming superstar Michael Phelps and his wife, Nicole, announced the birth of Beckett Phelps their second child (AFP Photo/GABRIEL BOUYS )
American swimming superstar Michael Phelps and his wife, Nicole, announced the birth of Beckett Phelps their second child
American swimming superstar Michael Phelps and his wife, Nicole, announced the birth of Beckett Phelps their second child (AFP Photo/GABRIEL BOUYS )
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps, Wife Welcome Second Child; Another Boy
Michael Phelps announced on Instagram Tuesday that he and his wife welcomed a healthy baby boy to the world Monday.
Michael Phelps announces birth of second son (and posts a picture)
Michael Phelps announces birth of second son (and posts a picture)
Michael Phelps announces birth of second son (and posts a picture)
Michael Phelps announces birth of second son (and posts a picture)
Michael Phelps announces birth of second son (and posts a picture)
Michael Phelps announces birth of second son (and posts a picture)
Michael Phelps and Nicole Johnson welcome baby No. 2
Michael Phelps and Nicole Johnson welcome baby No. 2
Michael Phelps and Nicole Johnson welcome baby No. 2
Michael Phelps and Nicole Johnson welcome baby No. 2
Michael Phelps and Nicole Johnson welcome baby No. 2
Michael Phelps and Nicole Johnson welcome baby No. 2
<p>While the Winter Olympics are in full swing in PyeongChang, halfway across the globe the world&#39;s most decorated Olympian ever welcomed the birth of his second son. </p><p>Twenty-three time gold medalist swimmer Michael Phelps announced on Instagram that his wife had given birth on Monday to the couple&#39;s second son, Beckett. The couple&#39;s other son, Boomer, was born in May 2016. </p><p>&quot;Magical moments yesterday...,&quot; Phelps, 32, wrote in the post&#39;s caption. &quot;Nicole and I would like to introduce Beckett Richard Phelps to the world! We had a healthy baby boy and a healthy mama. I truly do feel like the happiest man in the world. Being able to build our family to now 4 (6 with doggies) is so incredible! #familyof4now&quot;</p><p>?Phelps, who has 28 medals in total, won five golds and a silver at last year&#39;s Olympics in Rio before announcing his retirement shortly after the Games. He remains in swimming shape but has not given any indication that he&#39;s considering trying to qualify for Tokyo 2020. </p>
Michael Phelps Announces Birth of Second Son, Beckett

While the Winter Olympics are in full swing in PyeongChang, halfway across the globe the world's most decorated Olympian ever welcomed the birth of his second son.

Twenty-three time gold medalist swimmer Michael Phelps announced on Instagram that his wife had given birth on Monday to the couple's second son, Beckett. The couple's other son, Boomer, was born in May 2016.

"Magical moments yesterday...," Phelps, 32, wrote in the post's caption. "Nicole and I would like to introduce Beckett Richard Phelps to the world! We had a healthy baby boy and a healthy mama. I truly do feel like the happiest man in the world. Being able to build our family to now 4 (6 with doggies) is so incredible! #familyof4now"

?Phelps, who has 28 medals in total, won five golds and a silver at last year's Olympics in Rio before announcing his retirement shortly after the Games. He remains in swimming shape but has not given any indication that he's considering trying to qualify for Tokyo 2020.

Michael Phelps finished his career with 23 Olympic gold medals and skiing champion Mikaela Shiffrin played down any comparisons.
Winter Olympics 2018: Mikaela Shiffrin dismisses Michael Phelps comparisons
Michael Phelps finished his career with 23 Olympic gold medals and skiing champion Mikaela Shiffrin played down any comparisons.
<p>Welcome back to SI’s Daily Olympic Digest! A lot happened while we were asleep here in the U.S., so let’s get caught up.</p><p>The first medals of PyeongChang have been awarded! Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla won the first gold medal of the games in women’s skiathlon. Kalla, 30, beat out Norwegian favorite Marit Bjorgen, but Bjorgen’s silver medal gives her 11 in her career, the most of any female in Winter Olympics history. Jessie Diggins was a hopeful to medal for the U.S., but finished fifth—still the best finish ever for a U.S. woman in an Olympic cross-country skiing event.</p><p>The highly anticipated debut of the unified Korean women’s hockey team didn’t go so well: it fell 8-0 to a speedy Switzerland squad, led by Alina Muller&#39;s four goals, which tied the women’s hockey Olympic record. Korean goalie Sojuing Shin made 44 saves in the loss, providing excitement for the packed and boisterous crowd, which included dignitaries from both North and South Korea.</p><p>Women’s short track speedskating is where all the action’s at! Speed skating is South Korea’s favorite Winter Olympics sport. Their star, Choi Min-jeong, set a new Olympic record, clocking in at 42.870 seconds, and advanced to the quarterfinals of the 500m race. Maame Biney, U.S. first-time Olympian and our Athlete To Root For in <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/daily-olympic-digest-pyeongchang-day-one-opening-ceremony" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Friday&#39;s Daily Digest" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Friday&#39;s Daily Digest</a>, also moved on to the quarterfinals of the event.</p><p>The phenomenon that is mixed doubles curling has officially shuffled to a close for the U.S. in the inaugural event. Siblings Becca and Matt Hamilton, aka the Ham Fam, were eliminated from the round robin event on Saturday by China. The Hamiltons finished with a 1-4 record for the competition.</p><h3><strong>MUST-WATCH EVENTS</strong></h3><p><em>Team Event: Ice Dance Short Dance/ Ladies Single Skating Short Program/ Pairs Free Skating (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)</em></p><p>The U.S. is ranked second in skating team events heading into Saturday&#39;s programs. Canada leads (17), followed by the U.S. (14), while Japan and Russia are tied for third (13). Married couple Chris Knierim and Alexa Scimeca-Knierim had a terrific skate Thursday night during the team short program but landed in fourth place. Look for them to continue their quest for a medal tonight. Also watch out for the popular ice dancing Shib sibs, Maia and Alex Shibutani, who will make their team event debut tonight. Bradie Tennell, 20, will step onto Olympic ice for the first time tonight for the U.S. in the ladies’ single short team program.</p><p><em>Men’s Slopestyle Snowboarding Finals (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)</em></p><p>Move over Shaun White. While the 31-year-old chose to not compete in the slopestyle in PyeongChang, Red Gerard is ready to be the new face of the event. The 17-year-old and first-time Olympian secured a place in the finals. If he medals in this Olympics, Gerard would become the youngest American snowboarder to do so.</p><p><em>Women’s Ice Hockey Preliminary Round USA v. Finland (3:00 AM ET live on NBCSN)</em></p><p>Yes, I know this one is for the early risers. The U.S. women’s hockey team lost the gold medal to Canada in Sochi in 2014, but before the Americans get a rematch with their rivals from the north, they&#39;ll have to get through a tough Finnish team that&#39;s on the rise and would love nothing more than to score an early upset in the tournament. </p><p><em>Men’s Biathlon 10km Sprint Finals (5:00 AM ET Sunday; live on NBCSN. It will re-air in NBC’s coverage that begins at 3:00 PM ET Sunday.)</em></p><p>The U.S. has never won an Olympic medal in the biathlon event. Lowell Bailey leads the way for the Americans as he goes up against defending Olympic gold medalist Dario Cologna of Switzerland.</p><p><em>Men’s Luge Singles Finals (4:50 AM ET Sunday streaming live on NBCOlympics.com; Airing at 1:30 PM ET on NBCSN and again in NBC’s coverage beginning 7 PM ET Sunday night.)</em></p><p>Chris Mazdzer of the U.S. heads into the final two runs of luge competition in fourth place. The big contender to beat is German Felix Loch, who is looking to win his third straight gold medal in the event.</p><h3><strong>MEDAL COUNT</strong></h3><h3><strong>TWEET OF THE DAY</strong></h3><p>Apparently Lindsey Vonn’s dog, Lucy, had quite the trek to South Korea. All that travel wore her out. People were worried about Lucy’s jet lag when this photo of her with Vonn surfaced on Twitter.</p><p>Lucy captured how yearbook photo day at school often turns out for us humans. You think you look good... until you see the photo and realize you don’t. We’ve all been there, Lucy.</p><h3><strong>DAILY READING AND VIDEOS</strong></h3><p>Our intrepid staff on the ground in PyeongChang and in our New York office is already cranking away on the biggest stories so far from the games.</p><p>Our Michael Rosenberg <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/10/mikaela-shiffrin-reluctant-star-winter-olympics-2018-pyeongchang-michael-phelps" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:explores Mikaela Shiffrin’s rise" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">explores Mikaela Shiffrin’s rise</a> as a star He also took a look at <a href="https://edit.si.com/olympics/2018/02/10/lim-hyojun-speedskating-gold-medal-olympics-shared-experience" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:a perfect Olympic story" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">a perfect Olympic story</a> in Korean speedskater Lim Hyojun. Tim Layden <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/hermann-maier-nagano-olympic-crash-photo" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:tells the story" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">tells the story</a> of Hermann Maier&#39;s horrific 1998 crash, and the photographer who captured it Michael Blinn introduces us to the U.S. women’s hockey team, which features <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/08/usa-womens-hockey-scouting-knight-duggan-brandt" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:13 first-time Olympians" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">13 first-time Olympians</a>. Here&#39;s an Olympic curler that looks just like <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/internet-convinced-olympic-curler-looks-exactly-super-mario-0" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:everyone&#39;s favorite video game plumber" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">everyone&#39;s favorite video game plumber</a> The <a href="http://www.si.com/olympics/video/2018/02/09/true-comeback-story-shaun-white" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:true comeback story" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">true comeback story</a> for Shaun White Here&#39;s what you <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/pyeongchang-olympics-opening-ceremony-notes" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:didn&#39;t see" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">didn&#39;t see</a> at the Opening Ceremonies</p><h3><strong>ATHLETE(S) TO ROOT FOR</strong></h3><p><em>Alex and Maia Shibutani</em></p><p>The popular ice dancing Shib Sibs competed in Sochi but did not medal. They make their team debut tonight in the ice dancing event and are expected to do well for the U.S. throughout the games. Winning an Olympic medal would put them in rare company: no brother-sister duo has medaled since 1984 when American skaters Kitty and Peter Carruthers won silver.</p><p>Get to know more about the Shibutani siblings <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/video/2018/01/25/meet-team-usa-alex-and-maia-shibutani" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:in this fun video" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">in this fun video</a>.</p>
Daily Olympic Digest: We're Off and Running in PyeongChang!

Welcome back to SI’s Daily Olympic Digest! A lot happened while we were asleep here in the U.S., so let’s get caught up.

The first medals of PyeongChang have been awarded! Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla won the first gold medal of the games in women’s skiathlon. Kalla, 30, beat out Norwegian favorite Marit Bjorgen, but Bjorgen’s silver medal gives her 11 in her career, the most of any female in Winter Olympics history. Jessie Diggins was a hopeful to medal for the U.S., but finished fifth—still the best finish ever for a U.S. woman in an Olympic cross-country skiing event.

The highly anticipated debut of the unified Korean women’s hockey team didn’t go so well: it fell 8-0 to a speedy Switzerland squad, led by Alina Muller's four goals, which tied the women’s hockey Olympic record. Korean goalie Sojuing Shin made 44 saves in the loss, providing excitement for the packed and boisterous crowd, which included dignitaries from both North and South Korea.

Women’s short track speedskating is where all the action’s at! Speed skating is South Korea’s favorite Winter Olympics sport. Their star, Choi Min-jeong, set a new Olympic record, clocking in at 42.870 seconds, and advanced to the quarterfinals of the 500m race. Maame Biney, U.S. first-time Olympian and our Athlete To Root For in Friday's Daily Digest, also moved on to the quarterfinals of the event.

The phenomenon that is mixed doubles curling has officially shuffled to a close for the U.S. in the inaugural event. Siblings Becca and Matt Hamilton, aka the Ham Fam, were eliminated from the round robin event on Saturday by China. The Hamiltons finished with a 1-4 record for the competition.

MUST-WATCH EVENTS

Team Event: Ice Dance Short Dance/ Ladies Single Skating Short Program/ Pairs Free Skating (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)

The U.S. is ranked second in skating team events heading into Saturday's programs. Canada leads (17), followed by the U.S. (14), while Japan and Russia are tied for third (13). Married couple Chris Knierim and Alexa Scimeca-Knierim had a terrific skate Thursday night during the team short program but landed in fourth place. Look for them to continue their quest for a medal tonight. Also watch out for the popular ice dancing Shib sibs, Maia and Alex Shibutani, who will make their team event debut tonight. Bradie Tennell, 20, will step onto Olympic ice for the first time tonight for the U.S. in the ladies’ single short team program.

Men’s Slopestyle Snowboarding Finals (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)

Move over Shaun White. While the 31-year-old chose to not compete in the slopestyle in PyeongChang, Red Gerard is ready to be the new face of the event. The 17-year-old and first-time Olympian secured a place in the finals. If he medals in this Olympics, Gerard would become the youngest American snowboarder to do so.

Women’s Ice Hockey Preliminary Round USA v. Finland (3:00 AM ET live on NBCSN)

Yes, I know this one is for the early risers. The U.S. women’s hockey team lost the gold medal to Canada in Sochi in 2014, but before the Americans get a rematch with their rivals from the north, they'll have to get through a tough Finnish team that's on the rise and would love nothing more than to score an early upset in the tournament.

Men’s Biathlon 10km Sprint Finals (5:00 AM ET Sunday; live on NBCSN. It will re-air in NBC’s coverage that begins at 3:00 PM ET Sunday.)

The U.S. has never won an Olympic medal in the biathlon event. Lowell Bailey leads the way for the Americans as he goes up against defending Olympic gold medalist Dario Cologna of Switzerland.

Men’s Luge Singles Finals (4:50 AM ET Sunday streaming live on NBCOlympics.com; Airing at 1:30 PM ET on NBCSN and again in NBC’s coverage beginning 7 PM ET Sunday night.)

Chris Mazdzer of the U.S. heads into the final two runs of luge competition in fourth place. The big contender to beat is German Felix Loch, who is looking to win his third straight gold medal in the event.

MEDAL COUNT

TWEET OF THE DAY

Apparently Lindsey Vonn’s dog, Lucy, had quite the trek to South Korea. All that travel wore her out. People were worried about Lucy’s jet lag when this photo of her with Vonn surfaced on Twitter.

Lucy captured how yearbook photo day at school often turns out for us humans. You think you look good... until you see the photo and realize you don’t. We’ve all been there, Lucy.

DAILY READING AND VIDEOS

Our intrepid staff on the ground in PyeongChang and in our New York office is already cranking away on the biggest stories so far from the games.

Our Michael Rosenberg explores Mikaela Shiffrin’s rise as a star He also took a look at a perfect Olympic story in Korean speedskater Lim Hyojun. Tim Layden tells the story of Hermann Maier's horrific 1998 crash, and the photographer who captured it Michael Blinn introduces us to the U.S. women’s hockey team, which features 13 first-time Olympians. Here's an Olympic curler that looks just like everyone's favorite video game plumber The true comeback story for Shaun White Here's what you didn't see at the Opening Ceremonies

ATHLETE(S) TO ROOT FOR

Alex and Maia Shibutani

The popular ice dancing Shib Sibs competed in Sochi but did not medal. They make their team debut tonight in the ice dancing event and are expected to do well for the U.S. throughout the games. Winning an Olympic medal would put them in rare company: no brother-sister duo has medaled since 1984 when American skaters Kitty and Peter Carruthers won silver.

Get to know more about the Shibutani siblings in this fun video.

<p>Welcome back to SI’s Daily Olympic Digest! A lot happened while we were asleep here in the U.S., so let’s get caught up.</p><p>The first medals of PyeongChang have been awarded! Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla won the first gold medal of the games in women’s skiathlon. Kalla, 30, beat out Norwegian favorite Marit Bjorgen, but Bjorgen’s silver medal gives her 11 in her career, the most of any female in Winter Olympics history. Jessie Diggins was a hopeful to medal for the U.S., but finished fifth—still the best finish ever for a U.S. woman in an Olympic cross-country skiing event.</p><p>The highly anticipated debut of the unified Korean women’s hockey team didn’t go so well: it fell 8-0 to a speedy Switzerland squad, led by Alina Muller&#39;s four goals, which tied the women’s hockey Olympic record. Korean goalie Sojuing Shin made 44 saves in the loss, providing excitement for the packed and boisterous crowd, which included dignitaries from both North and South Korea.</p><p>Women’s short track speedskating is where all the action’s at! Speed skating is South Korea’s favorite Winter Olympics sport. Their star, Choi Min-jeong, set a new Olympic record, clocking in at 42.870 seconds, and advanced to the quarterfinals of the 500m race. Maame Biney, U.S. first-time Olympian and our Athlete To Root For in <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/daily-olympic-digest-pyeongchang-day-one-opening-ceremony" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Friday&#39;s Daily Digest" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Friday&#39;s Daily Digest</a>, also moved on to the quarterfinals of the event.</p><p>The phenomenon that is mixed doubles curling has officially shuffled to a close for the U.S. in the inaugural event. Siblings Becca and Matt Hamilton, aka the Ham Fam, were eliminated from the round robin event on Saturday by China. The Hamiltons finished with a 1-4 record for the competition.</p><h3><strong>MUST-WATCH EVENTS</strong></h3><p><em>Team Event: Ice Dance Short Dance/ Ladies Single Skating Short Program/ Pairs Free Skating (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)</em></p><p>The U.S. is ranked second in skating team events heading into Saturday&#39;s programs. Canada leads (17), followed by the U.S. (14), while Japan and Russia are tied for third (13). Married couple Chris Knierim and Alexa Scimeca-Knierim had a terrific skate Thursday night during the team short program but landed in fourth place. Look for them to continue their quest for a medal tonight. Also watch out for the popular ice dancing Shib sibs, Maia and Alex Shibutani, who will make their team event debut tonight. Bradie Tennell, 20, will step onto Olympic ice for the first time tonight for the U.S. in the ladies’ single short team program.</p><p><em>Men’s Slopestyle Snowboarding Finals (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)</em></p><p>Move over Shaun White. While the 31-year-old chose to not compete in the slopestyle in PyeongChang, Red Gerard is ready to be the new face of the event. The 17-year-old and first-time Olympian secured a place in the finals. If he medals in this Olympics, Gerard would become the youngest American snowboarder to do so.</p><p><em>Women’s Ice Hockey Preliminary Round USA v. Finland (3:00 AM ET live on NBCSN)</em></p><p>Yes, I know this one is for the early risers. The U.S. women’s hockey team lost the gold medal to Canada in Sochi in 2014, but before the Americans get a rematch with their rivals from the north, they&#39;ll have to get through a tough Finnish team that&#39;s on the rise and would love nothing more than to score an early upset in the tournament. </p><p><em>Men’s Biathlon 10km Sprint Finals (5:00 AM ET Sunday; live on NBCSN. It will re-air in NBC’s coverage that begins at 3:00 PM ET Sunday.)</em></p><p>The U.S. has never won an Olympic medal in the biathlon event. Lowell Bailey leads the way for the Americans as he goes up against defending Olympic gold medalist Dario Cologna of Switzerland.</p><p><em>Men’s Luge Singles Finals (4:50 AM ET Sunday streaming live on NBCOlympics.com; Airing at 1:30 PM ET on NBCSN and again in NBC’s coverage beginning 7 PM ET Sunday night.)</em></p><p>Chris Mazdzer of the U.S. heads into the final two runs of luge competition in fourth place. The big contender to beat is German Felix Loch, who is looking to win his third straight gold medal in the event.</p><h3><strong>MEDAL COUNT</strong></h3><h3><strong>TWEET OF THE DAY</strong></h3><p>Apparently Lindsey Vonn’s dog, Lucy, had quite the trek to South Korea. All that travel wore her out. People were worried about Lucy’s jet lag when this photo of her with Vonn surfaced on Twitter.</p><p>Lucy captured how yearbook photo day at school often turns out for us humans. You think you look good... until you see the photo and realize you don’t. We’ve all been there, Lucy.</p><h3><strong>DAILY READING AND VIDEOS</strong></h3><p>Our intrepid staff on the ground in PyeongChang and in our New York office is already cranking away on the biggest stories so far from the games.</p><p>Our Michael Rosenberg <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/10/mikaela-shiffrin-reluctant-star-winter-olympics-2018-pyeongchang-michael-phelps" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:explores Mikaela Shiffrin’s rise" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">explores Mikaela Shiffrin’s rise</a> as a star He also took a look at <a href="https://edit.si.com/olympics/2018/02/10/lim-hyojun-speedskating-gold-medal-olympics-shared-experience" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:a perfect Olympic story" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">a perfect Olympic story</a> in Korean speedskater Lim Hyojun. Tim Layden <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/hermann-maier-nagano-olympic-crash-photo" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:tells the story" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">tells the story</a> of Hermann Maier&#39;s horrific 1998 crash, and the photographer who captured it Michael Blinn introduces us to the U.S. women’s hockey team, which features <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/08/usa-womens-hockey-scouting-knight-duggan-brandt" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:13 first-time Olympians" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">13 first-time Olympians</a>. Here&#39;s an Olympic curler that looks just like <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/internet-convinced-olympic-curler-looks-exactly-super-mario-0" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:everyone&#39;s favorite video game plumber" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">everyone&#39;s favorite video game plumber</a> The <a href="http://www.si.com/olympics/video/2018/02/09/true-comeback-story-shaun-white" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:true comeback story" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">true comeback story</a> for Shaun White Here&#39;s what you <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2018/02/09/pyeongchang-olympics-opening-ceremony-notes" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:didn&#39;t see" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">didn&#39;t see</a> at the Opening Ceremonies</p><h3><strong>ATHLETE(S) TO ROOT FOR</strong></h3><p><em>Alex and Maia Shibutani</em></p><p>The popular ice dancing Shib Sibs competed in Sochi but did not medal. They make their team debut tonight in the ice dancing event and are expected to do well for the U.S. throughout the games. Winning an Olympic medal would put them in rare company: no brother-sister duo has medaled since 1984 when American skaters Kitty and Peter Carruthers won silver.</p><p>Get to know more about the Shibutani siblings <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/video/2018/01/25/meet-team-usa-alex-and-maia-shibutani" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:in this fun video" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">in this fun video</a>.</p>
Daily Olympic Digest: We're Off and Running in PyeongChang!

Welcome back to SI’s Daily Olympic Digest! A lot happened while we were asleep here in the U.S., so let’s get caught up.

The first medals of PyeongChang have been awarded! Sweden’s Charlotte Kalla won the first gold medal of the games in women’s skiathlon. Kalla, 30, beat out Norwegian favorite Marit Bjorgen, but Bjorgen’s silver medal gives her 11 in her career, the most of any female in Winter Olympics history. Jessie Diggins was a hopeful to medal for the U.S., but finished fifth—still the best finish ever for a U.S. woman in an Olympic cross-country skiing event.

The highly anticipated debut of the unified Korean women’s hockey team didn’t go so well: it fell 8-0 to a speedy Switzerland squad, led by Alina Muller's four goals, which tied the women’s hockey Olympic record. Korean goalie Sojuing Shin made 44 saves in the loss, providing excitement for the packed and boisterous crowd, which included dignitaries from both North and South Korea.

Women’s short track speedskating is where all the action’s at! Speed skating is South Korea’s favorite Winter Olympics sport. Their star, Choi Min-jeong, set a new Olympic record, clocking in at 42.870 seconds, and advanced to the quarterfinals of the 500m race. Maame Biney, U.S. first-time Olympian and our Athlete To Root For in Friday's Daily Digest, also moved on to the quarterfinals of the event.

The phenomenon that is mixed doubles curling has officially shuffled to a close for the U.S. in the inaugural event. Siblings Becca and Matt Hamilton, aka the Ham Fam, were eliminated from the round robin event on Saturday by China. The Hamiltons finished with a 1-4 record for the competition.

MUST-WATCH EVENTS

Team Event: Ice Dance Short Dance/ Ladies Single Skating Short Program/ Pairs Free Skating (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)

The U.S. is ranked second in skating team events heading into Saturday's programs. Canada leads (17), followed by the U.S. (14), while Japan and Russia are tied for third (13). Married couple Chris Knierim and Alexa Scimeca-Knierim had a terrific skate Thursday night during the team short program but landed in fourth place. Look for them to continue their quest for a medal tonight. Also watch out for the popular ice dancing Shib sibs, Maia and Alex Shibutani, who will make their team event debut tonight. Bradie Tennell, 20, will step onto Olympic ice for the first time tonight for the U.S. in the ladies’ single short team program.

Men’s Slopestyle Snowboarding Finals (8:00 PM ET Saturday on NBC)

Move over Shaun White. While the 31-year-old chose to not compete in the slopestyle in PyeongChang, Red Gerard is ready to be the new face of the event. The 17-year-old and first-time Olympian secured a place in the finals. If he medals in this Olympics, Gerard would become the youngest American snowboarder to do so.

Women’s Ice Hockey Preliminary Round USA v. Finland (3:00 AM ET live on NBCSN)

Yes, I know this one is for the early risers. The U.S. women’s hockey team lost the gold medal to Canada in Sochi in 2014, but before the Americans get a rematch with their rivals from the north, they'll have to get through a tough Finnish team that's on the rise and would love nothing more than to score an early upset in the tournament.

Men’s Biathlon 10km Sprint Finals (5:00 AM ET Sunday; live on NBCSN. It will re-air in NBC’s coverage that begins at 3:00 PM ET Sunday.)

The U.S. has never won an Olympic medal in the biathlon event. Lowell Bailey leads the way for the Americans as he goes up against defending Olympic gold medalist Dario Cologna of Switzerland.

Men’s Luge Singles Finals (4:50 AM ET Sunday streaming live on NBCOlympics.com; Airing at 1:30 PM ET on NBCSN and again in NBC’s coverage beginning 7 PM ET Sunday night.)

Chris Mazdzer of the U.S. heads into the final two runs of luge competition in fourth place. The big contender to beat is German Felix Loch, who is looking to win his third straight gold medal in the event.

MEDAL COUNT

TWEET OF THE DAY

Apparently Lindsey Vonn’s dog, Lucy, had quite the trek to South Korea. All that travel wore her out. People were worried about Lucy’s jet lag when this photo of her with Vonn surfaced on Twitter.

Lucy captured how yearbook photo day at school often turns out for us humans. You think you look good... until you see the photo and realize you don’t. We’ve all been there, Lucy.

DAILY READING AND VIDEOS

Our intrepid staff on the ground in PyeongChang and in our New York office is already cranking away on the biggest stories so far from the games.

Our Michael Rosenberg explores Mikaela Shiffrin’s rise as a star He also took a look at a perfect Olympic story in Korean speedskater Lim Hyojun. Tim Layden tells the story of Hermann Maier's horrific 1998 crash, and the photographer who captured it Michael Blinn introduces us to the U.S. women’s hockey team, which features 13 first-time Olympians. Here's an Olympic curler that looks just like everyone's favorite video game plumber The true comeback story for Shaun White Here's what you didn't see at the Opening Ceremonies

ATHLETE(S) TO ROOT FOR

Alex and Maia Shibutani

The popular ice dancing Shib Sibs competed in Sochi but did not medal. They make their team debut tonight in the ice dancing event and are expected to do well for the U.S. throughout the games. Winning an Olympic medal would put them in rare company: no brother-sister duo has medaled since 1984 when American skaters Kitty and Peter Carruthers won silver.

Get to know more about the Shibutani siblings in this fun video.

<p>PYEONGCHANG, South Korea—Mikaela Shiffrin made a crack about the enormous table she would sit behind for her press conference, sat down and tried to break the ice.</p><p>“Hi guys, how are you?” she said.</p><p>There was no way for a roomful of journalists to answer that question.</p><p>“Just wanted to say ‘Hey,’” Shiffrin said.</p><p>The Olympics produce many medalists but only a few stars. Winning a medal takes talent, dedication and sometimes a little luck. Becoming a star requires qualities that are harder to define. Usain Bolt is a star. Lindsey Vonn is a star—not just in the skiing world, but beyond. One interesting subplot of these Olympics is whether Shiffrin will join them.</p><p>Shiffrin held her pre-Olympics press conference here Saturday. It was scheduled for 30 minutes but cut down to 20 before it began. Shiffrin is poised and gives thoughtful answers to reporters’ questions, though she is a bit self-conscious in a public setting. If she were your sister or friend, you might get nervous watching her.</p><p>When her moderator mentioned that the media could come watch Shiffrin’s training runs, she cracked, “Or don’t come. Whatever.” She pointed out that “this is the biggest press conference I’ve done all season.” She said keeps her medals tucked away inside socks. (Be careful with your laundry, Mikaela). She said she does have a few mementos hanging in her home, but quickly added that was only because she had “dead space on my wall.” After relaying what she has done since arriving in Korea more than a week ago—mostly sleep, train and eat—she said, “I’m fairly boring. You guys will find that out throughout these games.” It is hard to build an ad campaign around that.</p><p>Shiffrin is an undeniable star on the slopes; her accomplishments before the age of 23 are unprecedented. She may win so many medals this week that she joins Bolt and Michael Phelps as an Olympian everybody recognizes. In the meantime, she is caught in this odd cultural place: she has not yet transcended her sport, but she might.</p><p>Vonn seems to have done it, and she seems to have wanted to do it. She is skilled at crafting an image without seeming like she is trying too hard to craft an image. She lets us in on her life and says just enough to keep fans wanting more. She kept her married name, Vonn, after her divorce, well-aware that <em>Lindsey Vonn</em> is not just her name. It is an internationally recognized brand. Her maiden name, Lindsey Kildow, is not.</p><p>Vonn is the downhill icon, always willing to go a little faster than a knee surgeon might recommend. She dated fellow star Tiger Woods, which (naturally) made her an even bigger star. Vonn brings sizzle wherever she goes.</p><p>Shiffrin is the slalom master who is still figuring out how to let loose on the downhill. She is dating fellow skier Mathieu Faivre. Shiffrin, so far, has brought mostly skill than sizzle. This is not a knock. Celebrity is not a reward for good behavior or impeccable character.</p><p>Shiffrin has handled her mercurial career so well, it is easy to forget how difficult it is to excel in more than one Olympic cycle. Swimmer Missy Franklin was on a Shiffrin-esque path after the 2012 London Olympics; four years later, she won one medal, in a relay. Vonn, the finest female skier ever, has only won two Olympic medals due to a combination of injuries and unfortunate timing. Shiffrin may win more than that this week.</p><p>Asked about any comparison to Phelps, Shiffrin said, “You’re crazy.” It was the polite and humble thing to say. But we are not crazy.</p><p>When Phelps first burst onto the Olympic stage in Athens in 2004, he was a well-packaged commodity but rarely said anything interesting. He didn’t have to. All anybody had to say was that Phelps was trying to surpass Mark Spitz’s record of seven gold medals. Every American sports fan knew about Spitz’s record. That was enough for us.</p><p>When Phelps won six golds in Athens, the hype for Beijing in 2008 began immediately; when he won eight golds there, he became a transcendent star. His subsequent personal struggles and recovery were compelling, and eventually Phelps became more comfortable and eloquent in public settings. But by that time, we already cared about him. He was embedded in our cultural consciousness.</p><p>Mikaela Shiffrin may become one of the biggest stars in American sports, but she will not crash through a fence to get there. She was asked Saturday how many events she will enter here; if she goes for five medals and succeeds, it would be one of the great achievements in Winter Olympic history. A lot of us wanted to hear her say she will enter all five. Shiffrin said she will race in the first two events, the slalom and giant slalom, and then see how she feels.</p>
Mikaela Shiffrin Is a (Reluctant) Star in the Making Who Can Make Her Mark in PyeongChang

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea—Mikaela Shiffrin made a crack about the enormous table she would sit behind for her press conference, sat down and tried to break the ice.

“Hi guys, how are you?” she said.

There was no way for a roomful of journalists to answer that question.

“Just wanted to say ‘Hey,’” Shiffrin said.

The Olympics produce many medalists but only a few stars. Winning a medal takes talent, dedication and sometimes a little luck. Becoming a star requires qualities that are harder to define. Usain Bolt is a star. Lindsey Vonn is a star—not just in the skiing world, but beyond. One interesting subplot of these Olympics is whether Shiffrin will join them.

Shiffrin held her pre-Olympics press conference here Saturday. It was scheduled for 30 minutes but cut down to 20 before it began. Shiffrin is poised and gives thoughtful answers to reporters’ questions, though she is a bit self-conscious in a public setting. If she were your sister or friend, you might get nervous watching her.

When her moderator mentioned that the media could come watch Shiffrin’s training runs, she cracked, “Or don’t come. Whatever.” She pointed out that “this is the biggest press conference I’ve done all season.” She said keeps her medals tucked away inside socks. (Be careful with your laundry, Mikaela). She said she does have a few mementos hanging in her home, but quickly added that was only because she had “dead space on my wall.” After relaying what she has done since arriving in Korea more than a week ago—mostly sleep, train and eat—she said, “I’m fairly boring. You guys will find that out throughout these games.” It is hard to build an ad campaign around that.

Shiffrin is an undeniable star on the slopes; her accomplishments before the age of 23 are unprecedented. She may win so many medals this week that she joins Bolt and Michael Phelps as an Olympian everybody recognizes. In the meantime, she is caught in this odd cultural place: she has not yet transcended her sport, but she might.

Vonn seems to have done it, and she seems to have wanted to do it. She is skilled at crafting an image without seeming like she is trying too hard to craft an image. She lets us in on her life and says just enough to keep fans wanting more. She kept her married name, Vonn, after her divorce, well-aware that Lindsey Vonn is not just her name. It is an internationally recognized brand. Her maiden name, Lindsey Kildow, is not.

Vonn is the downhill icon, always willing to go a little faster than a knee surgeon might recommend. She dated fellow star Tiger Woods, which (naturally) made her an even bigger star. Vonn brings sizzle wherever she goes.

Shiffrin is the slalom master who is still figuring out how to let loose on the downhill. She is dating fellow skier Mathieu Faivre. Shiffrin, so far, has brought mostly skill than sizzle. This is not a knock. Celebrity is not a reward for good behavior or impeccable character.

Shiffrin has handled her mercurial career so well, it is easy to forget how difficult it is to excel in more than one Olympic cycle. Swimmer Missy Franklin was on a Shiffrin-esque path after the 2012 London Olympics; four years later, she won one medal, in a relay. Vonn, the finest female skier ever, has only won two Olympic medals due to a combination of injuries and unfortunate timing. Shiffrin may win more than that this week.

Asked about any comparison to Phelps, Shiffrin said, “You’re crazy.” It was the polite and humble thing to say. But we are not crazy.

When Phelps first burst onto the Olympic stage in Athens in 2004, he was a well-packaged commodity but rarely said anything interesting. He didn’t have to. All anybody had to say was that Phelps was trying to surpass Mark Spitz’s record of seven gold medals. Every American sports fan knew about Spitz’s record. That was enough for us.

When Phelps won six golds in Athens, the hype for Beijing in 2008 began immediately; when he won eight golds there, he became a transcendent star. His subsequent personal struggles and recovery were compelling, and eventually Phelps became more comfortable and eloquent in public settings. But by that time, we already cared about him. He was embedded in our cultural consciousness.

Mikaela Shiffrin may become one of the biggest stars in American sports, but she will not crash through a fence to get there. She was asked Saturday how many events she will enter here; if she goes for five medals and succeeds, it would be one of the great achievements in Winter Olympic history. A lot of us wanted to hear her say she will enter all five. Shiffrin said she will race in the first two events, the slalom and giant slalom, and then see how she feels.

Michael Phelps finished his career with 23 Olympic gold medals and skiing champion Mikaela Shiffrin played down any comparisons.
Winter Olympics 2018: Shiffrin dismisses Phelps comparisons
Michael Phelps finished his career with 23 Olympic gold medals and skiing champion Mikaela Shiffrin played down any comparisons.
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
Mikaela Shiffrin shakes off ‘crazy’ Michael Phelps comparisons
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
Mikaela Shiffrin shakes off ‘crazy’ Michael Phelps comparisons
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
Mikaela Shiffrin shakes off ‘crazy’ Michael Phelps comparisons
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
Mikaela Shiffrin shakes off ‘crazy’ Michael Phelps comparisons
The women’s slalom gold medalist from Sochi is already halfway to Lindsey Vonn’s World Cup wins total - despite being eleven years younger. But could the 22-year-old Colorado native have her eye on another Olympic star?
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? &#39;Crazy,&#39; but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? 'Crazy,' but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? 'Crazy,' but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? &#39;Crazy,&#39; but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? 'Crazy,' but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? 'Crazy,' but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? &#39;Crazy,&#39; but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? 'Crazy,' but maybe
Could Mikaela Shiffrin become Michael Phelps of the slopes? 'Crazy,' but maybe
<p>Two years ago, the U.S. nearly swept the women&#39;s artistic gymnastics competition at the Rio Olympics, winning gold in the team all-around and in three out of five individual events. But now, halfway through the four-year cycle to Tokyo 2020, the sport&#39;s governing body, USA Gymnastics, is in free fall, its very existence thrown into doubt by its handling of the cases of sexual assault perpetrated by its former national team doctor, Larry Nassar.</p><p>On Jan. 25, a day after Nassar was sentenced to up to 175 years in jail—in addition to a 60-year sentence handed down on Dec. 6 and another sentence of up to 125 years on Monday—an open letter by Scott Blackmun, CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee, warned that if USA Gymnastics did not quickly implement a series of six reforms, &quot;the USOC will have no choice but to pursue termination of USAG&#39;s NGB [national governing body] status.&quot; Number 1 on that list was a requirement that the entire board of directors resign within a week. One day later all 21 members were on their way out. President and CEO Kerry Perry, who took on her role only on Dec. 1 after a 20-year career in multimedia sports branding, will now oversee an organization stripped of much of its institutional experience.</p><p>One-by-one, major sponsors have ended their support for USAG. In mid-December, Kellogg&#39;s and Procter &#38; Gamble decided not to renew their sponsorships. Hershey&#39;s opted to let its contract run out, while Under Armour announced, also in December, that it would end its association with the organization. On Jan. 23, in a Lansing, Mich., courtroom near the end of a week of victim impact statements—156 in total—that preceded Nassar&#39;s sentencing, AT&#38;T issued a statement saying it was cutting ties with USAG &quot;until it is re-built and we know that the athletes are in a safe environment.&quot;</p><p>Susanne Lyons, an independent member of the USOC board of directors and a former executive with Visa, has been assigned to work as a liaison between USAG and the USOC and with selecting an outside investigator to determine how Nassar&#39;s abuses went unchecked for decades. On Feb. 2, the USOC announced that the law firm of Ropes &#38; Gray would conduct the investigation. A thorough examination of the Nassar case is paramount of course, but with USAG essentially paralyzed and unsponsored, hopefuls for Tokyo 2020 are wondering not only how their sport got here but also where does American gymnastics go now?</p><p>National governing bodies are responsible for the day-to-day running of their sports. For USA Gymnastics, that includes setting rules and policies, organizing clubs, promoting the sport, developing athletes, training coaches and running as many as 4,000 events per year across the country. USAG is also responsible for nominating athletes for international competitions, including the Olympics.</p><p>While fans might pay little attention to gymnastics most of the time, the sport surges into the national consciousness during the Summer Games. On Day 4 of the Rio Games, U.S. swimmers Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky, and the U.S. women&#39;s gymnastics team combined for four gold medals, attracting an NBC audience of 33.6 million.</p><p>Since its founding in 1963, USA Gymnastics has become home to 148,000 athletes who train at more than 3,000 clubs across the country. In the NCAA, there are 62 Division I women&#39;s gymnastics programs, each allowed to issue as many as 12 scholarships, and 15 Division I men&#39;s teams, each with 6.3 scholarships available. Even for the thousands of gymnasts who won&#39;t make the U.S. national team, gymnastics can be a route to college. And the vast majority of those athletes will have risen through the ranks of USA Gymnastics. The USAG slogan: BEGIN HERE, GO ANYWHERE.</p><p>The organization&#39;s to-do list before Tokyo 2020 is long. USA Gymnastics needs to elect a new board, find a new training center (the Karolyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas, site of some of Nassar&#39;s crimes, has been shuttered), attract new sponsors to raise money, select national teams and ensure those teams qualify for competition. And, of course, it must cooperate fully with all Nassar-related investigations and develop policies and procedures to give its athletes confidence that they will be better protected.</p><p>The first chance to qualify for the team competition in Tokyo will be at the 2018 world championships in Doha, Qatar, in October. Finishing on the podium qualifies a team for the 2020 Games. If the selection procedure were to follow that used before Rio 2016, the gymnasts for the team all-around competition would be chosen by a three-person committee following the U.S. Olympic trials in &#39;20. All members of that group will be new. Márta Károlyi, the former coach of the U.S. team, will be absent from that panel for the first time since &#39;00. With her husband, Béla, Márta is maybe most responsible for the current domination of the U.S. team, which has trained at the couple&#39;s ranch in Texas since &#39;01. Their absence leaves a power vacuum at the heart of American gymnastics.</p><p>Olympic medals brought sponsors. In August 2016, during the last Olympics, USA Gymnastics had 18 sponsors listed on its website. Actual contributions from each brand are not detailed in the organization&#39;s tax returns, but the total revenue that year, including more than $2 million from the USOC, was $34.5 million. Expenses added up to $32.4 million. The loss of sponsors will leave a hole in USAG&#39;s revenue, and no major company has indicated an intention to return to supporting USAG. In fact, USAG has deleted the sponsors page from its website. Finding companies that are willing to be linked to USA Gymnastics today may be extremely difficult.</p><p>Also, USA Gymnastics could be liable for significant damages from lawsuits brought by Nassar&#39;s victims, and current or former staff could face criminal charges. The cultural problems at USA Gymnastics run deep.</p><p>Deborah Daniels, a former federal prosecutor, was hired by USAG in November 2016 to review the organization&#39;s policies, and in June 2017 issued a report calling on USAG to better protect young athletes, recommending that &quot;USA Gymnastics needs to undergo a complete cultural change, permeating the entire organization and communicated to the field in all its actions.&quot; In his Jan. 25 open letter, Blackmun echoed the opinion: &quot;USAG culture needs fundamental rebuilding.&quot;</p><p>At Nassar&#39;s sentencing hearing on Jan. 19, two-time Olympian and triple gold medalist Aly Raisman read a statement petitioning judge Rosemarie Aquilina to give Nassar the harshest sentence possible and criticizing how USA Gymnastics and the USOC had failed her and others. She also criticized new USAG president Perry for leaving midway through the hearing, and the USOC for being absent entirely. &quot;For this sport to go on, we need to demand real change, and we need to be willing to fight for it,&quot; Raisman said. &quot;It&#39;s clear now that if we leave it up to these organizations, history is likely to repeat itself.&quot;</p><p>There have been calls for USAG to be decertified, but there is no comparable organization that could easily step in as a national governing body. Without USA Gymnastics, the USOC might struggle to develop young talent. In a statement addressed to Team USA on Jan. 24, Blackmun explained that the reason for not decertifying USA Gymnastics is that doing so might do more damage than trying to rebuild the organization. &quot;USA Gymnastics includes clubs and athletes who had no hand in this and who need to be supported,&quot; he wrote. &quot;We believe [decertifying] would hurt more than help the athletes and their sport. But we will pursue decertification if USA Gymnastics does not fully embrace the necessary changes.&quot;</p><p>USA Gymnastics is set to have an interim board of directors in place before the end of February. For an organization with hopes of defending its Olympic title in Tokyo, choosing at least one prominent former gymnast would make sense. The most decorated athlete on the previous board was Ivana Hong, who had been elected in December. Hong won team gold at the world championships in Stuttgart in 2007. For an organization that is struggling to overcome the worst sexual abuse scandal in sports history, seeking out the voices of Nassar&#39;s victims is also essential. Though neither has put her name forward for consideration, Rachael Denhollander, the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar, and Raisman would seem to be ideal candidates.</p><p>From 1936 to &#39;76, the United States picked up just one medal (bronze, London &#39;48) in team gymnastics competition at the Olympics. But then the Károlyis defected from Romania during an &#39;81 gymnastics tour of the U.S. Under their coaching guidance, Mary Lou Retton went on to win gold in the individual all-around in &#39;84, and her scores helped to lift the team to a silver medal. Over the next eight Olympiads, the paternal (and maternal) Károlyis played pivotal roles in the success of the U.S. team. In that period Team USA won a total of 39 team and individual medals, a dozen of them gold.</p><p>In the wake of the Károlyis&#39; departure and the complete turnover at the top, USA Gymnastics must begin again. Will we return to the days of being sixth-place also-rans? Or can we reach a point at which team success and athlete rights are no longer mutually exclusive?</p><p>Begin here, go where?</p>
After the Larry Nassar Scandal, Where Does USA Gymnastics Go From Here?

Two years ago, the U.S. nearly swept the women's artistic gymnastics competition at the Rio Olympics, winning gold in the team all-around and in three out of five individual events. But now, halfway through the four-year cycle to Tokyo 2020, the sport's governing body, USA Gymnastics, is in free fall, its very existence thrown into doubt by its handling of the cases of sexual assault perpetrated by its former national team doctor, Larry Nassar.

On Jan. 25, a day after Nassar was sentenced to up to 175 years in jail—in addition to a 60-year sentence handed down on Dec. 6 and another sentence of up to 125 years on Monday—an open letter by Scott Blackmun, CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee, warned that if USA Gymnastics did not quickly implement a series of six reforms, "the USOC will have no choice but to pursue termination of USAG's NGB [national governing body] status." Number 1 on that list was a requirement that the entire board of directors resign within a week. One day later all 21 members were on their way out. President and CEO Kerry Perry, who took on her role only on Dec. 1 after a 20-year career in multimedia sports branding, will now oversee an organization stripped of much of its institutional experience.

One-by-one, major sponsors have ended their support for USAG. In mid-December, Kellogg's and Procter & Gamble decided not to renew their sponsorships. Hershey's opted to let its contract run out, while Under Armour announced, also in December, that it would end its association with the organization. On Jan. 23, in a Lansing, Mich., courtroom near the end of a week of victim impact statements—156 in total—that preceded Nassar's sentencing, AT&T issued a statement saying it was cutting ties with USAG "until it is re-built and we know that the athletes are in a safe environment."

Susanne Lyons, an independent member of the USOC board of directors and a former executive with Visa, has been assigned to work as a liaison between USAG and the USOC and with selecting an outside investigator to determine how Nassar's abuses went unchecked for decades. On Feb. 2, the USOC announced that the law firm of Ropes & Gray would conduct the investigation. A thorough examination of the Nassar case is paramount of course, but with USAG essentially paralyzed and unsponsored, hopefuls for Tokyo 2020 are wondering not only how their sport got here but also where does American gymnastics go now?

National governing bodies are responsible for the day-to-day running of their sports. For USA Gymnastics, that includes setting rules and policies, organizing clubs, promoting the sport, developing athletes, training coaches and running as many as 4,000 events per year across the country. USAG is also responsible for nominating athletes for international competitions, including the Olympics.

While fans might pay little attention to gymnastics most of the time, the sport surges into the national consciousness during the Summer Games. On Day 4 of the Rio Games, U.S. swimmers Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky, and the U.S. women's gymnastics team combined for four gold medals, attracting an NBC audience of 33.6 million.

Since its founding in 1963, USA Gymnastics has become home to 148,000 athletes who train at more than 3,000 clubs across the country. In the NCAA, there are 62 Division I women's gymnastics programs, each allowed to issue as many as 12 scholarships, and 15 Division I men's teams, each with 6.3 scholarships available. Even for the thousands of gymnasts who won't make the U.S. national team, gymnastics can be a route to college. And the vast majority of those athletes will have risen through the ranks of USA Gymnastics. The USAG slogan: BEGIN HERE, GO ANYWHERE.

The organization's to-do list before Tokyo 2020 is long. USA Gymnastics needs to elect a new board, find a new training center (the Karolyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas, site of some of Nassar's crimes, has been shuttered), attract new sponsors to raise money, select national teams and ensure those teams qualify for competition. And, of course, it must cooperate fully with all Nassar-related investigations and develop policies and procedures to give its athletes confidence that they will be better protected.

The first chance to qualify for the team competition in Tokyo will be at the 2018 world championships in Doha, Qatar, in October. Finishing on the podium qualifies a team for the 2020 Games. If the selection procedure were to follow that used before Rio 2016, the gymnasts for the team all-around competition would be chosen by a three-person committee following the U.S. Olympic trials in '20. All members of that group will be new. Márta Károlyi, the former coach of the U.S. team, will be absent from that panel for the first time since '00. With her husband, Béla, Márta is maybe most responsible for the current domination of the U.S. team, which has trained at the couple's ranch in Texas since '01. Their absence leaves a power vacuum at the heart of American gymnastics.

Olympic medals brought sponsors. In August 2016, during the last Olympics, USA Gymnastics had 18 sponsors listed on its website. Actual contributions from each brand are not detailed in the organization's tax returns, but the total revenue that year, including more than $2 million from the USOC, was $34.5 million. Expenses added up to $32.4 million. The loss of sponsors will leave a hole in USAG's revenue, and no major company has indicated an intention to return to supporting USAG. In fact, USAG has deleted the sponsors page from its website. Finding companies that are willing to be linked to USA Gymnastics today may be extremely difficult.

Also, USA Gymnastics could be liable for significant damages from lawsuits brought by Nassar's victims, and current or former staff could face criminal charges. The cultural problems at USA Gymnastics run deep.

Deborah Daniels, a former federal prosecutor, was hired by USAG in November 2016 to review the organization's policies, and in June 2017 issued a report calling on USAG to better protect young athletes, recommending that "USA Gymnastics needs to undergo a complete cultural change, permeating the entire organization and communicated to the field in all its actions." In his Jan. 25 open letter, Blackmun echoed the opinion: "USAG culture needs fundamental rebuilding."

At Nassar's sentencing hearing on Jan. 19, two-time Olympian and triple gold medalist Aly Raisman read a statement petitioning judge Rosemarie Aquilina to give Nassar the harshest sentence possible and criticizing how USA Gymnastics and the USOC had failed her and others. She also criticized new USAG president Perry for leaving midway through the hearing, and the USOC for being absent entirely. "For this sport to go on, we need to demand real change, and we need to be willing to fight for it," Raisman said. "It's clear now that if we leave it up to these organizations, history is likely to repeat itself."

There have been calls for USAG to be decertified, but there is no comparable organization that could easily step in as a national governing body. Without USA Gymnastics, the USOC might struggle to develop young talent. In a statement addressed to Team USA on Jan. 24, Blackmun explained that the reason for not decertifying USA Gymnastics is that doing so might do more damage than trying to rebuild the organization. "USA Gymnastics includes clubs and athletes who had no hand in this and who need to be supported," he wrote. "We believe [decertifying] would hurt more than help the athletes and their sport. But we will pursue decertification if USA Gymnastics does not fully embrace the necessary changes."

USA Gymnastics is set to have an interim board of directors in place before the end of February. For an organization with hopes of defending its Olympic title in Tokyo, choosing at least one prominent former gymnast would make sense. The most decorated athlete on the previous board was Ivana Hong, who had been elected in December. Hong won team gold at the world championships in Stuttgart in 2007. For an organization that is struggling to overcome the worst sexual abuse scandal in sports history, seeking out the voices of Nassar's victims is also essential. Though neither has put her name forward for consideration, Rachael Denhollander, the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar, and Raisman would seem to be ideal candidates.

From 1936 to '76, the United States picked up just one medal (bronze, London '48) in team gymnastics competition at the Olympics. But then the Károlyis defected from Romania during an '81 gymnastics tour of the U.S. Under their coaching guidance, Mary Lou Retton went on to win gold in the individual all-around in '84, and her scores helped to lift the team to a silver medal. Over the next eight Olympiads, the paternal (and maternal) Károlyis played pivotal roles in the success of the U.S. team. In that period Team USA won a total of 39 team and individual medals, a dozen of them gold.

In the wake of the Károlyis' departure and the complete turnover at the top, USA Gymnastics must begin again. Will we return to the days of being sixth-place also-rans? Or can we reach a point at which team success and athlete rights are no longer mutually exclusive?

Begin here, go where?

<p>Two years ago, the U.S. nearly swept the women&#39;s artistic gymnastics competition at the Rio Olympics, winning gold in the team all-around and in three out of five individual events. But now, halfway through the four-year cycle to Tokyo 2020, the sport&#39;s governing body, USA Gymnastics, is in free fall, its very existence thrown into doubt by its handling of the cases of sexual assault perpetrated by its former national team doctor, Larry Nassar.</p><p>On Jan. 25, a day after Nassar was sentenced to up to 175 years in jail—in addition to a 60-year sentence handed down on Dec. 6 and another sentence of up to 125 years on Monday—an open letter by Scott Blackmun, CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee, warned that if USA Gymnastics did not quickly implement a series of six reforms, &quot;the USOC will have no choice but to pursue termination of USAG&#39;s NGB [national governing body] status.&quot; Number 1 on that list was a requirement that the entire board of directors resign within a week. One day later all 21 members were on their way out. President and CEO Kerry Perry, who took on her role only on Dec. 1 after a 20-year career in multimedia sports branding, will now oversee an organization stripped of much of its institutional experience.</p><p>One-by-one, major sponsors have ended their support for USAG. In mid-December, Kellogg&#39;s and Procter &#38; Gamble decided not to renew their sponsorships. Hershey&#39;s opted to let its contract run out, while Under Armour announced, also in December, that it would end its association with the organization. On Jan. 23, in a Lansing, Mich., courtroom near the end of a week of victim impact statements—156 in total—that preceded Nassar&#39;s sentencing, AT&#38;T issued a statement saying it was cutting ties with USAG &quot;until it is re-built and we know that the athletes are in a safe environment.&quot;</p><p>Susanne Lyons, an independent member of the USOC board of directors and a former executive with Visa, has been assigned to work as a liaison between USAG and the USOC and with selecting an outside investigator to determine how Nassar&#39;s abuses went unchecked for decades. On Feb. 2, the USOC announced that the law firm of Ropes &#38; Gray would conduct the investigation. A thorough examination of the Nassar case is paramount of course, but with USAG essentially paralyzed and unsponsored, hopefuls for Tokyo 2020 are wondering not only how their sport got here but also where does American gymnastics go now?</p><p>National governing bodies are responsible for the day-to-day running of their sports. For USA Gymnastics, that includes setting rules and policies, organizing clubs, promoting the sport, developing athletes, training coaches and running as many as 4,000 events per year across the country. USAG is also responsible for nominating athletes for international competitions, including the Olympics.</p><p>While fans might pay little attention to gymnastics most of the time, the sport surges into the national consciousness during the Summer Games. On Day 4 of the Rio Games, U.S. swimmers Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky, and the U.S. women&#39;s gymnastics team combined for four gold medals, attracting an NBC audience of 33.6 million.</p><p>Since its founding in 1963, USA Gymnastics has become home to 148,000 athletes who train at more than 3,000 clubs across the country. In the NCAA, there are 62 Division I women&#39;s gymnastics programs, each allowed to issue as many as 12 scholarships, and 15 Division I men&#39;s teams, each with 6.3 scholarships available. Even for the thousands of gymnasts who won&#39;t make the U.S. national team, gymnastics can be a route to college. And the vast majority of those athletes will have risen through the ranks of USA Gymnastics. The USAG slogan: BEGIN HERE, GO ANYWHERE.</p><p>The organization&#39;s to-do list before Tokyo 2020 is long. USA Gymnastics needs to elect a new board, find a new training center (the Karolyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas, site of some of Nassar&#39;s crimes, has been shuttered), attract new sponsors to raise money, select national teams and ensure those teams qualify for competition. And, of course, it must cooperate fully with all Nassar-related investigations and develop policies and procedures to give its athletes confidence that they will be better protected.</p><p>The first chance to qualify for the team competition in Tokyo will be at the 2018 world championships in Doha, Qatar, in October. Finishing on the podium qualifies a team for the 2020 Games. If the selection procedure were to follow that used before Rio 2016, the gymnasts for the team all-around competition would be chosen by a three-person committee following the U.S. Olympic trials in &#39;20. All members of that group will be new. Márta Károlyi, the former coach of the U.S. team, will be absent from that panel for the first time since &#39;00. With her husband, Béla, Márta is maybe most responsible for the current domination of the U.S. team, which has trained at the couple&#39;s ranch in Texas since &#39;01. Their absence leaves a power vacuum at the heart of American gymnastics.</p><p>Olympic medals brought sponsors. In August 2016, during the last Olympics, USA Gymnastics had 18 sponsors listed on its website. Actual contributions from each brand are not detailed in the organization&#39;s tax returns, but the total revenue that year, including more than $2 million from the USOC, was $34.5 million. Expenses added up to $32.4 million. The loss of sponsors will leave a hole in USAG&#39;s revenue, and no major company has indicated an intention to return to supporting USAG. In fact, USAG has deleted the sponsors page from its website. Finding companies that are willing to be linked to USA Gymnastics today may be extremely difficult.</p><p>Also, USA Gymnastics could be liable for significant damages from lawsuits brought by Nassar&#39;s victims, and current or former staff could face criminal charges. The cultural problems at USA Gymnastics run deep.</p><p>Deborah Daniels, a former federal prosecutor, was hired by USAG in November 2016 to review the organization&#39;s policies, and in June 2017 issued a report calling on USAG to better protect young athletes, recommending that &quot;USA Gymnastics needs to undergo a complete cultural change, permeating the entire organization and communicated to the field in all its actions.&quot; In his Jan. 25 open letter, Blackmun echoed the opinion: &quot;USAG culture needs fundamental rebuilding.&quot;</p><p>At Nassar&#39;s sentencing hearing on Jan. 19, two-time Olympian and triple gold medalist Aly Raisman read a statement petitioning judge Rosemarie Aquilina to give Nassar the harshest sentence possible and criticizing how USA Gymnastics and the USOC had failed her and others. She also criticized new USAG president Perry for leaving midway through the hearing, and the USOC for being absent entirely. &quot;For this sport to go on, we need to demand real change, and we need to be willing to fight for it,&quot; Raisman said. &quot;It&#39;s clear now that if we leave it up to these organizations, history is likely to repeat itself.&quot;</p><p>There have been calls for USAG to be decertified, but there is no comparable organization that could easily step in as a national governing body. Without USA Gymnastics, the USOC might struggle to develop young talent. In a statement addressed to Team USA on Jan. 24, Blackmun explained that the reason for not decertifying USA Gymnastics is that doing so might do more damage than trying to rebuild the organization. &quot;USA Gymnastics includes clubs and athletes who had no hand in this and who need to be supported,&quot; he wrote. &quot;We believe [decertifying] would hurt more than help the athletes and their sport. But we will pursue decertification if USA Gymnastics does not fully embrace the necessary changes.&quot;</p><p>USA Gymnastics is set to have an interim board of directors in place before the end of February. For an organization with hopes of defending its Olympic title in Tokyo, choosing at least one prominent former gymnast would make sense. The most decorated athlete on the previous board was Ivana Hong, who had been elected in December. Hong won team gold at the world championships in Stuttgart in 2007. For an organization that is struggling to overcome the worst sexual abuse scandal in sports history, seeking out the voices of Nassar&#39;s victims is also essential. Though neither has put her name forward for consideration, Rachael Denhollander, the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar, and Raisman would seem to be ideal candidates.</p><p>From 1936 to &#39;76, the United States picked up just one medal (bronze, London &#39;48) in team gymnastics competition at the Olympics. But then the Károlyis defected from Romania during an &#39;81 gymnastics tour of the U.S. Under their coaching guidance, Mary Lou Retton went on to win gold in the individual all-around in &#39;84, and her scores helped to lift the team to a silver medal. Over the next eight Olympiads, the paternal (and maternal) Károlyis played pivotal roles in the success of the U.S. team. In that period Team USA won a total of 39 team and individual medals, a dozen of them gold.</p><p>In the wake of the Károlyis&#39; departure and the complete turnover at the top, USA Gymnastics must begin again. Will we return to the days of being sixth-place also-rans? Or can we reach a point at which team success and athlete rights are no longer mutually exclusive?</p><p>Begin here, go where?</p>
After the Larry Nassar Scandal, Where Does USA Gymnastics Go From Here?

Two years ago, the U.S. nearly swept the women's artistic gymnastics competition at the Rio Olympics, winning gold in the team all-around and in three out of five individual events. But now, halfway through the four-year cycle to Tokyo 2020, the sport's governing body, USA Gymnastics, is in free fall, its very existence thrown into doubt by its handling of the cases of sexual assault perpetrated by its former national team doctor, Larry Nassar.

On Jan. 25, a day after Nassar was sentenced to up to 175 years in jail—in addition to a 60-year sentence handed down on Dec. 6 and another sentence of up to 125 years on Monday—an open letter by Scott Blackmun, CEO of the U.S. Olympic Committee, warned that if USA Gymnastics did not quickly implement a series of six reforms, "the USOC will have no choice but to pursue termination of USAG's NGB [national governing body] status." Number 1 on that list was a requirement that the entire board of directors resign within a week. One day later all 21 members were on their way out. President and CEO Kerry Perry, who took on her role only on Dec. 1 after a 20-year career in multimedia sports branding, will now oversee an organization stripped of much of its institutional experience.

One-by-one, major sponsors have ended their support for USAG. In mid-December, Kellogg's and Procter & Gamble decided not to renew their sponsorships. Hershey's opted to let its contract run out, while Under Armour announced, also in December, that it would end its association with the organization. On Jan. 23, in a Lansing, Mich., courtroom near the end of a week of victim impact statements—156 in total—that preceded Nassar's sentencing, AT&T issued a statement saying it was cutting ties with USAG "until it is re-built and we know that the athletes are in a safe environment."

Susanne Lyons, an independent member of the USOC board of directors and a former executive with Visa, has been assigned to work as a liaison between USAG and the USOC and with selecting an outside investigator to determine how Nassar's abuses went unchecked for decades. On Feb. 2, the USOC announced that the law firm of Ropes & Gray would conduct the investigation. A thorough examination of the Nassar case is paramount of course, but with USAG essentially paralyzed and unsponsored, hopefuls for Tokyo 2020 are wondering not only how their sport got here but also where does American gymnastics go now?

National governing bodies are responsible for the day-to-day running of their sports. For USA Gymnastics, that includes setting rules and policies, organizing clubs, promoting the sport, developing athletes, training coaches and running as many as 4,000 events per year across the country. USAG is also responsible for nominating athletes for international competitions, including the Olympics.

While fans might pay little attention to gymnastics most of the time, the sport surges into the national consciousness during the Summer Games. On Day 4 of the Rio Games, U.S. swimmers Michael Phelps and Katie Ledecky, and the U.S. women's gymnastics team combined for four gold medals, attracting an NBC audience of 33.6 million.

Since its founding in 1963, USA Gymnastics has become home to 148,000 athletes who train at more than 3,000 clubs across the country. In the NCAA, there are 62 Division I women's gymnastics programs, each allowed to issue as many as 12 scholarships, and 15 Division I men's teams, each with 6.3 scholarships available. Even for the thousands of gymnasts who won't make the U.S. national team, gymnastics can be a route to college. And the vast majority of those athletes will have risen through the ranks of USA Gymnastics. The USAG slogan: BEGIN HERE, GO ANYWHERE.

The organization's to-do list before Tokyo 2020 is long. USA Gymnastics needs to elect a new board, find a new training center (the Karolyi Ranch in Huntsville, Texas, site of some of Nassar's crimes, has been shuttered), attract new sponsors to raise money, select national teams and ensure those teams qualify for competition. And, of course, it must cooperate fully with all Nassar-related investigations and develop policies and procedures to give its athletes confidence that they will be better protected.

The first chance to qualify for the team competition in Tokyo will be at the 2018 world championships in Doha, Qatar, in October. Finishing on the podium qualifies a team for the 2020 Games. If the selection procedure were to follow that used before Rio 2016, the gymnasts for the team all-around competition would be chosen by a three-person committee following the U.S. Olympic trials in '20. All members of that group will be new. Márta Károlyi, the former coach of the U.S. team, will be absent from that panel for the first time since '00. With her husband, Béla, Márta is maybe most responsible for the current domination of the U.S. team, which has trained at the couple's ranch in Texas since '01. Their absence leaves a power vacuum at the heart of American gymnastics.

Olympic medals brought sponsors. In August 2016, during the last Olympics, USA Gymnastics had 18 sponsors listed on its website. Actual contributions from each brand are not detailed in the organization's tax returns, but the total revenue that year, including more than $2 million from the USOC, was $34.5 million. Expenses added up to $32.4 million. The loss of sponsors will leave a hole in USAG's revenue, and no major company has indicated an intention to return to supporting USAG. In fact, USAG has deleted the sponsors page from its website. Finding companies that are willing to be linked to USA Gymnastics today may be extremely difficult.

Also, USA Gymnastics could be liable for significant damages from lawsuits brought by Nassar's victims, and current or former staff could face criminal charges. The cultural problems at USA Gymnastics run deep.

Deborah Daniels, a former federal prosecutor, was hired by USAG in November 2016 to review the organization's policies, and in June 2017 issued a report calling on USAG to better protect young athletes, recommending that "USA Gymnastics needs to undergo a complete cultural change, permeating the entire organization and communicated to the field in all its actions." In his Jan. 25 open letter, Blackmun echoed the opinion: "USAG culture needs fundamental rebuilding."

At Nassar's sentencing hearing on Jan. 19, two-time Olympian and triple gold medalist Aly Raisman read a statement petitioning judge Rosemarie Aquilina to give Nassar the harshest sentence possible and criticizing how USA Gymnastics and the USOC had failed her and others. She also criticized new USAG president Perry for leaving midway through the hearing, and the USOC for being absent entirely. "For this sport to go on, we need to demand real change, and we need to be willing to fight for it," Raisman said. "It's clear now that if we leave it up to these organizations, history is likely to repeat itself."

There have been calls for USAG to be decertified, but there is no comparable organization that could easily step in as a national governing body. Without USA Gymnastics, the USOC might struggle to develop young talent. In a statement addressed to Team USA on Jan. 24, Blackmun explained that the reason for not decertifying USA Gymnastics is that doing so might do more damage than trying to rebuild the organization. "USA Gymnastics includes clubs and athletes who had no hand in this and who need to be supported," he wrote. "We believe [decertifying] would hurt more than help the athletes and their sport. But we will pursue decertification if USA Gymnastics does not fully embrace the necessary changes."

USA Gymnastics is set to have an interim board of directors in place before the end of February. For an organization with hopes of defending its Olympic title in Tokyo, choosing at least one prominent former gymnast would make sense. The most decorated athlete on the previous board was Ivana Hong, who had been elected in December. Hong won team gold at the world championships in Stuttgart in 2007. For an organization that is struggling to overcome the worst sexual abuse scandal in sports history, seeking out the voices of Nassar's victims is also essential. Though neither has put her name forward for consideration, Rachael Denhollander, the first woman to publicly accuse Nassar, and Raisman would seem to be ideal candidates.

From 1936 to '76, the United States picked up just one medal (bronze, London '48) in team gymnastics competition at the Olympics. But then the Károlyis defected from Romania during an '81 gymnastics tour of the U.S. Under their coaching guidance, Mary Lou Retton went on to win gold in the individual all-around in '84, and her scores helped to lift the team to a silver medal. Over the next eight Olympiads, the paternal (and maternal) Károlyis played pivotal roles in the success of the U.S. team. In that period Team USA won a total of 39 team and individual medals, a dozen of them gold.

In the wake of the Károlyis' departure and the complete turnover at the top, USA Gymnastics must begin again. Will we return to the days of being sixth-place also-rans? Or can we reach a point at which team success and athlete rights are no longer mutually exclusive?

Begin here, go where?

<p>This will be the sixth straight Olympics Bode Miller has attended, only this time the six-time medalist will be in the commentary booth for NBC. </p><p>He officially retired in October and now <a href="https://aztechmountain.com/pages/teaming-up-with-bode-miller" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:works as the chief innovation officer" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">works as the chief innovation officer</a> for Aztech Mountain, a Colorado-based skiwear company. SI.com spoke with Miller about his new gig as an announcer, his thoughts on the upcoming Olympics, his Super Bowl pick and much more. </p><p>(<em>The following interview was lightly edited and condensed for clarity.</em>)</p><p><strong>Dan Gartland</strong>: <em>How helpful will your experience doing commentary for World Cup races be for you as you prepare to cover the Olympics with NBC?</em></p><p><strong>Bode Miller</strong>: It’s critical, actually. It’s not a terribly tough thing for me to figure out how to do but there’s still a certain cadence to it. There’s few things that it helps to be used to, like with the timing of things or when they talk in your ear while you’re trying to talk. Those are all things that take a little getting used to, so it definitely helps.</p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em><a href="https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/olympics/2017/12/13/bode-miller-says-sochi-olympic-venue-hurt-his-medal-chances-2014/948718001/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:You were critical of the venue in Sochi" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">You were critical of the venue in Sochi</a>. Do you think there will be anything about Korea and either the snow or the terrain there that will provide a challenge for the skiers at the Olympics?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: That’s really the crux of the whole thing. Skiing is full of that. There’s always something that’s problematic for one skier or another, or all of them, or one particular brand of ski. The number of variables there are in that sport, it’s always that. There’s no easy way to talk about it beforehand but that definitely will be a factor. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>How do skiers try to get a scouting report of the venue?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: A lot of that has to do with the specific weather patterns that come through, how the course track is—and that varies year to year. There’s a lot of variables. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>Obviously a lot of the focus this Olympics will be on Lindsey Vonn and Mikaela Shiffrin, two fantastic Americans. Are there any other potential breakout stars you’re looking forward to covering?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: It’s a strange sport because the favorites don’t generally do that well. If Michael Phelps came out of an Olympics with no medals, that would be shocking, whereas in this sport seeing a favorite come out with no medals is not shocking at all. It happens every single Olympics. Aksel Svindal, who was massively favored going into the last Olympics—he was skiing great, had just won several races going in there, had just won Kitzbühel right before that—he came out with no medals.</p><p>So while you can’t speak highly enough of Mikaela and Lindsey, it’s just no guarantee. In swimming there’s no variables. You hop in the pool, you do your thing, you might miss a start by a little bit but if you’re good enough you’ll overcome that. In this, there are just so many variables that are outside the control of the athlete that it really is sometimes absolutely impossible for even the very best to make up enough to cover that spread. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>This will be the first Olympics since 1994 that you won’t be competing in. You’ve missed World Cup seasons in the past but do you anticipate covering the Olympics to feel any different than the World Cup?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: I don’t know that it’ll be that different. The World Cup I would expect to be the bigger anomaly. If you think about it from my perspective, since I was born in 1977 there have been five Olympics that I didn’t compete in and five Olympics that I did compete in. The bigger difference is that I raced 438 World Cup races. To then commentate World Cups and not be a part of it, that was a much greater pool of races for me. The Olympics is still only five. But I also think the spectacle of the Olympics is so much more prevalent and much more culturally relevant for Americans. So to be able to experience that the way that the rest of country and friends and family have for the last five Olympics, I think that will be way more fun for me. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>I read that you’re selling one of your race suits from Sochi on eBay. What went into that decision?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: Having four storage units full of old stuff that I’ll never use or touch again [laughs]. That’s actually probably not true. I probably have more like six storage units. Leading up to the Olympics I want to get the excitement up, I like to get people engaged. That’s really the majority of why I’m doing the commentary anyway. It’s not really cash intensive. It’s just that I want to help enhance the experience for everyone else if I can. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>You officially retired in October but you hadn’t raced since crashing in 2015 and severing a hamstring tendon. I know the basketball player Shaun Livingston has said he never watched the video of his gruesome knee injury. Have you gone back and watched the video of the crash that essentially ended your career?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: Yeah, it wasn’t the injury that ended my career. (Editor’s note: <a href="https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/olympics/2016/12/29/bode-miller-olympics-return/95981412/" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Miller also had a legal dispute with a ski manufacturer" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Miller also had a legal dispute with a ski manufacturer</a> that prevented him from racing on other skis for two years.) It’s not hard for me to watch crashes—I’ve watched so many of them. For a basketball player, they don’t get injured that often and when they do it’s not usually a visual injury. In ski racing, we crash all the time. We watch crashes because you have to figure out why you crashed. You really want to figure out what happened and not make that mistake again. </p><p>With the crash, I honestly could have continued racing that World Cup series even though I cut my hamstring. The cut was nasty but it’s the same as any other cut. If I was a hockey player and I was tougher I probably would have just sewed it up and gone right on skiing. But it was a small tendon that you can do without and in the end it’s gone anyway. Mine blew back out. It wasn’t really that serious of an injury. It looks gross and the crash was hard but it certainly wasn’t harder than a lot of other crashes I’ve had. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>You’re from New England (New Hampshire). Are you a football fan at all?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>:I am. This is the first year that I’m getting to go to the Super Bowl, so I’m excited. I watched the Super Bowls all the time from Europe but it’s a different experience over there and I’m glad I get to see a Super Bowl where Tom Brady will still be competing because he’s one of my favorite football players. </p><p><strong>DG</strong>: <em>Do you have a pick?</em></p><p><strong>BM</strong>: The Patriots. I think they’ll hold the Eagles pretty well. I think it’ll be 34–18, Patriots. </p>
Bode Miller Q&A: His Thoughts on the 2018 Olympics, His New Job as a Broadcaster and More

This will be the sixth straight Olympics Bode Miller has attended, only this time the six-time medalist will be in the commentary booth for NBC.

He officially retired in October and now works as the chief innovation officer for Aztech Mountain, a Colorado-based skiwear company. SI.com spoke with Miller about his new gig as an announcer, his thoughts on the upcoming Olympics, his Super Bowl pick and much more.

(The following interview was lightly edited and condensed for clarity.)

Dan Gartland: How helpful will your experience doing commentary for World Cup races be for you as you prepare to cover the Olympics with NBC?

Bode Miller: It’s critical, actually. It’s not a terribly tough thing for me to figure out how to do but there’s still a certain cadence to it. There’s few things that it helps to be used to, like with the timing of things or when they talk in your ear while you’re trying to talk. Those are all things that take a little getting used to, so it definitely helps.

DG: You were critical of the venue in Sochi. Do you think there will be anything about Korea and either the snow or the terrain there that will provide a challenge for the skiers at the Olympics?

BM: That’s really the crux of the whole thing. Skiing is full of that. There’s always something that’s problematic for one skier or another, or all of them, or one particular brand of ski. The number of variables there are in that sport, it’s always that. There’s no easy way to talk about it beforehand but that definitely will be a factor.

DG: How do skiers try to get a scouting report of the venue?

BM: A lot of that has to do with the specific weather patterns that come through, how the course track is—and that varies year to year. There’s a lot of variables.

DG: Obviously a lot of the focus this Olympics will be on Lindsey Vonn and Mikaela Shiffrin, two fantastic Americans. Are there any other potential breakout stars you’re looking forward to covering?

BM: It’s a strange sport because the favorites don’t generally do that well. If Michael Phelps came out of an Olympics with no medals, that would be shocking, whereas in this sport seeing a favorite come out with no medals is not shocking at all. It happens every single Olympics. Aksel Svindal, who was massively favored going into the last Olympics—he was skiing great, had just won several races going in there, had just won Kitzbühel right before that—he came out with no medals.

So while you can’t speak highly enough of Mikaela and Lindsey, it’s just no guarantee. In swimming there’s no variables. You hop in the pool, you do your thing, you might miss a start by a little bit but if you’re good enough you’ll overcome that. In this, there are just so many variables that are outside the control of the athlete that it really is sometimes absolutely impossible for even the very best to make up enough to cover that spread.

DG: This will be the first Olympics since 1994 that you won’t be competing in. You’ve missed World Cup seasons in the past but do you anticipate covering the Olympics to feel any different than the World Cup?

BM: I don’t know that it’ll be that different. The World Cup I would expect to be the bigger anomaly. If you think about it from my perspective, since I was born in 1977 there have been five Olympics that I didn’t compete in and five Olympics that I did compete in. The bigger difference is that I raced 438 World Cup races. To then commentate World Cups and not be a part of it, that was a much greater pool of races for me. The Olympics is still only five. But I also think the spectacle of the Olympics is so much more prevalent and much more culturally relevant for Americans. So to be able to experience that the way that the rest of country and friends and family have for the last five Olympics, I think that will be way more fun for me.

DG: I read that you’re selling one of your race suits from Sochi on eBay. What went into that decision?

BM: Having four storage units full of old stuff that I’ll never use or touch again [laughs]. That’s actually probably not true. I probably have more like six storage units. Leading up to the Olympics I want to get the excitement up, I like to get people engaged. That’s really the majority of why I’m doing the commentary anyway. It’s not really cash intensive. It’s just that I want to help enhance the experience for everyone else if I can.

DG: You officially retired in October but you hadn’t raced since crashing in 2015 and severing a hamstring tendon. I know the basketball player Shaun Livingston has said he never watched the video of his gruesome knee injury. Have you gone back and watched the video of the crash that essentially ended your career?

BM: Yeah, it wasn’t the injury that ended my career. (Editor’s note: Miller also had a legal dispute with a ski manufacturer that prevented him from racing on other skis for two years.) It’s not hard for me to watch crashes—I’ve watched so many of them. For a basketball player, they don’t get injured that often and when they do it’s not usually a visual injury. In ski racing, we crash all the time. We watch crashes because you have to figure out why you crashed. You really want to figure out what happened and not make that mistake again.

With the crash, I honestly could have continued racing that World Cup series even though I cut my hamstring. The cut was nasty but it’s the same as any other cut. If I was a hockey player and I was tougher I probably would have just sewed it up and gone right on skiing. But it was a small tendon that you can do without and in the end it’s gone anyway. Mine blew back out. It wasn’t really that serious of an injury. It looks gross and the crash was hard but it certainly wasn’t harder than a lot of other crashes I’ve had.

DG: You’re from New England (New Hampshire). Are you a football fan at all?

BM:I am. This is the first year that I’m getting to go to the Super Bowl, so I’m excited. I watched the Super Bowls all the time from Europe but it’s a different experience over there and I’m glad I get to see a Super Bowl where Tom Brady will still be competing because he’s one of my favorite football players.

DG: Do you have a pick?

BM: The Patriots. I think they’ll hold the Eagles pretty well. I think it’ll be 34–18, Patriots.

<p>With the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea fast approaching, here’s everything you need to know about speed skating.</p><p>The Olympics begin Thursday, Feb. 8 and conclude Sunday, Feb. 25. Speed skating will be contested from Feb. 10 to 24 with medals on the line for 14 different events. At the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, the Netherlands won eight out of 12 available gold medals but did manage to claim a medal in every event.</p><p>Check out the full speed skating schedule <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2017/10/20/2018-winter-olympics-speed-skating-schedule" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:here" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">here</a>.</p><p>In December, Sports Illustrated published a <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2017/12/20/2018-winter-olympics-rookies-guide-speed-skating-pyeongchang" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Rookie&#39;s Guide to Speed Skating" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Rookie&#39;s Guide to Speed Skating</a> with information about the background, selection process, rules and format of the sport. I challenge you to read that guide and not want to watch speed skating at this year&#39;s Olympics. The competition is going to be a lot of fun.</p><p>In the January 29-February 5 Olympic Preview issue of <em>Sports Illustrated</em>’s magazine, our expert Brian Cazeneuve gave his medal predictions. Here are his picks for speed skating:</p><h3>Speedskating</h3><h3><b>MEN</b></h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Ronald Mulder, Netherlands</p><p>Silver: Kai Verbij, Netherlands</p><p>Bronze: Håvard Holmefjord Lorentzen, Norway</p><p><em>Mulder’s twin, Michel, won the 500-meter long-track event in Sochi and came in third at 1,000 meters.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Kjeld Nuis, Netherlands</p><p>Silver: Kai Verbij, Netherlands</p><p>Bronze: Vincent De Haître, Canada</p><p><em>De Haître was Canada’s 1,000-meter track cycling champ in 2013.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Denis Yuskov, Russia</p><p>Silver: Koen Verweij, Netherlands</p><p>Bronze: Kjeld Nuis, Netherlands</p><p><em>Born in Moscow, Yuskov, who thought he was going to soccer practice at his first training session, grew up in Moldova.</em></p><p><strong>5,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Sven Kramer, Netherlands</p><p>Silver: Ted-Jan Bloemen, Canada</p><p>Bronze: Nicola Tumolero, Italy</p><p><em>Dual citizen Bloemen is a Dutch native.</em></p><p><strong>10,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Sven Kramer, Netherlands</p><p>Silver: Jorrit Bergsma, Netherlands</p><p>Bronze: Patrick Beckert, Germany</p><p><em>Kramer’s girlfriend, Naomi van As, won two Olympic golds in field hockey.</em></p><p><strong>Team Pursuit</strong></p><p>Gold: Netherlands</p><p>Silver: Norway</p><p>Bronze: Canada</p><p><em>Dutch skaters won eight of 12 races in Sochi.</em></p><p><strong>Mass Start</strong></p><p>Gold: Lee Seung-hoon, South Korea</p><p>Silver: Joey Mantia, U.S.</p><p>Bronze: Sven Kramer, Netherlands</p><p><em>Mantia twice won Pan-Am Games golds in in-line skating.</em></p><p><b>WOMEN</b></p><p><strong>500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Nao Kodaira, Japan</p><p>Silver: Lee Sang-hwa, South Korea</p><p>Bronze: Arisa Go, Japan</p><p><em>Two-time Olympic champ Lee turns 29 on the day of the closing ceremony.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Nao Kodaira, Japan</p><p>Silver: Miho Takagi, Japan</p><p>Bronze: Heather Bergsma, U.S.</p><p><em>Bergsma and her Dutch husband, Jorrit, have combined for 23 worlds medals.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Miho Takagi, Japan</p><p>Silver: Marrit Leenstra, Netherlands</p><p>Bronze: Ireen Wüst, Netherlands</p><p><em>Takagi was a 2010 Olympian at age 15.</em></p><p><strong>3,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Martina Sábliková, Czech Republic</p><p>Silver: Claudia Pechstein, Germany</p><p>Bronze: Antoinette de Jong, Netherlands</p><p><em>European 3K champ Esmee Visser made the Dutch team only at 5K.</em></p><p><strong>5,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Martina Sábliková, Czech Republic</p><p>Silver: Natalia Voronina, Russia</p><p>Bronze: Claudia Pechstein, Germany</p><p>Sábliková is a former national cycling champ in the time trial.</p><p><strong>Mass Start</strong></p><p>Gold: Francesca Lollobrigida, Italy</p><p>Silver: Kim Bo-reum, South Korea</p><p>Bronze: Guo Dan, China</p><p><em>The mass start returns to the Olympics after an 86-year layoff.</em></p><p><strong>Team Pursuit</strong></p><p>Gold: Netherlands</p><p>Silver: Japan</p><p>Bronze: Germany</p><p><em>Dutch skaters won 23 medals in Sochi; Poland was next with three.</em></p><h3>Short Track</h3><h3>MEN</h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Wu Dajing, China</p><p>Silver: Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary</p><p>Bronze: Samuel Girard, Canada</p><p><em>Wu says his sports hero is Michael Phelps.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary</p><p>Silver: Wu Dajing, China</p><p>Bronze: Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea</p><p><em>Sándor’s girlfriend is Elise Christie.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea</p><p>Silver: Charles Hamelin, Canada</p><p>Bronze: Sjinkie Knegt, Netherlands</p><p><em>In 2014, Knegt became the first Dutch person to win a short-track medal.</em></p><p><strong>5,000-Meter Relay</strong></p><p>Gold: South Korea</p><p>Silver: Canada</p><p>Bronze: Netherlands</p><p><em>The U.S. team could nab a medal.</em></p><h3><b>WOMEN</b></h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Choi Min-jeong, South Korea</p><p>Silver: Marianne St-Gelais, Canada</p><p>Bronze: Elise Christie, Great Britain</p><p><em>South Korea has never won gold or silver at 500.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Choi Min-jeong, South Korea</p><p>Silver: Kim Boutin, Canada</p><p>Bronze: Elise Christie, Great Britain</p><p><em>Christie has dyed her hair a dozen different colors before events.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong></p><p>Gold: Choi Min-jeong, South Korea</p><p>Silver: Shim Suk-hee, South Korea</p><p>Bronze: Kim Boutin, Canada</p><p><em>In 2015, Choi was world champ at age 16.</em></p><p><strong>3,000-Meter Relay</strong></p><p>Gold: South Korea</p><p>Silver: China</p><p>Bronze: Canada</p><p><em>All but five of South Korea’s 26 winter golds have come in short track.</em></p><p>Check out Brian’s medal predictions for all 102 events in the magazine.</p>
2018 Winter Olympics: Speed Skating Guide and Preview for PyeongChang

With the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea fast approaching, here’s everything you need to know about speed skating.

The Olympics begin Thursday, Feb. 8 and conclude Sunday, Feb. 25. Speed skating will be contested from Feb. 10 to 24 with medals on the line for 14 different events. At the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, the Netherlands won eight out of 12 available gold medals but did manage to claim a medal in every event.

Check out the full speed skating schedule here.

In December, Sports Illustrated published a Rookie's Guide to Speed Skating with information about the background, selection process, rules and format of the sport. I challenge you to read that guide and not want to watch speed skating at this year's Olympics. The competition is going to be a lot of fun.

In the January 29-February 5 Olympic Preview issue of Sports Illustrated’s magazine, our expert Brian Cazeneuve gave his medal predictions. Here are his picks for speed skating:

Speedskating

MEN

500 Meters

Gold: Ronald Mulder, Netherlands

Silver: Kai Verbij, Netherlands

Bronze: Håvard Holmefjord Lorentzen, Norway

Mulder’s twin, Michel, won the 500-meter long-track event in Sochi and came in third at 1,000 meters.

1,000 Meters

Gold: Kjeld Nuis, Netherlands

Silver: Kai Verbij, Netherlands

Bronze: Vincent De Haître, Canada

De Haître was Canada’s 1,000-meter track cycling champ in 2013.

1,500 Meters

Gold: Denis Yuskov, Russia

Silver: Koen Verweij, Netherlands

Bronze: Kjeld Nuis, Netherlands

Born in Moscow, Yuskov, who thought he was going to soccer practice at his first training session, grew up in Moldova.

5,000 Meters

Gold: Sven Kramer, Netherlands

Silver: Ted-Jan Bloemen, Canada

Bronze: Nicola Tumolero, Italy

Dual citizen Bloemen is a Dutch native.

10,000 Meters

Gold: Sven Kramer, Netherlands

Silver: Jorrit Bergsma, Netherlands

Bronze: Patrick Beckert, Germany

Kramer’s girlfriend, Naomi van As, won two Olympic golds in field hockey.

Team Pursuit

Gold: Netherlands

Silver: Norway

Bronze: Canada

Dutch skaters won eight of 12 races in Sochi.

Mass Start

Gold: Lee Seung-hoon, South Korea

Silver: Joey Mantia, U.S.

Bronze: Sven Kramer, Netherlands

Mantia twice won Pan-Am Games golds in in-line skating.

WOMEN

500 Meters

Gold: Nao Kodaira, Japan

Silver: Lee Sang-hwa, South Korea

Bronze: Arisa Go, Japan

Two-time Olympic champ Lee turns 29 on the day of the closing ceremony.

1,000 Meters

Gold: Nao Kodaira, Japan

Silver: Miho Takagi, Japan

Bronze: Heather Bergsma, U.S.

Bergsma and her Dutch husband, Jorrit, have combined for 23 worlds medals.

1,500 Meters

Gold: Miho Takagi, Japan

Silver: Marrit Leenstra, Netherlands

Bronze: Ireen Wüst, Netherlands

Takagi was a 2010 Olympian at age 15.

3,000 Meters

Gold: Martina Sábliková, Czech Republic

Silver: Claudia Pechstein, Germany

Bronze: Antoinette de Jong, Netherlands

European 3K champ Esmee Visser made the Dutch team only at 5K.

5,000 Meters

Gold: Martina Sábliková, Czech Republic

Silver: Natalia Voronina, Russia

Bronze: Claudia Pechstein, Germany

Sábliková is a former national cycling champ in the time trial.

Mass Start

Gold: Francesca Lollobrigida, Italy

Silver: Kim Bo-reum, South Korea

Bronze: Guo Dan, China

The mass start returns to the Olympics after an 86-year layoff.

Team Pursuit

Gold: Netherlands

Silver: Japan

Bronze: Germany

Dutch skaters won 23 medals in Sochi; Poland was next with three.

Short Track

MEN

500 Meters

Gold: Wu Dajing, China

Silver: Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary

Bronze: Samuel Girard, Canada

Wu says his sports hero is Michael Phelps.

1,000 Meters

Gold: Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary

Silver: Wu Dajing, China

Bronze: Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea

Sándor’s girlfriend is Elise Christie.

1,500 Meters

Gold: Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea

Silver: Charles Hamelin, Canada

Bronze: Sjinkie Knegt, Netherlands

In 2014, Knegt became the first Dutch person to win a short-track medal.

5,000-Meter Relay

Gold: South Korea

Silver: Canada

Bronze: Netherlands

The U.S. team could nab a medal.

WOMEN

500 Meters

Gold: Choi Min-jeong, South Korea

Silver: Marianne St-Gelais, Canada

Bronze: Elise Christie, Great Britain

South Korea has never won gold or silver at 500.

1,000 Meters

Gold: Choi Min-jeong, South Korea

Silver: Kim Boutin, Canada

Bronze: Elise Christie, Great Britain

Christie has dyed her hair a dozen different colors before events.

1,500 Meters

Gold: Choi Min-jeong, South Korea

Silver: Shim Suk-hee, South Korea

Bronze: Kim Boutin, Canada

In 2015, Choi was world champ at age 16.

3,000-Meter Relay

Gold: South Korea

Silver: China

Bronze: Canada

All but five of South Korea’s 26 winter golds have come in short track.

Check out Brian’s medal predictions for all 102 events in the magazine.

<p>With the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea fast approaching, here’s everything you need to know about short track speed skating. </p><p>Short track speed skating is now one event, but an umbrella term that encompasses four men&#39;s and four women&#39;s races. Each race takes place on an oval track of ice that is 111.2 meters long, while the entire sheet of ice is 60 meters long and 30 meters wide. </p><p>In PyeongChang, short track competition begins with the men&#39;s 1500m qualification heats on Feb. 10 and wraps up with the men&#39;s 5000m relay finals on Feb. 23. </p><p>A full schedule of all 10 events can be seen <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2017/10/16/winter-olympics-2018-alpine-skiing-schedule" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:here" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">here</a>. </p><p>In December, SI.com published a <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2017/12/04/2018-Winter-Olympics-Rookies-Guide-Alpine-Skiing-PyeongChang" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Rookie’s Guide to Short Track Speed Skating" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Rookie’s Guide to Short Track Speed Skating</a> with information about each specific event, including the rules, history, 2014 medal winners and current world champion. </p><p>The short track races put a premium on explosiveness and strategy, but the skaters&#39; synchronized movements and long, smooth strides give the competition an element of elegance. Speed skating is the quintessential Winter Olympic sport—it&#39;s nearly impossible not to enjoy, but it&#39;s also highly unlikely that you&#39;ll watch any non-Olympic action. So now is the perfect time to brush up before you get your fill that&#39;ll last you four years.</p><p>In the January 29-February 5 Olympic Preview issue of <em>Sports Illustrated</em>’s magazine, our expert Brian Cazeneuve gave his medal predictions. Here are his picks for short track speed skating:</p><h3>MEN</h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong><br>? Wu Dajing, China<br>? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary<br>? Samuel Girard, Canada<br><em>Wu says his sports hero is Michael Phelps.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong><br>? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary<br>? Wu Dajing, China<br>? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea<br><em>Sándor’s girlfriend is Elise Christie.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong><br>? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea<br>? Charles Hamelin, Canada<br>? Sjinkie Knegt, Netherlands<br><em>In 2014, Knegt became the first Dutch person to win a short-track medal.</em></p><p><strong>5,000-Meter Relay</strong><br>? South Korea<br>? Canada<br>? Netherlands<br><em>The U.S. team could nab a medal.</em></p><h3>WOMEN</h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong><br>? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea<br>? Marianne St-Gelais, Canada<br>? Elise Christie, Great Britain<br><em>South Korea has never won gold or silver at 500.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong><br>? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea<br>? Kim Boutin, Canada<br>? Elise Christie, Great Britain<br><em>Christie has dyed her hair a dozen different colors before events.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong><br>? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea<br>? Shim Suk-hee, South Korea<br>? Kim Boutin, Canada<br><em>In 2015, Choi was world champ at age 16.</em></p><p><strong>3,000-Meter Relay</strong><br>? South Korea<br>? China<br>? Canada<br><em>All but five of South Korea’s 26 winter golds have come in short track.</em></p><p>Check out the rest of Brian’s medal predictions for all 102 events in the magazine.</p>
2018 Winter Olympics: Short Track Speed Skating Guide and Preview for PyeongChang

With the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea fast approaching, here’s everything you need to know about short track speed skating.

Short track speed skating is now one event, but an umbrella term that encompasses four men's and four women's races. Each race takes place on an oval track of ice that is 111.2 meters long, while the entire sheet of ice is 60 meters long and 30 meters wide.

In PyeongChang, short track competition begins with the men's 1500m qualification heats on Feb. 10 and wraps up with the men's 5000m relay finals on Feb. 23.

A full schedule of all 10 events can be seen here.

In December, SI.com published a Rookie’s Guide to Short Track Speed Skating with information about each specific event, including the rules, history, 2014 medal winners and current world champion.

The short track races put a premium on explosiveness and strategy, but the skaters' synchronized movements and long, smooth strides give the competition an element of elegance. Speed skating is the quintessential Winter Olympic sport—it's nearly impossible not to enjoy, but it's also highly unlikely that you'll watch any non-Olympic action. So now is the perfect time to brush up before you get your fill that'll last you four years.

In the January 29-February 5 Olympic Preview issue of Sports Illustrated’s magazine, our expert Brian Cazeneuve gave his medal predictions. Here are his picks for short track speed skating:

MEN

500 Meters
? Wu Dajing, China
? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary
? Samuel Girard, Canada
Wu says his sports hero is Michael Phelps.

1,000 Meters
? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary
? Wu Dajing, China
? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea
Sándor’s girlfriend is Elise Christie.

1,500 Meters
? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea
? Charles Hamelin, Canada
? Sjinkie Knegt, Netherlands
In 2014, Knegt became the first Dutch person to win a short-track medal.

5,000-Meter Relay
? South Korea
? Canada
? Netherlands
The U.S. team could nab a medal.

WOMEN

500 Meters
? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea
? Marianne St-Gelais, Canada
? Elise Christie, Great Britain
South Korea has never won gold or silver at 500.

1,000 Meters
? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea
? Kim Boutin, Canada
? Elise Christie, Great Britain
Christie has dyed her hair a dozen different colors before events.

1,500 Meters
? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea
? Shim Suk-hee, South Korea
? Kim Boutin, Canada
In 2015, Choi was world champ at age 16.

3,000-Meter Relay
? South Korea
? China
? Canada
All but five of South Korea’s 26 winter golds have come in short track.

Check out the rest of Brian’s medal predictions for all 102 events in the magazine.

<p>With the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea fast approaching, here’s everything you need to know about short track speed skating. </p><p>Short track speed skating is now one event, but an umbrella term that encompasses four men&#39;s and four women&#39;s races. Each race takes place on an oval track of ice that is 111.2 meters long, while the entire sheet of ice is 60 meters long and 30 meters wide. </p><p>In PyeongChang, short track competition begins with the men&#39;s 1500m qualification heats on Feb. 10 and wraps up with the men&#39;s 5000m relay finals on Feb. 23. </p><p>A full schedule of all 10 events can be seen <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2017/10/16/winter-olympics-2018-alpine-skiing-schedule" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:here" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">here</a>. </p><p>In December, SI.com published a <a href="https://www.si.com/olympics/2017/12/04/2018-Winter-Olympics-Rookies-Guide-Alpine-Skiing-PyeongChang" rel="nofollow noopener" target="_blank" data-ylk="slk:Rookie’s Guide to Short Track Speed Skating" class="link rapid-noclick-resp">Rookie’s Guide to Short Track Speed Skating</a> with information about each specific event, including the rules, history, 2014 medal winners and current world champion. </p><p>The short track races put a premium on explosiveness and strategy, but the skaters&#39; synchronized movements and long, smooth strides give the competition an element of elegance. Speed skating is the quintessential Winter Olympic sport—it&#39;s nearly impossible not to enjoy, but it&#39;s also highly unlikely that you&#39;ll watch any non-Olympic action. So now is the perfect time to brush up before you get your fill that&#39;ll last you four years.</p><p>In the January 29-February 5 Olympic Preview issue of <em>Sports Illustrated</em>’s magazine, our expert Brian Cazeneuve gave his medal predictions. Here are his picks for short track speed skating:</p><h3>MEN</h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong><br>? Wu Dajing, China<br>? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary<br>? Samuel Girard, Canada<br><em>Wu says his sports hero is Michael Phelps.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong><br>? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary<br>? Wu Dajing, China<br>? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea<br><em>Sándor’s girlfriend is Elise Christie.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong><br>? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea<br>? Charles Hamelin, Canada<br>? Sjinkie Knegt, Netherlands<br><em>In 2014, Knegt became the first Dutch person to win a short-track medal.</em></p><p><strong>5,000-Meter Relay</strong><br>? South Korea<br>? Canada<br>? Netherlands<br><em>The U.S. team could nab a medal.</em></p><h3>WOMEN</h3><p><strong>500 Meters</strong><br>? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea<br>? Marianne St-Gelais, Canada<br>? Elise Christie, Great Britain<br><em>South Korea has never won gold or silver at 500.</em></p><p><strong>1,000 Meters</strong><br>? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea<br>? Kim Boutin, Canada<br>? Elise Christie, Great Britain<br><em>Christie has dyed her hair a dozen different colors before events.</em></p><p><strong>1,500 Meters</strong><br>? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea<br>? Shim Suk-hee, South Korea<br>? Kim Boutin, Canada<br><em>In 2015, Choi was world champ at age 16.</em></p><p><strong>3,000-Meter Relay</strong><br>? South Korea<br>? China<br>? Canada<br><em>All but five of South Korea’s 26 winter golds have come in short track.</em></p><p>Check out the rest of Brian’s medal predictions for all 102 events in the magazine.</p>
2018 Winter Olympics: Short Track Speed Skating Guide and Preview for PyeongChang

With the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea fast approaching, here’s everything you need to know about short track speed skating.

Short track speed skating is now one event, but an umbrella term that encompasses four men's and four women's races. Each race takes place on an oval track of ice that is 111.2 meters long, while the entire sheet of ice is 60 meters long and 30 meters wide.

In PyeongChang, short track competition begins with the men's 1500m qualification heats on Feb. 10 and wraps up with the men's 5000m relay finals on Feb. 23.

A full schedule of all 10 events can be seen here.

In December, SI.com published a Rookie’s Guide to Short Track Speed Skating with information about each specific event, including the rules, history, 2014 medal winners and current world champion.

The short track races put a premium on explosiveness and strategy, but the skaters' synchronized movements and long, smooth strides give the competition an element of elegance. Speed skating is the quintessential Winter Olympic sport—it's nearly impossible not to enjoy, but it's also highly unlikely that you'll watch any non-Olympic action. So now is the perfect time to brush up before you get your fill that'll last you four years.

In the January 29-February 5 Olympic Preview issue of Sports Illustrated’s magazine, our expert Brian Cazeneuve gave his medal predictions. Here are his picks for short track speed skating:

MEN

500 Meters
? Wu Dajing, China
? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary
? Samuel Girard, Canada
Wu says his sports hero is Michael Phelps.

1,000 Meters
? Shaolin Sándor Liu, Hungary
? Wu Dajing, China
? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea
Sándor’s girlfriend is Elise Christie.

1,500 Meters
? Hwang Dae-heon, South Korea
? Charles Hamelin, Canada
? Sjinkie Knegt, Netherlands
In 2014, Knegt became the first Dutch person to win a short-track medal.

5,000-Meter Relay
? South Korea
? Canada
? Netherlands
The U.S. team could nab a medal.

WOMEN

500 Meters
? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea
? Marianne St-Gelais, Canada
? Elise Christie, Great Britain
South Korea has never won gold or silver at 500.

1,000 Meters
? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea
? Kim Boutin, Canada
? Elise Christie, Great Britain
Christie has dyed her hair a dozen different colors before events.

1,500 Meters
? Choi Min-jeong, South Korea
? Shim Suk-hee, South Korea
? Kim Boutin, Canada
In 2015, Choi was world champ at age 16.

3,000-Meter Relay
? South Korea
? China
? Canada
All but five of South Korea’s 26 winter golds have come in short track.

Check out the rest of Brian’s medal predictions for all 102 events in the magazine.

<p><strong>1. She does not like, uh, snow.</strong></p><p>&quot;Actually, I hate it,&quot; Kim says. &quot;I grew up in Southern California. If it&#39;s snowing on a day I&#39;m supposed to train I&#39;ll just stare out the window in all my gear and be like, Hmmm, maybe not today. I hate being cold. If my hands get cold I&#39;ll go inside to warm them up and basically never come back out. I&#39;m a little wimp.&quot;</p><p><strong>2. Kim has strong feelings about highly specific things. </strong></p><p>&quot;I take my stuff seriously,&quot; she says. &quot;If you have the nerve to give me the orange Starburst, I will cut you. If you give me fro-yo without mangoes, you&#39;re dead to me. If you say that Hawaiian pizza is gross, we&#39;re done.&quot;</p><p><strong>3. She will not let romance get in the way of gold.</strong></p><p>Kim recently broke up with her boyfriend of a year and a half, a fellow competitive snowboarder who shall remain nameless. &quot;I was hearing a lot of rumors about him, and our relationship in general,&quot; she says. &quot;And I&#39;m just at a time where I didn&#39;t really want to worry about that. So I just broke it off.&quot;</p><p>It was a business decision?</p><p>&quot;Pretty much. That sounds kind of harsh, but it&#39;s true. We&#39;re still good friends, though. At least I&#39;d like to think so.&quot;</p><p><strong>4. She is already being called the Shaun White of women’s snowboarding. </strong></p><p>Like the fabled Flying Tomato, the 5&#39;2&quot;, 115-pound Kim is redefining what is considered possible in the halfpipe, having become the only woman to land back-to-back 1080s. (She did it for the first time at the 2016 U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, joining White as the only riders to score a perfect 100 on a run at that event.) At the 2016 X Games, Kim won two gold medals at the tender age of 15 and ever since has been the presumptive golden girl in PyeongChang. In fact, Kim would have qualified for the U.S. Olympic team in 2014, but was too young.</p><p>&quot;She definitely reminds me of myself,&quot; White says with a laugh. &quot;But it&#39;s not about one big trick, it&#39;s about the way she connects the whole run. She does what I strived for: big air at the top, gnarly tricks in the middle, finish it great. I love watching her ride.&quot;</p><p><strong>5. Like all the young women in La La Land, Kim drives a Prius, but </strong>&quot;... my Prius is dope-ass,&quot; she says. &quot;I customized it and made it super sick. It&#39;s really fast. I just press down the pedal, it twitches a bit and then just blasts off. And then I&#39;m going 100 miles an hour.&quot;</p><p>Pause.</p><p>&quot;But please don&#39;t tell my parents that.&quot;</p><p><strong>6. Kim’s mom, Boran, was supposed to be the snowboarder in the family. </strong></p><p>&quot;I was just bait,&quot; Chloe says. &quot;My dad [Jong Jin] for some reason decided he and my mom should snowboard together. Maybe it was to add a little spice to their relationship? Anyway, he only brought little four-year-old me as a way to get her on the mountain. He was like, Your kid is doing a dangerous sport, and she doesn&#39;t have the support of her loving mother. What kind of parenting is this? But she hated it, and I hated it less, and so it wound up being just me and my dad. By the time I was six I would blow down the mountain and be sitting at the bottom of the lift, waiting for my dad to do all of his dainty turns and come meet me.&quot;</p><p>Back then the Kims lived in Torrance, just south of Los Angeles. (They now have a family home in La Habra, Calif., and Chloe recently bought herself a place in Las Vegas.) In the wee hours of Saturday mornings, Jong Jin would carry his daughter from her bed to the car, and she would awaken five or six hours later in the parking lot of Mammoth Mountain, 150 miles east of San Francisco in the Sierra Nevadas.</p><p>This origin story is similar to White&#39;s: He grew up in San Diego and learned to ride on weekend trips to Bear Mountain. &quot;Wait, what?&quot; says Kim, upon hearing this well-known tidbit of White&#39;s bio. &quot;This is weirding me out. Is that why everyone&#39;s like, &#39;Omigawd, your stories are so similar?&#39;&quot;</p><p>That is exactly why.</p><p>&quot;That&#39;s so crazy. O.K., yeah, I didn&#39;t know that.&quot;</p><p><strong>7. If you’re at a Starbucks in Park City Utah </strong>in December while Kim is in town working with the U.S. team, and a group of tweens who are supposed to be studying instead begin talking about Riverdale, the TV show based on the Archie comics, Kim will break off from a boring conversation about snowboarding, lean over toward these perfect strangers and chime in, &quot;Dude, Cole Sprouse is so hot.&quot;</p><p>&quot;Which one is he?&quot; a clueless middle-aged man might ask.</p><p>&quot;He&#39;s a babe,&quot; Kim says. &quot;Next question.&quot;</p><p><strong>8. Kim is not immune to the cresting hype around her Olympics debut but she remains, in fact, super chill. </strong></p><p>&quot;You can feel it in the air,&quot; she says. &quot;The Olympics are just different. I&#39;m not sure why; the pipe&#39;s the same size, the board you&#39;re riding is the same, you&#39;re competing against pretty much the same people. But the Olympics is the Olympics and I know it&#39;s a really big deal.&quot;</p><p>&quot;I worry about her a little bit,&quot; says Jake Burton, the patriarch of the sport who has been sponsoring Kim since she was 11 years old. &quot;It&#39;s like your whole existence can be defined by what happens in that minute and a half. It&#39;s very stressy. But the thing that always impresses me about Chloe is that no matter how big the event, she is always super chill. She&#39;s got a unique confidence and she puts the board down so effortless and smooth, and you can&#39;t fake that.&quot;</p><p>&quot;For whatever reason,&quot; Kim says, &quot;I&#39;m pretty good with pressure. I kinda just flip it over, and think of it as positive. &#39;Cause at the end of the day, people wouldn&#39;t expect me to win unless they really thought I could do it. So that&#39;s a good thing. Right?&quot;</p><p><strong>9. Gold or no gold, Kim is already the product of the American Dream. </strong></p><p>Jong Jin immigrated to Southern California from South Korea as a young man, arriving with $800 in cash. He bought a used car and found work at a gas station. On one of his first days, a coworker asked for a ride home and promptly stole the car and all of Jong Jin&#39;s remaining cash. He found another minimum-wage job and eventually matriculated at Long Beach State. Jong Jin earned his real estate license and saved enough money to buy a duplex, where the family lived while renting out the other floor. He would go on to amass substantial real estate holdings, including a condo in Mammoth Lakes.</p><p>Thanks to her burgeoning endorsement portfolio, Kim has already begun investing in real estate herself, with an apartment building in Korea and what she calls her &quot;bachelor pad&quot; in Vegas, which is also an attractive place of residence for tax reasons. For now her parents allow her a debit card with a $500 limit. &quot;I&#39;ve definitely learned the value of a dollar,&quot; Kim says. &quot;It&#39;s exactly 100 cents.&quot;</p><p><strong>10. Kim is still technically a high school student. </strong></p><p>She began homeschooling in the eighth grade to facilitate her training and competitive schedule. The following year she enrolled in an independent learning program through Mammoth High, using an Internet-based curriculum. &quot;I think I went [to campus] only once last year,&quot; she says. &quot;And it was just to drop off presents for my teachers. Like, here&#39;s some chocolate from Switzerland, please don&#39;t hate me.&quot;</p><p>Kim likes the idea of walking at graduation and maybe even attending the prom. &quot;But if I do really well at the Olympics I might not have time,&quot; she says. &quot;I&#39;m O.K. with that.&quot;</p><p><strong>11. An important part of Kim’s snowboarding education occurred in Switzerland. </strong></p><p>When she was eight her parents sent her to Geneva to live with her aunt Sun-hwa Kim for two years. &quot;They thought it would make me well-rounded to live overseas,&quot; she says. &quot;Or they were just sick of me. I&#39;m still not sure which.&quot;</p><p>Kim had embraced snowboarding mostly to please her dad, but it was on the vertiginous slopes of the Alps that Kim truly fell in love with the sport, in part because it brought respect from her peers that was otherwise elusive. &quot;I tried to play soccer,&quot; she says, &quot;because I wanted to be accepted by the community, but unfortunately I&#39;m not good at anything involving a ball. In fact, I&#39;m terrible. I&#39;d try to kick the ball as hard as I could and I&#39;d miss it and flip onto my back, like in cartoons. Eventually they made me the goalie and were like, Just stand there and be the chick who gets hit in the face by the ball. And I was like, I&#39;m totally down with that.&quot;</p><p><strong>12. Kim always listens to music on headphones during her runs, but uses a different song for ever competition. </strong></p><p>Ask her what she remembers about the first time she landed the 1080 and the first thing Kim says is, &quot;I was blasting Chainsmokers&#39; &#39;Roses&#39; so loud I couldn&#39;t hear the snow.&quot; Kim&#39;s tastes are eclectic: hip-hop, depressing Lana Del Rey ballads, even country. When will she decide on her tunes for PyeongChang? &quot;Like a day or two before it starts,&quot; she says. &quot;It just kind of happens, like magic.&quot;</p><p><strong>13. In the run-up to the Olympics…</strong> there will inevitably be talk of Kim&#39;s rivalry with Kelly Clark, 34, who will be competing in her fifth Winter Games, having won three previous medals. But this is about as friendly as rivalries get.</p><p>&quot;Kelly Clark has been my biggest inspiration since Day One and she&#39;s been so amazing to me,&quot; Kim says. &quot;She&#39;s always there for me. She&#39;s been through it all and there&#39;s literally nothing she doesn&#39;t know. She&#39;s a very comforting person to be around.&quot;</p><p>The (non)rivalry began in 2014, when Kim competed in her first X Games at 13. She dazzled the snowboarding world, but Clark held her off by .6 of a point to take the gold. &quot;I&#39;ve never felt like Kelly was competitive toward me,&quot; says Kim. &quot;I&#39;ve never felt that way toward her. I don&#39;t feel competitive toward anyone! The more you stress about what other people are doing, that just psychs you out. It was like the Brazilian guy obsessing over Michael Phelps in Rio—how did that work out for him?&quot;</p><p>As gracious as Clark is toward her protégé, she has her limits: She declined to be interviewed for this story, saying she wanted to focus on her training.</p><p><strong>14. Kim is afraid to watch video of herself … but not for the reason you might think.</strong></p><p>&quot;The thought of breaking my neck is not nearly as scary as having to watch myself do an interview,&quot; she says. &quot;I hate my voice. I don&#39;t think I have a Valley Girl accent, but everyone&#39;s like, &#39;You have the worst Valley Girl accent ever.&#39; And unfortunately my friends have caught on to this. I was hanging out at a buddy&#39;s house and to mess with me they cranked up the volume to 100 on the TV and played one of my interviews. I literally started screaming and ran to the bathroom upstairs and dug my face into towels and was covering my ears the whole time, while still screaming.&quot;</p><p>For the record, Kim has a perfectly pleasant voice. If she rides her best, the gold medal is her destiny, and Kim&#39;s perky interviews will be one of the soundtracks to these Games.</p><p>&quot;Oh, gawd,&quot; she groans, &quot;I can&#39;t believe you just said that. I think I just got nervous for the first time about the Olympics.&quot;</p>
Super Chill: Fourteen Things to Know About Snowboarding Prodigy Chloe Kim

1. She does not like, uh, snow.

"Actually, I hate it," Kim says. "I grew up in Southern California. If it's snowing on a day I'm supposed to train I'll just stare out the window in all my gear and be like, Hmmm, maybe not today. I hate being cold. If my hands get cold I'll go inside to warm them up and basically never come back out. I'm a little wimp."

2. Kim has strong feelings about highly specific things.

"I take my stuff seriously," she says. "If you have the nerve to give me the orange Starburst, I will cut you. If you give me fro-yo without mangoes, you're dead to me. If you say that Hawaiian pizza is gross, we're done."

3. She will not let romance get in the way of gold.

Kim recently broke up with her boyfriend of a year and a half, a fellow competitive snowboarder who shall remain nameless. "I was hearing a lot of rumors about him, and our relationship in general," she says. "And I'm just at a time where I didn't really want to worry about that. So I just broke it off."

It was a business decision?

"Pretty much. That sounds kind of harsh, but it's true. We're still good friends, though. At least I'd like to think so."

4. She is already being called the Shaun White of women’s snowboarding.

Like the fabled Flying Tomato, the 5'2", 115-pound Kim is redefining what is considered possible in the halfpipe, having become the only woman to land back-to-back 1080s. (She did it for the first time at the 2016 U.S. Snowboarding Grand Prix, joining White as the only riders to score a perfect 100 on a run at that event.) At the 2016 X Games, Kim won two gold medals at the tender age of 15 and ever since has been the presumptive golden girl in PyeongChang. In fact, Kim would have qualified for the U.S. Olympic team in 2014, but was too young.

"She definitely reminds me of myself," White says with a laugh. "But it's not about one big trick, it's about the way she connects the whole run. She does what I strived for: big air at the top, gnarly tricks in the middle, finish it great. I love watching her ride."

5. Like all the young women in La La Land, Kim drives a Prius, but "... my Prius is dope-ass," she says. "I customized it and made it super sick. It's really fast. I just press down the pedal, it twitches a bit and then just blasts off. And then I'm going 100 miles an hour."

Pause.

"But please don't tell my parents that."

6. Kim’s mom, Boran, was supposed to be the snowboarder in the family.

"I was just bait," Chloe says. "My dad [Jong Jin] for some reason decided he and my mom should snowboard together. Maybe it was to add a little spice to their relationship? Anyway, he only brought little four-year-old me as a way to get her on the mountain. He was like, Your kid is doing a dangerous sport, and she doesn't have the support of her loving mother. What kind of parenting is this? But she hated it, and I hated it less, and so it wound up being just me and my dad. By the time I was six I would blow down the mountain and be sitting at the bottom of the lift, waiting for my dad to do all of his dainty turns and come meet me."

Back then the Kims lived in Torrance, just south of Los Angeles. (They now have a family home in La Habra, Calif., and Chloe recently bought herself a place in Las Vegas.) In the wee hours of Saturday mornings, Jong Jin would carry his daughter from her bed to the car, and she would awaken five or six hours later in the parking lot of Mammoth Mountain, 150 miles east of San Francisco in the Sierra Nevadas.

This origin story is similar to White's: He grew up in San Diego and learned to ride on weekend trips to Bear Mountain. "Wait, what?" says Kim, upon hearing this well-known tidbit of White's bio. "This is weirding me out. Is that why everyone's like, 'Omigawd, your stories are so similar?'"

That is exactly why.

"That's so crazy. O.K., yeah, I didn't know that."

7. If you’re at a Starbucks in Park City Utah in December while Kim is in town working with the U.S. team, and a group of tweens who are supposed to be studying instead begin talking about Riverdale, the TV show based on the Archie comics, Kim will break off from a boring conversation about snowboarding, lean over toward these perfect strangers and chime in, "Dude, Cole Sprouse is so hot."

"Which one is he?" a clueless middle-aged man might ask.

"He's a babe," Kim says. "Next question."

8. Kim is not immune to the cresting hype around her Olympics debut but she remains, in fact, super chill.

"You can feel it in the air," she says. "The Olympics are just different. I'm not sure why; the pipe's the same size, the board you're riding is the same, you're competing against pretty much the same people. But the Olympics is the Olympics and I know it's a really big deal."

"I worry about her a little bit," says Jake Burton, the patriarch of the sport who has been sponsoring Kim since she was 11 years old. "It's like your whole existence can be defined by what happens in that minute and a half. It's very stressy. But the thing that always impresses me about Chloe is that no matter how big the event, she is always super chill. She's got a unique confidence and she puts the board down so effortless and smooth, and you can't fake that."

"For whatever reason," Kim says, "I'm pretty good with pressure. I kinda just flip it over, and think of it as positive. 'Cause at the end of the day, people wouldn't expect me to win unless they really thought I could do it. So that's a good thing. Right?"

9. Gold or no gold, Kim is already the product of the American Dream.

Jong Jin immigrated to Southern California from South Korea as a young man, arriving with $800 in cash. He bought a used car and found work at a gas station. On one of his first days, a coworker asked for a ride home and promptly stole the car and all of Jong Jin's remaining cash. He found another minimum-wage job and eventually matriculated at Long Beach State. Jong Jin earned his real estate license and saved enough money to buy a duplex, where the family lived while renting out the other floor. He would go on to amass substantial real estate holdings, including a condo in Mammoth Lakes.

Thanks to her burgeoning endorsement portfolio, Kim has already begun investing in real estate herself, with an apartment building in Korea and what she calls her "bachelor pad" in Vegas, which is also an attractive place of residence for tax reasons. For now her parents allow her a debit card with a $500 limit. "I've definitely learned the value of a dollar," Kim says. "It's exactly 100 cents."

10. Kim is still technically a high school student.

She began homeschooling in the eighth grade to facilitate her training and competitive schedule. The following year she enrolled in an independent learning program through Mammoth High, using an Internet-based curriculum. "I think I went [to campus] only once last year," she says. "And it was just to drop off presents for my teachers. Like, here's some chocolate from Switzerland, please don't hate me."

Kim likes the idea of walking at graduation and maybe even attending the prom. "But if I do really well at the Olympics I might not have time," she says. "I'm O.K. with that."

11. An important part of Kim’s snowboarding education occurred in Switzerland.

When she was eight her parents sent her to Geneva to live with her aunt Sun-hwa Kim for two years. "They thought it would make me well-rounded to live overseas," she says. "Or they were just sick of me. I'm still not sure which."

Kim had embraced snowboarding mostly to please her dad, but it was on the vertiginous slopes of the Alps that Kim truly fell in love with the sport, in part because it brought respect from her peers that was otherwise elusive. "I tried to play soccer," she says, "because I wanted to be accepted by the community, but unfortunately I'm not good at anything involving a ball. In fact, I'm terrible. I'd try to kick the ball as hard as I could and I'd miss it and flip onto my back, like in cartoons. Eventually they made me the goalie and were like, Just stand there and be the chick who gets hit in the face by the ball. And I was like, I'm totally down with that."

12. Kim always listens to music on headphones during her runs, but uses a different song for ever competition.

Ask her what she remembers about the first time she landed the 1080 and the first thing Kim says is, "I was blasting Chainsmokers' 'Roses' so loud I couldn't hear the snow." Kim's tastes are eclectic: hip-hop, depressing Lana Del Rey ballads, even country. When will she decide on her tunes for PyeongChang? "Like a day or two before it starts," she says. "It just kind of happens, like magic."

13. In the run-up to the Olympics… there will inevitably be talk of Kim's rivalry with Kelly Clark, 34, who will be competing in her fifth Winter Games, having won three previous medals. But this is about as friendly as rivalries get.

"Kelly Clark has been my biggest inspiration since Day One and she's been so amazing to me," Kim says. "She's always there for me. She's been through it all and there's literally nothing she doesn't know. She's a very comforting person to be around."

The (non)rivalry began in 2014, when Kim competed in her first X Games at 13. She dazzled the snowboarding world, but Clark held her off by .6 of a point to take the gold. "I've never felt like Kelly was competitive toward me," says Kim. "I've never felt that way toward her. I don't feel competitive toward anyone! The more you stress about what other people are doing, that just psychs you out. It was like the Brazilian guy obsessing over Michael Phelps in Rio—how did that work out for him?"

As gracious as Clark is toward her protégé, she has her limits: She declined to be interviewed for this story, saying she wanted to focus on her training.

14. Kim is afraid to watch video of herself … but not for the reason you might think.

"The thought of breaking my neck is not nearly as scary as having to watch myself do an interview," she says. "I hate my voice. I don't think I have a Valley Girl accent, but everyone's like, 'You have the worst Valley Girl accent ever.' And unfortunately my friends have caught on to this. I was hanging out at a buddy's house and to mess with me they cranked up the volume to 100 on the TV and played one of my interviews. I literally started screaming and ran to the bathroom upstairs and dug my face into towels and was covering my ears the whole time, while still screaming."

For the record, Kim has a perfectly pleasant voice. If she rides her best, the gold medal is her destiny, and Kim's perky interviews will be one of the soundtracks to these Games.

"Oh, gawd," she groans, "I can't believe you just said that. I think I just got nervous for the first time about the Olympics."

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