Some odds, ends and observations about the Winter Olympics as we try to figure out what is being shown live and what is not. It’s a lot like the staff meetings we have at the office.
Monday night highlight
American snowboarder Chloe Kim is the kind of athlete who can own these games. She’s young (17), bubbly and wonderfully honest.
She’ll try to win her first Olympic gold medal Monday night (9 p.m. Eastern, live on NBC).
Kim finished first in each of the two qualifying runs in the women’s halfpipe as windy conditions continued to torment skiers and snowboarders at the Pyeongchang Games.
Teammate Kelly Clark, a five-time Olympian who first won gold at Salt Lake City in 2002, qualified by the skin of her board after two lackluster runs. “Today was a fluke,” Clark said after finishing 11th. Only the top 12 qualify. Americans Maddie Mastro (4th) and Arielle Gold (12th) also made it through.
Kim’s parents emigrated to southern California from South Korea in 1982, so all she has known growing up is American culture.
“I have a Korean face and I feel like I can’t walk around telling people I’m straight-up American,” she told the San Diego Union Tribune. “I’m Korean-American. (But) I always get the question, ‘Where are you from?’ ”
Kim, who was born in Long Beach, Calif., was good enough to compete in Sochi four years ago, but did not meet the minimum age of 15.
“I’m always more nervous in qualies,” Kim said. “Now I can really focus on what I want to do.”
Oh and I also had 2 churros today and they were pretty bomb so if you ever get nervous go eat a churro
— Chloe Kim (@chloekimsnow) February 11, 2018
The big question
When do the U.S. hockey teams play?
The women will have their second game of preliminary play on Tuesday at 7 a.m. (Eastern) against the athletes from Russia. NBCSN will televise. The U.S. women beat Finland, 3-1, on Sunday.
The men will play their first game of these Olympics on Wednesday at 7 a.m. (Eastern) against Slovenia, also on NBCSN.
Bobby Sanguinetti (Lumberton, N.J.), Ryan Gunderson (Bensalem), Brian O’Neill (Yardley) and Chad Kolarik (Abington) are among the locals on the men’s team.
This and that
The Associated Press reported that 17 more cases of norovirus were reported, bumping the total to 194. Again, that’s just the reported number. Eight came from Pyeongchang and nine from Gangneung, where the ice sporting events are held. A quarter of the cases still remain quarantined with symptoms that include vomiting and diarrhea. Lovely. … Monday’s women’s giant slalom was postponed until Thursday because of high winds. Popular American Mikaela Shiffrin is expected to make her debut Wednesday in the slalom, the event in which she won gold in Sochi in 2014. … Switzerland will face Canada on Tuesday at 6:05 a.m. Eastern for the first gold medal in mixed doubles curling. CNBC will televise the match at 5 p.m. Tuesday.
Athlete of the day
Mirai Nagasu became the first American woman to land a triple axel at the Olympics. Nagasu and her teammates brought home the bronze in team competition. Nagasu, 24, has landed triple axels in other international competition. Her parents emigrated to the United States from Japan.
“It’s historical and something no one can take away from me,” Nagasu said. “I wanted to make America proud.”
— NBC Olympics (@NBCOlympics) February 12, 2018
Through 12 p.m. Eastern, Monday, Feb 12
Gold: Red Gerard (snowboarding/men’s slopestyle), Jamie Anderson (snowboarding/women’s slopestyle)
Silver: Chris Mazdzer (luge/men’s singles)
Bronze: U.S. team (figure skating)
And finally …
Former colleague Dick Jerardi used to half-jokingly say that he never saw a goal scored in hockey because he couldn’t track the puck. That’s how I feel watching luge.
American Emily Sweeney seemingly was flying down the track during preliminaries, but TV analyst Duncan Kennedy was pointing out subtle flaws halfway through the run that would be costly. Sweeney crossed the line in obvious frustration and was in 15th place a little more than one second behind — an eternity in that sport.
Five minutes later, Austrian Birgit Platzer violently crashed when she lost control coming through treacherous turn 9. This served only to reinforce two things:
One, as exciting as luge is, I’ll never figure it out. Two, the only way I’m ever getting on a luge sled is if the course is uphill.
— Lukas Zahrer (@ZaraLuk) February 12, 2018