Reps from both the U.S. and Russia are preparing for battle after the IOC recommended the expulsion of wrestling from the Olympics in a vote last week.
USA Wrestling announced Monday that is has created the Committee for the Preservation of Olympic Wrestling, which will be headed by former world champ Bill Scherr. The group will work with FILA and the IOC in an attempt to restore the sports Olympic status in time for the 2020 Games, and plans “mobilize and energize” American support for the sport and their cause.
Meanwhile Mikhail Mamiashvili, Russia’s representative in the sports governing body, has vowed to overturn the decision made by the IOC:
“We will look for a compromise and ways to convince the members of the International Olympic Committee that this sport, which was part of the ancient games and is loved by hundreds of millions of people across the globe, should remain.”
Mamiashvili helped oust former FILA head Raphael Martinetti of Switzerland, who received a vote of no confidence this weekend after he was accused of negligence for failing to prevent the sport’s expulsion.
While the decision isn’t expected to be overturned, both countries carry some weight in the discussion, since Russia has won the most wrestling medals in every Olympics since it first competed as an independent nation in 1996. And since the United States is, you know, the United States.
Fenway Park will host some of the world’s best freeskiers in the one-of-a-kind Big Air at Fenway, live on NBC Sports Live Extra on Friday night.
Big air skiers will descend from a ramp that’s four times higher than the Green Monster inside the hallowed Boston Red Sox home.
Ski big air is most like slopestyle of the current Olympic disciplines, except skiers get one jump per run.
WATCH LIVE: Big Air at Fenway — 8:30 p.m. ET
On Thursday, Canadian Max Parrot and American Julia Marino won the snowboard big air competitions at Fenway Park.
Big Air at Fenway coverage will conclude with an NBC show on Saturday at 5 p.m. ET.
MORE: Olympic champ suffers concussion at Big Air at Fenway practice
In an homage to the Lillehammer 1994 Winter Olympics, Princess Ingrid Alexandra of Norway lit the Lillehammer Youth Winter Olympic cauldron to cap the Opening Ceremony on Friday night.
The princess’ father, Crown Prince Haakon, lit the 1994 Olympic cauldron in a very similar fashion (video here). Princess Ingrid Alexandra was born in 2004.
The Opening Ceremony, held outdoors at a ski jump (same venue as 1994) in sub-freezing temperatures, included a speech from International Olympic Committee president Thomas Bach.
“I’m just a little bit too old to compete in the YOG,” Bach said, urging listeners to use the hashtag #IloveYOG during the nine-day Winter Games.
The ceremony included Olympic legends, such as 2010 figure skating gold medalist Yuna Kim and eight-time Olympic cross-country champion Bjorn Daehlie carrying the Olympic flag.
Marit Bjoergen, a 10-time Olympic medalist cross-country skier, handed the Olympic flame to the princess.
NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra will air coverage of the Opening Ceremony on Saturday at 12:30 a.m. ET, plus daily coverage throughout the Winter Games. A full broadcast schedule is here.
MORE: Two years to Pyeongchang: Updates on U.S. Olympic medalists from Sochi