Evan Lysacek

Evan Lysacek unsure when he will return to competition

Leave a comment

NEW YORK — Evan Lysacek is back on the ice doing light training but said he couldn’t speculate on a return from a hip injury.

Lysacek, 28, hasn’t competed since his 2010 Olympic title, his comeback delayed and delayed and delayed by injuries. The latest, a torn labrum in his left hip, forced him to withdraw from last week’s Skate America.

He fell on a quadruple toe loop at Champs Camp in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Aug. 21 and stayed off the ice for about a month with what he thought was a torn abdominal muscle. On Sept. 26, an MRI revealed the torn labrum.

Now Lysacek is in a race against time. He must post a minimum score in an international competition before the U.S. Championships (Jan. 9-12) to be eligible for the Sochi Olympics. The two-man U.S. team will be named after the U.S. Championships in Boston.

Lysacek said he has a list of possible events in November and December to enter and achieve that score, but he doesn’t know when he will be in competition shape.

“I’m back to training, light training, so I’m happy to be back on the ice,” Lysacek said at a Citibank in Union Square on Saturday as dozens of children from the Figure Skating in Harlem program gathered for a meet-and-greet event. “It’s pretty diverse at this point, a lot of physical therapy, some off ice, a little bit of on ice. Just kind of getting back slowly into training, trying my best to obey doctors’ orders.”

He’ll spend the next few days in New York for events surrounding 100 days out from the Olympics and shooting a commercial for Citi through Wednesday before flying back to his training base in California.

On Sept. 30, Lysacek said at the U.S. Olympic Media Summit that he had specific goals and a timetable he’d like to hit that he made known to doctors. On Saturday, he said the healing process is out of his control.

“It’s just going to be dependent on the rate I can heal,” Lysacek said while wearing his 2010 Olympic gold medal as Katy Perry‘s “Roar” played over a sound system. “No one, including doctors, can really predict healing. … Patience has never been a virtue that I’ve possessed.”

Lysacek’s coach, Frank Carroll, told Icenetwork.com at Skate Canada that Lysacek had medical treatment Monday and, about his recovery, “I don’t know about Evan at all.”

Lysacek remains hopeful that he will heal quickly. But just how quick is the answer he can’t provide yet.

“I can’t speculate,” he said, “though I wish I could. I’m just trying to obey doctors’ orders because I’d like to nip this in the bud now instead of having it be a lingering injury.”

Patrick Chan stars at Skate Canada; U.S. men not so much

Ryan Lochte ‘wipes away the past’ in Power Bar video

Leave a comment

For the second time in as many months, Ryan Lochte stars in a jocular ad making a veiled reference to his Rio Olympic gas-station incident.

The swimmer wipes away “the past” on a foggy bathroom mirror and throws a blond wig out of a sunroof in a one-minute Power Bar video published Tuesday.

The company’s tag line in the video is “Clean Start.”

“For example, I am going to recommit myself to water sports,” Lochte says in the spot.

The ad follows a December video for Pine Bros. Softish Throat Drops, where Lochte starred in a spot with a closing banner that read, “Pine Bros.: In this Season of Forgiveness.”

Lochte had previously lost sponsorship deals, including with Speedo, after his Rio Olympic gas-station incident for which he was suspended through June by USA Swimming, plus for the world championships in July.

PHOTOS: Lochte set to be a father

U.S. Figure Skating Championships men’s preview

Leave a comment

The stage is set for Nathan Chen in Kansas City this week.

The 17-year-old is arguably the biggest favorite of any senior discipline at the U.S. Championships, looking to become the youngest U.S. men’s champion since 1966.

Chen, who boasts six quadruple jumps between his two programs, broke out at the Grand Prix Final in December by taking a silver medal. That propelled him to the top of U.S. men’s skating.

He outscored the reigning Olympic and world champions in the free skate at the Grand Prix Final in the best U.S. men’s international performance since Evan Lysacek won Olympic gold in 2010.

Chen’s chances for gold this week were boosted by the withdrawal of 2016 U.S. champion and training partner Adam Rippon due to a broken foot. And by 2015 U.S. champion Jason Brown‘s recent right leg injury.

Brown is still in the field, though, as is 2013 U.S. champion Max Aaron. Chen, Brown and Aaron are vying for two spots on the team for the world championships in two months in Helsinki.

“Those are the very clear top three,” NBC Olympics analyst Johnny Weir said. “It’ll take a disaster or a performance of a lifetime for anybody else to get into that top three.”

Friday
Men’s short program — 8:30 p.m.-midnight ET, Universal HD
Sunday
Men’s free skate — 4-6 p.m., NBC

MORE: U.S. Championships broadcast schedule
PREVIEWS: Men | Women | Pairs | Ice Dance

Nathan Chen
Age: 17
Hometown: Salt Lake City
2016 Grand Prix Final silver medalist
2016 U.S. bronze medalist
Two-time U.S. junior and novice champion

Chen came back strong this season following the first major injury of his career suffered at least year’s nationals exhibition. Hip surgery kept Chen from making his world championships debut in 2016, but he’s now poised to lead the U.S. men into Helsinki, trying to earn three Olympic berths. First, Chen goes for his first senior national title.

Tara Lipinski’s Take: Nathan is the star of the show this year. The type of talent he has doesn’t come along every day. He possibly could be on the Olympic podium next year with the technical skating he’s giving us. Artistically, his component scores, if you look at him from last nationals to this nationals, he’s a different skater. He may not be [Olympic champion Yuzuru] Hanyu yet, but he has all the makings of a great, artistic male skater. I think he’s already giving us enough, to be honest.

Jason Brown
Age: 22
Hometown: Colorado Springs
2015 U.S. champion
Fourth at 2015 World Championships

Don’t forget that Brown was one spot off the podium at the 2015 Worlds. It’s been mostly a nightmare since for the 2014 Olympic sensation. Brown missed the 2016 U.S. Championships with a back strain and revealed last week that he was off the ice for the last two weeks of December with a stress fracture in his right fibula. Brown is the only man in this week’s field who has been within 40 points of Chen’s best total score this season.

Johnny Weir’s Take: Now that Adam Rippon is out, the artistic challenger, if he can land a quad, is Jason Brown. He’s won the national title before. He knows what it takes and what that kind of pressure feels like. That is an advantage he has over Nathan Chen. If he lands the quad and creates that artistic moment, he is very favored in the U.S. by the judging panel. He will need a quad toe loop if he’s going to hold off Nathan Chen.

Max Aaron
Age: 24
Hometown: Colorado Springs
2013 U.S. champion
2015 Skate America champion

Aaron may be the best pure athlete in the field. He has finished in the top four at nationals each of the last four years, but it’ll probably take top two this week to earn a world championships spot. He’ll likely have to beat the injured Brown.

Johnny Weir’s Take: He has great skating skills. He’s a wonderful athlete. But I don’t think his free program especially is strong enough choreographically to challenge either Nathan Chen or Jason Brown.

Grant Hochstein
Age: 26
Hometown: Artesia, Calif.
Fourth at 2016 U.S. Championships
10th at 2016 World Championships

Hochstein was placed on the 2016 World Championships team after Chen withdrew due to that hip injury. He finished a respectable 10th in his worlds debut but dropped to 11th in each of his fall Grand Prix starts. Hochstein ranks seventh this season among men in the U.S. Championships field.

Tim Dolensky
Age: 24
Hometown: Kennesaw, Ga.
Seventh at 2016 U.S. Championships

Dolensky had his best U.S. Championships finish last season and ranks behind only Chen, Brown, Rippon and Aaron among U.S. skaters’ top scores this season.

Vincent Zhou
Age: 16
Hometown: Riverside, Calif.
2013 U.S. junior champion
Fifth at 2016 World Junior Championships

Zhou would be a bigger threat if he hadn’t pulled out of his last event in December with a leg injury. Still, he has the jumping firepower, when he lands them, to contend for the podium when healthy.

MORE: Wagner, Chen share training ice, favorite status at nationals