Sochi Olympics Figure Skating

Davis and White set world record, take lead after short dance

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The defending Olympic ice dancing champions threw down the gauntlet. And Meryl Davis and Charlie White met the challenge.

Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir of Canada, the 2010 gold medalists from Vancouver, delivered a tremendous short dance that earned a leading score of 76.33. But on the final skate of the night, Team USA’s Davis and White answered by earning a world-record short dance score of 78.89 to take the lead going into tomorrow’s free dance.

The previous top short dance mark was one set by Davis and White themselves, a 77.66 from the 2013 Grand Prix Final.

Davis/White and Virtue/Moir, who share a coach and also train together, were expected to be the class of the ice dancing field in Sochi and they’ve lived up to the billing so far.

Here’s when you’ll see both compete during the free dance:

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But Russian fans will also be watching to see if Elena Ilinykh and Nikita Katasalpov can give the host nation a medal. The pair holds a very slim grip on the bronze after today over France’s Nathalie Pechalat and Fabian Bourzat, while another Russian duo, Ekaterina Borbova and Dmitri Soloviev, sits in fifth place.

The other two American dancing duos, Madison Chock and Evan Bates and the Shibutani siblings, Maia and Alex, are hanging on to Top-10 spots going into tomorrow.

FIGURE SKATING – ICE DANCING, SHORT PROGRAM (TOP 10)
1. Davis/White (USA), 78.89
2. Virtue/Moir (CAN), 76.33
3. Ilinykh/Katsalapov (RUS), 73.04
4. Pechalat/Bourzat (FRA), 72.78
5. Bobrova/Soloviev (RUS), 69.97
6. Cappellini/Lanotte (ITA), 67.58
7. Weaver/Poje (CAN), 65.93
8. Chock/Bates (USA), 65.46
9. Shibutani/Shibutani (USA), 64.47
10. Zhiganshina/Gazsi (GER), 60.91

Craig Sager will miss Rio Olympics as he battles leukemia

CLEVELAND, OH - JUNE 16:  Legendary TNT sideline reporter Craig Sager talks with Game 6 of the 2016 NBA Finals between the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Golden State Warriors at Quicken Loans Arena on June 16, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. Sager is on a one game assignment for ESPN. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
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Basketball reporter Craig Sager will miss the Rio Games as he returns to a cancer center to continue his battle against acute myeloid leukemia, NBC announced in a statement Thursday.

Sager was set to cover his fifth straight Olympics for NBC, but instead needs to undergo a third bone marrow transplant at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. He resumed receiving chemotherapy on Wednesday, according to the Houston Chronicle, with the goal being to force the disease into remission so the transplant can be performed next month.

“We’ve known since February we would have to have the third transplant,” Sager told the Chronicle. “We tried to delay it until after the Olympics, but (the disease) is very aggressive, and there is a sense of urgency to do it now.”

Sager was diagnosed in 2014, went into remission after a bone marrow transplant, was told the cancer came back in March 2015, underwent a second transplant last year, and then found out in February he was no longer in remission.

“My body isn’t getting stronger, so they want to do it while I’m strong enough,” Sager said. “Third transplants are kind of rare, so hopefully we will get it done and I’ll be ready in time for (NBA) opening night.”

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Details of NBC Olympics’ Facebook, Instagram content for Rio

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NBC Olympics, Facebook and Instagram will team up to provide video highlights and interviews on social media daily during the Rio Olympics.

An on-site “Social Command Center” in Rio will capture Facebook Live content, including interviews with athletes and NBC Olympics commentators.

A daily two-minute recap video will be produced for Facebook, while Instagram will have a daily slow-motion video around an inspiring moment.

Instagram will also feature NBC Olympics commentators and athletes on its own account, @instagram, along with highlights of NBC videos through its Search & Explore video channels.

More on the NBC Olympics, Facebook and Instagram partnerships is here.

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