Shaun White

Shaun White talks Sochi problems, crashing I-Pod’s party on ‘Tonight Show’

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Shaun White‘s post-Sochi plans included playing shows with his band and partying with the man who beat him in the Olympic halfpipe.

The two-time Olympic champion visited “The Tonight Show” with Jimmy Fallon on Thursday and talked Sochi. White’s third Winter Games weren’t memorable. He pulled out of the first Olympic slopestyle competition and finished fourth in the halfpipe.

But the problems began as soon as he arrived at his rented house.

“The whole left side wasn’t there,” he said (full episode here). “It wasn’t built. … It was just kind of like unfinished.”

Like a doll house, he said.

“The best was the response,” White said, turning on a Russian accent. “Don’t worry. It will snow. You won’t see anything. It’ll be nice.”

It wasn’t much smoother for his snowboard teammates at the Olympic Village. White said he was told a shower floor flooded, and water dripped onto the floor below — bobsledders’ beds.

“They come back, and it’s just like monsoon,” White said.

White discussed more Sochi problems, specifically the halfpipe conditions.

“Basically we had three days to practice, and the pipe was pretty much unrideable for three days because of the, I don’t know, just the snow conditions were really bizarre,” he said. “There’s photos. They had like a fire hose and were trying to like ice it down and do all these things. … I’ve never seen that.”

White reiterated he had an off-night in the halfpipe final but that it didn’t make or break his career. The winner, Swiss Iouri Podladtchikov, is a good friend. White said he planned to see Podladtchikov later Thursday night.

“He doesn’t know I’m going,” White said. “I’m just going to show up. … I’m going to crash his party.”

White will stay in New York this weekend, playing a show at Mercury Lounge on Sunday and then “The Tonight Show” next Thursday.

U.S. snowboarder lands on Wheaties box

Nathan Chen holds off Yuzuru Hanyu to win first Grand Prix

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U.S. champion Nathan Chen opened the Grand Prix season by beating Olympic gold-medal favorite Yuzuru Hanyu.

Chen, 18, held off Hanyu at Rostelecom Cup in Moscow, totaling 293.79 points to win by 3.02 over the Japanese megastar.

Russian Yevgenia Medvedeva easily won the women’s title despite a rare fall in her free skate. Medvedeva is undefeated since 2015 Rostelecom Cup.

Full scores are here.

Chen landed four quadruple jumps in a strong but imperfect free skate for his first Grand Prix title in his second senior international season.

“I got a little tired halfway through the program and started faltering a little bit on the second quad toe – that was a big mistake,” Chen said, according to the International Skating Union .”I can’t let things like that happen in the future. But this is my first Grand Prix win, and I’m very happy with that.”

Hanyu outscored Chen in the free skate, but the American benefited from his 5.69-point lead from Friday’s short program.

Hanyu, the reigning Olympic and world champion, has never won his opening Grand Prix start in eight tries.

He did three quadruple jumps in Saturday’s free skate rather than the planned five, but did not fall as he did in the short program.

Chen has now outscored Hanyu in three of their last four head-to-head events dating to February. Hanyu got the better of Chen at the most important event — winning the world championships, where the American was sixth.

Also Saturday, two-time world medalists Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani won the ice dance with 189.24 points, sweeping both the short and free programs.

The siblings and U.S. champions have now won four straight Grand Prix titles (not counting the Grand Prix Final).

They won by 4.5 points over Russians Yekaterina Bobrova and Dmitry Soloviyev.

The world’s top two couples were not in the field — Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir and France’s Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron.

Russia swept the pairs podium, led by world bronze medalists Yevgenia Tarasova and Vladimir Morozov.

The top pairs teams from the rest of the world — including world champions Sui Wenjing and Han Cong — were not in the field.

The Rostelecom Cup women’s free skate is later Saturday.

The Grand Prix season continues next weekend with Skate Canada, headlined by three-time U.S. champion Ashley Wagner and three-time world champion Patrick Chan.

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Rostelecom Cup
Men
1. Nathan Chen (USA) — 293.79
2. Yuzuru Hanyu (JPN) — 290.77
3. Mikhail Kolyada (RUS) — 271.06
11. Grant Hochstein (USA) — 206.09

Ice Dance
1. Maia Shibutani/Alex Shibutani (USA) — 189.24
2. Yekaterina Bobrova/Dmitry Soloviyev (RUS) — 184.74
3. Alexandra Stepanova/Ivan Bukin (RUS) — 179.35
7. Rachel Parsons/Michael Parsons (USA) — 148.75

Pairs
1. Yevgenia Tarasova/Vladimir Morozov (RUS) — 224.25
2. Ksenia Stolbova/Fedor Klimov (RUS) — 204.43
3. Kristina Astakhova/Aleksey Rogonov (RUS) — 199.11
7. Marissa Castelli/Mervin Tran (USA) — 170.53

Olympic ski cross champion suffers serious knee injury

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Canadian Marielle Thompson, the reigning Olympic and World Cup ski cross champion, ruptured an ACL and MCL in a training crash in Switzerland.

Alpine Canada did not say when the accident happened or what Thompson’s chances are of returning to defend her Olympic title in PyeongChang.

Thompson flew from Switzerland to Vancouver for an MRI that confirmed the injury.

“I’ll be making a plan with my team moving forward and when the time is right getting back on the ski cross course stronger than ever,” Thompson said in a press release.

Thompson, 25, tore a meniscus in January 2015 and returned to competition 11 months later. She won seven of the 13 World Cup races last season.

Other Olympic medal contenders include Swede Sandra Näslund and Swiss Fanny Smith.

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