Mirai Nagasu

Mirai Nagasu on missing Olympics: ‘I don’t think I’ll ever agree with the decision’

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Mirai Nagasu remains upset after being left off the U.S. Olympic Team in January, but she still enjoys skating as she sets out on the Stars on Ice Tour beginning in Fort Myers, Fla., on Friday.

The 2010 Olympian Nagasu finished third at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Boston in January but was passed over for the three-woman Olympic Team selected by a U.S. Figure Skating committee.

The committee chooses the Olympic Team not only based on U.S. Championships results but also finishes from recent senior and junior national and international competitions.

The group that went to Sochi was made up of U.S. champion Gracie Gold, second-place Polina Edmunds and fourth-place Ashley Wagner. Wagner won the 2012 and 2013 U.S. Championships.

“I don’t think I’ll ever agree with the decision that they made,” Nagasu told icenetwork.com. “But as I said in my statement at nationals, I can only respect the decision made by the federation.”

Nagasu admirably skated in an exhibition at the U.S. Championships hours after learning she did not make the Olympic Team, attended a send-off party for the Olympic Team and texted Wagner support.

Nagasu was boosted by words from 1988 Olympic champion Brian Boitano.

“He only talked to me for a moment, but he came by and told me that he knew things were hard at the moment, but he also knew I would be stronger because of it,” Nagasu said, according to the website. “He might not even remember what he said, but it really meant a lot. I don’t know if he’ll ever really know how much that meant.”

Nagasu, 20, got sick after the U.S. Championships but competed anyway at the Four Continents Championships later in January, finishing 10th. She has said she will continue skating with a goal of making another Olympic Team.

She’ll likely go up against Gold, Edmunds and Wagner again, as all three are expected to keep skating, too. The 2015 U.S. Figure Skating Championships are in Greensboro, N.C., in January.

Evan Lysacek pain free and training again

Ashton Eaton named male IAAF Athlete of the Year

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American decathlete Ashton Eaton was named the 2015 male Athlete of the Year by the International Association of Athletics Federations, the world governing body for track and field. Ethiopia’s Genzebe Dibaba, the reigning world champion in the 1500m, was named the female IAAF Athlete of the Year.

Eaton is the first decathlete and just the eighth American man to win the title. Tyson Gay in 2007 was the last American man to be named.

The honor came due to Eaton’s world-record-setting performance at the world championships held in Beijing this past August. There he beat the previous record, his own from the 2012 Olympic Trials, by nine points. He also set a world record for running the fastest 400m portion of the decathlon in 45.00 seconds.

In the IAAF press release, Eaton said, “Athletes spend the most vigorous years of human life, arguably called the ‘best years’, working to hone their abilities. So, when an athlete competes, what people are witnessing is the manifestation of what a human being is capable of when they choose to direct all of their time and effort towards something.

“I’m grateful and thankful to the IAAF for excellent competitions, the canvases that allow us to display our work.”

He also acknowledged sprinter Usain Bolt and triple jumper Christian Taylor, who were also up for the title: “While I’m honored that I am considered the ‘artist’ of the year, I did not beat Usain and Christian; my work simply differed in design. They are some of the most talented and beautiful performers of all time. I’m flattered to be among them.”

Dibaba has been unbeaten in the 1500m over five races in 2015. Along with winning gold and setting a world record in the 1500 at the Beijing World Championships, Diababa won a bronze medal in the 5000m event.

She gratefully accepted the award, saying, “After being a finalist and narrowly missing out on this award one year ago, I am very proud to be recognized by the fans and experts of our sport.

“I had a great season and truly enjoyed competing around the world, from Monaco where I managed to establish a world record, to Beijing where I finally captured my first world outdoor title.”

Dibaba was recently featured in a family-themed promotional video for the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio.

MORE: Seb Coe splits from Nike as IAAF president


Olympians celebrate Thanksgiving

Meryl Davis
Team USA/ Twitter
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Nov. 26 – or Thanksgiving to the rest of us – is oftentimes a typical training day for many Olympians and Olympic hopefuls. Here’s a look at how some of them spent the day training, competing, celebrating, and being thankful.

Workout football and food😁👍!!! Happy thanksgiving everyone!!!

A photo posted by Michael Phelps (@m_phelps00) on

Happy Thanksgiving from our cold cuts Turkey to yours! #family #happyhappyheart

A photo posted by @cammileadams on

Happy Thanksgiving from the SwimMAC Parade crew!

A photo posted by Tyler Clary (@tylerclary) on


MORE: NBC’s Thanksgiving Rio promo