Figure skater Jimmy Ma glad fans enjoyed ‘Turn Down for What’ (video)

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Jimmy Ma was a concert pianist who performed at Carnegie Hall (via his Icenetwork.com bio), but now he’s also the figure skater who performed to “Turn Down for What” at the U.S. Championships.

Ma’s program including the 2013 DJ Snake and Lil Jon hit — which went viral.

“The idea was to just be different, have fun with it,” Ma, a 22-year-old from Queens, N.Y., who has studied finance at Fordham University, told Icenetwork. “I don’t really care what other people think, but I wanted to have fun on the ice. I wanted to bring my personality out on the ice. It was just, like whatever, but I’m really happy people liked it.”

Ma placed 11th in the short program and has no real chance at making the PyeongChang Olympic team of three men.

But he lit up the crowd, unzipping his jacket mid-skate and adding a Michael Jordan tongue wag.

How did he choose “Turn Down for What?” USA Today has that story:

In May, Ma sat down with his choreographer Nikolai Morozov over a beer and barbeque and ran through a bunch of different tracks. After trying several out on the ice, they settled on Turn Down For What. The theme was complete with a badass persona, as Ma first thumped his chest then urged applause from the audience in the moments after the conclusion.

He will perform Saturday night’s free skate to a very different artist.

“It’s Rachmaninoff,” he said. “Boring. But, like, that’s my style on the ice. I like to show people that I can skate to this, but also I can skate to this. It’s two different ends of the spectrum that I like to show people because my personality is not poetic whatsoever.”

Ma performed to Eminem music last year (video here). What does he have in store for next season?

“Next year, that’s a long story,” said Ma, who listed “card magic” as a hobby in his International Skating Union bio. “There’s no story to that. I have no idea. I have not thought that far ahead yet.

“Raise the bar.”

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IOC: ‘More exciting initiatives’ for Korean unity in PyeongChang

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LAUSANNE, Switzerland (AP) — Olympic organizers on Friday welcomed an agreement between North and South Korea to unite athletes at the PyeongChang Winter Games and promised that “much more exciting initiatives” promoting Korean unity will emerge this weekend.

“Watch this space,” International Olympic Committee presidential spokesman Mark Adams told The Associated Press in an interview, a day before a crucial meeting of Korean delegations at Olympics headquarters in Lausanne.

He declined to elaborate, saying the decisions would come Saturday.

Referring to a detailed peace-making agreement between the rival countries announced Thursday by South Korea’s Unification Ministry, including a joint team in the women’s hockey tournament, Adams said it was “great … but these are discussions” — meaning the IOC had not yet given the deal the final green light.

“I can tell you that there will also be some much more exciting initiatives coming through as well tomorrow,” he added.

Provided that the IOC finalizes the deal, it would mark the first time the two National Olympic Committees would be competing together in a single team.

Some have questioned the fine print of the agreement announced by the two Koreas, saying it gives the combined hockey squad a far larger roster than any other national team.

Asked how the IOC planned to maintain the integrity of the sport, Adams said: “People would say that these are exceptional circumstances, and we need exceptional measures.”

“This is about the Olympic spirit,” Adams added. “And the Olympic spirit is about nations competing, athletes competing, and we will do our best make sure that it sends a signal that sport can improve the world.”

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Julia Mancuso skis final race dressed as Wonder Woman (video)

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Julia Mancuso bid farewell like only she could — with a tiara, cape and Wonder Woman suit.

The most decorated female U.S. Olympic skier with four medals announced Friday morning that today’s World Cup downhill in Cortina d’Ampezzo would be the last race of her career.

More on Mancuso’s retirement, career and immediate future here.

She raced Friday as her nickname — “Super Jules” — and coasted to the bottom 18 seconds slower than winner Sofia Goggia.

Afterward, U.S. Ski Team members sprayed her with champagne and lifted her up in the finish corral.

Mancuso chose an appropriate venue for her last race.

She notched her first World Cup podium in Cortina in January 2006, then won the Olympic giant slalom in Sestriere, Italy, four weeks later.

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