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Winter Olympics: What to watch/stream

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The U.S. women’s hockey team has waited four years for this moment as they take on Canada in the second game of group play. Minus that slight hiccup against Finland in the final six seconds of the first intermission earlier this week, the American women have looked very strong. So, too, have Canada. It’s clear that these two teams are neck-and-neck, and they leave a sizeable gap between themselves and third best.

Sure, it’s not the gold medal match – yet. But this game will set the tone for the rest of the tournament for these two teams Puck drop is at 10:10p.m. EST / 7:10p.m. PST.

Skeleton, alpine skiing, and figure skating all feature in NBC’s primetime coverage tonight. After several delays, athletes in the oft-delayed alpine skiing event will hope to finally take to the slopes.

Hockey

Both the USA and Canada have looked so strong entering tonight, sweeping past both Finland and Olympic Athletes from Russia. This isn’t the gold medal match, but do expect a much more physical game tonight as these rivals battle it out once again.

There’s more than just one hockey game on tonight, though, as Finland and Germany begin their campaigns in the men’s competition. Finland have reached the podium in the past three Olympic games and, though not fielding quite as strong a team as in years past, do have the quality to see off Germany fairly comfortably.

Women’s Tournament

USA vs. CAN Stream Live Here 10:10p.m. EST / 7:10p.m. PST

Men’s Tournament

FIN vs. GER Stream Live Here 10:10p.m. EST / 7:10p.m. PST

Figure Skating

The pairs figure skating program concludes with the free skating event. Alexa Scimeca Knierim and Chris Knierim currently sit in 14th position after the first round. Though they likely won’t medal, a dramatic four-way fight for gold. China, OAR, Canada, and Germany currently hold the top four spots.

Click here for a full recap of the first round

Pairs Free Program Stream Live Here 8:30p.m. EST / 5:30p.m. PST

Alpine Skiing

Wind permitting, Mikaela Shiffrin will finally get back on her skis tonight as she looks to defend her Olympic gold medal in the women’s giant slalom. Tessa Worley and Viktoria Wesenberg, who are occupy the top two standings in the World Cup rankings, will be challenging the American for the top spot on the podium.

Bryce Bennett, meanwhile, will be leading the men’s contingent in the downhill event.

Women’s Giant Slalom Run 1 Stream Live Here 8:00p.m. EST / 5:00p.m. PST

Women’s Giant Slalom Run 2 Stream Live Here 11:45p.m. EST / 5:00p.m. PST

Men’s Downhill Stream Live Here 9:30p.m. EST / 6:30p.m. PST

Snowboard Cross

After some incredible performances on the slopestyle and halfpipe, it’s time for the snowboarding competition to take several different directions in the cross. Similar to cross country skiing, snowboarders line up in heats to race down a course – with “x” amount of snowboarders advancing out of each heat.

Following the seeding qualification, the tournament continues into late night with the quarterfinals, semifinals, and finals. Pierre Vaultier is the defending Olympic gold medalist. Team USA’s Alex Deibold finished third in 2014.

Men’s qualification Stream Live Here 9:00p.m.. EST / 6:00p.m. PST

Curling

A very tough match awaits the USA tonight as they challenge Great Britain. The Britons a serious medal contenders and, seeing as how Canada is the standard by which all other teams should be judged, should easily take care of the Americans. If Great Britain is capable of pushing Canada, then the Americans probably won’t amount much to a challenge.

CHN vs. OAR Stream Live Here 7:05p.m. EST / 4:05p.m. PST

GBR vs. USA Stream Live Here 7:05p.m. EST / 4:05p.m. PST

DEN vs. JPN Stream Live Here 7:05p.m. EST / 4:05p.m. PST

CAN vs. KOR Stream Live Here 7:05p.m. EST / 4:05p.m. PST

Skeleton

Team USA’s Matt Antoine is back, looking to at least equal his bronze medal performance in 2014. Since then, Latvia’s Tomass Dukurs has emerged as the man to beat. The Latvian just missed out on a medal in 2014, but he’s got 50 World Cup titles to his name and is coming into the tournament fourth in the World Cup rankings. Axel Jungk will be making a serious Olympic gold challenge.

South Korea has got a hopeful contending for a gold medal as well. Yun Sung-Bin has seven World Cup titles to his pedigree, and should do much better than his 16th finish in Sochi.

Men’s Runs 1 and 2 Stream Live Here 8:00p.m. EST / 5:00p.m. PST

 

USA Gymnastics settles sex abuse lawsuit

USA Gymnastics
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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — USA Gymnastics has reached a confidential settlement in a Georgia lawsuit that spurred a newspaper investigation into the organization’s practices for reporting child abuse.

A former gymnast filed the lawsuit against USA Gymnastics in 2013, alleging that the organization that trains Olympians received at least four warnings about coach William McCabe, who videotaped her in various states of undress.

The lawsuit revealed that USA Gymnastics wouldn’t forward child sex abuse allegations to authorities unless they were in writing and signed by a victim or a victim’s parent.

A judge in Effingham County, Georgia, dismissed the lawsuit on April 12, according to court records. USA Gymnastics admits no wrongdoing or liability in the settlement, said W. Brian Cornwell of Cornwell & Stevens LLP, the gymnast’s lawyer.

Both parties have declined to comment on the settlement.

“We want to make it clear that the settlement does not prevent the former gymnast from speaking publicly about her experiences,” USA Gymnastics said in a statement Thursday.

McCabe pleaded guilty in Georgia in 2006 to federal charges of sexual exploitation of children and making false statements. He’s serving a 30-year prison sentence.

The suit sparked The Indianapolis Star’s investigation of USA Gymnastics, which exposed abuse by Larry Nassar, a former Michigan State University sports doctor, and spurred the resignations of the organization’s president and board.

Nassar, 54, pleaded guilty to molesting patients and possessing child pornography. He was sentenced this year to prison terms that will keep him locked up for life after roughly 200 women gave statements against him in two courtrooms over 10 days.

USA Gymnastics faces additional lawsuits from women who say Nassar sexually abused them. The suits allege the organization was negligent, fraudulent and intentionally inflicted emotional distress by failing to warn or protect athletes from Nassar’s abuse. The organization has denied the allegations and wants the lawsuits dismissed.

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Max Aaron retires from figure skating

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Max Aaron, a national champion and Skate America winner, has retired from competitive figure skating.

Aaron, 26, ends his career as the only Skate America men’s winner not to compete in an Olympics. He is one of three U.S. men’s champions in the last 55 years not to compete in an Olympics, along with Ryan Bradley and Rudy Galindo.

“Of course, becoming an Olympian, or having an Olympic medal would have been great to say, ride off on my white horse, but having the ability to say that I have no regrets in my entire career of figure skating, for me that is my gold medal,” Aaron said Thursday night.

Aaron, a former top USA Hockey developmental player, also figure skated growing up to help with his skating skills as one of the smaller players on his team.

He stopped playing hockey at 16 due to a broken vertebra but continued full-time with figure skating. By 2012, Aaron considered quitting figure skating after placing eighth at nationals (one year after being U.S. junior champion) and being told he wasn’t artistic enough.

But Aaron kept with it and completed a remarkable bounce back the next year, winning the U.S. title and setting himself up as a favorite to make the 2014 Olympic team.

But Aaron ended up third at the 2014 U.S. Championships. The two Sochi Olympic spots went to Jeremy Abbott and Jason Brown.

Aaron continued, becoming the first U.S. man to win Skate America in six years in 2015 and topping the short program at the 2016 U.S. Championships before ultimately finishing second to Adam Rippon.

Aaron plummeted to ninth at the 2017 U.S. Championships, coming back from offseason hernia surgery, but returned to the Olympic team radar last fall with a personal-best free skate at Cup of China, including three landed quadruple jumps. He went into the 2018 U.S. Championships ranking third among American men for the season.

But Aaron was again ninth at nationals, missing the Olympic team. He was called on to compete at last month’s world championships as the third alternate after Rippon, Ross Miner and Brown all passed.

Aaron had stopped skating and instead was training for a triathlon. He went to worlds in Milan on two weeks of training and finished 11th, a result that helped the U.S. keep three men’s spots for 2019 Worlds. Nathan Chen won the world title, but Vincent Zhou was 14th. The U.S. needed its second man to be 12th or better to go along with Chen’s first place to ensure three spots next year. Aaron reportedly said at worlds that it may have been his last competition.

Aaron said he’s started a job with Merrill Lynch.

“It’s really been a great ride. I have no regrets,” he said. “That’s one thing that I always told myself, in sport, in life, I want to have no regrets, and I can honestly say, with the help from my coaches and friends, that I have no regrets in the sport.”

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