mikaela shiffrin

Mikaela Shiffrin
AP

Mikaela Shiffrin plans to return next week

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Mikaela Shiffrin plans to race for the first time in two months at the next World Cup slalom in Crans-Montana, Switzerland, next Monday.

Shiffrin, 20 and the reigning Olympic, World and World Cup slalom champion, has been out since suffering a right MCL tear and a bone fracture in a Dec. 12 warm-up crash.

”I am lucky that I hurt two of the things in my knee that can heal on their own really well,” Shiffrin, who returned to skiing Jan. 30, said in a press release. “If I had hurt my ACL or meniscus and needed surgery, I think this would have been a lot more difficult for me. But I have thought about my knee like a big cut on my leg or something.”

Her timetable for a return this season has shifted in the last eight weeks.

The rescheduling of a canceled Jan. 31 slalom for next Monday changed her previous plans to return the final weekend of February.

“Our goal is to have her be really close to 100 percent, if not 100 percent [before competing],” said Shiffrin’s mother, Eileen, in an earlier Denver Post report. “We’ve heard all these horror stories about athletes who went back too soon and then sustained injuries that did end their careers.”

The World Cup season concludes March 20. There are four slaloms left on the calendar, and Shiffrin trails slalom standings leader Frida Hansdotter by 305 points.

A winner receives 100 points per victory, so Shiffrin could take her fourth straight World Cup season title, but it would all but require her to win all four remaining slaloms and for Hansdotter (and others) to struggle.

MORE: Lindsey Vonn’s winning streak snapped

Mikaela Shiffrin returns to skiing, expects to race in one month

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Mikaela Shiffrin returned to skiing on Saturday and plans to race again the final weekend of February, according to the Denver Post.

“No pain, no swelling,” Shiffrin said, according to the report.

Shiffrin, 20 and the reigning Olympic, World and World Cup slalom champion, has been out since suffering a right MCL tear and a bone fracture in a Dec. 12 warm-up crash.

Her timetable for a return this season has shifted in the last seven weeks, but now the plan is to come back for a super-G and a super combined in Andorra on Feb. 27-28. The World Cup season ends three weeks later.

“Our goal is to have her be really close to 100 percent, if not 100 percent [before competing],” said Shiffrin’s mother, Eileen, according to the report. “We’ve heard all these horror stories about athletes who went back too soon and then sustained injuries that did end their careers.”

Shiffrin is all but eliminated from being able to capture a fourth straight World Cup slalom season title because of her lengthy absence.

VIDEO: Lindsey Vonn nearly takes out course worker in crash

*Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly stated that Shiffrin is mathematically eliminated from the World Cup slalom season title. She is only mathematically eliminated if today’s canceled slalom in Maribor, Slovenia, is not rescheduled.

Mikaela Shiffrin’s comeback delayed

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Mikaela Shiffrin is not expected to return to the Alpine skiing World Cup before the penultimate technical races of the season in Jasna, Slovakia, from March 5-6 after recent medical tests revealed she suffered a bone fracture and not just a bruise, in addition to her right MCL tear, in a Dec. 12 crash.

“Due to the small fracture she had she will go on the safe side and let that heal fully before going on snow,” her agent said in an email Monday, confirming Austrian reports. “Jasna is very possible.”

If she is out until March, Shiffrin has no chance of winning a fourth straight World Cup season slalom title.

Shiffrin, 20 and the youngest Olympic slalom champion, suffered the right knee injury in a Dec. 12 warm-up crash.

Shiffrin, who did not require surgery, said three days after the crash that a return this season was “unlikely,” according to the Denver Post.

Two weeks ago, buoyed by promising rehab, Shiffrin said she expected to race again this season and that her original timetable given to her in mid-December was a four-to-12-week absence.

The World Cup slalom standings leader, Frida Hansdotter of Sweden, is 305 points ahead of Shiffrin through seven of 11 scheduled races.

Winners receive 100 points per race, so Shiffrin is mathetmatically eliminated from contention for the season title if she will miss the next two slaloms.

MORE: Lindsey Vonn halfway to overall wins record in comeback