Sasha Cohen

Sasha Cohen talks Shaun White, figure skating, college life

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Olympic silver medalist figure skater Sasha Cohen stopped by SB Nation for a 30-minute video chat published Friday. There was plenty to talk about.

Cohen, 28, discussed taking Russian at Columbia University, her Pomeranian, Pippa, and her business ventures, including Snoxx and Thuzio.

She also dished on skating. Topics ranged from “Blades of Glory” to tour life and even mentions of Tonya Harding and Midori Ito.

And, yes, Shaun White came up. Cohen was asked if she had met anybody notable outside of figure skating at the 2006 Olympics.

White, she said, bringing up the much-talked (and written-) about date request that the Olympic champion snowboarder made after winning gold at the Torino Games.

“I hung out with him at the end, the closing ceremonies, but by then there had been a lot of back and forth through USA Today and blah, blah, blah, before we even met,” she said. “And nothing more exciting to tell, unfortunately.”

Coincidentally, White is currently in Cohen’s city, New York, where he’s performing with his band, Bad Things.

Other tidbits from the wide-ranging interview:

• Asked if she ever suggested music for her programs but had it rejected, she replied: “Every Britney Spears song.”

• Her skating skills haven’t translated to roller blading. She falls a lot, even lost a wheel in SoHo. Not having a toe pick makes it tougher, she said.

• On figure skating bullies: “There’s definitely people that hog the music and don’t share and get in your way and purposefully don’t move out of your way (during practice).”

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Alysa Liu rallies to win Junior Grand Prix with another quadruple jump

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U.S. figure skating champion Alysa Liu landed a quadruple Lutz for a second straight Junior Grand Prix, rallying from fourth after the short program to win an event in Poland on Friday.

Liu, who in January became the youngest U.S. champion in history at age 13, won both of her starts in her first season on the Junior Grand Prix to become the first U.S. woman to qualify for the six-skater Junior Grand Prix Final since 2013 (Polina Edmunds and Karen Chen). The Final is held with the senior Grand Prix Final in Turin, Italy, in December.

She won Friday by 6.63 points by surpassing a pair of Russians, a rarity in this era. Her free skate is here.

Liu trailed by 4.03 points after doubling a planned triple loop in the short program. She was the lone skater in the field to attempt a triple Axel (landing three of them, including two in combination and one with a negative grade of execution) or a quad.

Liu tallied 138.99 points in the free skate and 203.10 overall. She ranks sixth in the world this season by best total scores among junior and senior skaters, though some top skaters have yet to compete.

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Rafaela Silva, first Brazilian gold medalist at Rio Olympics, claims innocence after positive drug test

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Rafaela Silva, the judoka who grew up in Rio’s most famously violent favela to become Brazil’s first gold medalist at the Rio Olympics, reportedly tested positive for a banned substance last month.

Silva tested positive for fenoterol, a substance that can be legal to treat asthma if an athlete has a therapeutic use exemption (TUE). Silva did not have a TUE before testing positive at the Pan American Games in August, according to Brazilian media.

A possible punishment has not been announced.

Silva claimed innocence at a news conference Friday afternoon, saying that a young child with whom she had bodily contact at her training location used the substance, and she plans to compete at a domestic event this weekend, according to O Globo.

Silva, 27, backed up her Rio Olympic 57kg title by taking bronze at the world championships later in August. If she is punished for the positive test, Silva could lose that bronze medal, though she said Friday that she had a clean drug test at worlds, according to O Globo.

Silva, from Rio’s Ciadade de Deus favela, has the Olympic rings tattooed on her right bicep with the inscription “God knows how much I’ve suffered and what I’ve done to get here.”

Brazil’s top female swimmer, Etiene Medeiros, reportedly tested positive for fenoterol in May 2016 but was cleared to compete at the Rio Olympics.

In PyeongChang, Slovenian hockey player Ziga Jeglic tested positive for fenoterol and was scratched before his nation’s last game before it was announced. Jeglic was suspended from the Games and, later, was suspended eight months.

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