Russia holds off U.S. for gold in men’s 5000m short track relay

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Minutes after winning the men’s 500m, Victor Ahn captured his third gold medal of the Sochi Olympics (and the sixth of his career) as the anchor of the winning Russian team in the men’s 5000m short track relay.

Ahn, Semen Elistratov, Vladimir Grigorev, and Ruslan Zakharov set an Olympic record time of 6:42.100, with Ahn beating Team USA anchor J.R. Celski by nearly three-tenths of a second.

With the silver from the team of Celski, Chris Creveling, Jordan Malone and Eddy Alvarez, the U.S. short track skaters – and U.S. Speedskating as a whole – were able to earn a Sochi medal in the final opportunity to do so.

Chris Creveling, who started the relay for the Americans and avoided a crash between the Chinese and Dutch skaters in the very first corner, moved to the lead ahead of Russia with 15 laps to go. But with seven laps left, Russia moved ahead to stay.

MORE: South Korea’s Park Seung-Hi wins women’s short track 1000m

1. Russia (Ahn/Elistratov/Grigorev/Zakharov), 6:42.100 – OR

2. United States (Celski/Alvarez/Creveling/Malone), 6:42.371
3. China (Dequan/Tianyu/Jingnan/Dajing), 6:48.341

4. Netherlands (Breeuwsma/Kerstholt/Knegt/Van Der Wart), 6:49.149
5. Kazakhstan (Azhgaliyev/Bekzhanov/Nikisha/Zhumagaziyev), 6:54.630

Boglarka Kapas, world champion swimmer, tests positive for coronavirus

Boglarka Kapas
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Boglarka Kapas, the Hungarian swimmer and world 200m butterfly champion, said she tested positive for the coronavirus.

“I don’t have any symptoms yet, and that’s why it’s important for you to know that even if you feel healthy you can spread the virus,” was posted on her social media. “Please be careful, stay at home and stay healthy.”

Nine total members of the Hungarian national team — including swimmers and staff — have tested positive, according to the federation.

Kapas said her first test was negative but a second test showed she had the virus. She was staying in quarantine at home for two weeks.

Kapas, 26, won the 200m fly at last summer’s world championships by passing Americans Hali Flickinger and Katie Drabot in the last 25 meters. She clocked 2:06.78 to prevail by .17 of a second.

Kapas also took bronze in the Rio Olympic 800m freestyle won by Katie Ledecky.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

NHL players: Marie-Philip Poulin is world’s best female hockey player

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The U.S. may have the world’s best women’s hockey team, but NHL players believe Canadian Marie-Philip Poulin is the world’s best player.

Poulin received the most votes out of 496 responses in the 2019-20 NHLPA Player Poll, conducted before the season was suspended. The tally:

Poulin: 39.92%
Hilary Knight (USA): 36.29%
Kendall Coyne Schofield (USA): 15.52%
Emily Pfalzer Matheson (USA): 1.41%
Other: 6.85%

Last year, Knight received the highest percentage of votes from 203 NHL players (27.59), edging Poulin (24.14) with Amanda Kessel third (12.81) and Coyne Schofield and Pfalzer Matheson each receiving 5.91 percent.

Why were Poulin and Knight swapped this year? Perhaps Poulin’s Canadian team winning the debut of the NHL All-Star Skills Competition women’s 3-on-3 game on Jan. 24, even though Knight scored and Poulin did not.

Poulin, now 29, scored both goals in the 2010 Olympic final and the game-tying and -winning goals in the 2014 Olympic final. Even before her Olympic debut at age 18, the daughter of Quebec hospital workers was dubbed “the female Sidney Crosby.”

Knight, 30, led last April’s world championship tournament with seven goals as the U.S. won a fifth straight title. Poulin played 4 minutes, 44 seconds, total at the tournament, missing time with a knee injury.

This spring’s tournament, which was to start Tuesday, was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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