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Laurie Hernandez undecided on competing in 2017

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NEW YORK — Unlike Simone Biles and Aly RaismanLaurie Hernandez does not know if she’ll be competing in 2017.

Hernandez is about to embark on a “Dancing with the Stars” tour, which runs into mid-February and means she won’t be able to return for the biggest event of the first half of 2017, the American Cup on March 4 in her home state of New Jersey.

“It is so exciting to be able to do the Olympics and be able to do all the activities afterwards, but at the same time gymnastics is still a sport that’s in my heart,” Hernandez said at the CNN Heroes event in Manhattan on Sunday night.

Hernandez shrugged when asked if she plans to compete at the P&G Championships from Aug. 17-20 in Anaheim, Calif.

“I do plan on coming back, just because I love the sport dearly, but at the same time I am taking it day by day,” she said.

If Hernandez competes in 2017, she would instantly become a threat for the world all-around title, to be contested in early fall in Montreal. Hernandez missed out on the chance to compete in the all-around at the Rio Olympics, as Biles, Raisman and Gabby Douglas got the three U.S. spots in qualifying.

“I’ve never been to worlds, but at the same time, I know that aside from the Olympics, worlds is the biggest gymnastics competition,” said Hernandez, who won team gold and balance beam silver in Rio as the youngest member of the U.S. team at age 16. “So, I feel like, if I were able to medal in that competition, in the all-around, that would mean the world to me.”

In the last three months, Olympic all-around gold and silver medalists Biles and Raisman said they would take all of 2017 off.

Douglas, the 2012 Olympic all-around champion, hasn’t said if or when she will return to competition.

Fellow Olympic and/or world championships team members Madison KocianMaggie Nichols and MyKayla Skinner are all starting NCAA careers and, at least temporarily, leaving elite gymnastics behind.

Ragan Smith was the only woman who finished in the top 11 in the Olympic Trials all-around who attended a recent national team camp.

Smith placed fifth at Olympic Trials and was one of three Olympic team alternates.

MORE: Simone Biles will not follow Aimee Boorman to Florida

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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