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Winter Olympics: What to watch/stream

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Ted Ligety features on NBC’s primetime coverage, as the skier goes back to the slopes for the men’s giant slalom. Ligety returns to PyeongChang as the defending champion, but will face stiff competition.

The man who’ll be leading that front is Marcel Hirscher, who entered PyeongChang as perhaps the best athlete never to have won an Olympic medal. That moniker changed when he won the super combined event just a couple of days ago. Now, bristling with confidence, the Austrian is poised to make a run for gold at Ligety’s expense.

Continue reading to find out what else is on tap in PyeongChang tonight.


Alpine Skiing

Hirscher and Ligety currently hold the most World Cup podium finishes and are the two men to beat on Saturday night. Matts Olsson of Sweden and Alexis Pinturault are also serious medal contenders.

Men’s Giant Slalom Run 1 Stream Live Here 8:15p.m. EST / 5:15p.m. PST

Men’s Giant Slalom Run 2 Stream Live Here 11:45p.m. EST / 8:45p.m. PST

Freestyle Skiing

The U.S. swept the podium in this event four years ago, but they face a couple of challenges this year. Gus Kenworthy, who won the silver, broke his thumb just a couple days ago. Though he’s still competing in the event, it will be a slight hindrance in his medal hopes.

A strong international field also awaits the men’s team, with Canada and Sweden bringing in particularly strong teams.

Full men’s freeski slopestyle preview here 

Men’s Freeski Slopestyle Qualification Stream Live Here 8:00p.m. EST / 5:00p.m. PST

Men’s Freeski Slopestyle Finals Stream Live Here 11:15p.m. EST / 8:15p.m. PST

Curling

The American men’s curling team have been performing above expectations so far, currently at 2-2. Only four teams qualify for the knockout phase, and with Sweden and Canada both perfect four games in, the U.S. are one of four teams at .500 right now. They’ve got a very winnable match against Japan, and a positive result could really put the Americans in a good chance to progress.

The U.S. women, too, have been a pleasant surprise this year. They’ll face down-on-their-luck Canada, who are astonishingly 0-3 in the tournament. With the defending gold medal champions’ hopes fading by the day, it’s a perfect opportunity for the U.S. women to make a go in the group stage.

Men’s Tournament

DEN vs. NOR Stream Live Here 7:05p.m. EST / 4:05p.m.PST

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

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

Women’s Tournament

USA vs. CAN Stream Live Here 5:00p.m. EST / 2:00p.m. PST

Hockey

Germany and Norway are both sitting on 0 wins so far. Neither were pegged to get positive results against group mates Sweden and Finland.

Men’s Tournament

GER vs. NOR Stream Live Here 10:10p.m. EST / 7:10p.m. PST

Women’s Tournament

Classification Game 1 COR vs. SUI Stream Live Here 10:10p.m. EST / 7:10p.m. PST

 

 

Jessie Diggins, inspired by Body Issue, shares eating disorder battle

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Jessie Diggins hopes to open a conversation about body image after appearing in ESPN the Magazine‘s “Body Issue.” The Olympic gold medalist detailed her own experience with an eating disorder as a teenager in what she called “the most important blog I’ll ever write.”

“When I was 18-19 years old, I had everything in the world going for me, but I struggled with confidence and didn’t love myself,” Diggins, now 26, wrote on her website. “I suffered from an eating disorder, and eventually sought help at a treatment center, checking in for a summer program that saved my life. So when I was approached about the ESPN issue, I thought “is this REALLY something I want to do? Will it bring back old memories? Will I be ok with everyone seeing my body exactly as it is?”

Diggins is remembered for winning the first U.S. Olympic cross-country skiing title with Kikkan Randall in PyeongChang (Here comes Diggins!). In the cross-country world, she’s also reputed for her bubbly presence, spreading glitter across her face and sharing it with fellow skiers before races.

She wants to be associated with much more.

“I want to be known not for going through an eating disorder, but for helping other women and men speak up when they need help and not feel judged for needing a friend to talk it through with,” Diggins wrote. “Statistically speaking, at least 6% of you reading this right now are struggling with disordered eating in some way. So to those of you for whom it feels like the end of the world, I can say this: it can, and it does, get better. I know, because I lived it. It will take more courage than most anything else in your life, but you can get better. And it’s worth it.”

Years before becoming a medal-winning athlete, Diggins checked into The Emily Program, a national leader for eating disorder treatment.

“It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life, but also the most important,” she wrote. “Because it saved my life, in every way that a life can be saved. I learned that I was struggling with this so much because I needed an outlet for stress, and that it was ok to feel a range of emotions – that I could survive feeling pressured, stressed, unhappy, sad, or angry as well as feeling happy-go-lucky.”

Diggins called posing for the Body Issue “a full-circle moment.” ESPN says the Body Issue celebrates every shape and size of athletes in artful fashion.

“[It’s] a chance for me to use a large stage to waltz right up to the microphone and share a message that I think is extremely important, and long overdue,” Diggins wrote. “We need to open up the conversation about body image, self confidence, and disordered eating. It should not be a shameful thing, or a taboo topic. It’s more prevalent than people think, and perhaps making help easier to find and less difficult to ask for could save some lives.”

MORE: Biathlon legend retires with four Olympic golds

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Darya Domracheva, triple Olympic gold medalist in Sochi, retires

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Darya Domracheva, a triple 2014 Olympic gold medalist and Belarus’ most decorated Olympian, has retired from biathlon at age 31.

Domracheva is leaving the sport because she could not continue in biathlon while raising daughter Xenia with husband Ole Einar Bjørndalen, the 13-time Olympic medalist biathlete for Norway.

“All the time after the season, I was trying to find a compromise which would allow me to raise a child and combine with a professional career at the same time,” Domracheva said, according to the International Biathlon Union (IBU). “Unfortunately I did not find an optimal solution which would allow me to combine those two important life parts. This decision is well weighted and very tough, but I finish my sports career.”

Domracheva was one of the biggest stars of the 2014 Sochi Winter Games as the only athlete to claim three individual gold medals, four years after being put on a Belarus postage stamp for earning an individual bronze. Domracheva could have competed for Russia, having been born in Minsk but raised in the remote western Siberia oil boom town of Nyagan, the birthplace of Maria Sharapova.

She became Belarus’ first female Olympic champion, saying she was “the hope of” Belarus, then was awarded the nation’s highest civilian honor, “Hero of Belarus.”

After winning her only World Cup overall title in 2015, Domracheva missed the 2015-16 campaign with glandular fever, then in April 2016 announced she and Bjørndalen were in a relationship and having a child.

Domracheva returned to take a silver medal at the 2017 World Championships, then entered PyeongChang ranked fifth in the world. Domracheva struggled early in PyeongChang with finishes of ninth, 37th and 27th before earning mass start silver and relay gold.

Her six career Olympic medals are two more than anybody else from Belarus, and her four golds are double anybody else’s total from her country.

Belarus has only competed independently since the 1994 Lillehammer Games, having previously been part of the Soviet Union. Its top athletes who competed under other flags included gymnasts Olga Korbut (six medals, four golds for the Soviets) and Vitaly Scherbo (six golds in 1992 for the Unified Team; four bronzes in 1996 for Belarus).

NBC Olympic Research contributed to this report.

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