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World Figure Skating Championships broadcast schedule

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Nathan Chen headlines the U.S. roster for the world figure skating championships in Milan, Italy, next week, with live coverage of every session between Olympic Channel: Home of Team USA and NBCSN.

Coverage will also stream on NBCSports.com/live and the NBC Sports app for subscribers.

Chen, the 18-year-old U.S. champion, looks to continue his rebound from disastrous short programs at the Olympics. He did record the best free skate, with five quadruple jumps, to rise from 17th to fifth in the individual event in PyeongChang.

He is a clear medal favorite in Milan, aided by the absence of Olympic gold and bronze medalists Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan and Javier Fernandez of Spain. Skaters often bow out of the worlds held one month after the Olympics due to exhaustion, off-ice opportunities or retirement.

Chen is joined in the men’s field by Olympic silver medalist Shoma Uno of Japan and fourth-place finisher Jin Boyang of China.

The other U.S. men are Vincent Zhou and Max Aaron, the latter replacing Adam Rippon.

PREVIEWS: MenWomen | Dance | Pairs | Nathan ChenMirai Nagasu | TV Schedule

U.S. champion Bradie Tennell and Mirai Nagasu, the only U.S. woman to land a triple Axel at the Olympics, face a field lacking 2017 World champion and Olympic silver medalist Yevgenia Medvedeva of Russia, who is injured. Gold medalist Alina Zagitova is the clear favorite.

In ice dance, U.S. champions Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue and two-time world medalists Madison Chock and Evan Bates could both make the podium. Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir and Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani, the Olympic gold and bronze medalists, are not in the world field.

Olympic champions Aljona Savchenko and Bruno Massot of Germany headline the pairs’ event that also includes U.S. champions Alexa Scimeca Knierim and Christopher Knierim.

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MORE: Best figure skating moments from PyeongChang

Day Program Time (ET) Network
Wednesday Women’s Short 6 a.m.-12 p.m. Olympic Channel (LIVE) | Skate Order
Women’s Short 12-2 p.m. NBCSN
Pairs’ Short 2-6 p.m. Olympic Channel (LIVE) | Skate Order
Thursday Men’s Short 5-11 a.m. Olympic Channel (LIVE) | Skate Order
Men’s Short 12-2 p.m. NBCSN
Pairs’ Free 3-5 p.m. NBCSN (LIVE) | Skate Order
Friday Short Dance 6-11 a.m. Olympic Channel (LIVE) | Skate Order
Short Dance 1:30-3:30 p.m. NBCSN
Women’s Free 3:30-5:30 p.m. NBCSN (LIVE) | Skate Order
Saturday Men’s Free 5-9 a.m. Olympic Channel (LIVE) | Skate Order
Free Dance 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m. Olympic Channel (LIVE) | Skate Order
Free Dance 12-2 p.m. NBCSN (LIVE)
Men’s Free 5-7 p.m. NBCSN
Sunday Exhibition 4:30-7 p.m. Olympic Channel
April 8 Recap 3-6 p.m. NBC

 

Justin Morneau nixes Olympic baseball qualifying return

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Justin Morneau, the 2006 AL MVP with the Minnesota Twins, was taken off Canada’s Olympic baseball qualifying roster before he would have played his first competitive game in more than two years.

Morneau, 38, experienced an unspecified setback in training and was replaced on Canada’s roster for next month’s Premier12. The global tournament marks the first opportunity for many world baseball powers to qualify for the sport’s return to the Olympics.

Morneau never played in the Olympics before baseball was cut from the Games after 2008; active MLB players have never competed in the Games. But he was on Canada’s roster at all four World Baseball Classics from 2006 through 2017.

At November’s Premier12, the top nation from North and South America will qualify for the Tokyo Olympics. Japan and Israel are already qualified. Those that do not qualify will get another chance next year.

Morneau could become the second Major League Baseball MVP to play Olympic baseball as a medal sport. The other was Jason Giambi, who made the U.S. team in 1992, the same summer he was drafted in the second round by the Oakland Athletics.

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MORE: Joe Girardi replaced as U.S. baseball manager by World Series champion

Kolohe Andino is first U.S. Olympic surfing qualifier; Kelly Slater faces last chance

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Kolohe Andino is the first American to qualify for surfing’s Olympic debut, which leaves one spot left for 47-year-old Kelly Slater to chase at the final contest of the season.

Andino, a 25-year-old Californian whose first name means “rascal” in Hawaiian, clinched his place in Tokyo on Friday at the penultimate stop on the World Surf League Championship Tour in Portugal. He is ranked fifth in the world, trailing a trio of Brazilians.

One more American man will join Andino on the Olympic team. It will be one of Slater, the 11-time world champion, John John Florence, the 2016 and 2017 World champion, and rising 22-year-old Hawaiian Seth Moniz.

Slater was handed a golden opportunity to qualify when Florence announced in early July that he tore an ACL for the second time in 13 months. Florence had won two of the first five events this season.

Slater has been chasing the sidelined Florence in the standings ever since. But it has not been easy.

Slater hasn’t made the quarterfinals in any of his last seven contests going into December’s finale — the prestigious Billabong Pipeline Masters on the North Shore of Oahu.

“Ninth place, to me, used to be a pretty awful result. I’m used to at least a quarterfinal on for most of my career,” he said in July, noting a back injury. “I’m not horrified by my results, but I’m also not surprised. Maybe other people are because everyone focuses on my age and that kind of thing. It’s not like I’m going to all of a sudden forget how to do this thing, you know?”

Slater, who won the Pipe Masters seven times between 1992 and 2013, must reach the quarterfinals at this year’s event to have any chance of passing Florence to qualify for the Olympics.

Complicating matters: Florence said in August it was his “goal to get better for Pipeline in case I have to come back and compete and gain points,” according to ESPN.com. If Florence does return for the December contest, and makes the quarterfinals, Slater could only pass him with a victory.

Moniz goes into the finale ranked one spot behind Slater, meaning he, too, can grab that second and final Olympic spot with a win or a runner-up.

Slater, who turns 48 on Feb. 11, would be the oldest U.S. Summer Olympic rookie competitor in a sport other than equestrian, sailing or shooting (or art competitions!) in the last 100 years, supplanting Martina Navratilova, according to the OlyMADMen.

MORE: Top U.S. surfer has links to Egg McMuffin, Guinness World Record holder

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