Lindsey Vonn skis abridged downhill after ‘rib kind of popped out’

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Wearing bib #1, Lindsey Vonn was preparing to ski what amounted to a training run on an abbreviated downhill course in the women’s Alpine Super combined today. But minutes before her start, Vonn’s body decided to remind her what she was up against.

“Two or three minutes before in the starting gate, my rib kind of popped out,” Vonn told NBC Sports’ Andrea Joyce after her run. “I definitely did not push hard out of the start, and the upper part [of the course] was kind of weird.

“In general, I think the bottom was really good and I’m glad I was able to get back out there today.”

Vonn skied cleanly, even if she did take her foot off the gas. With thick snowflakes filling the air in Are, making visibility a concern, the start of the downhill portion of the women’s combined was postponed 30 minutes and the skiers were relocated to the Super-G start house, instead of the downhill drop-in which sits above the timber line.

It was the first time Vonn was back on the Swedish snow since her scary Super-G crash on Tuesday. But proudly baring her black eye, Vonn fought through the pain.

“Everything is so stiff,” Vonn said. “My right side, I landed on my arm and my face, and my left side I ran into the fence. I got in the hot tub a bit, got a lot of massage work.

“Thankfully my legs feel decent, minus my knees.”

Vonn, who will not ski the slalom portion of the Alpine Super combined, skied the 8th fastest time of the two-race event.

Watch Vonn ski the final race of her career on Sunday morning at 6:25 a.m. ET on NBCSN and streaming on the NBC Sports app. You can also see the race live with the NBC Sports Gold Snow Pass.

Breanna Stewart to miss entire WNBA season with Achilles injury

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Breanna Stewart, the world’s top female basketball player and one of the most dominant athletes of 2018, is expected to miss the entire upcoming WNBA season after rupturing an Achilles playing in Europe on Sunday, according to the Seattle Storm.

“The situation is still a shock to me,” was posted on Stewart’s social media. “I’m feeling every emotion possible at this point but just know that the bounce back will be real and I’ll be back better than ever.”

Stewart, 24, skyrocketed in this Olympic cycle.

The Storm’s franchise player went from playing the second-fewest minutes on the 2016 Olympic team as its youngest player to leading the U.S. per game in points (16.3) and minutes (27) at the 2018 World Championship tournament.

Stewart earned MVP honors at worlds, matching her WNBA season and Finals honors. She became the first player to earn all three MVPs in one year.

Stewart is still expected to be in play for the 2020 Olympic team, given the Storm expect her to make a full recovery by the start of the following WNBA season next spring.

Tamika Catchings made the 2008 Olympic team after tearing her right Achilles in September 2007.

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Caster Semenya leads Olympians in Time 100; streak hits 16 years

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An Olympian has made the Time 100 Most Influential list every year since its annual inception in 2004. South African runner Caster Semenya, soccer players Alex Morgan and Mo Salah and LeBron James kept the streak going in 2019.

It’s the fourth appearance for James (2005, 2013, 2017), extending his record for an athlete, and the first for Semenya, Morgan and Salah. Semenya made it in the “icons” category, while the other three are “titans.”

Two-time Olympic 400m hurdles champion Edwin Moses penned an essay about the two-time Olympic 800m champion Semenya, who is fighting a legal battle with the IAAF over a potential rule change limiting women’s testosterone levels in her events. If the rule goes into effect, Semenya’s dominance (three years undefeated at 800m) is expected to vanish.

“Caster Semenya has taught us that sex isn’t always binary, and caused us to question the justness of distributing societal benefits according to “male” and “female” classifications,” Moses wrote. “Ultimately, this incredibly difficult issue is a political one for sport to resolve. But however it is addressed, Semenya will have already made a singular historical contribution to our understanding of biological sex.”

Here are Olympians and Paralympians on past Time 100 lists, counting only athletes who competed in the Games before being listed:

2018 — Kevin Durant, Roger Federer, Chloe Kim, Adam Rippon
2017 — Simone Biles, LeBron James, Neymar
2016 — Usain BoltCaitlyn JennerKatie LedeckySania MirzaRonda Rousey
2015 — Abby Wambach
2014 — Cristiano Ronaldo, Serena Williams
2013 — LeBron James, Li Na, Lindsey Vonn
2012 — Novak DjokovicLionel MessiOscar Pistorius
2011 — Lionel Messi
2010 — Yuna KimSerena Williams
2009 — Rafael Nadal
2008 — Andre Agassi, Lance Armstrong, Oscar Pistorius
2007 — Roger FedererChien Ming-Wang
2006 — Joey CheekSteve Nash
2005 — LeBron James
2004 — Lance Armstrong, Paula Radcliffe, Yao Ming
2000 (20th Century) — Muhammad Ali

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