Sports

The Edge
9:56 am
Fri February 14, 2014

Sochi Games 'Better Than Expected'; Swiss Wins Super Combined

Switzerland's Sandro Viletta, skiing in the slalom portion of the men's super combined, took home the gold.
Alessandro Trovati AP

About halfway into the games, the International Olympic Committee is giving Sochi a "better than expected" report card. Officials say the athletes are happy, and the mood is festive.

IOC Executive Director Gilbert Felli said he had doubts about how the Olympics might turn out early on, alluding to the terrorist threats that marked the start of the games.

"We had a big concern that we would have nobody in this [Olympic] park," Felli said in a statement.

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Sports
4:03 am
Fri February 14, 2014

NBA Teams Take A Break For The All-Star Game

Originally published on Fri February 14, 2014 6:18 am

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

There have actually been some sports going on in the world that don't require a triple axel or a backside air 1080 - although sometimes it seems like Lebron James nails both on the basketball court. James and his NBA brethren have been hard at work during the Winter Olympics, but now they're taking their annual break for the All-Star game.

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Sports
4:03 am
Fri February 14, 2014

Men's Olympic Figure Skating Moves To Free Program

Originally published on Fri February 14, 2014 6:23 am

Some unfortunate falls have changed the outlook for men's figure skating. Japan and Canada are in the lead. And, Russian star Evgeni Plushenko withdrew from the competition because of a back problem.

The Edge
5:44 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

In Men's Figure Skating, U.S. Pins Hopes On A New Class

Jason Brown skated to Prince during his short program Thursday.
Vadim Ghirda AP

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 6:58 pm

What's the hardest sport at the Winter Games — biathlon, aerial skiing, snowboarding, or high-flying slopestyle?

Jeremy Abbott thought it was one of those until an Olympic official told him otherwise. "Hands down," he was told, "absolutely, figure skating is the hardest."

Abbott may not completely agree, but he says it's the rare affirmation he's gotten as a male figure skater.

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Sports
3:22 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

What's Important In Sochi? Depends Where You Ask

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 6:58 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

From NPR News, this is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED. I'm Robert Siegel.

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

And I'm Melissa Block.

Eighty-eight countries have sent athletes to the Sochi Winter Olympics - from Albania to Zimbabwe. We're going to hear now from three reporters in Sochi from three different countries, starting with the Netherlands. They cheer their athletes on this way.

EDWIN PAQUES: Hop-hop-hop, we always say. (Foreign language spoken)

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Sports
3:22 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Between U.S. And Russian Hockey, A Different Kind Of Cold War

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 6:58 pm

Transcript

ROBERT SIEGEL, HOST:

This is ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News.

For a lot of Russians, the true start of the Olympics was today. Team Russia took the ice in men's hockey. At the very same time, Team USA also had their very first game. We sent a reporter to each game to see how the two rivals stack up against each other and they sent his report.

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The Salt
1:22 pm
Thu February 13, 2014

Why Some Olympians Load Up On Salad Instead Of Pasta

Peter Frenette of the United States jumps during training for the Men's Normal Hill Individual ahead of the start of the Sochi Games.
Lars Baron Getty Images

Originally published on Tue February 18, 2014 10:53 am

When we imagine Olympic athletes at the table before the most important competition of their lives, we might picture a huge plate of pasta, with Gatorade to wash it down and a well-deserved ice cream sundae for dessert.

Turns out, they might be preparing with a salad, a glass of beet juice and some almonds.

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The Edge
11:12 am
Thu February 13, 2014

Russian Star Plushenko Withdraws From Men's Skating

Evgeni Plushenko of Russia withdrew from the Sochi Olympics on Thursday, reportedly because of a recurring problem with his back.
Ivan Sekretarev AP

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 1:38 pm

Russian figure skater Evgeni Plushenko, a star who hoped to compete one more time before his adoring home nation fans, pulled himself from the games on Thursday.

There's word that he may be headed into retirement because of a recurring back problem.

USA Today describes what happened at Sochi's Iceberg Palace:

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The Edge
6:22 am
Thu February 13, 2014

'Stomping' And 'Shredding The Gnar' — A Brief Slopestyle Glossary

Joss Christensen of the U.S. won gold in the men's ski slopestyle final Thursday at the Rosa Khutor Extreme Park in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia.
Sergei Grits AP

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 7:53 am

Slopestyle, one of four new events at this year's Olympics, is already a bona fide hit. It might get covered by the likes of Sports Illustrated, but it's also in Entertainment Weekly. When superstar snowboarder Shaun White dropped out of the slopestyle event at the last minute, it only drew more attention to the sport.

Slopestyle is sort of like a big skate park in the snow, a downhill course with rails and jumps. It can be performed on skis or on a snowboard.

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Sports
4:09 am
Thu February 13, 2014

In Front Of A Home Crowd, Russia Has Hockey History On Its Mind

Russia forward Alexander Ovechkin steps out onto the ice Thursday before a match against Slovenia. The Russians won 5-2. On Saturday, they'll meet Team USA.
Mark Humphrey AP

Originally published on Thu February 13, 2014 2:07 pm

There is a weird contradiction in Olympic hockey: On one hand, these professional players from the NHL arrive in a small town like movie stars.

They show up a week late, trailed by TV cameras and Russians begging for autographs.

And then they have to go back to basics. Early Thursday, members of Team USA were on the ice, doing the kind of simple drills that you'd see in a peewee hockey league.

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