Saturday, February 19, 2022
A slow night, unless you're a German sled.
What are the Krauts putting in the water of their sledding teams?
- One more time at the HOUSE OF SPEED! It's heat three of the Two-Woman Bobsled. And someone at NBC must have seen my post yesterday about identifying the other person in the sleds. Elana Meyers Taylor shares a sled with Sylvia Hoffman, who can squat 317 pounds. That's a lot. In the other US sled, Kaysha Love is the brakewoman for Kailie Humpries. After heat three, Taylor's sled is in third place, Humphries' is in fifth.
- The Canadian team flipped their sled in heat three, but did it near the finish line, so amazingly they didn't lose position. They almost flipped again in the fourth heat.
- Humphries is too far behind to medal, but Elana has a great fourth run and has guaranteed herself at least third place. Maybe some Germans will crash and get her something better. Nope. Germans finish one-two, but Taylor gets the bronze!
- To the rink we go, for Pairs Figure Skating. Americans Ashley Cain-Gribble and Timothy LeDuc go first. They were in seventh place going into their long program and after a few falls, it's unlikely they'll move up.
- The other American team, Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier, started their program in sixth. They'll be skating to a somber version of Coldplay's "Fix You." Again with the somber covers. But they skate well and move temporarily into first place.
- Speaking of cover songs, the group that sings the version of "House of the Rising Sun" that Knierim and Frazier skated to last night is now suing NBC, U.S. Figure Skating, and the skaters themselves for using their song without licensing it. Maybe it's just me, but if my little-known cover song had suddenly gotten worldwide recognition, I don't think my first reaction would be to sue the people who had caused that recognition.
- We are LIVE on the mountain for Mixed Team Parallel slalom race. Each team has two women and two men, and they race side-by-side in match play. The US beats Italy in their quarterfinal. Then the Swiss beat the Germans. Oh wait! They don't! Dan Hicks says the scoreboard says Switzerland won, but the Germans are advancing. And that's all he said. Why, Dan? Don't you think an explanation would be a good thing here?
- The US loses their semi-final to Germany, but could still pick up a bronze if they win their next match. This is Mikaela Shiffrin's only chance to medal at these Olympics. Who would have thought before the games that this would be her sole medal opportunity? But no! The US ties Norway 2-2 , but the tiebreaker goes the Norwegian's way. So no medals for Shiffrin in Beijing.
- Back to pre-recorded pairs skating. The Russian Crime Syndicate team of Boikova and Kozlovsky are skating to "Malagueña," because the Russians believe upbeat music makes for better scores. They had a few bobbles and a fall, but they are still moving into first place for now.
- The last three skating pairs are the real medal contenders. First up are Mishina and Gallyamov from the RCS. They stumble a few times. Now they move into first. They probably won't be there long.
- More from the country of cheaters. Russians Tarasova and Morozov pull out the somber music. What are they thinking? Do they not want to win? Their skating is fine. They'll probably move into first place, but their music is going to put me to sleep. When you're trying to be known as the best skaters in the world, you shouldn't pick music that makes the judges think, "This is boring." They do indeed move into first place by two points. That won't be enough.
- Last up are the soon-to-be-gold medal winners, China's Sui Wenjing and Han Cong. Assuming they don't fall, of course. They pick "Bridge Over Troubled Water" for their music. Not the Simon and Garfunkel version, but an even more somber cover by John Legend. Do they not want to win? They make a couple of little mistakes, but it shouldn't be enough to keep them from winning. While we're waiting for the scores to come in, you know what music someone should skate to next Olympics? "Star Wars." It's big, bombastic… the crowd would love it. Listen to me, skating coaches! I'm guaranteeing you a gold medal! Anyway, Sui and Han win gold by six tenths of a point.
- We end the night as we started, at the HOUSE OF SPEED! But now we are LIVE for the last heat of the Four-Man Bobsled. Who's leading? Is it the Germans? It's probably the Germans. The first two sleds we see are from the Russian Crime Syndicate, but there are six sleds after them, so none of these guys are likely to medal.
- There are four sleds left. Three of them are German. Told you! Can they sweep? Only the Canadian sled can prevent it. And they do by six one-hundreths of a second! There are still two German sleds left to come, but Canada can do no worse than third. And third it is, as Germany finishes one-two. So, out of 10 gold medals in sliding events these Olympics, Germany has won nine of them. They won 16 out of the total 30. That's pretty impressive.
- Behind the scenes fluff! Mike shows us a couple of people who have been working on NBC's television production crews since the Seoul Olympics. That's a long time. Even longer than the Rockwood Olympic Watch has been in existence. Yet both they and we keep coming back for more. It gets in your blood, I guess.
The events are over! The only thing left to do now is wrap it all up. Join us tomorrow when we see what oddities the Beijing Olympic committee have dreamed up for us in the Closing Ceremonies. See you then!
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