Yuzuru Hanyu set for competitive return at PyeongChang Olympics

Yuzuru Hanyu is the first man to enter an Olympics as the reigning gold medalist and reigning world champion since D...

Posted: Feb 14, 2018 11:48 PM
Updated: Feb 14, 2018 11:48 PM

Yuzuru Hanyu is the first man to enter an Olympics as the reigning gold medalist and reigning world champion since Dick Button did so in 1952.

It’s yet another impressive feat from Hanyu, who topped the field in 2014 to become the youngest Olympic gold medalist since Button.

Hanyu was also Japan’s first-ever men’s Olympic gold medalist. He has two world championship titles and was the first man to win four consecutive Grand Prix Final titles.

This Olympic season has been the most challenging for Hanyu yet. He opened his season at the Autumn Classic, where he earned silver behind his training mate and rival, Spain’s Javier Fernandez. At his first Grand Prix assignment in Russia, Hanyu finished second behind American rival Nathan Chen. Hanyu was set to compete on home ice at the Grand Prix in Japan but injured himself in warm-up, and doctors advised him to withdraw. He subsequently missed the Grand Prix Final and Japan’s national championships.

Later, it was revealed that Hanyu damaged ligaments in his right ankle and was off the ice for a month. He recuperated at his Toronto training base and returned to training and jumping in January.

He set his competitive return for the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics. The Japanese Skating Federation announced ahead of time that Hanyu would not participate in the team event. Hanyu had the most time to rest and – compared to some of his rivals – he already owns a solid foundation of Olympic experience.

His coach, two-time Olympic silver medalist Brian Orser, revealed limited information about Hanyu’s condition before arriving in PyeongChang.

“The important thing is that we have these little mini goals on his recovery,” Orser told NBCOlympics.com. “Starting two and a half months ago, we sat down and I said, ‘This is possible. You can get healed.’ We’ve taken it slow, but it’s been productive. It’s doable. Time was on our side, but we have to make every day count.”

Both before and after the injury to Hanyu’s ankle, legendary Russian figure skater Yevgeny Plushenko predicted Hanyu would successfully defend his gold medal in PyeongChang.

In October, Plushenko said to NBCOlympics.com that Hanyu simply was “the best.”

“He doesn’t need five quads, six quads,” Plushenko continued. “He need[s] three quadruples. Maybe two Sal[chows] and one toe loop. And that’s it.”

More recently, while Plushenko was a spectator at the European Championships in Moscow, Russia, he told the AP: “It’s going to be the most interesting Olympics in history. Yuzuru Hanyu, Nathan Chen, Shoma Uno, Javier Fernandez, our athletes. It’s going to be really interesting. And there are leaders who are injured, and whether they can get healthy in time. It's going to be very interesting. Lots of suspense, the Olympics are going to be crazy.”

The men’s short program is Thursday, February 15 in Primetime on NBC and NBCOlympics.com and the free skate is Friday, February 16 in Primetime on NBC and NBCOlympics.com.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 15523

Reported Deaths: 734
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Hinds100625
Lauderdale73862
Madison72423
Scott65012
Neshoba64639
Jones62928
Forrest56438
DeSoto5427
Rankin4398
Holmes42928
Leake42712
Copiah3124
Jackson30813
Attala29817
Yazoo2814
Newton2714
Leflore26431
Lincoln26329
Harrison2587
Monroe25725
Oktibbeha23912
Lamar2385
Lowndes2119
Pearl River20931
Wayne2041
Pike20311
Adams19915
Noxubee1866
Washington1787
Warren17310
Covington1652
Jasper1634
Bolivar16211
Lee1536
Smith15211
Kemper14411
Clarke14418
Lafayette1364
Chickasaw13512
Coahoma1254
Carroll11711
Winston1171
Marion1159
Clay1124
Claiborne1112
Lawrence1021
Simpson1010
Tate941
Grenada943
Yalobusha935
Hancock9111
Wilkinson889
Itawamba877
Montgomery851
Sunflower843
Union835
Marshall833
Jefferson Davis773
Tippah7311
Panola713
Webster692
Calhoun654
Amite641
Humphreys607
Walthall560
Tunica553
Prentiss533
Perry503
Choctaw432
Jefferson421
Pontotoc353
Quitman330
Tishomingo320
Stone300
Franklin292
Tallahatchie271
George251
Alcorn171
Benton150
Greene131
Sharkey70
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Confirmed Cases: 18018

Reported Deaths: 644
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Mobile2239116
Jefferson1837102
Montgomery171040
Tuscaloosa78315
Marshall6939
Franklin5567
Lee54833
Shelby51720
Tallapoosa42765
Butler41118
Chambers35525
Walker3542
Elmore3548
Madison3394
Baldwin2909
Morgan2801
Dallas2723
Etowah25711
DeKalb2483
Lowndes24612
Coffee2361
Sumter2247
Autauga2214
Houston2204
Bullock2095
Pike2030
Colbert1842
Hale1739
Russell1710
Marengo1706
Barbour1671
Lauderdale1642
Calhoun1603
Choctaw1538
Wilcox1487
Clarke1442
Cullman1430
Randolph1277
St. Clair1231
Marion12211
Pickens1164
Dale1150
Talladega1135
Limestone1060
Chilton1011
Greene944
Winston900
Macon824
Henry802
Covington801
Jackson782
Crenshaw753
Bibb751
Washington706
Escambia633
Blount621
Lawrence500
Geneva430
Conecuh411
Coosa401
Monroe402
Perry390
Cherokee373
Clay272
Lamar260
Fayette160
Cleburne151
Unassigned00
Tupelo
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 87° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 72°
Columbus
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 72°
Oxford
Clear
70° wxIcon
Hi: 85° Lo: 62°
Feels Like: 70°
Starkville
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 86° Lo: 63°
Feels Like: 72°
WTVA Radar
WTVA Temperatures
WTVA Severe Weather