Winter Olympics 2014: 10 Things We Learned From the Sochi Games
Poker Faces Are Overrated
Someone should break the news to McKayla Maroney: She's been dethroned as the Most Unimpressed Olympian to date. That title now belongs to U.S. figure skater Ashley Wagner, who couldn't hide her displeasure about the score she'd received in the team figure skating event. Internet memes bearing Wagner's face spread like wildfire, as did our love of the sassy competitor.
Seriously, Poker Faces Are Overrated
After a devastating loss to Canada in the gold medal final, putting on a happy face was not an option for some members of the U.S. women’s ice hockey team. We’re not sure we can blame the ladies, though: We could hear their hearts breaking from our couches.
Weir + Lipinski = Our Favorite TV Couple
If we don't see these two in primetime in Pyeongchang, we'll be forced to pull our best Ashley Wagner "WTF?!" face. After all, there’s a reason we named them a runner-up for Performer of the Week.
High Expectations Are The Worst Expectations
Sure, many of the athletes in Sochi lived up to their pre-Olympics hype (Meryl Davis and Charlie White, anyone?). But for others — including Alpine skier Bode Miller and snowboarder Shaun White — high expectations resulted in crushing disappointments. Miller failed to medal until the second half of the Games, a third gold medal eluded White in the halfpipe, and even Russian figure skater Evgeni Plushenko fell victim to an injury. This time around, the Olympics were a dark horse’s game.
Dutch Speed Skaters Are Scary Good
Four — count ’em, four! — podium sweeps in four speed skating events? Our hats are off to you, Netherlands: That’s no easy task.
Emotional Interviews Need To Be Cut Short
Some say reporter Christin Cooper was just doing her job when she pushed skier Bode Miller to tears in a post-game interview. Others say she was crossing the lines of professionalism. Regardless, we’re not sure anything good came from airing the awkward interview, in which Cooper asked three consecutive questions about Miller’s late brother before the athlete doubled over in tears. Surely this could have been left on the cutting room floor?
Pink Eye Should Never Be On TV
Dear Bob Costas: You know we love you. You know we hated to see you turn over the primetime seat to Matt Lauer and Meredith Vieira. You know we tried to ignore your hazy, gunky left eye on the first few nights of coverage. But please, please, never subject us to a double dose of conjunctivitis again. It’s nothing personal, promise. It’s just really gross.
Who Needs A Medal When You Can Have Puppies?
U.S. slopestyle skier Gus Kenworthy knew exactly what he was doing when he tweeted a photo of himself with stray puppies. The athlete, who earned a silver medal in Sochi, plans to adopt five of the pups… and, though he isn’t anticipating it, he’s about to inherit a lot more swooning fans, too.
Athletic Talent Is a Family Matter
How's this for sibling rivalry? Three sisters competing against each other in the women's moguls, with two of them earning gold and silver in the final competition. That became a reality for Justine and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe, who competed alongside third sister Maxime in Sochi. A medal wasn't meant to be for Maxime, who wiped out on her second run, but the Dufour-Lapointes were unquestionably the most talented family of the 2014 games.
Youth Is Not Wasted On The Young
Mikaela Shiffrin. Julia Lipnitskaia. Yuzuru Hanyu. Gracie Gold. Some of the most recognizable names in Sochi belonged to the youngest competitors — figure-skating phenom Lipnitskaia clocks in at just 15 (!). But this years' games are hopefully just the beginning: We can't wait to see what these virtuosos do in 2018.