×
FOLLOW THE WEEK ON FACEBOOK
February 25, 2018

The 2018 Winter Olympics came to a close Sunday night in South Korea, with the Olympic flame extinguished and the torch passed to Beijing, the host of the 2022 Winter Games.

Embed from Getty Images

While athletes are divided by country in the opening ceremony, the Olympians all marched into the stadium together during the closing ceremony, and Lee Hee-beom, the Pyeongchang Olympics organizing committee president, said he believed that South and North Korean athletes marching side by side "will definitely serve as a cornerstone of the unification of the Korean Peninsula."

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

The ceremony included performances by K-pop singers and Oh Yeon-joon, the 11-year-old winner of South Korea's version of The Voice; drones that lit the sky up in the shape of Soohorang, the tiger mascot of the 2018 Winter Games; and skating panda bears, a nod to the upcoming Beijing Olympics. For those who don't want to wait until 2022 for those Winter Games, the Tokyo Summer Games are just two years away. Catherine Garcia

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

Embed from Getty Images

February 24, 2018

A daring squirrel narrowly cheated death Saturday while attempting to sprint across the course of the women's parallel giant slalom competition at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.

Austrian snowboarder Daniela Ulbing just barely maneuvered around the animal, which appeared to reconsider its choices after she passed. Watch the squirrel's moment of destiny below. Bonnie Kristian

February 24, 2018

The United States men's curling team took its first-ever gold medal at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang on Saturday. After nearly being eliminated from the competition, the team made a comeback win, besting both the Canadian team — prior to this victory, no American team in men's or women's curling has ever beaten Canada at the Olympics — and the Swedish team, which was ranked first in the world.

"During the entire end we could kind of feel it building," said team leader John Shuster of the gold-medal victory over Sweden. "Their margin for error got really small."

Also Saturday, Ester Ledecka of the Czech Republic became the first woman to take gold in two separate events at the Winter Games. Last Saturday, she was the surprise victor in Alpine skiing, and this week, Ledecka triumphed in her primary event, women's parallel giant slalom snowboarding. Bonnie Kristian

February 22, 2018

Team USA beat Canada in the Olympic women's hockey finals on Thursday in Pyeongchang, South Korea, in a thrilling 3-2 shootout after a hard-fought game that had ended 2-2 even after a 20-minute overtime. Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson fired in the game-winning shot past Canada's Shannon Szabados, and when U.S. goalie Maddie Rooney blocked the potential equalizing shot from Canada's Meghan Agosta, the U.S. women won their first gold medal since 1998, and their second ever. Canada had won the women's hockey gold in the past four Winter Olympics.

Canada led near the end of regulation time, before Monique Lamoreux-Davidson — Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson's sister — tied the score 2-2. Before Jocelyne Lamoureux-Davidson's game-winning shot, Americans Gigi Marvin and Amanda Kessel had scored, as had Canadians Agosta and Melodie Daoust. It was the first time the women's hockey gold medal had ever been decided in a shootout.

The U.S. is now in 4th place with eight golds and 21 total medals, behind Norway (33 medals), Germany (24 medals), and Canada (22 medals, 9 golds). Peter Weber

February 21, 2018

American skiers have not traditionally excelled at cross country events at the Olympics — it is called Nordic skiing for a reason — and in fact, only one American had medaled in cross country before Wednesday — Bill Koch, who took the silver at Innsbruck in 1976. But on Wednesday in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Americans Kikkan Randall and Jessie Diggins won, and it was gold.

Randall and Diggins beat Sweden by 0.19 seconds, and Norway picked up the bronze 3 seconds later. Diggins had fallen behind in the final leg, USA Today reports, but she sprinted her way to the narrow and historic victory.

Including this medal, Team USA has six golds and 14 total medals, putting it in 5th place overall, behind Norway, Germany, Canada, and the Netherlands. Peter Weber

February 20, 2018

There were a lot of stories wrapped into the ice dancing finals on Tuesday at the Winter Olympics in South Korea: French couple Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron scored a record-high 123.35 in their free dance, winning the silver medal despite Papadakis' live wardrobe malfunction during Monday's short program; American siblings Maia and Alex Shibutani took the bronze, beating U.S. national champs Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue while the third U.S. pair, Madison Chock and Evan Bates, dropped to ninth place after a fall in Tuesday's long program; and Canadians Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir had a stunning performance to hang on for the gold, adding their second gold medal this year and third ever (they also won two silvers in the 2014 Sochi Games).

Virtue and Moir's ice dance elicited microphone-distorting shrieks from Olympics super-fan and NBC Olympics analyst Leslie Jones. She was joined by on-again, off-again NBC commentator Adam Rippon, who won a bronze in team figure skating earlier this Olympics, and Scott Hamilton, and they all seemed to be having a fine time with their color commentary.

"Every outfit she's put on, I want to wear to the club," Jones said of Virtue. "Steamy," said Rippon, and Jones concurred: "Are they getting in trouble for how sexy they are?" And to answer Jones' question, which is apparently a pretty common one, no, Virtue and Moir don't appear to be dating. Peter Weber

February 19, 2018

In the last four Winter Olympics, Team USA was either first or second in terms of medals won, but this year "the U.S. is struggling to keep up in the medal race," John Dickerson noted at CBS This Morning on Monday. The U.S. is currently No. 6 in total medals, with 10 medals, one behind the Russians — who are competing without some of their star athletes and without a country, due to doping-related bans.

Norway is cleaning up, with 28 medals, including 11 golds, followed by Germany and Canada.

If the U.S. wants to live up to its computer-predicted glory, it has a week left. Peter Weber

February 12, 2018
Odd Andersen/AFP/Getty Images

On Monday, NBC said that Joshua Cooper Ramo, a commentator whose remarks about Japan and Korea during the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics had offended Koreans, "has completed his responsibilities for NBC in Pyeongchang, and will have no further role on our air." NBC had "apologized quickly both in writing and on television" for Ramo's remark, the network said in a statement, and "we're very gratified that [the Pyeongchang Organizing Committee] has accepted that apology."

NBC had hired Ramo, a co-CEO of Kissinger Associates and a former journalist at Time, to provide cultural and geopolitical analysis during the Pyeongchang Olympics, as he had during the 2008 Beijing Olympics. While noting the arrival of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe during the opening ceremony, Ramo said on air that "every Korean will tell you that Japan is a cultural, technological, and economic example that has been so important to their own transformation." Japan's colonial occupation of the Korean peninsula from 1910 to 1945 has left long-lasting scars on Japanese-Korean relations, and Koreans do not believe Japan deserves credit for South Korea's postwar transformation. Peter Weber

See More Speed Reads