All demons of 2018 were exorcised when Nathan Chen punched the air at the conclusion of his short program. Chen won the first half of his much-anticipated clash with two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu, despite the fact that the medals would not be handed until Thursday. He skated brilliantly to set a new world record of 113.97 points, which he shared with Hanyu.
Chen told NBC, “I was absolutely ecstatic.” “Both short programs at the last Olympics did not go as planned. It feels amazing to finally be able to skate the program the way I wanted.”
Short programs can not win gold medals, but they may be lost. Chen learned this the hard way in Pyeongchang four years ago. But this time, it was Hanyu of Japan who committed an uncommon error. He was meant to complete a quad salchow on his first jump, but instead popped it, resulting in a zero-point element. Throughout the rest of the skate, he was beautiful and magnificent as always, but he only got 95.15 points. As he walked off the rink, he was clearly disappointed, and he concluded the day in an unfathomable seventh position.
Yuma Kagiyama, Hanyu’s teammate, and Shoma Uno, the 2018 silver medalist, both put up great performances to finish second and third, respectively. Skating to Michael Buble, Kagiyama was cheeky and charming. He smiled as he stepped off the rink. In the free skate, keep an eye out for him.
Jason Brown of the United States, who previously competed in the Olympics in 2014, finished last and set a personal best of 97.24 points. He was the only skater in the final group who did not try a quad, which has hampered his medal chances for a long time.