Tuesday in Beijing at the 2022 Winter Olympics was jam-packed with excitement. In figure skating, three-time world champion Nathan Chen, Olympic silver medalist Shoma Uno and newcomer Yuma Kagiyama had stellar short programs, while two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu had a major error that likely will cost him a chance at a medal.
Finally, the U.S. vs. Canada women's hockey rivalry didn't disappoint. We've got the updates from a busy night:
Another gold for Geisenberger
Germany's Natalie Geisenberger won her third straight gold in the women's luge on Tuesday.
Geisenberger went down last and edged past her teammate Anna Berreiter by 0.493 seconds to take gold. Geisenberger, who won gold in both singles and relays at Sochi 2014 and Pyeongchang 2018, finished with a total time of 3:53.454. The German great was competing after returning to training in September 2021, having taken an 18-month break from the sport to have her first child, Leo.
Berreiter's second-place finish was a remarkable achievement given this was her first Olympics, while ROC's Tatyana Ivanova took bronze.
The USA's highest finisher was Ashley Farquharson, who came in 12th. Summer Britcher and Emily Sweeney finished outside of the places for a crack in the final run, in 23rd and 26th, respectively. Sweeney's time was hampered by a crash on Monday's second run, but she completed the run.
Italy takes mixed curling gold
The Italians, on a Cinderella run to the gold, never lost in the tournament (11-0). How unlikely was this medal? In Italy's previous three team appearances in Olympic curling, it went a combined 8-19 and never advanced to a medal match.
Chen sets record high score in short program
Nathan Chen punched the air at the end of his short program, all ghosts of 2018 banished. While the medals won't be awarded until Thursday, Chen won the first part of his much-anticipated showdown with two-time Olympic champion Yuzuru Hanyu. He skated flawlessly to score a world-record 113.97 points -- a record previously held by Hanyu (111.82).
"I was just elated," Chen told NBC. "The last Olympics, both short programs didn't go the way I wanted. Finally getting the opportunity to skate the program the way I wanted feels great."
Gold medals are not won in short programs, but they can be lost. Chen learned that all too well four years ago in Pyeongchang. But this time, it was Japan's Hanyu who made an extremely uncharacteristic mistake. He was supposed to do a quad salchow for his opening jump and instead popped it -- meaning he registered zero points for that element. He was graceful and majestic as always throughout the rest of the skate but scored only 95.15 points. He was visibly upset as he left the ice and finished the day in a previously unthinkable eighth place.
Sensing their opportunity, Hanyu's teammates Yuma Kagiyama and Shoma Uno, the 2018 silver medalist, also registered strong performances to take second and third. Kagiyama, skating to Michael Buble, was sassy and charming. He beamed leaving the ice. Watch out for him in the free skate.
American Jason Brown, whose last Olympics was in 2014, skated last and scored a personal best of 97.24 points. He was the only man in the final group of skaters who did not attempt a quad, which has long hindered his medal hopes. -- Elaine Teng
The rivalry: Canada 4, Team USA 2
Canada defeated Team USA in the latest edition of hockey's greatest rivalry, 4-2, as the Americans never recovered from a second-period meltdown. The U.S. peppered the Canadian goal with 53 shots for the game, but a combination of goalie Ann-Renee Desbiens (51 saves) and a couple of shots off the goalpost kept them from converting.
Sorry eh 🇨🇦— Team Canada (@TeamCanada) February 8, 2022
Canada's Brianne Jenner scored two goals, and Marie-Philip Poulin scored on a penalty shot. The U.S. was 1-for-6 on the power play and is now 4-for-19 with the player advantage in the tournament.
The U.S. struggled on the power play, converting once in six opportunities, and is now 4-for-19 for the Olympics. Barring a major upset, the two sides will likely meet in the gold-medal game. --Greg Wyshynski
Back-to-back records in men's speedskating
Kjeld Nuis broke the Olympic record to win the men's 1,500-meter speedskating gold on Tuesday.
Nuis' triumph saw the Netherlands win its third gold at these Olympic Games, but it took a remarkable effort from the 32-year-old, as he had to break an Olympic record set by his teammate Thomas Krol just moments earlier.
In case all of this wasn't enough, he also set a new #SpeedSkating - Men's 1500m Olympic record!— Olympics (@Olympics) February 8, 2022
Congratulations! 🙌#Beijing2022 | #StrongerTogether | @TeamNLTweets | @KjeldNuis pic.twitter.com/ydKtYUN3mT
Krol had gone in the 10th pair and clocked a new Olympic-record time of 1:43.55 to take first spot, but Nuis then edged that out in the next run with his time of 1:42.21. This saw Nuis take gold, Krol silver and Korea's Kim Min-seok win bronze.
Team USA's Joey Mantia finished in sixth, with Emery Lehman in 11th, while Casey Dawson finished 28th after he managed to make it to Beijing with just eight hours to spare before his event. He also raced in borrowed skates after his were lost in transit.
Big update! Casey Dawson has made it to the Olympic Village. He's awaiting COVID results. Also... his luggage HAS BEEN LOST- He is hoping to compete in 8 hrs 🤯 #WinterOlympics @NBCOlympics pic.twitter.com/UmcaqmtAVL— Gadi Schwartz (@GadiNBC) February 8, 2022
"This was my second time stepping on the ice without my own blades, but I was super happy to have stepped on the line in the first place," Dawson said. "I managed to pack my skinsuit in my carry-on luggage, but my blades were in the luggage that was lost, so I was lucky enough to have another competitor who skated in the 1,500 today -- Haralds Silovs -- who lent me his blades, and I couldn't be any more grateful to have that going into this race.
"I'm so happy to finally be here in Beijing, as I didn't think I'd get here." -- Tom Hamilton
Gu becomes the first Olympic champion in freeski big air
By landing two of the biggest tricks in women's freeskiing, Eileen Gu captured the win in the sport's Olympic debut in Beijing. In fact, only two women in the world, Gu and Tess Ledeux of France, have ever landed 1620 spins in a freeskiing contest, and both did so Tuesday to go 1-2 in big air finals. Gu had never landed the trick in competition. When she did so on her third jump, she screamed, skied to the bottom of the landing and dropped to her knees.
"I'm not crying," Gu said into the television camera. "I'm definitely not crying." Gu's third-run score saw her jump into first place above Ledeux, who had landed the double cork 1620 on her first run. When Gu saw the score, she grabbed her helmet and fought back tears. She took off her skis and bowed to the crowd. Then she waited. In her third and final attempt, Ledeux, who won the X Games big air event for the third time just a few days before flying to Beijing, threw a massive switch 1440, but landed on one ski and was unable to reclaim the lead. Swiss skier Mathilde Gremaud finished third. Darian Stevens, the only U.S. skier to make the final, finished 11th.
Born in San Francisco to a Chinese mother and American father and raised by her mother and maternal grandmother, Gu opted to compete for China at these Games. With the win, Gu takes China's gold-medal haul to three, triple its total from the Pyeongchang Olympics. And that's with two events left to compete: freeski slopestyle and halfpipe.
"That was the best moment of my life. The happiest moment, day, whatever -- of my life. I just cannot believe what just happened," she said after. -- Alyssa Roenigk
Men's downhill is back on the podium
Fifty years after his mother, Barbara Ann, won a slalom gold in the 1972 Sapporo Games, Ryan Cochran-Siegle won silver in the men's Super-G after a 1:19:98 run. After charging to the finish, Cochran-Siegle said, "What's up, Vermont? I hope it holds," to the camera.
Cochran-Siegle, 29, and in his second Olympics, was in the lead when he went past the third checkpoint of the men's downhill event, but finished four-hundredths of a second behind Austria's Matthias Mayer, who defended his Olympic title. Norway's Aleksander Aamodt Kilde picked up bronze.
Cochran-Siegle is the sixth member of his family to compete in an Alpine event at the Olympics. At the 2018 Olympics, the U.S. men's Alpine team failed to make the podium for the first time in 20 years. -- Aish Kumar
Take a bow, Donovan Carrillo
Already the first Mexican figure skater to compete in the Olympic Games in 30 years, Donovan Carrillo made even more history for his country on Tuesday by becoming the first skater from his country to qualify for the free skate portion of the event. The 22-year-old Carrillo dazzled those watching in the building and around the world with a high-energy performance, which included a successful quadruple toe loop and a triple axel, set to a medley of music by Santana.
He earned a 79.69 score for his efforts, and immediately qualified for Thursday's free skate. He couldn't hide his excitement after completing his routine, and after hearing his score, smiled and raised his hands in jubilation.
Carrillo, who was a flag bearer for Mexico in the opening ceremony, practices at an ice rink in a shopping mall in Leon, Mexico. He already owns the record for best result at a world championship by a Mexican skater after finishing in 20th place in 2021. -- D'Arcy Maine
Injury update on O'Brien
Team USA skier Nina O'Brien, who was carried off on a stretcher after crashing across the finish line of the second run of her giant slalom event on Monday, posted on Instagram that she had surgery Monday night Beijing time to "stabilize her tibia, which unfortunately was an open fracture through my leg."
She added that she would have further care back in the U.S.
"I keep replaying it in my head, wishing I'd skied those last few gates differently. But here we are," she wrote in her Instagram post. "I want to say thank you to everyone who's taken care of me."
O'Brien, 24, lost her balance close to the finish line of her run. --Aish Kumar
Peng Shuai watches Eileen Gu
Tennis star Peng Shuai was spotted at the Big Air Shougang venue with IOC President Thomas Bach. They watched Eileen Gu win her gold medal in women's freeski big air. Bach told the media that Peng is leaving the bubble today and going into the required quarantine to leave the Olympic closed loop and enter the general population of China.