Nathan Chen of the United States put together the most impressive free skate of the day at the 2018 Winter Olympics, with several brilliant quad jumps in his routine. He was in first place for a long time, but ultimately was pushed out of the podium spots by Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan, Shoma Uno of Japan and Javier Fernandez of Spain, who took gold, silver and bronze, respectively.
Chen struggled in the short program previously, which hurt his potential to finish with a medal. His free skate was incredible, but it just wasn’t enough to give him the win.
Below, you can find the full play-by-play from our live results of the free skate, and below that, a full list of results.
Free skate results, fourth group of six
The fourth group started with a very strong run from Dmitri Aliev of the Olympic Athletes from Russia. His score of 267.51 moved him high up the leaderboard. Then it was onto Jin Boyang of China, who managed a 194.45, for a total score of 297.77, unseating Chen for the lead!
Patrick Chan of Canada, one of the most decorated figure skaters of all time, had a very nice final run, including a quad toeloop into a double toeloop to start his routine. His total score of 263.43 placed him in sixth overall.
Yuzuru Hanyu, defending his gold medal from Sochi and clear winner in the short program, started with a perfect quad salchow and then a quad toeloop that was equally perfect. A quad salchow into a triple toe was his sixth move of the program. He stumbled on his next quad toeloop, and his final jump, a triple lutz, he barely managed to stay on his feet.
Hanyu’s free skate score of 206.17 put him in first with a total of 317.85, pushing Boyang to second and Chen, the American, to third.
Javier Fernandez of Spain was next, going for his country’s fourth ever medal at the Winter Olympics, and its first in figure skating. He had a beautiful run, finishing with a free skate score of 197.66, and a total score of 305.24. That pushed Chen off the podium.
Shoma Uno of Japan was last to go, with a decent chance at making the podium. his score of 202.73 gave him a 306.90, giving him the silver medal.
Free skate results, third group of six
Vincent Zhou of the United States started his routine with a perfect quadruple lux into a triple toeloop. He then attempted a quad flip, but came up short on sticking the landing, drawing just 9.90 points for it. He did nail the quad Salchow right after that, however.
Zhou finished his run with a score of 192.16, with an 84.53 in the short program the previous day, for a total of 276.69, good for second place behind Chen.
Adam Rippon, also of the United States, put together a triple axel into a pair of double toeloops. Another triple axel followed, then a triple flip into a triple toeloop, and a triple salchow, then a triple lux to end the jumps. His spins at the end of the routine were very good. His total score was a 259.36, good for fourth place at the time.
Mikhail Kolyada, an Olympic Athlete of Russia, scored a total of 264.25, which put him in third going into the final group of six.
Free skate results, second group of six
The next group of six got underway with Oleksii Bychenko of Israel, and he unseated Tanaka for first. His countryman, Danel Samohin, posted a 251.44 total to take over second place. Then it was Nathan Chen of the United States.
Chen started with a quadruple lutz, then a quad flip double toeloop, a very strong start to his routine. A quad flip and a pair of quad toeloops gave way to the quad salchow, giving him all five of his of quad jumps. Chen’s short program was a disappointment, but his free skate was beautiful. He posted a free skate score of 215.08, giving him a 297.35 overall, easily in first place for the time being.
After Chen, the best run of the second group came from Cha Jun-hwan, who posted a 248.59.
Free skate results, first group of six
Dennis Vasiljevs of Latvia will be in first place to start, but he had two falls, so he will be bumped fairly quickly. Matteo Rizzo of Italy was up next, and it was a strong Olympic debut, with a free skate score of 156.78, but a total of 232.41 that put him in second place overall. Paul Fentz of Germany came out and skated to Game of Thrones, but placed in third. Vasiljevs wasn’t displaced until Keiji Tanaka of Japan, who posted a total score of 244.83 with a free skate run of 164.78. Finally, Moris Kvitelashvili of Georgia posted a score of 204.57 to end the first group.
Men’s Figure Skating Final Scores
|Nathan Chen||United States||297.35|
|Vincent Zhou||United States||276.69|
|Dmitri Aliev||Olympic Athletes from Russia||267.51|
|Mikhail Kolyada||Olympic Athletes from Russia||264.25|
|Adam Rippon||United States||259.36|
|Cha Jun-hwan||South Korea||248.59|
|Michal Březina||Czech Republic||246.07|
Before Saturday’s free skate
On Friday evening, the gold, silver and bronze medals in men’s figure skating will be won and lost at the 2018 Winter Olympics. The free skate, known by many as the long program, is the second part of the competition following the short program held on Friday.
Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan, Javier Fernandez of Spain and Shoma Uno of Japan are the leaders after the short program, while three Americans did well enough to qualify for the free skate. The competition begins at 8 p.m. ET on NBC, with live streaming via NBC Olympics and FuboTV.
We’re going to have live coverage of the event, which will feature 24 skaters, including Nathan Chen, Vincent Zhou and Adam Rippon of the United States. Earning a medal is going to be tough, though, as the highest-rated of the group is Rippon at No. 7 overall following the short program.
The free skate is called the “long program” because it lasts four minutes, 30 seconds, and is very taxing on the body. The men’s event is now generally focused on one thing, primarily: quadruple jumps. The quad jump is exactly what it sounds like — four rotations in the air, landing on one foot. It’s the skating or snowboarding equivalent of a 1440.
The way the judging has been going at these Olympics, pulling off multiple quad jumps, especially late in the program, is the way to go. Chen is a master of multiple quad jumps, but fell on a quad lutz, and nearly fell on a triple axel in his short program. He is in 17th place with no hope for a medal, lest the rest of the field is stricken with the flu.
Chen was a gold medal favorite, so that hurts the United States quite a bit. Rippon had a brilliant performance with no mistakes in the short program, but he did not attempt any quad jumps, so even though people ahead of him actually fell down and had sloppy runs, the difficulty modifier in the scoring have them ahead of him. Rippon is going to need some help to make it onto the podium.
How to watch figure skating on Friday
Date: Feb. 16, 2018
Event: Men’s free skate
Time: 8 p.m. - 11 p.m. ET (primetime coverage)
Men’s short program results
|5||Olympic Athletes of Russia||Dmitri Aliev||98.98||Q|
|7||United States||Adam Rippon||87.95||Q|
|8||Olympic Athletes of Russia||Mikhail Kolyada||86.69||Q|
|9||Czech Republic||Michal Brezina||85.15||Q|
|12||United States||Vincent Zhou||84.53||Q|
|15||South Korea||Jun-hwan Cha||83.43||Q|
|17||United States||Nathan Chen||82.27||Q|
|25||Malaysia||Julian Zhi Jie Yee||73.58|
|28||Philippines||Michael Christian Martinez||55.56|