Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Postcard from Salt Lake City

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Postcard from Salt Lake City

Article excerpt

Byline: Mark Woods, Times-Union sports columnist

My wife keeps saying she wants to take a ski vacation. And although I haven't tried to ski in nearly 20 years -- emphasis on the word "tried" -- being here makes me want to give it another shot. There is just one problem. And it can be summed up in three letters: ACL.

I like my knees the way they are.

I read a few days ago that, with one exception, every U.S. Alpine skiing champion between 1976 and 2000 has torn an anterior cruciate ligament or suffered another major knee injury.

The key word here: champion.

I mean, these are the best skiers in the world and they're still blowing out their knees. It turns out that last year, about 20,000 weekend warriors suffered ACL injuries while skiing.

It's enough to make me want to stick to something safe. Like the bunny slope. Or maybe the hot tub.

WHO'S HOT

Derek Parra: Speedskating

Derek Parra set a world record in the 1,500 meters to claim Olympic gold yesterday, becoming the first double-medalist for the Americans at the speedskating oval. Parra's time of 1 minute, 43.95 seconds was more than a second faster than the pre-Olympic mark of 1:45.20 held by South Korea's Lee Kyu-hyuk. Parra won silver in the 5,000.

WHO'S NOT

Lithuania: Ice dancing

The Lithuanians, who finished fifth in ice dancing, filed a protest yesterday questioning the judging, adding to the controversy in Olympic figure skating.

Margarita Drobiazko and Povilas Vanagas don't expect to win their appeal but said they came forward to generate publicity and expose judging inconsistencies that long have cast a cloud over the legitimacy of ice dancing.

They said they were emboldened by the case of Canadian pairs skaters Jamie Sale and David Pelletier.

The protest, filed with the International Skating Union, questioned the voting that placed the couple lower than third-place Italian and fourth-place Canadian couples who fell during Monday's free dance, the final phase of the competition.

TODAY'S COOL EVENT

Men's ice hockey

The American and German coaches have flicked verbal jabs at each other. …

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