Adam Rippon is an American figure skater and the first openly gay athlete to qualify for the Winter Olympics. He also recently won a bronze medal for team USA in the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics and is now the first openly gay athlete to win a medal in the Winter Olympics. Adam’s openness and passion for the sport of figure skating is seen by many as an encouragement to other gay athletes across the United States and the world.
Adam was born in Pennsylvania and is the oldest of six children. He was born with severe hearing loss but underwent corrective surgery at YALE University and now has near perfect hearing. He started skating when he was only 10 years old. In his short career he has already made it up to the top echelon of athletics as a USA medal winning Olympian. In his past he has choreographed skating programs for other Team USA athletes.
Adam has stated that he has no sort of skating background and that he hated skating until the winter of 1999. In 2008, 9 years later he won his first World Junior title, he says that that was the first time his dad realized that skating was more than just a hobby for him. The very next year he won his second World Junior title and he started to realize that he was already chasing his dream. In 2010, he was an alternate at the Vancouver Winter Olympics for the US Olympic Team. 4 years later Adam failed to qualify for the Sochi Olympics, he stated that it was one of the worst times in his career and he was devastated. Adam soon dried the tears and got back on his skates again more determined than ever. He dedicated the next four years to training and told himself that no matter what happens he was going to be proud of himself because he knew he gave it his best.
Adam made the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics and was honored to be representing his USA Olympic team. He states that skating has changed his life in so many positive ways and has taught him lessons that he carries into his everyday life. He says that it is hard learning life lessons in front of so many people but falling down and getting back up is a part of life.
Well Adam certainly earned his place at this years Winter Olympics and has already received a bronze medal for his skating. Many people feel like Adam may have been cheated. Adam performed a perfect routine and landed all his jumps and steps but came up short to two other skaters, both of which fell on the ice. The other two skaters did perform harder routines than Adam, but they didn’t execute them perfectly. This got the internet in an uproar with many people saying that “Rippon got ripped-off”.
A lot of controversy has always surrounded the figure skating world. In 1994, Tonya Harding was accused of hiring a hitman to hurt fellow figure skater and then USA Olympic teammate Nancy Kerrigan. She was eventually arrested, kicked off the team, had her medals stripped, fined $100,000 and banned from United States Figure Skating Association events indefinitely. In 2002, we witnessed the Salt Lake City scandal. Two Canadians we’re awarded second place only to be awarded gold medals in the following months after the Olympic Committee discovered that the scoring system was fixed to award the gold to the Russians. This scandal would eventually lead to a complete overhaul in how scoring is done in the Olympics today.
There have been many scandals in sports over the years and they are usually tied to illegal gambling is some way. Match fixing has been a part of sports for decades and it has affected many different games over time. Many people argue that legal sports betting would combat illegal activities and make the games more fun for fans. While there are two side to every argument, the United States is currently awaiting a ruling from the Supreme Court on the Christie vs. NCAA case which could pave the way for legal sports betting. Many states have already begun legislation to allow sports betting if the courts rule in favor of former New Jersey governor Chris Christie. For most places, legal Olympic gambling is only allowed with licensed US friendly online sportsbooks operating offshore. At these destinations you will find betting lines on the 2018 Winter Olympic games.
As of now, no one is pointing the finger and only the internet is alleging Adam got cheated out of a gold medal but with recent scandals surrounding the sport, people are going to question and look a little closer when it comes to figure skating. There is still more skating to be done for Team USA and Adam as the Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea are just getting underway. National coverage is broadcast on NBC and its affiliates and available for live streaming at nbcolympics.com.