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Salt Lake Olympics Corrupt

Wed Feb 13, 2002 4:14 pm

After all the scandal we had to endure while the Salt Lake City Organizing Committee tried to get the Olympics in the first place, it seeems the scandals are not over. It strikes me as quite amusing that this Holy Mormon city is the center of the most corrupt Olympics in history, but that is another story...

Sources say Russian and French judges made deal

By Cynthia Faulkner

SALT LAKE CITY -- Sources within the International Skating Union have told ESPN/ABC Sports figure skating reporter Christine Brennan that a collaboration between the French and Russian judges helped spark the controversy that has the skating world and the Winter Olympics abuzz.

The Canadian Olympic delegation on Tuesday requested an investigation into why Russians Elena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze won the gold medal when many observers feel that Canadians Jamie Sale and David Pelletier were more worthy.

Brennan, one of the world's leading authorities on figure skating, says that reliable sources within the ISU told her that a collaboration between the French and Russian judges did happen.

"When (figure skating officials) investigate, I think they're going to find out that the French judge worked a deal with the Russians," said Brennan, one of the world's leading authorities on figure skating.

"There's absolutely no doubt that the Canadians should have won. Their 'Love Story' program was just marvelous. The performance was perfect.

"The Russian pair made small errors including a small mistake on one jump. To me it's clear. It should have been crystal clear for the Canadians."

Brennan said she watched the tapes again and the Canadians' performance only gets better.

"I was shocked the moment I saw the scores and I'm still shocked," she said. "I ran into three international judges, all of them judging at the Olympics, within three minutes after the competition. 'This is an outrage,' they said in unison. I've never seen judges come up to a reporter -- as opposed to going away from them -- and say this is an outrage."

Until Monday, only a few diehard figure skating fans in North America knew who Sale and Pelletier were. That's all changed.

"Their agent told me he's had about a hundred calls," Brennan said. "I'm guessing they are now a household name, which never would have been if they'd won the gold medal with no controversy. I would imagine that they became millionaires in the last 24 hours. The sympathy factor is huge."

The scandal already is drawing comparisons to figure skating's most famous pair of all -- Tonya Harding and Nancy Kerrigan. The story could grow if the United States were to get involved because it's conceivable that if Sale and Pelletier should have won gold, Americans Kyoko Ina and John Zimmerman could have won bronze, Brennan said.

"This is really starting to remind me of Tonya and Nancy, but it's not there yet," Brennan said. "There's something about this that's starting to build and there's the sense that the pace with which it's starting is like it was with Tonya and Nancy. Now there's an investigation and the story has legs."

Cynthia Faulkner is the Olympics editor for ESPN.com.
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RE: Salt Lake Olympics Corrupt

Wed Feb 13, 2002 5:10 pm

I am soooo glad that this scandal doesn't involve an American skater  Laugh out loud

It is sooo refreshing  Smokin cool

And it still proves that if you can't determine a winner by score, time, or order of finish. It isn't really a true sport.
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RE: Salt Lake Olympics Corrupt

Wed Feb 13, 2002 5:17 pm

Where's Al Gore when you need him?
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RE: Salt Lake Olympics Corrupt

Wed Feb 13, 2002 11:24 pm

Look, I'm the first person to point out the Mormon-tinged hypocrisy around the securing of the games, but they had NOTHING to do with the skating controversy.

In any case, it seems to me this aura of invincibility on the part of the IOC, and the chummy, corrupt culture it has bred, seems to have flourished under someone who strikes me as an intensely arrogant man....Juan Antonio Samaranch, the aristocratic snob that's been the IOC President forever.
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RE: Salt Lake Olympics Corrupt

Wed Feb 13, 2002 11:44 pm

Seems like some people feel you chose a wrong heading...

Anyway, this is a scandal concerning the judges and not the Olympics as a whole. The Russians bought the medal (yes for money) and they got it. Let´s just hope this isn´t what the Olympics are going to become (or already are?).
The Metro might be the Sub(optimal)way

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