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5 to Watch Thursday: Figure Skating Finale, Daring Ski Cross and Shani's Speedskate

Day 13 in Pyeongchang features the finale event in the figure skating competition and the highly dangerous sport of ski cross

From an epic finale to the figure skating competition to an ACL redemption tour in the daring sport of ski cross and Shani Davis' speedskate, there should be no shortage of must-see action on Day 13 of the 2018 Pyeongchang Olympics. 

Russian Zagitova Wins Figure Skating Gold, Edges Medvedeva

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The women's free skate was billed to be a battle of the Russians and it lived up to the hype.

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This is not the first time Zagitova has edged Medvedeva — Medvedeva had not lost a competition in more than two years before Zagitova beat her at this year’s European Championships.

Canada’s Kaetlyn Osmond won bronze.

The three American figure skaters — Karen Chen, Bradie Tennell and Mirai Nagasu — all stumbled at various points in their free skates. Tennell finished ninth, Nagasu 10th and Chen 11th.

Watch: Russians claim gold and silver in women's skating

Must-See: Bradie Tennell has surprise fall in short program

MORE: Teary Mirai Nagasu addresses short program fail

Canada Takes Gold and Silver in Women's Ski Cross Final

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Marielle Thompson, of Canada, competes during qualifications in a U.S. Grand Prix women's freestyle skicross event Friday, Jan. 20, 2017, in Solitude, Utah.

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Three-time Olympian Fanny Smith of Switzerland edged out Sweden's Sandra Naeslund to earn bronze. Smith finished in the top 10 in the last two Games.

Serwa, who won silver in Sochi, faced a major setback in December 2016 when she damaged cartilage in her knee in a training accident, cutting her season short. She came back for the 2017-18 season with a vengeance, placing third at the World Cup season opener in Val Thorens, France.

Canadian Marielle Thompson failed to make it to the quarterfinal after an early crash. Thompson won gold in the event in Sochi, but in October she ruptured her ACL and MCL ligaments in a training accident. Her Pyeongchang appearance came only four months after having her knee surgically repaired — her first serious runs since the accident were just days before the ski cross final.

No Americans contended for a medal.

Watch: Canada Takes Gold and Silver in Women's Ski Cross Final

Must-See: Experience ski cross, known for its speed and crazy crashes

Bobsled Training With Texan Justin Olsen

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Bobsledder Justin Olsen.

If there was a positive that the Americans took away from the two-man bobsled competition at the Pyeongchang Olympics, it's this: They now know what not to do. Knowing what to do is still a work in progress. 

[NBCO-GalleryFeed] Justin Olsen's Childhood Photos

Watch: Click here to watch the training runs

Must-See: Justin Olsen Feeling Lucky Despite 14th-Place Finish

Russians Guaranteed First Hockey Medal in 16 Years

Alexander Zemlianichenko/AP
Russian forward Pavel Datsyuk serves as team captain for the "Olympic Athletes from Russia" hockey team at the Pyeongchang Games.

There will be a new Olympic gold medalist in men’s hockey, either the Russians or Germany, after they booked their tickets to the final by beating the Czech Republic and Canada, respectively.

While the Russians were expected to make the finals, the Germans’ 4-3 win over powerhouse Canada was a major upset. But it’s not too surprising that there’s an upset in these Olympics, the first being played without NHL players since they were allowed to participate in 1998.

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The Russians have managed a silver in 1998, a bronze in 2002 and nothing since, while Germany hasn’t medaled since it got bronze in 1976.

Now Russia — playing as the Olympic Athletes from Russia because Russia is not allowed to compete as a team due to a doping scandal — gets a shot at its first gold since it played as the post-Soviet Unified Team in 1992. No matter what happens, Germans will have its best men’s hockey medal ever.

Watch: Click here to watch on digital platforms.

Must See: Finland Coach Takes a Puck to the Head

Dutch Speedskater Takes Gold in Shani Davis’ Signature Event

The 1000-meter sprint was Shani Davis’ event. He won gold medals in the event in 2006 and 2010. His world record time of 1:06.42, set in 2009, still stands.

But it’s been nearly a decade since Davis, one of America’s greatest speedskaters ever, turned in those record-setting performances, and the 35-year-old didn’t manage to find one last magical performance at the Pyeongchang Games.

The race was won by Kjeld Nuis of the Netherlands, the gold medalist in the 1,500 meters last week and the 2017 world champion over 1,000 meters. He was followed by Norway’s Havard Lorentzen, who won gold in the 500 meters, and South Korea’s Kim Tae-Yun.

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Watch: Click here to watch on digital platforms.

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Brian Curtis' Pyeongchang Olympics Photo Diary

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