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Where D.C., Maryland and Virginia Olympians stand one week into PyeongChang

Where D.C., Maryland and Virginia Olympians stand one week into PyeongChang

By: Bob Trosset

The 2018 Winter Olympics is now one week old. Competition has not disappointed, and in some cases, gone as planned.

Team USA’s first gold medal went to the 17-year-old snowboarder Red Gerard.

Gerard is the youngest American male to claim a gold medal at the Winter Olympics since 1928 – who saw this one coming?

I had a front row seat when Gerard joined Willie Geist on the TODAY Show.



Chris Mazdzer made history in the men’s singles luge as he took home a silver medal and became the first American to ever place.

Female snowboarder Jamie Anderson defended her slopestyle competition title cruising to another gold medal. Anderson is the first woman to win two Olympic gold medals in snowboard.

Chloe Kim became the youngest woman to ever win an Olympic snowboarding medal when she won gold in the women’s snowboard halfpipe. She turns 18 years old in April.

Shaun White brought home his third Olympic gold medal after crushing the men’s snowboard halfpipe. This comes just months after needing 62 stitches in his face.

Moments after receiving his medal, I had a chance to spend some time with him on our way to NBC’s TODAY Show set.

I don’t usually give others access to my social media, but when I do…

Team USA has totaled eight medals in all, while Germany has 15 and Norway has 18.

How about your DMV Olympians competing at PyeongChang 2018? I’ve been following them closely.

Elana Meyers-Taylor has been preparing for competition which begins Feb. 20 from 6:50-8:45 a.m. ET.

Garrett Roe and USA ice hockey are already in full swing with Olympic competition. The team is 1-1 through two preliminary games, including a 2-1 victory over Slovakia.

Roe logged 12:42 TOI.

Maame Biney, the first African American woman to qualify for Team USA in speedskating, fell short in her four-person quarterfinal heat with a time of 44.77 seconds, 1.28 seconds away from advancing to the semifinals.

Biney is set to compete in the women’s short track 1500-meter competition Feb. 17.

I caught up with her the night after failing to qualify inside NBC’s TODAY Show green room.

She remains upbeat and already motivated for the 2020 Games in Tokyo.

Thomas Hong, along with teammates Henry Krueger, JR Celski and Aaron Tran, finished third in the 5,000-meter short track speedskating relay heats on Feb. 13.

The finals in the men’s 5,000-meter relay is slated for Feb. 22 from 5-7:45 a.m. ET. Hong will compete for his first Olympic medal while representing the state of Maryland.

Freestyle skier, Ashley Caldwell, came up short failing to qualify for the women’s aerial final. Here is video of her run, courtesy of NBC Olympics. will live stream all Olympic competition.

There’s something about the Olympic spirit that delivers special moments time and time again.

With the world as its audience, the Games has proven to, once again, be the true pinnacle of sport.

There is still so much left out there. Hop on the Olympic train while you still can and…

Consider following along while I’m on the ground in South Korea:

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Add me on Snapchat: Bobbytrosset

Follow me on Twitter: @BobTrossetNBCS

Join the conversation and use hashtags like #DMVOlympians & #PyeongChang2018

And Instagram: @BobTrosset

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Caps recall goalie Pheonix Copley after Braden Holtby 'tweaked something' in Dallas game


Caps recall goalie Pheonix Copley after Braden Holtby 'tweaked something' in Dallas game

You thought the Caps had a goalie rotation before, but now they have added a third netminder in the mix.

Pheonix Copley has been recalled from the Hershey Bears and will backup Philipp Grubauer for Washington's game in Detroit, the team announced Thursday.

The move comes in response to an injury concern for Braden Holtby.


Dallas Stars forward Remi Elie collided with Holtby midway through the third period on Tuesday as Holtby was extending to make a save. Holtby reacted awkwardly to the collision and could be seen skating and flexing his leg during the next stoppage.

With only nine games remaining in the regular season, Holtby's injury is a major concern. Given his recent struggles, the final few weeks of the season offered a chance for Holtby to get his game back to form. Just where his game will be when he is 100-percent healthy again is certainly a storyline to watch.


The good news for Washington, however, is that Grubauer is perhaps more ready this season to lead the team than he ever has been and confidence in him around the team should be high.

Since Thanksgiving, Grubauer has played in 22 games with a 17-11-4 record, a .939 save percentage, 1.85 GAA and two shutouts. No goalie who has played in 20 games or more has registered a better save percentage or GAA. He will certainly be looked upon to carry the load until Holtby returns. Whether this means he now has the inside track on starting in the playoffs, however, remains to be seen. That will depend largely on just when Holtby is ready to return and how Grubauer plays down the stretch.

Copley, 26, has gone 14-16-6 with two shutouts, a .898 save percentage and 2.86 GAA in 38 games in Hershey this season. He was originally signed as an undrafted free agent by Washington in 2014. He was traded to the St. Louis Blues in the package that netted the Caps T.J. Oshie, but was reacquired by Washington in Feb. 2017 in a trade deadline deal that included Kevin Shattenkirk.

At the time, it was believed Copley would be the team's backup for the 2017-18 season with Grubauer likely headed to Vegas in the expansion draft. Vegas, however, took Nate Schmidt instead which led to Copley spending the season in Hershey. The Caps now will be happy for the extra goalie depth for as long as Holtby's health remains a concern.

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Why the suggested tweak to the goalie interference rule makes sense to Barry Trotz


Why the suggested tweak to the goalie interference rule makes sense to Barry Trotz

Goalie interference has become one of the most controversial calls in hockey and that has led to the general managers calling for a tweak to the rules before the playoffs.

As the general managers wrapped up their meetings in Florida on Wednesday, they issued a recommendation to the league’s Board of Governors that the final decision for all coach’s challenges for goaltender interference come from the Situation Room in Toronto where a retired referee will be included in the process.

If approved, the change will be enacted for the start of the playoffs.

The issue with goalie interference is consistency. It is an inherently subjective call so on any given night, it is hard to know how the rule will be officiated. That is a problem considering these calls can take goals off the board. The hope is that by requiring that all calls be made by the Situation Room, it will bring more consistency.


The news was met by skepticism from Capitals goalie Philipp Grubauer.

“I can't tell you right now at this point if that's going to change anything,” he said. “If they still communicate with the linesmen, I'm sure they do, but in the end it's a grey area and it's been a grey area for a bunch of years now.”

One issue with the change is that while the Situation Room will make the final call, it will not always have the same personnel for each game and the retired referee to be included will not always be the same individual. Saying the Situation Room will make the call sounds great, but if the calls are still being reviewed by different people every night, will that really lead to greater consistency?

Head coach Barry Trotz thinks so. He applauded the change Wednesday explaining that different factors can weigh on a referee when he is the one making the call.

“Some referees who are more established and more sure of themselves, they won't reverse their calls,” Trotz said. “They just almost say, that's the way I saw it and that's the way it is and live with it. Others get swayed by what they see or maybe the crowd or another coach or how the game is going. It's no different than the student marking their own papers. Let's have a non-emotional person who has no skin in the game and is not in an emotional environment to make those calls and I think you'll find it'll be more consistent.”


If the main issue of the goalie interference was the referees being made to judge their own calls, then yes, this new rule change will go a long way towards fixing the consistency problem.

But perhaps it is unreasonable to expect calls to ever be black and white on a play and a rule that never is.

“Every situation is different,” Grubauer said. “There's no situation that's the same. Did he get bumped in? Was it intentional? Was the goalie intentional making contact? All points they have to look at and it happens so fast. I hope it's going to get better and I hope they will get a foundation down for it.”