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Bode Miller, Ted Ligety struggle in super combined downhill

Sochi Olympics Alpine Skiing Men

Mogan Miller embraces her husband, United States’ Bode Miller after his run in the downhill portion of the men’s supercombined at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, Friday, Feb. 14, 2014, in Krasnaya Polyana, Russia. (AP Photo/Christophe Ena)

Christophe Ena

U.S. skiers Bode Miller and Ted Ligety came into the downhill portion of the men’s super combined with different goals and expectations. Even with that context in mind, they left that part of the event disappointed, as NBCOlympics.com notes.

This was supposed to be the area where Miller, 36, would give himself a little breathing room entering the slalom. Instead, he finished 1.43 seconds behind leader Kjetil Jansrud in 12th place.

Ligety, 29, was essentially in damage control mode in just giving himself an opening for an excellent slalom run - he’s the more technical of the two skiers - but he might have finished too far behind to overcome a talented field. Ligety is almost two seconds behind the top pace (1.93, to be exact) in 18th place.

Ondrej Bank and Matthias Mayer are right behind Jansrud in second and third respectively ... and they’re by no means the only skiers with a legitimate shot at the gold or at least a medal.

Here is a little more about the contenders heading into the slalom from NBCOlympics.com, which begins at 6:30 a.m. ET.

The Top 10 results, not surprisingly, were jammed with speed specialists. Of note in that group is Ivica Kostelic of Croatia, who sits in ninth-place 0.93 seconds behind Jansrud. Kostelic is the strongest slalom skier in the group, and his father Ante, Croatia’s coach, will set the gates for the slalom run.

Here’s the link for the live stream:

CLICK HERE TO WATCH LIVE

Follow James O’Brien @cyclelikesedins