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Plushenko Announces Retirement
By Sally Haase
February 13, 2014


             It was not the ending he was hoping for in the Winter Olympics in his home
country but Evgeni Plushenko had to withdraw from the men’s figure skating
competition Thursday due to a back injury.  After his withdraw, Plushenko
announced his retirement; ending one of the greatest careers in figure skating
history.

             The years of surgeries on his back has finally caught up to the 31 Russian
star who injured his back during warm ups before his short program.  Plushenko
tried to skate away the pain and attempted another jump; it then became clear that
his body would not be able to take the stress of another short program and free
skate.  However, Plushenko will not end his Olympic career empty handed, he lead
the Russian team to a gold medal victory in the first in its history figure skating team
event.  The gold in the team event gives Plushenko two gold and two silver medals
over four Olympics.  Plushenko is also a three time World Champion and a seven
time European Champion.

             When I watch Plushenko skate, I can see how special he was.  Every spin
and jump looked like it came natural to him.  He never looked like he was thinking
about his program or trying too hard like I have seen in other skaters.  He knew what
his body could do and he would let go and skate.  He really is one of the best figure
skaters to ever step on the ice.

             Plushenko has said he would like to become a coach after his skating
career is over, I think he would make a great one and he would have many young
Olympic hopefuls wanting to be his student.  It would not be a surprise to me if
Plushenko is back at the Olympics eight to 12 years from now as a coach.

             Thanks for all the amazing and effortless figure skating programs you gave
the world Mr. Plushenko, you did a lot for the figure skating world, now take some
time off to relax because you have earned it.
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