2014 Sochi Olympics: My 14 Crushes of the Winter Games

February 26, 2014

Oh, hey everyone.

I’m back out from inside the cave that is my campus house, where I spent the last two and a half weeks watching the Winter Olympics.

I know I posted on the Around The Corn Facebook page that I was going to cover the Games both on this site and Bleacher Report. So sorry that fell apart.

However, while watching all the events (and I do mean all of them…ask my roommates what they think of pairs figure skating now), I was making mental notes of all the female athletes who I now have a crush on for one reason or another.

Those of you who know me well are aware that this is not a new procedure. I have made my love of 2008 gold and silver medalist Shawn Johnson public knowledge, doing just about everything other than asking her to my senior prom (I do, however, know of someone who tried that. Screw that guy.).

What I’m about to share with you will not quite be on the same level as the affection that I hold for Miss Johnson. Rather, many of these young women may have done something in the past couple of weeks that made me think that they are pretty cool, or rad, or awesome.

Don’t get it twisted, though. I still find all of them attractive. But for all you ladies out there reading it thinking “Oh my gosh, K. Becks is such a pig! He only views women in a sexual manner.” Shut up. Seriously. Go back to looking at pictures of Ryan Lochte.

So here they are: my 14 crushes of the XXII Winter Olympiad, in no particular order.

1. Jamie Anderson, United States snowboarder

It’s easy to get on board with a gold medalist, especially when she’s the first for the sport of snowboard slopestyle in the Winter Olympics. But what’s a little more difficult to get on board with? A snowboarder who enjoys moments of “Zen” and listens to meditation music before runs.

Not for this guy. Jamie is cool, and her alternative to what you’d expect from an extreme sports athlete is even cooler.

2. Justine and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe, Canadian freestyle skiers

In one of my favorite moments of the Games, 19-year old Justine and 22-year old Chloe were captured holding hands on the podium. Justine had just won gold and Chloe silver in the women’s moguls event.

If there is anything better than representing your country on the big stage, it’s representing your family in such a way.

3. Mikaela Shiffrin, United States alpine skier

The 18-year old came into the Sochi Olympics with a lot of pressure, and handled it better than a lot of American skiers in past Olympics.

Not only did she win gold in women’s slalom event, but she did so in a very classy fashion, not saying a whole lot other than the fact that she would like to win five gold medals in the next Olympics.

A girl with ambition is always attractive.

4. The Russian women’s curling team

I’ll admit, I sort of lost interest in the women’s curling event after these ladies were eliminated.

Seriously, how is it possible to assemble a group of elite athletes that are all gorgeous? Especially Anna Sidorova.

5. Eve Muirhead, Great Britain curler

Speaking of curling, this gal actually led her team to a bronze medal. I was a bit surprised to be attracted to a British athlete, even more so one from Scotland.

Upon hearing this, my dad asked “for a Scot? You expected them all to be gingers with bad teeth or something? It’s a whole f-ing country!!!”

Well, yes, dad. I believe everything I see on television.

6. Noelle Pikus-Pace, United States skeleton slider

The mama of two, who came back to the sport despite a nasty accident in 2005 and a miscarriage of a third child, finally got the Olympic medal that has eluded her throughout her career.

Her reaction to winning a medal was priceless, and the commercial about her leading up to the Games was powerful as well.

Pikus-Pace is without a doubt one of my favorite athletes from the Sochi Olympics, woman or man.

7. Lindsey Jacobellis, United States snowboarder

After the 2006 Torino Olympics, I wasn’t a huge fan of Lindsey. I thought her showboating cost her a gold medal in women’s snowboardcross.

But after learning more about the sport and watching her flat out dominate since that time, I feel really, really badly for Jacobellis after her most recent disappointment. The 28-year old is clearly one of the most mature competitors in her sport, and is still the best, whether she has an Olympic gold medal to prove it or not.

Plus, she adopted a stray dog she found in Sochi. That wins me over every time.

8. Torah Bright, Australia snowboarder

I’ve followed snowboarding for long enough to have known who Torah was before the Sochi Games. But what I didn’t know is that she’d end up being the hardest working athlete in her sport during the 2014 Winter Olympics.

Bright competed in the women’s halfpipe, snowboardcross and slopestyle competitions in Sochi, making her the only triple threat on either the women’s or men’s side.

Despite only being a true medal contender in the halfpipe competition (she won silver), she clearly values the experience aspect of the Games, which is comforting to know actually exists amongst the elite athletes.

9. Aliona Savchenko, Germany figure skater

Okay, I really only included Aliona because I think she’s hot.

But come on…did you see her in that “Pink Panther” bodysuit? Tell me I’m wrong.

10. Tatiana Volosozhar, Russia ice dancer

Tatiana wins my Tanith Belbin Award, which is awarded to the hottest ice dancer of the Games.

If you’re confused as to who Tanith Belbin is, I urge you to go and look her up. Right. Now.

11. Kate Hansen, United States luger

Hansen wasn’t all that close to a medal in Sochi (she finished 10th in her event), but she did steal the spotlight during coverage of the women’s luge event thanks to a rather large repertoire of dance moves she uses to warm up.

Kate was also a key player in Jimmy Kimmel’s prank in which a wolf allegedly found its way into the hallway of one of the Olympic Village dorms.

A girl who can dance and has a sense of humor? Sold.

12. Anna Cappellini, Italy ice dancer

She already has a place in my heart for being Italian, but Anna also defies something that drives me crazy about couples who have broken up.

Cappellini and her partner Luca Lanotte used to date before becoming a pair on the ice. And…gasp!…they’re okay with it.

I’m not going to go on a rant or say that one former couple’s situation should dictate the norm. But next time I hear someone say they can’t be in the presence of a former lover because it brings up too many memories, dear Anna will be thrust into the conversation.

13. Sarah Hendrickson, United States ski jumper

Sarah didn’t make any huge waves during the Olympics, but she’s just so damn cute.

And that’s all I have to say about that.

14. Silje Norendal, Norway snowboarder

Not much could make someone in the United States want to move to Norway, but Silje qualifies as reason enough for me.

– K. Becks

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