The U.S. men’s curling team, coming off back-to-back Olympics finishing near the bottom of the tournament, looks to complete a stunning turnaround by winning its first-ever gold medal.
Teenager Red Gerard, who won America’s first gold in Pyeongchang, looks to add more hardware to his collection.
Snowboarder Ester Ledecka from the Czech Republic, who shocked everyone (including herself) by winning a skiing gold medal, will try to match it with a medal in her native sport.
There will be plenty of excitement in Pyeonchang on Saturday (starting Friday night in the U.S.). Here are our must-watch events:
Team USA’s Curlers Sweep on for Gold
Four days ago, the men’s U.S. curling team was near bottom of the round robin standings with a 2-4 record, needing three consecutive wins — including a win against arch-rival Canada, a team they’d never beat in the Olympics — to have a chance at advancement.
What a difference four days makes.
The Americans beat Canada, won their next two games, then beat Canada again to advance to the gold medal match for the first time ever.
The United States will face Sweden for the gold.
“It’s unbelievable,” said John Landsteiner, one of Team USA’s four curlers. “I think we are going to play even better (in the gold medal game), because there’s pressure of ‘what if we get fourth?’ (or) ‘what if we walk away with nothing?’ With that pressure gone and the desire to get gold over silver, I’m excited for what that game is going to be like.”
Sweden will be a tough match. The Swedes beat Switzerland 9-3 in their semifinal to reach this game, and beat the Americans 10-4 early in round robin play.
No matter what happens, this will be American’s best-ever finish in Olympic curling. Team USA won bronze in 2006, but finished 10th and ninth in the last two Olympics.
How to Watch: Watch live at 1:35 a.m. Saturday on NBCSN and digital platforms right here.
Red Gerard Tries to Bookend Pyeongchang in Gold
Red Gerard won America’s first gold medal. Can he win one of America’s last, too?
Gerard won gold in the men’s slopestyle on Feb. 11. He then flew back to the United States, appeared on a handful of national TV programs, flew back to South Korea, and qualified for the big air snowboarding final.
“There were a ton of people coming up to me in the States, that's when I realized the viewing is much more than just the snowboarding community,” Gerard told USA Today. “It's a world thing.”
Can the 17-year-old win another gold?
Canadians Max Parrot and Mark McMorris, who finished just behind Gerard for silver and bronze in slopestyle, will be his biggest competition in the big air, an event making its Olympic debut in Pyeongchang. Parrot was the first ever to land a quad underfed in a competition. McMorris, back after a horrific, life-threatening crash into a tree while snowboarding, won bronze medals in slopestyle in Sochi and Pyeongchang.
Chris Corning, a silver medalist at last year’s world championships, and Kyle Mack, who won bronze medals in both slopestyle and big air at the 2015 World Championships, could also make the podium for the United States.
How to Watch: Watch live on NBC’s primetime coverage beginning Friday at 8 p.m. ET or on digital platforms right here.
Make Way for the Mass of Skaters
Speedskating takes on a whole new look with the Olympic debut of the mass start.
Out is the usual format, in which pairs of skaters race around the oval. In is the mass start, of up to 24 competitors race at the same time.
“Mass start’s amazing, because as soon as you cross the line, you know who first, second and third are,” said Joey Mantia, a medal favorite for Team USA in the men’s event. “It’s easy to follow. It’s just traditional racing.”
Mantia won the event at the 2017 world championships, but he should get stiff competition from South Korea’s Lee Seung-hoon, a three-time Olympic medalist who switched from short track.
In the women’s race, Americans Heather Bergsma and Mia Manganello, who both won bronze in the team pursuit, will be competing. South Korea’s Kim Bo-reum, who also switched from short track, and Germany’s Claudia Pechstein could also contend for medals.
“I really enjoy it because you have to have a tactic with it,” Bergsma said. “Not only the fastest person wins. Someone can break away from the group, or it can be an end sprint. You never know.”
How to Watch: Watch live on digital platforms Saturday at 6 a.m. Saturday ET right here, or watch coverage on NBCSN at 9:30 a.m. ET Saturday.
Explaining the Olympic Debut of the Alpine Team Event
A new Olympic event teams up each country’s best skiers, letting them compete as a team in a bracket-style format featuring head-to-head slalom races (two men and two women per round) to try to win gold.
One problem: The sport's biggest stars are passing on it because the skiing World Cup season resumes in Europe next week and most of the top skiers have already left Pyeongchang to prepare for it.
Americans Mikaela Shiffrin (gold and silver medals in Pyeonchang), Lindsey Vonn (bronze medal) and Ted Ligety all said they will not compete in the alpine team event. Austria’s Marcel Hirscher (two gold medals) is passing. Norway’s Aksel Lund Svindal (gold medal) and Kjetil Jansrud (silver, bronze) are skipping it too.
NBC10 Boston Winter Games analyst and former Olympic skier Pam Fletcher took some time this week to explain the nuances and strategy of this new event.
How to Watch: You can watch the event on NBC10 Boston's live primetime television coverage Friday at 8 p.m. You can also watch it live on digital platforms right here.
'She's Top Notch': Danvers Celebrates Hometown Hero Meghan Duggan After US Hockey Win
The Osborn Tavern in Danvers, Massachusetts, stayed open into the early morning hours on Thursday so people could watch their hometown hero Meghan Duggan play for the Olympic hockey gold medal across the globe in Pyeonchang.
"Megs is awesome," said Brian Marshall, a long-time friend of the Duggan family. "She's, like, the all-American girl, and we've known her our whole lives. And she's top notch."
Following the U.S. team's dramatic win, Duggan was the toast of the tavern, as all of the cell phone video showed.
For NBC10 Boston reporter Cassy Arsenault's full story on the town's close connection with Duggan, click here.