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Chloe Kim, the Shib Sibs + 7 other athletes to watch in Pyeongchang
The 2018 Winter Olympics kick off tomorrow in Pyeongchang and, TBH, we haven't been this excited about anything since, well, the last Olympic games!
The best of the best have come together to show us their skills and shred the competition. So before tomorrow's opening ceremony (catch it tomorrow at 8 p.m. GMT/6 a.m. EST on NBC), get to know these nine must-watch Olympians...
1. Chloe Kim
This 17-year-old snowboarder is rocking the halfpipe. This is her first time competiting in the Olympics and expectations are high. She ranked first in the 2016/2017 World Snowboarding Tour and is a three-time gold-metalist at the X Games. But off the snow, Kim is trilingual in Korean, French and English and loves fashion and beauty. She's always trying out new hair colors!
2. The Shib Sibs
This dynamic duo is ice-dancing their way to the top of the podium. Maia Shibutani, 23, and her brother Alex, 26, have been skating together since 2004. About 10 years later they finished ninth in the 2014 Sochi Olympics. Now they're back for more. When they're not training in Michigan, they're chronicaling their travels and adventures on their YouTube channel. Maia posted this video just a few days ago!
3. Adam Rippon
If you can believe it, Adam is the first openly gay American to qualify for the winter Olympics. This will be his first Olympics experience as member of Team USA, competing for the gold in figure skating. He almost gave up on his dream after not qualifying in 2014, but we're *so* glad he didn't. His signature move is the "Rippon Lutz," a triple Lutz where he puts both arms over his head. He also loves to sing! Catch his cover of "Diamonds" by Rihanna right HERE.
4. Maame Biney
Pronounced "MAH-may," this girl is the giggling short track speed skater from Ghana. She moved to Maryland when she was five years old and is now one of the youngest competitors on Team USA at 18 years old. In the future, she wants to be a chemical engineer, but right now she's focusing on securing a medal in Pyeongchang. With a permanent smile on her face, you can find her cheering on her teammates and spreading good vibes.
5. Nathan Chen
Another 18-year-old, Chinese-American Nathan is getting ready to sweep the competition in the figure skating category. Sports Illustrated predicts he'll be grabbing gold real soon. When he's not turning out quadruple spins, he also loves playing the piano (check out his skills here!).
6. Jaelin Kauf
Jaelin in a freestyle skiier from Wyoming and with two parents who are professional skiiers, Jaelin has been on the snow since she can remember. Now as a 21-year-old Olympian, she still takes her Curious George monkey—named George Junior—everywhere (because you're never too old for stuffed animals, right?). Besides skiing, she keeps herself busy with surfing, camping, hiking and yoga.
7. Jordan Greenway
Jordan is definitely on our watch list! This cutie is one of just 10 African Americans on Team USA, and the first one to compete on the hockey team. He hopes to inspire other kids to play hockey. When he's not going for gold, he loves to go boating and his favorite food is pizza—but c'mon, who *doesn't* love pizza?!
8. Chris Corning
Chris is pushing his way to the top in snowboarding, specifically in big air and slopestyle. Typically Norway and Canada are the ones on the podium, but Chris is bringing some serious competition to Pyeongchang. He's been shreading the slopes since he was just 7-years-old and now it's his chance to shine. After practice you can find him dirt biking or playing frisbee golf.
What's your favorite Winter Olympics competition? Let us know in the comments below!
Photo credit: People