After being offered a position as an NBC correspondent for the remainder of the 2018 PyeongChang Olympics, U.S. figure skater Adam Rippon told Olympic Ice that he turned down the offer.
The golden boy of the Internet (and bronze medalist in team figure skating) told NBCSN that, even though he was flattered by the opportunity, he wanted to retain his status as an Olympic athlete and stay in the Olympic Village.
Even after his rise to fame (three strong skates, a slew of hilarious one-liners and a vibrant personality will do that), Rippon is still focused on skating and his teammates. Team USA still has three ice dance teams and three women left to compete, and Rippon didn’t want to miss out on any of the remaining Olympic action.
“I worked so hard to be on this Olympic team, and my teammates and my friends were there for me during my events,” Rippon said. “That meant so much to me that I really feel like I need to be there for them during their events as well.”
Rippon has been vocal about how close he is with teammates, especially skater Mirai Nagasu (who will begin her individual competition on Tuesday night in Primetime). The two are apartment-mates in the Olympic village, and they watched the 2014 Sochi Games – which neither qualified for – together while eating their feelings.
In 2010, Rippon was an alternate skater at the Vancouver Games and never made his Olympic debut. After not making the 2014 Sochi team, he came back blazing in the seasons leading up to PyeongChang. Though he did not finish in the top three at 2018 Nationals, like a witch who can’t be killed, Rippon’s overall body of work was considered stronger than silver medalist Ross Miner, and he skated his way onto Team USA.