Olympic Gold Medalist Evan Lysacek is not kidding around. He's accepted invitations to two Grand Prix events and he's back training with the coach who led him to an Olympic gold medal, Frank Carroll (according to the Chicago Tribune).
While Lysacek told Carroll he wanted to wait until the fall to decide whether he actually would compete at Skate America, the coach thinks it is likely.
"Knowing Evan, of course he will," Carroll said. "Once he makes up his mind to do something, he does it."
The ultimate goal would be the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.
Lysacek's publicist, Lynn Plage, said Monday the two-time U.S. champion does not want to make a formal announcement of his intentions until later this summer.
I think Lysacek's competitive nature simply won't allow him to sit out while he still has a chance to be competitive. However, though there has only been one season since Lysacek took Olympic gold, things have changed. Canadian world champ Patrick Chan is now a dominant force and lands multiple quad per competition, along with receiving the highest program components in the field. It will be hard for a quad-less Lysacek to challenge Chan (although I think Lysacek would be competitive with pretty much anyone else).
Still, it may be good for the United States to have a competitor like Lysacek back in the game. He rises to the occasion when the international pressure is on, unlike some of our other best skaters. Lysacek says he is ok with not winning the Olympics again, and his goal is the fulfillment process of getting there. I'm not sure how I feel about one of the most competitive skaters in the world saying he doesn't mind not winning. But, according to the article, Lysacek has a LOT of work to do:
Carroll said Lysacek has yet to choose music and needs a lot of work on the triple jumps he was not doing in shows.
After one day of training last week, Lysacek was so stiff and sore he needed to take the next day off. Carroll expects the skater back at the rink Tuesday.
It would be exciting to see Lysacek compete again. Hopefully it will help push our other less experienced skaters to be better and allow some of the more experienced underperforming skaters will gain more focus. But it may have no effect on anyone but Lysacek. I'll be interested to see what he's got when he comes back. (Only, I wish it were a quad!).