figure skating

WATCH: Figure Skating's Pairs Final Comes Down to Nail-Biting Finish for Olympic Gold

The gold medal once again came down to less than one point

History did not repeat itself Saturday at the 2022 Winter Olympics pairs free skating final, but it nearly did as the gold medal once again came down to less than one point.

China's Sui Wenjing and Han Cong were the final skaters to take the ice in the event, with pressure mounting as they had to follow spectacular programs by Tarasova and Morozov and fellow Russian skaters Anastasia Mishina and Aleksandr Galliamov.

The two-time world champions had already shattered their own world record for a short program at the Beijing Games, giving them the narrowest of leads over rivals Tarasova and Morozov heading into the free skate to decide the Olympic champion.

But with a stunning finale from Tarasova and Morozov, the stakes were high.

Sui and Han won the short program at the 2018 Pyeongchang Games before settling for the silver medal, with a score less than a point from gold. In that Olympics, Sui and Han lost out on gold by 43 hundredths of a point.

In 2018, it all came down to a single jump. In 2022, it all came down to that same jump.

But despite a small stumble, the duo managed to edge out their Russian rivals by, once again, less than a point.

The Chinese pair finished with a score of 155.47, just above Tarasova and Morozov's 155. Combined with their short program scores, they ended with a score of 239.88, followed by Tarasova and Morozov at 239.25.

As they anxiously awaited their final score, the arena turned silent. But as the total was announced, the crowd, and the skaters, erupted.

Tarazova and Morozov, coached in part by the polarizing Eteri Tutberidze, silver while Mishina and Galliamov, the reigning world champions, scored 237.71 to earn the bronze medal and cap a strong — and controversial — Olympics for the Russians.

Team USA finished in sixth, with Illinois' Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier finishing as the top U.S. team.

NBC Chicago/Associated Press
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