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Plushenko to compete in figure skating at 2014 Olympics after all

Evgeni Plushenko
Evgeni Plushenko
Dean Mouhtaropoulos, Getty Images

According to Lawrence Yee of Yahoo! Sports on Tuesday, Russian Olympic gold medalist Evgeni Plushenko will compete for Russia in men's figure skating at the 2014 Olympic Winter Games in Sochi.

Plushenko, who won the gold medal in men's singles at the 2006 Olympic Winter Games in Turin, will be awarded as Russia's only entry. An official announcement is expected Thursday.

Plushenko was chosen over Maxim Kovtun even though Kovtun placed higher than Plushenko at the Russian National Championships in December.

Kovtun was left off the Russian Olympic team after he had a fifth place finish at the 2014 European Figure Skating Championships in Budapest, Hungary. Plushenko meanwhile had an excellent test skate on Tuesday.

If healthy, Plushenko could contend for an Olympic medal in not only the team competition for Russia, but the men's competition as well. Patrick Chan of Ottawa, Ontario is the three-time defending world men's figure skating champion, but has been inconsistent in recent years executing his jumps and is far from a lock to become the first Canadian ever to win Olympic gold in men's figure skating.

Plushenko will have to be ready to compete quite quickly. That is because the team figure skating competition is one of three events that will take place prior to the Opening Ceremonies, joining qualification for women's moguls and qualification for men's and women's slopestyle snowboarding.