o the final round of the British Op

o the final round of the British Op


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KINGSTON, Ont. Colin Miller Jersey . - The infectious smile was missing from Nam Nguyen last week. A favourite to win the Canadian mens title for the first time, the 16-year-old from Toronto was feeling the pressure. So his coach Brian Orser told him: Skate like you own the place. And Nguyen did. Nguyen, who won fans and melted hearts when he participated in the skating gala of the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, as a precocious, bespectacled 10-year-old, scored 81.78 points to top a field that was missing three-time world champion Patrick Chan. Orser admitted Nguyen had a mini-meltdown last week. The young skater, whos fuelled by a sheer love of performing, wasnt loving anything. Weve done the junior worlds and senior worlds and its always been sort of in the hunt, and this time, theres been a lot of talk about him, a chance he could win, all that stuff, and hes starting to feel the pressure, Orser said. But thats life, thats the way it is. So we just had to put it into perspective, but I know exactly the feeling that he was going through. So I think just that discussion helped, his shoulders dropped a little bit. Nguyen admitted to nerves when he took the ice, but he hid them well, landing a beautiful triple Axel, then a triple Lutz-triple toe loop combination, and triple flip for virtually the only clean program in an event riddled with spills. Jeremy Ten of Vancouver scored 77.80 points to stand second, while Roman Sadovsky, a 15-year-old from Vaughan, Ont., goes into Saturdays long program in third after scoring 73.46. Kevin Reynolds of Coquitlam, B.C., a three-time national silver medallist and member of Canadas team that won silver at last years Olympics in Sochi, fell on all three of his jumps to finish a disappointing 12th in the mens short. Nguyen has risen swiftly through the ranks, winning the world junior championships last spring, and then finishing third and fourth in his two senior Grand Prix events this season — Canadas top performance in mens singles. He has a really big season from last year to live up to, Orser said. The absence of Chan added to the pressure this season. Suddenly, the title was anyones for the taking. Chan, whod won the seven previous titles — including 2012, when he scored a whopping 101.33 points in the short program — is taking the season off to contemplate his future. Nguyen said the key to his success was Stay normal, dont change anything, treat everything like its a practice at the (Toronto) Cricket Club. Nguyen, who was the youngest skater to win Canadian titles at the juvenile, pre-novice-novice, and junior levels, has finally settled into his five-foot-eight frame, as well, after a growth spurt saw him shoot up more than a half a foot in a year. It was really hard for me to get my jumps, especially my triple Axel because during that time, I lost it, Nguyen said of his growth spurt. After that, I started regaining my Axel, fixing my technique and now when I have a little bit of a growth spurt going on, I know how to deal with it and know I have to push through it. Nguyen looks back on his innocence at the Vancouver Olympics — when he skated in checked pants and big goofy glasses in a role that was meant to represent the future of skating — with fondness. He didnt know pressure then. I was just trying to have fun, Nguyen said. Im actually trying to keep the same mindset for myself, even though I am aware of the pressure now. Hes also aware of his growing popularity. His Twitter page — he goes by the handle @namnamnoodle — has 7,719 followers. He has a big fan following in Asia, Orser said. Ive never had this kind of attention on me, Nguyen said. Its kind of exciting for me, but also a little bit distracting. So I needed to ignore some of it, and also have some of that motivate me in practice sessions whenever Im feeling down. . . so for me Im feeling both. It was a disastrous afternoon for Reynolds, who has had problems with ill-fitting skates for the better part of two seasons, and had just a month of solid training before arriving here. Nothing much to say. I gave it everything that I had this last year to give it a shot for this national title, and tried the best that I could, and I failed, Reynolds said. Nothing much more to say. Reynolds has had trouble finding skates that fit his uniquely narrow foot, and said last week he felt he had finally found a pair after trying skates of every brand. Incredibly disappointing to say the least, he said, fighting back tears Friday. I want to apologize to all the people who have supported me through all of this, because they didnt deserve that performance from me. All I can say is I did the best that I could. Reynolds announced late on Friday that he has withdrawn from the remainder of the competition. Ten, meanwhile, decided to give his sport one last season after battling injuries for the better part of a few years. When I made the decision to do this season, I had a great chat with Ted Barton, who works for our B.C. office, and he said Would it be worth it to stay one more season and go to nationals knowing your numbers are limited at the age that youre at, to experience what its like to compete on a national stage in front of a Canadian audience, does that seem worth it to you? And it does, at that moment it clicked, Ten said. Marc-Andre Fleury Jersey . -- A.J. Burnett was happy to escape from New York. Vegas Golden Knights Pro Shop .J. -- Jaromir Jagr has hit so many NHL milestones this season for the New Jersey Devils that he is starting to downplay them.LOUISVILLE, Ky. -- Rory McIlroy stood over a 10-inch putt in gathering darkness to win the PGA Championship as flashes from thousands of camera lit up Valhalla like a rock concert. Everyone wanted to capture a moment from golfs latest coronation. In his biggest test, McIlroy played his best golf Sunday to win his second straight major and establish himself as golfs next star. And what a stage. The final major was pure theatre with an All-Star cast -- Phil Mickelson, Rickie Fowler, Henrik Stenson all with a share of the lead on the back nine. The final two hours were filled with eagles and birdies, with tension and chaos. McIlroy never had to sweat so much to win one of golfs biggest events. And thats what made this major so much sweeter. "It is the most satisfying," McIlroy said. "To win it in this fashion and this style, it means a lot. It means that I know that I can do it. I know that I can come from behind. I know that I can mix it up with the best players in the world down the stretch in a major and come out on top." The final par -- the easiest shot he faced all day -- gave McIlroy a 3-under 68 to outlast Mickelson by a stroke and beat the darkness that threatened to spoil this show. He became only the fourth player in the last century to win four majors at 25 or younger. The others were Tiger Woods, Jack Nicklaus and Bobby Jones, three of the games greatest players. Boy Wonder appears on his way to belonging in that group. "I didnt think in my wildest dreams Id have a summer like this," said McIlroy, only the seventh player to win the last two majors of the year. "I played the best golf of my life. I really gutted it out today." But one of the greatest shows on soggy turf came with a most peculiar ending. Three shots behind as he stood in the 10th fairway, McIlroy got back in the game with a 3-wood from 281 yards into 7 feet for eagle. He took the outright lead when all three of his challengers eventually made bogey, and finally gave himself some breathing room. With a 9-iron from a fairway bunker to 10 feet for birdie on the 17th, he took a two-shot lead going to the par-5 closing hole. Because of a two-hour rain delay earlier, darkness was falling quickly and it wasnt certain McIlroy would be able to finish. McIlroy was allowed to hit his tee shot before Mickelson and Fowler had reached their drives. Both were only two shots behind, still in the game. McIlroy came within a yard of hitting in a hazard right of the fairway. Then, the PGA of America allowed McIlroy to hit his second shot. Mickelson and Fowler had to stand to the side of the green. "We were cool with hitting the tee shot," Fowwler said. Vegas Golden Knights Gear. "We werent expecting the approach shots." Fowler had a 50-foot eagle attempt to tie for the lead. He was well off the mark, and missed the short birdie putt attempt that cost him his third straight runner-up finish in a major. Mickelson was short of the green, and his chip came within inches of dropping for an eagle that would have tied him for the lead. Mickelson appeared upset that they had to wait to finish the hole -- not standard procedure in a PGA Tour event -- and he made two references in a TV interview that this is the only championship the PGA of America runs all year. "It didnt affect the outcome of the championship at all, I dont think," Mickelson said. "Its not what we normally do. Its not a big deal either way." Mickelson closed with a 66 and was runner-up for the ninth time in a major. Fowler became the first player in history to finish in the top five at all four majors without winning one. He closed with a 68 and tied for third with Stenson, who fell out of a share of the lead by missing a 3-foot par putt on the 14th hole. Stenson shot a 66. McIlroy hit his second shot into a bunker, and he had to two-putt from 35 feet for the win. He lagged the first one to tap-in range, and the major was his. McIlroy repeatedly pumped his fist before letting out a scream above the gallery that had been treated to a Sunday it wont soon forget. McIlroy won his first two majors by eight shots at the 2011 U.S. Open and 2012 PGA Championship. Only a month ago, McIlroy took a six-shot lead into the final round of the British Open and completed a wire-to-wire win with only a brief scare. This was different. "I think I showed a lot of guts out there to get the job done," he said. It might not have been possible without a 3-wood on the par-5 10th hole. McIlroy watched Fowler make a 30-foot birdie putt ahead of him for the outright lead and knew it was time to get going. He hit his 3-wood lower than he wanted, and further to the left than he wanted, but it turned out perfect. Once he joined the leaders with a birdie on the 13th, none of the contenders made another birdie the rest of the way until it was too late. All that was left after an exhausting day of raw emotions was for McIlroy to summon enough energy to hoist the 27-pound Wanamaker Trophy. He crouched before the presentation, trying to collect his thoughts at the last month. Not since Woods in 2008 has anyone won three straight tournaments, and they were big ones -- the British Open, a World Golf Championship and the PGA Championship. He played them in a combined 48-under par. "Hes better than everyone else right now," Mickelson said. ' ' '