Nathan Chen starts strong in team ice skating event at Winter Games

Chen looked ready to make up for his performance at the 2018 Winter Games. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip) (David J. Phillip/AP)

Three-time men’s figure skating world champion Nathan Chen has delivered a strong short program to open the team competition at the Beijing Games. That gets the Americans off to a good start in their pursuit of a third straight medal in the event.

Chen, who struggled in the team event in Pyeongchang, opened with a big quad flip and hit his difficult quad lutz-triple toe loop combination to deliver the highest score among the men Friday and give the U.S. the maximum 10 points.

Reigning Olympic silver medalist Shoma Uno was second to give Japan nine points. Eighteen-year-old Mark Kondratiuk was third for the Russian Olympic Committee, which is favored to win the team event.

The short program for ice dance and pairs are later Friday, then the teams get a day off before the women’s short program on Sunday. The top five teams after that advance to free skates for the medals Sunday and Monday.