American figure skater Jeremy Abbott stumbled on Thursday night during the 2014 Winter Games, but during a press conference on Friday, he didn’t falter as he delivered a blunt message to his haters.
The four-time U.S. figure skating champion took a painful fall during his short program, but after a few moments down on the ice, Abbott rose and finished his routine during the men’s individual figure skating event.
The crowd certainly appreciated Abbott’s commitment and resilience, but there were some critics who weren’t so impressed with the performance.
The fall was Abbott’s second of the Winter Games, and it prompted some to speculate that perhaps the two-time Olympian doesn’t have what it takes to succeed on the big stage. Abbott didn’t take kindly to that theory.
“I would just hold my middle finger in the air and say a big ‘F you’ to everyone who has ever said that to me because they have never stood in my shoes,” he said, according to Yahoo! Sports.
“They’ve never had to do what I had to do. Nobody has to stand center ice before a million people and put an entire career on the line for eight minutes of their life when they’ve been doing it for 20-some years. And if you don’t think that that’s not hard, you’re a damn idiot.
“So some people can handle it better than others, but everyone has that mental struggle, everyone goes through the same doubts. I am not alone. They just come at different times and different moments. Some people have their moment at the Olympics, and some have theirs at the national championships.
“I’m proud to be standing here. I’m a four-time national champion and a two-time Olympian, and no one can take that away from me. So whatever people have to say about me, that’s their own problem because I’m freaking proud of what I’ve done and I’m not going to apologize for any of it.”
Photo via Twitter/@insidethegames
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