FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 4th, 2022
2022 OLYMPIC WINTER GAMES PRIMETIME OPENING CEREMONY NOTES & QUOTES ON NBC & PEACOCK
“This is an absolute honor of a lifetime. I can’t think of a more powerful and uniting moment as an athlete and as an American.” – Team USA flagbearer Brittany Bowe
“I remember in Salt Lake in 2002, I was more nervous to walk in the Opening Ceremony than I was to compete. It’s such an honor and there’s so much weight on your shoulders in that one moment.” – NBC Olympics correspondent Lindsey Vonn
Figure Skating Team Event Continues Saturday Night Live in Primetime at 8 p.m. ET on NBC and Peacock with Women’s Short Program
U.S. Women’s Hockey Team vs. Russian Olympic Committee Tomorrow Morning Live at 8:10 a.m. ET on USA Network and Peacock
Most Up-to-Date Olympic TV Listings on NBCOlympics.com
STAMFORD, Conn. – February 4, 2022 – NBC Olympics presented its enhanced coverage of the Opening Ceremony of the 2022 Winter Olympics from Beijing, China tonight on NBC and Peacock.
NBC Olympics’ primetime host Mike Tirico was joined by Savannah Guthrie, award-winning journalist and co-anchor of TODAY. Guthrie served as host for her second Opening Ceremony, while Tirico handled his third after the pair worked together on the Tokyo Olympics.
Andy Browne, the Editorial Director of Bloomberg New Economy Forum, and Jing Tsu, the John M. Schiff Professor of East Asian Studies & Comparative Literature at Yale University and author of Kingdom of Characters — a book about the politics of the Chinese language – contributed to coverage of the Opening Ceremony, providing a broader context for the U.S. audience.
NBC Olympics correspondents Steve Kornacki, NBC News’ celebrated national political correspondent, and Lindsey Vonn, a three-time Olympic medal winning skier for the U.S., also offered commentary.
NBC Olympics’ bobsled, luge, and skeleton reporter Lewis Johnson and figure skating and short track speed skating reporter Andrea Joyce served as reporters.
Highlights of upcoming coverage from the 2022 Winter Olympics on the networks of NBCUniversal include:
- The 2018 gold medal-winning U.S. women’s ice hockey team – headlined by Kendall Coyne Schofield, Hilary Knight, and Amanda Kessel – continues its gold medal defense in opening round play against the Russian Olympic Committee tomorrow (Sat., Feb. 5) live at 8:10 a.m. ET on USA Network and Peacock;
- The women’s short program portion of the figure skating team event is expected to be led by 2018 Olympian Karen Chen and will be presented tomorrow live in primetime at 8 p.m. ET on NBC and Peacock;
- The women’s snowboarding slopestyle final – expected to include medal contender Jamie Anderson – airs tomorrow live at 8:30 p.m. ET on USA Network and Peacock (encore at Midnight ET on NBC);
- Two-time Olympic gold medalist and the winningest slalom skier in World Cup history Mikaela Shiffrin is expected to compete in the women’s giant slalom Sunday live in primetime at 7 p.m. ET on NBC and Peacock.
Following are highlights from NBC’s primetime coverage of the 2022 Winter Olympics Opening Ceremony:
American speed skater and flag bearer Brittany Bowe to Tirico and Guthrie while walking in the Parade of Nations: “This is an absolute honor of a lifetime. I can’t think of a more powerful and uniting moment as an athlete and as an American, and it’s an absolute honor to lead Team USA into the Opening Ceremonies…It’s a dream come true.”
American curler and flag bearer John Shuster to Tirico and Guthrie: “This reminds me of my first Olympics, walking around the loop and at the very end of it we caught all of our families when they were there. For my kids to get to see this, pretty darn cool.”
Three-time Olympic medalist and NBC Olympics correspondent Lindsey Vonn on walking in the Opening Ceremony: “It’s such a nerve-wracking event. I mean, that’s really the first time you’re walking out onto the world stage as an Olympian representing your country. I remember in Salt Lake in 2002, I was more nervous to walk in the Opening Ceremony than I was to compete. It’s such an honor and there’s so much weight on your shoulders in that one moment.”
Vonn on Mikaela Shiffrin: “She’s coming into these Games having skied incredibly well in pretty much every discipline. She obviously has that huge rivalry with (Slovenia) Petra (Vlhová), but she is in a position to win medals in every race that she competes. It really now is just a management of schedule and if she has the energy to be able to compete in all five.”
American speed skater Erin Jackson to Lewis Johnson on what young girls and young Black girls may see in her: “I just try to be a good example whenever I can. And especially with young Black girls, and you know anyone, just with the Winter Olympics, you don’t see a whole lot of diversity, so I just hope I can be someone who they can see and be like, ‘Oh, maybe I can go out and try one of these sports.’ So, that would be awesome.”
Mike Tirico: “About 6,000 miles from Los Angeles on a frigid Friday night at the National Stadium in Beijing, China, where once again no international fans and the families of Team USA watching back at home, the Opening Ceremony of the 24th Olympic Winter Games takes place. Beijing, becoming the first city to host both a Summer and Winter Games. Fourteen years ago, this stadium was also where the 2008 Olympics opened in such stunning and memorable fashion. Tonight, the official start of these Games comes in a very different world, surrounded by many different questions. Nearly 3,000 athletes (from) Team USA and across the world in the middle of it all…We welcome you to Beijing. Just over six months ago in Tokyo, we said, ‘We’re about to embark on an Olympics unlike any other.’ Well, now we’re about to top that. It’s another Olympics, another gathering of the world in the midst of a global pandemic, and add in the host nation China’s place in global politics, the complexity of everything that’s set to take place over the next two weeks is significant.”
Savannah Guthrie: “There is unquestionably more controversy and complications around these Games than any in our lifetimes, and it all surrounds these athletes from 91 delegations. Start with Covid — what athletes have had to navigate to get here even beyond the competitive aspect of becoming the best of the best in their sport and qualifying, well, it is staggering. Quarantines for weeks, even months, intense protocols, testing, paperwork, and this all before you even get to the question of politics, always an undeniable part of the Games, but here much, much more intensely. The U.S. has issued a diplomatic boycott of these Games, not sending any government officials as a statement against China’s human rights transgressions.”
NBC Olympics contributor Andy Browne on today’s China vs. when they hosted the 2008 Olympics: “In 2008, it was the people of Beijing that made these Olympics. It was their coming out party, it was their celebration. They were joining the world, and they were so proud to show foreign visitors this spectacular new city with its futuristic architecture, its new music, its new style. China was the freest I had ever experienced it. Journalists for the first time could travel all over the country completely freely.”
NBC Olympics contributor Jing Tsu: “The world is certainly a chillier place now, and it is not just the season. In 2008, China was a new world player, it was still finding its legs on the international stage. It wanted to tell everything about itself. They had a history, they had a present. And now, I think we’re in a very different place where it has become a global dominant power. Whether you ask people in the war room, press room, boardroom or classroom, I think we all agree that China and the U.S. are in a competition of systems.”
ABOUT NBC OLYMPICS
NBCUniversal provdes coverage of the 2022 Olympic Winter Games from Feb. 2-20. The Opening Ceremony was presented on Friday, Feb. 4, live in the morning and again in primetime on NBC and Peacock. Similar to recent Winter Games, NBC’s primetime Olympic coverage began the night before the Opening Ceremony on Thursday, Feb. 3. Coverage begins on Wednesday, Feb. 2, on USA Network and Peacock. NBCUniversal is presenting its 18th Olympic Games, 12th consecutive overall, and sixth straight Winter Games, all the most by any U.S. media company.
— NBC OLYMPICS —