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Road to Sochi/Bode Miller

(News Senior Sports Columnist Jerry Sullivan is profiling U.S. athletes leading up to the Olympic Winter Games in Sochi, which begin Feb. 7)


Miller, 36, will be competing in his fifth Olympics and looking to add to his legend as the most successful male alpine skiier in U.S. history. He's a two-time overall World Cup champion with 33 career wins. He is one of five men to win a World Cup event in all five disciplines. Miller has won five Olympic medals, including one of each color in the 2010 Games in Vancouver.

Skeptics throught Miller might be done as a major international competitor when he missed 20 months, including all of the 2013 season, while recovering from micro-fracture surgery on his left knee. But he came back with renewed confidence this season. He lost 20 pounds and none of his signature swagger, declaring "I'm going to kick ass."

Miller appears to be peaking just in time for Sochi, where he intends to compete in several events. Last Sunday, he finished second in the Super-G at Kitzbuehel, Austria. Some observers believe he is rounding into shape to be a serious medal contender in Russia.

The New Hampshire native is rarely lacking for drama. After struggling at the '06 Olympics, he said he had partied at "an Olympic level". A noted non-conformist, he has feuded with the national and international ski associations. He once suggested that "some performance-enhancing drug" should be legal. But he's been one of the most relentless competitors the sport has known.

"You're renting a title until someone else takes it away," Miller said recently. "So if you're too attached to it, you're going to be bummed out when your rental agreement runs out. I think I've done well. I look back on it and I wouldn't change very much."







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