Nancy Kerrigan & Tonya Harding: 20 Years Later

Nancy Kerrigan & Tonya Harding: 20 Years Later

So what happened to Harding? Since the Kerrigan attack, the former skater has been regularly in the news, throwing hubcaps at boyfriends, being cited for drunk driving, serving time for tax evasion, starring in exploitation films and appearing on celebrity boxing.   She was even called out by Obama during his first presidential campaign when he joked about negative campaigning by saying he wouldn't  kneecap the person ahead of him and do "a Tonya Harding."  (btw, she slammed Obama during a subsequent interview for his remark).

A good story, however, is never just black and white and almost always has more than two sides. Those who want to know more about what may have compelled Harding  should check out ESPN’s documentary The Price of Gold.  The film sheds new light on the narrative of how one American skater triumphed against adversity while the other sank to the bottom. Part tabloid cover-story, The Price of Gold  focuses primarily on Harding, whose quest to become the best skater in the world was so obviously tied to her desperate need for validation that it plays like a Greek tragedy. While Kerrigan cannot be faulted for the attack,  Harding's motivations -- and the pressure many athletes face -- may surprise some viewers.  

Was the incident one of the worst train wrecks in sporting history? Perhaps. An anniversary worth celebrating? Not really.  But only something as weirdly true and impossibly real as the Harding-Kerrigan drama could remain newsworthy for 20 long years.

 

 

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