AP NEWS

USA Luge’s Mazdzer needs offseason shoulder, elbow surgeries

February 29, 2020 GMT

Olympic men’s silver medalist Chris Mazdzer will have shoulder and elbow surgeries after Sunday’s World Cup luge finale. He’s been told he’ll need between two and three months of rehabilitation before he can fully prepare for next season.

Mazdzer will race in the men’s competition Sunday at Konigssee, Germany, and team with doubles partner Jayson Terdiman as part of the USA Luge entry in the season-ending team relay. Surgery, first on his right shoulder, will await upon his return to the U.S.

If all goes to plan, Mazdzer hopes after rehab he’ll resume training by mid-May.

“That’s enough time to get ready for the season,” said Mazdzer, the 2018 men’s singles silver medalist at the Pyeongchang Olympics.

Mazdzer — the lone racer on the top international circuit competing in singles and doubles luge — has dealt with injury issues for much of this season. He and Terdiman were a season-best seventh in the final doubles race of the season on Saturday.

That was the best USA Luge doubles finish at Konigssee in a decade, and Terdiman said it will provide a shot of momentum going into the offseason.

“I’m very much looking forward to getting back in the weight room, after some time off, and working on my strength and explosiveness this summer,” Terdiman said. “With Chris getting cleaned up this spring, I want to be able to come out of the gates with a fire next season and really see what we can do.”

Mazdzer will have another surgery in mid-March to get a tendon in his forearm reattached to his elbow.

“I cannot wait for that,” Mazdzer said. “It’s been bugging me for like seven months now.”

Other offseason plans for Mazdzer and Terdiman include working on sleds and setups, another area that didn’t exactly go as they wished this season.

But Mazdzer points out that getting healthy is the first priority.

“We’re going to have our work cut out for us next summer,” Mazdzer said. “Definitely, next season’s results will be based off the work we put in this summer. And I’m confident that we will be in a better place starting next season and just building from there.”