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Olympic preview: Women's moguls

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By: Getty Images By: Getty Images
By: Shawn Smith

The Winter Olympics are getting underway this week, but you don't have to wait until after the Opening Ceremony to start watching actual competitions. Mogul skiing will be one the first events to get underway and can be seen Thursday night in the U.S. (or Friday morning in South Korea).

Thursday's competition will be the first of two qualifying rounds. In order to ensure that no one gets eliminated before the Opening Ceremony, qualifying was split across two separate days, with the second qualifying round taking place on Sunday right before the finals.

The field for women's moguls has a lot of medal contenders, but no clear-cut favorite, which should add quite a bit of drama to this competition.

How to Watch

NBCOlympics.com will be streaming every round of every competition live online. Links to each stream are below.

Qualifying Rd. 1: Thursday, Feb. 8, 8:00 p.m. ET
LIVE EVENT STREAM

Qualifying Rd. 2: Sunday, Feb. 11, 5:30 a.m. ET
LIVE EVENT STREAM

Final: Sunday, Feb. 11, 7:00 a.m. ET
LIVE EVENT STREAM

The Americans

Who's competing: Jaelin Kauf, Morgan Schild, Keaton McCargo, Tess Johnson

Ever since two-time Olympic medalist Hannah Kearney retired, the U.S. has been searching for someone to fill her shoes. Entering the PyeongChang Olympics, Team USA has not one, but at least two rising stars with podium potential.

Jaelin Kauf is a speedster. Thanks to her fast times down the moguls course, she is currently enjoying a breakout season. The daughter of two professional mogul skiers, Kauf has already won a pair of World Cup events and currently leads the overall standings for the first time in her career.

Morgan Schild is technical on the jumps. She has tricks, such as the cork 720, that are among the most difficult and progressive in the field. Schild had a pair of third-place finishes at World Cup events in January.

Keaton McCargo and 17-year-old Tess Johnson round out the deep U.S. team. Both skiers are ranked inside the top 10 of this year's World Cup standings.

The International Field

Here are a few names to know when it comes to the rest of the world.

Justine and Chloe Dufour-Lapointe, Canada: The sisters who finished 1-2 at the last Winter Olympics. Maxime, the third member of the Dufour-Lapointe trio, did not make the Olympic team this year, but she'll definitely be cheering on her younger sisters. Justine has finished in the top four of the World Cup rankings every year since first hitting the circuit back in 2011.

Andi Naude, Canada: The most consistent skier on the Canadian team this season. In seven events so far, Naude has not finished lower than sixth. She's currently ranked No. 2 behind Jaelin Kauf in the World Cup standings.

Britt Cox, Australia: The reigning moguls World Cup champion. Cox looked like a surefire gold medal favorite after last year's dominant season — she won seven out of 11 competitions — but is ranked just No. 4 this year. Still though, Cox has won two World Cup events this season and will be a top contender in her third Olympic appearance.

Perrine Laffont, France: No. 2 in last year's World Cup rankings, currently No. 3 in this year's rankings. Laffont won a silver medal for moguls at last year's world championships, as well as a gold medal in the non-Olympic discipline of dual moguls.

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