Oh my goodness! So apparently Jeffery Buttle has decided to retire from Olympic Eligible competition...GASP! Let me make sure you're understanding this...The reigning World Champion, whose skating has never been better, is opting to leave eligible competition with the Olympics in his home nation in less than two years! Wow...I'm speechless!
In an interview with CBC News (Canada) he said, "After a few months, and after I recovered from the high, I decided to look at everything I've accomplished. And coming to this decision, I had to make sure that I was proud and satisfied with everything that I've done. At that point, I was sure."
But with the Olympics so close, how could he come to this decision? "That was definitely the battle that was going on in my mind. I had to figure out if that was something that I really wanted. After the world championship, I was so happy with winning that I had to reflect on how important that was to me and having the Olympics here in Vancouver is important to me but winning them wasn't. It just wasn't in my heart."
Buttle has accomplished a bit...He's won three Canadian National Titles, an Olympic Bronze, and in Sweden took the World Title. He has a smattering of other titles and medals from various competitions.
My head is still spinning here but that is a major blow to the Canadian Men's Team that will now look to Patrick Chan to make their case in Vancouver in 2010. What seemed like a shoe-in for three spots at the Olympics is now in jeopardy. Canada will need to muster some more consistency between now and the World Championships in LA if they wish to have max representation at the Olympics.
Buttle's retirement may give Emanuel Sandhu a reason to attempt a comeback but that seems less likely daily.
Wow, I'm still in shock! But at least Buttle went out with a bang! "Representing Canada around the world has been an honour and I'm very proud of my achievements as a competitive figure skater," Buttle said. "I've had so much support throughout my career and I'll be forever grateful to my fans, coaches and of course, my family."