Shibutanis to skip 2018-19 figure skating season

Olympic bronze medalist ice dancers Maia and Alex Shibutani will skip the next figure skating season but aren't retiring.

The announcement Thursday by the "Shib Sibs" was not surprising. They said they have not ruled out future competition.

"Our experience at the Olympic Games was the result of four years of relentless training and dedication," said Maia Shibutani, who is 23; her brother turns 27 in two weeks. "While we are still young and love competing and performing, we have exciting projects that we have the opportunity to work on both together and individually."

That would include their current roles in the Stars on Ice tour.

The Shibutanis helped the United States win team bronze in South Korea in February, then took another bronze in ice dance. They are two-time U.S. champions.

American ice dance remains in good hands even without the Shibutanis. Madison Hubbell and Zach Donohue won a world silver medal last month and were fourth at the Pyeongchang Olympics after taking their first national championship.

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