Kevin Pearce eager to watch snowboarding in Sochi

Published on NewsOK Modified: December 12, 2013 at 4:03 pm •  Published: December 12, 2013

After a bustling schedule to promote his movie, snowboarder Kevin Pearce decided to unwind with a little excursion into the Canadian backcountry.

No daring tricks, of course, just some peaceful passes through the deep powder. He leaves the more complicated stuff to the experts like Shaun White.

These days, Pearce can't help but marvel at the daring maneuvers he's seeing in the halfpipe.

That's good, he said, because he wouldn't want anyone to hold back because of what happened to him.

Nearly four years ago, Pearce miscalculated a difficult trick in Park City, Utah. He landed on his face and was left with a traumatic brain injury.

His road back from the life-altering accident was chronicled in the "The Crash Reel," a documentary that appears in theaters Friday.

Ever so gradually, he's making more and more progress. He relishes in the little things that return each day — maybe a memory, perhaps a feeling.

"I'm not done getting better," Pearce said in a recent phone interview. "My brain is continuing to heal, figuring new things out every day. That's so cool."

Still, he misses being around snowboarding.

More specifically, hanging out with his crew. That's why he's looking forward to heading to the Sochi Games in two months to hopefully cheer a group of buddies that includes Danny Davis and Scotty Lago, a bronze medalist in Vancouver four years ago. They call themselves "Frends," leaving out the "I'' because they believe snowboarding should be about group fun not individual accomplishments.

Pearce's role in Sochi won't just be as a spectator, though. The plan is for him to help carry the torch during the opening ceremony. He also was hoping to do commentary work for the halfpipe event, but that didn't quite pan out.

This much Pearce is sure of — it's going to be quite an entertaining halfpipe show in Sochi.

"In these Olympics, there are going to be tricks and dudes going big like we haven't seen," said Pearce, who lives in Carlsbad, Calif. "That's so awesome to be able to witness and see these guys push the limit and push the sport to a place it's never been before."

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