Winter Sports The Greatest Male Figure Skaters of All Time  

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List Rules The best male figure skaters ever, living or dead

List of the greatest male figure skaters of all time. This list includes history’s most amazing male figure skaters, those whom audiences tuned in to see in all of the largest figure skating competitions, from the World Figure Skating Championships to the Olympics. Although they’re all retired now, they’ve contributed to figure skating’s heritage immeasurably.

Can any true skating fan forget the early greats in mens’ figure skating, including Ulrich Salchow and Gillis Grafström? Salchow, especially, not only entertained audiences but also left a legacy for all following generations of figure skaters — he’s the inventor of the famous salchow jump. The greats in mens’ figure skating have definitely embraced and perfected this jump — Timothy Goebel, for instance, was the first figure skater to land a quadruple salchow in a competition successfully.

Of course, all of mens’ single figure skating isn’t about powerful jumps. The greatest men in figure skating have been just as graceful and artistic as the greatest women, combining music and choreography in a way that moves audiences. Many of the greatest male figure skaters also turned to choreography and coaching careers as their competitive careers drew to a close.

On this list can be found the most significant men in figure skating history. These are the mavericks who’ve lead the way, the powerhouses who’ve won championship after championship, and the men who continue to influence the sport today. No matter your favorite male skater, from Dick Button to Kurt Browning, they’re all here on this list of the greatest male figure skaters ever.

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Yuzuru Hanyu is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Male Figure Skaters of All Time
1517862368706 added Yuzuru Hanyu Japan

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Ari Aries added Evgeni Plushenko Russia

Olympics: Gold 2006; Silver 2002, 2010
Worlds: Gold 2001, 2003, 2004; Silver 1999
Europeans: Gold 2000, 2001, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2010, 2012; Silver 1998, 1999, 2004
GP Final: Gold 2000, 2001, 2003, 2005; Silver 2002, 2004
Cup of Russia: Gold 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2010
Lalique: Gold 2004
NHK Trophy: Gold 1999, 2000, 2001
Skate America: Silver 1998
Skate Canada: Gold 1999, 2004
Nations Cup: Gold 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003
Goodwill Games: Gold 2002

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Brian Orser Canada

Olympics: Silver 1984, 1988
Worlds: Gold 1987; Silver 1984, 1985, 1986, 1988
Skate Canada: Gold 1984, 1985, 1988; Silver 1982, 1983
NHK Trophy Silver 1985, 1986
St. Ivel: Gold 1982, 1983, 1986
Nebelhorn: Silver 1981
St. Gervais: Gold 1981
Novarat: Gold 1987

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Dobák Diána added Javier Fernández Spain

As of 2017, two time world champion (2015-16) and 5 time European champion (2013-17), known for often portraying characters (Chaplin, Jack Sparrow, Don Quijote) in his competitive programs.

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Alexei Yagudin Russia

Olympics: Gold 2002
Worlds: Gold 1998, 1999, 2000, 2002; Silver 2001
Europeans: Gold 1998, 1999, 2002; Silver 2000, 2001
GP Final: Gold 1999, 2002; Silver 2001
Cup of Russia: Gold 1998; Silver 1997
Lalique: Gold 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002
Nations Cup: Gold 1999
Skate America: Gold 1999, 2000; Silver 2001
Skate Canada: Gold 2000, 2001, 2002

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Kurt Browning Canada

Worlds: Gold 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993; Silver 1992
Goodwill Games: Gold 1991

Int. de Paris: Gold 1992
Nations Cup: Gold 1991
Skate Canada: Gold 1989, 1991, 1994
St. Gervais: Silver 1986, 1987
St. Ivel: Gold 1989; Silver 1988

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Scott Hamilton United States of America

Olympics: Gold 1984
Worlds: Gold 1981, 1982, 1983, 1984
Skate America: Gold 1980, 1982, 1983
Skate Canada: Gold 1981
NHK Trophy: Gold 1983
Nebelhorn: Silver 1977

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Brian Boitano United States of America

Olympics: Gold 1988
Worlds: Gold 1986, 1988; Silver 1987
Skate America: Gold 1984, 1987; Silver 1986, 1994
NHK Trophy: Gold 1986
St. Ivel: Gold 1985

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Elvis Stojko Canada Elvis Stojko not only took the gold at the Canadian Figure Skating Championships seven times but also won the silver at the Winter Olympic games twice (1994 and 1998).

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Dick Button United States of America Dick Button, who created the flying camel spin, won multiple gold medals, including five at the World Figure Skating Championships (1948 to 1952).

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Stéphane Lambiel Switzerland

Olympics: Silver 2006
Worlds: Gold 2005, 2006
Europeans: Silver 2006, 2008, 2010
GP Final: Gold 2006, 2008
Cup of China: Silver 2006
Cup of Russia: Silver 2006, 2008
Skate Canada: Gold 2007
Nebelhorn: Gold 2010

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Viktor Petrenko Viktor Petrenko represented the Unified Team at the 1992 Winter Olympic Games, where he won the gold medal in mens’ single figure skating.

The Greatest American Figure Skaters of All Time

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Johnny Weir United States of America Johnny Weir was on top in U.S. skating from 2004 to 2006; he won the gold medal at the U. S. Figure Skating Championships each of those years.

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Robin Cousins United Kingdom Robin Cousins is a champion many times over; his accomplishments include taking the gold at the British Figure Skating Championships for four consecutive years (1977 to 1980).

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Ilia Kulik Russia In 1995 Ilia Kulik earned the gold medal at both the World Junior Figure Skating Championships and the European Figure Skating Championships; he went on to earn Olympic gold (1998).

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Ulrich Salchow Sweden Ulrich Salchow is a legendary figure skater who won not only the World Figure Skating Championships 10 times but also the European Figure Skating Championships nine times.

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John Curry United Kingdom John Curry, skating for Great Britain, won the gold at both the World Figure Skating Championships and Winter Olympic Games in 1976.

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Toller Cranston Canada The Canadian Figure Skating Championships belonged to Toller Cranston from 1971 to 1976 — he won the gold each year for a total of six champion titles.

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Philippe Candeloro France Philippe Candeloro, at the 1994 and 1998 Winter Olympics, won the gold medal; he represented France.

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Todd Eldredge United States of America Todd Eldredge captured the title at the U. S. Figure Skating Championships six times (1990, 1991, 1995, 1997, 1998, and 2002).

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Jeffrey Buttle Canada Events Jeffrey Buttle gold medaled at during his career include the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships, the Canadian Figure Skating Championships, and the World Figure Skating Championships.

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Paul Wylie is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Male Figure Skaters of All Time
PamelaCerutti added Paul Wylie United States of America

Paul Wylie won the silver medal at the 1992 Olympics. He won the 1992 U.S. Open Professional Championship and the 1993 World Professional Figure Skating Championships. Wylie toured with Stars on Ice from 1992 to 1998 and was inducted into the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame on January 25, 2008.

The Greatest Russian Figure Skaters of All Time

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Nobunari Oda Japan Nobunari Oda claimed the top spot at both the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships (2006) and the Japan Figure Skating Championships (2008).

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Alexei Urmanov Russia Before turning to coaching, Alexei Urmanov won the gold at the 1994 Winter Olympic Games.

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Nathan Chen is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Male Figure Skaters of All Time
whomstdv added Nathan Chen

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Brian Joubert is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Male Figure Skaters of All Time
JenniferShelley added Brian Joubert France

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Takeshi Honda Japan Takeshi Honda earned six gold medals (nonconsecutive) at the Japan Figure Skating Championships as well as two gold medals at the Four Continents Figure Skating Championships.

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Rudy Galindo United States of America Rudy Galindo skated in both pairs and mens’ singles; while skating as a single figure skater, he won the gold at the U. S. Figure Skating Championships in 1996.

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David Jenkins United States of America David Jenkins took the gold at the Winter Olympic Games in 1960.

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Timothy Goebel United States of America Although Timothy Goebel only achieved Olympic bronze (2002), he is remembered as the first skater to successfully (in competition) complete a quadruple salchow.

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Ari Aries added Jozef Sabovčík Slovakia

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Hayes Alan Jenkins United States of America Hayes Alan Jenkins, in 1956, won the gold at both the World Figure Skating Championships and the Winter Olympic Games; he also won the gold at the World Figure Skating Championships the three previous years (1953 to 1955).

The Greatest American Male Figure Skaters of All Time

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Gillis Grafström Sweden Gillis Grafström took three gold medals at the Olympics, one each in 1920, 1924, and 1928; he has the distinction of being one of only two athletes to have won gold at both the Winter and Summer Olympic Games.

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Ondrej Nepela Ondrej Nepela, who turned to coaching later in his career, took the top spot at the 1972 Winter Olympic Games.

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Christopher Bowman United States of America Christopher Bowman competed in the Winter Olympics but never medaled; he did, however, take first place at the U. S. Figure Skating Championships twice (1989, 1992).

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Alexander Vladimirovich Fadeyev Russia Alexander Fadeev took the title of world champion once (World Figure Skating Championships, 1985) and the title of European champion four times (European Figure Skating Championships, 1984 and 1987 to 1989).

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Karl Schäfer Austria Karl Schäfer, who was also an Olympic competitor in swimming, won the gold medal in mens’ single skating at both the 1932 and 1936 Olympic Games.

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Jan Hoffmann Germany Jan Hoffmann can count among his achievements becoming the champion at the World Figure Skating Championships (twice) and at the European Figure Skating Championships (four times).

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Terry Kubicka United States of America Terry Kubicka, in 1976, competed in the Winter Olympic Games and won the gold medal at the U. S. Figure Skating Championships.

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Daniel Hollander Daniel Hollander managed to win two bronze medals at the U. S. Figure Skating Championships before becoming injured and being forced to leave competitive figure skating.

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Wolfgang Schwarz Austria Wolfgang Schwarz won the gold medal at the 1968 Winter Olympic Games; his reputation was later tarnished, however, when he was convicted of human trafficking (2002).

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Gilbert Fuchs Germany Gilbert Fuchs is the first-ever world figure skating champion; he participated (and won the gold) in the premier of the World Figure Skating Championships in St. Petersburg in 1896.

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Emmerich Danzer Austria Emmerich Danzer just missed medaling in the 1969 Olympic Games (he placed fourth), but he did capture the top spot at the European Figure Skating Championships four consecutive years (1965 to 1968).

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Li Chengjiang Li Chengjiang competed but didn’t medal in the Olympics twice; he did take top spot at the Chinese Figure Skating Championships six times, however.

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Manfred Schnelldorfer Germany At the Winter Olympic Games in 1964 (Innsbruck), Manfred Schnelldorfer, who skated for Germany, won the gold medal in mens’ single figure skating.

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Willy Böckl Austria Willy Böckl won multiple gold medals at the World Figure Skating Championships, the European Figure Skating Championships, and the Austrian Figure Skating Championships as well as two Olympic silver medals.

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Alain Giletti is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Male Figure Skaters of All Time
Alain Giletti France Alain Giletti won the gold medal at the French Figure Skating Championships 10 times; he also competed in the Olympics.