Fourteen years ago, when the Olympics were previously held in Beijing, two of the Games' biggest names — Usain Bolt and Michael Phelps — etched their names into history. Bolt burst on the scene at the National Stadium, where the 2022 Opening and Closing Ceremonies will be held, with a world record in the 100 meters and his first gold medal. Phelps won eight golds — the most of any Olympian at a single Games — at the Water Cube, which will host curling this month. Who will step into the Olympic spotlight this time around in China?

Nathan Chen, U.S.

Few athletes have been looking forward to the Games as much as Chen. After a disappointing individual finish off the podium in Pyeongchang four years ago, the 22-year-old quad king won 14 consecutive competitions and three straight world titles over the next three years. He is coming off his sixth consecutive U.S. title.

Natalie Geisenberger, Germany

Considered one of luge's all-time best, she nearly skipped the Olympics, criticizing conditions in China, but decided late to attempt to win a third consecutive gold in singles. She took the 2019-20 season off to have her first child and returned to competition by winning her eighth World Cup title. This is expected to be the final Olympics for the 33-year-old.

Chloe Kim, U.S.

One of the breakout performances at the last Winter Games came from Kim, flying high in the snowboarding halfpipe and winning gold at 17. Since then, she became the first woman to land what is called a front-side double cork 1080 (flipping upside down twice during an aerial rotation), took a year off from the sport, returned to win two world titles and enrolled at Princeton.

Marie-Philip Poulin, Canada

Any discussion of the Canadian national women's hockey team starts with Poulin. The forward has served as captain since 2015, has two game-winning goals in gold-medal games (2010, 2014) and has 11 goals and seven assists in 15 games at the Olympics. She also has three medals (two gold, one silver) in her ledger.

Mikaela Shiffrin, U.S.

It's been an unusual leadup to the Games for Shiffrin, 26, the most decorated member of the U.S. ski team. She entered the 2021-22 season still mourning the 2020 death of her father and recovering from nagging back injuries. After four early podium finishes, she missed training in October and November because of soreness, then more in late December during a COVID-19 quarantine. But in January she won her final slalom tune-up for her 73rd World Cup victory. She is trying to compete in all five Alpine events for the first time and is a medal challenger in at least three of them.

Shaun White, U.S.

The teen once known as The Flying Tomato is back for his fifth Olympics to add another chapter to his legacy. A three-time gold medalist in snowboarding halfpipe is the only Olympian to receive two perfect 100 scores in competition, but has only one podium finish in five competitions since returning from a three-year break in 2021.

Erin Jackson, U.S.

Four years ago, Jackson was still new to speed skating after a career as an inline skater, and still made the team in the 500 meters. Now she is the world's No. 1 skater in the event, and expected to medal. An American woman hasn't earned a speedskating gold medal since 2002.

Kamila Valieva, ROC

At 15, she is a heavy favorite to win gold in Beijing, headlining a Russian group strong enough to sweep the medal podium. She holds the world record for points scored in a short program and free skate. In her international senior debut in 2021, she landed three quad jumps in her free skate, did it again in January to win the 2022 European Championships, and has cleanly landed all 12 she's attempted in free skates.

Ireen Wust, Netherlands

With 11 career medals, including five golds and one at each Games since 2006, the 35-year-old Wust is the most decorated speedskater in Olympic history. A four-time winner at 1,500 meters, she is participating in her fifth Games for the powerhouse Dutch team.