One of the more unorthodox stories of the past season was the suspension of 2014 Olympic bronze medalist Carolina Kostner. It wasn't for doping, which is a complete blue moon in the world of figure skating (I can only remember two times when it happened - once was Elena Berezhnaya's unapproved cold medicine and the other was Yuri Larionov taking a banned substance). Rather, Kostner's suspension was for being complicit in her ex-boyfriend's doping.
But Kostner fans have a reason to rejoice, because Italian media is reporting that her suspension will be back-dated about 6 1/2 months, which would mean that her 2015-16 season could very well be salvaged. Under the new agreement, which is expected to be announced tomorrow, she can resume training in November and compete again in January. This timeline would allow her to compete at the World Championships in March 2016.
But what about Europeans, you ask? Even though Europeans are in late January, ISU rules are that skaters have to achieve a minimum technical score at least 21 days before the start of practice for a competition, and the first competition she's eligible for (Nestle Torun Cup) is not early enough for that.
But (and there's a third "but") a real question is also whether or not at age 28, with an Olympic bronze medal, a World title, five other World medals, and five European titles to her name, Kostner would make the comeback to an increasingly more technically-packed field. She made huge strides during the Olympic season, bringing back her triple flip-triple toe and her triple lutz after a couple of seasons of watered-down programs, but you wonder whether she's got another push in her to get those jumps back.
Whether or not she will return to competition, at least her comeback wouldn't have to wait until next season. And the skating world is definitely happier because of that.
Update (10/7/15): After the decision was announced, Kostner said, "The desire is there [to return to competition], and it includes also obviously a possible Olympics." According to CBC, she and her team have not laid out a timeline for a return yet.