But in sport as in life, those exits don’t just happen, even to once-in-a-generation talents like theirs, especially in a discipline so vulnerable to the vagaries of judging allegiances.
When Canada’s favourite ice dancers won gold on Tuesday afternoon local time, it was an emotional affair.
This is likely their last Olympics.
Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir already had a gold from Vancouver and a silver from Sochi, but came out of retirement in late 2016 for one more shot at an Olympic victory.
On Tuesday, they beat the French team of Gabriella Papadakis and Guillaume Cizeron, who are also their training partners in Montreal. The French skated before the Canadians and scored a world record 123.35 points for a low-key, technically proficient free dance. It gave them a two-dance total of 205.28, another world record.
But the Canadians finished with an extra new world record of 206.07.
Predictably, the Internet was overjoyed
The Olympic gold medals they won are emphatic symbols of their dominance, but more significantly of their relentless pursuit of perfection. Congratulations LEGENDS!