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Tonya To Lace Up Hockey Skates

Tonya Harding
CBS/The Early Show
Disgraced former U.S. figure skating champion and aspiring boxer Tonya Harding is trying minor league ice hockey next.

The Indianapolis Ice of the Central Hockey League announced Monday that it has signed Harding, 33, to join the team for its game Friday against the Colorado Eagles.

It has been 10 years since Harding's ex-husband hired a hit man to attack rival Nancy Kerrigan at the 1994 national championships. Harding has always denied knowledge of the attack, but pleaded guilty to conspiracy to hinder prosecution, was stripped of her 1994 national title, and banned from amateur figure skating competition.

"You know, everybody's made mistakes," she said last month on CBS News' The Early Show. "Everybody's had tragic things happen in their lives. But what good is to just sit there and just let yourself die?"

Although she has been pursuing a career in boxing, Harding also is seeking reinstatement from the United States Figure Skating Commission.

"I'm one of the best skaters in the world and I'm not going to quit. I love boxing and I'm not going to quit boxing," she told CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

Harding is scheduled to fight in Oakland, Calif., at the Oakland Arena on March 20.

The Ice in 2002 signed 7-foot-7 former NBA player Manute Bol for a one-game stint with the team, but he never made it on the ice as his feet swelled inside his custom-made skates.

"We learned last season (with Manute Bol) that it's easier to teach someone to fight than it is to skate," said Ice General Manager Larry Linde. "As far as I'm concerned Tonya represents the best of both worlds, she's already a world class skater and a professional boxer to boot."

Linde has promised fans they will see a fight on the ice at Friday's game, or they will receive a free ticket to the team's season finale.

"Some people have questioned our toughness this season and I intend to put an end to that this Friday," Linde said in a team press release. "She certainly gives new meaning to the term "Are You Tough Enough?'" the team's slogan.