As well as claiming only the third ever skating title for Japan, his gold medal was also the 1,000th awarded in Winter Games history.
"I'm not fully healed, I really pushed it hard and there were some jumps and elements that I could not perform, but I forced myself to do so", revealed Hanyu, who damaged ankle ligaments in a training accident in November.
Chen immediately recognized the magnitude of what he accomplished, as did the crowd at the Gangneung Ice Arena. Hanyu considers Pooh a lucky charm, and regularly carries the bear with him as a mascot.
His routine set to Chopin's Ballade No.1 earned him 10 points more than the one he led the short programme with in Russian Federation four years ago.
He is the first male skater to win consecutive Olympic gold medals in 66 years.
Double Olympic figure-skating champion Yuzuru Hanyu battled his emotions on Saturday to open up on the trauma he suffered in surviving the deadly 2011 Japan quake. "My tears were from my heart. I wanted to go out there and show that I am a serious athlete", he said.
Hanyu may have doubted, but his fellow skaters - none of whom had seen him on ice since October - didn't, with America's Adam Rippon saying last week "You can never count Yuzuru out".
"I just thought, "skate".
"This is the best day of my skating life".
"More than worries about my strength, I was actually concerned about whether I'd be able to stand on skates again", Hanyu told reporters after overcoming a stumble in his mesmerising free performance to win his second gold at the age of 23.
Hanyu and Fernandez hug each other as their coach Brian Orser proudly takes a picture.
He was nearly overshadowed, however, by American Nathan Chen his record-breaking routine featuring six quad jumps. It left the Grand Prix Finals champion in 17th place, and so far adrift of Yuzuru Hanyu's stellar 111.68 score that Chen will skate hours before the Japanese leader for his free skate on Saturday.
American Vincent Zhou, just 17, finished sixth.
The silver medalist, Shoma Uno, had two mistakes on his jumps, but also benefited from a short program performance that propelled him into second place with an otherwise well-executed program set to "Turandot".
To be able to come back from the kind of disappointment he faced after his short program and deliver that free program he did is under the glare of the Olympic rings is, as I said: phenomenal. Chen's attempt at six would have succeeded if he hadn't put his hand on the ice during a quad flip.
"Sort a mix of emotions", Chen said.
The 18-year-old was blunt when asked to assess his overall performance at the games. I continued to make efforts for the two months during which I couldn't skate. "I was thinking that after the first run, but I think it was me making an excuse", said Shiffrin, one of the biggest names at the Games.
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