- Adam Stites at Fourth-Place Medal1 hr ago
Tony Azevedo is a week away from his competing in his fifth Olympics, the most ever for an American water polo player, and he’s using his global platform to fight against SeaWorld.
In an ad campaign with PETA, Azevedo is asking SeaWorld to free its orcas and retire the whales to sanctuaries.
— PETA (@peta) July 28, 2016
SeaWorld has been in PETA’s crosshairs for a long time, with the 2013 documentary “Blackfish” stirring plenty of outrage about the theme park’s treatment of orcas.
- Emily McLanahan at Fourth-Place Medal2 hrs ago
Recognize this face?
Apparently two people in Atlanta did not. That’s only swimmer Katie Ledecky, two-time Olympian who holds the world record in the 400-meter, 800-meter and 1500-meter freestyles, the first woman to simultaneously hold these records since Janet Evans in 1988.
Cue the oblivious girls who asked Ledecky to take their photo.
According to fellow Stanford teammate Maya DiRado, two girls wanted to capture a moment together and asked Ledecky to assist them – obviously not recognizing who she was because she wasn’t asked to join in on the photo fun.
— Maya DiRado (@MayaDiRado) July 28, 2016
Way to go, girls.
- Alex Baker at Fourth-Place Medal4 hrs ago
The Rio Olympics are just over a week away and the protests we’ve seen on the ground in Brazil show no signs of abating any time soon, with angry protesters on Wednesday night having gone as far as to halt the Olympic torch procession, snatch the torch away and extinguish it.
A video posted online from the confrontation, which took place in Angra dos Reis near Rio de Janeiro, shows a crowd of protesters grabbing the torch away from the Olympic procession before snuffing it out. The scene then rapidly descends into chaos with Brazilian military police moving in to disperse the crowd with tear gas and rubber bullets. The crowd quickly joined in on the melee, pelting the police with rocks, bricks and other projectiles.
Loud bangs and explosions can also be witnessed on the video as the crowd scatters and the processional retreats to the relative safety of a support vehicle.
- Eric Freeman at Fourth-Place Medal23 hrs ago
The Brazilian men’s basketball team will be without one of its most recognizable and popular players when it hosts the Olympic tournament in Rio de Janeiro. As announced by the Golden State Warriors on Wednesday, veteran big man Anderson Varejao will miss the Olympics due to a back injury:
Warriors center Anderson Varejao was examined earlier this week by Dr. Robert Watkins at the Marina Spine Center in Marina Del Rey, CA, and was diagnosed with a small lower back disc herniation. He is expected to be ready for the start of training camp, but will be forced to miss the 2016 Summer Olympics due to the injury.
Varejao recently experienced back pain while participating with the Brazilian National Team and returned to California to be examined by Dr. Watkins, a renowned spine specialist.
- Adam Stites at Fourth-Place Medal1 day ago
Muhammad Ali is a promising, young boxer hoping to make a name for himself on the grand stage of the Olympics. No, the year isn’t 1960. Great Britain has an Ali of its own prepping to compete in the flyweight division in Rio de Janeiro.
“I get asked about it all the time,” Ali told the Irish Mirror of his famous name. “I won’t say it’s been an advantage, but people do say, ‘Who is this?’”
But unlike “The Greatest,” who won the gold medal in the light heavyweight division in the 1960 Olympics and reigned over the heavyweight division for much of his professional career, the 20-year-old British amateur is just 5 feet, 6 inches tall and 115 pounds.
Here are five things to know about the man with the name of one of the United States’ most iconic athletes:
1. Yes, Ali was named after the legendary American boxer – his father is an avid boxing fan and taxi driver – but that wasn’t the athlete he looked up to and emulated.
- Vincent Peña at Fourth-Place Medal1 day ago
What’s the point of heading all the way down to Rio de Janeiro to compete in the Olympics when you can host your own right at home?
That’s apparently the question Russia has been trying to answer since nearly a third of its athletes that qualified for the Olympics were banned in June because of doping – and it has responded in the only way it knows how.
By holding its own Olympics.
The head coach of Russia’s national team, Yuri Borzakovsky, announced Wednesday that Russia will host its own tournament for all the athletes who were banned from competing at the Rio Olympics next month because of doping violations that resulted from a lengthy investigation conducted by the World Anti-Doping Agency.
According to The Atlantic, Borzakovsky told state-run news outlet TASS that the tournament will feature 135 track and field athletes, including past Olympic and world champions.
From TASS, via The Atlantic:
- Ben Rohrbach at Fourth-Place Medal1 day ago
The list of Russian athletes banned from the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics grew to 105 on Tuesday, and as you might imagine, Vladimir Putin is brimming with indignation and conspiracy theories.
Stopping short of ruling Russia out of the 2016 Summer Olympics entirely after the country orchestrated a comprehensive doping scandal that drove the host country’s winning medal count at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, the International Olympic Committee ruled out another 27 would-be Russian Olympians on Tuesday in track, rowing, canoeing and sailing, according to the Associated Press.
All in all, nearly a third of Russia’s 387-person Olympic roster has been banned from Brazil.
And while many believe the IOC’s decision to spare his country from complete banishment was due in part to Putin’s influence over the global sports federation, that isn’t stopping the Russian president from calling the IOC’s limited bans a “deliberate campaign” against a global athletic superpower.
- Dan Devine at Fourth-Place Medal1 day ago
If you’re a video-game enthusiast who also loves the U.S. men’s national basketball team’s unique brand of competition-stomping brilliance, I’ve got some good news for you. The folks at 2K Sports announced Wednesday morning that this year’s edition of their wildly successful basketball video game, “NBA 2K17” — which will feature Indiana Pacers star and Team USA forward Paul George on its cover — will give you the opportunity to play as the 2016 version of Team USA as led by coach Mike Krzyzewski (who, lest we forget, is no stranger to the video-gaming world).
[Follow Dunks Don’t Lie on Tumblr: The best slams from all of basketball]
- Eric Freeman at Fourth-Place Medal1 day ago
Tuesday night’s pre-Olympics basketball exhibition between the United States and China is unlikely to be remembered for its result, a 107-55 thumping that confirmed everything we already know about Team USA’s dominance. They led 52-24 at the half and never looked in serious danger of winning in anything less than a blowout. It wasn’t always a thrilling display, but they dominated every facet of the contest.
[Follow Dunks Don’t Lie on Tumblr: The best slams from all of basketball]
- Michael Grandinetti at Fourth-Place Medal2 days ago
For many Olympians, winning a medal is the ultimate goal.
But for the athletes from one country, winning a medal means much, much more.
For South Korean Olympians, claiming a medal goes far beyond standing on the podium, as the Games provide an opportunity to be exempt from the country’s mandatory military service rule, according to John Duerden of The New York Times. Athletes who win a medal are freed from their military obligations.
At the 2012 Olympics in London, the South Korean men’s soccer team’s bronze medal meant much more than a third place finish. With such high stakes, it’s safe to say the nation will be highly motivated to repeat its success in Rio.
But with so much at stake, how do the players handle the pressure?
From The New York Times: