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Brody Malone wins U.S. all-around gymnastics title in return from injury

Brody Malone will again go into the Olympic Trials as the reigning U.S. all-around champion, but much changed in the three years since the Tokyo Games.

Malone, 24, built on his 1.6-point lead from Thursday's first day of competition to win by 2.05 points over world bronze medalist Frederick Richard on Saturday.

Malone and Richard are in strong position to make the five-man team for the Paris Olympics.

At Olympic Trials from June 27-30 in Minneapolis, the all-around winner makes the team if he is also among the top three on three of the six apparatus.

XFINITY U.S. CHAMPIONSHIPS: Results | Broadcast Schedule

A committee picks the rest of the roster, leaning heavily on scores from this week's meet and trials.

In 2021, Malone won the all-around in his senior national championships debut and was part of the U.S. men's team that placed fifth in Tokyo.

In 2022, Malone repeated as U.S. champion, then took fourth in the all-around at the world championships and won the world title on high bar.

That momentum came to a halt on March 18, 2023. Malone blew out his right knee on a high bar dismount fall, had three surgeries and returned to competition 10 months later.

This week, he performed in the all-around (all six apparatus) for the first time since sustaining the injuries.

He scored 85.95 points on Thursday, then upped it to 86.35 on Saturday. His top score at nationals in 2022 was 86.75 (excluding bonus points).

Without Malone, the U.S. men won team bronze at last October's world championships, their first medal since 2014.

On July 29, they will bid for an Olympic team medal for the first time since 2008, and it looks like they'll have Malone back on the squad.

Richard, too. Last year, the University of Michigan standout went from third in the all-around in the country in August to third in the all-around in the world in October.

At age 19, he became the youngest U.S. man to win an individual medal in world championships history.

This week, Richard was second to Malone in the all-around and on high bar, plus won floor exercise.

Khoi Young, who won three medals at worlds, impressed at nationals by posting the highest single vault score each night and placing second on parallel bars.

Others in contention going into Olympic Trials include 2023 U.S. all-around champ Asher Hong, 2017 U.S. all-around champ Yul Moldauer and 2016 Olympic alternate Donnell Whittenburg.

The Xfinity U.S. Championships finish with the second day of women's competition on Sunday, live at 7 p.m. ET on NBC, NBCSports.com, the NBC Sports app and Peacock.

Brody Malone
Brody Malone

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