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Evan Lysacek set for first competition since 2010 Olympics

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2010 Olympic figure skating champion Evan Lysacek‘s long-awaited return is less than two months away.

U.S. Figure Skating announced Lysacek as one of the entries for the U.S. International Figure Skating Classic in Salt Lake City from Sept. 11-15.

Other U.S. skaters in the event include 2010 Olympic silver medalists and world champions in ice dancing Meryl Davis and Charlie White, reigning U.S. men’s champion Max Aaron and nationals runner-up Gracie Gold.

Lysacek, 28, appeared close to returning each of the last three seasons. He did not skate in 2011-12 due to disagreements with U.S. Figure Skating.

He was set to compete at Skate America in 2012, only to withdraw with a groin injury. He had sports hernia surgery in November, which caused him to miss the U.S. Championships in January.

In June, it was announced Lysacek would compete at Skate America in Detroit in October, which, up until Tuesday, appeared that it would be his first competition since Vancouver.

In 2010, Lysacek became the first U.S. man to win Olympic figure skating gold since Brian Boitano in 1988.

He’s aiming to become the first U.S. figure skater since Todd Eldredge (1992, 1998, 2002) to compete in three Olympics. The two-man U.S. team will be chosen after the national championships in Boston in January.

Should Lysacek make it to Sochi, his primary competition will be Canadian three-time reigning world champion Patrick Chan, who took silver to Lysacek’s gold at the 2009 worlds.

There’s also Russian Evgeni Plushenko, 30, trying to make his fourth Olympic team. Plushenko took silver to Lysacek at the 2010 Olympics.

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Tommie Smith, John Carlos set to join Team USA at White House

FILe - In this Oct. 16, 1968, file photo, U.S. athletes Tommie Smith, center, and John Carlos stare downward while extending gloved hands skyward during the playing of the Star Spangled Banner after Smith received the gold and Carlos the bronze for the 200 meter run at the Summer Olympic Games in Mexico City. Australian silver medalist Peter Norman is at left. Smith and Carlos, the American sprinters whose raised-fist salutes at the 1968 Olympics are an ageless sign of race-inspired protest, will join the U.S. Olympic team at the White House next week for its meeting with President Barack Obama. Smith and Carlos were sent home from the Olympics after raising their black-gloved fists in a symbolic protest during the U.S. national anthem. They called it a ``human rights salute.''
The USOC asked them to serve as ambassadors as it tries to make its own leadership more diverse. (AP Photo/File)
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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (AP) — Tommie Smith and John Carlos, the American sprinters whose raised-fist salutes at the 1968 Olympics are an ageless sign of race-inspired protest, will join the U.S. Olympic team at the White House next week for its meeting with President Barack Obama.

Smith and Carlos were sent home from the Olympics after raising their black-gloved fists in a symbolic protest during the U.S. national anthem. They called it a “human rights salute.”

USOC CEO Scott Blackmun asked them to serve as ambassadors as the federation tries to bring more diversity to its own ranks. They will join the team at the White House next Wednesday, then later that evening at an awards celebration in Washington.

The sprinters have been referenced frequently in the recent protests, spurred by Colin Kaepernick, during national anthems at NFL games. One player, Marcus Peters of the Chiefs, raised his own black-gloved fist before Kansas City’s season opener.

“I think Tommie and John have played an important and positive role in the evolution of our attitudes about diversity and inclusion, not only in the United States but around the world,” Blackmun said Friday night at a dinner to celebrate the U.S. performance in Brazil this summer.

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Wilson Kipsang: I am very focused on the marathon world record

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The men’s marathon world record has been broken five of the last nine years at the Berlin Marathon.

Kenya’s Wilson Kipsang, who broke the world record at the 2013 Berlin Marathon, believes that he can do it again on Sunday, when the race will stream live on the NBC Sports app beginning at 2:30 a.m. ET.

“I’ve trained well and, three years down the line from my world record here, I feel good and believe I have the potential to attempt the world record once more,” he said at today’s press conference, according to the IAAF. “Running at the top level, there is a lot of wear and tear on the body, especially when you are running for a time, but I am very focused on the world record.”

Kipsang clocked 2 hours, 3 minutes, 23 seconds when he broke the world record in 2013. A year later, fellow Kenyan Dennis Kimetto lowered it to 2:02:57 on the same course. Kimetto will not race in Berlin this year.

Kipsang will be challenged by Kenyan compatriot Emmanuel Mutai, who has the fastest time (2:03:13) in the field, and Ethiopia’s Kenenisa Bekele.

Bekele is a three-time Olympic track champion and the 5000m and 10,000m world-record holder, but acknowledged that his marathon personal best of 2:05:04 places him a distant fourth in the field.

“I consider my personal best of 2:05 to be slow compared to the best runners,” he said. “I want to run as fast as I can on Sunday and beat my best.”

MORE: Berlin Marathon to live stream on NBC Sports app