Simon Cho

Simon Cho suspended 2 years for short track speedskating tampering

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U.S. Olympic short track speedskating bronze medalist Simon Cho has been suspended through Oct. 4, 2014 by the International Skating Union after admitting to tampering with a Canadian’s skate at the 2011 World Team Championships. Cho would miss the 2014 Olympics under that ban.

The two-year suspension was set retroactively to Oct. 5, 2012, the day Cho admitted to bending a skate blade belonging to Canadian Olympic champion Olivier Jean. Cho said he was directed to do so by U.S. coach Jae Su Chun.

Chun, who denied Cho’s claim, was also suspended, through Aug. 25, 2015. Chun resigned his US Speedskating post a week after Cho’s admission and has been coaching a club of skaters, including top Americans, in Salt Lake City.

Cho, 21, did not compete at last weekend’s World Cup trials at the Utah Olympic Oval. He could still be suspended further by US Speedskating and has not been training or competing on any level in the last year, according to the Deseret News.

The Seoul-born Cho was the top U.S. men’s short track speedskater in the year following the Vancouver Olympics, where he was the youngest member of the team that won 5,000-meter relay bronze. In 2010-11, he won the overall World Cup season title and the World Championship in the 500 meters, where Jean took silver.

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David Ortiz weighed down by Aly Raisman’s medals (video)

David Ortiz, Aly Raisman
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David Ortiz called his good friend Aly Raisman on Thursday night. Raisman had one request for their scheduled meeting for Friday.

“I told him that he had to hold my medals while I threw out the first pitch,” Raisman said on NESN. “I told him he better not forget, but he remembered.”

Ortiz made it a highlight, wearing Raisman’s three Rio medals and plodding as if they were weighing him down before the Royals-Red Sox game at Fenway Park on Friday night.

It was reminiscent of Bryce Harper serving as a medal rack for Katie Ledecky on Wednesday night.

Ortiz and Raisman have come to know each other in the last four years, after Raisman’s first Olympic appearance in London. Raisman, a native of Needham, Massachusetts, has attended a gala and golf tournament benefitting Ortiz’s children’s charity.

She previously threw a first pitch at Fenway following the 2012 London Games. It didn’t faze Raisman that her pitch Friday bounced before reaching home plate.

“My pitch was horrible, but that’s OK,” Raisman said on NESN. “I’m good at gymnastics, so it doesn’t matter.”

Raisman will rejoin her Final Five teammates for a USA Gymnastics tour of 36 cities that begins Sept. 15. Whether she returns to competitive gymnastics is unknown.

MORE: Gymnastics royalty reacts to Biles and Raisman’s Olympic heroics

 

Claressa Shields congratulated by famous boxing actor (video)

Claressa Shields
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Claressa Shields may just be the most dominant female athlete on the planet. The Flint, Mich., native is now a two-time Olympic boxing champion with a 77-1 record and a four-year unbeaten streak.

Actor Mark Wahlberg, who played boxer Micky Ward in the 2010 film “The Fighter,” took notice.

He taped a video that Shields watched before a celebration in her hometown Thursday, according to the Flint Journal.

“You are the true definition of a champion,” Wahlberg said. “You continue to inspire so many people, not only in Flint, but all over the world. I’m so proud of you. Your performance was amazing. God bless you. I look forward to seeing you, and I look forward to doing lots of things with you.”

Now Shields must decide whether to turn professional, which would end her Olympic career.

“Professional women’s boxing is not nowhere near on the same attention level as the Olympics are,” the 21-year-old Shields said, according to the Flint Journal. “I get way more attention than any female boxer who is professional right now with me being an amateur.

“So the goal is to go professional but still have that same attention and same mainstream. Hopefully, if they have the rule changed that the women professionals can come back and fight the Olympics, I would go professional to fight on TV and make a bunch of money but then come back and defend my two gold medals in 2020.”

MORE: Shields becomes first U.S. fighter to win back-to-back golds