Todd Lodwick

Todd Lodwick’s eyes remain on Olympics after dislocating shoulder

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Todd Lodwick still expects to be the first American to compete in six Winter Olympics, four days after dislocating his left shoulder in a ski jumping crash.

“Bruised and beat up a little bit, but my spirits are pretty high at the moment,” he said in a phone interview Tuesday. “I have all intention of recovering from this and being as strong as I can.”

Lodwick, who earned his spot on the Olympic Team by winning the Olympic Trials on Dec. 28, said he crashed for the first time in a competition setting in his 20-year career in France on Friday.

He’s training at the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association’s Center of Excellence in Park City, Utah, doing treadmill work. Lodwick, a noted strong ski jumper, is currently unable to use his left arm for cross-country skiing and is keeping it as immobile as possible.

He’s focused on coming back for the 4x5km relay in Sochi, which is the last event on the Nordic combined program on Feb. 20. Lodwick and the U.S. won silver in the event in 2010 and are among the medal contenders again this year.

Lodwick said further evaluations will be necessary to determine his availability for competing in individual events on Feb. 12 and Feb. 18.

He was fourth in the normal hill event in Vancouver, where teammate Johnny Spillane won the first U.S. Olympic medal in Nordic combined, a silver.

Lodwick called Friday’s crash a “freak accident.”

“Things go up, things come down,” he said. “When you travel at a high rate of speed and one minor thing goes wrong, it can be catastrophic.”

He felt relatively fine, though, until his shoulder was popped back into place.

“Then the pain set in,” Lodwick said.

Biathlete gives up Olympic spot to twin

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