Missy Franklin

Missy Franklin (back) in doubt for Pan Pacific Championships

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Missy Franklin could miss the biggest swim meet of the year with a back injury.

The four-time Olympic champion suffered back spasms at practice Tuesday, two days before the Pan Pacific Championships open in Gold Coast, Australia. Her status for her first events Thursday will be determined before preliminary heats that morning (Gold Coast is 14 hours ahead of Eastern time).

Franklin at first allayed fears Tuesday on Twitter.

But video from Sportsnet in Canada showed Franklin being gingerly helped away from the pool.

Pan Pacs men’s preview | women’s preview

Franklin, who became the first woman to win six gold medals at a single World Championships last year, was not present for practice or a press conference Wednesday. She was to be re-evaluated throughout Wednesday, USA Swimming said.

Later Wednesday, USA Swimming said Franklin tested her back swimming in a local pool with “minimal discomfort” and said back spasms were not previously a factor for her.

“It was very therapeutic and felt great being back in the water,” Franklin said in a press release. “I am feeling drastically better every hour that goes by and hoping and praying that I will be ready to race [Thursday]. We will consistently coordinate with team doctors and staff to make the best decisions for myself and my team.”

Franklin, a 19-year-old rising sophomore at California, was entered in the 200m freestyle and the 100m backstroke on the opening day of competition Thursday.

Michael Phelps takes on vocal leader role in Australia

Watch Real Sports trailer on Peter Norman of 1968 Olympic podium protest

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HBO’s “Real Sports” will profile Australian 1968 Olympic 200m silver medalist Peter Norman in an episode premiering Tuesday at 10 p.m. ET.

Norman finished between Tommie Smith and John Carlos in the 200m final at the Mexico City Games.

Largely forgotten, Norman’s story is chronicled by “Real Sports,” with the help of Smith and Carlos.

Norman died of a heart attack in 2006, and Smith and Carlos flew to Australia to serve as pallbearers and deliver eulogies at his funeral.

Smith and Carlos reflected on the role Norman played in their famous raised-fists podium gesture in this transcript from “Real Sports:”

Tommie Smith: “I had my gloves. And there was some discussion in the tunnel between John and myself.”

John Carlos: “Peter was there and he was kinda curious as to what we were doing, what we were talking about. And I turned to Peter and I asked him. I said, ‘Peter,’ I said, ‘Do you believe in human rights?’”

Real Sports: “You said– you expected to see fear in his eyes. Instead–”

John Carlos: “I didn’t see nothing but love, man. He looked at me and he smiled. He said, ‘Of course.’ And I said to him, I said, ‘Would you like to wear Olympic Project for Human Rights button?’ And he said, ‘Yeah.’ And he started reaching for mine. And I pat him on his hand. I said, ‘Whoa, you can’t have this. But I’ll get you one.’”

Real Sports: “He didn’t hesitate?”

John Carlos: “Mr. Norman never flinched.”

MORE: Smith, Carlos honored at White House

Russian wrestler who died in 2013 not stripped of 2012 Olympic medal in doping probe

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 11:  Silver medalist Besik Kudukhov of Russia, Gold medalist Toghrul Asgarov of Azerbaijan, Bronze medalist Coleman Scott of the United States, and Bronze medalist Yogeshwar Dutt of India in the Men's Freestyle 60 kg Wrestling on Day 15 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at ExCeL on August 11, 2012 in London, England.  (Photo by Paul Gilham/Getty Images)
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MOSCOW (AP) — Russia says the International Olympic Committee has dropped an investigation into a deceased wrestler who allegedly tested positive for a banned steroid when an old sample was retested.

Besik Kudukhov won the silver medal in the men’s freestyle 60-kilogram class at the 2012 Olympics and died the following year in a car crash.

The Russian Wrestling Federation says in a statement his sample from the 2012 Games was retested this year and found to be positive for the steroid turinabol. The case was passed to an IOC disciplinary commission, which ended its investigation last week with no action taken, the federation says.

The IOC, which has not acknowledged any positive test by Kudukhov, did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Kudukhov also won bronze at the 2008 Olympics.

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