Michael Phelps wears all 28 Olympic medals

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Michael Phelps chose to pose with all 28 of his Olympic medals for the first time for a Sports Illustrated cover shoot.

The weight: 18 pounds, four ounces.

It’s Phelps’ 12th SI cover and his third this year. A full history is here.

Phelps has said in recent interviews that he had taken them all out once and looked at them with his wife and friend and fellow Olympic champion Allison Schmitt.

“I basically was like, this is unbelievable, it doesn’t seem real,” Phelps said. “They were both kind of, ‘It is real.'”

Phelps said he has a story for every one of his Olympic finals, from walking up to teammate Tom Malchow on the pool deck seconds before the Sydney 2000 200m butterfly to sharing his first gold medal through a chain-link fence with mother Debbie after the Athens 2004 400m individual medley to knowing during the final lap of the Rio 2016 100m butterfly that it was the way it was supposed to end.

In all, the 28 medals include 23 gold, three silver and two bronze.

2004: Six gold, two bronze
2008: Eight gold
2012: Four gold, two silver
2016: Five gold, one silver

Phelps and those close to him spoke about retirement — and the possibility of unretiring again — in the SI cover story. If Phelps chooses to unretire, he will have to re-enter a drug-testing pool and wait nine months before being eligible to compete.

“I give it eight years [until 2024, when Phelps will be 39], and then Boomer is like, ‘Come on, Dad, let’s see it one more time,'” wife Nicole said, according to SI. “Anyway, I see that being the only thing that could bring him back—to swim for Boomer.”

MORE: Phelps on why his goal number in Rio was ’40’

Yuzuru Hanyu opens Olympic season with record score

Yuzuru Hanyu
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A sore knee didn’t hold Yuzuru Hanyu back. A record score to open his Olympic season.

The Olympic and world champion from Japan hit a pair of quadruple jumps in his short program at the Autumn Classic, a lower-level event in Montreal.

He was rewarded with 112.72 points, the highest short program score recorded under the 13-year-old judging system. Video is here.

It looked like a home competition for Hanyu.

Upon finishing, he bowed toward one set of bleachers (maybe a dozen rows) at the Sportsplexe Pierrefonds. More than two dozen Japanese flags made it hard to see most of the faces.

He bettered Javier Fernández, a two-time world champion and training partner, by 11.52 points. Fernández also landed two quadruple jumps to tally 101.2.

Full scores will be here upon the conclusion of the short program. The free skate is Saturday at 8 p.m. ET. A live stream is here.

Hanyu now owns the three highest short program scores under the 13-year-old system. The other two were set in the 2015-16 season.

Showdowns like Hanyu-Fernández are usually reserved for, at the earliest, the Grand Prix series in late October and November.

Hanyu and Fernández are very familiar with each other, having shared a coach in Canadian Brian Orser, the 1988 Olympic silver medalist, since 2012. They train in Toronto.

In that time, Hanyu became the first Japanese man to win an Olympic title (and the second teen from any nation to do it). He followed it up with world titles later in 2014 and this year.

Fernández achieved unfathomable success for a Spanish skater — world titles in 2015 and 2016, overtaking Hanyu in the free skate both times.

In PyeongChang, Hanyu can become the first man to repeat as Olympic champion since Dick Button in 1952. Fernández can become the third Spaniard to earn a Winter Olympic medal of any color in any sport, and the first since 1992.

The figure skating season continues next week with Nebelhorn Trophy in Germany, the final Olympic qualifying competition. North Korea could clinch its first spots in any sport for the Olympics in the pairs event.

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MORE: What to watch every day of PyeongChang Olympics

USOC letter assures Olympians about South Korea security

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The U.S. Olympic Committee’s security chief sent a letter to potential Winter Olympians saying there are no indications that recent developments between the U.S. and North Korea have compromised security in South Korea.

The letter, obtained by The Associated Press shortly after it was sent Friday, makes no suggestion that the U.S. is considering skipping the PyeongChang Winter Games for security reasons.

But Chief Security Officer Nicole Deal does write that provocations that have been volleyed between the United States and North Korea are likely to persist for the foreseeable future, and “should not be dismissed as insignificant nor feared as precursors of an inevitable conflict.”

The letter comes at the end of a week in which France’s sports minister suggested the country’s athletes would stay home if security could not be guaranteed.

The International Olympic Committee, trying to calm concerns, reiterated that in conversations with high-level officials in China and South Korea, none have expressed doubt about the Winter Games proceeding as scheduled, next February.

The USOC also sent out a public statement Friday from CEO Scott Blackmun.

“We will continue to work with our State Department and local organizers to ensure that our athletes, and our entire delegation, are safe,” he said.

The letter, sent to athletes, national governing bodies and other Olympic leaders in the United States, said the USOC’s security division is operating as “business as usual for our security planning and preparations.”

Deal writes that the USOC is reviewing crisis management plans that address a range of potential scenarios “to ensure our athletes, and our entire delegation, are safe.”

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MORE: What to watch every day of PyeongChang Olympics