Carmelo Anthony seems pretty intent on returning to the Olympics next year. And, from Anthony’s words, so are LeBron James and Chris Paul.
“We [James, Paul and I] talk about it [winning gold in Rio] all the time,’’ Anthony said, according to the New York Post. “Just about how we want to go out and end it the next year with the Olympics, just how much we want to take from this experience. I’m going on four [Olympics], LeBron is going on four. Paul going for three. We’re connected by the hip.’’
James and Anthony were the youngest members of the 2004 U.S. Olympic team that earned bronze in Athens, the first time since 1988 that the Americans didn’t take gold.
They returned as part of the Redeem Team in 2008 and again in 2012 in London.
James and Anthony can become the first U.S. men’s basketball players to play in four Olympics next year.
For a spot on the 12-man roster in Rio, Anthony will have to contend with competition at forward from the likes of LaMarcus Aldridge, Kevin Durant, Rudy Gay, Paul George, Blake Griffin, Kawhi Leonard and Kevin Love.
James, who reportedly has a spot on the Rio 2016 team if he wants it, is the all-time U.S. Olympic men’s basketball leader in points (273), passing David Robinson during the London Olympics, according to USA Basketball.
James won’t be passing the all-time leader across all nations any time soon. That’s held by Brazilian legend Oscar Schmidt, whose tally over five Olympics was a reported 1,093.
John Wall doesn’t expect to make U.S. Olympic team
Olympic champion Gregorio Paltrinieri swam the second-fastest 1500m freestyle in history, clocking 14:33.10 in his native Italy on Thursday.
Paltrinieri, 25, missed Chinese Sun Yang‘s world record from the 2012 Olympics by 2.08 seconds.
The Italian now owns the second- and third-fastest times in history, including his 14:34.10 from the 2016 European Championships, also held at the 2012 Olympic pool in London.
Paltrinieri is a versatile distance swimmer. At last year’s world championships, he finished sixth in the open-water 10km to qualify for the Olympics, then won the 800m free in the pool in a European record time and finished with 1500m bronze, just missing a third straight world title in that event.
German Florian Wellbrock won the 1500m in 14:36.54 at worlds, with Paltrinieri finishing 2.21 seconds back.
Sun, 28, was in February banned eight years stemming from destroying a drug-test sample with a hammer in September 2018. Sun, who focused more on the 200m and 400m frees in recent years, did not race the 1500m at the 2017 or 2019 Worlds.
Top-level swim meets in the U.S. are scheduled to resume in November with the Tyr Pro Series.
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Bianca Andreescu withdrew from the U.S. Open, citing “unforeseen challenges, including the Covid pandemic” compromising her ability to prepare to defend her Grand Slam title.
“I have taken this step in order to focus on my match fitness and ensure that I return ready to play at my highest level,” Andreescu, a 20-year-old Canadian, posted on social media. “The US Open victory last year has been the high point of my career thus far and I will miss not being there. However, I realize that the unforeseen challenges, including the Covid pandemic, have compromised my ability to prepare and compete to the degree necessary to play at my highest level.”
Andreescu’s absence means the U.S. Open, the first Grand Slam tournament since tennis resumed amid the coronavirus pandemic, will be without both 2019 male and female singles champions.
Rafael Nadal previously announced he would not defend his title, saying he would rather not travel given the global situation. Roger Federer is also out after knee surgery. Women’s No. 1 Ash Barty didn’t enter, either, citing travel concerns.
Last year, Andreescu made her U.S. Open title run as the 15th seed, sweeping Serena Williams in the final. Ranked 208th a year earlier, she became the first player born in the 2000s to win a Slam and the first teen Slam winner since Maria Sharapova at the 2006 U.S. Open.
Andreescu then missed the Australian Open in January due to rehab from a knee injury that forced her to retire during a match at the WTA Finals on Oct. 30. She also missed the French Open and Wimbledon in 2019 following a rotator cuff tear.
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