The Big Four of U.S. swimming are competing together in a Pro Series meet for likely the last time before the U.S. Olympic Trials in Omaha, Neb., from June 26-July 3.
Phelps returns to Mesa for the third straight year. It was a comeback meet in 2014, following a 20-month competitive retirement, and 2015, following a six-month suspension.
This year, it’s a home meet, as Phelps moved from Baltimore to Arizona to follow coach Bob Bowman last year.
Ledecky is coming off winning five gold medals and breaking three world records at the 2015 World Championships and then breaking another world record in January.
Franklin endured a winless stretch last year but notched a victory at the last Pro Series meet in March.
Then there’s Lochte, who last year won his fourth straight World title in the 200m individual medley. He’s feeling fit after a rough couple of years riddled with injuries.
The Pro Series continues in Charlotte in May and in Santa Clara and Indianapolis in June ahead of the Olympic Trials.