Getty Images

Five men to watch at U.S. Olympic Diving Trials

Leave a comment

Diving sets the stage this weekend for three eventful weeks of U.S. Olympic Trials. Berths on the diving team headed to Rio will be awarded next week, and the squad will be known in full June 26.

Preliminary rounds take place each day in Indianapolis from Saturday through Tuesday, followed by finals June 22-26. Much of the action will be aired live on NBC, NBCSN and streamed on NBC Sports Live Extra.

U.S. divers qualified for Olympic berths in seven of eight events. They failed to secure a spot in the women’s synchronized springboard event, but will compete in men’s synchronized springboard and platform, men’s individual springboard and platform, women’s synchronized platform, and women’s individual springboard and platform.

Here are five men’s divers to watch at trials. Click here for the women.

David Boudia
The defending Olympic gold medalist in the men’s platform, Boudia is all but a lock to make the U.S. team. He won the platform event at both the 2008 and 2012 trials and remains a strong medal contender internationally; Boudia took silver at the past three World Championships. He also won bronze in London’s synchronized platform event with the since-retired Nick McCrory, but now dives with Steele Johnson. Boudia resides in West Lafayette, Ind., which is home to his alma mater, Purdue, and just an hour’s drive from Indianapolis.

Steele Johnson
Boudia and the 20-year-old Johnson have known each other since Boudia drove Johnson to practice years ago in the Indianapolis suburbs, and Johnson followed in Boudia’s footsteps by enrolling at Purdue. They now train together and are each other’s main domestic competition. Johnson captured the 2015 NCAA championship in men’s platform, and also won the event at the past three Winter Nationals (though Boudia was absent). The U.S. holds two Olympic berths in the event, so Boudia and Johnson are favored to secure them. Johnson is also a good bet in the synchronized platform event, with Boudia.

Troy Dumais
A veteran of four Olympics, the 36-year-old Dumais is looking to become the first diver to make five U.S. Olympic teams. He’s a long shot in the individual springboard event (he placed fourth at Winter Nationals), but a strong contender in synchronized springboard, the event in which he won 2012 Olympic bronze with Kristian Ipsen. Dumais and Ipsen placed second at the 2015 Summer and Winter Nationals.

Kristian Ipsen
Ipsen is the reigning national champ in men’s springboard and a favorite to capture one of two U.S. berths in the event. He’d be an outside medal contender in Rio, where he secured a bronze medal at the World Cup stop in February. The U.S. hasn’t won an Olympic springboard medal since 1996. In synchronized springboard, Ipsen placed second with Dumais at the two major national events last year, but also won both events with another partner, Sam Dorman. Divers can compete with multiple partners at some events, but Ipsen will not at trials. Ipsen and Dumais are paired together again, eyeing a return to the podium in Rio.

David Dinsmore
A dark horse in the men’s platform is Dinsmore, who won the event at last year’s Summer Nationals. Neither Boudia nor Johnson competed, however. With Johnson in the field at Winter Nationals, Dinsmore took third. The 19-year-old Miami student did, however, top Johnson at the World Cup event in Rio this past February. He edged out Johnson for bronze, and likely will need a similar performance to earn an Olympic berth.

MORE: Full NBC Olympic Trials broadcast schedule

Coronavirus forces Olympic soccer and boxing qualifiers to move

women's soccer
Getty Images
Leave a comment

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Olympic qualifying events in two sports were moved from the Chinese city of Wuhan on Wednesday because of an outbreak of a deadly viral illness.

A four-nation Asian qualifying group for the women’s soccer tournament was switched from the city at the center of the health scare to Nanjing.

The Asia-Oceania boxing qualifying tournament scheduled for Feb. 3-14 in Wuhan was cancelled. No new plans were announced.

The decisions followed Chinese health authorities telling people in Wuhan to avoid crowds and public gatherings.

The Asian Football Confederation said the round-robin group — featuring host China, Australia, Taiwan and Thailand — will be played on Feb. 3-9, retaining the same dates, in Nanjing.

More than 500 people have been infected and at least 17 killed since the outbreak emerged last month. The illness comes from a newly identified type of coronavirus.

Cases have also been reported in the United States, Japan, South Korea and Thailand. All involve people from Wuhan or who recently traveled there.

In the soccer qualifiers in China, two teams advance to a four-nation playoff round in March. That will decide which two teams from Asia join host Japan at the Tokyo Olympics.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!

 

Russia trounces U.S. boys’ hockey team to wrap up Youth Olympic Games

Leave a comment

Russia routed the U.S. 4-0 in the boys’ hockey gold medal game Wednesday, the final day of the Youth Olympic Games in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The U.S. had more penalties (three) than shots (two) in the first period. Russia’s Matvei Michkov converted the first power play and added an even-strength goal later in the period. Another power-play goal in the second period ran the score to 3-0.

Michkov just turned 15 and is projected as a top pick in the 2023 NHL Draft.

The gold medal was Russia’s ninth of the Games, excluding events that featured mixed-nationality teams, and 27th overall medal. Both numbers were the best of the competition.

Switzerland finished second in the medal tally with nine golds and 22 total. Japan, the surprise winner in girls’ hockey, matched Switzerland with nine golds among its 17 medals.

The U.S. had two gold medals and 11 total. Kiernan Fagan took gold in the boys’ ski slopestyle and silver in ski big air. Dusty Henricksen won the boys’ snowboard slopestyle.

Fagan, who turned 18 during the Games, already has a couple of World Cup podiums and finished 12th in slopestyle in last year’s world championships. He also took silver in big air and slopestyle in last year’s world junior championships.

Henricksen, who’ll turn 17 next month, placed 17th in the World Cup big air event last month in Atlanta.

OlympicTalk is on Apple News. Favorite us!