LA 2024 Olympic Opening, Closing Ceremonies venue TBD

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Los Angeles 2024 has not decided on its venue for the Opening and Closing Ceremonies, bid chairman Casey Wasserman said in an NBC Los Angeles interview that aired Sunday.

In August 2015 and February 2016, LA 2024 Olympic bid documents listed the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum as the proposed venue for ceremonies (in addition to track and field). The Coliseum also held those events at the 1932 and 1984 Olympics.

Los Angeles is bidding against Paris and Budapest for the 2024 Olympics. IOC members will vote to choose the 2024 Olympic host city in September in Lima, Peru. The final bid file submission to the IOC is due Feb. 3, at which point LA 2024 will have to submit its planned ceremonies venue.

Recent reports have said that the Los Angeles Rams’ football stadium in nearby Inglewood, projected to open in 2019, could be a ceremonies venue. That could carry its own set of complications.

“Specific to ceremonies or other things, we haven’t reached a final decision,” Wasserman said in Sunday’s interview. “Obviously, that’s something we have to have an engaged dialogue with, which we’re in the middle of, with both the city and the IOC. There’s lots of give and takes on both fronts. Obviously, by February we’ll make a decision on that.”

Wasserman also said his biggest worry “is that what we’re selling isn’t what [the IOC members] want to buy.”

“We are who we are,” Wasserman said. “We are a young, dynamic city that’s all about the intersection of creativity and innovation. It’s forward-thinking, and we are competing against two very different kind of cities from Europe.”

VIDEO: LA 2024 Olympic bid venue tour

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Tahiti chosen for Olympic surfing competition at 2024 Paris Games

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Paris 2024 Olympic organizers want the surfing competition to be held in Tahiti, an island in French Polynesia that is nearly 10,000 miles from Paris.

It would break the record for the farthest Olympic medal competition to be held outside the host. In 1956, equestrian events were moved out of Melbourne due to quarantine laws and held five months earlier in Stockholm, some 9,700 miles away.

The Paris 2024 executive board approved the site Thursday — specifically, the village of Teahupo’o — and will propose it to the IOC. It beat out other applicants Biarritz, Lacanau, Les Landes and La Torche, all part of mainland France.

Surfing will debut at the 2020 Tokyo Games but is not on the permanent Olympic program. Surfing was among sports added to the Paris 2024 program in June and could be added for the 2028 Los Angeles Games.

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Adam Jones, five-time MLB All-Star, becomes Olympic eligible

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Should the U.S. qualify for baseball’s Olympic return, a five-time MLB All-Star could be eligible for its roster in Tokyo. And he has interest.

Outfielder Adam Jones signed with the Orix Buffaloes of Japan’s domestic league, which, unlike MLB, will take an Olympic break next summer to allow players to take part in the first Olympic baseball tournament in 12 years.

Jones, 34, made no mention of Olympic eligibility in a social media post announcing the signing. His Instagram avatar is a photo of him in a Team USA jersey from the World Baseball Classic.

Jones’ agent later said that Jones does have interest in playing for the U.S. in Tokyo, should an American team qualify in the spring.

“To play over in Japan has always been a desire of Adam’s, and the timing worked out that the Olympics happens to be played in Tokyo the first year of his contract,” Jones’ agent wrote in an email. “It wasn’t one of the factors on his decision BUT more of a [sic] addition to the overall package to decide to go.”

Jones called being part of the U.S.’ 2017 WBC title, “probably the best experience of my life so far, especially with sports,” according to The Associated Press. He was one of five players to be on the U.S. team at each of the last two World Baseball Classics.

The U.S. still faces a difficult task to qualify for the Tokyo Games. It lost to Mexico last month in its first of up to three chances at qualifying tournaments, using a roster of mostly double-A and triple-A caliber players.

Major Leaguers are not expected to be made available for qualifying or for the Tokyo Games.

The next two qualifying tournaments will be in late March (an Americas qualifier in Arizona) and early April (a final, global qualifying event in Chinese Taipei). It remains to be seen how MLB clubs will go about releasing minor leaguers for a tournament that will take place during spring training.

Jones could become the third player with prior MLB All-Star experience to compete at the Olympics from any nation, joining Australian catcher Dave Nilsson and Canadian pitcher Jason Dickson.

Jones made five All-Star teams during an 11-year stint with the Baltimore Orioles from 2008-18 before playing for the Arizona Diamondbacks last season.

Many players competed at the Olympics before making an MLB All-Star team, including Stephen Strasburg and Jason Giambi.

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