NBC Olympics Tokyo 2020 logo
NBC Olympics

NBC Olympics unveils Tokyo 2020 logo

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NBC Olympics unveiled its logo for the Tokyo 2020 Games on Wednesday, the 54th anniversary of the Opening Ceremony of the first Olympics held in Tokyo.

The 2020 Tokyo Games start July 22, 2020, with the first event being softball’s return to the Olympics. The Opening Ceremony is July 24, 2020.

NBC will air its 17th Olympics in 2020. Its first Games were in Tokyo in 1964, when competition was broadcast in black and white.

NBC aired every Winter Olympics since 2002 and every Summer Olympics since 1988. With its current contract through 2032, NBC will have covered 23 Olympics.

Back in 1964, the rights fee to air the Olympics broke $1 million for the first time. NBC scheduled 14 hours of coverage with the first live Opening Ceremony telecast. By Rio 2016, NBC’s number of hours between broadcast and digital was 6,755.

As for the 2020 logo:

“Our branding goal was to develop a logo that honored the rich culture of Japan, while also exploring the vibrant union of art, technology, fashion and pop culture that defines Tokyo today,” said David Barton, Art Director, NBC Olympics. “The design of the word ‘Tokyo’ is bold and fluid, illustrating with each character the dynamic movement of an Olympic athlete with a subtle reference to the distinct line forms of the Japanese written language.”

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NBC Olympics Tokyo 2020 logo

NBC Olympics Tokyo 2020 logo

Past NBC Olympics logos:

NBC Olympics PyeongChang 2018 logo

 

 

Hirscher leads by 0.56 seconds after first run in World Champs slalom

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Marcel Hirscher swept into the finish area and wagged his finger triumphantly in front of the camera.

The message was clear: The ski king is back.

The Austrian produced an emphatic response to relinquishing his giant slalom title two days earlier at the world championships by taking a 0.56-second lead after the first run of the slalom on Sunday.

Only Alexis Pinturault of France was within a second of Hirscher, who was on course to win a record-tying seventh career gold medal at the worlds.

Marco Schwarz of Austria was in third place, 1.22 seconds off the lead.

Hirscher, the seven-time overall World Cup champion, showed no ill-effects from the cold that has been affecting him this week. After the giant slalom on Friday, he said he would be going straight back to bed to rest up for the slalom.

He looked in good working order on Sunday.

As the third skier on the course, Hirscher took 1.70 seconds off No. 2 starter Henrik Kristoffersen, who beat Hirscher to GS gold on Friday, and more than two seconds off Clement Noel, who came to the worlds in form after wins in Wengen and Kitzbuehel.

Save for Hirscher crashing, only Pinturault looks capable to denying the Austrian a third slalom gold at the worlds — something only the great Ingemar Stenmark has achieved. Pinturault was only 0.06 seconds behind Hirscher at the third checkpoint but he went wide at the first turn on the final descent and lost half a second.

“I’m still in the fight,” Pinturault said, “and still have a chance in the second leg. That’s the essential (thing).”

Daniel Yule of Switzerland was 0.28 behind Hirscher at the last split before falling at the start to the final descent.

Hirscher also won the slalom at the 2013 and 2017 worlds. A seventh career gold at the worlds would tie the men’s record held by compatriot Toni Sailer from the late 1950s.

Austria, a storied Alpine skiing nation, needs Hirscher to deliver in the final event to avoid finishing the world championships without a gold medal for the first time since Crans Montana, Switzerland, in 1987. The women’s team has already finished with no medals and that hasn’t happened since Schladming, Austria, in 1982.

Watch an encore presentation of the first run on NBCSN at 7:00 a.m. ET. The second and deciding run can be seen live starting at 8:00 a.m. ET on NBCSN and NBC Sports Gold.

Mikaela Shiffrin proving she’s in league of her own

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There are ski racers, and then there is Mikaela Shiffrin.

NBC Sports essayist Tim Layden calls Shiffrin the “rarest creature,” a prodigy who continues to get better with age.

Shiffrin’s stardom took off with her heart-stopping slalom gold medal in the 2014 Olympics. It looked like she would ascend to an even higher level four years later in PyeongChang when she claimed a gold medal in the giant slalom, but then she lost a battle with her nerves and failed to win a medal in the slalom. She did capture a silver in the combined event.

That Olympic disappointment has fueled her historic World Cup season. She became the youngest skier to pass the 50 win mark. She broke the women’s career record for slalom victories, and she became the first skier ever to win four-straight world championship titles in a single event.

A true prodigy indeed.