Ryan Lochte’s first individual Olympic gold medal goes missing

Ryan Lochte
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Ryan Lochte said his “No. 1” gold medal from his first individual Olympic title in 2008 has gone missing.

“I don’t know where it is,” Lochte told Graham Bensinger in an interview clip published Wednesday. “I have a couple guesses.”

Lochte believed a former agent or his mom had the medal, but said they told him they don’t have it.

The gold medal carries added emotional weight for Lochte. It came in the 200m backstroke at the 2008 Beijing Games, where Lochte broke his own world record.

Before that, Lochte earned relay golds, plus individual silver and bronze medals behind Michael Phelps in his previous individual Olympic events. About a half-hour after the 200m backstroke in Beijing, Lochte took another bronze in a race won by Phelps.

But the 200m back in Beijing was all about Lochte, defeating the defending Olympic champion Aaron Peirsol, who beat Lochte at the Olympic Trials and tied Lochte’s world record in Omaha.

In the Water Cube crowd, Lochte’s father and first swim coach, Steven, cried. He previously told his son that he was a good swimmer, but greatness came when you break a world record and win a gold medal in the Olympics.

“When he did the parade around the pool, he got up on the bleachers, and I leaned over the railing,” Steven said in “In Deep with Ryan Lochte,” an NBC Sports film on Peacock. “I whispered, ‘You’re great.'”

Lochte remembered it.

“I could just see the tears of joy coming from him and how proud he was of me,” he said.

Lochte, 36, is bidding to qualify for his fifth Olympics next year and to become the second-oldest U.S. Olympic swimmer in history after Dara Torres.

He is coming back from suspensions for his Rio gas-station incident and then for receiving an IV infusion of an illegal amount of a legal substance. Lochte was caught because he published a photo of the infusion on social media.

His best chance to qualify for the Olympics appears to be in the 200m individual medley, where Lochte is a four-time world champion and the world-record holder. He ranks fifth among Americans in the event since the start of 2019. The top two at trials in June qualify for Tokyo.

MORE: ‘In Deep with Ryan Lochte’: Watch clips from Peacock film

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Joel Embiid gains U.S. citizenship, mum on Olympic nationality

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Philadelphia 76ers All-Star center Joel Embiid said he is now a U.S. citizen and it’s way too early to think about what nation he would represent at the Olympics.

“I just want to be healthy and win a championship and go from there,” he said, according to The Associated Press.

Embiid, 28, was born in Cameroon and has never competed in a major international tournament. In July, he gained French nationality, a step toward being able to represent that nation at the 2024 Paris Olympics.

In the spring, French media reported that Embiid started the process to become eligible to represent France in international basketball, quoting national team general manager Boris Diaw.

Embiid was second in NBA MVP voting this season behind Serbian Nikola Jokic. He was the All-NBA second team center.

What nation Embiid represents could have a major impact on the Paris Games.

In Tokyo, a French team led by another center, Rudy Gobert, handed the U.S. its first Olympic defeat since 2004. That was in group play. The Americans then beat the French in the gold-medal game 87-82.

That France team had five NBA players to the U.S.’ 12: Nicolas BatumEvan FournierTimothe Luwawu-CabarrotFrank Ntilikina and Gobert.

Anthony Davis, who skipped the Tokyo Olympics, is the lone U.S. center to make an All-NBA team in the last five seasons. In that time, Embiid made four All-NBA second teams and Gobert made three All-NBA third teams.

No Olympic team other than the U.S. has ever had two reigning All-NBA players on its roster.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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LA 2028, Delta unveil first-of-its-kind emblems for Olympics, Paralympics

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Emblems for the 2028 Los Angeles Games that include logos of Delta Air Lines is the first integration of its kind in Olympic and Paralympic history.

Organizers released the latest set of emblems for the LA 2028 Olympics and Paralympics on Thursday, each with a Delta symbol occupying the “A” spot in LA 28.

Two years ago, the LA 2028 logo concept was unveiled with an ever-changing “A” that allowed for infinite possibilities. Many athletes already created their own logos, as has NBC.

“You can make your own,” LA28 chairperson Casey Wasserman said in 2020. “There’s not one way to represent Los Angeles, and there is strength in our diverse cultures. We have to represent the creativity and imagination of Los Angeles, the diversity of our community and the big dreams the Olympic and Paralympic Games provide.”

Also in 2020, Delta was announced as LA 2028’s inaugural founding partner. Becoming the first partner to have an integrated LA 2028 emblem was “extremely important for us,” said Emmakate Young, Delta’s managing director, brand marketing and sponsorships.

“It is a symbol of our partnership with LA, our commitment to the people there, as well as those who come through LA, and a commitment to the Olympics,” she said.

The ever-changing emblem succeeds an angelic bid logo unveiled in February 2016 when the city was going for the 2024 Games, along with the slogan, “Follow the Sun.” In July 2017, the IOC made a historic double awarding of the Olympics and Paralympics — to Paris for 2024 and Los Angeles for 2028.

The U.S. will host its first Olympics and Paralympics since 2002 (and first Summer Games since 1996), ending its longest drought between hosting the Games since the 28-year gap between 1932 and 1960.

Delta began an eight-year Olympic partnership in 2021, becoming the official airline of Team USA and the 2028 Los Angeles Games.

Athletes flew to this year’s Winter Games in Beijing on chartered Delta flights and will do so for every Games through at least 2028.

Previously, Delta sponsored the last two Olympics held in the U.S. — the 1996 Atlanta Games and the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Games.

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