Christian Coleman is suspended. Who are the Olympic men’s 100m favorites?

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Christian Coleman was the world’s fastest man in 2017, 2018 and 2019, but now he is ineligible for the Tokyo Olympics, pending an appeal of a two-year ban for missed drug tests. The 100m title, a crown jewel event of the Games, is now even more up for grabs. Remember, Usain Bolt retired in 2017.

A look at the world’s other fastest men since the start of 2019:

Noah Lyles (9.86 seconds, May 2019)
Lyles, a 23-year-old who just missed the Rio Olympic 200m team coming out of high school, has been just as dominant over 200m as Coleman has been at 100m in this Olympic cycle. He added the 100m in earnest in 2018 and announced a bid to qualify for the U.S. Olympic team in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m. Lyles did not contest the 100m at the world championships — where he took the 200m gold — but won two of his three 100m starts on the Diamond League in 2019.

Divine Oduduru (9.86, June 2019)
The Nigerian won the 2019 NCAA 100m title for Texas Tech, but before that was known for his 200m — reaching the Rio Olympic semifinals at age 19 and winning the 2018 NCAA title. Oduduru entered the 2019 World Championships ranked second in the world in the 100m and third in the 200m. He did not contest the 100m and was eliminated in the 200m semifinals.

Michael Norman (9.86, July 2020)
The world’s fastest 400m sprinter in 2018 and 2019. Norman, eliminated in the 2019 World Championships 400m semifinals while injured, in July ran the 100m for the first time in four years. Though Norman last year ruled out a 200m-400m double at the Tokyo Games, the time put him on the 100m radar, should he choose to move down in distance for the U.S. Olympic Trials.

Justin Gatlin (9.87, June 2019)
Bidding to become, at 39, the oldest man to win an Olympic medal of any color in any track (but not field or road) event. Gatlin, the 2004 Olympic 100m champ, was Bolt’s closest rival late in the Jamaican’s career, even winning the 2017 World 100m title over Bolt. Gatlin dealt with injuries in this Olympic cycle, but he upped his Tokyo prospects by taking silver behind Coleman at last year’s worlds.

Andre De Grasse (9.90, Sept. 2019)
The Rio Olympic 100m bronze medalist and 200m silver medalist. The Canadian suffered season-ending hamstring injuries in 2017 and 2018, then came back strong to take 100m bronze and 200m silver at 2019 Worlds.

Trayvon Bromell (9.90, July 2020)
Bromell, who clocked 9.84 at age 19 in 2015, went two years between races after Achilles surgeries in 2016 and 2017. When he clocked 9.90 on July 24, it was his first time breaking 10 seconds in more than four years. It put him back in contention for the U.S. Olympic team, which will be the top three at trials.

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Novak Djokovic wins 10th Australian Open, ties Rafael Nadal for most men’s Slam titles

Novak Djokovic Australian Open
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MELBOURNE, Australia — Novak Djokovic was simply too good at the most crucial moments and claimed his 10th Australian Open championship and 22nd Grand Slam title overall by beating Stefanos Tsitsipas 6-3, 7-6 (4), 7-6 (5) in the final at Rod Laver Arena on Sunday night.

The victory allows Djokovic to return to No. 1 in the ATP rankings.

The 35-year-old from Serbia did not compete in the Australian Open a year ago after being deported from the country because he was not vaccinated against COVID-19.

Government restrictions have eased since, and he was able to get a visa this time despite still not having gotten the shots against the illness caused by the coronavirus.

Now Djokovic has run his winning streak at the hard-court tournament to 28 matches.

His 10th trophy in Australia adds to the record he already held. His 22 major championships — which include seven from Wimbledon, three from the U.S. Open and two from the French Open — are tied with Rafael Nadal for the most by a man in the history of tennis.

Tsitsipas fell to 0-2 in major finals. He also lost to Djokovic at the 2021 French Open.

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Chock/Bates, Knierim/Frazier futures unclear after clear-cut wins at figure skating nationals

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SAN JOSE, California – They have both begun the new Olympic cycle as the undisputed national leaders in their figure skating disciplines, cementing that status with U.S. titles Saturday – the fourth for ice dancers Madison Chock and Evan Bates, the second for the pairs’ team of Alexa Knierim and Brandon Frazier.

At this point, their respective paths to the 2026 Winter Games seem free and clear of challengers.

The question for the dancers and the pair is how far down that road they intend to go.

“I don’t know what the next four years will hold,” Chock said. “But we’re committed to each other and our goals, and we’ll decide when the time comes.”

Chock, 30, and Bates, 33, engaged to be married in the summer of 2024, have been at this a long time. And their trophy case is packed to the gills, with the only gaps a world title and an individual Olympic medal.

They have competed together at the senior level in the U.S. Championships for 12 seasons, winning medals at the last 11. They have been to nine world championships, winning three medals, and three Olympics (four for Bates), winning a yet-to-be-awarded team medal last year in Beijing.

(The unresolved doping case involving Russian skater Kamila Valiyeva has delayed the awarding of the 2022 team event medals. Maybe it will become a wedding present for Chock and Bates. Or a fifth anniversary present…)

FIGURE SKATING NATIONALS: Full Scores | Broadcast Schedule

Until this year, Chock and Bates had faced formidable rivals on the national scene – 2014 Olympic champions Meryl Davis and Charlie White; 2018 Olympic bronze medalists Maia Shibutani and Alex Shibutani; and 2022 Olympic bronze medalists Madison Hubbell and Zachary Donohue, with whom Chock and Bates traded gold medals over the previous four seasons. All have retired from competition.

Saturday, they cruised to the gold medal by 22.29 points over Caroline Green and Michael Parsons, the largest ice dance victory margin at nationals since 2006. In a discipline where established hierarchy weighs heavily, Chock and Bates find themselves in the unfamiliar position of being on a metaphorical easy street to the top step of the U.S. podium.

“We – at least I – felt nervous today,” Bates said. “We (still) felt compelled to skate well. The lack of maybe the Hubbell-Donohue back and forth did not mitigate the specialness today.”

Knierim, 31, and Frazier, 30, have similar longevity at nationals, even if they did not team up until 2020, taking the U.S. title in their first season together.

Knierim skated at seven nationals with her husband, Chris, winning three titles, Frazier at seven with Haven Denney, winning once.

Knierim and Frazier had expected to retire after last season, when they missed nationals because Frazier contracted Covid but went on to place sixth at the Olympics and unexpectedly became the first U.S. team to win a pairs’ world title since 1979. Their experiences on the Stars on Ice Tour led them to reconsider.

“It made sense on our timeline to move on,” Knierim told me in September. “We had done everything we could in two years.

“Yet it felt like it could be sad or disappointing to end a really talented career together so soon. Being on tour had opened our eyes to how in synch and unified we were on the ice. So there was a little bit of curiosity, a feeling of ‘What else are we capable of?’”

Their personal circumstances have changed during the course of this season. Chris Knierim starts work Thursday as skating director of a rink in the Chicago suburbs, and the Knierims recently bought a house in that area.

Knierim and Frazier have been training at a rink in Irvine, California. Should they decide to continue as competitors after this season, it would almost certainly entail a move to Chicago for Frazier.

Knierim insisted her house purchase was not an indication of what her plans with Frazier are.

“Right now, we are staying the course, based in Irvine through the world championships (in late March),” Knierim said before winning her fifth U.S. title.

“We do have some changes ahead of us. But I’d hate to jump ahead and say yes or no to next season. We learned that last season.”

Frazier spoke Saturday of reflecting throughout this season about their personal journeys and their partnership, the kind of reflection that often accompanies doing something for the last time.

“We just are trying to soak it in as if it could be your last, but the future is unknown,” Frazier said.

Knierim and Frazier prevailed Saturday with the largest winning margin, 31.11 points, in the 18 years that the International Judging System has been used at nationals.

They saved several points due to her quick thinking.

After Frazier put his hand to the ice on the triple toe loop that was to open a triple-double-double-jump combination, Knierim saw that her partner was going to follow with only a single jump and followed suit. It led to the delightful oddity of side-by-side single toe loops.

Nicely executed ones, too.

Philip Hersh, who has covered figure skating at every Winter Olympics since 1980, is a special contributor to NBCSports.com.

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