Sports Illustrated

Simone Biles, Aly Raisman part of Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue

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Simone Biles and Aly Raisman will become the latest Olympians to appear in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue.

“I am thrilled to include the gold medal-winning, U.S. women’s gymnasts Aly Raisman and Simone Biles in this year’s Swimsuit issue,” magazine editor MJ Day said on the magazine’s website. “Aly and Simone represent all that is beautiful and strong and inspiring in women today. Women that are not only elite athletes, that are captivating and impressive in their own professional accomplishments.”

In recent years, Olympians Natalie Coughlin, Alex MorganRonda RouseyLindsey Vonn and Caroline Wozniacki appeared in the issue that is normally published in February.

In 2012, Olympians Rafael NadalChris Paul and Michael Phelps posed with female model Bar Refaeli in the issue.

Raisman also appeared in ESPN the Magazine’s Body Issue in 2015.

PHOTOS: Three members of Final Five at Golden Globes

Sports Illustrated presents Michael Phelps with ‘Greatest Olympian of All-Time’ award

Michael Phelps
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While Michael Phelps lost out to LeBron James for the 2016 title of Sportsperson of the Year, he received a different honor at last night’s Sports Illustrated Sportsperson of the Year gala at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn.

Phelps was recognized during the ceremony by three fellow Olympians: swimmer Tom Dolan, gymnast Aly Raisman and track & field athlete Jackie Joyner-Kersee. They presented him with a special award naming him the ‘Greatest Olympian of All-Time.’

Phelps is the most decorated Olympian ever with 28 Olympic medals, 23 of which are gold.

In his speech, Phelps called the award a “tremendous honor” and described James as “truly an inspiration.”

He reminisced about both the beginning of his career and the previous year, which saw him win six Olympic medals in Rio after coming out of a short post-London retirement. He also was chosen to carry the U.S. flag in the Rio Opening Ceremony, and became a husband and father.

“Being able to look at this and look back at my career, it almost doesn’t even seem possible,” Phelps said. “But like these guys [Dolan, Raisman and Joyner-Kersee] said, it was all done off hard work and dedication. I remember as a kid dreaming that I wanted to win one Olympic medal.

“For me being able to have one more year where I came back and finished things exactly how I wanted, I know there are some people out there who know what that feels like, I feel like I’m on top of the world. I was able to get married this year, have my first child. I literally feel like the luckiest man in the world.”

James spent part of his own acceptance speech marveling over Phelps. “We talk about you at the crib so much, man,” James said to Phelps from the stage. “You’re literally a fish. Literally. I have no idea how you do what you do.”

MORE: Simone Biles cheers for LeBron James at Cleveland Caveliers game (photos)

Lindsey Vonn discusses Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue

Lindsey Vonn
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Lindsey Vonn began her Alpine skiing season in November, but she also spent time that month shooting for Sports Illustrated‘s swimsuit issue.

Vonn discussed appearing in the edition of the magazine for the second time (2010 being the other, the same month she won her Olympic downhill title).

“It’s showing that strong, athletic women can be beautiful,” Vonn told media in La Thuile, Italy, after crashing out of a World Cup downhill on Friday. “It’s not just skinny models. There’s a lot of different body types in this world. Everyone is beautiful in their own way. It definitely was hard for me to have the self-confidence to do something like that. I got over it, and I’m learning to be more comfortable in my own skin. I’m proud that I’m able to be among such beautiful women.”

Vonn appeared in the magazine with models and fellow Olympians Ronda Rousey (2008 judo bronze medalist) and Danish tennis player Caroline Wozniacki.

She has said she would be open to appearing in the swimsuit issue again in the future.

MORE: Vonn bit trying to break up dog fight