Rio Police Exaggerated Lochte’s Story

Written by Ben Rohrbach at YahooSports.com

There is no evidence Ryan Lochte or his three U.S. swimming teammates ever entered — let alone damaged — a bathroom at the gas station where a late-night rest stop exploded into an international incident at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics last week, according to a USA Today report on Monday night.

In a press conference called to debunk Lochte’s claims of a robbery at gunpoint, Rio police chief Fernando Veloso painted the bathroom as a crime scene, claiming American swimmers Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and Jimmy Feigen, along with Lochte, broke a soap dispenser and mirror. Meanwhile, media outlets cited law enforcement officials who accused them of also breaking a bathroom door.

However, there is no such damage, and none of those items appear to have been replaced, per the USA Today report. Likewise, the newspaper reviewed extensive security footage from the Shell station, including a camera aimed at the restroom entrance, and the swimmers never entered the door.

Instead, the swimmers urinated on the backside of the gas station, and an intoxicated Lochte tore a “loosely attached” advertisement from an exterior wall, according to a police statement from Bentz and an eyewitness account to USA Today by Fernando Deluz — a disc jockey who translated the heated discussion between the American swimmers and the Portuguese-speaking security guards.

“If I hadn’t involved myself,” Deluz told the newspaper, adding that one guard had drawn his gun, “I thought — the police chief told me, ‘Man, if you hadn’t gone there in that moment, a tragedy could have occurred.”

Furthermore, the armed security guards indeed demanded payment from the Americans, per Deluz.

This latest report raises questions about the Rio police chief’s public portrayal of the U.S. swimmers as more vandals than victims, as well as his willingness to overlook actions taken by security guards, who were off-duty law enforcement officers. While it does not excuse them for public urination and tearing a poster off a wall, one can understand — considering the language barrier and level of intoxication — how Lochte & Co. thought they were robbed at gunpoint by men posing as police.

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Speedo and Ralph Lauren Drop Lochte

Written by the BBC Staff at BBC.com

Four sponsors have dropped disgraced US Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte, including swimwear manufacturer Speedo and fashion label Ralph Lauren.

They were followed by announcements from skin care firm Syneron-Candela and Japanese mattress maker Airweave.

It comes after Lochte lied about being robbed at gunpoint by a policeman after a night out during the Rio Olympics.

Lochte, a 12-time Olympic medalist, has earned millions of dollars through endorsements.

Speedo, the biggest sponsor of the four, said: “We cannot condone behaviour that is counter to the values this brand has long stood for.”

Lochte, aged 32, said he respected Speedo’s decision, and thanked the company.

“I am grateful for the opportunities that our partnership has afforded me over the years,” he said.

Speaking on US talk show Today, Lochte said: “I made a mistake and I definitely learned from this. They put on a great Games… and my immature, intoxicated behaviour tarnished that a little.”

Ralph Lauren, which has removed some of Lochte’s images from its website, said its sponsorship of the swimmer had been only for the Rio Olympics and would not be renewed.

Ralph Lauren and Airweave both stressed that they would continue their support of the US Olympic and Paralympic teams.

Syneron-Candela said: “We hold our employees to high standards, and we expect the same of our business partners.”

Speedo said it would donate a $50,000 portion of Lochte’s sponsorship fee to the charity Save The Children’s Brazilian operation.

The value of Lochte’s Speedo sponsorship has not been disclosed. The contract reportedly expires this year after 10 years.

The US business magazine Forbes calculated that in the year of the 2012 London Olympics, Lochte earned about $2m in sponsorships from companies such as Gillette, Nissan, AT&T and Gatorade.

Lochte’s performance at Rio did not reach the heights of his London triumph, but Forbes estimated his endorsements would still have been between $1m-$2m.

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Usain Bolt and His 9 Best Moments from Rio


Written By Patrick Marché At Rio2016.com

In celebration of Usain Bolt’s nine Olympic gold medals, we remember the Jamaican’s nine best moments at the Games

The greatest sprinter of all time said goodbye to the Olympic Games in perfect fashion on Friday (19 August) night, winning the 4×100 metre relay and claiming his ninth gold medal. Usain Bolt completed his triple triple – winning the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay at three consecutive editions of the Olympic Games: Beijing 2008, London 2012 and now at Rio 2016.

1. Humble entry into Rio

With the eyes of the world on him as he touched down in Rio de Janiero, Bolt may have surprised some by how understated his arrival was. The sprint superstar came through the arrival gates at Rio’s international airport, saluted the world’s press before quietly disappearing into a private car.

The Jamaican athletes did not immediately move into the Athletes’ Village and many expected Bolt to stay in one of the swankiest hotels in Rio. But the sprint star opted to stay at an inconspicuous hotelwith the rest of the Jamaican team close to the international airport and close to the sprint team’s training facility. And as for his requests, Bolt merely asked for a bit of Jamaican food and some milk and cereal for his night snacks – keeping it simple.

2. ‘These children are our future’

While access to Bolt was highly restricted to reporters desperate for a line on the big star of the Games, the Jamaican showed his softer side on 2 August, when a group of children from underprivileged communities surrounding his training base was invited to come down and meet the living legend.

Bolt posted a photo of him and the kids doing his iconic lightning bolt pose on Instagram and underneath his caption read: “They say these children are from the most dangerous communities (favelas) here in Rio. They are our future and I’m very happy I got to meet them.”

3. Press Conference Goes Samba

At his only official public appearance before he launched his Rio 2016 campaign, Bolt was asked at a press conference whether he considered himself an athlete or an entertainer. “I am both,” he said. “I’m definitely a sprinter first, but I like to entertain because that’s what people come for.” By the end, the proceedings had turned into a live samba show and the Jamaican, wiggling his hips alongside a dozen carnival dancers, never looked out of place.

4. The 100m semi-final and ‘thatphoto

Bolt produced what is sure to become one of the most iconic sports photos of all time, when cruising to victory in his 100m semi-final. As he is known to do, with the race won, Bolt took his foot off the pedal for the final 20 metres. And on this occasion it was a cheeky smile as he glanced over to photographers that will be forever immortalised. So relaxed while the rest of the competition struggle to catch his coat-tails – Cameron Spencer’s shot is the most ‘Bolt’ photo you are likely to see.

5. 100m final win has fans in a frenzy

Apart from the Olympic Stadium, the best place to watch Bolt pick up the first of his three gold medalswas at Jamaica House, where fans celebrated in a Caribbean party atmosphere. The level of tension as the sprinters lined up was only exceeded by the elation, as the big man crossed the line in a time of 9.81 seconds.

Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness joined the festivities and, with Bob Marley’s One Love playing in the background, had this to say: “Usain has is our beloved son, and from what I saw in the stadium, the world is proud of him. The stadium was literally willing him to win. It was an electrifying experience, I’ve never witnessed anything like it before.

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Neymar Plays Out of His Mind As Brazil Wins Gold In Soccer

Written by Tom McGowan at CNN.com

In the center circle, his teammates knelt in prayer, pleading for divine intervention.

All around him, 70,000 Brazilians inside the vast Maracana Stadium chanted his name, expecting — no, demanding — their nation’s biggest soccer star deliver a historic success at Rio 2016.

Neymar paused, gathering his thoughts as he stuttered towards the ball, almost grinding to a halt before stroking his penalty kick high to the left of Germany’s goalkeeper Timo Horn.

As the net rippled, Brazil celebrated. It had won Olympic soccer gold for the first time in its history.

A night of deafening noise and frantic play inside Rio’s iconic arena ended in triumph for the host nation, as a penalty shootout separated the sides after Saturday’s final finished 1-1 following extra time.

For Brazil, this was a cathartic success. This was a landmark victory over a country that had inflicted an humiliating 7-1 defeat on it two years ago, in the semifinal of its own World Cup.

Not this time.

If Brazilians were anxious ahead of this match, those anxieties were expressed with raucous support.

Before the national anthems had been sung, the stadium reverberated to the sound of one man’s name. “Ole, Ole, Ole, Ole, Ola, Neymar, Neymar” greeted the players as they took to the pitch.

Brazilians can even be forgiven for singing through the German anthem — an expression of excessive exuberance rather than hostility, perhaps.

And they didn’t have to wait long for Neymar to deliver his first telling contribution.

In the 26th minute, the captain and No. 10 sent a wonderful, looping free-kick beyond the despairing Horn to ignite a crowd who had arrived ready to combust.

Brazil was buoyant, but its newfound confidence was fragile. Germany hit the crossbar three times in the first half, with Sven Bender seeing his header come agonizingly close after 35 minutes.

The previous night, in the same venue, Germany’s women’s team had won gold for the first time, beating Sweden in the final.

The German men grew into their contest and grabbed a deserved equalizer just before the hour mark, as captain Max Meyer finished off a flowing move with a low shot from just inside the box.

After eight flawless kicks, Nils Petersen had the misfortune of seeing his shot saved by Weverton.

Up stepped Neymar, and the rest is now Brazilian soccer history.

For the 24-year-old it served as an answer to critics who lamented his and Brazil’s form in the opening matches of this competition, when it draw against both South Africa and Iraq.

“This is one of the best things that have happened in my life,” the Barcelona forward said. “That’s it.”

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Usain Bolt Is the Greatest Sprinter In History


Written By Callum Ng at CBC Sports

The 200-metre final went as scripted, with Usain Bolt proving his dominance yet again Thursday and Canada’s Andre De Grasse delivering another message to the sprint world.

The Jamaican ran the 200 in 19.78 seconds to easily win his third straight Olympic title in the event, adding to gold from Beijing and London. It also brings his career gold medal tally to eight, including his 100 victory on Sunday.

De Grasse, from Markham, Ont., comfortably took silver with a time of 20.02, a second Olympic medal to pair with his 100 bronze.

France’s Christophe Lemaitre was awarded bronze, edging Great Britain’s Adam Gemili in a photo finish after both were given a time of 20.12 seconds.

Afterwards, Bolt declared it his last individual race at the Olympics ahead of his retirement next year. He can add another medal in the 4×100 relay final on Friday. The Canadians also qualified.

“I’ve proven to the world I’m the greatest. This is what I came here for. That’s what I’m doing. This is why I said this is my last Olympics — I can’t prove anything else,” said Bolt.

“What else can I do to prove to the world I am the greatest?” he added. “I am trying to be one of the greatest. Be among [Muhammad] Ali and Pelé. I hope to be in that bracket after these Games.”

How the race unfolded

It was a pure foot race, with slower times the result of a damp track and a -0.5 m/s head wind.

And it was clearly Bolt’s race halfway around the bend, obliterating any ideas the 21-year-old Canadian might have had of beating the king.

A small storm of anticipation had built around the final, arising from De Grasse’s unorthodox challenge of Bolt in their Wednesday semifinal. They grinned at each other as they ran across the finish line in that race, Bolt winning, De Grasse in a Canadian record 19.80.

Tonight was much more serious.

“Yesterday I felt so good, ran a personal best, and today I felt pretty good in my warm-up and I tried to execute the best way I know how and I just came up a little bit short,” De Grasse said, belying his desire to win.

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Lochte May or May not Lied to Brazilian Police


Written by Dan Good at New York Daily News.com

Ryan Lochte and his U.S. swimming teammates lied about a gunpoint robbery in order to cover up an incident at a gas station bathroom — and used cash to pay for damages, according to Brazilian police officials.

Lochte, along with fellow swimmers Jack Conger, Gunnar Bentz, and Jimmy Feigen, stopped at a gas station in the Rio suburb of Barra da Tijuca at about 6 a.m. Sunday, the official told the Associated Press.

One of the swimmers tried to open the door of an outside bathroom – and after finding it locked, the swimmers allegedly pushed on the door and broke it.

An armed security guard confronted the swimmers, and a fight ensued, ABC News reports.

The guard’s gun was never used, and the swimmers ended up paying cash to cover the damages caused at the gas station before leaving, officials said.

While Lochte has returned to the United States ahead of a judge ordering that his passport be seized, the three other swimmers — Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger and Jimmy Feigen — planned to meet with Brazilian law enforcement Thursday.

Bentz and Conger have been released by local authorities after being pulled off a plane at Rio’s airport, with the understanding that discussions would continue. Conger and Bentz told police that the robbery story had been fabricated, the Associated Press reports.

Feigen also plans to talk to officials, USOC spokesperson Patrick Sandusky said.

Lochte was seen with girlfriend Kayla Reid Wednesday, not long after a Brazilian judge ordered his and other U.S. swimmers’ passports seized as authorities investigated their claims that they were held up at gunpoint.

Filing a false police report in Brazil is punishable by up to six months in detention or a fine.

The 12-time Olympic medalist defended his teammates in a Wednesday interview with NBC’s Matt Lauer, claiming that the robbery occurred amid growing speculation about the fateful night.

Lochte initially said that armed men approached the swimmers’ taxi — and that one of the men pointed a gun to his head. He later backtracked on some of those harrowing details, but remained adamant that the swimmers had been robbed.

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Walsh-Jennings, Ross Proud of their Bronze Medal


Written by Eun Kyung Kim at Today.com

American beach volleyball star Kerri Walsh Jennings has a newfound respect for a medal she used to see as a consolation prize.

“There’s no shame in a bronze medal. I used to think that, and I’m so ashamed of thinking that because there’s so much joy and hard work and love in this,” she said Thursday, holding up her hard-fought hardware.

“That’s my ego talking and that’s just ignorance to me,” she told TODAY’s Matt Lauer Thursday. “We won this, we didn’t lose. We won this. We lost our chance to win a gold, but we won this bronze model.”

Walsh Jennings and her partner April Ross won third place Wednesday night, just 24 hours after losing their chance at the gold medal match. The defeat represented the first loss for Walsh Jennings in her Olympic career.

“We were devastated the night before, literally devastated,” Walsh Jennings said. “We didn’t sleep a wink.”

But they came back for their final match fired up by the high stakes.

“You’re either get a medal or you go home empty handed,” Ross said. “There’s so much on the line.”

Asked if she and her partner will return four years from now, Ross indicated it was possible, but joked it could depend on the health of her partner, who already is the oldest female medal winner in beach volleyball history.

“I can totally see us still together in Tokyo,” Ross said. “I’m assuming she’ll have to have one more shoulder surgery before, but she’ll come back stronger than ever, like she always does.”

Walsh Jennings is now the most decorated beach volleyball player in history, a title she holds dear because of the partners she has worked with.

“It makes me very proud because I’ve done it along side people that I truly love and respect and admire and they make me better,” she said.

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Olympic Round Up August 17th


Written by USAToday Sports Staff at USAToday.com

In hot water

After a judge ordered they turn over their passports, Jack Conger and Gunnar Bentz, two American swimmers who were reportedly robbed Sunday morning along with Ryan Lochte, weredetained by Brazilian authorities for several hours as they attempted to leave the country.

Feigen, who was also involved, told USA TODAY Sports that he was safe but wanted to go home. “I’m just trying to give Brazil what they need or what they want and get out of here,” he said. Stateside, NBC reported that Lochte stuck to his story but tweaked several key details.

Meanwhile, reports swirled that a British swimmer was “held up at gunpoint” on Tuesday morning.

Bolt’s new foil

After Justin Gatlin surprisingly failed to advance past the men’s 200-meter semifinals, Usain Bolt may have found himself a new rival for his final individual race.

In Bolt’s semifinal run, he found himself challenged by 21-year-old Canadian Andre De Grasse, causing the Jamaican sprinting legend to look over, smile and push a little harder to win the heat.

De Grasse said it was all a part of his plan. “I wanted to make (Bolt) use as much energy as possible because I think I am going to do a better job of recovering than he is,” he said. “I am younger, so we will see what happens.”

Ladies’ night on the track

Things went awfully well for the U.S. women’s track and field team on Wednesday.

First, Tianna Bartoletta leaped 7.17 meters (23 feet, 6 1/4 inches) to win the women’s long jump, bumping fellow American and reigning champ Brittney Reese to silver.

Then, breakout star Tori Bowie took bronze in the 200 meters to become the first American runner with two medals in Rio.

Lastly came the big finale, an unprecedented show of dominance in the 100 hurdles. Brianna Rollins, Nia Ali and Kristi Castlin finished 1-2-3 to sweep the podium for the United States.

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Andy Murray Corrects Reporter At Olympics


Written by Mark Sweney at The Guardian.com

Andy Murray has put John Inverdale in his place for saying the Scot was the first person to win two Olympic golds for tennis, as the BBC presenter made the latest in a string of on-air gaffes.

Inverdale, interviewing Murray after he defeated Argentina’s Juan Martin Del Potro to claim his second Olympic gold, said: “You’re the first person ever to win two Olympic tennis gold medals. That’s an extraordinary feat, isn’t it?”

But the Scot shot back: “Well, to defend the singles title … I think Venus and Serena [Williams] have won about four each but hadn’t defended a singles title before.”

He added: “I mean it’s obviously not an easy thing to do. I had to fight unbelievably hard to get it tonight as well. Yeah, I’ll enjoy this one.”

Murray’s comment won praise on Twitter, including from Scottish first minister Nicola Sturgeon:

Murray said earlier this year he had become a feminist after witnessing first-hand the “criticism and prejudice” his former coach Amelie Mauresmo has endured.

The incident marked the end of a less than vintage weekend of presenting for Inverdale, who has also managed to get off-side with five-time Olympic medallist Sir Steve Redgrave, with whom he is co-presenting coverage of the rowing.

Tension has been brewing between the pair, with Redgrave walking off the set live on-air on Thursday after pulling a face at Inverdale.

The spat continued the following day when Redgrave appeared to deliberately shake a wet umbrella over Inverdale.

After the second incident the BBC moved to deny that Redgrave and Inverdale do not see eye-to-eye, saying that any suggestion that there is an issue between the pair is “simply untrue”.

However, over the weekend their relationship hit a new low with Redgrave interrupting Inverdale interviewing the gold medal winner in the single sculls, New Zealand’s Mahé Drysdale.

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Biles, Raisman, Get Gold and Silver in Floor Routine