The Latest on the Olympics ahead of the Rio Games (all times local to Rio):
Michael Phelps and Ryan Lochte have set up their only showdown of the U.S. Olympic swimming trials.
The longtime rivals cruised through the semifinals of the 200-meter individual medley Thursday night, each winning their heats in dominating fashion.
Lochte was the top qualifier at 1 minute, 56.71 seconds, while Phelps took the second spot in 1:57.61. That means they’ll be right beside each other for Friday night’s final, just as they’ve been so many times during their dazzling careers.
Phelps has already qualified for the Olympics in the 200 butterfly, giving him a chance to add to his record haul of 18 golds and 22 medals overall.
Lochte, an 11-time medalist, has yet to claim an individual event while battling a groin injury. Still in a lot of pain, he has adjusted his breaststroke just a bit and seems much more comfortable than he did in previous events.
Nathan Adrian will get a chance to defend his Olympic title in the 100-meter freestyle.
The 27-year-old Adrian used a powerful finishing kick to post a winning time of 47.72 seconds at the U.S. swimming trials Thursday night. That’s not far off the time of 47.52 that gave him the gold medal in London four years ago.
Caeleb Dressel will also swim the 100 free at Rio, taking second place behind Adrian in 48.23. Thirty-five-year-old Anthony Ervin, the oldest swimmer at the trials, got off to a blistering start but couldn’t hold on. He touched fourth in 48.54, also finishing behind Ryan Held (48.26).
But Ervin assured himself of a third trip to the Olympics, locking up a spot on the 4×100 free relay team along with the rest of the top four. The next two — Jimmy Feigen (48.57) and Blake Pieroni (48.78) — are also likely to be part of the team as possible relay swimmers.
After initially being disqualified during the preliminaries, Cammile Adams is heading to the Olympics for the second time.
The 24-year-old Texas native won the 200-meter butterfly at the U.S. swimming trials Thursday night, touching in 2 minutes, 6.80 seconds. Hali Flickinger took the second spot on the Olympic team in 2:07.50.
Adams was disqualified for an illegal turn after posting the fastest time in the preliminaries. That decision was quickly overturned after officials looked at a replay provided by the underwater camera.
Adams will now head to the Olympics as a medal favorite, having captured a silver at last year’s world championships. She was fifth in the same event at the London Games four years ago.
QUALIFICATION ALERT: Nathan Adrian has qualified for the Rio Olympics in the 100-meter freestyle.
QUALIFICATION ALERT: Cammile Adams has qualified for the Rio Olympics in the 200-meter butterfly.
Missy Franklin has missed out on another event that was part of her Olympic program four years ago.
Franklin was only the 11th-fastest qualifier in the semifinals of the 100-meter freestyle at the U.S. swimming trials Thursday night, missing a spot in Friday’s final. Abbey Weitzeil was the top qualifier at 53.57 seconds, and Katie Ledecky also advanced as the seventh seed at 54.04.
The top eight will swim in the final.
Also advancing were Simone Manuel (53.64), Amanda Weir (53.72), Dana Vollmer (53.74), Lia Neal (53.87), Kelsi Worrell (54.00) and Allison Schmitt (54.07).
Franklin could only produce a time of 54.24, while Natalie Coughlin’s Olympic hopes likely ended altogether.
The 12-time Olympic medalist struggled to a 14th-place showing in 54.87.
In 2012, Franklin finished fifth at the Olympics in the 100 free, one of seven events on her grueling program. So far, she’s qualified in only one individual event, the 200 freestyle.
Josh Prenot has knocked off Kevin Cordes in the 200-meter breaststroke at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials, sending another rookie to the Rio Games.
Cordes won the 100 breast to earn a trip to the Olympics, and he was heavily favored going into the longer event. Cordes took it out fast, putting him more than a second under the world-record pace at the final turn.
But the 22-year-old Prenot was much stronger on the closing lap, bouncing up and down furiously in the water to surge past Cordes. The Californian touched in 2 minute, 7.17 seconds — the fastest time of the year and just off the world mark of 2:07.01 set by Japan’s Ahkiro Yamaguchi in 2012.
Cordes barely held on for second, giving him a second individual event at the Olympics. He touched in 2:08.00 — just 14-hundredths of a second ahead of Will Licon.
Prenot’s victory means up to 21 first-time Olympic swimmers will be on the U.S. team in Rio.
QUALIFICATION ALERT: Josh Prenot has qualified for the Rio Olympics in the 200-meter breaststroke.
Sprinter Carmelita Jeter will miss the Olympic Trials after re-aggravating an injury to her left quadriceps.
Jeter, who won silver in the 100 and bronze in the 200 at the 2012 London Olympics, made the announcement Thursday on Instagram. The 36-year-old addressed her fans and said it’s been a rough two years that’s included two torn quadriceps along with surgery.
She also told them not to forget she’s still “the fastest woman alive.”
The U.S. Olympic roster stands at 299, with more than 200 more athletes still to be named.
Alan Ashley, chief of sport performance for the U.S. Olympic Committee, says that as of Thursday afternoon, one short of 300 Americans had punched their tickets to Rio de Janeiro.
He expects a team of 552 when all the qualifying is complete by mid-July.
Swimming trials are in full swing in Omaha, Nebraska, this week, while the track and field trials ramp up Friday in Eugene, Oregon.
Ashley wouldn’t venture any guesses on how many medals those 550-plus athletes will bring home from Brazil.
At the last Summer Games, Americans led the way with 103.
Maria Michta-Coffey and Miranda Melville have earned spots on the Olympic team in the 20-kilometer race walk at U.S. Olympic trials.
They finished 1-2 in the race, held in Salem, Oregon, and were the only two who have met the Olympic qualifying standard.
John Nunn won the men’s race, but doesn’t have the standard. Nunn had previously qualified for the 50-kilometer race. Rio will mark his third Olympics
Happy birthday, Michael Phelps.
Phelps marked his 31st birthday at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials Thursday by posting the second-fastest time in morning preliminaries of the 200-meter individual medley.
The most decorated athlete in Olympic history says he definitely feels older. He says his muscles “aren’t the same” and he’s in a lot of pain after winning the 200 butterfly the previous night.
Asked how he plans to celebrate his birthday, Phelps replied, “I’m not.”
Nick Symmonds, the 800-meter runner who also serves as a major voice for athlete’s rights in track, will not compete at Olympic Trials because of a left ankle injury.
He posted the announcement on Instagram, saying he has a torn ligament and a stress fracture. The 32-year-old runner said he is not retiring, but his 2016 season is over.
Symmonds boycotted the world championships last year to protest what he called unfair restrictions on what apparel athletes were allowed to wear.
He will still be at the stadium this week in Eugene, Oregon, promoting his Run Gum company and his cause. He’s hoping thousands of fans and dozens of athletes will wear black tape on their skin as a sign of protest over restrictions placed on which sponsor logos athletes are allowed to display during major events.
Ryan Lochte qualified fastest for the 200-meter individual medley semifinals at the U.S. Olympic trials, with Michael Phelps in second.
Lochte was timed in 1 minute, 58.05 seconds in the preliminary heats. He emerged from the pool limping as a result of the groin injury that has compromised his swimming since the trials began last Sunday.
Phelps finished second in 1:58.95, advancing to the evening semifinals on his 31st birthday. Four years ago in London, Phelps won gold and Lochte took silver. Lochte won the 200 IM at last year’s world championships in Russia, where Phelps couldn’t compete while serving a suspension from USA Swimming after his second drunken driving arrest.
Phelps’ 7-week-old son, Boomer, was on the lap of his mother Nicole Johnson during the race with Phelps’ mother Debbie sitting next to them.
Also making the semifinals was Austin Surhoff, the son of former major league baseball player B.J. Surhoff.
Micah Lawrence has topped the 200-meter breaststroke qualifying at the U.S. swimming trials.
She was fastest in the morning heats with a time of 2 minutes, 26.27 seconds in a bid to make her second Olympic team. Four years ago in London, Lawrence finished sixth in the event.
Also advancing to the evening semifinals is Lilly King, who is already on the U.S. team, and Breeja Larson, sixth in the 100 breast in London.
NBC says it will provide 85 hours of virtual reality programming during the Rio Olympics in August, available only to users of Samsung Galaxy smartphones and the Samsung Gear VR headset.
It’s the first time Olympics programming will be available in virtual reality.
The Olympics video, which will be presented on delay during the games, will include opening and closing ceremonies, men’s basketball, gymnastics and track events. Other virtualized sports will include beach volleyball, diving, boxing and fencing.
NBC Olympics president Gary Zenkel says the Rio Games will provide a showcase for the “cutting-edge” technology. Viewers also will need the NBC Sports app.
Matt Grevers may have competed in the last race of his career.
The six-time Olympic medalist qualified for the semifinals of the 200-meter backstroke at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials Thursday, but he knows he’s got no chance of actually making the team in that event.
Grevers is considering whether to scratch from the evening session, which would likely mark the end of his storied career even though he’s also entered in the 50 freestyle.
Grevers won four golds and six medals overall at the last two Olympics. The 31-year-old was hoping to make the team one more time, but he finished third — about a half-second out of a spot for Rio — in the 100 back.
That was the race he won at the 2012 London Games.
Grevers says he’s proud of his career and appreciative of all the support he’s received since his loss in the 100 back. He’s also about to become a father for the first time.
World champion Vivian Cheruiyot has qualified for the Olympics by winning the 10,000 meters at Kenya’s track and field trials.
Sally Kipyego, the silver medalist at the 2012 Olympics, was the first big name to miss out on the opening day of the trials after finishing sixth in the 10,000 final.
Betsy Saina qualified after finishing second and Alice Aprot earned a wild-card place.
World silver medalist Caleb Ndiku is looking forward to another shot at Olympic and world champion Mo Farah in Rio after winning the men’s 5,000 meters.
World-record holder and Olympic champion David Rudisha won his 800 meters semifinal in his best time of the year.
Jacob Pebley has qualified with the fastest time in the 200-meter backstroke at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials.
His time of 1 minute, 56.29 seconds led 16 men into the evening semifinals on Day 5 of the eight-day meet.
Defending Olympic champion Tyler Clary was second fastest in 1:56.85.
Also advancing were 100 back trials winner Ryan Murphy and Matt Grevers, whose third-place finish in the 100 back cost him a chance to defend his gold medal in Rio.
Coming up later in the preliminary session is Michael Phelps, who turns 31 on Thursday.
Abbey Weitzeil is the top qualifier for the 100-meter freestyle at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials.
The 19-year-old sprinter based in California was timed in 53.58 seconds in Thursday’s preliminaries. Amanda Weir, a 30-year-old former Olympian, was second fastest in 53.76.
Among others advancing to the 16-woman evening semifinals is Dana Vollmer, Simone Manuel, Kelsi Worrell, Katie Ledecky, Lia Neal, Missy Franklin, Olivia Smoliga, Natalie Coughlin, and Allison Schmitt.
Olympic gold medalist Nicola Adams will headline Britain’s largest Olympic boxing squad in 32 years at the Rio Games.
Britain, the third-most successful country in Olympic boxing, will have a 12-strong squad in Brazil — 10 men and two women.
Adams, who won gold in the flyweight category in London in 2012, will look to become Britain’s first two-time Olympic boxing champion.
Mark England, Britain’s chef de mission, says it “demonstrates the strength this sport and our boxing program can boast across the weight divisions.”
Britain has won 53 medals in boxing at the Olympic Games — 17 gold, 12 silver and 24 bronze.
Former No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki has won her appeal for a tennis spot in the Rio Olympics, while 14-time major champion Rafael Nadal’s status is still up in the air.
The International Tennis Federation released a provisional entry list for Rio on Thursday, and 2008 gold medalist Nadal’s participation is contingent on either making himself available for Spain’s Davis Cup matches in July or an ITF Olympic Committee appeal.
Wozniacki already has been picked as Denmark’s flag-bearer for the Olympics. She appealed for a berth in the event, saying injuries prevented her from meeting the Fed Cup requirements.
The top three men’s players in the world — Novak Djokovic of Serbia, 2012 gold medalist Andy Murray of Britain, and Roger Federer of Switzerland — are all in the field for Rio, where tennis begins Aug. 6.
The U.S. tennis team is led by past gold medalists Serena and Venus Williams. The American men on the provisional list include 589th-ranked Brian Baker.
Kanak Jha is having quite a year. He spent nine months playing professional table tennis in Europe, threw out the first pitch at a New York Mets game on his birthday and qualified for the Rio Olympics.
And the kid from California is only 16.
U.S. Olympic coach Massimo Costantini says Jha has “a good fighting spirit.” Players need “a strong mental balance,” especially when competing against the Chinese, who dominate the sport in the Olympics.
Since 1988, China has won 47 medals, followed by South Korea (18) and Germany (5). The U.S. has never won a medal.
Olympic teammate Jennifer Wu moved from Beijing to New York eight years ago and became an American citizen. Wu says “table tennis in China is like the NBA here, everybody plays.”
Michael Phelps will see several new faces on the U.S. team at the Rio Games. Phelps was just 15 when he made the first of his five Olympic teams in 2000. Now he’s 31 and getting ready to hang up his suit after Rio.
David Plummer made the Olympic team on his third try. The 30-year-old from Oklahoma City recently finished second in the 100 backstroke at the U.S. swimming trials to qualify. Like Phelps, he’s the father of a baby boy.
Among the Olympic hopefuls are Lilly King and Olivia Smogliga. The 19-year-old King broke the American record in the 100- and 200-yard breaststrokes while winning a pair of NCAA titles for Indiana in March.
Smogliga is one of the taller female athletes at 6-foot-2. She won NCAA titles in the 50 and 100 freestyles for Georgia. Her biggest previous international competition was the 2015 Pan Am Games, where she qualified to swim the 100 back in Rio by finishing second.
Kacey Oberlander is missing her dogs back home, and she’s more than a little stressed competing in the high-pressure environment at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials in Omaha, Nebraska.
That’s where Holly comes in. The adorable, 4-year-old Havanese is available for petting and furry hugs. Yep, these Olympic trials have gone to the dogs — and the athletes are loving it.
USA Swimming, in an effort to ease some of the anxiety accompanying such a major meet, has partnered with Domesti-PUPS — a nonprofit organization based in Lincoln, Nebraska. It’s providing the four-legged companions for the athletes’ lounge.
Oberlander says its calms her down “to see the happy puppy dogs running around when everything is so intense and everyone’s so serious.”
Oberlander swims for York YMCA in Pennsylvania and will attend Alabama in the fall.
Double shooting gold medalist Michael Diamond has been ruled ineligible to represent Australia at the Rio Olympics.
Diamond was charged by police last month with drunk driving and firearms offenses, which he denies. But he’d not due in court again until July 25, which is past the Australian Olympic Committee’s deadline of July 4 for selection.
The 44-year-old Diamond appeared before the AOC’s executive committee Thursday to argue his case for selection. The committee later upheld Shooting Australia’s decision not to nominate Diamond for selection in trap shooting.
Possible new slogan for the U.S. Olympic track team: Higher, Faster, Younger.
There could be a youth movement underway on the track over the next two weeks.
A group of up-and-comers are angling for spots on America’s Olympic track team, hoping to duplicate the success a new crop of swimmers is making at that sport’s trials in Omaha, Nebraska.
That includes 17-year-old sprinter Candace Hill, longshot possibility to make the U.S. squad for the Rio Olympics in the 100 meters, 200 meters or perhaps even both.
Hill is already the world’s fastest girl ever, courtesy of a number of youth records she set last season, including in the 200, which she ran in 22.43 seconds.