5-Ring Circus

THE BIG PICTURE: After being sued, FINA announces new meet series

In the blowback from the twin lawsuits filed against it for restraint of trade in the U.S., the International Federation for swimming, FINA, suddenly announced this: “[A] new and additional swimming event format, to debut in 2019: the ‘FINA Champions Swim Series.’ It will consist of a three-leg competition, between March and May, aimed at […]
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LANE ONE: Larry Nassar preyed on young girls; why is gymnastics focused that...

Larry Nassar has been convicted of crimes that will keep him in jail for the rest of his life. He sexually abused hundreds of young, female gymnasts who trusted him to provide medical care. As horrible as his actions were, they are hardly the end of the tragedy. In fact, it’s still going on. The […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: IOC’s bad pun in its commitment to sustainability release underlines...

The International Olympic Committee came out with a emotionally-worded statement entitled “IOC Takes Leadership Role in the UN Sports for Climate Action Initiative,” supporting the United Nations Climate Change Summit in Poland. The first paragraph included this: “The Initiative was launched today by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), in partnership with […]
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LANE ONE: The Nassar sex-abuse scandal: What actually happened (and didn’t happen)?

The long-awaited report on the Larry Nassar sex-abuse scandal in gymnastics from the Boston-based Ropes & Gray law firm was made public on Monday (10th) and did not disappoint with a heavily-detailed, 252-page report that filled in many of the blanks on what happened, when and why. What did happen? Entitled “Report of the Independent […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: Olympic Summit reveals IOC policy on eSports

The International Olympic Committee convened its seventh Olympic Summit over the weekend, including representatives of most of the stakeholders in the Olympic Movement. A lot of attention was paid to the comments made about electronic sports (eSports) and the meeting summary gave a lot of space to this aspect of the discussions. The main points […]
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LANE ONE: USOC’s reformation attempt with gymnastics is only its latest NGB adventure

The move by the United States Olympic Committee to institute revocation of recognition proceedings against USA Gymnastics drew headlines in the wake of the Larry Nassar sex-abuse scandal. But it’s hardly the first instance of the USOC getting involved – and in some cases, actually running – a national governing body. In fact, since the […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: Breaststroke champ Adam Peaty rips FINA over lack of athlete...

The furor among some of the top swimmers in the world over FINA’s forced cancellation of the International Swimming League-affiliated Energy for Swim meet, scheduled to be held in Turin (ITA), after next week’s FINA World Short-Course Championships, has not subsided. Britain’s Adam Peaty, the Olympic gold medalist in the 100 m Breaststroke and a […]
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LANE ONE: USA Gymnastics to USOC: “We’re not dead yet”

You have to give credit to the USA Gymnastics Board of Directors. They aren’t giving up and they are not about to roll over for the convenience of the United States Olympic Committee. That stance may or may not matter in the end, but Wednesday’s unexpected announcement that USA Gymnastics had filed for protection under […]
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DOPING: Russian NOC appeals Moscow decision to ignore Zubkov’s Sochi doping

In a move dripping with political calculations, the Russian National Olympic Committee appealed the decision of the Moscow City Court that invalidated the doping...

THE BIG PICTURE: IAAF Council maintains its suspension of Russia, as outstanding issues...

The International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) maintained its stance on the status of the Russian Athletic Federation (RusAF) at its Council meeting in Monaco on Tuesday: Russia is still on suspension. The IAAF statement noted that there are two remaining conditions and both must be fulfilled: ● “The [Athletics Integrity Unit] must confirm that […]
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LANE ONE: Walking in parallel, the IOC and USOC are reworking their power...

Perhaps not unexpectedly, the International Olympic Committee and the United States Olympic Committee are walking, side-by-side, down a parallel road of de-certification of a sports governing body. What they do – and just as importantly – how they do it will re-shape the relationship between the IOC and the International Sports Federations and the USOC […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: Battle of the budget continues in Tokyo for 2020

The battle of the budget continues at the 2020 Tokyo Games, where a new version of the total financial requirements is due at the end of the year. During the Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC) meetings in Tokyo (JPN), Tokyo 2020 CEO/Director General Toshiro Muto told reporters that pressure continues to be placed on […]
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LANE ONE: The IOC punches AIBA, is WADA being played for a dope...

Quite a weekend of action off the fields of play, with major developments in the ongoing saga of boxing and the Olympic Games, doping in Russia and the USA Track & Field election for a nominee for the IAAF Council: ∙ The IOC wants to hurt AIBA, but not boxers The International Olympic Committee’s Executive […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: ANOC resolves its presidential dilemma, at the request of Sheikh...

The drama over the withdrawal of Kuwait’s Sheikh Ahmad Al-Fahad Al-Sabah from his duties as the head of the Association of National Olympic Committees was settled – for now – on Wednesday. The ANOC General Assembly, meeting in Tokyo, approved the postponement of its election for President, with Sheikh Ahmad the only candidate. Until the […]
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LANE ONE: LA2028’s first presentation: “What are you going to do for the...

Sometimes it’s best to just listen. At the Association of National Olympic Committee’s General Assembly ongoing in Tokyo (JPN), the Chair of the Los Angeles 2028 organizing committee, Casey Wasserman, gave the first presentation to the Olympic Movement since the event was awarded last year. He spoke for just more than 10 minutes, accompanied by […]
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LANE ONE: Who’s the best? The IAAF is down to its top five...

Apart from the doping, politics, suspensions and court cases, there was some pretty good sport taking place in 2018. The awards are starting to be announced and one of the best of the year-end awards programs is the Athlete of the Year awards in track & field, presented annually in a big gala in Monaco, […]
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ATHLETICS: Kenya’s Kipyegon Bett suspended for doping

The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has been busy, posting notices of suspensions, especially for Kenyan 800 m star Kipyegon Bett. The 2017 World Championships bronze medalist, with a best of 1:43.76 (from 2016), the 20-year-old Bett was guilty of two different violations. He did not appear for an out-of-competition test in February and then use […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: More pressure on the U.S. Olympic Committee in the Larry...

While most of the focus in the Larry Nassar sex-abuse scandal has been on his employer, Michigan State University, and USA Gymnastics, where he served as the national team physician, the United States Olympic Committee has been a major part of the discussion. While the USOC’s new chief executive, Sarah Hirshland, has begun the process […]
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LANE ONE: Equestrian’s answer to a Games in distress: Bigger isn’t better

You don’t usually find much equestrian coverage in The Sports Examiner. Its regional or worldwide international competitions are limited in view of the costs of moving horses and people around, and it is a fourth-tier sport in terms of impact and viewership in the Olympic Games. But the manner in which the sport’s international federation […]
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THE BIG PICTURE: Process to de-certify USA Gymnastics will take time

When U.S. Olympic Committee chief executive Sarah Hirshland began the process of de-certification of USA Gymnastics as the National Governing Body for the sport, she noted the possibility of that organization relinquishing its status voluntarily. Well, that didn’t happen and in a letter released on Wednesday, Hirshland wrote: “We received USAG’s response to our complaint […]
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