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Heavy medal: The weight of the Olympic prize is impressing Rio athletes

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The medals being given out at the Rio Games are the heaviest in Olympic history. In other words, wear with caution. At 17.6 ounces apiece – 1.1 pounds – it’s quite a bauble that’s getting dangled off the necks of some of the world’s top athletes. And some have been surprised about how that weight feels when presented with their Olympic prize. “I might start getting a neckache,” British trap shooter Edward Ling said Monday after winning bronze. “It’s rather…

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The Leo of archery? U.S. star Brady Ellison drawing comparisons to Leo DiCaprio

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U.S. Olympic archer Brady Ellison is not — repeat, is not — an Academy Award winner. Apparently, some people think he looks like one. The two-time Olympic silver medalist (including one from the team event during the opening weekend of these Rio Games) has been getting plenty of comparisons to Leonardo DiCaprio, mostly because some see facial resemblances. “I’ve had it told to me before, even when I was younger,” Ellison said. “I personally don’t see a huge resemblance, maybe…

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Going for gold isn’t just for athletes anymore

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The Olympic athletes aren’t the only ones going for the gold in Rio. For the first time since the 1998 Winter Games in Nagano, Japan, bettors in Las Vegas are allowed to wager legally on an Olympic competition. RJ Bell of Pregame.com says much of that money will be spent on men’s basketball even though bookmakers give the Americans an almost 90 percent change of winning the gold medal. So, you’d have to lay down $1,200 on the Americans to earn $100. A $100 wager…

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In Olympic marketing, smaller brands find restrictions tough

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The Olympics are full of stories of underdogs triumphing against the odds for athletic glory. But in the case of Olympic marketing, smaller brands are finding it tough to prevail amid strict rules. Sponsors such as Visa, Samsung and Coca-Cola pay hundreds of millions of dollars to be associated with the Olympics. So the International Olympic Committee cracks down on non-sponsoring brands that reference the Olympics by name or use Olympic logos in tweets or advertisement. This extends to athletes…

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US-Australia rivalry highlights 1st night in Olympic pool

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Katie Ledecky is going for a sweep of the longer freestyle races at the Olympics, a feat unmatched since another American teenager achieved it 48 years ago. Before she tries to equal Debbie Meyers‘ golden triple, Ledecky could join the U.S. 4×100-meter freestyle relay team when the eight-day swimming competition begins Saturday. If she wins her three individual events and a relay, the 19-year-old Ledecky would take four gold medals back to her Maryland home, equaling the record for a…

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The wonder of reporting through 10 Olympic Games

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It is a competition built on an ideal; thank goodness for it. It is peace, and it is honor, and it is integrity, mixed with interlocking rings and the sounds of national anthems. It is the world at play, and the world as it works. It is the Olympics, and still, it matters. I have covered 10 of these Games (six of them Summer Games), from Barcelona to Athens, from Sydney to Atlanta, from Beijing to London. And now, as…

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Remember Hubert Mizell and his impact

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The newspaper clippings — the fossils of a bygone era — were faded and yellow, the droppings of a more literate era. Most of them had long given way to film, and then to digital files. Only these remained. For some reason, they were in the desk I was cleaning out a couple of years ago after all of these years. Nice pieces. Average pieces. Memorable ones. Ones to get a writer through the day. I lingered on the print,…

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