PHOENIX, Arizona, May 17. MICHAEL Phelps has made his comeback official, and it only makes us pine for the return of other popular swimmers as we get ever closer to the Rio Olympic Games. Though there are probably a dozen people who have recently retired we would like to see back in the pool, we gave you just four choices in our most recent poll.
Courtesy of: Peter H. Bick
Courtesy of: Peter H. Bick
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Leading the way was Canadian Olympian Brent Hayden with 46.36 percent of votes. Hayden was the bronze medalist in the 100 free at the 2012 Olympics, capping off a career that included medals in all the major international competitions. After we announced the poll on Twitter last week, Hayden chimed in with his thoughts about making a comeback, telling us on Twitter that "I'm not saying I'm coming out of retirement, but I'm not saying I won't either... All I can say is I'm thinking about it." That's enough to get us excited.
Taking second in the poll was Rebecca Soni, the reigning Olympic champion in the 200 breast and former world record holder, with 33.11 percent. Ricky Berens, who had been a part of the American 800 free relay since 2008, was third in our poll with 13.25 percent. Of our four choices, Berens' retirement was the most surprising. Just three months after winning gold in the 800 free relay at the world championships last year, Berens hung up the suit. Rounding out the voting with 7.28 was Great Britain's Rebecca Adlington, who was the world record holder in the 800 free for five years, and the 2008 gold medalist in the 400 and 800 freestyles. She wrapped up her career in front of a home crowd at the London Olympics, winning two bronze medals.
As we've seen from Michael Phelps, never say never, and we'll see if these four or anyone else decides for one more go at glory in the pool.
Now, let's move on to our new poll question. Ryan Lochte withdrew from the Arena Grand Prix meet in Charlotte, as his knee injury was too severe to risk more stress from racing. We're less than three months from the USA Swimming nationals, where teams for this summer's Pan Pacific championships and next year's world championships will be chosen. Lochte will need to be at his best for that meet, and we wanted to know how you feel Lochte's injury will affect him at nationals. You have three choices. The first one is: he will not swim. Second, he will swim. Third, he will swim, but only in a few events if he is not at 100 percent. Our poll is located on the right side of our home page at swimmingworld.com, so go there and place your vote. We'll bring you the results on our next show.