Olympic Games preview at 125 Kg in Men’s Freestyle: Petriashvili, Akgul are Gold medalists that young U.S. star Steveson may battle

Since 2014, the heavyweight bracket has been won by either Geno Petriashvili of Georgia or Taha Akgul of Turkey. They will be on opposite sides of the bracket in Tokyo with Petriashvili holding the No. 1 seed and Akgul entering as the No. 3 seed.

Petriashvili is the three-time reigning World champion, winning gold in 2017, 2018, and 2019. He also picked up bronze medals at the 2013 and 2015 World Championships as well as a bronze in the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio. Additionally, he was a 2017 U23 World champion and 2013 Junior World champion.

Entering his third Olympic Games, Akgul is the returning Olympic champion with a gold-medal performance in Rio. It was his third-straight gold after winning World titles in 2014 and 2015. Since then, he earned silver medals at the 2017 and 2019 Worlds, falling to Petriashvili in tight bouts, 10-8 and 6-6, respectively. Akgul’s resume also includes a bronze from the 2013 World Championships.

In a good position to make some waves at the weight is Gable Steveson of the United States, who will compete at his first Olympics at just 21 years old. To make the U.S. Olympic Team, he dominated two-time Senior World bronze medalist Nick Gwiazdowski with back-to-back technical falls. While he hasn’t competed much at the Senior-level internationally, Steveson has some major international credentials at younger age-groups, including 2015 and 2016 Cadet World titles as well as a 2017 Junior World gold. At the Pan American Championships earlier this year, Steveson sailed through the field to win the bracket. Currently, Steveson wrestles at the University of Minnesota, where he won the 2021 NCAA title at heavyweight. He will enter the tournament unseeded, which is a problem for the rest of the field. Continue reading at teamusa.org →

Gable Steveson Set to Depart for Summer Olympics

The Minnesota heavyweight heading to Tokyo for a chance at Olympic gold

MINNEAPOLIS – University of Minnesota heavyweight and United States Olympic team member Gable Steveson is set to depart for the 2020 Summer Olympics this weekend, where he will compete in the 125-kilogram freestyle bracket in hopes of bringing home a gold medal.

Traveling alongside Gable will be University of Minnesota head coach Brandon Eggum and assistant coach Trevor Brandvold, who will act as Steveson’s personal coaches at the Olympic Games for Team USA.

The Apple Valley, Minn., native is the program’s first Olympian since Jake Deitchler at the 2008 Beijing Olympics and will be looking to earn the program’s first Olympic medal since 2000 when Garrett Lowney won a Greco-Roman bronze medal at 97kg in the Sydney Olympics.

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Olympic Wrestler Gable Steveson Will Only Do His Signature Move in Tokyo If 1 Thing Happens

Gable Steveson is known by many in the wrestling world not just for what he does during a competition, but also for what he does when he wins.

A backflip.

But fans of the now-Olympic wrestler shouldn’t expect to see him do it in Tokyo after just any victory.

“Should I gold medal match,” he told NBC Chicago. “I hope I get to that point. If I wrestle my best, I know I can get there. When and if I can win, put on a good show for America, that flip is coming.”

For Steveson, the dream of becoming an Olympian has already come faster than he ever anticipated, and he hopes to keep his streak going by winning a medal in Tokyo. Watch/continue reading at nbcchicago.com →

Gable Steveson: Going for the Olympic wrestling gold and beyond

The University of Minnesota wrestler talks about his plans for the Tokyo Summer Games, and everything that might come after.

MINNEAPOLIS — It’s 100 days to the Olympic Summer Games and Gable Steveson, a 20-year-old student at the University of Minnesota is preparing to make the trip to Tokyo, Japan. The 260-pounder will represent Team USA as part of the wrestling squad.

Steveson is all smiles sitting in his dorm room, thinking ahead to what it will mean representing his country at the games, saying “It’s crazy that I qualified for the Olympics and I’m going to Tokyo.”

There’s good reason the Junior from the U of M is pumped. He’s the reigning NCAA Division 1 National Champion, a two-time Big Ten Conference champion, two-time All-American and was honored as a top college wrestler. But for him, the Olympics is the ultimate dream come true, “Not many 20 year olds make the Olympic team,” he said. “I think I’m the third or second youngest ever to touch the team and especially in my weight class.”

On the verge of becoming wrestling royalty, you could say his journey started at birth. He’s named after Iowa wrestling legend Dan Gabel. His dad was a wrestler, both his brothers spent time on the mat and Gable was introduced to the sport at a very young age. View/continue reading at kare11.com →

Chasing medals must wait for Minnesota’s Olympic hopefuls

With the Tokyo Games now in 2021, local Olympic hopefuls reset dreams

Tori Dixon had begun to feel it was inevitable. With the sporting world essentially shut down by the coronavirus pandemic, and a rising chorus of voices pushing for the Tokyo Olympics to be postponed, the Burnsville native had started to accept the fact that her Summer Games dream might be deferred.

She was still holding out hope, though, when she woke up Tuesday morning.

“Then I saw my phone was blowing up,’’ said Dixon, a member of the U.S. women’s volleyball team and a former Gopher. “And I read the news.

“Everyone had a million questions, but I was still trying to process what was going on. It was like a bomb dropped, and you just had to pick up the pieces.” Continue reading at startribune.com