Michael Phelps Confirms the 2016 Olympics Will Be His Last, Says He Will Not Compete in 2020 Tokyo Games
Michael Phelps has confirmed that his last Olympic splash will take place in Rio de Janeiro after all: The gold medalist swimmer says he does not plan to compete in the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo, Japan, despite what his teammate Ryan Lochte has claimed.
The celebrated swimmer set the rumors straight following his silver win during the 100-meter butterfly race on Friday, August 13, USA Today reports.
"I will just clarify that Ryan doesn’t know what he is talking about," Phelps said. "I am not coming back in four years."
The Olympian, who has so far won a record-breaking 22 gold medals during his professional career, clarified, "I have two laps left in my career so I am happy and I’m excited and looking forward to tomorrow. I saw [what Ryan said] and I was like, 'Thanks Ryan, throw me back out there for another four years!' If he wants to come back it will be great."
Instead, he added that he looks forward to being a spectator at the Tokyo Olympics in four years.
"It will be fun [for me] to watch," he explained. "This sport will be fun over the next four years to see how it transitions. There are a lot of young kids and they show how much talent they have here."
Phelps' final Olympic race will take place Saturday, August 13, during the 4x100-meter medley relay.
Good luck, Michael! And if you don't take home the gold again, don't worry — you're already the meme MVP of the 2016 Olympics.