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MICHAEL PHELPS

Aug. 25, 2014
Aug. 25, 2014

Table of Contents
Aug. 25, 2014

INBOX
TENNIS
  • AS THE WORLD'S TOP PLAYER PREPARES TO DEFEND HER U.S. OPEN TITLE, THE TENNIS WORLD WONDERS IF HER WIMBLEDON MELTDOWN WAS A SIGN OF HER FINAL FADE. OR IS A LITTLE CONTROVERSY EXACTLY WHAT THIS FEROCIOUS COMPETITOR NEEDS TO KEEP GOING?

BASEBALL
Kobe Bryant
LONGFORM
POINT AFTER
Departments

MICHAEL PHELPS

THINGS HAVE CHANGED for Michael Phelps, who returned to competition in April after 20 months of retirement. At the U.S. Swimming National Championships in Irvine, Calif., last week, the 18-time Olympic champion qualified for the team that will compete at the Pan-Pacific Championships in Australia later this month. But for the first time since 2000, Phelps left nationals without winning a race. "The biggest difference I notice is the time it takes him to recover," says his coach, Bob Bowman. "He can be good on a Tuesday or Thursday, but he can't be good on every day of the week." Now 29, Phelps has made numerous adjustments since he won his first Olympic medal in 2004.

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, but he's doing this because he wants to and he's smiling when he comes to practice. At this point in his life he wouldn't be doing this otherwise."

51.17

Phelps's time in a 100-meter butterfly prelim at the U.S. championships, best in the world this year.

51.21

Phelps's time in his gold-winning 100 butterfly swim at the 2012 Olympics.

PHOTOSIMON BRUTY/SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (PHELPS)PHOTOPATRICK SEMANSKY/AP (PHELPS'S BACK)PHOTOGETTY IMAGES (BARBELL)PHOTOMARK WEISS/GETTY IMAGES (STEAK)PHOTOPETER READ MILLER/SPORTS ILLUSTRATED (PHELPS IN WATER)PHOTOMANNY FLORES/CSM (PHELPS'S SHOULDER)PHOTOFLOREA MARIUS CATALIN/VETTA/GETTY IMAGES (GREENS)