Canada tennis schedule: How to watch every 2021 Olympic match from Tokyo
The road to gold begins Friday, July 23.It's been 21 years since Canada won its lone medal — a gold one — by the men's doubles team of Sébastien Lareau and Daniel Nestor. This year, Canada brings a strong contingent to the Summer Games that could see that number rise.
TOKYO (AP) — Will it be a success? A failure? Or none of the above?
It will take something much more nuanced than those basic notions to assess the pandemic-delayed Tokyo Olympics when they wrap up in two weeks. The response will be twisted by dozens of parties with their own interests.
There's the International Olympic Committee. The 11,000 athletes. The Japanese organizing committee. The Japanese public. The absent fans.
And how about the sponsors? Or the Japanese government and Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga. There is the Tokyo Metropolitan Government and Governor Yuriko Koike, who has higher political aspirations. The Tokyo medical community. And television rights holders like American television network NBC.
Tokyo Olympics Full TV & Streaming Schedule: How To Watch Everything, Including The Women’s Swimming & Woman’s Gymnastics Team Finals – Updated
UPDATED with schedule changes: NBCUniversal is airing programming from the Tokyo Olympic Games across a wide swath of its broadcast, cable and digital properties, the programming schedules for which are constantly shifting this year. Deadline is updating this list daily from multiple official sources. See schedule below for full event listings. NBCU’s Peacock streaming service launched a Tokyo Olympics destination on July 15 that features extensive live coverage of some the Games’ biggest events including Gymnastics, Track and Field and the U.S.’s pursuit of its fourth straight gold medal in Men’s basketball.
Just getting through it will be cast as a success by many. This may be the spin no matter what happens, particularly for the IOC, its broadcast partners and Japanese media. A half dozen newspapers in Japan are domestic sponsors and have a vested interest in portraying the Games positively.
The more the focus is on the sports — and off politics, costs, corruption and COVID-19 — the better it is for the Switzerland-based IOC.
Pushing on with the Olympics after the postponement — and during the pandemic — has hurt the IOC's reputation in Japan. Kaori Yamaguchi, a former bronze medalist and a member of the Japanese Olympic Committee, said a few months ago that she was shocked to find the IOC operated primarily as an “entertainment" business.
Olympic viewing guide: Why Simone Biles didn't 'quit', and Penny swims for another record
Here's what to watch Wednesday night and Thursday morning, including Penny Oleksiak's attempt to make more Canadian history and some context to help understand why Simone Biles isn't competing in the women's all-around final.Canada's two best medal chances on Day 6 are also in women's events. We'll get to those in a minute, along with some other interesting news you need to know.
The IOC generates almost 75% of its income from the sale of broadcast rights. Another 18% is from sponsors. Estimates suggest that canceling the Tokyo Olympics might have cost the IOC $3 billion to $4 billion. About 40% of the IOC's total income is from one source — NBC.
“The focus (now) is on the field of play, on the athletes where we always feel it should be,” Kit McConnell, the IOC's sports director, said Sunday after the first full day of competition.
The IOC also needs the focus to be off COVID-19. The Japanese public has been conditioned to expect some positive cases, and they are likely to accept this inevitability if all events are held and wrap up with medal ceremonies. Canceled events and unclaimed medals will be difficult to dismiss.
“If that happens, that would be a negative blow for the public, for the IOC, and everybody else,” Kazuto Suzuki, a political scientist at Tokyo University, told The Associated Press in an interview.
Tokyo Olympics Ratings Highs and Lows So Far – And How They Stack Up to 2016 Rio Games
After a year's delay due to the pandemic, the Tokyo Olympics got off to a rocky start on NBC last Friday with an opening ceremony that was down 35% in total viewers compared to the 2016 kickoff to the Rio de Janeiro Summer Games, an all-time low in viewership. One week later, we have six nights of Nielsen data that give a better idea of overall interest in NBC's Tokyo Olympics coverage. We also know which night took the gold and which didn'tOne week later, we have six nights of Nielsen data that give a better idea of overall interest in NBC's Tokyo Olympics coverage. We also know which night took the gold and which didn't even medal — and how they stack up to Rio's comparable evenings.
The biggest winner if the Olympics are portrayed positively will be Suga, whose ruling LDP party faces a general election this fall. Suga's approval ratings keep dropping, tied to Japan's slow rollout of vaccines and to his unpopular decision to barrel ahead with the Olympics despite opinion polls showing many Japanese opposed.
Suga's advantage is the ruling party's weak opposition. The LDP has ruled Japan almost continuously since the end of World War II.
“This is a very politically sensitive time, and Suga wants to use the Olympics as a stepping stone for his success in the election,” Suzuki said. “Japan’s success in the Olympics and winning gold medals, and the Japanese people cheering and rooting for the Japanese athletes. Those kind of things are working positively for Suga."
Suzuki said Suga also has an eye on not wanting to fail with these Olympics given that Japan's rival and neighbor, China, puts on its own show starting Feb. 4 with the Beijing Winter Games.
Video: IOC touts gender-balanced Games but criticized for not going far enough (cbc.ca)
Chasing Gold: Katie Ledecky leaves Tokyo with four medals, Team USA headed for podium in baseball
Ledecky may be done for this Olympics — she finished with four medals — but the 24-year-old plans on being back for Paris 2024.The 24-year-old completed a three-peat of the 800-meter freestyle when she won gold with a time of 8:12.57. It was her last race in Tokyo.
“They are afraid that China will be celebrated as the champion and global leader in this pandemic,” Suzuki said.
Seiko Hashimoto, the president of the organizing committee, has repeatedly said the Olympics will be successful if they are “safe and secure.” Pressed to elaborate, she has been unable to specify exactly what that means.
But it's difficult to see how the Olympics can be portrayed as a success for the average Japanese. Fans are barred from all but a few outlying venues, and they're being told to stay home and watch what is now an entirely made-for-TV Olympics.
Ditto for sponsors. More than 60 local sponsors kicked in more than $3 billion — at least two times more than any previous Games — to be connected to the Olympics. Toyota, Japan's most famous manufacturer and a longtime IOC sponsor, has pulled all its Olympic-related TV advertising from Japan during the Olympics. Many other sponsors have talked openly about not wanting to be tied to the Olympic brand.
The chaotic runup to the Olympics has also exposed corruption, misogyny and bullying in Japan, undermining success even before the Games began.
Tsunekazu Takeda, who led the Japanese Olympic Committee, resigned in a scandal 2 1/2 years ago tied to bribery allegations surrounding the IOC vote in 2013 to award the Games to Tokyo. Yoshiro Mori, a former prime minister, was forced out six months ago as the head of the organizing committee for making demeaning comments about women.
Olympic viewing guide: Andre De Grasse's best chance for gold?
Here's what to watch on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, featuring Andre De Grasse going for his fifth Olympic medal in a fascinating men's 200-metre final.In track cycling, Canada lost the bronze race in the women's team pursuit to the U.S.
And just last week, on the eve of the opening ceremony, its director resigned for comments about the Holocaust and a composer stepped away after acknowledging accusations of bullying. That came months after the creative director resigned for derogatory comments — again about women.
Barbara Holthus, a sociologist at the German Institute for Japanese Studies, said the embarrassments may raise awareness and prompt change in Japan, a largely homogenous, island nation that nevertheless named mixed-race Naomi Osaka to light the cauldron in Friday's opening ceremony.
Unfortunately for Osaka and the lift she might have given Japan, she lost Tuesday in the third round of the tennis tournament to French Open finalist Marketa Vondrousova 6-1, 6-4.
Osaka is wildly popular in Japan even though she barely speaks Japanese and has lived much of her life in the United States. She has a Japanese mother and a Haitian father but has given positive attention to the Olympics — even for those Japanese who oppose the Games.
“The Japanese economy and Japanese people are the big losers here,” Holthus said. “However, if these nods to sustainability, diversity and inclusion stick and bring about significant change, then that would be great for Japanese society. But this cannot be evaluated right after the Games and probably continues to be a slow process.”
She also criticized IOC President Thomas Bach for forcing through the Olympics, calling discussion of its message of hope “an elitist position.”
David Wallechinsky, one of the world's best-known Olympic historians, said these Games will be evaluated like all the rest — by the medal count.
“Every nation is going to judge it by how well their athletes did, just like any other Olympics,” Wallechinsky told the AP. “If the United States wins 50 gold medals — they won’t — nobody in the U.S. is going to talk about the pandemic. Because in the end, that’s what it’s all about — the medals."
Wallechinsky said just getting out of Tokyo in one piece will please the IOC. But there is more trouble ahead with the boycott-threatened Beijing Olympics.
“I think the IOC will just breathe a sigh of relief that it’s over," Wallechinsky said, “and then hold their breath again for Beijing.”
Stephen Wade, a sports writer for The Associated Press, has been covering the runup to the Olympics in Japan since 2018. He also covered the runup to the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics.
More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/2020-tokyo-olympics and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports
Stephen Wade, The Associated Press
Tokyo Olympics cost $15.4 billion. What else could that buy? .
TOKYO (AP) — The official price tag for the Tokyo Olympics in $15.4 billion, which a University of Oxford study says is the most expensive on record. What else could those billions buy? The ballpark figure for building a 300-bed hospital in Japan in $55 million. So you could put up almost 300 of these. The average elementary school in Japan costs about $13 million. For that price, you get 1,200 schools. A quick search finds a Boeing 747 is priced at roughly $400 million. Voila: 38 jumbo jets for the cost of the Tokyo Olympics. The point is, Olympic Games are costly and may bump aside other priorities.