Triangle athletes, coaches react as Tokyo Olympics postponed

RALEIGH, N.C. (WTVD) -- UPDATE: The Tokyo Olympics have been officially postponed. Read more here.

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World reacts to Olympics 2020 being postponed due to COVID-19



ORIGINAL STORY:

There is no official word from the International Olympic Committee yet, but the postponement of the 2020 Tokyo Summer Games seems a certainty at this point.

Longtime IOC member Dick Pound told USA Today that a postponement was definitely happening. An announcement is expected within four weeks.
Locally that news hardly came as a surprise to former US Olympic Track and Field head coach George Williams, a Shaw University legend.

FULL COVERAGE OF THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC

"They understand it's all about the athletes. No athletes, no Olympics and the athletes are frightened," Williams said.

Williams, who counts many IOC members as friends, thinks a 2021 Games are all but assured. He'd be stunned if they were canceled outright.

"They're going to do the right thing but I wish somebody would just make a solid and hard decision right now to say hey we're working on the logistics for 2021," he said. "Nothing this year, everybody back off, relax, try to keep yourself safe."

He also mentioned the complete inability of prospective Olympians to train. With college campuses everywhere shut down, they've been reduced to running on roads and fields. Williams coaches several Olympians himself and says any rushed games would be "watered down."
Former NC State national champ Nick Gwiazdowski, an Olympic wrestling hopeful, isn't letting the news get him down.

"I would just take it in stride," he said. "If I can't control it I can't control it. What am I going to do if I get mad and get frustrated about it?"

Just 27, "Gwiz's" Olympic window isn't close to closing. In fact, he says a 2021 Games could work in his favor

"Me at age 28 could be better than me at age 27," he said. "Better on the mats; I've kind of improved every year. Just a bit wiser and better."

Trials to make the US Olympic wrestling team were supposed to be next week. Obviously, with the pandemic, that long ago went out the window. Gwiazdowski has adjusted his training accordingly.
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