Top 5 Men’s Swimmers That Can Upset Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics 2021

Published 07/07/2021, 11:31 AM EDT
Jun 17, 2021; Omaha, Nebraska, USA; Caeleb Dressel reacts in the MenÕs 100m Freestyle Finals during the U.S. Olympic Team Trials Swimming competition at CHI Health Center Omaha. Mandatory Credit: Rob Schumacher-USA TODAY Sports


After a gap of 5 years, the Tokyo Olympics 2021 is all set to start on July 23rd. Despite postponing the event from last year because of the ongoing COVID-19, Tokyo is all set to welcome athletes from all over the world to kick-start, the world’s biggest sporting event.

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As usual, swimming is one of the most-watched events in the Olympics. With Michael Phelps retired, new swimmers are expected to take the center stage in Tokyo.

Despite the USA being dominant in the swimming events, there are some swimmers outside the States looking to shine on the grandest stage of them all.

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The latest edition of the Olympics will host a new set of talented swimmers looking to win medals for their country.

Adam Peaty back for Tokyo Olympics 2021

While Dressel is immaculate in freestyle, no other swimmer will come close to Adam Peaty in the breaststroke events. The boy from England will be the hands-down favorite for the 50 and 100-meter breaststroke events in Tokyo.

Having won the gold medal in Rio 2016, Peaty looks to claim another gold this time around. He is currently the world record holder for both the aforementioned events.

The 6-time European swimmer of the year looks to continue his legacy in the breaststroke event.

RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL – AUGUST 09: Caeleb Dressel of the United States looks on in the first Semifinal of the Men’s 100m Freestyle on Day 4 of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium on August 9, 2016 in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. (Photo by Adam Pretty/Getty Images)

While Peaty dominates the breaststroke events, fans have their odds booked on Gregorio Paltrinieri for the 800 and 1500-meter freestyle competitions.

Claiming the gold medal in Rio for the 1500-meter freestyle event, Paltrinieri loves to swim long distances. However, having contracted mononucleosis, there are doubts regarding his appearance for the event.

With Sun Yang facing a doping ban, the 1500-meter freestyle event would be an exciting watch, for the audience.

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The local boy of Japan

While the Japanese have a lot of athletes competing in the Olympics, the individual medley specialist Daiya Seto looks set to bring the gold medal home to Japan, once again.

Notably, Seto was the first Asian swimmer to win the gold for a medley event. The predictions are in favor of Daiya to dominate the event from start to finish.

JAKARTA, INDONESIA – AUGUST 19: Gold medallist Daiya Seto of Japan celebrate during the victory ceremony of the men’s 200m butterfly swimming event on day one of the Asian Games on August 19, 2018 in Jakarta, Indonesia. (Photo by Lintao Zhang/Getty Images)

In the meantime, the backstroke events are the most awaited event this time around, along with Caeleb Dressel’s freestyle events.

Olympic gold medallist, Ryan Murphy looks to claim the back-to-back gold medals for this event. However, he will know that he should get past a certain Russian swimmer at first.

Evgeny Rylov

After his bronze medal in Rio 2016, Rylov looks a man possessed as he hopes to win his first Olympic gold medal in Tokyo. His performances in the International swimming league were noteworthy and looks to dethrone Murphy in the backstroke events.

USA’s Ryan Murphy poses with his gold medal on the podium after he won the Men’s 100m Backstroke Final during the swimming event at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games at the Olympic Aquatics Stadium in Rio de Janeiro on August 8, 2016. / AFP / GABRIEL BOUYS (Photo credit should read GABRIEL BOUYS/AFP via Getty Images)

Kristof Milak

Last but not least is the Hungarian swimmer, Kristof Milak. Even though Dressel looks to win seven gold medals to equal Mark Spitz’s record, Milak will be his biggest threat.

The current world record holder of the 200-meter fly broke Phelps’s long-standing world record by setting a time of 1:50.73, during the 2019 World championships.

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By competing in the 100-meter butterfly event as well, Milak hopes to dampen Dressel’s hopes of a clean sweep in Tokyo.

The US national men’s swimming team comprises some of the best swimmers in the world. However, the swimmers mentioned above are more than capable of spoiling their party, once and for all.

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Jacob Gijy

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Jacob Gijy is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. Gijy finished his Masters in Counselling Psychology and worked in a hospital for 2 years before his passion for sports compelled him to find his way to sports journalism. A fan of the great Tim Duncan, he is always ready to pick up a debate with anyone who does not offer the centre the respect he deserves.

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