Chad Le Clos: “Phelps Can Keep Quiet Now”

Not even 24 hours have passed since American swimming icon Michael Phelps threw down the world’s fastest 200m butterfly time in San Antonio that the worldwide trash talking has begun.

Phelps crushed at time of 1:52.94 to take the 200m butterfly title at U.S. Nationals, silencing any skeptics who thought the man was past his prime.  But, rivals took to the mic to express their thoughts on the 18-time Olympic gold medalist’s performance.

Said Hungarian Laszlo Cseh when asked about Phelps’ #1 time in the world, “”It doesn’t [matter] because I won the world champs.”

South African Chad Le Clos also had some choice words after his own gold medal-winning 100m butterfly performance today at the World Championships. When asked about Phelps’ post-race, Le Clos offered up, Michael Phelps has been talking about how slow the butterfly events have been recently. I just did a time he hasn’t done in four years. So he can keep quiet now.”  Le Clos may be particularly sensitive Phelps’ in-pool response, seeing how the American’s 1:52.96 was .02 better that the time Le Clos registered to beat Phelps in the event at the 2012 London Olympic Games.

For his part, Le Clos raced to a new South African and African 100m fly record of 50.56 in Kazan today and actually logged the second-fastest textile swim ever in the event.  In comparison, Phelps’ best 100m fly textile time is 50.65 from 2010.

We’ve seen in the past how competitors’ comments only up Phelps’ game and fuel his already evident “I absolutely hate to lose” racing spark.

After last night’s special swim, Phelps said, “It just shows you that anything is possible if you do want something bad enough. I went through a lot. And to be able to train like I did to get ready for this — I mean, I can do whatever I put my mind to. And this next year is going to be pretty damn fun.”

Phelps will contest the 100m butterfly race tonight in San Antonio, where he goes into the final as the second seed (52.12).

In This Story

Comments

  1. Bossanova says:

    Those who do not learn from Cavic’s past are doomed to repeat it.

  2. Swedish Fish says:

    Giving Phelps even more motivation for the upcoming year really seems like a bad idea.

    • Competitive Trash Talker says:

      These statements are GREAT for our sport. GREAT for the upcoming races in Rio and GREAT for motivating these swimmers to go even faster the next time they hit the water. It gets people who haven’t paid any attention to swimming since the London Olympics to perk up their ears and start paying attention. I love it!

  3. pol says:

    LOL some of these pretenders. We’ll see in Rio who will get the last laugh.

  4. Alec says:

    Tonight will be very interesting with Phelps and Conger. With Phelps hoping to go faster than Le Clos and Conger hoping to go faster than Schooling it should be interesting.

  5. Paswim says:

    If you come at the king, you best not miss.

  6. Jack says:

    I’m calling it right now: Phelps is going sub-50.40 tonight.

  7. Bryan says:

    “you have f*cked up now. Now you have f*cked up”

  8. Lane Four says:

    What the heck? Both Laszlo and Le Clos making some pretty harsh statements – especially Le Clos. The statements were almost so unbelievable I truly thought SwimSwam was pulling a fast one on the fans and readers. If these statements are real, they just started poking the tiger with a stick and the ending won’t be a pretty one. If I wasn’t 100% behind Michael before this, I most certainly am now.

    • Lazy Observer says:

      To be clear, Cseh’s comment wasn’t harsh. If anything, it was restrained. Imagine winning a world championship in a world-beating time and the question someone asks you is, “Did you hear about that other guy who can go faster?” I mean, did anyone say to the US team just now, “How does it feel winning this while Australia sat it out?”

      • Lane Four says:

        Sometimes it is hard to interpret what someone said when you are reading it rather than hearing it. I still think that the statements were a bit harsh, but in the end it really is nothing more than food for the build up to Rio. I would consider the two fly events the most anticipated on the schedule now. Michael isn’t going to say anything (that we will ever hear). I apologize, but I don’t understand what you were trying to say about the Aussie relay and how it equates to Chad, Laszlo and Michael.

        • Lazy Observer says:

          Australia arguably would have been strong contenders for gold in the mixed relay, but they sat it out. My point is that no one is shaming the US team for winning in their absence. Or Lochte for winning in the absence of Phelps and Hagino. Etc. Etc. Maybe on comment boards, but certainly not to their faces.

      • Lane Four says:

        After reading what others have said about Laszlo’s statement, I retract my saying it was harsh. I love the guy and think the world of him. With Chad, I won’t. That was harsh towards Michael. Maybe we can call it just being young.

        • sven says:

          I don’t know, when you’re one of the best butterfliers in the world and someone says in an interview “yeah butterfly really hasn’t been that impressive lately” I think you’re allowed to take offense. That’s your craft, and someone else is putting down your work. So when you have a stellar race like that, I think you’ve earned the right to fire back.

          And besides, the sport needs more smack talk.

          • anonymus says:

            the thing is phelps said that prior to worlds and until now the butterfly times have been rather slow indeed. best times in the 200m fly for example have been constantly 1.54 mid to 1.55 low until now and nobody diped under 51 in the 100 either. so i dont think phelps statement was meant to provoke or downplay anything in the first place and at the time he made it he was absolutely right.. image you would go a 1.54 in 2001 and 12-13 years later nobody is remarkably faster than that.. i think that makes it comprehensible

            And btw nobody needs smack talking and i personally rather avoid sports with a lot of smack talking like boxing and this stuff.. it makes it seem so poor and banal and its definitely not a characteristic of true champions in general, they speak through their actions and accomplishments not their chhitchat. but thats just my opinion

          • sven says:

            I’m not arguing intent here, and I’m not saying the times haven’t plateaued somewhat. I’m saying that I don’t blame Le Clos for taking it personally. After all, if I was an elite flyer and I heard Phelps say that he hasn’t trained for the 200 fly since Beijing, and then say that the event has stagnated as though I hadn’t been working hard enough, I’d be pretty annoyed too.

        • Coach Mike 1952 says:

          and ignorant – did he not see what happened in 2009 with Phelps-Cavic?

          • david says:

            Believe me, Chad’s watched that race a thousand time
            He bases his tactics on watching Phelps’ races

      • Irish Ringer says:

        I think Cseh is class act and I agree that it would have been a tough question to respond to considering. Really what would he have said? Yeah, I probably don’t deserve to be the world champ in the 200m fly since Phelps beat my time?

        Le Clos on the other hand is just a punk. I guess he’s a step up from Cavic in that he can complete with Phelps in 2 events (MP doesn’t mess with the 50 fly), but seriously he hasn’t done anything close to what Phelps did at his age.

        • lakonik says:

          If le Clos is a “punk” for saying what he said , what qualificative can we associate to Phelps for his multiple “off the pool ” antics ?

          Or do do think that getting arrested multiple times for DUI does not warrant getting called a punk ?

        • anonymus says:

          agree completely

  9. jd14 says:

    Awe man…. Phelps vs Le Clos round 2

  10. masters swimmer says:

    Wow! This is great fun. Almost like 2009 with Cavic all over again, but this time it is like a virtual duel meet halfway around the world.

    I would really like to know Bobo’s predictions for tonight. Bobo, please let us know your thoughts.

    • bobo gigi says:

      Sorry. I can’t. I’m not enough qualified to talk. I don’t have a 50-year plus experience like some big swimming experts here on swimswam.

      • masters swimmer says:

        Bobo, I always look forward to your insightful comments. You are not only very gracious but very knowledgeable. It is good for us folks her in the USA to hear your perspective on things.

        • bobo gigi says:

          No. I need a 50-year plus swimming experience to talk. I’m not enough qualified.
          That’s what I’ve read.
          So in 35 or 40 years I will come back.

          • Lazy Observer says:

            Wow. You must be super healthy or super young. I have no confidence that I can return to anything in 35 years.

            Bobo, if it is fair for you to jump on (multiple) people for comparing National times to times in Kazan, it is fair for someone else to ask you to lay off.

            You are clearly beloved of many people on SwimSwam, and someone has specifically asked for your opinion. As my coach used to say: suck it up.

          • Pvdh says:

            Well it seems Bobo is a 5 year old child…

          • Lazy Observer says:

            To be clear, I am not calling you childish. I do think you are being thin-skinned.

      • Lazy Observer says:

        Well, Bobo, at least if you’re in a tizzy, it means you’re still breathing, am I right?

      • Lane Four says:

        Bobo, you are coming across like a child. Knock it off.

        • Lane Four says:

          By the way, Bobo, excuse me for being in the sport as long as I have been and being so “old”. I have seen more and experienced more and learned to let others express themselves. I made the same mistakes as a young guy and learned. You will too. Relax. This is only swimming. You have a grasp on the sport most don’t have. Just realize that you are extremely respected on this board because of that. Don’t ruin it by over reacting to what I wrote. This board is for fans who have differing opinions but share the same love for the sport that you do. We are all in this together. Ok? It’s all good.

        • bobo gigi says:

          Dear Lane Four, ok, I don’t have your 50-year plus swimming experience.
          You are an expert. I’m not an expert.
          Ok. No problem.
          But for someone who doesn’t know anything about swimming, I’m proud of my last predictions for today’s finals.
          Read my first comment here.
          http://swimswam.com/2015-fina-world-championships-day-7-finals-preview/

          Then thanks to everyone. I’ve learned new English words like thin-skinned or tizzy.
          And Lazy I hope I will still be alive in at least 60 years!

          • bobo gigi says:

            And Lane Four I have much respect for your comments.
            And you don’t have to make excuses for being “old”.
            I think you haven’t understood.
            I just don’t want to see that forum transform into something insipid and I assume what I wrote about time comparisons.
            When I wrote it was hard to compare that was only about the pressure and the absence of semifinals in San Antonio. Nothing more.
            And it didn’t prevent from jumping for joy after Michael’s performance. You will not find a happier MP fan in the entire world than me after that race.

            Ok. Let’s move on now.

            NB: I don’t think I’m much respected here but that’s the way it is.
            I already have against me the Koch Brothers, Donald Trump, gun and oil lobbies, R congressmen and all Americans who support these criminals since I’ve posted 1 or 2 political attacks on swimswam! 😆

            Long live Lane Four and swimswam.
            Long live the democracy.
            And I love swimming.

          • Lazy Observer says:

            Well, best of luck to you then. Lots of exercise. Kale. Wine. All that.

      • Irish Ringer says:

        Come on Bobo….you were crowned the King of community contributors by Swim Swam just a few weeks back. When you are at the top you must expect some people to take a run at you 🙂

        • Lane Four says:

          To be fair, Irish, I wasn’t taking a run at Bobo. I asked him to please allow others to feel their excitement about Michael’s swim without having someone constantly raining on their parade. If Bobo can make his predictions and comments, then others can as well. By the way, I have always been pro-Bobo. If what I wrote has caused this much of an unnecessary run on the board, then I throw my hands up. And Bobo, LET IT GO. Stop saying you are not an expert. You have made your point over and over. I am walking away from this right now. It is done.

        • Lazy Observer says:

          *finit

    • bobo gigi says:

      Wow! Finally that useless war is over. I’m really tired.

      Dear Masters Swimmer, I don’t have any crystal ball but the first thing for MP is to win. And Jack Conger will make a great race. Then about the time, and maybe you will find me too cautious but I would be pleased with any swim under 51 tonight.

  11. Ross johnston says:

    Phelps is going to unleash something freakish tonight

  12. biggestsunsfan says:

    Why do these swimmers continue to “poke the bear?” Haven’t they learned from past swimmers that if they talk sh*t they are going to be beat? They are just fueling Phelps for tonight and for the next year. I’m predicting a 50.38 100 fly tonight from Phelps. I guess we’ll see if that shuts up Le Clos

  13. Tiki says:

    i hope Phelps goes in there and absolutely demolish all the fastest times to date

  14. SwimFanFinland says:

    What Laszlo Cseh meant was that he was just happy with his own swims at these world championships. What else could he say? That he is going to send his medal to MP? Think about it. Plus he said that Phelps’ time was very good.

    I haven’t seen Clos’ interview but I think that creating a bit of rivalries is exactly what swimming needs.

  15. bobo gigi says:

    And about Le Clos, Wow!
    I didn’t have much love for him since he beat MP in London.
    But now, he has lost all my respect.
    You still have to win 17 olympic gold medals and 23 world gold medals to equal MP.
    Do it and then you can talk. Good luck.
    You still have to win the next 2 olympic golds in the 100 fly to equal him.
    You still have to win the next olympic gold in the 200 fly to equal him.
    You still have to break dozens of world records to equal him.
    Do it and then you can talk.

    These young men are really insolent!

    • ERVINFORTHEWIN says:

      Yes ! he wasn’t trash talking after the 200 fly final ! that’s for sure ! I didn’t like Le Clos from the start ( attitude + his horrible stroke ) but now , he has clearly showed me that i will never like him . Cseh is way more composed and humble ( he has way more medals / races behind him too ) and enjoys his championships .

      • david says:

        Well for South Africans he’s a national hero.
        And in a country where rugby and cricket rule the roost, that saying something!!!

        • ERVINFORTHEWIN says:

          that’s great for u guys !

        • Human Ambition says:

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      • Irish Ringer says:

        Also for Cseh how many times has he come in second over the years. Let him have his moment.

      • Leclosforthewin says:

        ERVINFORTHEWIN, how does Le Clos have a bad attitude aside from the comment he made today?

        • Human Ambition says:

          I saw the comment. As far as I saw it and know Chad was just friendly. Nothing that would stir UFC. And those fighters make out with eachother after the bouts.

  16. david says:

    Just some random irrelevant unimportant fact, but who cares:
    Chad beat Cseh in to 2nd by .3, same as Worlds 2 years ago

  17. Celery says:

    I’m with those that say this is actually good for the sport. Swimming is actually fairly boring to the average person, and a little ego and showmanship in a sport dominated by mundane-ness to the uneducated should be allowed to loosen up and be more showy.

    What I mean is this: everyone remembers Gary Hall Jr. for better or worse because he put himself out there, when everyone else was afraid to do the same for fear of “angering” the rest of the field. Everyone remembers the Phelps races where he shut up his competition, or Lezak when he tore through Alain Bernard’s ego on the back half. Comments and showmanship elevate the intensity and watchability of this sport and make it 100x more exciting, and ultimately will allow the profile of the sport to grow in the public consciousness.

    • SwimFanFinland says:

      Exactly. Nothing to add.

    • anonymus says:

      I mostly disagree, sorry. I heard this argument that swimming is a “boring” sport a thousend times but I think this is not the fault of the sport but more of those spectateurs who regard it as such. I’m a swimmer myself and never competed professionally in any other sport, but I still can enjoy watching other sports like table tennis, fencing or sports that I never even came in touch with like lacrosse, because I enjoy seeing sportsmanship and passion which everyone can spot and hopefully relate to even if you dont have a direct relation to the sport. I REALLY dont want smacktalk become accepted or common in swimming because I simply lose respect for all the people doing it. The scenarios with Phelps and Leszak you are talkinig about (sorry I dont know anything about Gary Hall Jr.-I’m way too young for that) were great in my eyes because the guys who talked sh*t got kinda “schooled” by people who didnt lower themselves to that niveau but it didnt made it greater than it would have been without that smacktalk.
      I agree that swimming may not get the regard of people outside the swimming community that it would have earned but to make it more attractive for those people via smacktalking is a completely wrong way in my eyes. Remember that it is not the fact that someone or something is very popular/much remembered that counts but for what someone/something is popular/remembered

    • iLikePsych says:

      I also will respectfully disagree – and for purpose of discussion, I’m going to define ‘good for the sport’ as inviting more people to be interested in swimming while marketing swimming as the good sport it is. Now while Gary Hall Jr., Bernard, and Cavic were more jocular than the typical athlete, I doubt any of that is known by the casual, non-swim nerd viewers, nor did it bring more people to the sport (arguably…opinion, not fact on this).
      What I think was the difference maker was Phelps. The talk of Phelps’ 8 gold medals was enough to penetrate mainstream conversations, and I think most people found that unlike most other gossip about sports, it was actually positive news and not another scandal.
      I would also argue that Lochte also had some role in this with his fashion line and tv show – perhaps while not as effective though since the only things I’ve heard about him normally were jokes (i.e. “You know Prince Harry is off the deep end when what he does is too out there for Ryan Lochte” regarding Vegas).
      As for within the swimming sphere, I personally don’t think trash talking is good for the sport. Doping aside, swimming is a very honorable sport and I’d like to see it stay that way. We are benefitted in several ways in that we’re truly all just competing against the clock, there’s no contact, almost no biased refs that can be paid off. It’s all objective. And while a little banter can be refreshing, I think it’s can go south very quickly, and I just hope that if it does it doesn’t make it to the news.
      A bit longer than I intended but I think that gets my point across…

  18. Victor P says:

    Le Clos just ensured that the best he’ll do in Rio is Silver. A very motivated Phelps will break both of his fly WRs next year in Rio. I believe he’ll go 1:50 in the 200fly by next year in Rio and 49.7 in the 100.

    • biggestsunsfan says:

      Idk about two world records… Those butterfly WRs were set in the tech suit era in Rome, so they will be very difficult to beat. I do think he’ll win double gold in the fly, though.

      • Coach Mike 1952 says:

        Maybe, but look at how ripped Phelps is, and the work he has put in & now will definitely & obviously continue to put in. Remember, this IS his last Olympics so he wants to go out with a BIG splash (pun intended).

        • sven says:

          At that level of fitness, it’s not like the conditioning is going to increase linearly with work. Yes, he has a solid 10 months to put in more work, but does he physiologically have the capacity to benefit from that work? I do not believe Michael Phelps will ever break 50 in a jammer.

        • nreevesswim says:

          I agree he has put in work, but it pales in comparison to the work he put in before 2008. There, he had four years straight, including swimming on Sundays!

    • mcc says:

      Vic, I believe this, too, but the races are in the water, not on paper. If Phelps were in his early twenties, I think his winning both flys, after the comments, would be a certainty. But you’re right: The times are going to be fast. Can LeClos go sub-50? Nyaaaaa…I don’t know. He may have come close to capacity at 50.5; maybe not. :49, though? But Phelps well might. 1:50? Whew, that’d be like mayhem. Still, it’s the best thing coming up this year by far, isn’t it, this pair of LeClos/Phelps meetings? One thing that people here haven’t brought up is that there may have been a lot of gentleman’s gambit in LeClos’s words (the old man I can’t say anything about except he shouldn’t have been part of the media concern). LeClos has the one gold in pocket with the win over Phelps from London in ’12; saying that, I really do believe, in spite of whatever grandstanding antics of which LeClos and his dad may be capable, that Chad was calling Phelps out for the race itself, not for notoriety. What good would it be for LeClos to beat Phelps — or vice versa — if the latter were not at his best? Like I say, he’s already got gold, and probably, in the back of his mind feels that Phelps was not at his best in that 200 race. LeClos may even feel the win tainted by that. I know that if I ever had been that class of athlete I’d want to beat the best at their best, not at anywhere appreciably less…not even a tiny bit.

  19. Lazy Observer says:

    Watch: last night’s swim + LeClos results and comments will have us all amped up for the final and then Phelps will come in 8th at, like, 1:01.26.

    The lead up to every moment of glory is just ripe for a tragedy.

  20. Wedge says:

    49.97 for Phelps tonight. No one thought he would go 1:52, no one thinks he will go under 50, so maybe he will. You owe me 20 bucks if he does.

    • sven says:

      I’m sorry but that is laughably optimistic. I’ll be thrilled if he matches 50.5.

      • pvdh says:

        1 month ago, everyone here called a sub 1;54 by phelps a miracle

        • sven says:

          Point taken, don’t doubt Phelps. Still, 1:53 in the 200 has been done tons of times, plenty of times by Phelps in textile when he’s in shape. That’s a far cry from a time he went while in peak sprinting form in a super suit. Sorry, but sub-1:54 and sub-50 aren’t comparable at all.

    • Irish Ringer says:

      If he goes under 50 tonight I’ll give you $20…guaranteed!

  21. swammer91 says:

    So Le Clos is a big Phelps fan. He has to know that this kind of talk will fire Phelps up. Le Clos also seems to love competition and he has got to be aware that Phelps is about to swim the 100 fly at U.S. Nationals. Any chance Le Clos is intentionally trying to light a fire under Phelps to push him to an incredible 100 fly and set up a battle in Rio?

    • david says:

      Exactly, ErvinFTW please this

    • Lazy Observer says:

      Mmmmm, I am inclined to say no. To tell someone to “keep quiet now,” isn’t the language of someone goading on a friend. It is the language of someone who seems genuinely bothered by what Phelps said.

      It may be that he was thrown by what he perceived as a knock on his performance by someone he likes and admires. We can all have thin skin when someone we appreciate says something that seems dismissive.

      • david says:

        You right .
        When someone you respect and look up to, like….a brother almost….says something negetive, it hits home harder

  22. Wes D says:

    Hearing Lazlo Say that kinda irritated me Bc I thought he would be somewhat humble based on his personality but ig not?

    • sven says:

      What else can you say? “I’ll be mailing him my medal, I don’t deserve this?” He earned that gold medal and that’s that. I don’t think Cseh is out of line.

    • Emzee says:

      If you watched his interview when he said it, he was in a very giddy, excited and joking mood. Let him has his fun after coming 2nd to Phelps for over a decade, this was only his 2nd world title as well! His last was a decade ago too, so he’s very happy to be able to say that. But Cseh is still a very humble and great guy and respects Phelps. Hell, I’m sure Phelps has great respect for Cseh too, he’s always been there to push Phelps further and be has him to thank for a lot.

      • ML says:

        Yeah, it seems pretty clear Cseh wasn’t saying that Phelps’s performance doesn’t matter at all. Only that it doesn’t diminish Cseh’s happiness about winning at World’s.

  23. whoknows says:

    The pursuit of excellence in the face of adversity is invariably matched by the glory of the result!

  24. Mimi says:

    IOk, imagine what would have Lochte said to a reporter who would have asked him after the 200IM : Ryan, what do you think now that you did not swim such a great time here if Hagino the best swimmer this year was competing who would have wone the race?
    I think he probably would not even have answered that question, but if he would have been polite he might have said: well, I do not know, but it does not matter because he is not here, so I am the champion now….

    • aquajosh says:

      Have you watched any interviews with Lochte, ever? Invariably, they bring up Phelps, and Ryan is always diplomatic. Way more than I would be. Even when he won gold in the 400 IM in London and Phelps was out of the medals, all of the post race interviews with him were “How does it feel to beat Phelps?” or “What do you think happened to Phelps in this race?”

      I can totally understand Cseh saying, “Look, that’s great, and props to him, but I’m here, and I’m the World Champion.” It must suck to come second to someone so many times and then when you finally have your moment in the sun, the reporter or interviewer tries to give it back to someone else, even if that someone is as great as Phelps.

      I also hope Cseh wins the 200 fly in Rio. I’d like to see him get his opportunity to say, “I beat him fair and square; let’s talk about me now.”

      • mcgillrocks says:

        I hope he wins the 100 fly in Rio. I want Phelps to win the 200 fly and lose the 100 so he doesn’t have a greater Olympic track record in the 100 fly. He can 4-peat in the 200 IM.

        It’s always bugged me that Phelps’ OG event, the one where he first made the Olympic team in, where he first became world champ and set the WR, where he became 5-time world champion in and set arguably his greatest records, the 200 fly, is NOT one where he 3-peated, but the 100 fly, long his weakest event and certainly where he was the least dominant for most of his career, is the one that he 3-peated in and is one that takes most of the attention often.

  25. braulio says:

    Michael will quiet himself the day Papa Le Clos STOPS trying to make the star himself and quiets too!

    What’s the point with Chad to say this? bad image indeed he is creating. NBC though will be more than happy to creat and hype the ‘BIG RIVALRY’ between Michael vs Laszlo vs Chad

    Big ratings next year indeed (as if they weren’t going to happen)

  26. Luigi says:

    Swimming needs this? Speak for yourselves. Smack talking might have entertained me as a teenager. Now, it bores me to no end. The talking is done in the pool, so to speak.

    • anonymus says:

      Absolutely agree, it’s immature and probably only entertaining for people who dont care as much about the effort and work the athletes are putting in to throw out these stellar performances than about the fight about who has the longer d…

  27. david says:

    So time now in UK is 19:33, time in Texas is 13:33
    100m final is at 18:20, so need to be awake and near my ipad at……..UK time

  28. sid says:

    Blame it on the journalists, why are they asking about a guy who is not even in Kazan when interviewing Chad and Laslo

  29. We Love Phelps says:

    chad le Clos is the next Mike Cavic

    49.99 for MP tonight!
    😀 😀

  30. Crannman says:

    I am absolutely sick of Le Clos thinking he is the best swimmer on the planet . Yes , he is an Olympic Champion but in comparison to Phelps he honestly can’t even compare . Here’s to hoping Phelps can beat Le Clos in both butterflys next year

  31. sven says:

    Cseh is 100% correct. That’s like if someone at NCAA’s had asked Schooling if he felt like he deserved the 200 fly victory even though Conger was faster at conference. It’s an irrelevant question because Phelps wasn’t there.

    Le Clos definitely comes off more confrontational, but I don’t think he’s out of line. Phelps hasn’t been faster than that in textile ever, only in rubber suits, so who’s stagnant? We’ll see what happens tonight. I’m pulling for Phelps, but 50.5 is absurdly fast. I’ll be thrilled if he even ties that, let alone breaks 50.4 like some of you are saying.

  32. John says:

    What le Clos said was in direct response to Phelps saying men’s butterfly was slow so I don’t see why le Clos shouldn’t respond after posting a 50.5, which is faster than Phelps ever did in textile.

    As for Cseh, it really doesn’t matter if Phelps is posting faster times elsewhere. He wasn’t at the world champs. It’s no different from a guy who swims a WR time in the semis and fails to win the in the final. Ultimately it’s all about winning the medals.

  33. Joel Lin says:

    Last call for tough guy quotes from Kazan, the landlord is showing up again in a few hours.

  34. Paella747 says:

    Weren’t Phelps and LeClos quite close a few years ago?!?! I could swear I saw an interview where they were talking about going to South Africa and hanging out for a while. They were friends. Just after the London Olympics.

    Doesn’t anybody else remember that? I can’t remember where the interview was, or at what meet, but I know I saw it. Pretty sure it was just after London 2012.

  35. Joel Lin says:

    Seemed that way for a short while in 2012. Ian Thorpe and MP weren’t particularly tight either after Thorpe said it was impossible for MP to win 8 golds. I credit MP and Lochte for this much — I have never, ever heard of them saying an unsolicited derogatory onto a competitor. I think after Thorpe said that MP said something like “I’ve heard all this before, thanks for playing”…then he went back to work. I just don’t get it that Le Clos would say something like that the very morning before MP puts his swim in the same event in. Upside isn’t much, and the downside is looking like a complete clown. Again.

  36. nemofish says:

    I don’t see anyone blowing up yesterday, when in an interview, Phelps repeatedly said he almost won the 200 Fly in London after doing NO 200 fly training. Repeat: .10 from the gold medal after zero 200 Fly training. He’s not humble. Everyone always puts Phelps on a pedestal. . . I’ll tend to believe the comments Tyler Clary made leading up to London as genuine.

  37. Mikhail05 says:

    You guys have no idea what you are talking about watch the interview post race on youtube I have provided the link https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I4jcdMAhgZU. Chad le clos did no trash talking he actually praised that phelps came back to the sport.

    • sven says:

      Unrelated, but Le Clos didn’t shave his armpits. Huh.

    • Lazy Observer says:

      Hmmm. I don’t think this is the same interview. I believe the one referred to was on Eurostar, correct? I have seen this quoted on multiple news sites – there is nothing close to it in your clip, which leads me to believe it was said elsewhere.

      It is interesting to see him contend that phelps was training straight through 2013. Having seen the time he spent with Hank Haney, I don’t think it could have been all of 2013.

    • Boknows34 says:

      Le Clos made his comments on Eurosport with a female interviewer.

  38. steve bonack says:

    Chad LeClos definitely posted a fast time. I am a Phelps fan of course so hope that he beats his time although it will be tough. But…..one thing that bothers me is that every time Chad smiles I see his teeth which look like he still has all baby teeth. I would think he he could get some sponsorship help with fixing that…… Not joking….

  39. Euroswim says:

    Apart from all the shouting regarding Le Clos’ alleged disrespectful comment toward MP, it is very interesting to observe how the MP fans manage to push one another with regard to how fast MP will do the 100 fly later today. MP did 51.2 and 1:53.01 in London, and 50.9 in prelims. All of a sudden he is supposed to drop magically in the 100 because a rowdy South African did a 50.56, and possibly go below 50? Does last night’s marginal improvement in the 200 compared to London justify such a drop? I think not.

    • morrow3 says:

      I think it had something to do with him being ranked number 1 in the world last year in the 100 with little (for Phelps) background. Now we can see what a year of training under his belt brings, and imagine where he will be in another year.

  40. pvdh says:

    watching one of his post race interviews, it doesnt seem Le Clos had any negativity in him towards phelps. I think this “be quiet” comment was more of a “well we went fast so he wont say we are slow anymore” rather than a “shut up” type of comment. He was pretty respectful towards phelps. I think we are taking things out of context here

    • Lazy Observer says:

      He definitely seemed very upbeat in the FINA interview. I didn’t see the original. Maybe it was said playfully. It’s just the words that seem hard to wrangle into something jocular.

  41. swimdoc says:

    As much as I don’t like LeClos’ persona and his ridiculous looking around every race (and I really don’t), you gotta hand it to him, he responded —- both to losing to Laszlo in the 200 fly and to being eclipsed in the media spotlight and the world rankings by Phelps’ great time last night.

    LeClos apparently is not going to shrink at the sight of Phelps — he didn’t in London coming off the last wall, and he didn’t in his response swim of the 100 fly in Kazan.

    And knowing that, more so than the LeClos trash talk, is going to be the greatest motivation for Phelps this year. It wasn’t so much Cavic’s trash talk that motivated Phelps, it’s that he had serious game. That always brings out the best in Phelps — whether he was facing Crocker, Thorpe, Lochte or whomever. They all had game, and he knew he had to be at his best to beat them.

  42. Natee says:

    God I Hate Chad Le Clos. He’s Way Too Cocky And Feels As Though He’s Better Than Michael. He’s Good At One Race And He’s Not Even The Best At That. Stay In Your Lane.

  43. Hank says:

    Phelps textile 49.99 tonight

  44. nteliseng says:

    So phelps was right in saying that the times are slow but leclos was wrong in saying to him that they. Swem fast times? Come on americans stop being arrogant

  45. Tm says:

    I had little respect for le close before now I have none at all! This is the same punk who mocks his opposition by looking around and having this hideous smirk. Cavic at least set a WR what has le close done in LCM to that effect ? We all know what happened to cavic and his big mouth, same will happen to le close. You might have noticed that I wrote Le close which I did on purpose because after he meets MP in the pool he will have to CLOSE his mouth !

  46. masters swimmer says:

    OK all you passionate commentators the following is a quick summary from the above folks who made some predictions:

    Shoebaca: 50.19. bold, specific. nice work
    Jack: Sub 50.40. C’mon Jack, let’s put a specific number on it.
    Masters swimmer: 50.43
    Wedge: 49.97. Irish ringer owes $20 if Wedge is right
    Sven: 50.5. great minds think alike, what else can I say?
    Hank: 49.99. You and Wedge are going big. I like it.

    Folks, there is still time. Gives us your predictions. Maybe the most anticipated race of the year.

  47. Dee says:

    If Phelps goes under 50.4 tonight, after years of trying, I’d find that hard to comprehend, I have to be honest about that. Next year I could understand if he concentrated on ‘fly but today? Bridge too far for me.

    Loving Le Clos having something about himself – If you think he is being rude, you really are thin-skinned. Finally somebody willing to lay down the gauntlet and say ‘come on then’ to their rivals instead of this all smiles tosh ?

  48. Fan mvp says:

    Could someone tell the story about MP and Cavic conflict?

  49. tm says:

    if dont think MP has worked that much on his speed going out to go below 50.8 at this time, but if he does then le close will be going for the minor medals next summer.

    • John says:

      Mary T. can say that butterfly times (200m) have plateaued for 30 years (suits aside) and McLaughlin / Adams would surely have to agree with her. Can’t think of a female Le Clos.

  50. YiJiun says:

    Let’s not forget that Rio’s climate is closer to South Africa’s. 🙂

    • tm says:

      you obviously u did not watch the soccer world cup in 2010 and 2014 to compare the climates of south africa and brazil. brazil is relatively warm and humid except for the south even in our summer (their winter months). south africa is drier and colder.

    • adi says:

      Chad lives in Durban, South Africa. Durban weather IS warm and humid.

  51. KD says:

    *Phelps reads comments*

    *swims 48.3*

    *Goes to press interview*

    “Michael, how’d that swim feel to you?”

    “Argument over, Chad.”

  52. DRUKSTOP says:

    Le CLos didn’t shave his armpit hair????? That may be the first from a world champ

  53. SwimFan says:

    I lke Conger over Le Clos and Cseh this time next year. So 1-2 for the USA

  54. Tara says:

    So maybe Le Clos swam a time Michael hasn’t done in 4 years. Michael still accomplished it four years sooner and he was 3 years older at the time than Le Clos is now.

  55. Philip Johnson says:

    Here are the facts: le Clos has ONE Olympic gold and Phelps eighteen. Phelps has set numerous long course records and le Clos none. le Clos simply doesn’t have the accolades to talk trash.

    • sid says:

      BUT ITS PHELPS WHO STARTED TALKING DOWN AT OTHER BUTTERFLIERS, SO THEY HAVE EVERY RIGHT TO RESPOND ANYWAY THEY SEE FIT. IF LECLOS BEATS PHELPS AGAIN IN RIO THAT WILL BE ENOUGH FOR HIM.

      • sid says:

        I Think what also got under LeClos skin is that Phelps said he almost won the 200 butterfly in London without even training for it.So LeClos wants to have a rematch with Phelps at his best. So there will be no excuses afterwards.

  56. Division2coach says:

    I believe he will go 50.72 I believe he realized that he needed to work on his base and put in some good training at altitude so in he short term his speed will suffer( if you call 50.72 suffering), but I believe he will come back next year and go 50.33 to win gold in RIO.

  57. Lol says:

    Lol Chad Le Clos, not number 1 anymore ?

  58. masters swimmer says:

    OK prognosticators, here is the updated predictions:

    Shoebaca: 50.19. bold, specific. nice work
    Jack: Sub 50.40. C’mon Jack, let’s put a specific number on it. If no update, no way to win
    Masters swimmer: 50.43
    Wedge: 49.97. Irish ringer owes $20 if Wedge is right
    Sven: 50.8. He just revised it up from 50.5 in an earlier post. Come now
    Hank: 49.99. You and Wedge are going big. I like it.
    Division2Coach: 50.72. Hope you beat Sven just because he changed his earlier post
    KD: 48.3 Whooooaaa. Sure you want to stay with that one? That drop is Ledeckyian
    TM: “not below 50.8” sorry, that means you Sven are locked in at exactly 50.8. No bueno
    Dee: 50.79. That’s right, you tell Sven and TM how it is gonna be

    Well, there we have it for now. Not too late to add your prediction to the list. Most anticipated race of the year!!

  59. Josh says:

    Phelps with a 50.45!! Chad, please be quiet now..

  60. LOLLERcoaster says:

    Well, Phelps did his response in the pool.

    The more entertaining story is that Schooling beat Conger.

  61. Mark says:

    Far cry from calling phelps his hero during the London post interview

    “It’s been a dream of mine ever since I was a little boy,” le Clos said. “I just wanted to race Phelps in the final and I’ve beaten him. I can’t believe it. Phelps is my hero and I love the guy. To beat him, I can’t believe it. You don’t understand what this means to me. This is the greatest moment of my life.”

  62. Brando says:

    I will dislike Le Clos, simply based the fact that he referred to himself in the third person. “Look, I don’t want to say it’s easy to swim by yourself, but it’s a lot harder when you know Chad le Clos is coming back at you the last 50 meters,” Le Clos said.

  63. Ravi says:

    The boy Joseph Schooling is only 20 years old and is one for the future. Maybe he can surprise Le Clos and Phelps in Rio. If not, he can be the champ in Tokyo.

  64. tempus says:

    Le Clos is a punk, as said above–athletes who refer to themselves in the third person have a little ego problem….and Le Clos apparently is too dumb to know Vince Lombardi’s immortal maxim: ‘sweet talk your opponents to death.’ Trash talk only gets the testosterone flowing even faster and Phelps was already motivated again, LOL…….

  65. MeSteve says:

    I hear many people trash talking Chad, but they should stop for a moment and consider this simple fact, Chad is the only swimmer in the world to beat, arguably, the greatest swimmer we have seen, at his favorite event, on the biggest stage of all! That in itself demands that he should be respected as a serious contender in Rio, after all how many swimmers are there alive who could lay claim to that?

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About Loretta Race

Loretta Race

Loretta grew up outside Toledo, OH, where she swam age group and high school. Graduating from Xavier University, she stayed in the Cincinnati, OH area and currently resides just outside the city in Northern KY.  Loretta got back into the sport of swimming via Masters and now competes and is …

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