The Iron Swimmers of the 2020 ISL Season: 200M+ High Point Scorers

Braden Keith
by Braden Keith 16

November 24th, 2020 News

The International Swimming League is set up around sprinting. The league’s management has not been shy about the fact that they believe that the sprints appeal most to a mainstream-sports television audience, and the league has been established in such a way to reflect that belief. That includes the high-points ‘skins’ races, the absence of any races over 400 meters, the cutaways during the broadcasts of the 400 IM, and the choice of relays.

It’s not a coincidence that sprinters dominate the ranks of the ISL’s season MVP standings.

But what teams have also found in recruiting is that globally, depth in many of these 200m+ events is lacking as well. Several teams reported to SwimSwam trouble filling slots in their lineups in events like the 200 fly and 400 IM.

We thought it was worth honoring those “Iron” swimmers who did the less glamorous dirty work of the ISL, racing in the 200 meter + events. Below is a list of the top 20 points scorers in ISL 2020 in races 200 meters or longer.

Some of these swimmers, like the top name Hali Flickinger, focused almost entirely on 200m+ races. Others, like Siobhan Haughey and Ryan Murphy, did well across distances.

Notably absent from this list: the dominant Lilly King, who finished 2nd in the league this season in MVP scoring. It seems like, if 200 breast specialist Marco Koch is on the list, and Ryan Murphy, who swam only 1 200m+ event, the 200 back, are on this list, she should be too.

While she did win the 200 breaststroke in 5 of the 6 meets she swam it in, she didn’t have the same huge jackpots that we saw from Koch and Murphy. She would check in just behind the listed swimmers with 73 points in the 200 breaststroke this season.

The Tokyo Frog Kings have a lot of entries on this list, in spite of not making the final, which highlights that they were very good in the longer races, but that their undoing was in the sprints, especially on the women’s side.

2020 ISL Season Highest Scorers in Races 200m or Longer

Thanks to Barry Revzin for Compiling this Data:

Swimmer Team
Hali Flickinger Cali Condors 218
Siobhan Haughey Energy Standard 141
Sydney Pickrem London Roar 131
Yui Ohashi* Tokyo Frog Kings 116
Danas Rapsys Energy Standard 114
Duncan Scott London Roar 99
Beata Nelson Cali Condors 98
Leonardo Santos* Iron 97
Katinka Hosszu* Iron 95
Tessa Cieplucha* Toronto Titans 94
Sakiko Shimizu* Tokyo Frog Kings 93
Kosuke Hagino* Tokyo Frog Kings 93
Marco Koch* New York Breakers 90
Kelsey Wog* Toronto Titans 88
Ryan Murphy LA Current 88
Abbie Wood* New York Breakers 84
Helena Gasson LA Current 82
Andreas Vazaios London Roar 80
Tom Shields LA Current 80
Zsu Jakabos Energy Standard 77

Asterisks represent swimmers whose teams did not qualify for the semifinals, so they had one less meet than the other swimmers on the list.

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2 years ago

Flickinger is the new Hosszu

Daniel Smith
2 years ago

Braden: Do you think thexperimental 8free will attarct more of the distance specialists and/or folks like Hosszu, Belmonte Garcia, Leah Smith, Zach Harting, etc? I like the intent of the 800, and the teams should be able to recruitt a few “jack-of-all-trades” swimmers at 200+ distances.

Daniel Smith
Reply to  Braden Keith
2 years ago

Sounds like a plan, if that is it. I hope they can achieve that; will make it more interesting and diverse.

2 years ago

Top 4 are female. Interesting.

2 years ago

Really bummed Margalis had to leave early, she’d be very high up on this list otherwise.

2 years ago

Flickinger getting the love she deserves

2 years ago

I liked the ISL. I hope there will be less favoritism in the selection process and more equal teams. A lot of top level athletes are left out from the big show, probably with faster times than some.
Of course all the top swimmers will want to go with Dressel.

Reply to  Swimfan
2 years ago

More equal teams would mean MORE top level athletes left out of the big show. Not saying that’s a plus or minus, but you seem to be making opposing points.

Reply to  Eagleswim
2 years ago

The whole selection process is about who you know, leaves out some good athletes. Or we can just leave it like this and have Cali condors win every year. Having some sort of draft would make it more fair and competitive.

Reply to  Eagleswim
2 years ago

ISL all stars meet?

Reply to  Drewbrewsbeer
2 years ago

You mean short course worlds

2 years ago

Speaking of longer distance swimmers, did I miss it or was there no article on the 800 free test race?

Reply to  DMacNCheez
2 years ago

Yeah.. and 2 swimmers almost broke the WR…

Reply to  DMacNCheez
2 years ago

I think they’re waiting because we don’t know if the swims are official times yet.

Reply to  N P
2 years ago

Didn’t seem to stop swimming world from doing a recap. Seems it was a super fast race

About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder/co-owner of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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