2020 Tokyo Olympics: Michael Phelps Says Team USA Star Swimmer Katie Ledecky ‘Would’ve Destroyed’ Him

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)

He was awarded nearly 30 medals during a span of five Olympics, but even Michael Phelps admits there are some swimmers, including fellow USA teammates, that can actually take him on and win. 

In a new interview, Michael Phelps states that Katie Ledecky, a fellow Team USA swimmer who is a rising star in the 2020 Olympic Games, would have actually beat him back in the day. “I had the privilege to train with her at the last training camp, in 2016. I’m very happy that she didn’t do the exact set with us that day because she would’ve destroyed me.”

Phelps also says that Katie is incredible. Over the weekend, Ledecky narrowly lost in the women’s 400m freestyle. She later rebounded and advanced to the 200m freestyle semifinals. Ledecky has competed in a total of three Olympic Games. In total, Katie has won nearly 35 medals in major international competitions, including Olympic Games and World Championships. 

Michael Phelps Talks Team USA During 2020 Olympics 

In a recent interview with Today, Michael Phelps discusses Team USA’s swimmers and how they are doing during the 2020 Olympics. “I love it. Being able to start the Olympics as they did, you know obviously some surprises. But being able to have a team that’s 68% rookies, for me, that’s amazing.”

Michael says that the sport’s future is in good hands based on the talent he is seeing during this year’s Olympics. He also speaks about Katie by stating, “This morning was a big test. Being able to bounce back from a defeat like that is tough. Especially when she has been so dominant for so long in that race.”

Phelps then says that Katie swam that Olympics’ race perfectly. “Katie is a strong person. She’s the GOAT – the greatest of all time. So her being able to bounce back from a big race this morning. She’s got the mile later on. I think she’s going to be fine.”

In regards to Team USA’s swimmer, Caeleb Dressel, Michael adds, “I chatted with him earlier. He was happy that he got the first race out of the way. The first race can be difficult. You’re overexcited. He’s prepared himself for this moment and he showed it this morning.” 

Michael Phelps Also Praises Ahmed Hafnaoui of Tunisia 

While also at the 2020 Olympic Games, Michael Phelps shares his enthusiasm for Tunisian swimmer Ahmed Hafnaoui. The 18-year-old swimmer notably won the men’s 400m freestyle during this year’s event. According to Reuters, Phelps states, “Unbelievable swim, I think he knocked almost five seconds off his personal best.”

Michael then adds that he believes the difference between this year’s Olympic Games and past Games is that every single person in the final has a chance of winning the gold.