What's Buzzing:

Michael Phelps loses to Lochte in comeback meet

AP - Sports
Phelps tries sprinting in 2nd event of comeback
.

View gallery

MESA, Ariz. (AP) -- Michael Phelps is 0 for 1 in his comeback to the pool.

The 22-time Olympic medalist lost to Ryan Lochte in the 100-meter butterfly final at the Arena Grand Prix on Thursday night.

Lochte touched first in 51.93 seconds, second-fastest in the world this year. Phelps took second in 52.13 in his first meet since retiring after the 2012 London Olympics.

Phelps is the three-time Olympic champion and current world record-holder in the event. His time tied for fourth-quickest in the world.

Olympian Jason Dunford of Kenya finished third in 53.08.

Phelps was faster in the final than he was in winning his preliminary heat with a time of 52.84.

Swimming before a sellout crowd and lots of cameras, Lochte led at the turn and Phelps was second.

''Down there at the turn I kind of peeked over and I saw him and almost started smiling,'' Lochte said about his longtime friend and rival.

Phelps interjected, ''Why? Because you were ahead?''

An on-deck interviewer reminded Phelps his mother has said she wants to go to Rio for the 2016 Olympics, which would be his fifth.

''Whatever he wants,'' Debbie Phelps shouted from the stands.

Phelps replied, ''Good mother.''

Phelps wasn't smiling as he walked on deck for the final, unlike in the prelims. He kept his ear buds in until he was introduced as an 18-time Olympic gold medalist. With his long hair sticking out from the back of his cap, he dived in next to Lochte, who beat him down to the first turn.

Earlier Thursday, retired speedskater Apolo Anton Ohno, the most decorated U.S. Winter Olympian, tweeted good luck to Phelps, saying, ''Excited to see you back brother.''

The three-day meet sold out every session the day his comeback was announced last week, with a capacity of 1,200 at Skyline Aquatic Center. A pair of $40 all-session tickets was being advertised online for $250. USA Swimming issued 100 media credentials - five times more than usual.

The possible future of American swimming with the same first name as Phelps was in the 100 fly heats. Michael Andrew, a 15-year-old from Lawrence, Kan., qualified for the 'C' final in 55.23. He has broken more than 30 national age-group records and last June became the youngest U.S. male swimmer to turn pro. He was excited to meet his idol Phelps on Wednesday.

''Swimming needs you!'' he tweeted after they traded handshakes. ''You rock!''

Both of Phelps' times were easily good enough to surpass the qualifying standard of 54.79 for the U.S. national championships in August. That meet will decide the team for next year's world championships.

''One step at a time,'' he said in the morning.

View Comments (16)
  • World Baseball Classic qualifying: South Africa into final

    SYDNEY (AP) -- Catcher Kyle Botha's bases-loaded double in the sixth inning scored three runs to break open a close game and give South Africa a 9-2 win over New Zealand and a spot in Sunday's final against Australia in a regional World Baseball … More »

    AP - Sports - 39 minutes ago
  • Bulgaria hard man Ivanov, 50, dies after heart attack

    Bulgaria hard man Ivanov, 50, dies after heart attack

    Former hard-man defender Trifon Ivanov, who was instrumental in helping Bulgaria reach the 1994 World Cup semi-finals, died on Saturday at the age of 50 after suffering a heart attack. The Bulgarian Football Union announced the death of Ivanov who … More »

    Reuters - 59 minutes ago
  • I'm 2-0 up in battle against cancer, says Cruyff

    I'm 2-0 up in battle against cancer, says Cruyff

    Dutch soccer great Johan Cruyff says he is "2-0 up in the first half" of his fight against lung cancer and confident of winning the battle. A former smoker who had heart surgery in 1991, the 68-year-old former Barcelona coach was diagnosed with … More »

    Reuters - 1 hour 9 minutes ago
  • FIFA candidate Salman says FIFA to stay in Zurich - interview

    FIFA candidate Salman says FIFA to stay in Zurich - interview

    FIFA presidential candidate Sheikh Salman bin Ebrahim Al Khalifa plans to keep the world soccer body's headquarters in Zurich and retain the name "FIFA" if he wins the race for the game's top job later this month. Salman, answering questions in an … More »

    Reuters - 1 hour 16 minutes ago
  • Germany has 1-2 lead in 2-man bob race at worlds

    Germany has 1-2 lead in 2-man bob race at worlds

    Johannes Lochner and Francesco Friedrich gave Germany a 1-2 lead in the two-man bob competition at the world championships after the opening two heats on Saturday. Junior world champion Lochner and his pushing partner, Joshua Bluhm, finished in an … More »

    AP - Sports - 1 hour 24 minutes ago