Countdown to selection: Determining the U.S. men's Olympic gymnastics team (2024)

The culmination of years of relentless dedication and sacrifice by the nation's top gymnasts reaches its zenith at the 2024 U.S. Olympic Gymnastics Team Trials, with only one day of competition remaining.

World all-around bronze medalistFrederick Richard and three-time national championBrody Malone have all but secured their spots on the Paris Olympic team based on their outstanding performances at the U.S. Championships and on Day 1 of Trials, where they finished first and second in the all-around, respectively.

From there, the remaining three spots are just about anybody's guess.

The all-around champion at the end of the two-day competition can secure his spot by finishing in the top three on three events. However, the remainder of the team selection isn't solely based on all-around rankings; it's a strategic decision.

For the five-man team, the selection committee will be looking for three scores on each apparatus to assemble the highest-scoring team total. Results from both the U.S. Championships and Trials will come into play.

The committee will be looking at two different data sets: one will average all of the athletes' scores from nationals and Trials, and the other will use the athletes' three best scores out of the four competitions. See below for a list of the current highest-scoring team scenarios.

Essentially, the more times an athlete’s name appears, the better their chances.

To piece the team together, the selection committee will be looking for the right combination of individual event potential and all-around prowess to field the most competitive team final lineup, with the possibility of bringing home some individual hardware from Paris as well.

“Step one is really looking at the team score and seeing how that compares and also how individual event opportunities work its way in there – or not,” USA Gymnastics high performance director Brett McClure said. “We’ll always start with the team first and then move to individual events.”

In Tokyo, the U.S. men were nearly six points behind the top teams in terms of difficulty. By the 2023 World Championships, where the team ended a nine-year world medal drought with a bronze, the gap had closed to two points.

In Paris, the goal for the U.S. men is to get back on the medal podium - something they haven't done at the Olympics since 2008.

“Heading into the Paris Olympic Games, on a number of different combinations of athletes we can be within a point of China and Japan potentially,” McClure said. “It’s a puzzle that we’re going to have to look at all the pieces to see how it fits together.”

In other words, for many of the athletes vying for an Olympic berth, the final day of competition could be the most important of their careers.

Tokyo OlympianYul Moldauer continues to hold strong, currently sitting sixth all-around after Day 1. Moldauer continues to prove he can be a solid option on several events, most notably on floor exercise and parallel bars where he finished second and first, respectively, at nationals.

Like Richard and Malone, Moldauer currently sits on several of the highest-scoring team scenarios. If he can continue that momentum through the final day of competition, Moldauer should be in good standing to make the team.

Two athletes who improved their chances are Tokyo OlympianShane Wiskus, who performed well in front of a home crowd on Day 1 and finished third overall, and world team bronze medalistPaul Juda, who sits fourth all-around, thanks to his clean execution. Juda’s routines may not be the most difficult, but he continues to prove he can outscore some of his competitors with clean, consistent routines.

When looking at the highest-scoring team scenarios after three meets, Wiskus and Juda are neck and neck. One of them is likely to get a spot. It just may come down to who outscores the other on Day 2 of Trials.

A year ago,Asher Hong looked like a strong candidate for the team, but struggled at nationals, finishing 10th all-around. While he looked much better on Day 1 of Trials – he currently sits fifth all-around – those scores from nationals are still pulling his averages down.

Hong’s performance on Day 1 of Trials alone has him on several of the highest-scoring team scenarios, which proves his potential - but that’s not what the selection committee will be assessing. The biggest question remains whether Hong can make up enough ground on Day 2 to put his name on a few of the highest-scoring data sets. Still rings and vault are where he can make the biggest impact.

Khoi Young is another name that is hard not to envision in the mix for Paris given his success over the last year. He is a three-time world medalist and finished third all-around at nationals. However, on Day 1 of Trials, Young fell twice on pommel horse, an event where he is a world silver medalist and could help the U.S. team tremendously.

Young also fell on Day 1 at nationals, meaning he is 1-3 on an event that could have been used to solidify his spot on the team. His errors have cracked open the door for a pommel horse specialist such as 2021 world championStephen Nedoroscik to potentially make the team.

Although Nedoroscik did not perform his intended difficulty on Day 1 of Trials (he reached a 6.5 D-score at the Winter Cup earlier this year, but only performed a 5.6 D-score on Day 1), he still remains on the highest-scoring team scenario. However, the most competitive routines in the world are posting scores in the mid-15 range, so Nedoroscik will need to prove he can hit that mark if he wants a shot.

To make matters more intense,Patrick Hoopes tied Nedoroscik on Day 1, which means if the selection committee opts for a pommel horse specialist, Nedoroscik cannot afford to make a mistake or water-down his routine on Day 2.

Curran Phillips has the potential to be one of the best in the world on parallel bars, which could be his ticket to Paris. His scores from Day 1 of Trials have kept his name in the conversation, however, his Day 2 performance will be critical as he withdrew from the final day of competition at nationals with a thumb injury – a missed opportunity to put up a big score.

The U.S. men’s Olympic team will be announced following the conclusion of competition on Saturday, June 29.

Here’s a look at where things stand ahead of the final day of competition in the Olympic selection process.

Countdown to selection: Determining the U.S. men's Olympic gymnastics team (2024)

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