By Barry Michaelson
You would think things couldn’t get any worse for American bad boy swimmer Ryan Rochte, who made up an incident at the Rio Olympics, lied about it, had to pay a huge fine and has lost just about every shred of credibility he had.
Not to mention four big corporate sponsorship!
Lochte is going on Dancing with the Stars, locking down a deal in the works before his Olympic saga, a person familiar with the deal confirmed to USA TODAY Sports yesterday.
The 23rd season of the show premieres on Sept. 12.
Lochte, the 12-time Olympic medalist who was condemned in media reports around the globe for exaggerating a true story, was dropped by four sponsors on Monday after authorities in Rio de Janeiro declared in a jammed press conference last week that he had fabricated a report that he and three teammates on the U.S. swim team were held up at gunpoint by men with badges.
Instead, the incident was portrayed as a case of vandalism — authorities said the swimmers trashed a bathroom and urinated against the building — and Lochte andJimmy Feigen were accused of falsely claiming a robbery to cover up their misdeeds. The police said the men were detained by guards because Lochte had additionally damaged a poster.
Lochte, who acknowledged he’d been drinking, had drawn the ire of authorities when he incorrectly described the incident in an impromptu interview hours after it occurred, saying that the men had been “pulled over” and he had a “gun to the forehead.”
Neither of those details were correct and Lochte drew outrage from Brazilians who had grown tired of skepticism in the foreign press about their ability to host a secure Olympics. But the swimmers were in a cab about to pull away from the station when a man with a badge stopped it, and one of the guards did aim a gun at Lochte from close range, surveillance videos show.