Caeleb Dressel is set to impress at this year's Tokyo Olympics and it’s no surprise, as he is dubbed “the next Michael Phelps” by many. But his hype has turned attention away from the stacked American swim team.
So here are 6 male American swimmers other than Caeleb Dressel who can impress at the Tokyo Olympics 2021:
24 year old Zach specializes in sprint freestyle events. He turned heads in the 2017 World Championships trials as he beat the likes of Caeleb Dressel and Nathan Adrian in the prelims and qualifying for the 400m freestyle relay in Budapest.
Unlike his more senior counterpart Caeleb Dressel, Zach is yet to make his Olympic debut and will be hoping to help his team out in the 400m freestyle relay, as he did in the 2019 World Championships.
One of the youngest swimmers to turn professional in recent history, Michael signed a professional deal with P2 Life at the tender age of just 14. He is known to be Caeleb Dressel's biggest rival and the two have gone head-to-head on multiple occasions.
Andrew follows a unique training style based on scientific facts called USRPT (Ultra Short Race Pace Training), which is not widely accepted by the swimming community.
A 19 year old Michael won his first U.S. national title while beating the likes of Caeleb Dressel in the 50m Butterfly. He went on to win 4 titles in 4 nights that week and proved the doubters wrong.
“I do feel like this is kind of the kickstart of my adult professional career,” Andrew said that week.
When asked about his strongest stroke, he said he doesn’t have one as he focuses on all 4 equally. This will hold a major advantage as the 22 year old is looking to debut this year in the Tokyo Olympics.
Also Read: Michael Andrew caps breakout US Nationals with 50 free win
The current national record holder for all individual short course Butterfly events (50m, 100m and 200m) will turn 30 this July. He can prove to be Caeleb Dressel's fiercest competitor given that most of the events they are participating in are the same.
Shields’ first attempt to represent his country at the Olympics was in Beijing 2008, but to no avail. In 2012, a more experienced 23 year old Shields narrowly missed out on qualifying for the 100m Butterfly as he finished 4th.
Determined to breakthrough, Shields finally swam at Rio 2016 after finishing just behind Phelps in every event in the qualifiers. He bagged gold in the 400m medley relay and impressed with his stroke technique.
In the most recent edition of the Pan-American Games (2019), Shields won gold in the 100m Butterfly, putting up a season-best time of 51.59. He’ll be hoping to impress at the Tokyo Olympics as they could well be his last given his age.
Specializing in short freestyle events, Pieroni qualified for the Rio 2016 Olympics after earning a spot in the 400m freestyle relay. He won his first Olympic gold for his heat swim in the 400m freestyle relay and helped the U.S. qualify for the finals with a 48.39 split time.
Pieroni performed beyond expectations at the 2019 FINA World Championships. He helped his team win the gold medal in the 400m freestyle relay and finished strong in the 4 x 200m freestyle relay to help them secure a bronze.
This spurt of form and good results makes Blake Pieroni, much like Caeleb Dressel, another exciting prospect for the Tokyo Olympics and the 400m freestyle relay will be a joy to watch.
A world record holder in the 100m backstroke event, Murphy has big hopes for the Tokyo Olympics. Already with 3 Olympic golds at Rio 2016 in 100m backstroke, 200m backstroke and a 4 x 100m medley relay, Murphy is expected to dominate the backstroke event again. Much like Caeleb Dressel, he is a top athlete in his stroke and can go onto further his medal tally.
He recently bagged silver in the 200m backstroke at the World Championships held in South Korea (2019).