Top 10 US Athletes to Bet On in the Tokyo Olympics

By in Olympics on
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Simone Biles, Adeline Gray, and Nyjah Huston

On Friday, July 23rd, the 2021 Summer Olympics, also known as the Tokyo Olympics, will get underway with 339 events spanning across 33 different sports and 50 different disciplines. Roughly 206 nations and over 11,200 athletes are expected to compete in these Olympic games.

The United States comes into the Olympics as the betting favorite to win the most total medals. However, with over 500 American athletes competing in Tokyo it’s hard to know which ones are the best to wager on.

Fortunately, we’ve taken the guesswork out of this daunting task by creating a list of the Top 10 U.S. athletes to bet on for the Tokyo Olympics Summer Games.

Keep in mind, these are individual athletes and not well-known team stars like Kevin Durant or Megan Rapinoe.

Simone Biles – Gymnastics

There are Olympic Champions and then there are Olympic icons. Simon Biles falls into the latter category. Not only is she one of the greatest American gymnasts of all-time, but she’s also one of the winningest Olympic athletes of all-time.

Biles has won 25 world championship medals including 19 gold, which is 10 more than any other female gymnast in history. Biles has also won every all-around competition she’s entered in which includes five world championships and one Olympic gold in 2016.

In fact, Biles ended up taking home four golds and one bronze at Rio in 2016. She’s expected to win up to five golds in Tokyo including the all-around for the second straight time.

If she wins the all-around gold at Tokyo, Simone would be the first woman since Vera Caslavska in 1964 and 1968 to accomplish this feat.

According to the GOAT herself, the mission is to best her performance in 2016:

“I’m trying to be better than I was at the last meet, so I’m trying to beat myself. And so now I’m doing things that were unimaginable to the sport, and even for myself, and it’s honestly crazy but I’m really excited because I feel like I’ve pushed my limits.”

There are no bigger American Olympic stars competing in Tokyo this year than Biles. As of this writing, Olympics betting sites don’t have odds available for her competitions.

Allyson Felix – Track and Field

Another great American storyline for the 2021 Olympic Games is the potential for history to be made on the track with Allyson Felix.

This year marks the 5th time that Felix will compete in the Olympics. Her first appearance came in 2004 in Athens. Allyson has six gold medals and three silver medals over the previous four Olympics.

She’s the only female track and field star to win six gold medals. Her total of nine Olympic medals is tied for the most with Merlene Ottey.

The following is a breakdown of Felix’s Olympic medals:

  • 2004: Silver medal in 200-meter
  • 2008: Silver medal in 200-meter, Gold in 4×400 relay
  • 2012: Gold medal in 200-meter, Gold in 4×100 relay, Gold in 4×400 relay
  • 2016: Silver in 400-meter, Gold in 4×100 relay, Gold in 4×400 relay

Felix is expected to make the finals for all three events that she’s competing in: 400-meter, 4×400 meter relay, and 4×400 meter mixed relay.

Unfortunately, she didn’t qualify for the 200-meters this time around. Instead, her teammate Gabby Thomas is the favorite to win the gold in this event with +175 odds.

If she can capture two more medals, Allyson could become the winningest track and field athlete of all-time with 11 total medals which would surpass the great Carl Lewis.

Noah Lyles – Track and Field

Noah Lyles will be making his Olympic debut in Tokyo. He’s the man to beat in the 200-meters having won the race at the U.S. trials along with being the reigning world champion. Lyles recorded the fasted time for the 200-meters this season at 19.74 seconds.

Currently, Noah Lyles is a -120-betting favorite to win the gold in this event. Two of his teammates Erriyon Knighton and Kenneth Bednarek are also expected to contend for medals.

The American track and field teams for both the men and women are expected to come away with a large haul of medals in Tokyo. Felix and Lyles are just two of the many great track stars favored to win gold.

Ryan Crouser – Shot Put

Crouser won’t be running or sprinting his way to gold, but he will be the favorite to bring home the gold for the shot put event.

Standing at 6’7” and 320 pounds, Ryan is the reigning Olympic gold medal champion having set an Olympic record in Rio five years ago.

He started off his 2021 season with an indoor world record at 22.82 meters. But, that paled in comparison to what he did next.

At the U.S. Trials, Crouser broke what many pundits, athletes and fans had hailed as a mythical, unbreakable record when he threw for over 23.37 meters (76 feet, 8.25 inches). It broke a record that stood for 31 years.

The American team could end up sweeping the medal podium for the shot put competition. In addition to Crouser, Joe Kovacs and Payton Otterdahl are in contention for medals as well.

Caeleb Dressel – Swimming

No Phelps, no problem as the men’s swimming team still has a sprinter that can bring home multiple gold medals in Caeleb Dressel. In fact, many have dubbed him the “Next Michael Phelps.”

At the 2016 Olympics, Dressel came away with two gold medals due to participating on the relay teams but no individual medals. That can all change over the next few weeks in Tokyo.

Since Rio, Dressel has won eight medals including six golds at the 2019 World Aquatics Championships. Furthermore, he holds the world record in the 50-meter freestyle, 100-meter butterfly and the 100-meter individual medley.

Dressel is the betting favorite in all three of the individual events that he will compete in at Tokyo. Currently, online betting sites have him listed at +125 for the 100-meter freestyle and -600 for the 100-meter butterfly. There are no odds for the 50-meter freestyle as of this writing.

In addition to his three individual events, Dressel will also be competing in four relays. Can he leave Tokyo with seven gold medals?

Katie Ledecky – Swimming

Speaking of swimming, you can’t talk about this sport without mentioning the great Katie Ledecky. She is a five time Olympic gold medalist and the defending Olympic champ in the 200-m, 400-m, and 800-m freestyle.

In addition to those events, Ledecky will also compete in the 1,500-meter freestyle which will make its debut in Tokyo. She’s a massive betting favorite to win this event at -1600 odds.

Both the 200-m and the 1,500-m will take place on the same day. If she can win both, she will become the first woman to accomplish that feat and only the 6th swimmer in history to do so.

Additionally, if Katie can win the 800-m freestyle, which she is the betting favorite online at -350 odds, Ledecky will join Dawn Fraser (100-m freestyle) and Krisztina Egerszegi (200-m backstroke) as the only women to win the same swimming event in three straight Olympics.

Surprisingly, Ledecky is not the favorite in the 200-m and 400-m freestyle. Katie is listed at +325 for the 200-m, which is behind Arlane Titmus at -225. In the 400-m, she’s also listed behind Titmus (-165) with +120 odds.

In addition to her individual events, Ledecky will also compete in the 4×200. If she can win gold in all five competitions, then Katie will hold the record for the most gold medals by any woman in the history of the Olympics. Currently, gymnast Larisa Latynina holds the record with nine.

Adeline Gray – Wrestling

The American wrestling teams for both the men and women will have a tough road ahead of them if they want to win gold in Greco Roman and Freestyle wrestling.

For the women, host country Japan looks to be the top team once again after winning gold medals in four of the six freestyle weight classes in the 2016 Olympics.

The only American woman to win a gold at Rio was Helen Maroulis. And, although she returns to defend her championship, a great deal of talk has been about Adeline Gray instead.

Gray is a five time world champion and one of only two Americans to have ever won consecutive titles. Yet, she accomplished that feat twice.

Adeline was an alternate in the 2012 Olympics, but didn’t make her debut until the 2016 Olympics. Unfortunately, a shoulder injury limited her and she lost in the quarterfinals.

This year, many pundits have Gray listed as the favorite to win the gold in the 76kg freestyle. She’s ranked #1 in the world, but will have to get past Canada’s Erica Wiebe who won the gold in this weight class at Rio in 2016.

As of this writing, there are no women’s wrestling odds. It will be interesting to see how oddsmakers list both Gray and Wiebe.

Kyle Snyder – Wrestling

Like the American women with Japan, the American men will have to overcome Russia and their fleet of gold medal winners. One man who could accomplish this task is Kyle Snyder.

Snyder won the gold in the 2016 Olympic games for the 97kg freestyle at just 20 years old. He would go on to beat the legendary Abdulrashi Sadulaev to win gold at the World Championships, but would lose tom him in 2018. He also won four golds at the Pan American games over that span.

Once again, Snyder will have to go through Sadulaev to win the gold in Tokyo. Currently, Sadulaev is a large favorite at -325. Snyder is listed at +300. He’s one of the best value bets for Americans at the 2021 Olympic Games.

Carissa Moore – Surfing

Is there a more fitting surfer to win the gold medal for the Olympic debut of women’s surfing than Carissa Moore?

The four time world champion currently leads the World Surf League in points. Her toughest competition in Tokyo will be a pair of Australians in Sally Fitzgibbons and Stephanie Gilmore.

Gilmore is the winningest woman in the history of surfing with seven world championships. Yet, Gilmore is in 5th place overall for the WSL standings which is well behind Moore.

Right now, there’s no better surfer in women’s competition than Moore. At just 28 years old, Moore is also already a member of the Hall of Fame.

Sports betting sites have Moore listed as the betting favorite to win the surfing gold medal at +275 odds. Sally Fitzgibbons is the second odds on favorite at +450 and Stephanie Gilmore is 5th at +650 odds. American Caroline Marks (+500) has the potential to medal as well.

Nyjah Huston – Skateboarding

Huston is the most successful street skater in the history of competition and it’s not even up for debate. He’s a 12-time X Games gold medalist and ranked #1 in the world.

Nyjah is also the consensus choice by pundits, peers and fans to win the gold medal in Tokyo as street skateboarding will make its Olympic debut.

Surprisingly, online betting sites aren’t as emphatic about Huston winning the gold as everyone else is. Oddsmakers have him listed at -110 to win the gold with Yuto Horigome of Japan behind Nyjah at +185.

It’s rather remarkable that you can get the GOAT of street skating for just -110 odds. That’s a phenomenal value which makes Huston one of the best American athletes to wager on in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics.

Rick Rockwell

As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...

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