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The Minnesota athletes and events to watch during the Olympic games

More than a dozen Minnesota athletes will compete in the Olympics this year.
Credit: KARE-11 News

MINNEAPOLIS — Here we are, the Olympics are finally here.

Better late than never, right?

Get ready for two and a half weeks of international sports competition, but before you grab your popcorn and hit the couch, remember these games are happening halfway around the world.

"It's 14 hours, they're 14 hours ahead of us,” KARE-11 Olympics correspondent Dave Schwartz says.

That means most of the biggest events will be held at odd hours of the day, like very early in the morning, or late at night.

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That's why our very own Dave Schwartz will be working overnights during the Olympics.

"It is kind of a different thing,” Schwartz says. “During the Winter Olympics, it kind of showed that people will go to where the sports are and when they are. I mean, when the curling gold medal match happened people were watching curling at two o’clock in the morning because they wanted to see it.”

But if you're not a morning person don't worry, NBC will rebroadcast most of the major events later that same day in prime time.

"It won’t be difficult to watch the games this year because there are so many options. However, trying to not find out about the events if you don't want to, that's going to be the real challenge. You're going to need to walk through your day with your fingers in your ears and not looking at your phone, so you don't find out what happened,” Schwartz laughs.

Some of Dave's top picks for can't miss events include, men's and women's gymnastics, men’s basketball, with Team USA up against some tough competition this year, and also men’s and women’s swimming.

He's also excited to watch more than a dozen Minnesota athletes who will be competing in a wide variety of events, from Kyra Condie in climbing, to Lara Dallman-Weiss in sailing.

The women's gymnastics team also features two Minnesota athletes, Sunisa Lee of Saint Paul and Grace McCallum of Isanti.

"There are a lot of exciting Minnesotans to watch. Me personally, I'm very excited to watch Gable Steveson, the wrestler. He has absolutely dominated every single level he has been at,” Schwartz says.

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And with COVID concerns lingering in the background, Schwartz says fans and athletes will have to be flexible and patient during these Olympic games.

"It's different but it always is different and that's kind of the Olympics. You just never really know what you're going to get."