Sports Olympics

The Pyeongchang Winter Olympics are underway. The Los Angeles Times will be providing live updates, analysis and features on the events and athletes from around the world. 

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Speedskater Shani Davis trashes coin toss that determined U.S. flagbearer in opening ceremony

U.S. speedskater Shani Davis tweeted that he has “no problem” that a coin toss determined that he won’t get to carry the American flag into the opening ceremony of the Pyeongchang Games.

Other parts of his tweet, however, suggested otherwise.

@TeamUSA dishonorably tossed a coin to decide its 2018 flag bearer. No problem. I can wait until 2022,” tweeted Davis, who added a Black History Month hashtag.

Davis was one of eight nominees to serve as the U.S. flagbearer. The eight winter sports federations vote to determine which athlete receives that honor. This year, Davis and luge veteran Erin Hamlin got four votes each.

A coin toss is the predetermined method of breaking such a tie. And Hamlin won the toss.

"Working hard and earning success is one thing, being acknowledged as a great representative and member of Team USA by fellow athletes -- many who I have been inspired by -- is above and beyond anything I've experienced," Hamlin said in a statement.

"It is definitely a privilege and honor to be the one to lead the team and will be a very special moment. I can't wait to share it with them all!"

Davis, 35, is a five-time Olympic qualifier. In 2006, he became the first African American athlete to win gold in an individual event at a Winter Olympics. Overall, he has won two gold and two silver Olympic medals.

Hamlin, 31, is a four-time Olympian and a bronze medal winner at the 2014 Sochi Games. She was the first American ever to medal in an Olympic luge singles event.

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