David Samson: IOC needs to demonstrate leadership and postpone the Olympics, says it is irresponsible not to

A veteran member of the International Olympic Committee, Dick Pound, came forward and said the Olympics will be canceled, though no official announcement has been made. International Olympic Committee vice president Anita DeFrantz disputed these claims, saying if a decision has been made she does not know of it. 

David Samson went on his podcast “Nothing Personal with David Samson” and shared his thoughts on the situation.

“We’ve been saying it from the beginning. The Olympics are going to be postponed, it’s not even a question,” he said. 

What he wanted to talk about was not the claims of it being canceled, he says that is inevitable, but about how the IOC has felt the pressure from athletes and countries. 

“It took Team Canada and the USA swimmers, Norway, country by country, sport by sport to talk to the IOC and say ‘No we will not go to Tokyo. Postpone it. We cannot train,'” commenting on the fact that many countries have announced if the Olympics do go on, they will not be participating.

He does not need details of exactly when it will be, how hotels and broadcasting networks will alter things to ensure they are prepared, he just wants a decision. “All we needed was leadership. Give me details when you have them. Postpone suspend halt your season, I don’t need the details of when it’s gonna start, you’ll give them to me later when you have them,” Samson said.

“It is not in the best interest of a country to bring in people from all over the world this close to a pandemic, which by the way may not be over by the middle of July,” Samson says, citing that with things still so unknown and the virus spreading, it’s careless to keep the athletes waiting on the news.

“Why is it that it took that stone to become an avalanche to cause the IOC not even to officially postpone,” he said, adding that the committee said they will wait four weeks and then decide. 

“I cannot explain to you how irresponsible it is for the IOC to come out and say we’re gonna wait four weeks and then decide,” he said. “Because what’s going on in those four weeks is that athletes from around the world are trying to figure out how to train.”

He worries about athletes breaking quarantine to train, since they have prepared and waited their entire lives for this. 

Looking at the bigger picture, the podcast host says, “And guess what? It sucks … but you know what, it pales in comparison to what people are going through who are getting laid off.”

Samson reflects on the situation being bigger than sports and says he is thinking of everyone impacted by the pandemic.

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