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Former Stanford star Sue Bird, Eddy Alvarez to carry U.S. flags at Olympics’ opening ceremony


By DOUG FEINBERG | The Associated Press

Four-time Olympic women’s basketball gold medalist Sue Bird and baseball player Eddy Alvarez were chosen as U.S. flag bearers for the opening ceremony of the Olympics on Friday night.

Alvarez, who won a silver medal in speedskating at the 2014 Sochi Olympics, and Bird were chosen by a vote of fellow U.S. athletes. They are the first duo to share the honor of leading the delegation into the ceremony.

Bird is the second U.S. women’s basketball player to carry the flag, joining current coach Dawn Staley, who did it at the 2004 Games in Athens. Those were the first that Bird participated in.

“It’s an incredible honor to be selected the flag bearer for Team USA,” Bird said. “I know what that means, because I got to witness Dawn Staley go through it when she was selected in 2004. It’s an honor that is bigger than the moment in that you’ve been selected by your fellow Team USA athletes to represent the entire delegation, and it will last forever.”

Bird will be trying to win an unprecedented fifth gold medal with teammate Diana Taurasi, which would give them the most in golds in women’s basketball history.


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