Joker’s wild: Saunders dons mask before shot put at Olympics

Jul 29, 2021, 7:14 PM | Updated: Jul 30, 2021, 8:05 am

TOKYO (AP) — They call her “The Hulk.” On Friday, she looked more like “The Joker.”

Talk about an intimidating game face.

Shot putter Raven Saunders, aka “The Hulk,” showed up at the Olympics wearing a virus-protection mask that made her look like “The Joker,” from “Batman” fame. She dyed her hair half green and half purple to match the costume, too.

All that superhero/supervillain energy led to a throw of 19.22 meters (a shade over 63 feet), which was good enough for third in the qualifying round and a ticket into Sunday’s final.

“I’m like literally the greatest person,” Saunders cracked. “But during competitions, I don’t like anybody.”

If the Olympics allow it, Saunders promises something even more outlandish for the medals round.

She uses it as an icebreaker of sorts.

“One of my things is like, everyone during the shot put, and I don’t know why, people are always smiling and talking. That’s not really me,” Saunders explained. “This is my way of like, being friendly I guess?”

She wore something similar at the U.S. Olympic trials. That one wasn’t virus proof. This one is. Sometimes, she will wear it when she’s out and about. It’s definitely an attention grabber.

“I get looks. I get lots of looks,” Saunders said. “I don’t know if people were intending it or thinking I was crazy, but I get lots of looks.”

___

More AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/2020-tokyo-olympics and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

England's Phil Foden waves towards the fans after scoring his side's second goal during the World C...
Associated Press

England bonds over cards ahead of Senegal World Cup clash

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — For a nation that has frequently flattered to deceive at soccer’s major tournaments, a card game that relies on the art of deception is strengthening the bond among England’s players ahead of their match against Senegal in the World Cup round of 16. Werewolf, a game of roleplay and deduction, has […]
1 day ago
FILE - A partial view of the Stadium 974 prior to the start of the World Cup group G soccer match b...
Associated Press

Built to disappear: World Cup stadium 974

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Of the seven stadiums Qatar built for the World Cup, one will disappear after the tournament. That’s what the games’ organizers have said about Stadium 974 in Doha — a port-side structure with more than 40,000 seats partially built from recycled shipping containers and steel. Qatar says the stadium will be […]
1 day ago
France's Kylian Mbappe plays during the World Cup group D soccer match between Tunisia and France a...
Associated Press

Messi, Mbappé and co: The AP’s World Cup team of group stage

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Writers covering the World Cup for The Associated Press have chosen their standout players at the tournament so far to form a best team of the group stage. Spoiler alert: Lionel Messi and Kylian Mbappé are in there, along with surprise names who have helped to cause some of the many […]
1 day ago
Golden State Warriors guard Jordan Poole (3) changes direction while defended by Chicago Bulls forw...
Associated Press

Poole scores 30 points with seven 3s off bench, Warriors win

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Draymond Green is healthy and back to his elite level of doing a bit of everything on both ends, even leading the offense with the second unit. He just missed his first triple-double of the season. Green is regularly knocking down 3-pointers, too. Jordan Poole also found his groove from beyond […]
1 day ago
Indiana Pacers guard Andrew Nembhard, left, guards against Utah Jazz guard Jordan Clarkson (00) dur...
Associated Press

Markkanen, Kessler help Jazz overwhelm Pacers 139-119

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Lauri Markkanen had 24 points and 13 rebounds to lead the Utah Jazz to a 139-119 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Friday night. Rookie center Walker Kessler scored a career-high 20 points on 7-of-7 shooting and grabbed 11 rebounds for Utah. Jordan Clarkson had 19 points and Collin Sexton […]
1 day ago
San Diego State forward Jaedon LeDee (13) shoots over Occidental forward Bernard Cassidy (34) durin...
Associated Press

Seiko, No. 24 San Diego St beat Division III Occidental

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Adam Seiko scored 20 points, including six 3s, to lead No. 24 San Diego State over Division III Occidental 95-57 on Friday night. The Aztecs (6-2) hit 19 of 37 shots from 3-point range. They won their second in a row after consecutive defeats to Arizona and Arkansas at the Maui […]
1 day ago
Joker’s wild: Saunders dons mask before shot put at Olympics