By Katia Hetter, 11/09/2012, www.cnn.com
Professional water polo player Tony Azevedo, who serves as captain of the men’s U.S. National Water Polo Team and has competed in three Olympics, travels more than 90 days a year.
Azevedo plays for a Croatian team during the professional water polo season (from August through May), flying commercial all over Europe. During the summer, he trains with Team USA and travels around the world for tournaments.
“The only equipment we need to take are caps, and the team usually takes these (or gives them to the youngest team members to transport),” he wrote in an e-mail from the road. “We are all in charge of bringing our own robes, sandals, suits and any other gear we need.”
“I wear my Intelliskin shirt and pants to help with posture and circulation, and then any team gear that I have chosen for the trip (as captain),” writes Azevedo, who doesn’t check his baggage. He also makes sure to bring his fully loaded iPad, headphones and a neck pillow.
From PETA Online7/25/2012, www.peta.org
U.S. Olympic water polo captain Tony Azevedo has always considered himself a “dog person” and never really considered adopting a cat—that is, until he saved a cat’s life. For the last two years, Azevedo has lived in Montenegro playing professional water polo. He says one of the first things that he noticed about the area is how many stray animals there are, especially cats. While there, he and his fellow polo players took to the animals and grew to love them, but they knew that it was only temporary care—as traveling athletes, they couldn’t take the animals on the road.
By Ryan Karpusiewicz, 7/25/2012, www.petside.com
At the end of this week, Team USA will storm London, vying for the top medal count in the 2012 Olympic Games. When the Games begin, Olympic water polo player Tony Azevedo will join in the team’s quest for gold.
Azevedo is currently the captain of the US National Team, and has achieved a high degree of success in the water. Considered to be one of the best American water polo players in recent memory, Azevedo is gearing up for his second Olymipcs. But his success isn’t just rooted in his special athletic ability. Out of the pool, Azevedo is an avid animal lover with pets of his own at home. In an effort to capture the animal loving spirit of the Olympians representing the USA, we sat down with Tony to learn more about him and his pets.
We are finally settled down in the Village and ready for the Games. The Village is great—I have a nice big room with a view. The food at the dining hall is amazing and divided up into different categories including British, African, Mediterranean, Italian, Asian & Indian.
We have also been through outfitting, and I have to say that this is the best gear we have ever received: four bags full of 28 Nike and Ralph Lauren sweatshirts, 18 T-shirts, nine pairs of shorts, seven pairs of sweatpants, five pairs of shoes, one pair of sandals and another P&G bag full of any necessity item you could ever think of. It took us five hours just to be assigned all of our stuff!
We had our first training in the competition pool at the Official Stadium, but then we headed to Varazdin, Croatia because we needed more pool time than we could get in London. Varazdin is a really small town, and we just concentrated on training hard with the Croatians for five full practices—we beat them in some games and lost others.
After Croatia, we hopped on a bus to Budapest, Hungary, where we had three trainings with the reigning Gold Medalists. We played well and it was a good time to refocus and prepare ourselves before our first competition games. Budapest is famous for its spas, so our team spent the final day doing an “Olympic Spa”, which entails hitting up every pool and steam/sauna room available. The true test was who could do a 10 minute steam session, then a 15 minute cold bath, and then go back to the sauna and back to the cold bath again!
Now we are back in London, and to sum it up, we are recovered and ready to play. We took the morning off today and have our first scrimmage in the competition pool tomorrow. It is always good to get a feel for the venue and play a little in the official pool before it counts. We are not used to playing in such a big arena so we even need to adjust to simple things like the lighting.
Tonight we have a team dinner with just the players. This is a tradition that began in Beijing and that we have repeated every year since. The goal is to separate from the staff and the Olympic chaos and open up amongst ourselves. We are going to an old Pub called The Gun in Stratford that is supposed to have great traditional British food.
I will write another update soon with more news and also send along some pictures. Thanks to everyone for their support—we’re almost there!
Widely considered one of the world’s top water polo players, Tony Azevedo takes a break from training to talk with PCMag about his favorite apps, waterproof tech, and the upcoming Olympic Games.
Many people have never been to the gym, let alone the Olympic Games. But Tony Azevedo, captain of the USA’s National Men’s Water Polo Team, is heading to London to compete in his fourth. Azevedo has a water polo résumé that would make any landlubber gasp for air.
He joined Team USA in 1998 and played in his first Games at age 18 in the 2000 Sydney Olympics. He went on to play for Stanford University, where he led his team to two NCAA championships (2001, 2002). At the 2004 Olympics in Athens, the attacker led Team USA with 15 goals. Finally, at the 2008 Games in Beijing, his 17 goals helped Team USA win a silver medal, its first Olympic medal in 20 years.
July 18, 2012 5:30 PM, CBS Los Angeles Online
THOUSAND OAKS (CBS) – Long Beach’s Tony Azevedo, known as the Michael Jordan of his sport, scored 17 goals in the Beijing games to lead the U.S. to a impressive silver medal-finish. The heart of that team, a veteran group filled with world-class players, is back and hungry for gold.
This team, who trains at Cal Lutheran University in Thousand Oaks, has done something no other Olympic water polo team has done which is to forgo lucrative contracts overseas in order to train together for 8 months. Last Olympics the team was together for only 3 months. They have put all the pressure on themselves by passing up all that money for chance at Olympic gold.
By Sam Borden, 7/13/2012, www.nytimes.com
Nicknames in sports are often subtle, a way for teammates to share an inside joke or longtime friends to remind a star where he came from.
With Tony Azevedo, however, there is no such intricacy: Azevedo, at times, has been known as the Savior in the water polo community because, quite simply, that is what he is supposed to be.
Well, there’s one more week to go– this is our final week at home before we take off to London. I have been working hard to stay focused and contain my excitement for when we finally arrive at the Olympic Village.
Following our trip to Europe, we have been picking up our swimming and legs everyday as well as fine-tuning a lot of our tactics. Today started with 12 200′s all out and two hours of gym.
We leave for London on Monday the 16th and will spend two days going through processing, taking pictures, media stuff and finally moving into our apartments in the village. After that we head to Croatia and Hungary for five days in order to get some more pool time and play some practice matches before the Games begin.
The Games are over two weeks long, and we play from start to finish. If we are not careful, we could easily lose some form by not training enough. Since we play every other day, it is important to not taper and keep working throughout the Games. In the village we are only allotted two one-hour long pool sessions per day, so that is why we are going to Croatia and Hungary to get more training in before-hand.
In reality, I’m just happy that London is finally so close because it has been way too long since that last Gold Medal defeat. I have not stopped thinking about that day and will be 100% ready when this new opportunity arrives.
Team USA participated in the summer 2012 London Olympic Games from July 27th- Aug 12th. Tony led the team to a strong start winning the first three games, but the tournament ended in a disappointing finish.
Team USA was in an initial bracket with five other teams: Hungary, Montenegro, Serbia, Romania and Great Britain. The first game was against Montenegro, followed by Romania, Great Britain, Serbia and Hungary. (The other bracket consisted of Greece, Australia, Croatia, Italy, Kazakhstan and Spain).
The top four teams in each bracket advanced to the next round and played each other in the opposite order (so #1 from Bracket 1 played #4 from Bracket 2, #2 played #3 etc.). The top four results from this round moved on to the semifinals and finals of the medal round.
USA Men’s Water Polo Olympic Game Results
|7/29/2012||Preliminaries||vs. Montenegro||7:40 PM||
|7/31/2012||Preliminaries||vs. Romania||7:40 PM||
|8/2/2012||Preliminaries||vs. Great Britain||6:20 PM||
|8/4/2012||Preliminaries||vs. Serbia||7:40 PM||
|8/6/2012||Preliminaries||vs. Hungary||3:30 PM||
|8/8/2012||Quarterfinals||vs. Croatia||6:40 PM||
|8/10/2012||Semifinals||vs. Spain||2:30 PM||
|8/12/2012||FINALS (Men’s Classification 7th-8th Place)||vs. Australia||10:20 AM||
USA Men Open 2012 Olympic Games With 8-7 Win Over Montenegro
7/29/2012 12:00:00 AM
London, England – July 29 – The U.S. Olympic Men’s Water Polo Team opened up competition at the 2012 Olympic Games with an 8-7 win over Montenegro at the Water Polo Arena. Tony Azevedo (Long Beach, CA/Stanford/NYAC) scored what would prove to be the game winner with just :57 left in the match. Peter Varellas (Moraga, CA/Stanford/Olympic Club) spurred the offense with three goals while Merrill Moses (Palos Verdes, CA/Pepperdine/NYAC) did the job in net, posting 11 saves. The victory puts Team USA at 1-0 in Group B standings. They meet Romania in their next match on Tuesday, July 31 at 7:40pm local time (2:40pm est/11:40am pst).
Scoring - Scoresheet
- USA 8 (1, 3, 2, 2) P. Varellas 3, T. Azevedo 1, A. Wright 1, L. Beaubien 1, R. Bailey 1, T. Hutten 1
- MNE 7 (1, 1, 2, 3) A. Ivovic 3, D. Brguljan 1, V. Paskovic 1, A. Radovic 1, V. Gojkovic 1
- Saves – USA – M. Moses 11 – MNE – M. Scepanovic 4, D. Sefik 2
- 6×5 – USA – 2/6 MNE – 2/8
- Penalties – USA 0/0 – MNE – 0/0
USA Men Top Romania 10-8 For Second Straight Win At 2012 Olympic Games
7/31/2012 12:00:00 AM
London, England – July 31 – The U.S. Olympic Men’s Water Polo battled back from a first half deficit to down Romania 10-8 in preliminary play. The win moves Team USA to 2-0 in Group B as they ready for a match with Great Britain on Thursday evening. Ryan Bailey (Long Beach, CA/UC-Irvine/Newport WPF) and Peter Varellas (Moraga, CA/Stanford/Olympic Club) each scored three goals on offense while Merrill Moses (Palos Verdes, CA/Pepperdine/NYAC) posted 12 saves in the victory. Bailey’s second effort goal off a rebound of his own miss with just :50 to play sealed the deal for Team USA. The United States next match against Great Britain is set for 7:40pm local time/2:40pm est/11:40am pst. The match will air live on NBC on the east coast and on delay on the west coast at 12:20pm.
Scoring - Scoresheet
- USA 10 (3, 1, 3, 3) P. Varellas 3, R. Bailey 3, A. Wright 2, J. Mann 1, L. Beaubien 1
- ROU 8 (3, 2, 0, 3) C. Radu 4, A. Iosep 1, R. Georgescu 1, A. Ghiban 1, K. Kadar 1
- Saves – USA – M. Moses 12 – ROU – Stoenescu 8
- 6×5 – USA – 5/13 – ROU – 3/12
- Penalties – USA 0/0 – ROU 0/0