From the pool to the dance floor. Multiple sources tell Us Weekly that Ryan Lochte signed on for season 23 of Dancing With the Stars following his Rio robbery scandal, in which he said he “overexaggerated” his story about being robbed at gunpoint.
“Doing DWTS will be great for Ryan’s image!” an insider tells Us Weekly. "He will be able to show America that he’s a good guy who made a mistake. He’s still an Olympic champion! He will be great on the show."
The cast of celebrities for the upcoming season of the ABC dancing competition has not yet been announced and reps for the show never comment on casting rumors, but this season will likely include a few Olympic athletes.
As previously reported, Lochte, 32, and fellow U.S. swimmers Jack Conger, Jimmy Feigen and Gunnar Bentz told authorities and media that they were robbed at gunpoint after leaving a party in Rio de Janeiro. When police investigated the incident, they were unable to find any evidence that a robbery occurred. Lochte was given a chance to revise his comments during an interview with Matt Lauer, but he stood by his story.
After law enforcement reviewed surveillance footage, they found that the athletes had actually vandalized a gas station bathroom and the security guard pointed a gun at them while demanding payment for the damage. Lochte then admitted that he misled people with the story, saying, “I overexaggerated that story, and if I had never done that we wouldn’t be in this mess."
In the aftermath, Lochte lost several of his sponsors, including Speedo, Ralph Lauren, Airweave and Gentle Hair Removal. Forbes estimates that he could lose up to $10 million in endorsements because of the Rio scandal. The CEO of the U.S. Olympics Committee, Scott Blackmun, also told the Associated Press that the organization is looking into additional disciplinary action for the swimmers.
Dancing With the Stars returns to ABC on Monday, September 12.
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