Toyota won’t be airing any Olympic-themed advertisements on Japanese television during the Tokyo Games, despite being one of the International Olympic Committee’s top corporate sponsors.
The extraordinary decision by the country’s top automaker underlines how polarizing the Games have become in Japan as COVID-19 infections rise ahead of Friday’s opening ceremony.
“There are many issues with these Games that are proving difficult to be understood,” Toyota’s chief communications officer, Jun Nagata, told reporters Monday.
CEO Akio Toyoda, the company founder’s grandson, will be skipping the opening ceremony. That’s despite about 200 athletes taking part in the Olympics and Paralympics who are affiliated with Toyota, including swimmer Takeshi Kawamoto and softball player Miu Goto.
Nagata said the company will continue to support its athletes.
Pandemic of bad marketing
Being a corporate sponsor for the Olympics is usually all about using the Games as a platform to enhance the brand. But being linked with a pandemic-era Games may be viewed by some as a potential marketing problem.
Bring on the cheers
Find live streams, must-watch video highlights, breaking news and more in one perfect Olympic Games package. Following Team Canada has never been easier or more exciting.
Toyota Motor Corp. signed on as a worldwide Olympic sponsor in 2015, in an eight-year deal reportedly worth nearly $1 billion US, becoming the first car company to join the IOC’s top-tier marketing program.
The sponsorship, which started globally in 2017, runs through the 2024 Olympics, covering three consecutive Olympics in Asia, including the Tokyo Games.
The Tokyo Olympics, already delayed by a year, are going ahead despite the Japanese capital being under a state of emergency.
It’s already virtually a made-for-TV Olympics with most events, including the opening ceremony, going ahead without fans in the venues. Some dignitaries, such as IOC president Thomas Bach and Emperor Naruhito, are likely to attend.
We should never have gotten the Games– Japanese factory worker Motoyuki Niitsuma
Toyota is one of the most trusted brands in Japan. The maker of the Prius hybrid and Lexus luxury models prides itself on its quality controls, with its “just in time” super-efficient production methods praised and emulated around the world.
Public opinion surveys reflect widespread concern among Japanese people about having tens of thousands of Olympic participants enter the country during a pandemic.
Motoyuki Niitsuma, a manufacturing plant worker who was banging on a bucket in a recent Tokyo protest against the Olympics, said he didn’t like the idea of cheering for the national team, and the pandemic has made that message clear.
“The time to compete is over. Now is the time to co-operate,” he said. “We should never have gotten the Games.”
Montreal Canadiens select Joe Vrbetic with 214th pick – Habs Eyes on the Prize
After a very long day, the Montreal Canadiens final picks are finally upon us, with 214th overall being up first. The Habs acquired this pick after trading out of an earlier round, and with this pick the team selected Joe Vrbetic from OHL’s North Bay Battalion.
Unfortunately like many other prospects in the OHL, Vrbetic was not able to play this year due to the Covid pandemic. In his last full season he posted a 4.23 goals against, an .881 save percentage along with a 14-25-1 record on a dreadful North Bay team that won just 17 out of 62 games.
The Habs have the penultimate pick in the draft at 223rd overall this year coming up.
Tokyo Olympics: Michael Woods was milliseconds away from podium finish in thrilling road race – The Globe and Mail
Latest Olympic updates
OLYMPIC EVENTS FOR JULY 24
- Soccer: Canada’s women’s soccer team won 2-1 over their Chilean opponents, with both goals supplied by Janine Beckie. This victory brings the team one step closer to securing a spot in the quarter-finals. Canada will next face off against Britain on Tuesday.
- Cycling: Michael Woods of Ottawa came close to becoming Canada’s first medal finish after placing fifth in the men’s road race, milliseconds away from the podium. Woods pushed his chase group forward, just trailing behind eventual gold-medal winner Richard Carapaz of Ecuador. Woods finished just one minute and seven seconds behind Carapaz.
- Judo: Japan’s Naohisa Takato won gold in the men’s under 60 kilogram competition for judo, with Japan’s Funa Tonaki securing silver in the women’s under 48 kilogram category. Japan, the birthplace of judo, holds more medals in the sport than any other country. With 86 medals in total, one in five of Japan’s Olympic medals are in judo.
- Tennis: Canadian lefthander Leylah Fernandez won her opening match against Ukraine’s Dayana Yastremska, putting her through to the second round. Fernandez, an 18-year old from Montreal, won her sets in after just over two hours on a hot Tokyo afternoon.
- Beach volleyball: Canada’s Melissa Humana-Paredes and Sarah Pavan beat Katja Stam and Raisa Schoon of the Netherlands 2-0 on the first day of beach volleyball at the Olympics. The pair have played together for five years and qualified for the Olympics thanks to their 2019 World Championships win. Their next game is on Monday against Germany.
- Gymnastics: After a fall on the horizontal bars, Japan’s “King Kohei” Uchimura is out of the Olympics. The 32-year old Uchimura is considered one of the best male gymnasts of all time. For two full Olympic cycles, Uchimura had won every competition he entered. He holds seven Olympic medals and became the first man in 44 years to win back-to-back individual all-around Olympic golds at the Rio 2016 Games.
OFF THE FIELD
- Refugees: Three athletes competing for the Refugee Olympic team will attend Sheridan College in Ontario this fall as part of the first cohort of a new athletic stream of the Student Refugee Program. Rose Nathike Likonyen, Paulo Amotun Lokoro and James Nyang Chiengjiek fled South Sudan as children and grew up in the Kakuma refugee camp in Kenya where they currently live.
- Dressage: “He’s definitely here with us,” Jamie Kellock said of her late brother, Jonathan. Jamie is attending the Tokyo Olympics as a groom while her sister Lindsay makes her Team Canada debut in dressage. Their brother died of a brain tumour just seven months ago. He was a ski racer and coach in Whistler, B.C. before he passed away at 29.
- New parents: Officials from the Tokyo Olympics said they have tried to find solutions for new parents who want to bring their young children to Tokyo while they compete. The issue was raised when Spanish synchronized swimmer Ona Carbonell announced on Instagram that she had to travel to Tokyo without her husband and breastfeeding infant son because they would not have been allowed to quarantine together in the Olympic village.
Situation in Tokyo, by numbers
WHAT IS THE OLYMPIC MEDAL TALLY IN TOKYO SO FAR?
So far, China has the most gold medals, two, followed by Japan, Korea, Thailand, Iran, Ecuador, Kosovo, Italy with one gold each. Canada has no medals yet.
JAPAN’S LATEST COVID-19 DATA
WHAT TIME IS IT IN TOKYO RIGHT NOW?
Olympic highlights for July 24
Canadian athletes at Tokyo Olympics in photos
Opinion: At the Tokyo Olympics, Michael Woods was a hair’s breadth away from being the stuff of national lore
Michael Woods came milliseconds away from the podium during the men’s road race, and milliseconds away from forever capturing the hearts and minds of Canadians. Despite the near miss, Woods’ performance was captivating. Columnist Cathal Kelly writes, “When he is up in the saddle and headed to vertical, Woods is something to watch. He’s like a piston with arms.”
Penny Oleksiak, women’s swimming team face Olympic-sized expectations in Tokyo
The Canadian women’s swimming team won big at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games, bringing home six medals. They surprised Canada, the world, and even themselves. Fast forward to today’s Tokyo Olympic Games, and Canada wants them to do it all over again. At the centre of the team is Penny Oleksiak, who spearheaded Rio’s medal captures despite being just 16 at the time. She arrives in Tokyo with massive expectations on her shoulders.
Taiwan competes as ‘Chinese Taipei’, broadcaster jumps through hoops to appease China
Nathan VanderKlippe, currently reporting from Tokyo, shares musings about the geopolitics present at the Olympic Games. The International Olympic Committee does not allow Taiwan – a self-governed nation – to compete under its own name, instead appearing as Chinese Taipei under a special flag. Online streaming service Tencent interrupted its coverage of the opening ceremony to ensure Chinese viewers didn’t have to see the Taiwanese athletes participate in the parade.
Tokyo Olympic events to watch tomorrow, July 25
- Swimming: Keep an eye out for Kylie Masse in the women’s 100-metre backstroke and 14-year-old Summer McIntosh of Toronto in the women’s 400-metre freestyle events.
- Judo: Elimination rounds are scheduled for 10 p.m. (ET) for the women’s 57-kilogram, the weight category for Jessica Klimkait of Team Canada.
- Diving: Canada will compete in the women’s three-metre synchronized springboard, represented by the veteran Olympian Jennifer Abel alongside Melissa Citrini-Beaulieu, who is making her Olympic debut this year.
- Taekwondo: In the women’s 57-kilogram weight class, Skylar Park is hoping to bring home Canada’s first medal in taekwondo since the 20018 Beijing Olympics. She topped the podium in the sport at the Pan Am Games this year.
- Cycling: Leah Kirchmann of Winnipeg, Karol-Ann Canuel of Amos, Que., and Alison Jackson of Vermilion, Alta are competing in the women’s road race alongside 64 other competitors. The race kicks off in Tokyo and brings the cyclists 137 kilometres to the foothills of Mount Fuji.
Check the full Olympic schedule for the latest event times and competitors.
The Tokyo Olympics: Essential reads
What athletes and teams should Canadians look out for? Consult our guide.
How did Canada’s swimmers use data to get stronger? Grant Robertson explains.
2021 NHL Draft Tracker: Round 1 picks, notes; Results for Rounds 2-7 – NHL
The 2021 NHL Draft began as expected: with the Sabres selecting Owen Power first overall. From there, we saw surprises, including one that required a team statement.
With Round 1 complete on Friday, follow along on PHT for results from Rounds 2-7.
2021 NHL Draft
1. Buffalo Sabres — Owen Power, D, Michigan (NCAA)
“In truth, he is a unique player, combining amazing size, strong skating, a big shot, great vision, the ability (if not necessarily the proclivity) to play a dominating physical game.” Ryan Wagman, McKeen’s Hockey
2. Seattle Kraken — Matthew Beniers, C, Michigan (NCAA)
It’s probably not fair to compare Beniers to Ron Francis, the Kraken GM who drafted him. That will be tough to avoid, though, because Beniers brings the sort of two-way game that’s expected to translate smoothly to the NHL.
Want more on Beniers, and the Kraken making their first-ever draft pick at No. 2? Click here.
3. Anaheim Ducks — Mason McTavish, C, Peterborough (OHL)
“The Ducks desperately need offensive players, and in McTavish they get high-end skill blended with size and strength through the middle. And McTavish was an impact player during his time in the Swiss League, playing with and against older, more physically developed competition.” — NHL.com’s Adam Kimelman.
4. New Jersey Devils — Luke Hughes, D, USA U-18 (USNTDP)
Doesn’t get much better than keeping brothers together, does it? Jack Hughes certainly looked elated that the Devils drafted Luke Hughes fourth overall, that’s for sure.
— NHL GIFs (@NHLGIFs) July 24, 2021
5. Columbus Blue Jackets — Kent Johnson, C, Michigan (NCAA)
“His puck skills are sublime, even if he needs to simplify his game to manage his risk taking better.” Ryan Wagman, McKeen’s Hockey
A historic night:
— Michigan Athletics 〽️ (@UMichAthletics) July 24, 2021
6. Detroit Red Wings — Simon Edvinsson, D, Frolunda (SHL)
Edvinsson ranks as one of the 2021 NHL Draft’s most interesting prospects, as he was projected to fall in many spots. No doubt, size is a big selling point for the big Swedish defenseman.
” (Edvinsson) … combines incredible skating and puck skills in a supersized frame, a talent the likes of which this team has nothing like. He is raw, and likely needs at least two more years of development, but the upside is a star,” Ryan Wagman, McKeen’s Hockey
7. San Jose Sharks — William Eklund, LW, Djurgarden (SHL)
People started to clamor for Eklund pretty quickly.
We’ve reached the point of the draft where every pick from this point forward that is not William Eklund will be met with a large scoff from me.
— Jesse Marshall (@jmarshfof) July 24, 2021
Well, the fall didn’t last too long? Depends upon who you ask, perhaps. (Ryan Wagman mock-drafted Eklund at seven.)
8. Los Angeles Kings – Brandt Clarke, D, Barrie (OHL)
” … In a sentence, Clarke projects as a second or third defenseman who can be on a top NHL power-play unit but may not be able to face top opponents defensively.” – Corey Pronman, The Athletic (sub required).
9. Arizona Coyotes (from VAN) — Dylan Guenther, RW, Edmonton (WHL)
” … He becomes a massive component of Arizona’s next rebuild. I see a lot about his game that translates to the pros and you can see him finishing plays from Clayton Keller, Barrett Hayton and Victor Soderstrom for many years, and driving a line with his great two-way play. He was my No. 2 ranked prospect,” – Corey Pronman, The Athletic (sub required).
10. Ottawa Senators — Tyler Boucher, RW, USA U-18 (USNTDP)
“In a sentence, Boucher projects as a bottom-six NHL winger who will be one of the most physical players in a game.” Corey Pronman, The Athletic (sub required).
*11. Forfeited pick*
12. Columbus Blue Jackets (from CHI) — Cole Sillinger, C, Sioux Falls (USHL)
“Sillinger stands out for his high-end hockey IQ, excellent vision, playmaking ability, an NHL-ready shot and the ability to control the game with the puck on his stick.” – NHL.com’s Adam Kimelman.
13. Calgary Flames — Matthew Coronato, RW, Chicago (USHL)
“Coronato is a dominant offensive force who blends top-end goal scoring, strong skating and a physical approach, similar to United States Hockey Hall of Fame forward John LeClair. He was nicknamed “Bison” because of the way he goes hard to the net in the offensive zone.” – NHL.com’s Adam Kimelman.
14. Buffalo Sabres (from PHI) — Isak Rosen, RW, Leksands IF (SHL)
“Isak Rosen has a full toolshed of high-end offensive elements. Being forced to play in the SHL after the Swedish junior leagues were cancelled didn’t help his stat page, but was a great learning experience, which his seven goals in seven games at the U18s illustrated.” – Ryan Wagman, McKeen’s Hockey
15. Detroit Red Wings (from DAL) — Sebastian Cossa, G, Edmonton (WHL)
Heading into the 2021 NHL Draft, people wondered if as many as two goalies could go in the top 10. There was also debate between Cossa or Jesper Wallstedt as the first goalie to go in the 2021 NHL Draft. Ultimately, the Red Wings traded up to land a big goalie. They’ve been aggressive attempting to improve at net, as Cossa is the prospect to pair with prime-age goalie Alex Nedeljkovic.
16. NY Rangers — Brennan Othmann, LW, Flint (OHL)
17. St. Louis Blues — Zachary Bolduc, C, Rimouski (QMJHL)
18. Winnipeg Jets – Chaz Lucius, C, USA U-18 (USNTDP)
19. Nashville Predators — Fedor Svechkov, C, Togliatti (VHL)
20. Minnesota Wild (from EDM) – Jesper Wallstedt, G, Lulea (SHL)
Jesper Wallstedt was a league-average goalie who played 22 games in the SHL, one of the best leagues in the world. As a draft-eligible player.
That’s unprecedented this century for a 17-year-old.
Getting him for the cost of a 3rd in a weak draft is nice work by Judd Brackett
— Tony of the USS 10KRinks.com (@OhHiTony) July 24, 2021
21. Boston Bruins — Fabian Lysell, RW, Lulea (SHL)
The Bruins inject some much-needed skill in their prospect pool with a guy like Fabian Lysell. His highlight reel is … fun to watch: pic.twitter.com/ySovl7mxbu
— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) July 24, 2021
22. Edmonton Oilers (from MIN) — Xavier Bourgault, C, Shawinigan (QMJHL)
23. Dallas Stars (Detroit; WSH) — Wyatt Johnston, C, Windsor (OHL)
24. Florida Panthers — Mackie Samoskevich, RW, Chicago (USHL)
25. Columbus Blue Jackets (from TOR) — Corson Ceulemans, D, Brooks (AJHL)
26. Minnesota Wild (from PIT) — Carson Lambos, D, Winnipeg (WHL)
27. Nashville Predators (from CAR) — Zachary L’Heureux, LW, Halifax (QMJHL)
28. Colorado Avalanche — Oskar Olausson, RW, HV71 (SHL)
29. New Jersey Devils (from NYI) — Chase Stillman, RW, Sudbury (OHL)
30. Vegas Golden Knights — Zach Dean, C, Gatineau (QMJHL)
31. Montreal Canadiens — Logan Mailloux, D, London (OHL)
32. Chicago Blackhawks (from TBL via CBJ) — Nolan Allan, D, Prince Albert (WHL)
Pick 11 – The NHL directed the forfeiture of this pick in sanctions against the Arizona Coyotes announced Aug. 26, 2020.
Also, here’s the complete 2021 NHL Draft order for rounds 2-7:
33. Buffalo Sabres: Prokhor Poltapov, LW, CSKA-2 (MHL)
34. Anaheim Ducks: Olen Zellweger, D, Everett (WHL)
35. Seattle Kraken: Ryker Evans, D, Regina (WHL)
36. Detroit Red Wings: Shai Buium, D, Sioux City (USHL)
37. Arizona Coyotes: Josh Doan, RW, Chicago (USHL)
38. Vegas Golden Knights: Daniil Chayka, D, CSKA (Russia)
39. Ottawa Senators: Zack Ostapchuk, C, Vancouver (WHL)
40. Carolina Hurricanes: Scott Morrow, D, Shattuck St. Mary’s (High MN)
41. Vancouver Canucks: Danila Klimovich, RW, Minsk Zubry (Belarus 2)
42. Los Angeles Kings: Francesco Pinelli, C, Kitchener (OHL)
43. Arizona Coyotes: Ilya Fedotov, LW, Nizhny Novgorod 2 (Russia Jr.)
44. Columbus (from CHI)
48. Detroit (from NYR)
49. Los Angeles (from STL via BUF and VGK)
52. NY Islanders (from DET via EDM)
53. Buffalo (from BOS)
60. Arizona (from NYI via COL)
61. Colorado (from NJD via NYI)
62. Chicago (from VGK)
64. Montreal (from TBL)
65. NY Rangers (from BUF)
68. New Jersey
71. San Jose
72. Los Angeles
73. Dallas (from VAN)
75. Washington (from ARI via NJD)
76. Montreal (from CHI)
80. NY Rangers
81. St. Louis
84. Calgary (from EDM)
87. Montreal (from WSH via SJS)
88. Buffalo (from FLA)
89. Los Angeles (from TOR)
90. Minnesota (from PIT via SJS)
93. NY Islanders
94. Carolina (from DET via VGK)
95. Buffalo (from MTL)
96. Tampa Bay
100. New Jersey
103. San Jose
104. NY Rangers (from LAK)
105. Chicago (from VAN)
106. NY Rangers (from OTT)
109. Los Angeles (from CGY)
112. NY Rangers
113. Montreal (from STL)
114. Vegas (from WPG)
121. San Jose (from TOR)
122. Arizona (from PIT)
124. Nashville (from COL via OTT)
125. NY Islanders
126. Montreal (from VGK)
128. Detroit (from TBL)
129. New Jersey (from BUF)
132. Columbus (from NJD)
135. San Jose
136. Los Angeles
138. Detroit (from OTT via MTL)
140. Vancouver (from CHI)
142. Montreal (from PHI)
144. NY Rangers
145. St. Louis
148. Anaheim (from EDM via OTT)
155. Vegas (from CAR)
156. San Jose (from COL)
157. NY Islanders
158. Philadelphia (from VGK via WSH)
159. Buffalo (from MTL)
160. Tampa Bay
164. New Jersey
167. San Jose
168. Los Angeles
176. NY Rangers
177. St. Louis
178. Vancouver (from WPG)
186. Edmonton (from PIT)
188. Buffalo (from COL)
189. NY Islanders
192. Tampa Bay
194. Pittsburgh (from ANA)
196. Tampa Bay (from NJD)
198. St. Louis (from DET)
199. San Jose
200. Carolina (from LAK)
203. New Jersey (from ARI)
208. NY Rangers
209. Carolina (from STL)
210. Florida (from WPG)
211. Tampa Bay (from NSH)
215. Pittsburgh (from WSH)
216. Chicago (from FLA)
217. Boston (from TOR)
221. NY Islanders
224. Tampa Bay
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