Speedskater Shani Davis Boycotts Winter Olympics' Opening Ceremony Over Flag Bearer Controversy


Davis was denied the honor in a coin toss with luger Erin Hamlin.

Not long after the Olympic torch's official lighting, the Pyeonchang, South Korea, Winter Games has already been struck by controversy. 

American speedskater Shani Davis boycotted the Opening ceremonies because he was upset that he wasn't chosen to carry the flag, and believed the USOC acted dishonorably. 

The four-time Olympian lost a coin toss for the honor to luger Erin Hamlin.

In a tweet, Davis called the coin toss "dishonorable" and refused to walk with the rest of Team USA.

“I am an American and when I won the 1000m in 2010 I became the first American to 2-peat in that event. @TeamUSA dishonorably tossed a coin to decide its 2018 flag bearer. No problem. I can wait until 2022. #BlackHistoryMonth2018 #PyeongChang2018,” he tweeted. 

It was a cold 28 degrees in the South Korean city but American athletes were cozy in their official Team USA jackets designed by Ralph Lauren. The jacket is specially designed with a heating panel in the back, which is powered by a battery pack. 

The athletes at the opening ceremony also got jeans, a sweater, wool hats and big suede gloves from the fashion icon. 

Vice President Mike Pence watched the opening ceremony inside the stadium, where he sat in front of Kim Yo Jong, the sister of North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.

She's the first member of Pyongyang’s ruling dynasty to set foot in South Korea since the Korean War.

Prior to the ceremony, Pence skipped a dinner where he was expected to share a table with North Korean officials, choosing to dine with American athletes instead. 

Athletes from North and South Korea are competing as a joint team under a special “unity” flag.