Pita Taufatofua won’t be Tonga’s flag bearer again this year


Update: Despite our wishes, Pita Taufatofua, the hottest male Olympian, will not be Tonga’s flag bearer again this year. The honor will go to another deserving Tongan, Taekwondo athlete Malia Paseka.


Pita Taufatofua will compete in Tokyo again this year. The three-time Olympian who went viral for looking like an Adonis in the 2016 and 2018 Opening Ceremonies will compete in Taekwondo.

Now, I have a long-standing policy against swooning for straight guys. It makes me feel like I’m right back in high school, fantasizing about my friends and their toxic masculinity.

But Taufatofua is an exception. I mean, just look at him.

The Today Show Gallery of Olympians

Pita Taufatofua is gorgeous.
Photo by Harry How/Getty Images

The chiseled chest; rock-hard abs; body drenched in oil. I’m salivating — and not alone! Taufatofua’s popularity spreads across all gender identities and sexual orientations.

Closing Ceremony 2016 Olympic Games - Olympics: Day 16

Lathering up Taufatofua should be an Olympic sport in and of itself.
Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Oh, and before I forget, Taufatofua is also an exceptional athlete. He competed in Taekwondo five years ago, and will do the same in Tokyo. For the 2018 Winter Games, he participated cross-country skiing.

Around the Games: Day 5 - Winter Olympic Games

He even looks good with clothes on!
Photo by Mike Lawrie/Getty Images

This year, Taufatofua tried to qualify for three different sports in three consecutive Games, but ran into bad luck. He missed the qualifying event for spring kayaking on two occasions: first due to injury, and then to Covid-19 restrictions.

Taufatofua has been quarantining in Australia since the pandemic began.

2018 Winter Olympic Games - Opening Ceremony

I definitely wouldn’t mind quarantining with him.
Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images

“We haven’t been able to go to any other countries to do any competition to compete against other people,” he told USA Today. “There were other challenges, but there’s no victory without first going through the battles.”

Forever the optimist, Taufatofua brought his paddles to Tokyo with him, anyway. “We need an Olympic miracle,” he said.

While we’re bummed to miss Taufatofua in the Opening Ceremony, we’re blessed to still be able to see him.

And that’s our own little Olympic miracle.


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