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#pounditWednesday, August 4, 2021

Articles tagged: Pita Taufatofua

Tonga flag-bearer Pita Taufatofua sets internet ablaze again at Olympics

Pita-Taufatofua

Pita Taufatofua first captured the spotlight at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio when he served as the flag-bearer for Tonga, and he has returned to represent his country at a third straight Olympic Games in Japan.

Taufatofua walked alongside this year’s flag-bearer for Tonga at the Opening Ceremony in Tokyo on Friday. He was once again shirtless and oiled up, which led to a lot of excitement on Twitter.

As Taufatofua noted on Twitter, he shared the flag-bearer duties this year with Malia Paseka, who is the first female to compete for Tonga in Taekwando at the Olympics.

Believe it or not, Taufatofua actually had some strong competition from another nation this year.

Taufatofua may have gone viral initially for his looks, but his athletic resume is also incredible. In addition to competing in Taekwando at the Summer Games, he was also Tonga’s only competitor at the 2018 Winter Olympics. He trained for just three months and had to rent equipment to compete in cross-country skiing in PyeongChang.

As for the greased-up look, Taufatofua explained years ago that it is about more than just making people drool.

Tongan Pita Taufatofua hints he could be doing some shirtless modeling

Pita Taufatofua

Pita Taufatofua has become one of the most recognizable Olympic figures over the past two years after he served as Tonga’s flag bearer in Rio and PyeongChang, and he may have plans to cash in on that in the near future.

Taufatofua was stopped by a TMZ cameraman at LAX this week, and he was asked if he has any plans to do modeling shoots now that the Olympics have concluded. The 34-year-old did not rule it out.

“You never know. I’m here in L.A. You never know what’s gonna happen,” he said. “Stay tuned. We’ve got a few things lined up, so we’re just gonna see what eventuates.”

Taufatofua, who is a native of Australia, added that making money is not as important to him as representing a company with good morals.

“I’m about brands that actually help people and help people feel good,” he said. “The clothing that they wear makes them feel good — corporate responsibility and social responsibility. I want a responsible brand that helps people. It’s not interesting for me unless other people are being lifted up.”

If you saw what Taufatofua was able to accomplish in skiing at the Winter Olympics, you know he can pretty much do anything he sets his mind to. Given all the attention he got for going shirtless and oiled up during two opening ceremonies, it’s probably safe to assume plenty of companies would want him as an endorser.

Tongan Pita Taufatofua only trained for three months before competing in Olympics

Pita Taufatofua

Sometimes just showing up and competing is a victory in itself. That is certainly the case for Pita Taufatofua.

Taufatofua has become a famous Olympics figure and internet sensation. At the 2016 Summer Games in Rio, he served as Tonga’s flag bearer (going shirtless and oiled up) and competed in taekwondo. For the 2018 Winter Games in PyeongChang, Taufatofua also went shirtless as his country’s flag bearer. Even more amazingly, he competed in the 15km cross-country skiing event.

According to CNN, Taufatofua rented skis to prepare and only trained for three months! He finished 114th out of 119.

For a guy who just trained for three months before competing, finishing in 114th out of 119 really isn’t bad. He even said he would have been happy to come in last.

“I’ve come in as the last seed, so if I get a gold medal, I’ll be happy. If I come in last, I’ll be happy. I made it to the Olympics, and I got Tonga to the Olympics.”

Mexican skier German Madrazo did finish last. The two trained together along with a few others, which explains the big celebration Madrazo received upon crossing the finish line.

Tonga flag-bearer Pita Taufatofua dominating social media

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The star of the Rio Olympics opening ceremony came from an unexpected nation on Friday, and the taekwondo competitor has since gone viral.

Pita Nikolas Taufatofua proudly held the Tongan flag and led his country into Maracana Stadium. Unlike other flag-bearers, Taufatofua is jacked out of his mind and got himself all oiled up for the special occasion. He immediately set the internet on fire:

As Taufatofua later explained, he was not simply trying to make the ladies go crazy. Lathering up in coconut oil is apparently a Tongan tradition at special events.

“In Tonga, it’s traditional,” Taufatofua told Stacy St. Clair of the Chicago Tribune on Saturday. “In any sort of special event we use coconut oil … for glisten. But also if it’s a fundraising event, people stick money to it. We use it quite a lot.”

Well, this wasn’t a fundraising event, so we can conclude that it was mainly for the glisten. And glisten he did.