4 to watch

4 to Watch: Skateboarding's Olympic Debut, 1st Swimming Medals, Simone Biles & More

From our first look at Simone Biles to the first swimming medals and a highly anticipated skateboarding competition, there's plenty to see

NBCUniversal Media, LLC

Pro skateboarder Tony Hawk is in Tokyo for skateboarding’s debut at the Tokyo Olympics and shared what viewers should look for when watching the sport’s events on TV. “The artistry what people should be looking for,” Hawk said. “Skating is as much about style as it is about technique.”

There is no shortage of must-see action on Day 2 of the Tokyo Olympics. The first medals in the swimming competition were awarded, with Team USA bringing home medals in each final, while skateboarding debuted in the Olympics with a letdown from American superstar and gold medal favorite Nyjah Huston.

Simone Biles hit the gymnastics floor in her usual style, along with the rest of Team USA, for the first step on their quest to gold early Sunday, while the best surfers in the world rode the waves in Tokyo for the first time Saturday night.

Without further ado, here are our 4 to Watch on Day 2:

DON'T MISS THE ACTION: For a complete rundown of all the day's events in Tokyo, visit the streaming schedule page for NBCOlympics.com. Watch every event live there, on the NBC Sports App and connected set-top boxes and catch the highlights in primetime on NBC.

1. Skateboarding Makes Its Olympic Debut With USA Superstar Nyjah Huston

American Jagger Eaton took the bronze medal in the first-ever Olympic skateboarding final on Sunday in Tokyo, while World No. 1 Nyjah Huston missed the podium. 

Huston, the most well-known American skateboarder with nearly five million Instagram followers and the highest-paid skateboarder in the world hoped to shine in the inaugural competition. Huston won the world title in 2017, 2018 and 2019. But he was relegated to silver at 2021 Worlds by Japanese Horigome Yuto.

This 26-year-old Tokyo gold medal favorite might very well be the most interesting athlete that the average fan, steeped in the history of legacy sports such as track, gymnastics and swimming, has never heard of heading into the Tokyo Games.

Arguably the sport’s most recognizable athlete, Huston grew up in Davis, California, where his family owned a skate park. He made his X Games debut as a pint-sized 11-year-old, garnering a reputation as a rising talent.

Now, with 10 X Games titles in street to his name, Huston has created an empire that includes a signature Nike shoe and an organization to bring clean water to underprivileged communities.

While the sport’s inclusion in the Olympics has led to some uncertainty in the skateboarding community, Huston says, “It’s about time…I’m just thankful that I’m in a place and time [to] hopefully be a part of it for the first time.”  

MORE: Nyjah Huston details street skateboarding format

2. Swimming Awards Its First Medals

Swimmer Chase Kalisz won gold in the men’s 400m Individual Medley, the first gold medal for the United States at the Tokyo Olympics

The first medals were awarded in swimming with finals in four events: men’s 400m individual medley (IM), men’s 400m freestyle, women’s 400m IM and women’s 4x100m relay.

Chase Kalisz and Jay Litherland delivered Team USA’s first medals of the Tokyo Olympics on Saturday night, taking the gold and silver, respectively, in the 400 individual medley.

Connecticut's own Kieran Smith placed third in the men's 400m freestyle final to add a bronze medal to Team USA's count.

After dominating the women's 400m IM heats, 19-year-old Emma Weyant made history winning silver in the individual medley final. She extended a 17-year streak of American women winning a medal in the 400 IM at every Olympics.

Hali Flickinger won bronze in the event finishing just behind Weyant.

With Simone Manuel swimming the anchor leg, Team USA took bronze in the women's 4x100m freestyle relay. Manuel joined the relay despite not qualifying in the 100m individual race or competing in the heat.

Americans Torri Huske and Claire Curzan swam in the women's 100m butterfly semifinals, with the former qualifying for the final race.

MORE: Tunisian swimmer stuns with Lane 8 win in 400m freestyle

3. Simone Biles' Quest for More Gold Starts Early Sunday

Simone Biles, known as the greatest gymnast in history, discusses her motivation as well as the importance of pushing herself to her limits in preparation for Tokyo 2020.

It should come as no surprise that after the United States completed its women's gymnastics qualifying round, the leader in the all-around is Simone Biles.

With a score of 14.133 on floor exercise, 14.066 on beam, 14.966 on vault and 14.566 on uneven bars, Biles finished with a score of 57.731. Just behind her is U.S. teammate Sunisa Lee, who topped Biles on beam with a 14.200 and uneven bars with a 15.200. Lee also scored a 13.433 on floor and 14.333 on vault for a total of 57.166.

The 24 gymnasts with the top cumulative individual scores advance to the individual all-around final, with a limit of two gymnasts per country.

As a team, the United States' score of 170.562 is currently second behind the Russian Olympic Committee's 171.629.

MORE: Watch -- Simone Biles, Suni Lee dazzle in official team gymnastics practice

4. American Surfers Carissa Moore, Caroline Marks Go for Gold

Meet athlete Carissa Moore as she talks about one of the Olympics newest events, surfing.

The first-ever Olympic surfing competition took place Sunday morning in Tokyo, with round 1 consisting of five heats of four surfers. In each heat, the top-two surfers advance to round 3, while the bottom two move on to round 2.

Team USA surfers Carissa Moore, Caroline Marks, Kolohe Andino and John Florence all advanced to the third round of the first-ever Olympic surfing event.

Olympic surfing competition is taking place at Shidashita Beach, which is about 40 minutes outside of Tokyo.

Moore, a Hawaii native, started surfing when she was just 5 years old off the beaches of Waikiki with her dad, Chris. A prodigious talent, she impressed at a number of junior competitions and says that by age 12, she was talking with her dad about whether she wanted to pursue the sport professionally.

“I knew it was going to be a lot of hard work, but I also knew it would be really fun.”

In 2011, the then 18-year-old clinched her first world title, making her the youngest surfer to ever win the award. She has since claimed another three world titles (2013, 2015, 2019). One of the only pro surfers to attend a traditional brick and mortar high school, Moore graduated from Punahou High in Honolulu, the same school that former President Barack Obama attended. The 27-year-old is still coached by her father; they live in neighboring houses in Honolulu.

Two-time world champion Florence had one of the most difficult qualification processes to the Olympics because it involved an expedited recovery from an ACL injury. The Hawaii native missed a significant portion of the World Surf League in 2019 after tearing his ACL for the second time in 13 months earlier in 2019.

Five months after the injury, the 27-year-old competed at the final event of the season, earning enough points to edge Kelly Slater for the second and final U.S. Olympic spot.

MORE: Carissa Moore shares importance of surfing joining the Olympics

Copyright NBC New York