International Swimming League completes second season

   The sport of competitive swimming is being redefined by a new, thrilling, fast-paced professional league startup known as the International Swimming League (ISL). In its second season this year, the league boasts 10 teams with a total of 280 athletes. Teams in Canada and Japan were added for the 2020 season, increasing the international platform and adding excitement to the new format of professional competitive swimming.

   The 2020 season kicked off on October 16 with match one in Budapest, Hungary. Lilly King continued to show dominance on the women’s side for the Cali Condors in breaststroke events as she remained undefeated in her second ISL season, jackpotting in the 200 breaststroke with a time of 2:17.11 (SCM),  over a second faster than the nearest competitor. On the men’s side, Caeleb Dressel also earned crucial points for the Condors in the 100 fly and 100 individual medley, helping to carry the team to victory in match one. Energy Standard finished in a close second, with international standouts like Sarah Sjostrom earning a large share of points in sprint events

   Match two highlighted a number of strong swimmers for the London Roar as the team clinched first place with the help of Scott Duncan, Adam Peaty, Christian Diener, and Kira Toussaint, all of whom were in the top 30 season MVP standings at the end of match two. 

   The Cali Condors, Energy Standard, London Roar, and LA Current all dominated in regular-season matches, placing into the finale match that ran from the 21-22 of November.

   Energy Standard held strong with key competitors like Sarah Sjostrom, who placed 4th overall in the match for most points scored. However, it was the Condors’ Dressel and King that took first and second place in most scored points overall for the match, ultimately helping to deliver the Condors to a 97-point victory in the second ISL season. Energy Standard placed behind the Condors in second, followed by London Roar and LA Current.

   With exciting features that shake up the traditional competition of swimming like the knockout style skins race, the ISL is “swimming re-imagined”, and hoping to attract a larger base of fans outside the swimming world.

   In an interview with USA Today, DC Trident general manager and four-time Olympian Kaitlin Sandeno described the ISL experience.

   “It’s artistic but still competitive, and it’s just electrifying,” she explained. “It’s one exciting race after the other, and there’s no real lull, which you come across a lot in your typical swim meets.”