Sue Bird and Eddy Alvaraz Carry the American Flag As They Lead Team USA Into the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

Four-time Olympic gold medalist Sue Bird and Olympic baseball player Eddy Alvaraz were the flag bearers for Team USA at the opening ceremony for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

By Kisha Forde Jul 23, 2021 1:42 PMTags
Watch: 2020 Tokyo Olympics: By the Numbers

Sue Bird and Eddy Alvaraz are leading the way for Team USA.

At the 2020 Olympics on Friday, July 23, the decorated duo became the first to share the honor of leading their fellow teammates into the Opening Ceremony.

The WNBA legend and four-time Olympic gold medalist shared how excited she was for this very moment, which cements her in history as the second American female basketball player to carry the flag, in an interview with NBC. The current coach for the 2020 U.S. Olympic Women's Basketball team, Dawn Staley, was the first to do so in 2004. 

"It's very difficult to explain," Sue shared. "The energy is insane. I know our country's in a tough moment right now, but right now, we all feel unified and it's incredible."

As for Alvarez, the 31-year-old baseball player—who previously won silver in speed skating at the 2014 Sochi Olympics—has also made history as he becomes the first Cuban-American player to carry the American flag.

The Most Memorable Moments in Olympics History

"Oh my God, this is absolutely incredible!" Eddy shared. "Thank God that I have Sue here holding me up, 'cause I'm freaking out a little bit guys. I'm not going to lie. But this is so emotional and I feeling the energy by my team right now and it's absolutely incredible, guys."

The Miami Marlins infielder also echoed his sentiment of excitement in an interview with the Today show.

Maja Hitij/Getty Images

"I mean, such an emotional moment for me, for my family, for my background," Eddy shared. "You know, just to get the honor to represent the United States of America, to hold the flag, the symbol of liberty and freedom. You know, my family came over to this country from Cuba first, in search of opportunity. And if it wasn't for them doing that, I wouldn't be in the position that I am now. The privilege that I have that I had to hold the flag. This has been such a whirlwind of emotions."

Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

And in an undoubtedly emotional moment, Eddy's mom, dad, wife Gabby Alvarez and their 11-month-old baby surprised the star with congratulations on his achievement by making a virtual appearance during his interview. "Seeing all the Americans really gave me chills and I see Eddie in front of all the US team knocked me out myself," Eddy's dad, Walter Alvarez, said. "I cannot be any more proud, I cannot be any happier. I cannot be more grateful for everything, mainly to this country."

As for Sue, the basketball player shared a special shout-out in her interview with NBC to all the parents unable to attend due to this year's safety measures. "We have their support; even though they're not here we are going to feel it from afar and we just want to thank them so much," she said. "And I want to say good luck to all the athletes and to all the families we love you and stay with us."

Looking for all the details on the 2020 Olympics? Don't worry, everything you need is right here. Let the games begin!

Check out E! News' 2022 Beijing Olympics homepage for news, photos and more.