Could some of Michael Phelps' medals be in danger?
But still, by Olympic rules, Phelps could theoretically lose up to all of his medals from the 2012 games after photos like this one surfaced.
By Olympic rules, athletes are not allowed to appear in advertisements for non-Olympic sponsors between July 18 and August 15. This basically prevents non-sponsors from gaining from the huge popularity bump during the actual Games.
The loophole that will likely result in Phelps walking away scot free is the fact that it's highly unlikely that he or Louis Vuitton leaked the photos.
If Phelps himself had leaked the photos, he would have been in violation of the rules. If Louis Vuitton leaked them, he would also be in violation, since that would essentially be an advertisement.
Since the photos were almost definitely leaked by one person who got their hands on the photos and doesn't necessarily represent Phelps or Louis Vuitton, Phelps is most likely off the hook.
Still, it's a bit remarkable how such a seemingly minor issue could possibly result in one of the greatest Olympians of all time losing multiple medals.
Granted, it won't happen. But what a crazy world we live in.