LONDON -- The U.S. men gymnasts began the team competition with the floor exercise, the apparatus they ranked first on in team qualifications (they were also first in horizontal bar, which is the last rotation Monday for the Americans).
In this team finals format, in which only three of the five men per team compete and all three scores count, Danell Leyva of Homestead, Fla., was up first with Sam Mikulak, the 19-year-old from Newport Coast second and Jacob Dalton of Reno, Nev., in the final spot.
The favored Japanese were first on the rings, where three-time defending world all-around Kohei Uchimura led off with Yusuke Tanaka second and Koji Yamamuro third. Defending gold medalist China also began on rings, coming up after the Japanese and being led by 2008 Olympian Chen Yibing, a four-time world champion on the apparatus and the defending Olympic gold medalist.
Leyva's floor was full of unwavering power. He had a small hop after his final landing. While he was competing, Uchimura earned a 15.133 on the still rings.