Olympics: What to Watch Tonight -- Tune In to NBC!

Here's our quickie guide to the day's can't-miss Summer Olympic events

Monday was a huge day for 17-year-old U.S. swimmer Missy Franklin, who won her first Olympic gold medal. But not so much for Ryan Lochte, who failed to medal for the first time in his Olympic swimming career. It was also a big day for royal watchers, who got to catch a glimpse of Wills and the ever-impeccable Kate, both of whom turned out to watch Zara Phillips, equestrian member of their brood, compete. That brings us to day four.

So let’s get to it: Here’s what to catch tonight!

Swimming, 8 p.m. ET, NBC
It’s a major moment in swimming. Michael Phelps swims the 200-meter butterfly final followed by the 4 x 200-meter freestyle relay final. He scored gold medals in both events at the 2004 and 2008 Games in Athens and Beijing. If he wins the 200-meter fly, he’ll be the first male swimmer to take the top spot at the same individual event at three Olympic Games.

Also in swimming, Franklin and her teammate Allison Schmitt will vie for the women’s 200-meter freestyle gold medal. The event could be one of the closest women’s races in the Games. And in tonight’s other swimming final, the women’s 200-meter IM (individual medley), Shiwen Ye from China could break the world record.

Women’s Gymnastics, 8 p.m. ET, NBC
Although Jordyn Wieber faced disappointment (and public tears) after failing to qualify for the all-around, she’ll need to get her confidence back in a hurry for the Americans to keep Russia at bay in the race for the gold. The American “Fab Five” are hoping to win the first team gold medal since the "Magnificent Seven" of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.

Men’s Basketball, 5:15 ET, NBC Sports
The men’s U.S.A. team, deep with N.B.A. vets and gold medals, is expected to make quick work of Tunisia. Kevin Durant’s 22 points contributed to a dominant win over France on Sunday. Despite a huge second half, Tunisia lost to Nigeria that day to open the men’s tournament.

Alesandra Dubin is a Los Angeles-based writer. Follow her on Twitter: @alicedubin.

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