Ryan Lochte Ryan Lochte

Ryan Lochte's unique display of patriotism almost cost him his gold medal.

After winning the gold in the 400-meter individual medley, Lochte took to the winner's podium wearing his red, white and blue diamond-encrusted grill. According to an ESPN reporter, the 27-year-old athlete initially wanted to sport the mouthpiece while receiving the medal, but was told by a USA Swimming representative he wouldn't get his medal if he did so. He later donned the grill while showing off his medal to the crowd.

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This isn't the first time Lochte has worn a mouthpiece to celebrate his victory. He did so at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the 2009 World Championship in Rome, and the 2011 World Championship in Shanghai, as well as at other meets.

"For those who don't know what a grill is, it's basically a retainer filled with diamonds," Lochte said in an interview. "I wear it when I go on the podium. It's just a unique way of showing personality out to everyone."

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Do you think he should be able to wear the grill on the podium?