The uncertain future of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games

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BRYAN, Tex. (KBTX) - International Olympic Committee officials finally announced that the 2020 Summer Games in Tokyo will be postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

It's an unprecedented move in an uncertain time as the world tries to project when life will begin to get back to normal.

Less than 24 hours after Australia followed Canada's lead and pledged not to send athletes unless the games were postponed, officials finally backed off their stubborn insistence that the Games would go on as planned.

But what does that mean for the athletes competing? The companies broadcasting? And where does this stand in the context of Olympic history?

To provide some historical context and give some idea of what happens now, we invited on 12-time Olympic broadcaster Dennis Mazzocco.

He made it clear: Olympic officials have a serious problem on their hands.

"Until this threat has passed," Mazzocco explains, "I don't think they're gonna be able to have an Olympics."

While comparing these Games with similar issues faced in Rio de Janeiro back in 2016, Mazzocco says this was an unprecedented case and required swift action. But ultimately, he was confident that the Tokyo games will take place.

"It will come back," Mazzocco confidently says, "but it's just a matter of when."

Watch the full interview in the player above.