How many Ukranian cops does it take to apprehend a 50-year-old former Olympic wrestling champ?
Seven, actually ... plus a bunch of pepper spray and some batons.
The man who got his face cracked open is Vyacheslav Oliynyk -- who won the gold medal at the '96 Olympics in Atlanta.
Oliynyk was reportedly stopped for drunk driving after celebrating his 50th bday -- but an argument broke out and the guy made it clear he wasn't going to jail quietly.
He squared up ... he put his hands on one of the cops ... and then all hell broke loose.
After the brawl, Oliynyk reportedly told local media, "I admit I was partially guilty, I can’t tell you the whole thing. I’m partly guilty because I did not stop and I was ignoring the police."
"But I am not a criminal. As far as I can see there will be a court hearing and they will punish me somehow because they always do. However the fact that police let me go home on the same day shows I didn’t do anything that bad."
The U.S. Olympian who was paralyzed in a freak training accident says he's GETTING BETTER ... and in an emotional new video, says he's lucky to be alive.
As we previously reported, 2-time Olympic high jumper Jamie Nieto fell on his head while training Olympic hopefuls this past weekend ... and suffered major damage to his back.
Nieto has now made a brand new video from his hospital bed -- thanking everyone for supporting him ... including Olympic star Lolo Jones who launched a fundraising campaign to pay for his medical bills.
In the emotional video, Nieto says doctors believe he has a "high chance of getting better" -- which is amazing considering he almost died following the accident.
As for the fundraising, we're told Lolo has raised more than $40k -- which is extremely significant considering Nieto had canceled his health insurance before the accident due to financial struggles.
A former U.S. Olympic star was partially paralyzed in a training incident over the weekend ... and now his friend Lolo Jones is spearheading a fundraising campaign to help pay for his medical bills.
TMZ Sports has learned ... Jamie Nieto -- a high jumper who finished 4th at the 2004 Games and 6th in 2012 -- was injured during a backflip training exercise while working with Olympic hopefuls at Azusa Pacific University in California on April 23rd.
Nieto's manager, Paul Doyle, tells us the 39-year-old landed on his head -- and the injury was so bad, a helicopter was called to the scene to transport him to USC Medical Center.
"We were very close to losing him at one stage," Doyle says ... "but thankfully, the MRI came back with no broken neck and the spinal cord remained intact."
"He’s slowly getting better. He’s starting to get feeling in his hands and legs ... doctors are optimistic."
But Nieto has another huge problem -- Doyle says Nieto had financial issues before the incident and had cancelled his health insurance to save money. Bottom line ... he's in trouble.
Enter Lolo Jones ... who trained with Nieto for years and became close with the track star. Now she wants to help raise funds to cover some of the medical costs.
In fact, Jones launched a fundraising page and made a video saying Nieto "has always been a light for me even when I've had some of my toughest moments."
"I just beg of you to please help donate to him now so that we can help him get back on his feet and he can soar to great heights once again."
So far, Jones has raised about $9,000 and counting.
If Lolo Jones ever wants to win an Olympic medal in track & field, she's gotta stop bobsledding ... this according to her 2012 U.S. Olympic teammate Duane Solomon who says Lolo needs to leave that snow alone.
Duane was at LAX when we asked him about Lolo's Olympic prospects ... basically, does the 33-year-old have a chance in hell of finally getting that elusive medal this summer?
Lolo's been doing double duty lately ... competing as a member of the U.S. bobsled team when she's not training on the track.
Solomon says that's a mistake ... telling our photog Ms. Jones would have a way better chance to end her international drought if she just focused on one sport.
Check out the clip ... and expect a Lolo reaction on Twitter in 3 ... 2 ... 1 ...
Terrorists shouldn't even THINK about harming U.S. athletes at the Olympics -- 'cause the mighty U.S. military is locked, loaded and dedicated to keeping our people safe ... so says NBA legend Mitch Richmond.
FYI, Mitch played on the U.S. Olympic basketball team back in '96 -- when a terrorist set off bombs near the team hotel in Atlanta. In the clip, Richmond describes how he reacted when he heard the explosion.
But Richmond says the fact that the team had the best security in the world watching their backs really helped the players focus on the game -- and they went out and won gold.