"Remember in Rio when I made that face that ended up all over the Internet?" Phelps asked sheepishly.
The audience applauded. They knew.
Phelps explained why he looked so intense: "I was in the zone with Future's track 'Stick Talk' blaring in my headphones."
Then, Phelps introduced Future onstage to perform … "Stick Talk." So everything came full circle. "I might have a lot of golds, but this guy has got all the platinums," Phelps gushed.
Earlier in Rio, Phelps had clarified that he wasn't directing his angry look toward South African swimmer Chad le Clos, as many had assumed.
"I just had music going on in my head. I had thoughts going on in my head, spitting water a little bit all over the place, so I was in my own zone," Phelps told the "Today" show in mid-August. "I was not intentionally mean mugging him or giving him a dirty look."