The first week of the Olympics is over and the second is in full swing. Other than Michael Phelps turning into a fish and making winning look easy, what were you impressed with thus far? What has stood out in your mind? There's been so many world records set, surprise wins, injuries, and controversies that it would take me days to summarize up until day 11. Here's a top 5 list of what has stuck in my mind and may for quite some time:
5. U.S. Domination of swimming events. Yes yes yes I know. I said OTHER than Phelps, but the swimming Golds were about more than just him. US won 4 golds in swimming minus Michael and a total of 31. Phelps helped win or won 8 gold medals in the sport, but there were 24 more won by the U.S. Women and Men's swimming teams respectively.
4. China's domination of gymnastics. They've placed in all but 2 artistic gymnastic events thus far and are still making a statement in 2 or 3 more events to come. Solid performances by their stars when it was time to shine helped them blow past the rest of the field at times and mesmerize the audience at the same time. Whether the controversy of age comes in to play later on has no bearing on the fantastic job that the competitors have done in performing.
3. So many injuries have changed how this year's summer olympics could have played out. From China's star runner Liu Xiang "praining"his achilles tendon,Tyson Gay's and Terrence Trammell's hamstring injuries, Paul Hamm's lingering injury keeping him out of the games completely, Penny Taylor from the AUS womens basketball team limping off of the court, Dwayne Wade's remarkable comeback from injury to Yao Ming giving the NBA and China a scare. It's all a part of sports and athletic competition but it makes you wonder how different things would have been without them.
2. Upsets, comebacks and close calls are always something wanted in competition but with the US swimming team along with Michael Phelps making amazing comebacks in several events to capture Gold medals it gave an extra sense of excitement to this summer's games. Jamaica sweeping the womens 100 led by 21 yr old newcomer Shelly Ann Fraser, US sweeping the mens 400 hurdles since 1960, Mr. Usain "lightning" Bolt pose and performance, as well as a few more medals being "handed" out in gymnastics to "undeserving" competitors were all huge in making this Olympic games very exciting thus far, bringing me to my last point...
1. Scandals scandals scandals... all around. Doping questions being thrown around, age questions for the "Women's" Chinese Gymnastics team, questionable calls in multiple events, boxers taking a chunk out of their competition, human rights violations, "open media access" questions, polital "wars", terrorist groups, horrible violence, disappearing athletes, on and on and on... I wonder what will come about if Chicago gets the Olympic bid for 2016 and what will be the top news stories then.
This list could continue... but it took me 2 days to find the time to type this much. Feel free to add.