Girls on Trampoline

August 23, 2008

Girls on trampoline? No, it's not the Man Show. With a blink of an eye a little known Olympic sport has come and gone. Trampoline makes an appearance every four years at the Olympics. I don't even recall it making a prime time appearance this time around around. It's difficult to fathom how trampoline is a medal sport and softball isn't.

Needless to say, I was somewhat looking forward to trampoline. I recall the first viewing of the 'sport'? The first competitor I saw was a tiny girl who bounced her way with such amplitude that the camera couldn't even keep her on the screen. The next woman tamplinIST, I'm assuming, was a bit larger in nature and had the look of someone much "hungrier" which was a disadvantage as the camera had no problem keeping its eye on her.

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Women's Chinese Gymnastic's Team

August 17, 2008

Much has been made of the women's Chinese Gymnastics Team and the age of some of the competitors. Bela Karolyi's comments have been hysterical. Q went as far as to say wouldn't it be great to have a Bela Karolyi channel? With NBC leading the world in coverage of the Olympics, could anyone imagine the possibility of leveraging the investigative reporting team? Maybe it would be more entertaining to satire the events like Saturday Night Live often does. It could look something like the following:

Elderly Man: (walks into house)
Young girl: (over the intercom) I'll be down in a minute. I'm putting on my training uniform.
Chris Hansen: (approaches elderly man) Hello. Do you know who I am?
Elderly Man: Yes. You're Chris Hanson.
Chris Hansen: Then you know this is the part of the show where I say that I'm Chris Hanson.
Elderly Man: Yes.
Chris Hansen: Then you also know this is the part of the show that I introduce the film crew.
Elderly Man: Yes.
Audio Crew: (Moves In)
Video Crew: (Moves In)
Chris Hansen: And this is the part of the show where I say that this is Dateline NBC to catch a scout for women's gymnastics.
Elderly Man: Actually I'm not here to scout young girls for the women's gymnastics team. I'm here to encourage her to play ping's the national past time.Ping Pong. In fact, I'm on my way to a ping pong tournament now and should be going. (exits)
Olympic Committee Officials: (wrestle scout to the ground and take him away)

USA Basketball: Redeem Team

August 13, 2008

Team USA won by 21 vs. Angola. Much like Bond, I like my USA/Angola match-up to be shaken not stirred. Gone are the days when NBA Pros can dunk and knock down an Angolan player a la Charles Barkley with the Angolan basically asking for an autograph. The 1992 "Dream Team" really was a dream boasting some of the best players and legends of the game. In 1992 the USA won by 68 in the match up. It was sheer dominance in every sense of the word.

Not only has the International game and competition improved since 1992, but the mind set has also changed. Where are the legends of countless years with plenty of game still in them to dominate the field on the team. The most subtle of changes in the NBA was the ability for a time to draft high school players. It changed the field. Players were learning on the job more so then ever. It's taken it's toll on the NBA as the league became much younger. International players aren't looking for autographs anymore. They play with the young NBA players and they want to beat Team USA.

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Olympic Fever

August 12, 2008

There are so many stories to discuss from the spectacular opening ceremony to Michael Phelps becoming the gold standard winning his eleventh gold medal tonight in the 4X200m freestyle relay. So much has been made of Phelps chasing down Mark Spitz record of seven gold medals. Phelps has won or been part of a team relay to set a world record time on his way to winning each gold so far through his races.

Viewers have watched interviews and heard of Michael's rigorous schedule during the Olympics. Yet, what seems to be missed during the hype of the "chase" of Spitz record is his own personal pride and dedication to be the best and challenge himself. How many folks have the opportunity in front of them and dare to take the risk to move leaps and bounds ahead? The deeper meaning in all of the footage and interviews seen on TV is how much he pushes himself for himself and not for the glory of shattering a record but to test the boundaries of his own personal talents.

Too bad a soft and understated Pat Summerall in his prime isn't available to cover the events and let the event itself capture the moment and not the same lines and questions on air. One of the closest relays and most excitng races in a US Gold victory displayed Phelps competitive nature rooting on his teammates as the bulletin board material by other teams saying they'd smash the US in the relays only seemed to push Phelps more that night. Could Michael Phelps be "Best there ever was. Best there is now and best there ever will be", as mentioned in "The Natural."

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