Sunday, August 21, 2016

2016 Olympic Games

Rio 2016

I was surprised to learn that my sports-loving coworker has not been watching the Olympics.  I have been bingeing on Olympic events since the opening ceremony.  I love having the freedom to watch on the different NBC networks, the NBC Sports app, as well as nbcolympics.com.  I know NBC has received some criticism for including athlete profiles and commentary with their network coverage, but with all the viewing options, it is possible to watch just about every event you want to see.  Not to mention the great scheduling information, highlights, and full event replays available on the website and app. Considering the amount of coverage the Olympics is receiving, you are probably up-to-date on the results. For those of you who didn't follow the games or actively avoided the coverage, here are a few highlights: 

Michael Phelps won his 23rd gold medal (five in Rio) and tied for a silver medal in the 100m Butterfly, bringing his Olympic medal total to 28.  He is unquestionably the most decorated Olympic athlete in history.  History was also made in the pool when Simone Manuel became the first African-American female to win an Olympic medal in an individual swimming event.  Simone tied for gold in the 100m Freestyle, won silver in the 50m Freestyle, and picked up another gold medal anchoring the women's 4x100m Medley Relay.  

Usain Bolt completed his track and field three-peat in Rio by winning the 100m, 200m, and 4x100m relay.  He won gold medals in these three events in Beijing (2008) and London (2012) bringing his gold medal count to 9.  He has tied the record for most gold medals by a track and field athlete.  Jamaica also dominated the women’s sprints with Elaine Thompson winning gold in both the 100m and 200m races.  Not to be outdone, the U.S. women’s team easily won gold in the 4x100m relay. 

One of the top names in tennis emerged without a medal at the 2016 Olympics.  Serena Williams did not medal in either singles or doubles, but Venus Williams and her partner Rajeev Ram won the silver medal in mixed doubles.  Rafa Nadal competed in the bronze medal match and despite a comeback to force a third set, he was unable to win the bronze medal.  However, he and his partner Marc Lopez claimed the gold medal in men’s doubles.  Finally, Andy Murray secured back-to-back Olympic gold medals by defeating Juan Martin del Potro in a four-set match.

The “Final Five” exerted their dominance in women’s gymnastics.  The U.S. won the women’s team competition, gold and silver in the individual all-around, gold in the women’s vault, silver in the women’s uneven bars, silver and bronze in balance beam, and gold and silver in floor exercise.  Simone Biles will leave Rio with four gold medals (team, all-around, vault, floor exercise) and one bronze due to a slip on the balance beam.  Teammate Aly Raisman earned two individual silver medals (all-around, floor exercise), Madison Kocian won silver for uneven bars, and Laurie Hernandez won silver for balance beam.  That is a total of eight individual medals to go along with their win in the team competition.

I couldn't possibly cover all the events I've watched, but I hope this gives you a feel for the great competition that took place in Rio. Even though the 2016 Olympics is drawing to a close, remember that you can watch replays of events on the website and app mentioned above. Enjoy the closing ceremonies and GO TEAM USA!!!

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