Oh, diving's amazing. I love both the individual and the synchronized diving, though a more diabolical sport than synchronized diving I can't imagine. Not only do you have to be perfect in midair, but you have to match someone else in midair...even heavyweight weightlifting has to be easier than that. Stupendously beautiful when done right, in the bargain.
I also find that Cynthia Potter's commentary adds immeasurably to my appreciation and understanding of what I'm watching with any diving.
As for water polo, if ever there was an unsung sport...I don't know anyone who plays it in the U.S., whereas all the other team sports are played in some venue or another over here, in a high school gym or field at least. (We used to play field hockey and volleyball where I went to school.) I mean, they dropped softball because it wasn't popular enough, but they kept water polo....there must be countries where it's huge, but it isn't known much in the U.S. Interestingly, it's been around in the Olympics for quite some time. In the 1956 Melbourne Games, the Hungarian team famously went after the Soviet team to vent their emotions about the Soviet invasion of Hungary that year.
Me on the other hand, I saw softball and baseball in 2004 and had no idea what I was looking at, I cheered when people next to me cheered, it was part of my quest to find out about all the Olympic sports
I love softball! And water polo is one of those prep school sports - or at least that's what it seems to be - here in the US... very *exclusive*... kinda like (or more so) than figure skating or gymnastics.
Last edited by Bluebonnet; 08-17-2012 at 04:02 PM.
Well, at least I learned something about field hockey. Namely, that there is a position called the pusher-outer.
Not to be confused with the drag-flicker.
Now, see, Seniorita, softball/baseball is the only major team sport I actually understand. I can even follow a game on the radio. I know why a player scores, and why he/she is out. It's a function of culture, not of any sports smarts on my part. I grew up listening to the game on the radio. Don't ask me about any of the other games, though.
I do know that the American women won the water polo gold, but I have no idea how players in this country get introduced to the sport.
Olympia, soon you'll be familiar with another Olympic team sport: team figure skating!
Wow, you're right! What fun to contemplate.
It would be more fun if it made any sense.
The concept of "team" as we see in gymnastics and most other sports is not about one participant in an event.
A team event could be more meaningful if they let three skaters per event compete.
Ah....then the problem becomes more clear when we get to Pairs and Dance as certain federations are non-competitive.
Does anyone wonder about how much lobbying went on to keep Dance and Pairs down? Or maybe even the Ladies?
In addition to having an actual team competition with three skaters/teams per discipine (with medals awarded) the cumulative scores could then be totaled up to determine who actually had the best overall team.
This format would be great for fans not to mention a few skaters whose lifetime dream it was to compete at the Olympics but never had the chance.
The gymnastic team event is wildly popular because it is exciting and dramatic.
Why are skating fans going to be robbed of the chance to see one of their skaters or teams come up with a "skate of their life" helping the TEAM onto victory or the podium?
To be clear I am not talking about Patrick who is expected to shine but perhaps one of the other Canadian Men. Think more like Kyla Ross scoring a 15.1 on the beam which was so crucial at the time for Team USA.
Or Keri vaulting on an injured leg for the team...... stuff of legends,no?
Seems that the adopted format will be lacking anything close to the drama we have seen at other team events.
ETA: Check this out........it was for the TEAM.........
I don't recall ever seeing anything like this in skating.
I think it is long overdue for ISU (and US Skating) to purge themselves of the out of touch geriatrics that control this sport.
Last edited by janetfan; 08-18-2012 at 02:14 PM.
^ I agree that the team concept has great potential for generating excitement about Olympic skating.
As for having only one performer in each discipline, I wouldn't be surprised if that is strictly an economic decision to hold down expenses for this trial event. I think I am remebering right that when the ISU first proposed the team event, the proposal was that a country could send a skater to the team event who was not also scheduled to skate as an individual. It was the IOC that shot this down. Under the IOC rules, there will not be any additional skaters to feed and house in the Olympic village.
To me, it seems possible that the team competition could be the most popular skating event, like it is in gymnastics. (OK, Gabby won all-around as an individual , but...USA! USA! USA! )
I agree that the problem is pairs and dance. Not many countries can field three competitive pairs teams (or even one). Maybe a better team format would be just men and ladies, say three of each per team. It could create some great Cinderella stories. "Oh no, Michelle and Sasha both fell! But here comes 15-year-old Kimmie Meissner representing our last chance....YES!"
Last edited by Mathman; 08-18-2012 at 04:32 PM.
Why would you need 3 competitive pairs for team competition?
Maybe I should go to read again the team event? Anyway it feels strange to see it first time in Olympics.
Wouldn't it seem that figure skating could have more than just one skater/team per discipline in a team event?
And oddly enough the individual skating competition can have two or even three skaters/teams from the same federation competing in some of the disciplines.
It would be fun if we saw the individual skating competiton right at the start of the games to be finished the first week.
The second week we could see four consecutive nights of team events by discipline with medals awarded each night and the team medal ceremony after the last event was concluded.
I think we could see some fierce competitons. I for one would like to see the Japanese Ladies go head to head with the Russian babies.
I also see the possibilty of something nice here as both Japan and Russia have some awfully good skaters that would normally not get to compete at the Olympics.
Mao, Miki, Akiko, Kanako or others might all get to compete at the Olympics if we added a true team event.
Same for the very deep field of Russian ladies.
Same for the Men....and yes, why not let more Pairs and Dance teams get to experience skating at the Olympics?
Why not give the fans more skating at the Olympics?
Last edited by janetfan; 08-19-2012 at 07:31 AM.