In the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Alain Bernard promised that the French would “smash” the Americans in the 4×100 relay. In what was, without a doubt, my moment of the 2008 Beijing Olympics, the US men won the 4×100 relay by .08 seconds defeating the heavily favored French. After the final, Alain Bernard said, “C’est sport,” or “That’s sport.”
After weeks, and even months of predictions, sometimes sports just surprise everyone. Sometimes the surprise is good, sometimes the surprise is bad, sometimes the surprise is just a surprise.
So far, 2012 London has provided lots of surprises.
1 Michael Phelps doesn’t medal in the 400 IM relay
I wasn’t surprised at all that Lochte took gold, but it was weird that Michael Phelps almost didn’t even make the final, and didn’t even medal was a surprise. Weird, and yet not weird. He is getting old…
2 Kohei Uchimora falls. Twice.
Let that sink in for a minute. Kohei Uchimora fell. Twice. He. Fell. Twice. Kohei Uchimora falling twice is like God falling twice. Ok, maybe not quite. But Kohei Uchimora sometimes seems positively inhuman, and I was stunned to see that he is actually a human being. He qualified for the AA, but in 9th place. Wow. I’m still picking him to win though.
3 US men in first place after qualifying/China and Japan meltdown
These two surprises are interrelated. I’m surprised to see that China and Japan completely melted down in the prelims, counting several falls and not even finishing in the top 3! Also, I’m surprised to see the US finish first. But this is a good surprise, and I hope they take the inspiration into the team finals.
4 Danell Leyva not making parallel bars finals.
The reigning world champion on parallel bars didn’t qualify for the event finals on this event. Surprising. Still, he qualified 1st into the AA(!), his team is first after prelims, and he’s competing in the high bar final. He’s probably not too upset about it.
5 Jordyn Weiber not making AA finals.
In my obvious/non-expert/lame predictions I said that Jordyn would not win the AA final. I just didn’t think that this is her time. A part of me didn’t even expect her to medal. However, I never expected her not to make the AA finals. In fact, one of my predictions was that Raisman wouldn’t make the finals, and now Aly has qualified first! I expcted the judges to hammer Aly’s poor form, and the probably did, but the judges also hammered Jordyn’s questionable elements and connections. Wow. Major shocker.
Oh, if Viktoria Komova does what she did today in the AA, no one can touch her.
But then again, sport is full of surprises. C’est sport.