Monday, July 30, 2012

07/30 (Olympics) Quickie

First, about the whole #nbcfail thing: I have absolutely no problem with the decision by NBC to tape-delay. And the ratings bear that out -- if you get out of the Twitter vortex, you realize most people are fine with it. And you can watch anything you want live, via the Web or tablet app.

EXCEPT: The Web and tablet live video feeds have been shaky -- I was OK on Saturday, but missed a bunch of swimming on Sunday because of iffy feeds, which was maddening. Presuming NBC can work out those issues, there is nothing wrong with having a "live online now, taped on TV later" strategy.


There are two main dynamics at the Olympics, beyond winning gold: You can win silver, you can lose the gold.

Allison Schmitt? Won silver.
Men's 4x100 free relay team? Lost gold.

That's the whole thing -- expectations. Perceptions. That was the US's 4x100 to win, and Lochte couldn't do it. I called him a choker on Twitter immediately afterward, but that isn't fair to him -- it's the coach's fault for putting a swimmer without the right experience or skillset to anchor a 4x100 race (especially coming so shortly after Lochte's own 200 free semi heat). Blame Greg Troy.

Last thing: Yikes, you have to feel terrible for Jordyn Wieber. Those shots of her on TV last night were brutal -- and a reason to watch the tape-delay even though we all knew the results already. Devastating visuals, but an intrinsic and important part of the Games. We can argue whether the "only 2 from each country make it" is fair, but that's the way it is in swimming. It's harsh. If it was Raisman who finished 3rd and Wieber in the money, no one would be complaining.

As for the scoring of Wieber? Now THAT was unfair. It all combines to create the epic disappointment that seems to be as much a part of the Olympics as success.

-- D.S.

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