batons are made of butter...
Who else can't hold onto a relay baton? You wouldn't think
it would be that hard...
• Bob leads us in to some action from early this morning,
featuring the U.S. volleyball team facing the Russians. Perhaps
you already saw this if you were up at 3 a.m. I'm betting
Off to taped action already in progress. Actually, it's
already over, but let's play along. Tied
at two sets apiece, we get to skip all of the lead up and
ARE some advantages
On a spike shot, the Russians foul by being
over the 10-foot line. Imagine Russia violating a boundary.
That never happens,
We're tied at eight in a match that goes to
15. The winner of this game advances to the gold medal
round. The loser
goes to the South Osettian front. Well, I mean, if Russia
loses that is. And they will. Go U.S.A.! Woooo!
up 11-10 but blows the next serve. Nervous, Russkie? Not
us! We have ice in our veins. That's why we won the Cold
The Russians put in Semen
Poltavsky in a substitution.
What? I'm just reporting the guy's name. They only leave
for a point, then pull him out. So, Semen's in and out.
That was fast. I hope they were satisfied.
And the U.S.A. wins! Russia goes down 15-13 and the United
States will play for the gold for the first time since 1988.
Back in the studio, Bob has a LIVE interview with U.S. Volleyball
coach Hugh McCutcheon. The first part of the interview
win over the
Russians and everything we just saw. The rest, and the majority,
is about the attack on his father-in-law and mother-in-law
Games. I know this isn't an event, but even I'm not hard-hearted
enough to think that this isn't worthy of discussion. Not
Off to the Bird's Nest, where we finally get to see some
of the decathlon. Bryan Clay, U.S. decathlete, balances his
life between training and family! Awww! He loves his family
and his kids! Why, that looks like someone who could get
a giant endorsement contract if he wins the gold! Fluff!
Dwight Stone gives us a rundown of the decathlon's first
day since we didn't get to see any of it on NBC yesterday.
And then he runs down the first four events of the second
day. All-in-all, he spends about five minutes on it before
telling us that Clay has one event left and he's almost
guaranteed a medal. Five minutes on the event that determines
the "world's greatest athlete?" A few
nights ago we spent
that much time watching Mary Carillo
fly kites! What's
up with that?
Now we get to see the medal ceremony that we missed yesterday
for the U.S. sweep of the 400m. The winner, LaShawn Merritt,
doesn't sing. Jeremy Wariner, bitter second place finisher,
doesn't sing. David Neville, who literally dove across the
line to edge out the Bahama's Chris Brown for the bronze,
sings the entire Star Spangled Banner. Guess who my new
• Now the U.S. women get to try to make up for last
night... or was it the night before? This China time-shift
me all confused... in the women's 4x400m relay semifinal.
Try not to drop the baton this time. Unlike last
today the U.S.A.'s bibs look like they were printed in advance,
not written with Sharpies.
The baton and the U.S. team make
it all the way around tonight. Bob Neumeier asks Sanya
Richards if there were discussions about
doing just that. The look on Sanya's face indicates that
it probably wasn't a pleasant discussion.
And now we're off to... water polo? Really? Cool! Something
different! The U.S.A. is playing Serbia for a chance to get
to the gold medal game, and currently they're ahead 7 to
5 with five minutes to play.
You want to talk about some
athletes? Water polo players swim back and forth across
the pool, tread water, fight off
other players and throw a ball to score goals, all for
ten-minute stretches at a time. Think you could tread water
minutes? Go ahead, try. I'll bet some of you get tired
walking from your couch to the fridge. I know I do. Just
water polo makes me tired.
The Americans stretch their lead
to 9-5 before a commercial break.
Commercial break! Two kids, a boy and a girl, go all Crouching
Tiger, Hidden Dragon fighting over their last Chicken McNugget.
Why not just get another Happy Meal, kids? Heck, then you'll
even get another toy. Bonus!
Back to water polo, and the U.S. scores right away to make
it 10 to 5 with two-and-a-half minutes left. The Americans
haven't gotten ANY medal in water polo in 20 years, and it
looks like now they'll be playing for the gold. Announcer
Bob Fitzgerald says that the Serbians reportedly lost to
Italy on purpose in the qualifying rounds just so they
U.S. in the medal rounds. Heh. How'd that work out for you,
Not too well. The U.S. wins and advances. The Serbians sulk
to the bronze medal game.
Finally! NBC mentions the softball team getting the silver
medal, but only in a segment about how well the U.S. is doing
in team sports.
Mary Carillo on martial arts! Yes! Taekwondo! Oh... wrong.
It's a story on the Kung Fu Monks. Mary goes to the Shaolin
Temple, birthplace of Kung Fu. I knew that because I watched
season. Anyway, Mary learns some forms from a monk. Or
rather, a Shaolin monk humors her instead of breaking her
in two. Then she punches monk in stomach with no effect.
Then she watches another monk do a handstand
Back in the studio, Bob can't believe that Mary could resist
using "Kung Fu Fighting" as a musical backdrop, saying those
monks were as "fast
as lightning" and "a little
Interesting, but still fluff.
The Chevy Gold Medal Spotlight tonight is back in the diving
pool. I thought yesterday was the last day of diving. I guess
not. TONIGHT is the last night. I think. Maybe it's tomorrow.
Oh, what do I know?
the finals of the men's platform diving. The U.S. has two
divers that have a chance to qualify. Does it really
matter? We all know the Chinese are going to win. They
win all the diving.
Fluffette for U.S. divers David Boudia and Thomas Finchum,
who are friends. No one told them life was going to be
this way. So far it hasn't been their day, their week, their
month, or even their year.
Cris Collinsworth, American's favorite soccer dad, does five
minutes on the Redeem Team. "LeBron
is over here... then over there... and boom... and like wow!" Has
there ever been a goofier man on NBC? He's pleasant enough,
every time he's on screen it's like they just picked up some
enthusiastic fan and put him on the air. I guess that's what
I'd look like if I was on NBC.
Anyway, he asks LeBron about the differences between the
2004 and 2008 teams. LeBron says "team" is the
key word. Sappy, but isn't that the answer we all wanted
to hear? Plus, I don't think he's trying to pull the wool
over our eyes. It's clear James believes what he's saying.
asks if the U.S.A. wins the gold medal, when they play
national anthem, will LeBron cry? Never mind that, what I
want to know is will he
Back to the Bird's Nest for the men's 4x400m relay. The U.S.
men are in this first heat. Don't drop the baton!
and cruise easily into first place. And just like at the
women's relay earlier, Bob Neumeier asks this team, too,
about the baton pass. Before last night's races, who would
have ever thought that would be so important?
In heat two, the Jamaicans actually finish in second behind
the British. Ato rebukes the British runner Martyn Rooney
for poor sportsmanship because he's taunting the Jamaican
as they come down the stretch. It's only a semifinal, says
Ato. Not good idea to taunt the Jamaican team, says Tom.
They're both right, Martyn. You're asking for trouble.
To the pole vault, with Dwight Stone doing the commentary.
Dwight Stone is awesome. I wish NBC would give more time
to the "field" events
just because Dwight is so good at telling you what's going
The U.S. vaulter Derek Miles, fails at his last jump, meaning
he can do no better than fourth. Dwight then tells us that
this means the U.S. has no pole vaulter, triple jumper, high
jumper, or long jumper in the finals. Ohhhh... so THAT'S
why we don't spend any more time in "field."
Peyton and Eli Manning have played, in various commercials,
Hungry, Hungry Hippos, Jenga, Go Fish, and had a thumb
war. You know what they SHOULD have played? Electric
Now THAT would have been funny.
And now we get some fluff on both the men and women from
the U.S. relay teams dropping the baton.
The also get scolded for not having their bibs printed
out. That's the
responsibility? I would have thought that would have been
the race organizers, but I guess not.
High-ranking Team Rockwood member Sandy
says, "This is fluff? I thought fluff was supposed to be
happy." It's the new "depression fluff." All the emo kids
Anyway, now it's time for the women's 4x100m relay, sans
Americans. They're in the blocks... and they're off!
Kingston, mon! Tonight, JAMAICA blows the baton transfer!
night? Not only that, we get some instant Karma. Remember
the British taunting of the Jamaican relay team just a
half hour ago? Here, when the Jamaicans blew their baton
they ran into the team in the next lane, knocking them
out, too. That team? The British. Coincidence?
Back in the Water Cube for more semifinal platform diving.
You already know I love the drop cam. You know what I'd love
even more? The drop cam in slow-motion. Every other camera
they use at some point ends up in slow-motion, why not the
drop cam? I think that would be cool. Try it, NBC!
Gleb Galperin, the Russian diver, has the Olympic rings logo
tattooed on his left shoulder. Unfortunately for him, the
wrong (the rings are too close to each other horizontally).
How would you like to have people pointing out your faulty
tattoo for the rest of your life?
More Bolt fluff! Tonight he's racing as one leg of the 4x100m
relay final for Jamaica. Hopefully he's been practicing handing
off the baton. This race, too, is sans Americans.
the favorites make all of the passes! Jamaica wins the
gold and Usain Bolt is a part of another world record.
Back in the studio, Bob tells us that Bolt has had such
a good time in China that he's donating $50,000 to the Red
Cross to help the victims of the Sichuan earthquake. You
might be able to fault Usain for showboating in the 100m
dash, but I think this shows a lot more about
At last, we get to the last leg of the Decathlon, and American
Bryan Clay has an insurmountable lead. Which means he's
around the track and still win the gold medal while everyone
else knocks themselves out going for silver.
Last up tonight, the medal ceremony for decathlon winner
Bryan Clay. Take a look at that! He sings! He
athlete! Okay, he didn't sing all the way through, but
he's a decathlete. He doesn't have to be great at everything.
He just has to be better than most at a lot of different
Coverage was pretty good tonight, but I feel a little ripped
off that the only part of the decathlon we got to watch all
way through was the one event that Bryan Clay didn't even
have to contest. Just one more full day of events! Tune in