Round of Applause
My coverage of the Olympics begins Monday at the NBCOlympics.com office in Stamford. I’ll be in charge of keeping up the volleyball page on the website with live video, highlights, photos, stories, and all sorts of neat stuff. I’ll be watching volleyball matches every day from 4:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. (jealous, right?!) and updating our website accordingly. But don’t worry, I’ll get to watch all sorts of other stuff at the same time (don’t think I’ll be missing any swimming or gymnastics). I’ll do my best to keep y’all updated on how things are going here in my column, but I’ll have to scale myself back just a little bit over the next three weeks because we’ve got a lot to do. I sincerely hope all of you enjoy the Olympics as much as I’m going to, and I’m going to give you everything you need to know about every sport next week, including when all the prime events will be happening and where the United States’ best medal hopes are so you can watch the most exciting events without having to search around for them. It’s going to be pretty compelling to see whether it’s the Americans or Chinese who end up with the most gold medals this time (China won the gold medal count in Beijing; the US won the overall medal count). And we all have to wonder what’s in store for next Friday’s opening ceremony in London. Enjoy it all, because it only happens once every four years (the Winter Olympics are nice, but there’s no comparison between them and the Summer Games).
Chorus of Boos
The 2012 Dream Team is in no way, shape or form better than the 1992 Dream Team. In case you missed the big to-do this week, Kobe Bryant said that this year’s US Olympic basketball team could beat the famed 1992 squad, widely regarded as the best assembly of sports talent in history. I don’t blame Kobe for saying it—I’m sure I’d think the same if I were in his position. But the people hopping on the bandwagon and arguing that this year’s team is better are so far off. Somehow, people seem to forget the frontcourt of the original Dream Team: Karl Malone, David Robinson, Patrick Ewing, and Charles Barkley. This year’s team features Tyson Chandler, Anthony Davis, Kevin Love, and Carmelo Anthony. Unless this year’s team managed to shoot something like 65 percent from the floor, there’s no way it would even come close to the Dream Team because none of these young guys could possibly sniff a rebound near four of the best big men who ever played basketball. This year’s point guards are nice, but there’s no way that they’d get away with the slashing they’re all known for against the Dream Team’s defense. And do you really think Michael Jordan and Scottie Pippen—two of the best defenders of all time—would let any of these guys go off for a big scoring night? Nope. The Dream Team would win by at least 15 points. Too bad we’ll never know.
Friday the 13th was especially awful this time around. I’m not one to be afraid of Friday the 13th (friggatriskaidekaphobia, of course) but it got to the point last weekend that I was simply praying to make it to Monday. On Friday morning, my hard drive decided to crash. Of course, this happened about a week before I was planning on backing up my entire disk. If there was a silver lining, though, it was the fact that somehow I had seven days left on my three-year warranty. I also had a fantastic guy from Staples recover most of my files from the crashed hard drive at a pretty nominal price. But just when I thought I was out of the clear, my phone decided that its power button, camera, and ability to receive calls were going to stop working. But again, I was able to cash in on my upgrade and solve that problem. I figured I was finally out of the woods when my iPod put on a friendly red screen of death. I had nothing left to do but laugh. Somehow, I got that thing working again and life is now back to normal. I could have had a much worse weekend with much more severe problems, clearly, but boy, what an obstacle course that was.