The US Olympic medal table

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  1. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by hullexile:
    Funding elite athletes who then achieve success encourages youngsters to get into sport so is worthwhile on that basis alone IMO.
    I completely agree. Achievement on the sporting field inspires so many kids who grow up with dreams of doing the same. It's especially important to kids from underpriviliged backgrounds for whom sport might well be the only way out. It might well be one of the better uses of public money.

  2. #32

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    Quote Originally Posted by aussiegal:
    I completely agree. Achievement on the sporting field inspires so many kids who grow up with dreams of doing the same. It's especially important to kids from underpriviliged backgrounds for whom sport might well be the only way out. It might well be one of the better uses of public money.
    Yes, you can see the effect when someone does well in a particular sport, suddenly everyone is doing it. I would rather have elite athletes as role models than pop stars.

    I was once an elite athlete - but by mistake. In a marathon they mucked up my best time and put me as number 20 out of several thousand. Kept up with the elite runners for the first 10 miles but died in the last half not surprisingly.

  3. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by timklip:
    Mainly because of where it happened, the political climate and who was covering it (NBC). If you would ask a Puerto Rican to name the greatest upset in the history of team sports, they'd probably say Athens 04 when PR beat the Dream Team in hoops...its all about perspective
    That's not even remotely close to the same thing and certainly not the stuff of movies!!! The US team was in shambles having had a whole revamp of the 2003 team that competed at the FIBA championship. They also got beaten by Lithuania and then by Argentina. By then many countries were fielding NBA players in their national teams. The equivalent upset of the 1976 Olympics in ice hockey would have been for the 1992 US basketball team to lose to anyone in the gold medal match...

  4. #34

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    Quote Originally Posted by hullexile:
    I would rather have elite athletes as role models than pop stars.
    Well that's certainly a debatable point but I'd say most olympics athletes are probably better role models than most pop stars. Still, it's a pretty sad society that glorifies the likes of Mike Tyson, Kobe Bryant, Michael Jackson and Tom Cruise over people who actually make a significant contribution to society. Around 21% of NFL players have committed serious felonies. Ask 100 random people to name any Nobel Prize winner of the last three years...you'll be lucky to get one name and that might be Al Gore!

  5. #35

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    Quote Originally Posted by hullexile:
    Yes, you can see the effect when someone does well in a particular sport, suddenly everyone is doing it. I would rather have elite athletes as role models than pop stars.
    Agree again particularly in today's climate of manufactured success. These days it's clearly a case of who you know, or 'who you know', in the biblical sense or how lucky you got. Remember when musicians actually sang songs live and wrote their own music.

    Now kids look up to people like Paris Hilton and Lindsay Lohen. Kate Moss is seen and admits to doing coke and is now earning more than ever. Marion Jones in the meantime is in jail.

    At least when it comes to athletes you know they have earnt their place at the table. You don't get to be a professional athlete without serious commitment to your sport. So what if some are felons, it's a numbers thing, some are bound to be. Athletes come from all walks of life, they are not all going to be perfect. Doesn't mean you revere those particular athletes, you pick and choose your heros.

  6. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by gilleshk:
    Well that's certainly a debatable point but I'd say most olympics athletes are probably better role models than most pop stars. Still, it's a pretty sad society that glorifies the likes of Mike Tyson, Kobe Bryant, Michael Jackson and Tom Cruise over people who actually make a significant contribution to society. Around 21% of NFL players have committed serious felonies. Ask 100 random people to name any Nobel Prize winner of the last three years...you'll be lucky to get one name and that might be Al Gore!
    yes I guess by elite athletes I was not thinking of the highly paid professionals like football (soccer) or NFL players. Oh and I have never heard of the ice hockey event you were talking about, only news in North America I would imagine.

  7. #37

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    Well if you don't follow the winter olympics, I wouldn't expect you would have heard. You can bet your knickers that all of Russia remembers...


  8. #38

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    my point exactly..thanks hull...the 'Miracle on Ice" is a non-event everywhere except the US, Canada and probably Russia...and it was a round robin game that they won, NOT the gold medal game, and it was 1980, NOT 1976, and the US Dream Team in Athens was no more a shambles than the team from this year, simply another group of stars and up-and comers who thought they could walk all over PR (sounds like the Russkies against Team Miracle!) guys like Carmelo Anthony, LeBron James, Tim Duncan and Allen Iverson. The difference is this year, they've followed up a series of ass kickings in every major comp of the last 4 years and are seriously embarrassed.

    Here's a wiki quote to underscore the significance of the game: It was only the third Olympic basketball defeat EVER for Team USA and the second for an American team composed of professionals (the first one being against Argentina two years before). The 19 point defeat was the most lopsided loss for Team USA in the history of international competition...

    But relax Gilles...if the Miracle was THAT important to you, so be it...all I'm saying is outside of the US, NOBODY CARES


  9. #39

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    Never heard of it. Now I would say one of the greatest sporting moments would have been this year's Wimbledon final, Nadal vs Federer. But as others have pointed out, it's all a matter of perspective, we will never reach agreement on the biggest sporting moment. For many Aussies Cathy Freeman winning gold at the Sydney Olympics would be a stand out moment.


  10. #40

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    besides that, hockey is full of upsets, very often the result of hot goaltending, certainly the case in Lake Placid, where Jim Craig kept the US in the game tho they were outshot 39-16...they certainly didn't dominate the Russians by any means, just scored at the right time and held on to win..the rest is NBC inspired history...


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