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London Olympics TV Coverage Thread

Discussion in 'Now Playing - TV Show Talk' started by Marco, Jul 25, 2012.

  1. Aug 6, 2012 #381 of 691
    That Don Guy

    That Don Guy Now with more GB

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    Unlike with swimming, where they can determine the times immediately because of the touchpads, in track & field, the times have to be determined "manually" by "some guys" looking at the photo-finish camera results and lining up their torsos to the time indicators along the top/bottom. It takes longer if two or more runners finish close together, even if it is for seventh place. They can't list "official" results until they determine all of the places and times, and then wait to see if any official called for a disqualification (a lesson you would think the officials in track cycling would have learned).
     
  2. Aug 6, 2012 #382 of 691
    murgatroyd

    murgatroyd Don't stop believin'

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    Note to Dan Patrick. If you find yourself saying "I just couldn't resist," that's a sure sign that the joke is dumb and you should have resisted.
     
  3. Aug 6, 2012 #383 of 691
    Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey

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    I have no argument about Phelps, I'm just putting it out there, if he's not who is? Here's the argument for Phelps that I see. It's not that he got all those medals, it's that he's been the dominant swimmer for 3 straight Olympics.

    I would add Carl Lewis Al Orter to the list of greatest. Louganis is there as well. Teofolo Stephenson, the Cuban boxer, and IRC isn't there a Cross Country skiier who's one multiple medals over more than one Olympics?
     
  4. Aug 6, 2012 #384 of 691
    whitson77

    whitson77 Active Member

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    Kevin Durant has the best shot on the planet. Good lord!!
     
  5. Aug 6, 2012 #385 of 691
    aindik

    aindik Well-Known Member

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    Is anyone's cable company carrying the NBC Basketball or Soccer channels in SD? My BIL doesn't have an HDTV or an HD cable box and would like to watch Team USA replays. I suppose I could direct him to On Demand, but let's be charitable and say he might not be able to figure it out.
     
  6. Aug 6, 2012 #386 of 691
    DevdogAZ

    DevdogAZ Give em Hell, Devils

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    And I'm not trying to diminish Phelp's accomplishment's either. Obviously he's incredible. If he's not the greates Olympian ever, he's definitely among the best.

    I'm simply pointing out that swimming is unique in that it affords an athlete the opportunity to compete for several medals, whereas the vast majority of Olympic athletes come to the Games with the opportunity to only go for one medal. If other sports offered athletes the chance to earn that many medals in a single Games, I don't think it would be so rare for the very best to earn 5+ medals in one meet. It's only because swimming is unique, and that Phelps is the best among swimmers, that his feat is unequaled.
     
  7. Aug 6, 2012 #387 of 691
    aindik

    aindik Well-Known Member

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    There's a difference between it being extremely difficult to win six medals at a single Olympics, and it being literally impossible unless you participate in more than one sport.

    There is only one medal in lots of sports. Tennis, equestrian, the team sports. Or one per weight class: weightlifting, boxing, wrestling.

    Let's say some wrestler dominates at 3 Olympics in a row. You know how many gold medals he has? 3. He'd have to dominate for 80 years to get 20 gold medals.

    What if Lebron James leads Team USA to gold in 2012, 2016, and 2020 (when he'll be 36 years old). He'll have 4 golds and a bronze. Might he be the greatest ever?

    But that's only 5 medals. Phelps has 20.
     
  8. Aug 6, 2012 #388 of 691
    pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    I only see them in the guide in HD.
     
  9. Aug 6, 2012 #389 of 691
    cmontyburns

    cmontyburns Excellent.

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    I'm not really taking sides in the "greatest ever" debate (although I do think Phelps has to be among the top two or three), but to continue the discussion:

    Sure, some people are making it all about medal count. But if you want to reduce the importance of medal count for reasons like you are saying, I think his case still holds up. Consider, for example, medals per opportunity instead.

    Phelps has 22 medals, but I think one of them in Athens came from swimming in the qualifying heats of the IM but not in the finals (and he was selected for the finals, but bowed out in deference to his teammate). So call it 21 medals to be generous to the contrary case. I believe he swam 7 events in Athens other than the relay, and made it to the finals in all 7; 8 events in Beijing, and of course made it to the finals of all 8 there; and 7 in London, again making the finals of each of them.

    So that's 22 events total in which he could have medaled and 21 medals earned in response. Of those 21, the vast majority, 17, are gold. 2 are silver, and 2 bronze. (All of that leaves out the Athens relay.)

    Even though he may have had more chances than athletes in other sports, that's still an overwhelming winning percentage -- and in a very grueling sport, where, as we have seen, winning can happen by the slimmest of margins. His lack of failure at the Olympics over time is incredible. He has to be on the very short list of the best Olympians of all time.

    (This doesn't even get into the numerous Olympic and world records, the fact that he is the first swimmer to win the same event at three consecutive Olympics [more than once, now], and other details.)
     
  10. Aug 6, 2012 #390 of 691
    murgatroyd

    murgatroyd Don't stop believin'

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    Minor correction to the statement quoted above.

    For tennis and equestrian you could have more than one. Tennis: one for singles, one for doubles, and (possibly) mixed doubles.

    For equestrian:

    eventing: one team, one individual
    show jumping: one team, one individual
    dressage: one team, one individual

    This is the tenth Olympic appearance for Canadian rider (show jumping) Ian Millar. Wikipedia says that of the 2008 games, his nine appearances were the most for any equestrian, and matched the record for most appearances in an Olympics.

    Millar's team won the silver medal in 2008. I submit that if there had been an equestrian with Millar's longevity who had won a medal at each of his/her Olympic games, this would be a FAR more impressive feat than what Phelps has done. Note that in the equestrian events, men and women compete against each other equally, so there is only one individual medal per discipline, not two as there would be in swimming, tennis, running, etc.

    Again, I mean no disrespect for what Phelps has been able to do, but please, let's celebrate the fact that he is the most decorated, and also great, but not automatically exclude from "greatness" all the athletes from other sports who only have the chance to compete in one or two events per Olympiad.
     
  11. Aug 6, 2012 #391 of 691
    Stephen Tu

    Stephen Tu Active Member

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    Nah, I think there are a number of players with a better shot than KD. E.g. Ray Allen. It's KD's size and long arms, combined with a very good but not "the best" shot, that makes him unguardable. He can just effortlessly shoot over just about anyone quick enough to attempt to check him at the 3-pt line, so when his shot is falling it's a total nightmare for the other team.
     
  12. Aug 6, 2012 #392 of 691
    cmontyburns

    cmontyburns Excellent.

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    Now that we've all agreed Phelps is the best Olympian in history ;), let's talk commentators.

    Who are you liking and who do you wish would never appear on your TV again? Being a cord-cutter, I'm only treated to who appears on NBC's main channel, but here are a few thoughts:

    Swimming (Dan Hicks / Rowdy Gaines): Probably my favorite pair. I think Hicks calls an exciting race, and while I know that Gaines has his detractors, I think he does a good job with technical analysis and I actually like how excited he gets during races.

    Diving (Ted Robinson / Cynthia Potter): Probably my second favorite pair. Potter's analysis is excellent, and Robinson makes an affable partner. They may get some benefit of the doubt because NBC edits the diving telecasts so very tightly; it's impossible to know what the duo does with the time that actually elapses between dives.

    Gymnastics (Al Trautwig / Tim Daggett / Elfi Schlegel): Trautwig would be good enough if he would stick to play-by-play and setting up his analysts, but he doesn't, so he is tough to take. I like Daggett, chiefly because he comes really, really prepared and sets us up well for what to look for in such a quickly-moving sport. Schlegel is usually just kind of there.

    Indoor volleyball (Dunno / Dunno): I don't like this duo very much. They call a technically proficient game as far as I can tell, but they just don't bring any oomph to it.

    Beach volleyball (Dunno / Dunno): Decent duo. I like how the analyst will explain from time to time the nuances of playmaking in beach volleyball that make it distinct from conventional volleyball -- helping the viewer understand what they are looking at. The commentator sometimes acts like he is Misty May's and Kerri Walsh's best friend (calling them by their first names usually, where everyone else is called by their last), but hey, I wish I were their best friend, too.

    Track and field (Tom Hammond / Ato Boldin / Dunno for field events): As far as I can tell, Hammond is a very good track play-by-play guy, but for the most part the T&F events don't interest me much so I don't really enjoy listening to him. Same for Boldin. I do like the guy that does the analysis for the field events, but those are usually edited so heavily that it's hard to get a real sense for how good he actually is.

    Water polo (Dunno / Dunno): I don't like this pair. I don't think they call a very exciting game, and they never explain anything. I'm always watching and wondering why something is or isn't a foul, what some of the basic rules are, etc. The vast majority of their viewers don't see this sport except at the Olympics, but these announcers don't give any help to the viewers in understanding what they are watching.

    Chime in on these or any others you like or hate!
     
  13. Aug 7, 2012 #393 of 691
    MauriAnne

    MauriAnne Mostly lurking

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    The field guy is Dwight Stones, who was a high jumper when I was in high school in the 70's and also high jumped. He knows what he's talking about but they only show such small snippets of field events, it's hard to tell how he'd do if he had to fill dead space between events.

    Cynthia Potter is technically very good in diving. but something about her voice gets on my nerves big time.
     
  14. Aug 7, 2012 #394 of 691
    murgatroyd

    murgatroyd Don't stop believin'

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    I'm still holding out for Greg Louganis, who has been in four Olympics and had double golds in two of them, but whatever.

    I like Rowdy too, but sometimes I wish I had a yell-o-meter to see how excited he gets. Who would get the gold medal, Rowdy, or Scotty Hamilton (figure skating)? ;)

    Yeah, she's a little bit shrill, and she over-articulates stuff, but I like Potter's analysis a lot.

    I like Daggett. If a great hole opened up in the earth and swallowed Trautwig, so he would be off somewhere doing some sport I didn't watch, that would be okay by me. I wish there were an analyst for gymnastics as good as Potter is for diving. IMHO Schelgel isn't it.

    I chalked it up not to 'acting like he is their best friend' but rather that it is much easier to call a shot if he is using their first names rather than the hyphenated last names they are both using now. If I had his job, I'd be calling them Misty and Kerri, too. ;)

    I like Boldin. I could be biased because I like his accent, but he seems to be doing a good job. I haven't found myself asking questions that Boldin hasn't answered yet.

    Cycling: Paul Sherwin is one of my favorite analysts. Period. His partners Steve Schlanger (Road) and Todd Harris (Track) are okay. I haven't heard Harris much because I haven't seen very much of the track cycling. Schlanger seemed less annoying during the road races here than he used to be on Universal Sports.

    Weightlifting (Jim Watson/ Shane Hamman): Weightlifting is a real pleasure to watch because of these guys. They talk enough but never too much, and I never feel they haven't told me something I need to know. And listening to Shane Hamman is just fun.

    Tennis: Really really enjoyed hearing John McEnroe's commentary during tennis, and all the "what event did you see" pieces he has done throughout the games. My #1 pick for tennis analysis.

    Synchronized Swimming: I have to give a special shout-out to Randy Moss here. He is obviously totally out of his element here, but he's doing his best to understand what his analyst Heather Olson is talking about, to prompt her to explain some basic stuff for the people who don't follow synchro, and to convey just how much athleticism is involved, all without stepping on Olson. His work on Canoeing has been good, too.

    My yardstick for commentators and analysts is simple: would I want to be sitting next to them at the event, or have them over to my place to watch. Apolo Ono, John McEnroe, Randy Moss, and Paul Sherwin can come over to my place anytime.

    The person I'd most like to see here, who isn't? Especially doing a gig like Apolo Ono or McEnroe? Bob Roll.
     
  15. Aug 7, 2012 #395 of 691
    cmontyburns

    cmontyburns Excellent.

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    I didn't even think to list Mac because he calls every major tennis event everywhere. :) Agreed that he is the tops at it -- just great to listen to. I especially enjoy when he and Mary Carillo call a match together.
     
  16. Aug 7, 2012 #396 of 691
    Amnesia

    Amnesia The Question

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    Paul Sunderland / Kevin Wong. Sunderland was an indoor volleyball Olympian (gold medalist) and Wong was a professional beach volleyball player for over 15 years.

    In beach volleyball, it's not uncommon to be called by your first name. The commentators also refer to the Brazilian duo of Larissa Franca and Juliana Silva as "Larissa and Juliana".
     
  17. Aug 7, 2012 #397 of 691
    Steveknj

    Steveknj Lost in New Joisey

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    It's interesting about the water polo. Mike "Doc" Emerick is probably the best hockey pxp man in the world. I think he's fine doing water polo (a similar sport in some respects, but he definitely lacks the the enthusiasm he has for hockey. The live interviewer is Pierre McGuire who is also a hockey guy.
     
  18. Aug 7, 2012 #398 of 691
    pdhenry

    pdhenry Safety Pin

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    I thought I was hearing a hockey game being called...
     
  19. Aug 7, 2012 #399 of 691
    aindik

    aindik Well-Known Member

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    I only caught a bit of water polo, which I only watched in the first place because Doc Emerick was calling it. He sounds bored, but also his analysts need to seriously STFU and let the guy do his thing. He's one of the best in the world.

    It sounds like someone told him not to scream "and a SHOT" like he does in hockey. And he calls a goal with "goal" instead of "score," which also sounds deliberate (and not as good).
     
  20. Aug 7, 2012 #400 of 691
    cmontyburns

    cmontyburns Excellent.

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    Again... :p
     

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