I'll keep the roundup simple. I learned numerous valuable lessons today while watching the Olympics:
There is near round the clock coverage between NBC, USA, and MSNBC. There is at least one channel airing Olympic events from 2 am until 7 pm, and again from 8 pm to midnight.
Of course, not all of the coverage is live, so you may at some point do like I did. In channel surfing back and forth, I pit-stopped on ESPN just long enough to accidentally see the final score of the U.S. women's soccer game on the ticker, thus defeating the purpose of me switching back to MSNBC to watch the game.
Diana Taurasi is a monster. Granted, the US women's basketball team is now what the original Dream Team was in the '90s, and this was a game against the Czech Republic, but it was impressive. The woman was faking people off the dribble, driving by them, and scoring just about whenever she felt like it, ripping off 13 points and three assists in the first half before sitting most of the rest of the game.
The women's volleyball team has to play better than they did today if they expect to contend for a medal. Sloppy passing kept them scrambling most of the day, and having regular kills blocked by a Japanese team whose second tallest player would be your shortest is unacceptable.
Oh, that final score I stumbled on was women's soccer beating Japan 1-0. They didn't look as lost as the volleyball team, but they still looked a far cry from a team that could win a medal. More work to be done there, as well.
Lastly, if you ever get a bit bored, Olympic badminton is absolutely awesome. It's tennis, but with a higher net, a smaller court, and a lighter and faster ball (the shuttle). It almost looks like fencing, especially when each serve is from about five feet away from your opponent. I'll admit it, I'm addicted.
The US also filled the medal podium for the women's sabre category of fencing, and all three ladies look young enough that they could well do it again in four years.
That Michael Phelps kid is ready, I guess. Newly without his moustache (taking a page from the Jason Giambi program perhaps), Phelps downshifted at the end and still set a new Olympic record in winning his qualifying heat, then cruised to gold in the 400IM final, breaking his old world record by almost two full seconds.
Saturday also saw bronze in the women's 400IM for Katie Hoff and a silver for the women's 4×100 IM relay team, anchored by one 41-year-old Dara Torres (who turned in the second-fastest 100m in the entire field).
Tune in tomorrow morning for the results from our remaining 'elite' squads, including soccer (against the heavily favored Dutch) and basketball (against the Chinese team — I hear they have an NBA player or two on their squad).