A Benchwarmer’s Perspective: Forget Boston; Watch the Olympics

By Hank Winton ’13

Well, I look like an idiot. I said some things, some things I did not mean. I am sorry, Celtics. I am sorry for calling you old and tired. I am sorry for saying you were not going to win anything. I am sorry for saying that the Celtics’ dream was over. As I write this, the Celtics have just won the Eastern quarterfinals in an impressive fashion beating the Atlantic Hawks. The team obviously read my column and is now seeking vengeance by playing better and harder to spite me. In a way, the Celtics’ recent resurgence is partially (completely) thanks to me because they won to prove me wrong and make me look bad.

Now, the Bruins… I said the Bruins had a strong chance of winning the Stanley Cup, but now they are golfing, and I am apologizing. I should have known that just because I toiled in the boiler room of JV puck last year does not give me the right to start making extravagant predictions.

I am sorry, Bruins fans. I jinxed it and I take full responsibility for the Bruins loss, but at least we have the Celtics… uh-oh, I did it again.

I am going to take a step back from Boston sports. I feel that my words are just too powerful right now, and I do not want to upset the balance of the already turbulent Boston sports scene. Rather, I am going to extend my power internationally, to the biggest sporting event in the world: the Olympics.

The Olympics this summer will be held in London for the first time in 64 years. England is known for accents, Harry Potter, and losing the Revolutionary War. I love the Olympics, not only for the usual reasons, like seeing all of the great athletes, teams, and matches, but also because I am extremely excited to watch the wide array of random and interesting sports. Some of my favorites include synchronized swimming, race walking, pommel horse, and crew. The Olympics encompasses all that is good in my life: watching TV, lounging on the couch, and not being in school. The Summer Olympics means vacation is here, and rather than sitting at school, sleeping with my eyes open, I can sit on my couch and watch people do awesome stuff.

Jamaica’s track star Usain Bolt is almost unbeatable and poses an exciting match for the US. If the US wants to rival Bolt, they need to take the North Korean approach and start threatening lives. But, since the US seems unlikely to raise the stakes on all of their athletes to that extreme, the next-best option is Tyson Gay. Gay is the best US male sprinter and the US’s only chance at beating the unstoppable Bolt. Gay has beaten Bolt only once, in the 100-meter dash in 2010, after he did not qualify for the 100-meter in Beijing in 2008 due to a hamstring injury. It would be legendary if Gay were able to dethrone the current king of the sport and bring gold back to the US.

An athlete I am super-psyched to watch this summer is Michael Phelps. In Beijing, Phelps made for some seriously awesome TV. Even amid all the craziness of the competition, Michael Phelps was able to stay calm, relaxed and not let the pressure get to him… oooh. If Phelps can remember to show up on time and not get the munchies, he will have a strong chance at adding to his already-high gold medal count.

The US Men’s Basketball team is incredible—too incredible. Watching them play is amusing because they are just so much better then everyone else. The 27-man roster has 16 2012 NBA All Stars and nine returning players from the 2008 Gold Medal Team. Watching the US team play is like watching a bunch of toddlers school the BB&N Boys Basketball Team (not like I could do any better, though). It is just not fair. The US team’s strength is not a testament to the other countries’ teams being bad, but more to the US being unfairly good. The US men’s team should be handicapped 20 points, have to pass the ball five times before shooting, use their off-hand to score, or do something else to give the other teams a shot.

I know at this point that I am untrustworthy and unreliable. I backed the Bruins and bashed the Celtics, and now I look like an idiot. But I am staying away from jinxing and ruining Boston sports… for now. I will avoid single-handedly destroying the sports teams you all love. Rather, I strongly suggest that this summer, when you are not doing your summer reading, getting a jump-start on homework, or starting your college apps, you sit down and watch people from all corners of the world gather together to compete and represent their countries.


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