Olympics 2012: Five events you shouldn’t miss

Usain Bolt

There are always a handful of marquee events at each Olympics which capture the entire country’s attention.

Some are easy to predict — like Michael Phelps and the U.S. swimming team’s epic 4×100-meter freestyle relay win over France. Some, like the men’s volleyball team’s gold medal performance weeks after their coach’s father-in-law was murdered in Beijing, took the public completely by surprise.
Metro takes a look at some of the bigger events in London and tries to pin down a few you will remember.

Men’s 200m IM
The biggest rivalry of the games could actually come from a pair of teammates — U.S. swimmers Ryan Lochte and Michael Phelps.

The men’s 200-meter individual medley will be the showdown between the two unquestioned best all-around swimmers in the world. It’s 50 meters each of butterfly, back, breast and freestyle. The two were clear of the field by three seconds at the 2011 World Championships, where Lochte won. But Phelps is the defending gold medalist.

Women’s soccer
Abby Wambach, Hope Solo and Alex Morgan burst onto the sports scene last summer during the Women’s World Cup. They became media darlings almost overnight.

Just one problem — they didn’t win. Japan took the Cup and left the defending Olympic champion Americans feeling hollow. Now they can make up for that and reclaim the glory of Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy and Brandi Chastain. Brazil will be good, but the U.S. would love to get revenge on Japan.

Men’s 100-meter
What if I told you Usain Bolt isn’t even the fastest man in his own country anymore?

In case you missed it last month, the reigning gold medalist and world record holder lost in the Jamaican Olympic trials to Yohan Blake. And it wasn’t particularly close.

Blake won the World Championships last year too, but with the caveat of Bolt having faulted and been disqualified. All of this sets up what could well be the best 100-meter contest since Ben Johnson vs. Carl Lewis in the 1988 games. (Let’s hope it doesn’t end the same way.)

Speaking of steroids, don’t forget American Justin Gatlin, the 2004 gold medalist returning from a drug ban.

Women’s all-around
The name to know in women’s gymnastics this year is the United States’ Jordyn Wieber. She is the reigning all-around World Champion and the one America’s hopes rest on. There’s no more Shawn Johnson and no more Nastia Liukin, who took this crown in 2008 in a heated competition between her teammate Johnson and China’s Yang Yilin.

Remember the incessant age controversy about China’s athletes in 2008 that created an intense rivalry? Well, the U.S. would like to win again — and a win in the team all-around would be nice too. Russia’s Viktoria Komova could steal gold from Wieber also.

Men’s basketball
We don’t know if the U.S. men’s basketball team will appear in the game, obviously, but there is a good chance. And we’re really looking forward to the epic rematch of 2008’s gold medal game between them and Spain.

You know the U.S. team’s roster — LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Durant and a handful of other All-Stars. The one thing they don’t have? Size.

That what makes a potential matchup with Spain so intriguing. They have three of the best centers in the league with Pau Gasol, Marc Gasol and Oklahoma City’s blocking machine Serge Ibaka. Let’s hope it gets physical.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
News

OMG! Exercise can make skin (and butt) look…

A moderate exercise regime can turn back time and actually reverse the skin's aging process, according to new research. The study showed that a minimum…

News

Mets mascot Mr. Met target of Bill Clinton…

Mets mascot Mr. Met has told how he ended up in the crosshairs of a Secret Service sniper rifle. The man behind the Mr. Met…

International

Jews in eastern Ukraine ordered to register, Kerry…

Secretary of State John Kerry condemned reports that Jews in eastern Ukraine had been ordered to register with the authorities "or suffer the consequences."

National

Chelsea Clinton pregnant with first child

Chelsea Clinton is pregnant with her first child.

Television

'Scandal' recap: Season 3, Episode 18, 'The Price…

Sally is Jesus, Olivia caused global warming, and Mellie's still drunk. Let's recap the Scandal finale. A church full of Washington insiders is about to…

Movies

Review: 'Transcendence' is not stupid but sometimes lacks…

The cyberthriller "Transcendence" explores artificial intelligence, nanotechnology and other ethical quandaries, but has too much ambition, if anything.

Television

Dick Wolf to bring fictionalized world of 'Law…

A&E has ordered a pilot called "D.O.A." from "Law and Order" mastermind Dick Wolf that will focus on real detectives reexamining cold cases. A trio…

Television

Shane West talks WGN America's 'Salem'

The actor on history lessons, a new network and showing his butt.

MLB

MLB video highlights: Red Sox score two in…

Lester shines in Red Sox win over White Sox

Sports

2014 Boston Marathon preview: Elite American, International runners…

2014 Boston Marathon: Elite American, International runners to watch

NBA

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams…

2014 NBA Finals odds: Ranking which playoff teams have the best shot at a championship. The Thunder, Clippers, Heat and Rockets lead the way.

NFL

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

2014 Patriots, full NFL schedule release date announced

Style

Light-up nail art syncs with phone

This Japanese technology syncs light-up nail art with your phone.

Wellbeing

Why is dance cardio taking off in NYC?

Instructors at some of the city's hottest classes explain why.

Travel

Earth Day travel in the Florida Keys

See why this eco-friendly destination deserves your attention.

Tech

Sorry, Facebook — FarmVille goes mobile with 'Country…

Zynga has released a version of the hit "FarmVille" tailored for smartphones and tablets in the hope of reaping a bumper crop of players.