Sports

Dreams of red, white, blue and gold

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It’s that time again. The torch has started its path toward Beijing. China is near the end of their extreme home makeover.

The Olympics are here, and since I’m so very proud to be an American I thought I’d tell you what I’m looking forward to most during this summer’s Battle in Beijing.

I have high hopes and expectations for the Dream Team. Well hopes that they show why they got that name years ago.

It’s time for Kobe, King James, ‘Melo and Co. to show the world that the dynasty of dominance that His Airness, Clyde “The Glide” Drexler, and Magic Johnson started, still exists. So what if it took a couple-year hiatus. We’re America, and we’re the best!

OK so maybe that attitude is the reason we are where we are…nah!

The real reason for the recent embarrassments in international competition is simple. Our opponents have gotten better…much better.

Any idea who won the silver in ’92? I didn’t think so.

OK, so I didn’t have a clue either, I Googled it. (The answer is Croatia for whoever might be wondering.)

Can you name anyone from their roster? Well I looked at it and only one thing stood out to me. Well, two things.

First (and the least important), the roster is filled with fancy marks over the c’s and z’s. Dražen Petrović, Žan Tabak and Velimir Perasović were some of the tongue-twisters that filled the roster. Don’t search for those marks on your keyboard, I had to copy and paste them into the article.

The second thing that caught my eye was the name “Toni Kukoč”. I recognize that name! But where from? Ahh yes, he was a bench player for one of Michael Jordan’s teams. Fine I’ll give him a bit more credit; he did win the Sixth Man of the Year Award…a dubious honor if you ask me.

Alright, so back to the topic. Foreign countries are spitting out talent like a bulimic at Thanksgiving dinner.

In 2004 Argentina won the gold medal. They were led by players like Manu Ginobili, Carlos Delfino and Andrés Nocioni. Certainly not names like we’ve got, but they do something we don’t.

They play international basketball as a team.

Our guys like to play street ball. They treat it like an All-Star game (and it is). There is no doubt in my mind that if everybody buys into Coach K’s (Krzyzewski not Karl) game plan, America will once again be known as the Dream Team.

The other main thing I’m excited about for this year’s Olympics is Michael Phelps.

I’m not a huge swimming fan. It takes me 15 minutes to get from one end of the pool to the other. That’s after a 2-minute rest stop, hanging onto the side one-third of the way through, and then another 10 doggie paddles later.

No, I’m not a swimming kind of guy.

But Michael Phelps is dominant!

And best of all, Michael Phelps is American, and he makes me proud to be one too!

He’s a winner. He alone will win more gold medals than half the countries that participate in this year’s games.

So everyone join me, remove your caps and place your hand over your heart. Repeat after me:

I pledge allegiance, to the flag…