Posted July 28, 2012 on
AP on Fox
The Americans need Jordyn Wieber to regain her swagger in a hurry if they're going to hold off Russia for Olympic gold.
The two gymnastic powers have been trading places in team competition for two years and will face off again on the biggest stage for an Olympic title Tuesday night.
The Russians won the world championship in 2010, then finished second to the U.S. last year.
Defending world champ Wieber failed to qualify for the all-around competition at the London Olympics, but the U.S. women will be depending on her for a comeback if they're going to win their first team gold medal since the ''Magnificent Seven'' of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
''We're going to have to cheer her up and hype her up,'' teammate Gabby Douglas said.
After failing to qualify for the all-around, the 17-year-old Wieber sobbed and was consoled by teammates. She didn't speak to reporters afterward.
Later, she posted on Twitter: ''I am so proud of our team today and I can't wait for team finals!!''
O2 Arena has rocked so far, and with host nation Britain in the mix after missing the team final at the 2008 Beijing Games, the scene should be even more festive -- especially after the British captured their first Olympic team gymnastics medal in more than 80 years with a bronze in Monday's men's competition.
Now, it's Wieber and Douglas' turn to chase that elusive American team gold and try to accomplish something the Nastia Liukin-Shawn Johnson show of 2008 couldn't in Beijing, where China captured gold on its home turf.
Former world champion Aliya Mustafina and the focused Russians were the only squad to come close to challenging the U.S. team after Sunday's qualifying.
And they're so determined to beat the Americans, Russia's athletes blew through the mixed zone without even speaking to their own reporters. The word is they won't be heard from until the job is done.
In other action Tuesday, Michael Phelps is back for a busy night in the pool as he seeks a third straight gold in the 200-meter butterfly. Then Phelps, Ryan Lochte & Co. will try to bounce back in the 4x200-meter freestyle relay after settling for a surprising silver behind the winning Frenchmen in the 4x100-meter freestyle relay Sunday.
In gymnastics, the U.S. women's team will look to reach the top spot on the podium a day after the American men's team finished a disappointed fifth. The Romanians also are expected to challenge for a medal.
"We've definitely set the bar higher,'' Douglas said. ''It's just an amazing feeling to know that Team USA is definitely strong. Even myself, we've come a long way.''
While the U.S. dominated team qualifying Sunday with a score of 181.863, the Russians are determined to keep closing the gap with the world watching. Mustafina didn't compete in the 2011 worlds because she injured her left knee at the European Championships that April -- and now she's back but still trying to regain top form. Her vault, for example, is a less difficult one than what she performed when she got hurt.
The U.S. gymnasts consider the gold theirs for the taking after all the strides their program has made in recent years.
''I guarantee one thing: The truth is going to come out on the Olympic Games,'' said the renowned coach Bela Karolyi. ''The truth is that we are solidly in the first place on the team, no question about that.''
The Americans aren't ready to celebrate anything yet. Everything changed in a matter of minutes Monday night, when Japan jumped from fourth to a silver medal after a protest and bumped the Ukraine right off the podium.
''The Olympics are always a dog fight,'' USA Gymnastics president Steve Penny said. ''There is something that always pops up and changes the perceived outcome. Something happens and it changes it.''
BEST OF MAXIM
Last night had to have been a tough one. Not only did she fail to qualify for her lifelong dream, the entire world was watching her every move. Even when she wasn’t moving. Do we classify this...
[[ Read More ]]
There is no joy in saying this to a 17-year-old whose entire world has just come crashing down around her, but it must be said because too much rests on her hearing it: Jordyn Wieber, US-gymnastics anointed star who failed Sunday to qualify for the all-around finals, needs to get over it.
Perhaps her coach, John Geddert, has already impressed upon Wieber that her country...
The coach of reigning world champion Jordyn Wieber says it's an ''injustice'' the American won't be included in Thursday's Olympic all-around finals.
Wieber finished fourth during qualifying Sunday, but will miss a shot at Olympic gold because international rules only allow two competitors per country in the finals.
Teammates Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas...
The Americans breezed through qualifying in women's gymnastics Sunday, throwing down a challenge to Russia, Romania and defending Olympic champion China in the process.
For Jordyn Wieber, there won' be a chance to add an Olympic gold medal to a world title.
The Americans finished with 181.863 points and have a big lead atop the standings, though the Russians, 2010 world...
Shortly after failing to qualify for the individual all-around finals, the face of USA Gymnastics walked unsteadily past the media. Jordyn Wieber walked with wide eyes, steered by a handler, past her teammates, including the two who had replaced her in an event she was expected to dominate. Even then the tears would not stop.
Aly Raisman, who came from nowhere to vault ahead of...
Defending world champion in gymnastics all-around, Jordyn Wieber, has failed to qualify for the finals and will not medal.
Wieber only finished third out of the US team and, per Olympic rules, a country can only carry two members for the individual all-around finals.
Aly Raisman and Gabby Douglas will represent the Americans in the event. Raisman was surprised that she learned...
Day two of the London Olympics is in the books. Sure many of our watching our Female Gymnasts on Qualification day on the TV (paying special attention to Michigan Native Jordyn Wieber of course), but for the most part the day has come to an end. We still have yet to see the men’s relay team on TV, but for those of us who have been following the games full time over the past few...
Best gymnast in the world in 2012 just got outclutch'd by a teammate. If only Raisman could have released Walter White's "I Won" at the end of the NBC interview. [Follow me @TravisHouser]
PS - Have to believe the judges based their points on looks in the end.
There they stood Thursday, teammates in the quest for Olympic team gold but competitors for the hearts of Americans and the prestige and dollars those hearts can deliver, each talking in candid terms about the other.
As the US women's gymnastics team prepares for Sunday's highly anticipated start -- with an Olympic squad as poised for gold as any other to have come before...
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="300"] English: Deng Linlin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)[/caption]
After watching the Olympic Games over the weekend, I became very upset and disappointed in hearing about a certain rule during the Women’s Gymnastics competition. There are some stipulations to the rules/competition format that need to be addressed...
-So who suffered the bigger disappointment: Nastia Liukin or Jordyn Wieber? Both are devastating in their own right. But comment below who you think had/has it worse. If one more face of the U.S. women’s gymnastics suffers an elimination setback…you could start comparing them to Iowa Hawkeyes tailbacks.
-staying with gymnastics, I’ve seen Twitter chatter about McKayla Maroney...