Matthew Kitchen, NBC Olympics
We’re hoping at least half the people reading this cranked up the Lovin’ Spoonful’s “Summer in the City” this weekend while cooking out, laying out, going out, or passing out (responsibly) this weekend. We’re less than weeks away from the Summer Games, so everyone is deep in training, but here’s a few stories to whet your appetite for Olympics news.
Both the men’s and women’s US representatives had big weekends, with Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings winning their first tournament in 11 months with gold in Gstaad. It obviously couldn’t have come at a better time, since the duo is preparing to defend back-to-back Olympics titles.
“We played very well in this tournament, especially against the Dutch team,” Walsh Jennings told USA Today. “Now we will go home and practice on things that will make is even better for London.”
The surprise pair of Jake Gibb and Sean Rosenthal might be setting themselves up as darkhorse favorites in London. They won a Grand Slam in Rome a few weekends ago to secure their spot in the Games and then joined their female counterparts with a win this weekend. They took out reigning world champions, Emanuel Rego and Alison Cerutti of Brazil, as well as American favorites Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser, who won gold in Beijing in the process. Those teams will be the top two seeds at the Summer Games.
The USA basketball roster was finalized over the weekend, with Blake Griffin, Andre Iguodala, and James Harden earning the final five spots on a loaded team that already includes the likes of Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, and Kevin Durant.
“The final selections keep us in concert with our game plan to have athleticism, versatility and strong depth on our roster,” USA basketball director Jerry Colangelo said Saturday. “I think our final roster epitomizes all of that.”
The bad news out of Vegas is that Chris Paul sprained his right thumb one day one of practice. He participated in all non-contact drills, but sat out scrimmages. He’s wearing a protective splint, but should be fine by the time the Games roll around.
Track and Field
US sprinting teammates Justin Gatlin and Tyson Gay squared off in Paris this weekend, with Gay, who placed second to Gatlin in the 100m at Trials, getting the best of his compatriot this time. He ran 9.99 seconds to win the race. Gatlin finished close behind in 10.03.
“It was a tough race. I knew Gatlin was going to be out and I just tried to come back and get him,” Gay told BBC Sport.
Tennis wrapped up its final major tournament before the Olympics, with Roger Federer winning another Wimbledon title. He has the possibility of securing a career Golden slam on the All England courts where he’s already won seven majors. And actually, so does Serena WIlliams, whose career seem to be nearing its conclusion after she exited the French open in the first round. She bounced back by winning her fifth Wimbledon title Saturday and will hopefully face Maria Sharapova for gold in London. So much grunting.
Before any of that can happen the All England grounds crew will be busy getting the beat up courts ready for the upcoming Olympic tournament, which start in three weeks.
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