Did Michael Phelps really win that 100m butterfly?

The question has to be asked.? It was a close race and anyone that saw it had to think “holy shit how did Phelps make up the distance at the final lunge?”? That was my thought.? Still, he won and on Saturday night during the relay it amazed me how many people were pumped up for that race.? A swimming race, no less.

At this downtown Portland bar, people were chanting “USA! USA! USA!” at the start of the race, banging their tables during it and yelping after Phelps secured his eighth gold medal.? It was a moment of pride for an American athlete the likes I have never seen in my life.? Ever (born months before 1980 Miracle on Ice).? Perhaps not since Michael Johnson in Atlanta 1996 has the country rallied around one particular individual, you know just to see if they’ll live up to the lofty expectations.

But did Phelps win the 100m Butterfly? At this point does it even matter?? I say it doesn’t.? Of course, the crowd on Saturday would have been considerably less animated if Phelps lost his previous race.? But it’s an interesting conspiracy theory, nonetheless.? Someone needs to call Mulder and Scully and get on this.

Sports Illustrated has a nice frame by frame look at the last seconds of the race.? For his part, Milo Cavic seems to be taking his loss with an Olympian-amount of humility and pride. He and his country should be proud of him.

Curiously, Omega sponsors Michael Phelps and also created the timing system used in the Olympic Pool.? It’s accurate down to the 1000th of a second, which is more accurate than the pool itself.? Meaning that the pool lengths aren’t guaranteed to be even, so the race is timed to the 100th second.? It goes without saying that Omega has a vested interest in the success of Phelps.

Still, who really cares?? In a year or month from now no one will remember any of this, only that Phelps is arguably the greatest Olympic athlete of all time and has all but assured he will be Athlete of the Year.

I still think Mark Spitz could outswim him though, given that he swam with a mustache and a quasi-afro and Phelps is all sleek, shaved and benefits from Speedo’s swimwear technology.? A debate for another day.

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • angel July 31, 2009, 8:08 pm

    people who argue this are so stuped everyone saw the race so what the f are they arguing about…the pic they show here is pointlessphelps touches first with fngertips and ten the other whats his name (crybaby)come in after.the pic is pointless cause you cantreally see but for all of us who have 50" HD plasmas with slow motion replay can clearly see who won, thats phelps thank you……… now stop crying.

  • James Furbush August 18, 2008, 6:50 am

    Pimp away, pimp away. Agreed that there should be no backlash and Phelps should be put on a pedestal. I still think Mark Spitz is a bigger pimp though. That dude was a swimmer, while Phelps is like some Atlantian god.

  • Ace August 18, 2008, 6:34 am

    Don’t know, don’t care…he won and that’s that. I’ll tell you, though, the Phelps Backlash is pretty disgusting. We finally get a winner and a growing minority shits all over it. The hardest thing to do is to win when you’re expected to win. Might as well celebrate the guy who finally does it.

    Hate to pimp, but more: http://rebirthofslack.blogspot.com/2008/08/hating-phelps-you-might-be-communiss.html