Top Olympic Storylines


On the track and in the pool, rivalries seem to be the overwhelming theme of this year’s Summer Olympics. Coming off a historic performance in Beijing, Michael Phelps look to add more to his Olympic resume. Only three medals shy of becoming history’s most decorated athlete, Phelps faces stiff competition from fellow American and six-time medalist Ryan Lochte beginning with Saturday’s 400-meter individual medley.

Blazing Jamaicans

Defending Olympic champion Usain Bolt has long been hailed as the world’s fastest man, but recent competition from training partner and fellow countryman Yohan Blake is putting Bolt’s legacy in jeopardy. At the Jamaican Olympic Trials, Blake edged Bolt in both the 100-meter and 200-meter dash, setting up a showdown for the ages in London.

Backing up the Dream Team Claims

American basketball has long dominated international play — this year has been no exception. Even with an injury-plagued frontcourt, the U.S. cruised though international play behind their veteran NBA talent, but with Lakers star and team leader Kobe Bryant comparing Coach K’s squad to 1992’s Jordan-led Dream Team, anything but gold will surely be deemed a bust.

Wieber’s Quest

Following an all-around victory at the 2011 World Gymnastics Championships, 17-year-old American Jordyn Wieber spearheads an attempt to catapult the U.S. atop the women’s team podium for the first time since the 1996 Atlanta Games. With the help of Gabby Douglas and McKayla Maroney, America may rake in five plus medals en route to a historic medal haul.

What do you think? Anything we missed? Comment below and let the discussion begin.

* Photos Courtesy of Time,