I haven't commented on the Olympics yet, but that doesn't mean I'm not tuned in. It's just that, well, this is a hockey blog, and I'm not so sure updates from the pitch are what people are clamouring for.
(Canada was pounded 6-1 by No. 1 Australia, by the way. Only two shots on goal, too.)
In terms of sports I follow, it's hockey before all else, but the Games are next in line. I was hooked for good in 1996 when, stuck on the couch with the flu, I watched the Atlanta Olympics from beginning to end.
The swimming so far has been the highlight, but I'm personally waiting on Friday when track events get going. I ran sprints in high school, well enough to lose badly at the provincial level, but my favourite part of meets was watching some of the other events firsthand.
Incredibly, one of the fellows I used to watch in awe, Dylan Armstrong from Kamloops, is competing in shot put in Beijing. Even as a teen, he was a huge hulk of a man. Back then, he was more of a hammer thrower, but a dozen or so years later, he's ranked 10th in the world at chucking a 16-pound metal ball 70 feet.
Beijing is a big, big deal in the newsroom. Every member of the sports department is working at least six days a week into the wee hours, and our staff is close to double. We have a dedicated website that's manned nearly 24 hours a day and a group of about 10 reporters and columnists in China filing all day every day.
Canada has yet to medal, but they'll break the goose egg at some point. Get the rowers out there already.
The real battle, however, is shaping up between the U.S. and China at the top of the heap. My money's still on the Americans, given how they'll fare in track events — 16 per cent of Summer Games medals are in athletics — but it could be close.
I've got a big NHL-related post in the works, but it's going to take a few days to hammer out. Stay tuned.
N.B. Matt Fenwick's on the Games watch, too.