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Thread: Mark Spitz, once the star, upset over Beijing snub

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    Elite Member celeb_2006's Avatar
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    Default Mark Spitz, once the star, upset over Beijing snub

    Spitz, once the star, upset over Beijing snub - Olympics - Yahoo! Sports

    (Geez he's bitter, a bit full of himself?)


    - US swim legend Mark Spitz won't be on hand in Beijing if Michael Phelps breaks his record of seven gold medals at a single Olympics—because, he says, no one bothered to invite him.
    Spitz said the International Olympic Committee, a US television network or FINA—the international body that governs world swimming—should have brought him to the Games this year, with Phelps making a go at his record.
    "I never got invited. You don't go to the Olympics just to say, I am going to go. Especially because of who I am," Spitz told AFP in Hong Kong.
    "I am going to sit there and watch Michael Phelps break my record anonymously? That's almost demeaning to me. It is not almost—it is."
    Spitz became one of the most famous athletes in the world at the 1972 Munich Olympics, winning seven gold medals—with seven world records—in what many consider to be one of the greatest achievements in all of sport.

    Phelps is aiming to better that mark in Beijing, hoping to bring home eight golds. And Spitz, now 58 and grey and without his trademark moustache, cannot understand why he wasn't asked along to see the show.
    "They voted me one of the top five Olympians in all time. Some of them are dead. But they invited the other ones to go to the Olympics, but not me," he said. "Yes, I am a bit upset about it."
    Now a stockbroker and motivational speaker, Spitz also thinks he could have won eight golds himself in Munich if only he had had the chance.
    "I won seven events. If they had the 50m freestyle back then, which they do now, I probably would have won that too," he said.
    Spitz, whose brief stint in show business in the 1970s never quite matched his success in the pool, said he attended the Athens Olympics four years ago—when Phelps also tried to break the record.
    "They did not once put my face on television," he recalled. "But as soon as the swimming was over, and Michael Phelps didn't break my record, every time I went to beach volley, they put my face on the volleyballs."
    Spitz said it would have been a great idea if he could be the one presenting the gold medals to Phelps, who has for years been candid about his ambition to eclipse the mark of seven golds.
    And Spitz thinks Phelps will succeed—for one very good reason.
    "He's almost identical to me. He's a world-record holder in all these events, so he is dominating the events just like I did," Spitz said. "He reminds me of myself."

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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    I guess it must be hard to see all your previous glorious accomplishments be demolished and eclipsed by someone younger, faster and in their prime when your own prime is over.

    But still, he seems pretty egotistical to be whining about it, especially to the press. It's kind of undignified of him.

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    Elite Member greysfang's Avatar
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    1. I'm annoyed everyone is assuming Phelps will break the Spitz record. I'm pretty sure he won't.

    2. I'm disgusted that Spitz is whining. You're my hero dude, act like it.
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    Elite Member HWBL's Avatar
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    Not good PR for Spitz and not showing good sportmanship (sp). But then, I guess I can understand his bitterness a little bit after being a record holder for 36 years...... He should just have chosen the higher ground and not whine about it.
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    wow shut the fuck up you whiny douche, have some class!

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    He was thisclose to just coming on out and saying, "Don't you know who I am?" He should pack his shit and go on his own dime if it's that important.

    I can see where it would be awkward to invite the current record holder to see it be broken. In fact, I think to me it would seem a bit tacky and crass to invite him to see his record broken. I don't know, but Spitz isn't coming across well here.
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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    Re: breaking world records, I don't know Greys, it seems the swimmers are just getting better and faster. Did you see the relay team last night? It blew my mind.

    And maybe it's partly technological advantages helping--I noticed they're all wearing those full body suits that are supposed to shave time off. When you're talking tenths and hundredths of a second, I guess those things do make a difference.

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    Elite Member greysfang's Avatar
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    Yes I saw the relay last night and went nuts screaming. That's what made me think of starting the spoilers thread. If I had known beforehand who had won I would have been royally pissed at being cheated out of that moment.

    I don't know that I believe in the bodysuits, I think its probably technology helping athletes train more efficiently. Besides, those things are goofy looking. Watching the guys adjust their "boobs" turned me off a bit.
    Last edited by greysfang; August 11th, 2008 at 04:06 PM.
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    Elite Member Beeyotch's Avatar
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    I know, it reminded me of women fussing with straps/strapless dresses. Welcome to our world! The suits are bit goofy-looking too...

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    Quote Originally Posted by greysfang View Post
    Yes I saw the relay last night and went nuts screaming. That's what made me think of starting the spoilers thread. If I had known beforehand who had won I would have been royally pissed at being cheated out of that moment.

    I don't know that I believe in the bodysuits, I think its probably technology helping athletes train more efficiently. Besides, those things are goofy looking. Watching the guys adjust their "boobs" turned me off a bit.
    It isn't the suits... It's all Phelps!! And he will break the record, and be very gracious while doing so..It's the Baltimore way, hun!
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    A*O
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    And speaking of showing some class, what about the US medley team whooping it up like a bunch of frat brat morons after France managed to lose by a nanosecond (Oh God I would have LOVED France to win that medal and seen the US team's reaction). Whatever happened to sportsmanship and just a little bit of gracious humility?
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    Elite Member chartreuse's Avatar
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    wow, somebody's a little full of themselves. i can't stand people who think they are entitled to things. if he wanted to go to the olympics he should've gone; if not, don't complain about it. that's bad sportsmanship, not to mention bad karma.
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    They're not allowed to be excited? What were they supposed to do, clap quietly? It's the Olympics, it's a huge upset, of COURSE they were whooping it up

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    Quote Originally Posted by A*O View Post
    And speaking of showing some class, what about the US medley team whooping it up like a bunch of frat brat morons after France managed to lose by a nanosecond (Oh God I would have LOVED France to win that medal and seen the US team's reaction). Whatever happened to sportsmanship and just a little bit of gracious humility?
    Well, since the French team said they were going to 'SMASH' the Americans before the race, analyst said they had no chance in hell of winning the goal.. So, I guess the French got their words right back at them!! Also, the American relay team was Happy, and they showed excitement over their Incredible, fantastic win!! They let their talents speak for them, and it was a 4 second WIN!!
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    A*O
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    ^^ What upset? The US won the gold medal they obviously confidently expected to get. The upset would have been if France got it. It's not just the US athletes, it's ALL of them who carry on like this. And if it was a 4 second gap (didn't look like it where I was sitting) then it wasn't an 'incredible' win. 4 seconds is half a lifetime in swimming. My gripe isn't with the US athletes specifically, the Aussies are just as bad. I just used that particular race as an example of the unseemly behaviour we see all over sport these days.
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