Monday, July 28, 2008
BREAKING NEWS: Paul Hamm Pulls Out of Olympics
This bulletin came out a few hours ago and it was a bit shocking and sad to hear. Defending Olympic champion Paul Hamm has pulled out of the Beijing Olympic Games citing that his broken right hand has not healed yet.
Injured gymnast Paul Hamm not going to Beijing (Yahoo! Sports/AP Wire)
This ultimately means that Yang Wei has a big chance to win the Individual All-Around Competition in front of the home Chinese crowd. The event was supposed to be a matchup between Yang Wei and Paul Hamm but with the Athens gold medalist out, the prospects of an American medalist in the event have been left unsettled.
But the bigger question to be asked right now is who will replace Hamm. Alexander Artemev, David Durante and Raj Bhavsar are the selected alternates and one of them will replace Hamm on the team. The selection committee says that they will make a decision as soon as possible. While none of the three have the valued experience that Paul Hamm exhibits, all three looked strong enough during the Olympic trials that may help the United States in getting a team medal. However, neither of the three are strong enough individually to compete with some of the best in the world for an all-around medal, at least not yet.