Bolt a stunner
It hurts to say this because I've been with Gabrielle Douglas from her emergence at the U.S. nationals as a sparkling star, through her turn at the Olympics trials where she brushed off a fall as if it was an annoying fly then to watching her lead the U.S. women's gymnastics team to its second gold medal in history, before finally going out and winning her own all-around gold medal.
But for creating an "Oh my gosh moment," for creating the memory that will be talked about, debated over and most of all remembered from these 2012 Olympics, that would be Usain Bolt and his insane 100-meter win Sunday. It's the one I want to see again. Well, and Serena Williams and Andy Murray winning golds. Still haven't seen them.
Douglas did unexpected
It's hard not to pick Michael Phelps, because he accomplished what no swimmer has ever done before — again.
Usain Bolt thrilled as usual. I can only imagine the electricity in the stadium Sunday when he flew to 100 meters gold. He came from nowhere to blow past the field. He'll probably win the 200 too.
But Gabby Douglas is the real star of these Olympics because she did the unexpected. Without any Olympic experience — and not even considered the best gymnast on the American team — she rose to new heights. In becoming the first African-American to win the individual all-around, she will elevate gymnastics, just like Phelps did swimming after 2008. That's a star.
Bolt in marquee event
This wasn't the Olympics in which Michael Phelps proved he was the best swimmer in history. He took care of that four years ago in Beijing. And Gabby Douglas is a feel-good story that doesn't necessarily have global appeal.
Usain Bolt is an international star — reclaiming his title as the best sprinter in the world, perhaps the best sprinter ever.
The nine-plus seconds in which he won the 100-meter race? The most exciting in the Games to this point
Bolt and Carl Lewis are the only sprinters to win the 100 in consecutive Olympics. And whether Bolt goes on to another medal in the 200 is irrelevant. He's the star of London, the marquee name in the marquee event.
Stacy St. Clair
The Brits would say Andy Murray or Jessica Ennis. The rest of the world might pick Oscar Pistorius.
However my vote goes to Gabby Douglas.
In addition to becoming the first African-American individual champion, she's the first U.S. woman to win both the team and all-around gold. Her achievement stands to inspire an entirely new segment of the country's population, encouraging young black girls to try a sport traditionally dominated by white suburbanites.
Douglas, quite literally, could change the face of her sport with her performance here. That fact alone makes her star shine brighter.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun