Sep 20, 2012, 8:43 AM EDT
We need to be honest with ourselves and admit that there is nothing remotely fierce about the ‘Fierce Five.’ They’re all five-foot nothing and could be held off with an extended arm. It’s a really terrible nickname and we need to stop using it. Unfortunately Gymnastics USA has adopted it on their website, so we’re probably already too late.
Still, hear me out. Nicknames used to come with more panache than some alliteration and the ability to count. Football had Pittsburgh’s “Steel Curtain” and Denver’s “Orange Crush,” basketball had Detroit’s “Bad Boys” and L.A.’s “Showtime,” and of course baseball has the “Bronx Bombers.” So let’s think a little harder before we put a final label on these girls, lest their incredible accomplishments enter into history with a sub-par nickname.
“Golden Girls” is dumb and too easy, “America’s Queens” is cliché, and we can think of four people (and their mothers) who wouldn’t like “Gabby and the Girls,” or “Aly and her Allies” – but seriously, those are two awesome names. We could be talked into “Bratz” or “the Freshmen” because they both make sense in context, but they probably wouldn’t be popular, much like the Bratz and most actual freshmen.
So now we’re left thinking outside the box and for our money the best answer is “the Gym Rats.” And sure, we’re almost certain most teen girls don’t like to be called rats in any context, but it’s a positive term for people who work hard and never rest until they achieve their goals and we think these girls fit that bill. Plus, gymnastics takes place in a gym, so it works on a number of levels. Tell us we’re wrong.
So that’s what we’re going with now. Please join us in demanding better nicknames for our proud athletes. And lastly, I’m sorry, but the “Magnificent Seven” is a group of gunslingers led by Yul Brynner and Steve McQueen, no matter how amazing Kerri Strug’s vault was in ‘96. Let’s retroactively fix that one, too.
May 24, 2013, 6:07 PM EDT
Dozens of Olympic gold medalists, record holders, and world champions are descending on New York’s Randall Island this weekend to square-off at the adidas Grand Prix Diamond League Meet. You can catch all the action Saturday afternoon live on NBC starting at 1pm EST. Here’s a list of marquee match-ups you won’t want to miss:…
May 24, 2013, 12:50 PM EDT
Amid the ongoing fight against steroids, the World Anti-doping Agency said Thursday it’s planning to administer a record 2,500 tests at February’s Sochi Olympics, which is roughly 350 more than at the Vancouver Winter Games four years ago. Alexei Slautin, the head of the Sochi 2014 doping control committee, told the Russian Sports Ministry’s website…
May 24, 2013, 11:27 AM EDT
An announcement from NHL Commisioner Gary Bettman about whether players will be able to participate in the Sochi Games was expected sometime this month, but May is drawing to a close with no word yet from the league. Now Bettman’s top deputy Bill Daly is saying that talks are still ongoing between the NHL, NHLPA,…
May 24, 2013, 10:16 AM EDT
The IOC’s recommendation to remove wrestling from the Olympics shocked FILA and the community, but IOC President Jacques Rogge said Thursday that he’s thinks FILA reacted well, and that last week’s meeting in Moscow, which included naming new leadership and making significant rules changes, was good for the sport. “I think they had the good…
May 23, 2013, 1:59 PM EDT
We’ve already got one great Olympic comeback story Thursday with the official return of Coach K to Team USA Basketball. But the rumors surrounding his return were short-lived, and pale in comparison to the questions about whether Michael Phelps will be back for Rio. Fort Myers NBC anchor Peter Busch, gold medalist Rowdy Gaines, and…
May 23, 2013, 1:24 PM EDT
It’s like he never left. Mostly because he really didn’t. But Duke basketball coach Mike Krzyzewski made his return to Team USA official at a press conference on campus in Durham Thursday. “I really thought I wasn’t going to do it,” Krzyzewski told reporters. “But now that I am doing it, I can tell you…
May 23, 2013, 12:46 PM EDT
As an eight-year-old in the early-90s, I had a mild panic attack of joy when I heard the first Dream Team was being put together for the Barcelona Games, with personal favorites Michael Jordan and Charles Barkley headlining the team. My life goal immediately became playing for Team USA some day. Which didn’t actually happen.…
May 23, 2013, 12:03 PM EDT
Amateur boxing association president C.K. Wu of Taiwan officially entered his name on the ballot for the next IOC president, becoming the fourth world sports leader to step forward with a bid. Wu made his announcement Thursday afternoon at a news conference in Taipei, saying that the goal of his time spent as the IOC’s…
May 23, 2013, 10:23 AM EDT
Despite all the rumors that swimming legend Michael Phelps will return to the pool for one more go at the Rio Games, he seems to be pretty content spending his first year of retirement golfing with the likes of his idol, Michael Jordan. But Phelps’s friend and top-rival Ryan Lochte said he thinks it’s just…
May 22, 2013, 1:05 PM EDT
After spending all of nine months away from his post as the men’s USA Basketball coach, Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski will return to the team through the 2014 World Cup and the 2016 Rio Games. Coach K had stepped away from the team after last summer’s London Games, but over the weekend he told SI’s Pete…
May 22, 2013, 11:31 AM EDT
Any American still looking for a decent reason to support the “Keep Olympic Wrestling” movement need look no further than Cornell wrestler Kyle Dake: The four time NCAA national champ who was also the only USA wrestler to score a win against Iran at last week’s “Rumble on the Rails.” And now, on top of…
May 22, 2013, 10:29 AM EDT
Scouts, analysts, and casual onlookers have had nothing but good things to say about rookie defensive end Lawrence Okoye, the British Olympian who inked a free agent deal with the team despite having never played American football. Now the rest of the world is starting to notice. Check out Bleacher Report‘s look at Okoye’s early…
May 22, 2013, 9:41 AM EDT
Details from a Tuesday summit regarding the role of the World Anti-Doping Agency are scarce at best, but IOC President Jacques Rogge told the AP that the issues with drug testing are seen as qualitative rather than quantitative, and that WADA will do more unannounced out-of-competition testing of athletes in the future. “There should be…
May 21, 2013, 2:07 PM EDT
Olympic gold medalist (and occasional NBA scoring champ) Kevin Durant pledged $1 million to the tornado relief effort in Oklahoma Tuesday through his Durant Family Foundation, according to an announcement from the Red Cross. “Mr. Durant’s gift and support to Okla. comes at a time of great need and we’re forever thankful for his generosity,”…
May 21, 2013, 11:37 AM EDT
In news that would be much easier to report if I spoke another language, two-time London Olympics swimming champ Yannick Agnel is leaving his coach and training facility in Nice, France and will move to Baltimore to train with Michael Phelps’s longtime coach Bob Bowman. The young Frenchman announced at a press conference Tuesday that…
May 21, 2013, 10:31 AM EDT
Gabby Douglas has had a pretty great year: She won two gold medals including the all-around, was named Sportswoman of the Year and AP Athlete of the Year, wrote a book, met the President, appeared on a Wheaties Box, Vampire Diaries, and Oprah, threw out first pitches in New York and LA, and even led…
May 20, 2013, 1:09 PM EDT
The “early word” on British discus hurler turned NFL defensive end Lawrence Okoye is good according to ESPN analyst Michael Clayton, who recently noted how Okoye impressed onlookers at San Francisco’s rookie camp last week. “Okoye might have enough pure talent for the 49ers to consider him for the active roster,” Clayton wrote in a…
May 20, 2013, 11:27 AM EDT
Even after being spotted on a high school track in April, and being cleared to race at the Paralympic Worlds, South African sprinter Oscar Pistorius has ruled out competitive running in 2013. Instead, he plans to focus on his upcoming murder trial. “We have decided as a team we are not talking [about] any training…
May 20, 2013, 9:49 AM EDT
Maybe USA Basketball CEO Jerry Colangelo isn’t satisfied with the list of willing candidates to coach the national team, or maybe Mike Krzyzewski is already getting the itch for another gold medal run, but apparently the two have been discussing the possibility of teaming up again through Rio. “There’s a chance,” Coach K told Sports…
May 18, 2013, 10:34 AM EDT
FILA, wrestling’s governing body, is spending the weekend in Moscow cleaning house before an upcoming IOC vote will determine if they end up on the 2020 Olympics schedule. And apparently the meeting has been productive. On Saturday, acting president Nenad Lalovic, who took over after the forced resignation of president Raphael Martinetti, was officially elected…
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