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No way was Marta not going to let Gabby not be on team, she is going to be utilized on maybe two events, bars and maybe vault or FE, and no way is she going any where near the AA but she is a AA Gold medalist Marta likes her titles.

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Marta usually leaves her lineup decisions until after camp.  Last year, bars lineup was up in the air until podium training.  Gabby was fifth in the all around at 2015 nationals, but she did bars in qualifications with Aly and Maggy, who both placed above Gabby at nationals, fighting for the bars qualification spot.  Aly ended up winning the spot but fell during qualifications. Gabby qualified for bars finals, earned the highest score on bars for the US during team finals over Madison, and had the highest score on bars overall in the all around competition.  If Gabby shows improvement at camp, it is likely that her strength on bars will buy her the chance to qualify for the all around again since Aly and Laurie both made mistakes on bars and showed weakness in the one area that helps Gabby's case.  

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Why did they cut the teams from 7 to 5?

Yes, I wonder about this too.  I think it would give the other countries more of a chance to medal (not that ANY team is guaranteed a medal, but I think you know what I mean).  

I would love it if Aly got to compete in the AA and won a medal.  Because she has worked hard to come back, and I feel like she's come back just to complete in the AA.  But Marta will do what she thinks is best.  She appears to be the (mostly benevolent) dictator of women's usa gymnastics, and she is all about the medal count.

My grassy knoll theory is that if someone on the team messes up during their last practice at the camp, that they will somehow be "injured" (i.e. replaced) and an alternate will take their place.

I feel sorry for Gabby- I feel like she's damned if she does, damned if she doesn't.  For that reason alone, I hope she takes an EF medal somewhere.

Definitely looking forward to the olympics, both the men and the women's competitions.

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It won't surprise me if Gabby is "suddenly injured" if she fails to follow what Martha tells her to do between now and the Olympics.

Edited by choclatechip45
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Just thought I'd mention, for 2020, they're reducing the team size even further. Only FOUR athletes per team, but an additional two athletes can attempt to qualify for event finals as individuals. For example, had that been in effect for Rio, imagine if, say, Skinner and Locklear were brought along to compete for vault and bars finals but not as part of the team competition.

Edited by KFC

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 If Gabby shows improvement at camp, it is likely that her strength on bars will buy her the chance to qualify for the all around again since Aly and Laurie both made mistakes on bars and showed weakness in the one area that helps Gabby's case.  

I don't know--if I were Marta I'd be wary of giving Gabby the opportunity to qualify for the AA given her erratic performance across all four days of the past two competitions, since it would be at the expense of a teammate who has been more consistent and stood up better to recent pressure. Gabby could have a great day in qualifying when the pressure is lower and take that second AA spot from, let's say, Laurie. However, Gabby then has to deal with the pressure of defending her AA title and needs to hit four clean routines, which she hasn't been able to do in four of her last four tries--and we're not talking small deductions, either. To me, the chances that she'd finish sixth or seventh are about even with the chances that she'd medal. I would put both Laurie and Aly as likelier candidates to medal based on consistency alone. So if I were in Marta's shoes, I might use Madison instead of Gabby on floor or beam to take Gabby out of the all around mix and be done with it. That being said, after Simone and Laurie, Gabby is the most natural fit to use on all four events in qualifying, and maybe Marta would rather have three girls in the running to qualify than two. Aly would clearly need to be shoehorned into bars to make it happen for her, and with a spot going to the bars specialist and one to Simone and both other girls having significantly higher scores than she does, I don't see it happening. I feel bad for her, though.

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It will be an interesting decision for Marta to make regarding the line-ups for prelims and finals.

Basically Simone competes all events. If the idea is that Kocian only competes UB, and given she had a fractured tibia only 6 weeks ago, I don't see Marta putting her up for anything else other than maybe beam (and even then she is not incredibly consistent so it wouldn't make a lot of sense unless Douglas continues to falter on that apparatus in training). That leaves 3 spots for floor, balance beam and vault. But only 2 spots for UB. Of the three contenders Douglas has the best UB, followed by Hernandez and Raisman. So if you go on UB prowess alone then Raisman misses out. Of course at Worlds last year, Marta benched Nichols in prelims to give Raisman a shot at the AA but then brought Nichols in for team finals after Raisman fell in qualifying. She could potentially do that again this year, benching either Hernandez or Douglas to give Raisman a shot at AA qualifying. But Douglas has a legitimate chance to qualify for UB finals (but probably unlikely to medal). And Hernandez has a legitimate chance to medal in the AA. Douglas too, although I see Hernandez beating both Douglas and Raisman at this point in time.

Traditionally Marta makes her decisions last minute based on training. Hernandez has momentum in her corner, Douglas has a history of hitting when it counts for the team, and Raisman has the sentimental edge. Tough decision!

Raisman and Douglas both came back and were clear about their goals - Raisman had unfinished business in the AA and Douglas wanted to make history and defend her title. They've both been incredibly successful in making it this far and on to the team but I think they will both be denied their ultimate goal sadly. 

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I really don't see any way Marta doesn't have Simone, Gabby and Laurie competing AA in prelims. Aly's UB are horrendous and she's not going to want to put Gabby or Laurie up in team finals without doing a UB routine in prelims. 

I actually expect Laurie to be the second qualifier over Gabby for the AA final quite easily. Laurie also had quite a few small missteps on night two of Trials and easily beat Aly in the AA. 

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I actually expect Laurie to be the second qualifier over Gabby for the AA final quite easily. Laurie also had quite a few small missteps on night two of Trials and easily beat Aly in the AA. 

Me too. The exact opposite of what happened in 2012 when Gabby beat out Jordyn.

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4 hours ago, pivot said:

I actually expect Laurie to be the second qualifier over Gabby for the AA final quite easily. Laurie also had quite a few small missteps on night two of Trials and easily beat Aly in the AA.

I think Laurie will be the 2nd AA but in reality the potential scores for all 3 candidates when they hit is pretty close, within a few tenths - which can be a missed skill or an OOB or other minor deduction on the day.

My money is Laurie just because of the confidence she has right now. We saw how well that worked out for Gabby in 2012, coming in without the pressure and expectations that Jordyn had and the confidence she had gained from Trials. I think that will be Laurie this year. But I think the 3rd US AA (whether Raisman or Douglas) will probably be ranked somewhere from 3rd-5th.

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4 hours ago, CeeBeeGee said:

Aly beat out Jordyn in 2012. Gabby was expected to qualify--after all, she did beat Jordyn at trials. 

I still remember the TV Guide description for the upcoming AA final, before the qualifying round happened, stating "Gabby Douglas and Jordyn Wieber lead the US" in the competition, or something like that. After the qualifying round, the description for the AA was changed to "Gabby Douglas and Aly Raisman lead the US..." That's what happens when we get ahead of ourselves.

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4 hours ago, CeeBeeGee said:

Aly beat out Jordyn in 2012. Gabby was expected to qualify--after all, she did beat Jordyn at trials. 

Gabby and Jordyn were expected to compete in the all around. However Aly qualified in second, Gabby qualified in third and I believe Jordyn in fourth. So Gabby beat Jordyn out for the second spot. Gabby had that huge out of bounds pass during prelims. While Aly had the best meet of her life up to that point. Another fun fact Gabby qualified in third for beam finals ahead of Aly.

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In the actual rankings in the qualifier, yeah, Gabby beat out Jordyn (and Aly beat out both of them), but it's still fair to say that Aly beat out Jordyn for the AA spot because Gabby was always expected to get a spot all along while Aly wasn't thought to be a real contender with AA world champion Jordyn in the mix. It was always assumed it would be Gabby and Jordyn in the AA and it ended up being Gabby and Aly.

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2 minutes ago, Chicken Wing said:

In the actual rankings in the qualifier, yeah, Gabby beat out Jordyn (and Aly beat out both of them), but it's still fair to say that Aly beat out Jordyn for the AA spot because Gabby was always expected to get a spot all along while Aly wasn't thought to be a real contender with AA world champion Jordyn in the mix. It was always assumed it would be Gabby and Jordyn in the AA and it ended up being Gabby and Aly.

That's fair. I always felt bad back in 2012 for Aly because I felt people did not give her the credit she deserved it was all about Jordyn. I understand why it was a big deal Jordyn did not qualify. Plus I know people in real life who have met Aly through her appearances who have all said she is an absolute sweetheart.

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Is the "2 per country" rule still in effect for the AA finals? Or have the finals been revised to include any of the top 24 gymnasts from AA prelims?

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I still think they should do the first-place finisher from each country and the top remaining at-large. It sucks that someone could finish in 3rd place overall and be left out if the top 2 were from the same country as her.

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Am I the only one who had no idea about Gabbys reality show?  Seriously.  I don't even know the name of it.  

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To address a couple of comments- Aly beat out Gabby and Jordyn to qualify AA in London.

I think who goes AA is a bit of a mess because Gabby should be top 3 bars but only the 4th best AA. Kocian is definitely performing bars for a shot at EF so that means we either give the 3 best AAers a shot for AA final or put Gabby up since she is going to be in the team final bars lineup regardless. And I wouldn't want Abby on beam or FX (where she is probably weakest on the team) in team finals. But Kocian is the weak link on Vt and not much better than Gabby on FX. If we went by who was useful on each event Kocian would sit out VT, Aly sit out bars, Gabby or Kocian sit out beam and FX. Which means Biles + Henrandez would be defacto AA. But it would not be out of character for Marta to leave an AAer in on an event she will allow someone else to perform in team finals. Maloney bars in 00 and Aly on bars at last year's worlds spring to mind. I think she also held Tidd of vault in 01 for the AAers.

As always outside of the top two AA and someone who is a mile ahead of the rest of the team on a necessary event (Hatch 04, Maroney 12, Kocian on bars this year) making that team was all about complimentary pieces and not overall placement. If we went back to 6-5-4 finals things might have worked out differently since you need more across the board depth and have a little more margin for error with a dropped score.

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3 hours ago, MostlyC said:

Possible reason why Gabby turned in a less than stellar performance?

http://www.mercurynews.com/sports/ci_30116501/gabby-douglas-ordeal-disclosed-after-making-olympic-team
 

She did miss part of the January camp, I think they said she was sick or something. Natalie is the ultimate spin queen. I know Martha did not like Gabby's original coaches, but I wonder if the real reason why she tried to convince Kelli Hill and ultimately Chow to coach Gabby was that she thought her mom was a distraction.  With Simone Martha just sent specialists to Simone's gym to help Aimee. 

Edited by choclatechip45

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Gabby isn't necessarily the 4th AA. She's scored higher than Aly internationally and if she is clean, she'll outscore Laurie as well.

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Having an injured knee does not sound like an "ordeal" to me.  I was thinking stalker or death threats or something.  An athlete with a knee injury that healed, without surgery, in a few weeks seems pretty par for the course.

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It's great to see Aly on the team.  She was one of my favorites of London.  I'm hoping she gets another chance at AA but will be fine if it's Laurie and Simone.  As excited as I am for the women's gymnastics, I'm actually quite intrigued this year for the men.

I couldn't be happier for Sam Mikulak, I loved him in London, he showed that you can have a wonderful attitude and be supportive of athletes from other countries without winning a medal.  He'll probably qualify for AA barring catastrophe.  I'm guessing either Chris Brooks or Jake Dalton will be the 2nd.  I'm hoping John Orozco will have a better Olympics.  I think nerves got the the better of him in London and he's struggled with injuries but I'm hoping that he has a better go of it in Rio.  I'm glad they have people who are strong on Pommel Horse (Alex Naddour) and Rings (Dalton), which have always been the US team's weakest disciplines.

I know not to put too much faith in the US men's team (they're 5th overall in qualifying behind Japan, China, Great Britain and Russia).  But like in Beijing, being the underdog helps sometimes.  From what I'm reading both Chinese teams are mainly newcomers (only one returning on the men's team).  The most glaring omission on the men's side is Zou Kai, but it appears he has had injuries over the last two years.  And Kohei Uchimura is back with 3 other London vets.  Looks like Japan might be the team to beat again this year. 

Speaking of vets, if you look at the linked page of individual qualifiers, it looks like Marian Dragalescu, the Great Beefcake of Romania is still competing, hot damn!

http://www.intlgymnast.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=4533:list-of-2016-mens-olympic-qualifiers&catid=2:news&Itemid=53

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What a poor sport. There is a few more retweets in her feed with people saying she should have made the team.  If I was USA Gymnastics I would tell her knock it off or she could be replaced as a alternate. Fine I get your disappointed but this is a immature and passively aggressive way to handle it.

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From what I recall, she was a very good sport when she was the Worlds alternate last year (after having been a full-fledged team member in '14). Disappointing.

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Is there a kind soul who can explain what we're looking at in the Skinner Twitter thing?  (I'm not much of a Twitter reader.)

Edited by Harry24

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Is there a kind soul who can explain what we're looking at in the Skinner Twitter thing?  (I'm not much of a Twitter reader.)

Someone photoshoped her picture where Gabby is in the team photo. Skinner Retweeted the picture basically and than deleted the Retweet.

 

Quote

What a poor sport. There is a few more retweets in her feed with people saying she should have made the team.  If I was USA Gymnastics I would tell her knock it off or she could be replaced as a alternate. Fine I get your disappointed but this is a immature and passively aggressive way to handle it.

Especially since USA Gymnastics apparently had a talk with her after the N word debacle.

Edited by choclatechip45
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29 minutes ago, CeeBeeGee said:

From what I recall, she was a very good sport when she was the Worlds alternate last year (after having been a full-fledged team member in '14). Disappointing.

She's retweeted some racist comments in the past and then doubled down on them when called out for it. So, I am not terribly surprised by her behavior.

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There were also a couple emojis on that tweet that made me raise my eyebrows; there was a blond girl and a monkey. Now I don't know if the person meant anything by that, but given Skinner's history, I doubt she would care either way.

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There were also a couple emojis on that tweet that made me raise my eyebrows; there was a blond girl and a monkey. Now I don't know if the person meant anything by that, but given Skinner's history, I doubt she would care either way.

I agree which is why I did not feel bad for her Sunday night. I felt worse for Maggie, Ragan and Ashton. I know Simone who is positive about everyone has made some subtle digs at Skinner in the past. 

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She's already been warned in the past for her social media behaviours, what does she really think she's accomplishing with this? Her coaches are busy re-tweeting tweets that criticise Gabby's inclusion and Skinner's exclusion as well. So she obviously doesn't have strong role models to help moderate her behaviour!

I feel sorry for Gabby and hope that she is unaware of all of this. She has to train and live with these girls for the next couple of weeks. She already has incredible pressure on her and is well aware that she almost blew her chance entirely. Trying to deal with this on top can't help. 

If Skinner and her coaches have issues with the selection process then it would be more productive to talk with, you know, the actual selectors rather than pile on a team-mate who has no say or power in this situation. Having said that, all the gymnasts and coaching staff are well aware that Olympic Trials will not be the sole criteria used by the committee. Skinner has done extremely well to get an alternate position by peaking now. But she does not have some outstanding track record behind her. I doubt she was ever in serious consideration for the team beyond alternate status. She needs to get some perspective (and some cultural awareness).

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I feel sorry for Gabby and hope that she is unaware of all of this. She has to train and live with these girls for the next couple of weeks. She already has incredible pressure on her and is well aware that she almost blew her chance entirely. Trying to deal with this on top can't help. 

I was thinking about that earlier how awkward the ranch will be next week. USA Gymnastics needs to implement social media guidelines or sit these girls down for a training since Ashton has also RT things but deleted them. I hope Martha made Gabby go straight from San Jose to the Ranch so she can oversee her training. Since all of Gabby's social media posts look like they are coming from someone else. Seriously the 15 year old Ragan Smith has been the most mature out of all the alternates. I loved her quote afterwards "I am excited to go to Rio". Clearly Ragan's parents, Kim and Chris are doing whatever they are doing correctly.

Found this on Kim's instagram that is how you make your gymnast feel special!

Edited by choclatechip45
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On 7/11/2016 at 9:17 AM, Misslindsey said:

I could not get that worked up about Gabby's coaching change when it is just the assistant coach that she changed to. I would have thought she changed gyms or something with the way Al and Tim were going on about it. I mean it is strange, but Gabby was working with both Kitta and Christian, so her sticking with just Christian did not seem like that big of deal.

It would probably be less of a deal is she hadn't already earned the reputation for jumping to different gyms. The ESPNW article linked by @choclatechip45 gave me a lot more insight into why the current coaching situation is being discussed so much. Gabby has kind of courted these questions 

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5 hours ago, azshadowwalker said:

It would probably be less of a deal is she hadn't already earned the reputation for jumping to different gyms. The ESPNW article linked by @choclatechip45 gave me a lot more insight into why the current coaching situation is being discussed so much. Gabby has kind of courted these questions 

But Gabby didn't really "gym hop," as the article implied. After taking her post-London break from training and competing, she returned to Liang Chow's gym, then left to go back to LA and join a gym there. It seems she left Iowa because of the financial/contractual issues that were developing with Chow. After a few months, she returned to Chow and trained with him while the lawyers and agents tried to work things out with him. Perhaps she didn't receive the level of coaching she needed at the L.A. gym? She has been quoted as saying that she really wanted to keep Chow as her coach--and he has said the same thing about Gabby. But when the business aspect of training didn't work out with Chow, she began to seek another gym and coach. 

 

21 hours ago, MostlyC said:

Possible reason why Gabby turned in a less than stellar performance?

http://www.mercurynews.com/sports/ci_30116501/gabby-douglas-ordeal-disclosed-after-making-olympic-team
 

Can someone please tell Natalie Hawkins to stop talking? Even Gabby said, "Really, Mom?" during the interview. I guess you can't tell your mom to STFU. In any event, I didn't notice Gabby favoring her knee or limping during the trials, so whatever knee injury she'd had in the past, it seems to have healed. But maybe, like Steph Curry in the NBA finals, her knee simply wasn't as strong as is usually is, and it affected her performances. A weak knee would certainly affect her balance on the beam. 

 

13 hours ago, choclatechip45 said:

Someone photoshoped her picture where Gabby is in the team photo. Skinner Retweeted the picture basically and than deleted the Retweet.

Especially since USA Gymnastics apparently had a talk with her after the N word debacle.

Stay classy, MyKayla. *sarcasm*

Someone asked about Gabby's reaction to negative social media. I seem to remember her stating that she tries to avoid social media that mentions her name, and she lets her sisters and brother be her social media "bodyguards." The poor girl had a tough time in 2012, right after winning the AA gold medal, when people on Twitter, mainly Black women, unfortunately, commented about her "jacked up" hair. Of note, Gabby has long, thick hair and wore it in a bun during the Olympics. But she also had a lot of barrettes and pins in place to keep it secure. It wasn't as pretty as Aly's bun, but who cares? 

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I assume the drive to win trumps all, but if I were running Team USA (from the couch in my sweatpants eating cookies, obvi) I'd kick Skinner to the curb right quick. For an alternate to be running her mouth/twitter like that, on multiple occasions, is just not worth it. It's toxic to the team and Gabby needs to be part of the team, which already seemed to be an issue at the trials when it looked like she was pretty isolated from the other girls.

Bump up Nichols and call it a day.

Edited by hendersonrocks
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59 minutes ago, topanga said:

Stay classy, MyKayla. *sarcasm*

Someone asked about Gabby's reaction to negative social media. I seem to remember her stating that she tries to avoid social media that mentions her name, and she lets her sisters and brother be her social media "bodyguards." The poor girl had a tough time in 2012, right after winning the AA gold medal, when people on Twitter, mainly Black women, unfortunately, commented about her "jacked up" hair. Of note, Gabby has long, thick hair and wore it in a bun during the Olympics. But she also had a lot of barrettes and pins in place to keep it secure. It wasn't as pretty as Aly's bun, but who cares? 

I feel sorry for female athletes having to go through this crap.  Can you imagine if we did that to male athletes and people posting things like:

"I don't care if LeBron James lead his team to a championship...I just want to talk about how jacked up his hair looked doing it".

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12 minutes ago, qtpye said:

Can you imagine if we did that to male athletes

But we do do this to male athletes. Even if he wins the AA again, people will still go on and on about why doesn't Kohei Uchimura shave his armpits.

Skinner would have to do something pretty bad to get kicked off the team at this point. Media training is definitely in need for her. Or a social media fast. Or something.

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Yesterday morning the Today show had a "Where Are They Now?" segment with the "Magnificent Seven" gymnasts from the 1996 Women's Olympic team. It was nice to see Dominique Dawes, Shannon Miller, Dominique Moceanu, and the rest. But they all look very different from their 14-19 year-old selves. They're very pretty women and don't look like victims of bad plastic surgery, but I didn't recognize anyone until the interviewer said their names (except for Dominique Dawes and Amy Chow, by process of elimination). It was nice to see that Shannon Miller has been cancer-free for five years, though I wish it were longer (ovarian cancer is a scary and aggressive disease).

Edited by topanga
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Martha should take away all of their phones for training camp and through the Olympics. MyKayla obviously can't handle it, and it's unfortunate Ashton can't either. Such poor sports. 

I really hope none of the five get injured so MyKayla and/or Ashton get to fill in.

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Shannen was great on color analysis on the live streaming from London, hope NBC has her on again.

I can't believe it's been 20 years since the Mag 7! God, that makes me feel old. Imagine if social media had existed back then. 

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I am truly shocked that Marta doesn't seize all social media devices as soon as the team is chosen.   Give them plain old, no-text, dumb phones to call their families.  Also a stern warning that texting, tweeting, posting anything negative about anyone or anything related to the the team, teammates, training, or team selection will be grounds for a one way ticket home, post haste.

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25 minutes ago, Minneapple said:

Shannen was great on color analysis on the live streaming from London, hope NBC has her on again.

I can't believe it's been 20 years since the Mag 7! God, that makes me feel old. Imagine if social media had existed back then. 

You want old?  It's been 32 years since Mary Lou Retton, 40 years since Nadia Comaneci, and 44 years since Olga Korbut.

Now excuse me while I go yell at some kids to get off my damn lawn.

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No. I understand a little bit the teenage girls retweeting stuff about how they deserved a spot, but to retweet a photo of the team where a black girl has been erased for a blond-haired white girl? With a monkey emoji? Just no. No excuse for that. Especially when you have a history like hers on social media.

Also I see gifs on Skinner's twitter of her doing the dab. Ironic, no? Someone should tell her.

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35 minutes ago, PoshSprinkles said:

 

As for MyKayla, I don't condone her behavior, but I understand where it's coming from. At 19, she has little chance of making another Olympic team and that has to hurt. It probably hurts even more to know that, aside from coming in first place at trials, she stood no chance of making the team because it had already been decided before trials started. Add in the fact that two of the people on the team have already had their "shot" and one of those people is being given a shot because she "just needs some time for Martha to get her in shape" and you have the perfect recipe for a meltdown. 

Sorry I don't get it. Are they not allowed to have more than one shot at the  Olympics? As other have pointed out it looks really bad when you retweet stuff erasing a black girl out and replacing her with a blond white girl. Madison was 8th right? So why do that with Gabby? From what others have said about her history on social media she gets no benefit of the doubt from me

                    These women have a enough pressure on them because they are such heavy favorites to win. They don't need added distractions or stress because one of the alternates is a bitter bad sport.

Edited by shoregirl
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On 7/11/2016 at 9:36 PM, KFC said:

Just thought I'd mention, for 2020, they're reducing the team size even further. Only FOUR athletes per team, but an additional two athletes can attempt to qualify for event finals as individuals. For example, had that been in effect for Rio, imagine if, say, Skinner and Locklear were brought along to compete for vault and bars finals but not as part of the team competition.

Will team member still be eligible to qualify for EF or are they only able to do team/AA?

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45 minutes ago, Minneapple said:

No. I understand a little bit the teenage girls retweeting stuff about how they deserved a spot, but to retweet a photo of the team where a black girl has been erased for a blond-haired white girl? With a monkey emoji? Just no. No excuse for that. Especially when you have a history like hers on social media.

As a blond-haired white girl, I couldn't agree more. There's no amount of self-induced meltdown that justifies racism. I also don't understand how this problem should be solved by media training. If she is, in fact, a racist (not saying she is, but there are some very questionable choices pointing in that direction) then it's a much bigger problem than "Honey, some people don't like it when you use monkey emojis to indicate black people, so please hold off while you're in the public eye." At least she's outed herself so I know not to feel bad for her or root for her in the future. Ugh. Go away.

Team Gabby. She made it fair and square and although I wasn't totally on board with them selecting her because she's been so shaky, I'm now rooting for her 100%.

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