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Today at the Olympics: An all-around opportunity for men's gymnastics

Posted by Chad Finn, Globe Staff  August 1, 2012 08:00 AM

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LONDON -- The buzz on Day 6 of competition is still more about the events of Tuesday than what's ahead. The headline on The Guardian this morning says it succinctly regarding Michael Phelps and his all-time record 19 medals, a quest he completed Wednesday with a gold in the 4x200 freestyle relay:

phelpsguardian.jpg

And there's still plenty of talk about Jordyn Wieber's redemption and Aly Raisman's impeccable anchor performance as the US women won their first team gold medal in 16 years. Raisman still has the women's all-around Thursday, but given her brilliance Tuesday, they probably should start planning a parade in Needham, right?

Wednesday's must-see event: Medals will be awarded in 11 events, and while nothing probably quite matches the must-watch status of Tuesday's dual blockbusters (NBC's ratings should be enormous), plenty of compelling drama will unfold. The men's gymnastics all-around is the marquee event, with Americans Danell Leyva and John Orozco having legitimate podium hopes. But all eyes will be on Japan's Kohei Uchimura, a silver medalist four years ago who since has been the dominant performer in the sport, with three straight all-around world titles.

Also worth watching: There's plenty more action at the pool, where Japan's Kosuke Kitajima will try to win the 200-meter breaststroke for the third consecutive Olympics. American Nathan Adrian will try to challenge world champion James Magnussen of Australia in the 100-meter freestyle. And big names (Roger Federer, Maria Sharapova, Venus Williams, Novak Djokovic) are in action on the Wimbledon grounds as the third round of singles play gets underway.

Tuesday's big story: Or stories, which you already know well. I've probably looked back enough already in this post that's generally supposed to be looking ahead. But I can't resist posting this clip of Phelps's mom Debbie reacting at the end the 200-meter freestyle when it appeared her son had gold in his grasp, only to end up with silver when South Africa's Chad le Clos touched the wall 0.05 of a second sooner:

Tweets of the day: Twitter has become such an essential way to follow the Olympics (unless your account gets suspended) that it's always tough to pick just one on any day. So the heck with procedure, I'm going to cheat today and go with two on the same subject:

‏Number 18 and 19 for my career so far!!! Omg I'm speechless right now! --- @michaelphelps

And then, a shout-out from POTUS:

Congrats to Michael Phelps for breaking the all-time Olympic medal record. You've made your country proud. -bo — @BarackObama

As Ryan Lochte said Wednesday morning when asked about Phelps getting Twitter props from the president: "That's pretty tight."

Mind the gap, and stick around for further updates.

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