You can put it on the board. America wins again.
Entering the final day of the Tokyo Olympics, the U.S.A was well ahead in total medals won by a country. They would finish with 113 medals total, with China a distant second at 88. It was the second-most at an Olympics since 1984 for the American squad.
And while total medals won is a nice achievement, the grand prize of any Olympiad is the gold medal count. Silver and bronze medals are incredible achievements, but being the best in the world means being at the top of the leaderboard in the most important categories.
The U.S. entered the day behind China in the gold-medal race, with China up 38-36. It set up a photo finish.
When it mattered the most, the U.S. squad turned on the burners, leaving China in the dust.
The women’s basketball team won its seventh consecutive gold medal by beating Japan 90-75 and Jennifer Valente won gold in the women’s omnium in the velodrome. With three events to go for the States — and just one for China — the competition for the most dominant country at the Olympics was deadlocked.
The U.S. women’s volleyball team — winners of three silvers and two bronze medals in their Olympic history — captured their first-ever gold medal by defeating Brazil 25-21, 25-20, 25-14 on Sunday.
“I’m just still in a state of shock,” U.S. women’s volleyball team member Jordan Larson said. “I cried more in the last 24 hours than I think I have in my career. I’m not an emotional player, an emotional person. But I think just the emotions got the best of me. I’m now in kind of this euphoria, a state of shock.”
It gave the U.S. the gold-medal lead by one, and after China’s last gasp at a gold medal — Li Qian lost to Lauren Price of Great Britain in the women’s middleweight division — Team U.S.A finished the Olympics with the most gold medals (39) by any country.
Japan finished third with 27 gold’s and Great Britain had 22 of their own.
It was an Olympics unlike any other, with the Games delayed a year due to the COVID pandemic. Tokyo was in a state of emergency for the entirety of the games, preventing fans from attending the events.
The strangeness of the games seemed to play a role in the lack of interest from the American audience.
According to The Daily Wire, NBC’s ratings were down from the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
Fox News reported some of the Olympics’ disappointing numbers: “NBC’s primetime coverage of the Tokyo Olympics on July 26 averaged 14.7 million viewers — for a 49% drop compared to the equivalent night from the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games and 53% less than the 2012 London Olympics. The opening ceremonies saw their lowest viewership since 1988.”
It certainly didn’t help that there was a good amount of conversation around potential protests by athletes at the Games. The women’s soccer team — who disappointed with a bronze medal — took a knee before their first game of group play, and U.S shot putter Raven Saunders raised her hands above her head to form an “X” after winning silver. Saunders said her gesture was for all the “oppressed.”
But no matter how few watched or how strange the Games were, America beat China. Once again, they were the most dominant nation at the Olympics, a feat Americans can be proud of.
Joe Morgan is the Sports Reporter for The Daily Wire. Most recently, Morgan covered the Clippers, Lakers, and the NBA for Sporting News. Send your sports questions to email@example.com.
The views expressed in this piece are the author’s own and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.
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