2008 Olympics and Beyond

Beckett is running a contest where you can write an article about the Olympics and the winning article, voted by the readers, gets published in Beckett Sports Card Monthly.  Here is my submission:

There aren’t too many events in the world that get countries to work together, but the Olympics is one of them.  Whether the Olympics are taking place in the summer or the winter, a few weeks out of the year the world focuses on athletes that don’t always get the media attention they deserve.  This year in particular I think made an impact on people because of all the extra drama that took place with Michael Phelps a.k.a., The Baltimore Bullet, Shawn Johnson, Kerri Walsh, and Misty May-Treanor.  The Olympics shine a light on sports that aren’t the most covered in the world such as swimming, volleyball, track and field, shot-put, and the poll vault.  Having these games promoted on television and the internet can get more people interested in a sport that they may not know too much about.  This specifically can go for Americans because we are constantly bombarded with the same sports all the time: baseball, basketball, football, and hockey.  It is a great learning experience for everyone. 


            Over those few weeks that the Olympics are taking place, the world has their eyes on these hard working athletes.  Sadly though, after the Olympics are over you rarely ever see or hear from those people for at least the next four years.  This happens all the time in the Olympics, except maybe the baseball and basketball players.  Perhaps after this year with all the records being broken things will change and you’ll hear more from these athletes once the games are over. 


            Since the beginning of the Olympics, dating back to its ancient Greek roots, you can see various changes.  One thing that really sticks out to me is that some athletes have become more full of themselves and cocky.  One of the main causes of this is the fact that many athletes are endorsed by major corporations and are making millions of dollars, which a lot of times can go to their heads.  Another change that I would like to see is less “professional” players in the Olympics.  When I say “professional” I mean people that play in the NBA and MLB.  I think it would interesting to get amateur players and build an Olympic team to see what they could do.  Maybe pro teams could discover new talent if amateur athletes got more involved with the games instead of them just sending over their own players. 

You’ll Need DEEP Pockets for this Card

This is a Michael Phelps Upper Deck certified autographed card from the Hawaii 20th Convention.  There are only 10 like this in the entire world and it is catching the eye of many collectors.  With a few hours to go it is well over $1,000.00.  Never in a million years would I have thought an autographed card of a swimmer would be selling for this amount.