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View Full Version : Mark Spitz is upset....



scyfreestyler
August 11th, 2008, 02:47 PM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/afp/20080811/en_afp/oly2008swimusaspitz

JoeBob
August 11th, 2008, 03:12 PM
Yup, somebody dropped the ball and he's rightfully upset. But he's just a little too full of himself.

gobears
August 11th, 2008, 03:18 PM
Oh brother. I don't think Spitz even holds a candle to Phelps. I hope Phelps remains a bit more grounded if he breaks Spitz's record. I think his mom will keep his head from overly-inflating...

hofffam
August 11th, 2008, 03:22 PM
Jeez...... Spitz is full of it.

"Reminds me of myself"

"I could have won the 50M too if they had it"

He should be thrilled that his name is used in every article written about Phelps!

mattson
August 11th, 2008, 03:43 PM
Yeah, that article puts Spitz in a pretty bad light.

Although I do wonder if the writer picked questions and edited responses to make Spitz look more petty (than he would of seemed if we saw the whole conversation).

funkyfish
August 11th, 2008, 04:36 PM
WTF?

Maybe Phelps has a better chance because he's not having to lug around a gianormous ego like Mark? I've swam with drag shorts on in many practices, but I don't think I could pull that ego even 25m. But then again, I'm no Mark Spitz.

Seriously though, isn't the competition of today much stiffer than back in '72? I'd have to resort to an encyclopedia (or wikipedia) to check that one out.

I hope that the story was edited to make Mark look egomaniacal, but who knows?

SwimStud
August 11th, 2008, 05:00 PM
I'll just like to add: Let's remember this is the same press that brings us all the real news like Britney's custody battle, Amy crack addicition and the Heath Ledger Death circus.

Please remember they ask a bunch of questions and put only a few select cuts in. I wouldn't take that as being verbatim or in it's entirety. I could be wrong.

USMSarah
August 11th, 2008, 05:01 PM
First of all, I believe that Spitz should have been invited to the Games. They are making a huge issue over Phelps breaking his "record" - and it would have been a great PR move to have him there - as well as symbolic - to pass along the torch - if Phelps even ties or one ups him.

Secondly - Spitz has a huge ego from all the hype since he won the 7 golds... listen to him talk in interviews lately - I'm not just talking about his article. That 50 Free comment sealed the deal - he's pretty full of himself!

I will be pretty darn pleased if Phelps ties or wins 8 golds, that way we can MOVE on.

:agree:

knelson
August 11th, 2008, 05:03 PM
Could someone who lives near Mark Spitz do me a favor? Drive your car out in front of his house and start blasting Bruce Springsteen's "Glory Days" from your car stereo. :oldman:

The Fortress
August 11th, 2008, 05:53 PM
Yeah, it'd really suck to have to go to the Olympics just to go ...

What a egomaniacal idiot. He'd probably like everyone to bow in his presence too.

If the newspaper edited his responses, they'd have to show the edits. I just see a lot of direct quotes. True, they could have left out any words of praise he had for Phelps. But, still, Spitz sounds truly awful.

FlyQueen
August 11th, 2008, 06:03 PM
I've never read or seen an interview with Spitz where I didn't think he was an egotistical arse. I like humble athletes ...

msgrupp
August 11th, 2008, 06:07 PM
So can someone tell me why the Russian swimmer Popoff (spelling) was handing out the bronze medals at the event on Sunday night?
While the silver and gold winners had some Olympic official type (including a woman wearing a Moslem/Muslim head covering handing out the silver)?

fanstone
August 11th, 2008, 06:52 PM
Popov is a member of the International Olympic Committee, and he also is president or something of the Russian Swimming Federation. Anyway, he was there as a member of the Olympic Committee, however his being there in the swimming events is on purpose. The lady in "arab" clothes is a former Egyptian Olympic swimmer, also a African record holder in some event.

tjrpatt
August 11th, 2008, 06:54 PM
Who cares if he is upset. He had his time and he is still talked about in the sport.

Frank Thompson
August 11th, 2008, 07:04 PM
First off I take issue with Spitz saying he would have won the 50 Meter Free at the 1972 Olympics. There was a person on the 1972 Olympic team that never, ever lost at the Championship level in the 50 Free from 1969 to 1972. His name was David Edgar and he swam for Tennesse and he beat Spitz all 3 times they raced at the NCAA Championships. There was no Long Course 50 Meter Free back in those days so its hard to make a standard comparison but David Edgar had World Best times from that era so I don't think he would have beaten Edgar. Perhaps there are others out there that remember Edgar.

I am not really suprised that the IOC or FINA did not pay for Mark Spitz to be in attendence at the Olympics. He was quoted saying things about both the IOC and FINA officials that they have not forgotten. I remember him saying something about all they do is stuff food in there mouths and don't do anything for swimming. That isn't the exact quote but its pretty close. This was in regards to there drug policys and other administrative decisions. People like Mustapha Larfaoui, who is the President of FINA and a member of the IOC and Dick Pound, who was the head of the WADA and a member of the IOC both remember those comments and did not like them one bit. There is no way those organizations are going to invite him with that. Gunnar Werner and Cornel Marculescu, both FINA Executive Officials at the time said they did not appreciate his comments about there organization.

There is a saying that if you "Fail to Prepare" then be "Prepared to Fail" and this is a case where Mark did not use his own saying. Making a statement like he did in public to those organizations is failing to prepare because that organization will never extend a favor to you so in this sense you have prepared to fail because they will never invite you to a function like this at there expense.

Big AL
August 11th, 2008, 07:21 PM
What a egomaniacal idiot. He'd probably like everyone to bow in his presence too.

You got it! I grew up in his shadow from a few miles away and he was full of it back then, too. It is Phelps' time for the limelight, now. Spitz would just try to cast a shadow on it every chance he got..... what a goon..... give it up already, sheesh. :violin::snore::shakeshead:

thewookiee
August 11th, 2008, 07:49 PM
someone build him a bridge so he can get over it already.

USMSarah
August 11th, 2008, 09:42 PM
someone build him a bridge so he can get over it already.


love your new avatar. tee hee!

Its a slow show
August 11th, 2008, 10:08 PM
All I can say is thank God he went to Indiana and had "Doc" to mature him a little. I knew Mark when is was eight years old and his "Daddy" used to towel him off in the dressing room. Fantastic swimmer, no doubt, but thank God I did'nt have to deal him day after day. He is one of those special cases where the victories just don't over-shadow is self-rightous self-preceived endowement.

ALM
August 11th, 2008, 10:13 PM
He should have asked NBC to fly him to Beijing. Then they could show him in the stands sitting next to Mrs. Phelps or President Bush or Gold Medal Mel.

funkyfish
August 11th, 2008, 10:50 PM
So…we're watching the swimming, Phelps just got another gold, yadda, yadda, yadda. They pan in the crowd just before the women's 100 breast, and show Ian Thorpe in the stands. So my question is, who invited him?

hofffam
August 11th, 2008, 11:01 PM
So…we're watching the swimming, Phelps just got another gold, yadda, yadda, yadda. They pan in the crowd just before the women's 100 breast, and show Ian Thorpe in the stands. So my question is, who invited him?

Maybe he paid his own way? Maybe the Aussies paid....but Thorpe hasn't been a complete d*ck like Spitz.

chaos
August 11th, 2008, 11:16 PM
mark spitz' 72 performance is the reason i took an interest in swimming.

probably thousands of others did too. those games were the first time i ever saw anyone swim butterfly. my brothers and i hit the backyard pool to try it out..........in a couple of years i think i will have it if my lower back holds up.

jim thornton
August 11th, 2008, 11:29 PM
Kudos to Frank "Skip" Thompson for a very erudite backstory here.

For what it's worth, I think that for all his alleged egomania, Spitz probably did more to popularize swimming in the US then just about any swimmer before or since.

Looking at it purely from his point of view, imagine if you had been the greatest the world has ever seen in any particular endeavor, be it swimming, dog handling, or stamp collecting. Not just the greatest, but a quantum leap above what had existed before you came along.

Then imagine that the bureaucracy that deals with whatever this activity is--FINA, the American Kennel Club, or the World Philatelist Society, for example--was populated by people that loved that activity but were not necessarily all that good at it themselves. And then, for whatever reason, real or imaginary, the bureacratic elements thought you were not being polite enough to them, that you somehow were obligated to stay on their good side, rather than vice versa.

It would be like Mozart being on the outs with the American Association of High School Music Educators.

Granted, it would be nice if Mozart, or Spitz, was world class in every aspect of their respective lives, including magnanimity. This rarely happens. I don't know about Mozart, but in Spitz's case, isn't it enough that he was just world class in swimming? Doesn't that buy him a free pass for life?

It will be interesting to see if the Phelps legacy leads the same "pig in the python" demographic boom of great masters swimmers a couple decades from now that Spitz, I believe, triggered.

Even the wicked get more than they deserve, somebody once said. Being a jerk in middle age, especially in defense of your life's greatest accomplishments that are fast receding into dimming history, seems to me something we should all forgive...

elise526
August 12th, 2008, 12:20 AM
Kudos to Frank "Skip" Thompson for a very erudite backstory here.

For what it's worth, I think that for all his alleged egomania, Spitz probably did more to popularize swimming in the US then just about any swimmer before or since.

Looking at it purely from his point of view, imagine if you had been the greatest the world has ever seen in any particular endeavor, be it swimming, dog handling, or stamp collecting. Not just the greatest, but a quantum leap above what had existed before you came along.

Then imagine that the bureaucracy that deals with whatever this activity is--FINA, the American Kennel Club, or the World Philatelist Society, for example--was populated by people that loved that activity but were not necessarily all that good at it themselves. And then, for whatever reason, real or imaginary, the bureacratic elements thought you were not being polite enough to them, that you somehow were obligated to stay on their good side, rather than vice versa.

It would be like Mozart being on the outs with the American Association of High School Music Educators.

Granted, it would be nice if Mozart, or Spitz, was world class in every aspect of their respective lives, including magnanimity. This rarely happens. I don't know about Mozart, but in Spitz's case, isn't it enough that he was just world class in swimming? Doesn't that buy him a free pass for life?

It will be interesting to see if the Phelps legacy leads the same "pig in the python" demographic boom of great masters swimmers a couple decades from now that Spitz, I believe, triggered.

Even the wicked get more than they deserve, somebody once said. Being a jerk in middle age, especially in defense of your life's greatest accomplishments that are fast receding into dimming history, seems to me something we should all forgive...

I agree. Seems like the media threw a juicy bone to a pack of dogs. Funny how folks are willing to forgive the imperfections in other athletes. Depends on who you like and what you deem acceptable or unacceptable in life. In other words, it's all a value judgment.

anita
August 12th, 2008, 12:22 AM
mark spitz' 72 performance is the reason i took an interest in swimming.


I lost interest in him as a 12? year old when I was at the Olympic Trials in Long Beach. Wouldn't sign any autographs until my father went up to him and said he was being ridiculous. That autograph only brought a bad taste in my mouth regarding Spitz to me.
My youth coach swam against him (and won) in '68. Said Spitz was the sorest loser he'd ever met.

SwimStud
August 12th, 2008, 08:49 AM
So…we're watching the swimming, Phelps just got another gold, yadda, yadda, yadda. They pan in the crowd just before the women's 100 breast, and show Ian Thorpe in the stands. So my question is, who invited him?

Maybre he just likes to watch swimming. He said that Phelps can't do it to push him on.

smontanaro
August 12th, 2008, 09:06 AM
They pan in the crowd just before the women's 100 breast, and show Ian Thorpe in the stands. So my question is, who invited him?

Maybe the Australian Olympic Committee? Thorpe is one of the Aussie's all time bests (maybe the all time best) and they are a swim-crazed country.

Skip

aquageek
August 12th, 2008, 09:20 AM
Maybe the Australian Olympic Committee? Thorpe is one of the Aussie's all time bests (maybe the all time best) and they are a swim-crazed country.

Skip

I had read where Thorpe was fat and living in LA. He looked pretty good last night. Maybe sitting in the stands will prompt a comeback attempt. He still is one of the most awesome swimmers of all time.

gobears
August 12th, 2008, 09:34 AM
It will be interesting to see if the Phelps legacy leads the same "pig in the python" demographic boom of great masters swimmers a couple decades from now that Spitz, I believe, triggered.

Even the wicked get more than they deserve, somebody once said. Being a jerk in middle age, especially in defense of your life's greatest accomplishments that are fast receding into dimming history, seems to me something we should all forgive...

I don't see Phelps ever being this egomaniacal. It seems his mother has raised him better than that. There are quite a few swimmers who have helped put swimming on the sporting map who don't demand to be treated as gods. Spitz can be as big a crybaby as he wants. He doesn't care whether we "forgive" him or not.

The Fortress
August 12th, 2008, 09:48 AM
Granted, it would be nice if Mozart, or Spitz, was world class in every aspect of their respective lives, including magnanimity. This rarely happens. I don't know about Mozart, but in Spitz's case, isn't it enough that he was just world class in swimming? Doesn't that buy him a free pass for life?

Being a jerk in middle age, especially in defense of your life's greatest accomplishments that are fast receding into dimming history, seems to me something we should all forgive...

No, no free pass. As Amy notes, being an Olympian does not entitle you to be a giant ass. It's rather pathetic, if, in his 50s, he still needs constant stroking of the ego and validation and adulation. I'm sure most Olympians and elite athletes have a fair dose of ego and confidence, but it doesn't need to be out of control.

Sam Perry
August 12th, 2008, 09:55 AM
No, no free pass. As Amy notes, being an Olympian does not entitle you to be a giant ass. It's rather pathetic, if, in his 50s, he still needs constant stroking of the ego and validation and adulation. I'm sure most Olympians and elite athletes have a fair dose of ego and confidence, but it doesn't need to be out of control.

Can I get an AMEN?!

ande
August 12th, 2008, 09:56 AM
spitz = EGO in a Speedo
it's too big to fit inside the cube

lefty
August 12th, 2008, 11:00 AM
Spitz seems to be quite a jerk, and perhaps he is, but do we know him to be any more or less of a jerk than anyone else? It is just conjecture to say that Phelps or Thorpe or anyone else is classier or nicer than SPitz. All that we know for certain is that Spitz is still the 2nd greatest swimmer ever, and it is his standard that Phelps is trying to eclipse. I would love to hear Spitz's take on Phelps. Heck, I think it would be great TV if Costas interviewed him and he was the surly jerk that we believe him to be. I suppose it would be better if he were a nice guy, but really the only intriguing thing about Mark Spitz is that he won 7 gold medals in th '72 Olympics.

hofffam
August 12th, 2008, 11:14 AM
Spitz seems to be quite a jerk, and perhaps he is, but do we know him to be any more or less of a jerk than anyone else? It is just conjecture to say that Phelps or Thorpe or anyone else is classier or nicer than SPitz. All that we know for certain is that Spitz is still the 2nd greatest swimmer ever, and it is his standard that Phelps is trying to eclipse. I would love to hear Spitz's take on Phelps. Heck, I think it would be great TV if Costas interviewed him and he was the surly jerk that we believe him to be. I suppose it would be better if he were a nice guy, but really the only intriguing thing about Mark Spitz is that he won 7 gold medals in th '72 Olympics.

Of course I don't know Spitz. And as pointed out before he was a major factor to raise the profile of swimming in the US. But his ego and arrogance are well documented through most of his life. Read the new biography (I did) and with the full support of Spitz, the book essentially confirms what most people think of Spitz.

The book adds a dimension I didn't know about - the anti-Semitism he was subjected to at varying points in his life. But make no mistake he was supremely confident in his ability and cold to his fellow swimmers.

Spitz is interesting for more than 7 gold medals though. His dominance of freestyle and butterly was incredible. He set 33 WRs in his career (shorter than many today) - about 10 more than Phelps (so far).

It is very disappointing Spitz is acting like baby now. His public statements about Phelps have been very positive overall so this recent tirade is silly and childish.

I agree with others - no free passes for him just because other celebrities have big egos.

lefty
August 12th, 2008, 11:20 AM
Because I didn't do a good job explaining the first time I'll say again, the issue isn't if he is a jerk or not. That is as relevent as the color of his hair.

jim thornton
August 12th, 2008, 11:39 AM
Leslie,

At the upcoming Colony Zones Long Course Masters Swimming Championships/Terrapin Cup, someone--don't know who, don't know when--might happen to raise the issue that I, James Thornton, FINA aged 56, was (am?) a Short Court Yards Zonesman, that is to say, the owner on not one, not two, well, actually, it is two, ALL Time Colony Zones masters records in the 55-59 age group.

Mark Spitz himself may have set 33 world records, but to my knowledge, he is not a Zonesman like me.

Am I arrogant? Am I a "jerk"? Am I affected by braggadocio? Do I truly understand the meaning of the word braggadocio, or, for that matter, its spelling?

These questions are unanswerable.

All I do know is that I expect a certain level of reverence from the Maryland, Northern Virginia, and District of Columbia-area swimming fan community, reverence which includes haute cuisine and hotter massagers.

OH, and ONE MORE THING!

I want, and, in fact, demand, the free pass to which my previous life accomplishments in the George Mason University swimming pool have entitled me and my descendants now and in perpetuity, a free pass that includes the right to evict any redcoats from the annex to the starter mansion in Fairfax like Rich.

The Fortress
August 12th, 2008, 11:56 AM
It's pork rinds in the smallest guest room at Hotel Fortress for you, my friend.

In your dotage, your spelling has seriously gone awry. It's Colonies Zones! Really, I think Muppet could have managed a later start on Sunday for your eminence. You could still be half asleep for the 100 free.

Trichica
August 12th, 2008, 12:34 PM
Here you go--if you go to this site and you can listen to the podcast of 7/22 where Spitz is interviewed by Mike Greenberg about Phelps and the Olympics.

Spitz is asked if he is going to be there to see if Phleps breaks the record...and Spitz says--he is doing the opening ceremony; then going to HK and then coming back to the states to take care of some business and watch it on tv like everyone else.....no mention of not being invited to the games.....

Intersting.

http://sports.espn.go.com/espnradio/podcast/archive?id=2445552
http://assets.espn.go.com/i/espnradio/podcast/images/button_play.gif (javascript:void(0);) http://assets.espn.go.com/i/espnradio/podcast/images/button_download.gif (http://podloc.andohs.net/dloadTrack.mp3?prm=1641xhttp://query-origin.andohs.net/8000A6/content-root3.andomedia.com/origin/mp3/espnradio/bestofmm/bestofmm080722.mp3)
Best of Mike and Mike: 7/22

Mark Spitz will take it as a compliment if Michael Phelps breaks his Olympic records. Brent Musburger offers historical perspective. And Jayson Stark still likes the Cubs.

mattson
August 12th, 2008, 12:53 PM
I had read where Thorpe was fat and living in LA. He looked pretty good last night. Maybe sitting in the stands will prompt a comeback attempt.

I think a Thorpe comeback will need him to be in the pool :drown: instead of sitting in the stands. :notworking:

(I had to... that was too good of a setup.)

elise526
August 12th, 2008, 01:55 PM
Spitz seems to be quite a jerk, and perhaps he is, but do we know him to be any more or less of a jerk than anyone else? It is just conjecture to say that Phelps or Thorpe or anyone else is classier or nicer than SPitz. All that we know for certain is that Spitz is still the 2nd greatest swimmer ever, and it is his standard that Phelps is trying to eclipse. I would love to hear Spitz's take on Phelps. Heck, I think it would be great TV if Costas interviewed him and he was the surly jerk that we believe him to be. I suppose it would be better if he were a nice guy, but really the only intriguing thing about Mark Spitz is that he won 7 gold medals in th '72 Olympics.

I have to agree with you somewhat on the knowledge aspect. It all seems to depend on the agenda of the media. I suspect nearly any elite athlete could be caught in a weak or unflattering moment and thrown to the lions by the media. Of course some elite athletes are more egotistical than others and that just makes it all the more easier for the media to capture it.

I'm routing for Phelps to break Spitz's record whether Spitz is a jerk or not. I do think it amusing though how the media could not resist turning the masses against Spitz to get them routing for Phelps. I guess if that builds an even bigger support base for Phelps then that is not a bad thing. It still, however, is not cool how the media uses people to further its agenda.

SwimStud
August 12th, 2008, 01:59 PM
I have to agree with you somewhat on the knowledge aspect. It all seems to depend on the agenda of the media. I suspect nearly any elite athlete could be caught in a weak or unflattering moment and thrown to the lions by the media. Of course some elite athletes are more egotistical than others and that just makes it all the more easier for the media to capture it.

I'm routing for Phelps to break Spitz's record whether Spitz is a jerk or not. I do think it amusing though how the media could not resist turning the masses against Spitz to get them routing for Phelps. I guess if that builds an even bigger support base for Phelps then that is not a bad thing. It still, however, is not cool how the media uses people to further its agenda.

That was my original point...

tjrpatt
August 12th, 2008, 02:14 PM
"Waaa, I didn't get invited to the Olympics!"

Where is that one guy on ESPN's PTI going to admit that Phelps might actually break Spitz's record. I am so sick of this guy making comments without anything to back it up. Also, even Phelps wasn't doing 8 events, he is still the greatest swimmer to ever walk the earth. Spitz didn't do anything over a 200.

USMSarah
August 12th, 2008, 02:20 PM
Can I get an AMEN?!

Amen!


Sorry, I was a bit late on that one.

;)

RuffWater
August 12th, 2008, 05:39 PM
Do you guys remember when Spitz tried to make a "come back"? He raced Biondi and Jaeger in some made for TV 50 fly. It was hilarious.

BillS
August 12th, 2008, 06:30 PM
Leslie,

At the upcoming Colony Zones Long Course Masters Swimming Championships/Terrapin Cup, someone--don't know who, don't know when--might happen to raise the issue that I, James Thornton, FINA aged 56, was (am?) a Short Court Yards Zonesman, that is to say, the owner on not one, not two, well, actually, it is two, ALL Time Colony Zones masters records in the 55-59 age group.

Mark Spitz himself may have set 33 world records, but to my knowledge, he is not a Zonesman like me.

Am I arrogant? Am I a "jerk"? Am I affected by braggadocio? Do I truly understand the meaning of the word braggadocio, or, for that matter, its spelling?

These questions are unanswerable.

All I do know is that I expect a certain level of reverence from the Maryland, Northern Virginia, and District of Columbia-area swimming fan community, reverence which includes haute cuisine and hotter massagers.

OH, and ONE MORE THING!

I want, and, in fact, demand, the free pass to which my previous life accomplishments in the George Mason University swimming pool have entitled me and my descendants now and in perpetuity, a free pass that includes the right to evict any redcoats from the annex to the starter mansion in Fairfax like Rich.

Hey, Bobbyjimmy, take a lesson in graciousness from a true champion
:

[QUOTE]There is a Michael Phelps you don’t see.

Many people do not know that Phelps will typically go out of his way for the media. He will always stop to answer questions or give a quick quote. Yes, there are times that his schedule prevents this, but it is rare for him not to take the time if he has it.

This side of Phelps rang true today during his press conference, as he showed a graciousness that we could only wish upon every other athlete out there.

With just two questions remaining and time running out, a local reporter posed a question. It was a long one - perhaps a minute in length. It was also one that Phelps found some humor in – as did every other journalist in attendance.

The humor? It was due to the fact that the translated audio was not working to Phelps’ earpiece, and try as he might to comprehend, the language barrier did not give him the ability to.

Another local journalist attempted to remedy the situation and quickly translate, but it went woefully wrong. After a brief few moments, the moderator simply chose to move on to the next question.

But there was Phelps, stopping the moderator dead in his tracks, in an effort to have someone translate the question so that he could answer it. Graciousness. Poise. Maturity.

The question? Something about mathematics.

The answer? “I am terrible at math. Math was always my worst subject in school.”

In the grand scheme it was a question that would not have been missed. But to that reporter, it meant something. Phelps respected that, and in the process earned an added respect from all in attendance.

chaos
August 12th, 2008, 06:55 PM
remember folks;

mark spitz won his gold medals without cap and goggles. he also had a hamster glued to his face......and leroy neiman stalking him so give the guy a break already.

Flurpo
August 12th, 2008, 08:08 PM
Spitz was incredible back then. I remember watching him just murder the competition in the 72 games. It was so much like Phelps today. If I remember correctly he was also very gracious with the media. It sent me and most of you here today to the pool. In my book he deserves a pass for those comments. I glad he is getting all this attention. He deserves it.

hofffam
August 12th, 2008, 09:07 PM
remember folks;

mark spitz won his gold medals without cap and goggles. he also had a hamster glued to his face......and leroy neiman stalking him so give the guy a break already.

Uh.....so what? No one else he raced wore a cap and goggles. It was his choice to have a mustache. He was awesome.

But Phelps has much more attention to deal with. The internet. He is a professional with the pressure of sponsors. I think swimming is more competitive globally now.

This doesn't reduce one bit the significance of Spitz. And it doesn't excuse his arrogance.

USMSarah
August 13th, 2008, 10:26 AM
http://www.swimnetwork.com/blogs/blog/20080813/dear_spitz__are_you_kidding_me_-1149.html


:)

gull
August 13th, 2008, 07:25 PM
Article from the NY Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/14/sports/olympics/14spitz.html?ref=olympics

ALM
August 13th, 2008, 10:30 PM
Article from the NY Times:
http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/14/sports/olympics/14spitz.html?ref=olympics

I had never heard this story before:



After Spitz earned a bachelor’s degree at Indiana, he had his big moments in Munich. He was 22, unbelievably flexible, gifted and ambitious. And unbelievably prone to controversy.

In the 200-meter freestyle, the best in the field were Spitz and his teammate Steve Genter. Six days before the 200 heats, Genter sustained a partly collapsed lung. Doctors cut open his chest, drained the fluid and stitched him up. They told him to forget about swimming in the Olympics.

Genter swam anyway, with his surgeon at poolside, just in case. Genter made it through his heat and semifinal, but in the final, after the first of the four laps, stitches broke. One lap later, there was blood in the pool.

With all that, Genter was leading with 25 meters to go. But he was spent. Spitz raced past him and beat him by 6 feet.

After the race, an angry Genter said Spitz had tried to talk him out of competing. Genter did not take it as advice from a caring teammate, just an old-fashioned psych job.

“He said I might hurt myself again,” Genter told reporters at the time. “I just don’t believe in this guy at all. Nothing would have pleased me more than to beat him, but I just couldn’t do it.”

gull
August 14th, 2008, 09:48 AM
Spitz was interviewed by Matt Lauer on the Today Show and was very gracious:



http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/26195324#26195324

USMSarah
August 14th, 2008, 10:04 AM
Spitz was interviewed by Matt Lauer on the Today Show and was very gracious:



http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/26195324#26195324

I'm guessing someone told him to not act like a diva on national television.

elise526
August 14th, 2008, 11:58 AM
Spitz was interviewed by Matt Lauer on the Today Show and was very gracious:



http://today.msnbc.msn.com/id/21134540/vp/26195324#26195324

Thanks, gull. Great interview.