questionswho else thinks that the "two-per-country rule…


Yep. It doesn't make much sense. I guess if we have 3 really good gymnasts, one of them should become a Canadian citizen so they have a chance to win gold.
Pretty soon they'll have rules like "If your country won last time, you can't compete this year so someone else has a chance to win." Lame.


Yea, pretty ridiculous. As Bela Karolyi said in his interview last night -- it should be the top of all of the gymnasts, regardless of what country they came from -- if the US had 4 of the top 24, so be it.


i agree...if the purpose is to find the best all-around gymnast, then this system does not make sense. i understand that they're trying to make it more fair by giving each country a chance to be represented in the all-arounds, but how is it fair to the fantastic gymnasts that end up being left out because they ended up 3rd on their team?


This is a side effect of group rights. The individual is subordinated for the benefit of the group. Of course it's unfair to the individual, but the group (in this case country) is supposed to benefit. Welcome to the new fairness. It's happening in more than just the Olympics.


I also think it's dumb. I thought the point of the Olympics was to show the best, regardless of where they're from.


The "everybody gets a trophy for showing up!" mentality is creeping into the Olympics. Sad.


Seems silly, but still going in Jordyn knew she had to be in top 2. Heartbreaking she didn't make it, very sad. But the rule makes a little more sense when you take into consideration there is an all around team event, so it's slightly more understandable they don't want essentially a team taking over the individual all arounds.

Remember, these kinds of rules have turned up in part because of communist countries such as China, USSR, etc back in the 70's and 80's bringing huge numbers of pro athletes to the Olympics which used to be amateur contests. We wouldn't like it if China was able to fill the whole individual field with athletes and then sweep the team all around too.

Not saying I totally agree, but I can kind of see both sides of it.


It's gymnastics. Although it's super popular, it's also badly flawed and political with respect to the judging. I think it's as corrupt, if not more, as figure skating.


@meh3884: Maybe we wouldn't like it, but we'd suck it up and deal with it. The Olympics should be about finding and awarding the very best in the world. If the very best gymnasts all happen to be from China or Russia, so be it.

How are our giant professional basketball players doing against the rest of the world, by the way?


@voxitage: Lol, you mean how we are sucking it up and dealing with it right now? Again, I think the rule is quite silly, but I can understand what their objective was in creating it. That's all.

Don't get your point about basketball, though. The Olympics used to be amateurs only, it hasn't been in many years for most sports. Also, I don't follow basketball so if we are doing poorly or really well it has nothing to do with my point, which was about the objective of the rule, not how it works in play. Though the gymnastics rule has nothing to do with basketball, so again, I'm not sure what you were getting at.


idk, i would like the olympics to be "the best in the world," but the olympics is otherwise already set up to maximize nation-by-nation participation. Each nation sends a team, rather than the olympics simply taking the top 20 or 30 ranked people in each sport. imho, limiting the final to two people per nation is just an extension of this principle.

no1 no1

@no1: I agree to an extent on that as well. In a sense (and I stress in some sense), the Olympics aren't about "the best in the world", but largely about competition between the nations of the world. During the events, this is sometimes on an individual basis, sometimes on a team basis, but ultimately on a national team basis, across all sports. There are many, many other event for each of these sports that measure and reward individuals on grand stages, such as world championship and world cup events.


China seems to be doing very well.


China may to be doing too well. They had a swimmer drop 5 seconds off of her personal best to win the 400IM. A 5 second drop is unheard of. Her time in the free leg would've beaten Ryan Lochte.


I always thought it should be open competition, but I don't get to make the rules.


Of course it makes sense. After all, we have become a culture where everyone who wants to play gets to play and everyone wins a trophy. So now, all countries get to win a medal. The Olympic Games are becoming a joke anyway.... pack in the professional athletes and forget about sportsmanship.... might as well just sell the medals and be done with it. Any my wife wonders why I would rather watch reruns of Gilligan's Island .....


Worth noting: It's not just an gymnastics thing.

The third best table-tennis player in the world is probably sitting at home right now wondering why they have these stupid rules that limit the tournament to two people per country so that weaker countries like the US can still send players.


I believe the limitation exists to counteract the advantages of wealthy countries. The Olympics isn't a challenge to find the best as much as it's a peaceful competition among nations. If select countries have obscene advantages due to their economy providing better training, than poor nations, it wouldn't be the Olympics as we know it.

I'm ok with any limitation for the purpose.