Michael Phelps swam the 4th fastest 100m butterly time in the world tonight, and the media headlines are about losing.
This is how we know the media has no clue about elite performance.
Phelps, the greatest swimmer ever, finished second to Ryan Lochte, who may end up as the second best swimmer ever. He did it after taking two years off, gaining 30 pounds, then quietly training back into shape over the last six months.
Today’s placement wasn’t about winning or losing. It was a kickoff. An experiment. The smile he showed in the prelims showed it has elements of a game. It’s fun.
While I’m sure Phelps would have been pumped to win, his results show he still belongs among the world’s elite swimmers. That he could be so competitive after such a short time training should terrify his rivals.