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The Hamilton Spectator
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Thursday August 14, 2008
If we are, then here's something else you may have heard before: You get what you pay for at the Olympics. Medals don't fall out of trees - not at the Summer Games. They come through sheer volume of legitimate medal chances, and the countries with most darts come away with the most hardware.

The early results? We're through five days of competition and our batting average is still .000. -- Togo has a medal. Kyrgyzstan has two. Azerbaijan has three. And Michael Phelps has five.

We'll pass them all by the end, barring an absolute disaster, but still, as the calls from editors begin to roll into the press centres here - all looking for the "What's going wrong?" angle that usually doesn't arrive for a few more days at these things - it is clear that Canadians are getting edgy.

Don't forget. There are about a dozen countries in the world who are serious about hockey. Two - Canada and the U.S. - are gold medal threats in women's hockey.

There are 200 countries that take track and field, boxing and swimming seriously.

"I think [we're] disappointed because we had some dreams, or expectation, and it seemed that it was going to be easy. But you can see, nothing's ever easy," said Pierre Lafontaine, the team leader for Canada's swimming team.

His team has posted all kinds of personal bests, but zero results. "There's much more than just medals, but medals is what shows on the books," he admits. More...


Why are we so bad at the Olympics?
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