Cue up Beyoncé’s “Run the World (Girls),” sports fans! That is the official anthem of Gabby Douglas, women’s gymnastics all-around gold medalist. Not only is Gabby a personal fave for Abby West and me, she’s also today’s Olympic Stud of the Day.
The girl who nearly quit.
The girl the experts doubted could handle the pressure.
The girl who, even tonight, came within millimeters of stepping outside the boundaries.
But she didn’t.
And that’s why she is…
The girl who took it all.
The first African-American to win the all-around gold.
The spunkiest, most endearing women’s gymnast we’ve seen in a long time.
Gabby’s golden moment was nearly a week in the making. “The Flying Squirrel” has been a consistent, undeniably powerful force on Team USA since the qualifiers. More to the point, she was the only member of 2012’s “Fab Five” to compete in all four events at Tuesday’s gold medal-winning team competition. That versatility has made her the very person who managed to take Team USA’s All-Around Olympic success in 2004 and 2008 to dynasty level.
— Michael Phelps, not just by default (he already won!), but also because he took his 16th Olympic gold and showed the cocksure Ryan Lochte (all due respect) what’s what. Glad to see you’ve got your game face on in time for the final two races of your career, old chum.
– Clay “Manly” Stanley, captain of the men’s indoor volleyball team. Bald ambition!
– Deng Linlin, for even being a factor in the women’s gymnastics all-around finals. Seriously. No one outside the U.S. and Russia mattered to NBC. Also, homegirl knows how to rock some spaghetti western-style music and a pair of white ankle socks.
– Dutch swimmer Ranomi Kromowidjojo, because that name is awesome. (The gold medal 100m freestyle didn’t hurt).