London Olympics 2012: Pick ‘Em Challenge, Day 2

The Summer Olympics in London are about to get underway tomorrow with the Opening Ceremonies. Well, to be fair, the games actually already started. Nevertheless!

Two of our writers, Greg Kaplan and Vinny Ginardi, and fellow Marist College grad and reigning Marist “Mr. Everything” Pete Rynkowski, have undertaken ESPN’s Pick ‘Em Challenge for the games this year, and will try to accurately predict just about every event at this years games, including Men’s Archery.

Some of the best events, the two have decided to share their picks with you and give you some advice and insight. As always, take what these two say with a grain of salt. They aren’t the same since they left college…

Day: 1 

Men’s Basketball: USA vs. France – Pick ‘Em – USA wins by 25+ vs. Any Other Result

VG: I had so much fun with the photos/videos in our first post I decided to keep it going.

How can you pick against this team?

The Pick: USA wins by 25+

GK: I see your photo, and raise you a photo.

I call this: “Blake Griffin and Kevin Love dropped a slide into Coach K’s powerpoint that is incredibly inappropriate, and Tyson Chandler is diggin’ it”.

That’s right, world. These are the best basketball players in the universe. Besides the Monstars.

The Pick: Team USA wins by 25+

PR: This was not the easiest pick for me considering how ridiculously good Team USA is.  But France looks like they could provide some competition.  With Tony Parker leading the way along with a couple other NBA players I think they could cause some problems for Team USA.  Do I think that France has any chance in the world of winning?  Absolutely not, I looked up “Team France basketball” on Google images and there were more pictures of Team USA which tells me enough even if I know nothing about basketball.  So I have Team USA getting a good win anywhere between 12 and 24 points but I think France will keep the loss to less than 25.

The Pick: Team France keeps it within 25

Men’s Judo (-66kg) – Pick ‘Em – Will a competitor from Russia medal?

VG: This is how I decided my pick.

The Pick: Yes

GK: I can only imagine this is how Russians are like in Judo.

The Pick: Yes

PR: Possibly my favorite event in sports, the Men’s Judo in the Olympics rivals only the excitement of the Super Bowl.  Russia has a very talented Judo expert in Mogu Shkov Musa, but he just has too difficult of a road to medal in these Olympics.  His next match against a very talented Karimov Tarlan from Azerbaijan, and even if he somehow manages to win that one he has to go up against the winner of Awad Ahmed from Egypt and Alderei Humaid from The United Arab Emirates.  I just don’t think the Russian can overcome that type of competition.  Even if he looks or fights like the Russian from Rocky, he has 3 Rocky’s to potentially go up against in his next 2 matches.

The Pick: No

Men’s Swimming: 100m Breaststroke – Pick ‘Em- Kosuke Kitajima (JPN) wins gold vs. Any Other Competitor 

VG: If baseball has taught me anything, it’s that athletes named Kosuke are over-hyped.

The Pick: Any Other Competitor

GK: All jokes aside, Kitajima is going up against an American on a hot streak (Brendan Hansen), the world record holder in this event (Brenton Rickard of Australia) and it is emotionally impossible for me to pick against anyone from Israel (Imri Ganiel).

But seriously, Rickard has to be the favorite. World record, people!

The Pick: Any other Competitor

PR: Sorry America, but you’re going to need a miracle to beat Kosuke in this one.  There was really nobody very close to him for the qualifying.  There are only 4 people racing who were within a second of Kosuke for their qualifying times.  He was the only one that was under 59 seconds and that is enough for me.  This will be quite the race but I think the real race will be for the Silver medal because the Gold is going to Japan.

The Pick: Kosuke Kitajima (JPN)

Women’s Swimming: 100m Butterfly – Pick ‘Em- Dana Vollmer (USA) wins gold vs. Any Other Competitor

VG: One thing that I have learned over the past few months is to always trust someone who appears in a Call Me Maybe video.

The Pick: Dana Vollmer (USA)

GK: Have I mentioned that Carly Rae Jepsen follows me on Twitter, and not Vinny? @Kaps_Locked

Hey, haven’t met you. And this seems crazy. All I ask for…just follow Vinny! @VinVin47

Also, seriously, its very hard for me to ever pick against an American at anything. AMERICA!

The Pick: Dana Vollmer (USA)

PR: I wish my swimming knowledge was as good as my Judo knowledge, but this one I am taking Dana Vollmer to win.  She had the fastest qualifying time and that is all I need to know.  There is only 1 swimmer from Sweden, Sarah Sjostrom, who was also under 57 seconds for the qualifying.  So this will be close most likely but I have to go with AMERICA!!

The Pick: Dana Vollmer (USA)

4 thoughts on “London Olympics 2012: Pick ‘Em Challenge, Day 2

  1. Pete, you’re definitely right about judo being an exciting event. Let’s just hope those Drago-esqe Russians don’t completely break the competition this year.

    On the basketball end, the 27 point win over France was almost a sure thing (good call Kaplan), even with the presence of the former Mr. Longoria on the other end. Next up for The USA is Tunisia. Again, They shouldn’t be a problem for us.

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