Shayla Worley. Hands down. She had the best meet of the day but somehow she still ended up in second place. I’m not knocking Nastia Liukin, who took the title, but Nastia had 2 substantial errors (Vault & Beam) and yet still wound up the winner. How does something like this happen?

Although I don’t want to pass judgement too quickly, I think the new open-ended scoring system is partially to blame. Nastia is a tremendous athlete and she admittedly had more difficulty in her routines than Shayla, but not that much more. Not enough to make up for a large stumble on her vault landing and a fall from the balance beam. Shayla was only a few tenths of a point less than Nastia in the difficulty department. Under the old 10.00 system (where 10.00 was the highest score attainable), I don’t think Liukin would have come out on top. We saw something similar to this in Figure Skating at the Winter Olympics last month. Sasha Cohen had 2 falls in her final program but still took the silver medal. While there are merits to the new scoring systems in both Figure Skating and Artistic Gymnastics, there is something inherently wrong with the system if an athlete who falls (Nastia) can beat an athlete of equal caliber who does not (Shayla).

What do you think?

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