“Is that the color of medal you want?” asked an apparently color-blind reporter.
“I want gold, but that’s close enough,” the 19-year-old replied.
To return the U.S. to the days when it won boxing gold by the handful, he and his teammates will have to deal with a strong British team, tough Russians and fighters from former Soviet republics, and a Cuban squad that’s rebuilding but always difficult.
It’s early, and a lot could still go wrong in a sport where things always seem to go wrong. But with women fighting for the first time next Sunday, and a sport that seems to finally be getting its act together, this may be boxing’s best run in a long time.
For the excited crowd in London, it wasn’t exactly like watching Ali _ known as Cassius Clay when he won the gold in Rome.
But it was a lot better than watching him in the opening ceremonies.
Tim Dahlberg is a national sports columnist for The Associated Press. Write to him at tdahlberg(at)ap.org or http://twitter.com/timdahlberg
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