Should pros compete in the olympics?

I disagree with pros in the games. The spirit and integrity of the Olympics has been lost. How are the smaller nations supposed to compete with NBA stars, most of the other countries have a handful of “pros” if any at all. We can also look at the former Soviet Union, their athletes were not classified as professionals, but that is exactly what they were. They trained 8 hours a day, didn’t have a job and were financially supported by the government. With so much corporate sponsorship now, many of the athletes could be considered pros. Guess it’s hard to define amateur, but i am referring to the big money guys. Soon we will see athletes sporting corporate logos on their uniforms. Maybe it is simply too expensive to host and run the games in today’s world without this format. Have these professionals brought anything other than controversy, corruption, arrogance and drugs?

Do you want the best, or not?
Me, I don’t much care. I pay about as much attention to the Olympics as I do to the Academy Awards. Save that I’ve got a great hockey jersey with Andre’s anti-Beijing Olympic design… but that’s political.
Which reminds me: what integrity?

Um, athletic excellence?

Look, not everyone has the ability to pay for their training by working at a high-salaried job. For athletes, it makes sense to get paid to develop their athletic skills. Assuming that they pass the drug tests, then I have no problems with their participation. In fact, I think its great. :bravo:

Who actually watches the Olympics anyway? The Beijing thing has been foul from the word go. It isn’t redeemed by the heartwarming sight of unpaid people swimming, jumping, running, etc. It’s obscene.

No, I want the best Amateurs.

Again with the term Amateur, I am in favor of athletes getting financial support from the government or sponsors. Many nations offer a training program that provides a roof and food, not much profit. Are they professionals in the same sense that NBA and MLB multi-millionaire athletes are?

Sportsmanship and fair play.

The Olympics have always had that.

Are you kidding? Hundreds of millions worldwide. However, I’m sure with all the political issues surrounding China, there are far less viewers for these games. The opening ceremonies were excellent!

But do professionals really take away from that? Simply because they make their living from athletics, they are less likely to exhibit those qualities? I don’t get it.

Conversely, “controversy, corruption, arrogance and drugs” are not at all the exclusive province of pros.

I’m not referring to individuals possessing these qualities. I’m talking about providing a level playing field.

No, I want the best Amateurs.

Again with the term Amateur, I am in favor of athletes getting financial support from the government or sponsors. Many nations offer a training program that provides a roof and food, not much profit. Are they professionals in the same sense that NBA and MLB multi-millionaire athletes are? [/quote]
I don’t understand the rational.

You want the best athletes of sports that have no professional market, and the best that haven’t yet cracked the pros.
Ok.
But what do you say to an athlete facing the choice of giving up 2 or 3, or maybe 6 or 7 years of a professional career in order to go for Olympic gold? In most sports, that IS a career. What’s the rational for demanding that kind of individual sacrifice?

Huh? You only understand the irrational! Must be a Canadian thing.

cough cough “rationale” cough cough

:smiling_imp:

Huh? You only understand the irrational! Must be a Canadian thing.

cough cough “rationale” cough cough

:smiling_imp:[/quote]Yeah, that’s Jaboney hitting the first hurdle in the Olympic spelling bee.
Ah, who am I kidding? I’ve been knocking them suckers down all day.
My brain must be low on beer or something.

[quote=“whitetiger”]
I’m not referring to individuals possessing these qualities. I’m talking about providing a level playing field.[/quote]

What’s not level? The best athletes compete fairly. It was to ensure a level playing field that pros were originally allowed to compete, as the old amateur system was easily subverted.

Ditto. Why would anyone have to give up 2 or 3 let alone 6 or 7 years? Let’s stick with the NBA for this example. Instead of using the pros, they would send college players. Four years from now they do the same thing and choose the 12 best guys. If they haven’t been chosen from their college teams, they probably wouldn’t have been chosen from the pros either. Given that the Olympics is every 4 years, I guess the timing may not be favorable for everyone, maybe that is what you are referring to, but they have to choose. The best athletes start to get attention at 15, 16, 17. So if we add 4 to that, most of them would get to play before they start as pros anyway. You could also amend the rules to avoid this. Boxing has not yet introduced the pros, will they? I say we get golf in the games!

Young people running and jumping about to sell Nike and Coke. Who cares if they’re pros or not? Its just a huge advertisement.
So far, all I’ve seen of the Olympics is a close up of the face of some local weightlifter, her face pitted and horribly pockmarked thanks to drug abuse.
My, the Olympics really are fantastic!

I have long argued that the Olympics - Full pharmaceutical would be a far more interesting prospect. Imagine the freaks they could develop if they weren’t trying to hide their efforts!

HG

don’t many american teams refuse to release their best players in basketball and baseball for the olympics, anyway? a non-point, really, as i don’t have any interest at all in those two sports.

there are only a minority of sports in which the players receive top money. football, tennis, maybe basketball and baseball would be the only ones with serious income. maybe boxing. golf and american football don’t even get an Olympic guernsey. all the otehr sports at the games are, in money terms, decidedly minor. how much does a top handball player receive? water polo? shooting? show jumping? sailing? judo?

who cares? all sports men and women good enough to get into the olympics all have a serious professional attitude, or they woudln’t be there. that’s more important than the endorsements they get. the concept of an amateur is kaput, dodo-ised, long dormant, extinct.

and HGC: they already have full-on drug-allowed competitions. they might not be all together in one venue, but just look at WWF, baseball, gridiron, powerlifting, etc…

keep the drugs out.

recreational drugs is another matter, but drugs in sport simmly means the best doctor wins, nt the sportsman. and there is a real toll, but it’s rarely seen on the pro field: it’s in the junior leagues, in the school gym, in the seedy boxing bars that that one is waged and lost.

But even in these sports there’s still some effort to hide the efforts. I’m talking shotputters with 20ft long right arms. Runners with the grafted legs of cheetahs, swimmers with dolphin tails, etc. All chemo and surgically constructed freaks! Come on medicine, give it your all!

HG

Right. And sport at the Olympics is simply a way for countries to show how much they’re willing to spend on sport. Or did you think America , Russia or China or wherever tops the medal table because their athletes are somehow better than others? :laughing: The whole thing’s just a con designed to sell sneakers and fizzy drinks and to bolster the good old jingoistic nationalism that lets gullible fools forget for a second how fucked up their countries really are.

Prostitutes in the olympics? Sounds fair enough to me.

But even in these sports there’s still some effort to hide the efforts. I’m talking shotputters with 20ft long right arms. Runners with the grafted legs of cheetahs, swimmers with dolphin tails, etc. All chemo and surgically constructed freaks! Come on medicine, give it your all!

HG[/quote]
On another forum someone said why limit it to medicine? How about a cybernetic cannon surgically grafted onto shot putters?