The Greatest Comebacks in Olympic Games History
The Olympic games have produced some of the most dramatic moments in sports history. Whether it's a cinderella story winning gold or a brave athlete playing through an injury, there's never a shortage of exciting moments.
And there's nothing more exciting than a dramatic comeback. An athlete taking a win out of the clutches of defeat.
Some of these you may have seen, som might have been before your time, but they are all classics. The greatest comebacks in Olympic Games History.
1980 US Men's Hockey Team
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While the victory itself was more impressive than the actual comeback, let's not forget that the US Men's Hockey team was trailing the mighty Soviets 3-2 heading into the third period.
And although they took the lead and held on for dear life with ten whole minutes to go, that's still a comeback for the ages.
Not only that, but they had three come-from-behind victories on their way to one of the most surprising gold medal wins in Olympic history.
Jason Lezak and the US Men's 4x100 Relay Team- 2008
Half a body length behind Frenchman Alain Bernard with 50m to go on the last leg of the 4x100 relay, Jason Lezak pulled off one of the most amazing and improbably finishes in Olympic history.
The announcers had already given up on him and were talking about holding on to second place when, suddenly, Lezak began to close the gap furiously and won the race by a fraction of a second.
What made this even more satisfying was that Bernard had actually boasted that the French team would "destroy" the Americans in this event. Definitely the most amazing comeback I've ever witnessed.
Dave Wottle, 800m- 1972
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Another incredible 1972 comeback (more on that later), American Dave Wottle spent the entire 800m final at the very back of the pack before he dug down and had one of the most inspirational finishes ever.
Just watch the video. The goofy white guy with a golf cap ended up out-kicking the entire field and closed an incredible distance in just 25m.
Wottle wasn't even ranked in the world the year before and still managed to come through with this incredible gold medal performance.
Paul Hamm- 2004
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After a fault on the vault, his fourth event of the all-around competition, Hamm fell to 12th place and looked like he had almost no chance at a medal, much less a gold medal.
But two nearly flawless showings on the parallel bars and the horizontal bars later, along with some missteps by his fellow competitors, and Hamm was able to come away with the gold by the narrowest of margins: .012, which was the closest in Olympic history.
Lasse Viren, 10k Meters- 1972
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Midway through the 10k meter race, the Finnish Lasse Viren got tangled up in an opponents legs and fell. Normally, a fall in a race like this is a kiss of death. Nobody ever recovers from that.
Only, Viren did, and in an incredible amount of time. After falling behind 20-30 meters after the fall, he made up the distance in less than half a lap. And not only did he catch up, but he put himself in position for one of the most dominant kicks the sport had seen up to that point as Viren set the new 10k meter world record.
Setting a world record after a fall? Not bad at all.