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Even before his bonkers gold-medal stockpiling in Beijing, the search was on for the key to swimming automaton — and Daily Intel lust object — Michael Phelps’s domination. Earlier this week, in an interview with the Today show, he revealed a piece of the puzzle: Phelps told Hoda Kotb that he was listening to Lil’ Wayne’s “I’m Me” before winning his third gold, in the 200m freestyle. Of course! If anyone knows anything about winning it’s Lil’ Wayne, currently busy dominating the rap game. But Phelps shouldn’t be the only one tapping Wayne’s motivational power — which other Olympians could benefit from some pre-performance Weezy?
1. He Kexin — “Shorty Bounce”
Reports of underage gymnasts on the Chinese team have recently focused on Kexin, who was apparently listed as 13 years old by the country’s official news agency, Xinhua, just nine months before the Olympics (gymnasts must be 16 to compete.) Kexin and the rest of her adorable gold-medalist moppet teammates should have tuned out the detail-obsessed haters with “Shorty Bounce” the only Lil’ Wayne song we know that’s a vague takedown of a former American gymnastics champion. Everybody now: “Yeah, stop, pause, make ‘em Dominique Dawes/ flip a bitch n**** when the shotties go off.”
2. U.S. Men’s Basketball Team — “Pop Bottles”
The “Redeem Team” has already taken the refrain of “Pop Bottles” — “First we take shots, and then pop bottles” — to heart, running through weaker competition to a perfect record in the quarterfinals, staying focused on the larger challenges ahead. In order to stay focused for their first big showdown with Spain tomorrow morning, they should probably ignore the second part —“Flirt with the hoodrats, and then pop models.”
3. Irina Karavayeva — “Sportscenter”
In the intro to this cut off his Dedication 2 mixtape, Weezy lets us know, “I like sports, dog, basically that’s what I’m trying to say. That’s what I’m into. Sports, sports, sports. Every sport… I got a favorite player in every sport.” Which means he’s maybe the only person alive who’s aware that trampoline is an Olympic event. Russia’s Karavayeva, who won the first-ever Olympic gold handed out in the sport in Sydney and is a favorite once again, should be bumping this hard.
4. Anastasia Davydova and Anastasia Ermakova, “Black Democrats”
In the synchronized swimming duet, the connection between the two athletes is so important that twins often compete alongside one another. It can’t hurt Russia’s Anastasia Davydova and Anastasia Ermakova, currently favored in the competition, to study up on Wayne’s eternal bond with fellow M.C. Juelz Santana. The two often collaborate, but have perhaps never sounded better together than on this track, their take on Nas and Jay-Z’s “Black Republicans.”
5. Kimberly Rhode, “Shooter”
This one basically writes itself. On Wednesday, Italy’s Chiara Cainero beat America’s Kimberly Rhode and Germany’s Christine Brinker in women’s skeet shooting. The competition actually came down to a shoot-off, and we can’t help but think if Kimberly had been rocking with some “Shooter,” off Tha Carter II — “I take you to the shootout, baby, win lose or draw / And then they ask who when where how / And, my reply was simply pow!” —she may have pulled this thing out after all. —Amos Barshad
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