Welcome back to The Sports Ace, where the Olympic flame never goes out.
Before the Olympics, I wrote a post highlighting some of the athletes with the most to gain financially from their performances at the Games. Now that the Games are over, it’s time to look back and see who truly did the most to create a brand for themselves that they can benefit from in endorsements, etc. now that they’re coming home. This isn’t an all-inclusive list, but it does name some of the biggest winners in my opinion. So, with no further adoue:
- Andy Murray. For years, he’s been the clear fourth-best tennis player in the world, never able to win a major event because Nadal, Federer and Djokovic have dominated in a way tennis buffs have never seen. Well, that changed in a big way, as Murray beat the two of them who were in London on his way to the gold in singles. The man who had the entire weight of Britain on his shoulders when playing at Wimbledon…should now have the weight of all that cash on his shoulders now that he can show off a gold medal to the cameras.
- Missy Franklin. I called this one before the Games, but this 17-year-old phenom put herself on a Phelps-like pace with five medals at her first Olympics, and most of them gold. She’s incredibly likeable, fun-loving (have you seen the “Call Me Maybe” video?) and incredibly talented. The only way she won’t cash in is if she chooses not to – as a high school senior-to-be.
- Gabby Douglas. It’s obvious, really, but the rags-to-riches story combined with all-around and team gold is a powerful combination. In my own chats with friends and family, everyone seems to be most impressed by her. That means green.
- Allyson Felix. That smile, and her performance, should make her a prime candidate to be USA Track and Field’s most marketable name.
- Kayla Harrison. If anyone can break out from a “minor” sport to fame, it’s her. She’s the first American to win gold in judo, and her story of overcoming sexual abuse is jawdropping. Her winning celebration was tearjerking, and one of the best moments of the entire Games. She’s also incredibly likeable, and proved it when she did the “Today” Show and other media. She’s one of my favorite athletes from London 2012, and I hope she’s able to generate some well-deserved cash from her efforts.
That’s all for now. I’m out like anyone running against Usain Bolt.