With the Tokyo 2020 Summer Olympics postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, they are finally set to kick-off on July 23, 2021, putting the world's top athletes on the grandest stage.
For me, the Olympics are such a fascinating event because sports that I would never normally watch get to be front-and-center, turning medal-winners into household names throughout the world. When I think of athletes like Jackie Joyner-Kersee, Simone Biles, Carl Lewis, and Michael Phelps, I can remember where I was when I watched them dominate in their events. I also remember the sense of patriotism and pride I had watching as they stood on the podium to receive their medals alongside the American flag.
In the sports card hobby, an event like this presents an interesting opportunity. I always like to talk about "relevancy" when discussing which cards I typically invest in. A good example was in January, when I was at the Dallas Card Show and saw a tweet from Adam Schefter that Detroit Lions quarterback Matthew Stafford was about to be traded. I immediately bought up every Matthew Stafford rookie card that I could find, knowing that once the trade went down, Stafford would be in the public spotlight, likely sending the value of his cards soaring. Sure enough, he was traded that night and within a week I sold all of the Stafford cards I purchased, tripling my money.
Soccer is the most popular sport throughout the world, and while the United States men's national team (USMNT) failed to qualify this year (for the third consecutive time), the women's team (USWNT) is absolutely dominant, winning the gold medal in 1996, 2004, 2008 and 2012 before losing in the quarterfinals to Sweden in 2016.
After the game, there was a lot of tough talk from USWNT goalie Hope Solo calling the Swedish team "cowards" because of their style of play and saying the the "better team lost." Amazingly, they won't have to wait long for payback, as they drew Sweden in the first game of this year's Olympics.