RIO DE JANEIRO, Brazil — This year’s U.S. women’s Olympics gymnastics team doesn’t have a nickname — yet. But if this group wins team gold in the Rio Olympics, like the “Magnificent Seven” did in Atlanta in 1996 and the “Fierce Five” at London in 2012, then these women are going to need their own moniker.
As crazy as it sounds, it’s not impossible for Team USA gymnastics to sweep the team and individual gold medals in Rio. This U.S. is that loaded. In addition to winning team gold in London in 2012, Team USA has won team gold at the world championships three consecutive times — 2011, 2014 and 2015 (the team event was not held in 2013).
Here are the names to know in Rio: This year’s five are Simone Biles, Gabby Douglas, Laurie Hernandez, Madison Kocian and Aly Raisman. Ashton Locklear, Ragan Smith and MyKayla Skinner are the alternates if any of the five suffer any injuries.
Raisman’s parents also made headlines on Monday for their (again) squirmy reactions during the competition on Sunday.
At 22, Raisman, of Needham, Massachusetts, is the oldest on the team. She’s also the captain. In addition to being part of the gold-medal team in London, Raisman also won gold on floor exercise.
“We thank everyone for all the support,” Raisman said. “We’re very excited and hope to make everyone back home very proud.”