The big story, of course, is Michael Phelps' ascent to the title of Greatest Olympian Ever with his record-breaking 19th career medal. The previous record had been held since 1964 by Soviet gymnast Larisa Latynina. But Phelps' gut-wrenching silver in the 200-meter butterfly and easy gold in the 4×200 meter freestyle has made him the new standard that future Olympians will be measured by.
The other notable gold won by Team USA on Tuesday came from the women's gymnastics team, the first American group to win team gold since Kerri Strug and the Magnificent Seven in 1996. Like the Seven, the so-called "Fab Five" — or "Fierce Five," depending on who you ask — will likely have a vault as the indelible image of their victory, after McKayla Maroney's monstrous attempt scored a stunning 16.233 to give the Americans a huge early lead they would never relinquish.
And let's not forget the high-profile sports teams, either. The women's soccer team beat North Korea 1-0, and the men's basketball team overcame a shaky start to destroy Tunisia, 110-63. Incredibly, the Tunisians actually covered the British betting line, which had them as 55-point underdogs.
After all of that, the U.S. and China were still tied for the lead in the medal count with 23 apiece, although China held a 13-9 advantage in golds. France was a distant third with 11 medals overall.
What does Day Six have in store? Here are some events to keep an eye out for, with all times listed in Eastern Standard Time.
11:15 a.m., NBColympics.com (Live stream) — Women's Team Handball, Great Britain vs. Brazil
Admittedly, this has nothing to do with Team USA. But it's kind of surprising that team handball — something of a cross between lacrosse and basketball — hasn't caught on more in the U.S. Try not to be hooked after watching for five minutes, and cheer on the host country for good measure.
11:30 a.m., NBColympics.com (Live stream — will be shown on NBC in primetime) — Men's Gymnastics All-Around Final
It's the men's turn again, as Danell Leyva and John Orozco attempt to put a disastrous showing in the team final behind them and bring home the first all-around medal for Team USA since Paul Hamm won gold in 2004. They'll be chasing three-time defending World Champion Kohei Uchimura of Japan.
2:30 p.m., NBColympics.com (Live stream — will be shown on NBC in primetime) — Swimming Finals, including the Men's 100-Meter Freestyle and the Women's 4×200-Meter Freestyle
Nathan Adrian is Team USA's lone representative in one of the signature swimming events, and he's a dark horse behind France's Yannick Agnel and Australia's James Magnussen, who will likely duel for the gold. The American women's 4×200 meter freestyle relay squad includes Dana Vollmer, who has already set a world record at these Games in the 100-meter butterfly.
3:00 p.m., NBC — Women's Volleyball, USA vs. China
It's a matchup of the undefeated Group B leaders, as Team USA looks to get the inside track to a favorable draw in the knockout rounds.
3:30 p.m., MSNBC — Women's Fencing, Sabre Final
Did you find yourself wondering who that woman was carrying the flag for the U.S. in the Opening Ceremony? Her name is Mariel Zagunis, and you'll likely see her in the gold medal match. Zagunis, the two-time defending gold medalist, first has to get through the Round of 16, quarterfinals and semifinals — which begin at 9:45, 10:40 and 1:30, respectively. Those will be streaming online at NBColympics.com if MSNBC does not carry them.
6 p.m., NBColympics.com (Live stream — will be shown on NBC in primetime) — Women's Beach Volleyball
Kerri Walsh Jennings and Misty May-Treanor hope it's business as usual as they take on the Schwaiger sisters, Doris and Stefanie, from Austria. The Americans haven't so much as dropped a set in Olympic competition in the three Games they've competed in together.
Check out the full schedule here.
Photo via Twitter/@UpdateOlympics
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