by Jonathan Gault
May 16, 2016
BOSTON — This afternoon, after a press event with Mayor Marty Walsh promoting the inaugural adidas Boost Boston Games that will be held on Boston Common on June 18 – Meet Director Mark Wetmore Explains Why The adidas Grand Prix Moved from New York to Boston And Became The US’s 1st-Ever Street Meet – I had a chance to talk to 2000 Olympic 100m champion Maurice Greene about sprinting in the year 2016.
Without further ado …
Maurice Greene’s Thoughts on the U.S. Relay Situation, Usain Bolt and Trayvon Bromell
Greene was brought in by adidas to promote the meet, and I had the opportunity to speak to him for almost seven minutes. Greene, the 2000 Olympic champion at 100 meters and a four-time individual world champion, said that he would have loved to have competed in a street meet, which he thinks will bring “new energy” to the sport, during his career but never had the opportunity.
Greene was also part of the U.S.’s gold-medal-winning 4 x 100 relay team at 2000 Olympics, so naturally I had to ask him about the U.S.’s recent struggles in that event. As soon as I mentioned the word relay, Greene saw where I was going and began to smile.
“Oh yeah, I know how I would fix it but I would have to be the coach,” Greene said. “But I’m not the coach. That’s the coach’s problem. He has to understand the tools he has and he has to go out there and try to get them together. The thing is, you have to get four people to work as one. That’s what you have to do.
“I’m not going to say it’s the person giving the information. I think you’ve got to let the athletes be athletes themselves and not try to control them as much.”
I asked Greene whether he thought Dennis Mitchell should remain in his role as U.S. relay coach.
“That’s not up to me,” he said with a chuckle, dodging the question.
As far as the individual event at this summer’s Olympics are concerned, Greene expects more dominance from Usain Bolt.
“I think the best chance for him to be beat was last year. And I think he cut it close last year and he knows that so this year he’s working extremely hard and I think he wants to make sure it’s not going to be a question if he can be beat this time. He wants to make it known that, ‘You know what, I am the best out here.'”
Greene also praised Trayvon Bromell, who at 20 years old has already earned bronze in the 100 at Worlds and gold in the 60 at World Indoors and believes that the key for Bromell to keep improving is for him to remain confident in his vast abilities.
“When you have a young, talented athlete with that much confidence, the sky is the limit for him,” Greene said.