The team was stuck watching the opening performance from their hotel rooms. So, Rapinoe decided to have a little fun and recreate the festivities in the hallway. She even pretended to bear the flag, which, in the real ceremony, was carried by her fiancée Sue Bird.
The women even tried to recreate the pomp of the actual opening ceremony by playing the Olympic theme. Though, some of the luster was lost since it was being played on a phone.
Bird, a member of the U.S. Women’s Basketball Team, told Fox News that the opening ceremonies are one of the few times during the games that athletes can let loose and have fun. And Rapinoe and Dahlkemper definitely seemed to be having fun.
“I want to have fun. You know that’s what the Olympics are about,” Bird said. “Yes, there are times to be serious and obviously there are times to focus on your mission and why you’ve come here. But I think Opening ceremonies is really the one time you let loose and enjoy it.”
Bird is only the second female basketball player to carry the U.S. flag into the Olympics during the athlete’s parade. Her coach, Dawn Staley, was the first in 2004.
Megan Rapinoe: We’re in ‘Do or Die Mode’
The U.S. Women’s Soccer Team was a heavy favorite heading into the 2021 Tokyo Games. But after Sweden destroyed the team 3-0, and exposed some of their weaknesses, Megan Rapinoe said the team was a little shaken at first.
“It’s frustrating, and it’s frustrating that it’s Sweden,” she told ESPN. “They found a lot of space on us. I don’t even know how many goals we have given up this whole year. I don’t remember the last time we gave up a goal. So to give up three is not great.”
Rapinoe added that the team was in a “do or die mode” heading into tonight’s game against New Zealand. That’s partially true because if they lose they’ll be out of the games, which would be one of the biggest upsets in recent memory.
The loss to Sweden broke a 44-game winning streak for the team. But forward Christen Press said the team isn’t rattled or worried about elimination. The team has come back before.
“I think it was actually really good to have this match,” she told ESPN. “In 2008, we lost our first match and the team won gold. So I think now we’re seeing this as a learning opportunity. And the message is already ‘Heads up, put it behind us, next game.’ There’s no time in a tournament like this to dwell.”