If being dull was a medal event, team nordic combined would win the gold. If making viewers want to watch 30 Rock on Hulu was an ice-skating move, team nordic combined would be a quad. This is the worst sport.
Nordic combined joins x-country skiing with ski jumping. First, you get to watch a bunch of people who are pretty good at ski jumping but not as good as, you know, actual ski jumpers. Then you get to watch those same people x-country ski slightly slower than people who just do x-country skiing. Nordic combined is a good sport for people who are scared by excellence.
But it is a tough sell for viewers. NBC was really going to have to pull out the hyperbole and hypnotize people with cliches until the event started and they were hypnotized instead by men in spandex. This should have been easy, since America was in the running to get a gold medal for the first time ever! Instead:
If you're a fan of seeing something that has never ever happened before, you must watch this race.
This is how you sell the most boring Olympic Sport to a viewership that literally has an infinite amount of entertainment options before them? A Filipino man has never stood in front of a camera and sung "Paparazzi" in Spanish while shooting an assault rifle at 50 gallon aquariums full of sharks before. That is something that has never happened before. But somewhere in the world, a video of this is being uploaded right now to YouTube. Given a choice between the shark thing or watching tape-delayed footage of America trying to win their first gold medal in nordic combined, which would you choose?
(Plus, America lost to Austria. Boo.)