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USA gymnasts Lee, Chiles, McCallum dedicate silver to Biles

USA gymnasts Lee, Chiles, McCallum dedicate silver to Biles
Posted at 9:54 PM, Jul 27, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-28 00:27:53-04

There were nerves, anxiety, and even a little panic en route to the United States women's gymnastics team's silver medal, but the team is ultimately left with an overwhelming sense of pride in rallying behind Simone Biles on Tuesday.

Biles, the world's predominant gymnast, withdrew from the team event on Tuesday after a rare mistake in order to "focus on my mental health and not jeopardize my well-being."

Teammates Grace McCallum, Jordan Chiles, and Suni Lee took hold of the day to win silver behind the athletes representing the Russian Olympic Committee.

"I definitely had a little panic attack for a second just because that's so out of (Biles') normal," McCallum told NBC's Maria Taylor on Tuesday while joining Chiles and Lee to discuss the silver medal. "We were all a little stressed after that and just hoping she was okay." 

Lee added, "It's something you don't see from Simone, so we were all kinda like, 'Whoa'."

The gymnasts were asked by Taylor about the pressure of representing their nation, one that regularly thrives on the Olympic stage.

"Being on Team USA puts so much pressure on you because you're expected to win," Lee said. "Especially with Simone, people forget that she's human and anything can happen. We don't owe anyone anything. ... We're the ones who had to go through all of this so if anything we owed it to ourselves and that's what we did. ... We kinda dedicated it to (Simone) because everybody was depending on Simone and that's unfair to her because we are a whole team."

Team USA might've been rocked but they stayed on their feet, so to speak, to win silver.

The key word there is the verb: Win.

"We still got a medal for the United States of America," Chiles said. "In our minds, this silver medal is a gold medal. We didn't just get silver, we won silver. We did this to show that no matter who you are, what's going through your mind, the circumstances, if you put people who know what they're doing out onto that floor, then they can succeed."

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