These words were relayed to Johnson as he lay on a rubbing table in his hotel room on Sunday night. He nodded and his eyes widened. "That is exactly what Carl Lewis said about me in 1992 when I got lane 8 at the Olympic trials—that I would break," he said. "I won that race. Break in close races? Tell Maurice to look at the '92 trials, or the '97 400-meter final at the world championships, when I was hurt and five meters down with 100 meters to go and won the race on experience and heart. He won't feel so good about himself then."
Johnson dropped his chin off the edge of the table as a therapist rubbed oil into his lower legs. This weekend the trials' rules change. For two men in one race, just making the team will not be enough.