Usain Bolt versus Justin Gatlin at the World Championships – whose side is God on?

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But it seems simplistic to reduce Bolt versus Gatlin to good versus evil.

“It’s good versus evil if you’re anti-Gatlin,” Boldon said. “It shouldn’t be. But Bolt is popular, as he should be, so people don’t want their hero dethroned by someone they don’t really like. I get it.”

And yet why single out Gatlin when Tyson Gay and Asafa Powell, two other veteran sprinters who have served doping suspensions, also won their heats on Saturday and could end up on the podium? And is it wise in this era to characterize Bolt or any larger-than-life sports figure as above all suspicion?

The sport is in a crisis that encompasses much more than Gatlin’s surprising late-career surge — one in which he is running his best times at age 33.

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