While Russia and Great Britain are currently deciding who will represent them in Rio, I think it would be nice to compare two teams with outside chances of sneaking up into the team podium. Brazil has come a long way since Worlds last year, with a dominating performance at the Test Event to secure their spot in Rio. Japan was applauded for their fifth place finish last year, even counting a meltdown score from Mai Murakami on beam and have selected what seems to be a stronger team than last for the Olympics.
Japan comes out on top on three out of the four events. Flavia Saraiva’s excellent beam routine helps put Brazil on top on that event, but their historically best event floor is now tied for the weakest. Japan’s best two events from their fifth place finish in Beijing are now their worst two, while their worst at those games is now their best. They’ve put so much focus on fixing that weakness that they overlooked what used to be their strengths.
Edit as of July 13
Brazil showed some upgrades at a competition in Netherlands. I updated their difficulty scores to see what they would improve. They go up a full point, thanks to upgrades from Barbosa and Andrade on bars and Hypolito on beam.