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View Full Version : Annacone - Sampras could make Wimbledon 2nd week


laurie
02-20-2007, 05:50 AM
Interesting comments by Paul

http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601077&sid=aT5ODJ.5GOcM&refer=intsports

Thoughts?

mdhubert
02-20-2007, 06:00 AM
If Nadal can reach the finals, I see Pete making the 2nd week.
I saw him against Roddick in WTT, he was pretty convincing, very relaxed. I know it's an exhibition but still pretty good game (esp. the serve).

Zaragoza
02-20-2007, 07:02 AM
If Nadal can reach the finals, I see Pete making the 2nd week.
I saw him against Roddick in WTT, he was pretty convincing, very relaxed. I know it's an exhibition but still pretty good game (esp. the serve).

Yes, and if Federer reached the final at the FO I can see Kuerten making the same this year. Wake up. Sampras is a legend and WAS an awesome player, his time passed and he retired in the right moment.
I canīt understand all these comments about Sampras making a comeback, he deserves more respect. He won Wimbledon 7 times, whatīs the sense of talking about him making the 2nd week?

prince
02-20-2007, 07:21 AM
laurie ,

again - sampras is a great player and one of the best but .........

Morrissey
02-20-2007, 07:26 AM
Yes, and if Federer reached the final at the FO I can see Kuerten making the same this year. Wake up. Sampras is a legend and WAS an awesome player, his time passed and he retired in the right moment.
I canīt understand all these comments about Sampras making a comeback, he deserves more respect. He won Wimbledon 7 times, whatīs the sense of talking about him making the 2nd week?

I agree. Didnīt Sampras lose in the 2nd round in his last Wimbledon against an unknown Swiss guy? (Bastl?) With Samprasīserve alone he can consistently make it at least to the QF of Wimbledon. But his net rushing abilities would slow down and would have to deal with better returns than in the past. S & V is dying for a reason, unless you serve like Karlovic or Pete you canīt succeed with that strategy on a regular basis.

ATXtennisaddict
02-20-2007, 07:28 AM
I think he definitely has a chance. S&V doesn't take too much stamina since points are pretty quick. Once he gets his serve going, he definitely can make the 2nd week.

laurie
02-20-2007, 07:36 AM
Please note, this is not my personal view. It was an article I saw and thought it would be interesting to post.

My personal thought is that this is all silly talk. As a Sampras fan I wouldn't even want him to think of making a comeback. And, thankfully, I think Sampras has no intention of a comeback anyway. The Seniors is fine and in the future we might well see him at the Royal Albert Hall or an exhibition at Queens.

I still maintain, Wimbledon may be Sampras' favourite tournament but hardcourts is his best surface as a player. Too many people focus on grass when they talk about Sampras.

Bjorn99
02-20-2007, 07:56 AM
This is NOT BOXING. Who cares if the man comes back and loses in the FIRST round? I don't. If he loves the game and realizes that it is more enjoyable than getting ragged by his wife about not cleaning up his toolshed and taking out the garbage, then LET the man play.

He doesn't risk any physical injury of any major consequence. I think it would be great to see.

He won a US Open fairly recently. Even though the way it opened up for him at every turn was sort of magical.

The problem for Pete IS simple. They have slowed the grass courts down. And they have made the balls slower. THAT IS THE BIGGEST problem he faces. It is like a quick clay now, not good for Pete at all. Nor anyone like him.

caulcano
02-20-2007, 08:28 AM
Let me first say I would like to see SAMP, a true GREAT, make a comeback but it ain't gonna happen.

This is NOT BOXING. Who cares if the man comes back and loses in the FIRST round? I don't. If he loves the game and realizes that it is more enjoyable than getting ragged by his wife about not cleaning up his toolshed and taking out the garbage, then LET the man play.


I can't think of anyone who's was retired & over 30, who returned to a have a successful career. Besides he's playing the seniors tour now, so he is going to play in the near future.

He doesn't risk any physical injury of any major consequence. I think it would be great to see.


It could be a mental thing in the future knowing he should have stayed retired, instead of trying to compete & losing badly.

He won a US Open fairly recently. Even though the way it opened up for him at every turn was sort of magical.


That was 5 yrs ago, that's a long time in any physical sport. To come back at the same level as 5yrs ago would be really hard. And the chances of a magical run would be slim, at best.

The problem for Pete IS simple. They have slowed the grass courts down. And they have made the balls slower. THAT IS THE BIGGEST problem he faces. It is like a quick clay now, not good for Pete at all. Nor anyone like him.

True. Though not the BIGGEST.

blubber
02-20-2007, 08:40 AM
I agree with Bjorn. I hate all this talk in sports about legacies and how it prevents some athletes from continuing to play b/c they don't want to tarnish their image. Would you think Pete wasn't great if he played at this year's Wimbledon and got smoked in the first round by some unknown? People understand that he is older and a bit past his prime, they wouldn't think differently of what he accomplished no matter how badly he played. Who cares what the annoying media will say or write. Why have any regrets, play as much high level tennis as you can while you've still got it. Go for as many championships as possible, try and derail the Fed express as he chugs along towards exclipsing your records. Who cares about image or legacy, they're just things for the media to bloviate on.

capriatifanatic
02-20-2007, 08:43 AM
While I strongly dispute people who talk about horrable the standard of the mens game is today overall-particularly on various hard courts, I would agree on grass the standard of the mens is at a very low point. How on earth could you explain Nadal standing 10 feet behind the baseline on grass, with exagerrated backswings that shouldnt work on grass, make the final. Yeah people will point out that he gave Federer a good match, but that is only because of the huge mental block Federer had with Nadal at that point, without that mental block Federer would have lost no more then 6 games in a straight sets win.

So if 10-feet-behind-the-baseline Nadal can reach a Wimbledon final, then it is possable for even a 36 year old Sampras who has not played competitive pro tennis since he was 31 to make the 4th round or better at Wimbledon given some hard training for even a couple months going into it. I could see it. Of course assuming he didnt play Federer or a couple of others early.


I still maintain, Wimbledon may be Sampras' favourite tournament but hardcourts is his best surface as a player. Too many people focus on grass when they talk about Sampras.

Obviously Pete was an incredable hard court player, but his record at Wimbledon is far more dominant then either the U.S Open or Australian Open. He has won the U.S Open 5 times, Australian Open 2 times, and Wimbledon 7 times, so his titles at Wimbledon are double his average of 3.5 between the other two. So it doesnt surprise me people would focus on grass first when talking about Sampras, and regard that is his most outstanding surface, and not hard courts. His record suggests that.

drakulie
02-20-2007, 09:14 AM
He needs to work on his backhand.

Grimjack
02-20-2007, 09:52 AM
If Nadal can reach the finals, I see Pete making the 2nd week.

This is completely illogical. When has Pete EVER been a force to be reckoned with on courts where a claycourt specialist was a factor? Wimbledon is a slowcourt now. It slowed just after the turn of the century, and even then, while Pete was still in his athletic prime, he became an instant non-contender the day it happened. Now, he's older, and Wimbledon is even slower.

All this does is cement another "insider" as clueless about the changes that have happened within his own sport. Annacone is clearly still living in the 90's. Not surprising. Lots of people have trouble letting go. Pete would have no more success at the modern day Wimbledon than he would at the modern day French. If you wanted to make a "contender" argument for him, it would have to be at the USO or nowhere.

laurie
02-20-2007, 11:53 AM
I understand what you mean Capriatifanatic but I don't just mean Wimbledon. Sampras has around 36 hardcourt titles and 9 grass titles. So he has 4 times more hardcourt titles than grass titles.

They only play on grass for one month out of 11 each year.
And in fact, I always enjoyed watching Sampras much more on hardcourts than grass. But in the 1990s I prefered watching hardcourt Tennis anyway. Of course now grass plays different.

Nick Irons
02-20-2007, 12:00 PM
I think Sampras could get as high a 4th Round appearance at Wimby but only with serious training and dedication.

Chadwixx
02-20-2007, 12:21 PM
"Thoughts?"

Its called graveytraining. Something pete and his cronies have been doing the past couple years.

deucecourt
02-20-2007, 12:50 PM
Sampras has nothing to prove. He is still the alltime slams leader(maybe for another 1.5 years or so) But it would be good for tennis if he made a return ........And lost straight sets to fed.

Nick Irons
02-20-2007, 01:14 PM
The man is 35 years old and considered possibly the greatest male tennis player of all time. I can kind of remember a certain 39 year old advancing into the Semi's of the U.S. Open, not too mention a certain veteran winning Los Angeles and making it to the Finals of the U.S. OPEN at the ripe old age of 35.

Ivan Lendl won tokyo at 33
Even Vince Spadea won Scottsdale at 30 (This dude is still beating Top Players and getting into the Semis and Quarters of tourneys at 33)
Agassi was the oldest world #1 male tennis player (33 years and 13 days).

Is it unfathonable for a player of Pete's legend and stature to make it into the 2nd Round of the very tourney he owns ?

illkhiboy
02-20-2007, 01:40 PM
This is completely illogical. When has Pete EVER been a force to be reckoned with on courts where a claycourt specialist was a factor? Wimbledon is a slowcourt now. It slowed just after the turn of the century, and even then, while Pete was still in his athletic prime, he became an instant non-contender the day it happened. Now, he's older, and Wimbledon is even slower.



Wimbledon in 2006 was slower than Wimbledon in 2002. And Wimbledon 2001 was quicker than 2002 IMO. Sampras wasnt irrelevant the year he lost to Federer, he just had a rough draw. If Sampras was irrelevant, how come Goran won the event? The court was fast enough for Goran to do damage. And it's not like Sampras had a bad record on slow surfaces, he did fine at the Aussie Open, Indian Wells and Key Biscayne.

edberg505
02-20-2007, 02:02 PM
:D I can't think of anyone who's was retired & over 30, who returned to a have a successful career. Besides he's playing the seniors tour now, so he is going to play in the near future.

Hey, if George Foreman can do it, why can't Pete?;)

Bjorn99
02-20-2007, 03:43 PM
35 is not OLD. He was overweight, but he has lost that now. So, my opinion is, IT would be amazing to watch him play.

But let me tell ya. If he plays the Seniors and guys like Goran are playing like they are. Well, the tennis Seniors COULD become bigger than MENS tennis. Cause tennis is more popular with people from 40 and up.

I enjoyed watching the guy, lets face it. Federer and HIS coach who died, must have taken TONS from Sampras. Who took a bit from Lendl, who took a bit from Borg. Watching Sampras is like seeing a bit part of the chain.

Another guy I would love to watch again would be Becker. I hope he decides to come out and play.

Remember, Tiger Woods is 31. Only four years younger than Pete. Pete is not OLD. Gordie Howe was old at 53, Chris Chelios is old at 44. 35 is not old.

NamRanger
02-20-2007, 06:14 PM
Pete only has a chance at the U.S. Open and on indoor carpet. Otherwise, he stands no chance on modern day grass, especially since it's so much slower then before. Even then, I highly doubt it.

TheNatural
02-20-2007, 06:26 PM
I think Sampras would do a lot better than Gonzales did versus Fed at the AO final. Gonzo choked on set points, then puffed himself out running side to side. Sampras would definately attack net on Feds serve and put a lot more pressure on him. He wouldnt just stand back and give Fed all the time in the world to dictate , like all the 1 dimensional basleine bashers do now.

35ft6
02-20-2007, 06:31 PM
I think Sampras would do a lot better than Gonzales did versus Fed at the AO final. You mean the Pete Sampras that steps off a time machine that just arrived from 1998? Or Pete Sampras of today?

Gonzalez played a good match. Sure, he could have seized some opportunities, but it's tough converting chances against the greats, in fact, that's why they're great, because they don't break under pressure. Just ask the guys who lost to Pete at his peak.

The tennis guy
02-20-2007, 07:55 PM
I think Sampras would do a lot better than Gonzales did versus Fed at the AO final. Gonzo choked on set points, then puffed himself out running side to side. Sampras would definately attack net on Feds serve and put a lot more pressure on him. He wouldnt just stand back and give Fed all the time in the world to dictate , like all the 1 dimensional basleine bashers do now.

This is the illogical point from some poster: Sampras would attack net on Fed's serve. Yes, go ahead, on a medium speed high bounce court, chip and charge on Federer's serve will get you passed left and right. That's today's game, wake up. It works if you do it occassionally; constantly, it doesn't work in today's game.

Sampras was not able to attack Federer's serve at Wimbeldon 2001, why can he do it 6 years later? Use your brain a little bit.

TheNatural
02-20-2007, 08:09 PM
Well Gonzo lost the first set points he had at 40-15 on his own errors. Then in the second set towards the end of the set when scores were about 4-4 , he hit about 4 errors on one game and lost the game. Federer hit 2 or 3 of his own errors that game also, then strung together 1 or 2 points to break, but Gonzo was real loose and error prone that game. The old or current Sampras, any one would have done better.

You mean the Pete Sampras that steps off a time machine that just arrived from 1998? Or Pete Sampras of today?

Gonzalez played a good match. Sure, he could have seized some opportunities, but it's tough converting chances against the greats, in fact, that's why they're great, because they don't break under pressure. Just ask the guys who lost to Pete at his peak.

Camilio Pascual
02-21-2007, 06:14 AM
Who cares if the man comes back and loses in the FIRST round?

Well, I can think of a truly great player who tried to become bjorn again at age 35 with a comeback. He made a disgrace of himself at Monte Carlo with his poor effort and apparent lack of preparation. As a fan of this player, I felt embarrassed for him and wish it had never happened. Pete will spare himself this embarrassment.

caulcano
02-21-2007, 06:53 AM
Remember, Tiger Woods is 31. Only four years younger than Pete. Pete is not OLD. Gordie Howe was old at 53, Chris Chelios is old at 44. 35 is not old.

Pete at 35 IS old for a tennis player.

Golf is an entirely different sport.

fastdunn
02-21-2007, 08:31 AM
I don't think Sampras will ever come back to Wimbledon unless
he thinks he can win the whole thing.

laurie
02-21-2007, 12:07 PM
Camilio, great to see you back.

BeckerFan
02-21-2007, 12:22 PM
I don't think Sampras will ever come back to Wimbledon unless
he thinks he can win the whole thing.

Agreed. That is simply the way Sampras is. Which is something of a shame, b/c personally I miss his game. Even an over-the-hill Pete would be more entertaining to watch than most of today's one-dimensional baseliners.

The Gorilla
02-21-2007, 12:40 PM
Well, I can think of a truly great player who tried to become bjorn again at age 35 with a comeback. He made a disgrace of himself at Monte Carlo with his poor effort and apparent lack of preparation. As a fan of this player, I felt embarrassed for him and wish it had never happened. Pete will spare himself this embarrassment.


I think that had more to do with his racquet.

ne1410is
02-21-2007, 12:59 PM
He'd have to get into great physical shape but even then, his redline is lowered because he's gettin up there. Not to mention that I always thought he was kinda delicate physically. But hey, he knows what to do to win on grass. Just don't know if he's quick enough to execute.

BeckerFan
02-21-2007, 01:04 PM
Perhaps he'll wait to see if Federer gets injured before Wimbledon one of these years, then apply for a last-minute wildcard. I don't think that sort of opportunism would be out the question for Sampras.

jktennis59
02-21-2007, 01:20 PM
Sampras was (is) my idol. At the top of his game he could be a real threat to Federer. But we have to be reallistic. 35 y/o means at least one or two steps slower than a younger player. His last US Open was something mythical, but that was almost 5 years ago.
There's nothing that I would like more than see Pistol Pete back, but right now he is just a legend of tennis.

Mick
02-21-2007, 01:27 PM
If Sampras entered Wimbledon this year, he would be unseeded and there's a good a chance that an unseeded player would play Roger Federer or the other top ranked players in the first round. For this reason, in my view, it would be tough for him to make it to the 2nd round, let alone the 2nd week.

alwaysatnet
02-21-2007, 02:18 PM
I don't think Pete would ever come back because there is no reason for him to and he doesn't do anything half way,his WTT appearances notwithstanding. Having said that if he wanted to play again at Wimbledon there is no reason to believe he couldn't make it into the second week. He still has one of the world's most dangerous serves(and volleys) and he would be fresh, not having to endure the rigors of the tour grind. Everything would depend on his draw. It is not far fetched at all to imagine him pulling something like that off. But will it happen? Almost certainly not. Not in a million years.

tricky
02-21-2007, 02:27 PM
Truth is, it's questionable whether Sampras could mantain his current performance levels through a proper tourney of "best of 5" matches, let alone Wimbledon. If the surface is as slow as last year, there's just no way he can S&V through the tourney, and he would be facing the higher ranked players early as a unseeded player.

drakulie
02-21-2007, 03:30 PM
He still has one of the world's most dangerous serves(and volleys) and he would be fresh, not having to endure the rigors of the tour grind.

He hasn't played an ATP match in over 5 years, so I wouldn't say he "still has one of the world's most dangerous serves (and volleys)".

MonkeyPox
02-22-2007, 01:43 PM
Pete wouldn't be seeded meaning he could get anyone. I'd be shocked if he could win a match. It's not the French, but lots and lots of Wimbledon matches are marathon affairs. If he got involved in one of those he probably couldn't even finish it.

Camilio Pascual
03-06-2007, 06:48 AM
Camilio, great to see you back.

Laurie, sorry for the belated "Hey, back atcha!" Thanks.

Gorilla has nailed it, the dated racquet stuck out like a sore thumb and made many wonder how serious his comeback effort was. Still, the greatest male claycourter ever and one of the half dozen or less reasonable choices for Open Era GOAT, with my apologies to Laver and Rosewall.

TheNatural
03-06-2007, 09:52 AM
I think he could do it no problem, he has a lot more skill than everyone out there. The only issue would be stamina and fitness, his legs might cramp or something.

People comment about Sampras's backhand, if you watch the Gonzo fed final at the AO, the standard wasnt anything that would worry Sampras too much, neither had lethal backhands either. After seeing it again, I was surprised to see so many errors and balls landing short. (I just watched it agian)I think its easier for guys with efficient games like Sampras to play at 35 , becasue he has a simple game and basic technique and classical grips.

larlarbd
03-06-2007, 10:55 AM
Please note, this is not my personal view. It was an article I saw and thought it would be interesting to post.

My personal thought is that this is all silly talk. As a Sampras fan I wouldn't even want him to think of making a comeback. And, thankfully, I think Sampras has no intention of a comeback anyway. The Seniors is fine and in the future we might well see him at the Royal Albert Hall or an exhibition at Queens.

I still maintain, Wimbledon may be Sampras' favourite tournament but hardcourts is his best surface as a player. Too many people focus on grass when they talk about Sampras.

Thanks for the Update & link - the article was indeed interesting . Thank You for posting that.

thor's hammer
03-06-2007, 12:21 PM
If I remember correctly Federer said Borg called him to say thanks after Fed beat Sampras in the 2001 Wimbledon, as that preserved Borg's record of 5 straight Wimbledon singles championships.

Now if Pete came back and beat Federer in this year's Wimbledon that would block Fed getting 5 straight. Imagine that in the final, with Borg presenting the trophy!

How about that for a dream scenario, hmm? ;-)