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View Full Version : how sampras would have dealt with Nadal


The Gorilla
07-28-2007, 12:48 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMgXa6NvAQc&mode=related&search=

see roger, this is how you hit a high backhand

psamp14
07-28-2007, 12:57 PM
that was great stuff....sampras in his prime was physically stronger than federer, and was able to handle the higher bouncing ball to his backhand from left handers....

but i wouldnt compare muster to nadal in terms of their looping forehands...nadal hits heavier and higher bouncing forehands than muster did

bank5
07-28-2007, 01:01 PM
Those were two great points. I'd love to see Sampras play Nadal.

Couple things to consider about the YouTube video:
-I don't the guy is hitting with the amount of heavy topspin that Nadal hits
-Most of his shots aren't that deep, landing somewhere around the service line
-They're not playing on red clay

Zets147
07-28-2007, 01:15 PM
"Between the ball boy and the netpost Backhand" That is great lol

CyBorg
07-28-2007, 01:20 PM
I doubt Sampras could take a set off Nadal on clay.

That's a selective clip. I can find you dozens of instances of Federer hitting great backhands in spite of high bounces, but many of them are offset by really bad points on his behalf. Pete's backhand was even more inconsistent on bouncy surfaces.

West Coast Ace
07-28-2007, 01:22 PM
Why isn't this on the geenzer board? :-)

How about a separate 'Sampras Jock Sniffer' Board?

z-money
07-28-2007, 01:30 PM
pete wouldnt have played nadal on clay. he either would play the clay tournament or wouldnt have lasted to meet him at the french. On grass he would kill nadal. on hard court he would do the same

iamke55
07-28-2007, 02:09 PM
If Federer has trouble with Nadal, Sampras wouldn't take a set on any court that still exists today.

Warriorroger
07-28-2007, 02:14 PM
Nadal would beat Pete.

JW10S
07-28-2007, 02:28 PM
In the clip Pete's hits no backhands much above his waist let alone above his shoulder. Sampras had more trouble hitting a ball that bounced high to his backhand more than Federer does. Nadal would serve to Pete's backhand 98% of the time so Pete would not hurt him at all there. Pete's only hope would be to serve big and get to a TB and get lucky. On clay Pete would get absolutely killed.

The Gorilla
07-28-2007, 02:32 PM
all the backhands bar one are shoulder high.

JW10S
07-28-2007, 02:33 PM
no, they aren't...

The Gorilla
07-28-2007, 02:35 PM
umm, yes they are

saram
07-28-2007, 02:37 PM
Didn't see Rafa, didn't see any clay.....Saw Muster on hard courts and not all were above shoulder height....

Nadal_Freak
07-28-2007, 02:37 PM
Sampras sucks on bouncy surfaces. Nadal would own Sampras.

The Gorilla
07-28-2007, 02:45 PM
Didn't see Rafa, didn't see any clay.....Saw Muster on hard courts and not all were above shoulder height....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NbVK3eOHejQ

fgzhu88
07-28-2007, 04:10 PM
yeah those lefty forehands were nothing!!! even nadal's forehand on grass would've jumped higher (granted today's wimbledon grass is a disgrace)

Mad iX
07-28-2007, 06:06 PM
Muster was fodder to Sampras on hardcourt. Same goes the other way around on clay. Nadal would have owned Pete on clay any day.

federerfanatic
07-28-2007, 07:04 PM
Nadal would own Sampras on clay and slow-medium hard courts. Sampras would own Nadal on medium-fast hard courts, carpet, and real grass. Although the grass of today Nadal might give Sampras some trouble even there.

The Gorilla
07-28-2007, 07:13 PM
This is how sampras would have dealt with him

http://www.tennisplayer.net/members/tour_strokes/john_yandell/sampras_serve/sampras_serve_part_1/samserveanim.gif

Mick
07-28-2007, 07:29 PM
Federer only has problem against Nadal on the clay courts and he's a much better clay court player than Sampras ever was. So, I don't think Sampras could teach Federer anything.

avmoghe
07-28-2007, 08:41 PM
More of the same highlights = representation of normal skill mentality....

Sampras' backhand is far inferior to Federer. It was nothing but a mediocre shot to keep the rally going or to approach the net. It was not an actual weapon like Federer's backhand is (against most players.. Nadal is an exception of course)

See the Krajicek vs Sampras match in Wimbledon 1996 to see how utterly helpless Sampras could get with the high-kicking Krajicek serve out to the backhand. (I'm not claiming this single match was an accurate description of Sampras' normal backhand ability either... but just pointing to it as an example of how bad it could become)

Either way, the Federer backhand is one of the best in the game. The Sampras backhand was mediocre. Federer has nothing to learn from Sampras on the backhand.. (or any other part of the game aside from the serve and volley, for that matter)

The Gorilla
07-28-2007, 09:11 PM
forehand ?

federerfanatic
07-28-2007, 10:50 PM
I think Federer has a much better return of serve, and much better groundstrokes off both sides then Sampras. Sampras had the better serve, and was better at the net. If Federer is having trouble with Nadal from the baseline, Sampras would have had even more then, so no there is absolutely nothing Sampras could teach him in that regard.

CyBorg
07-29-2007, 09:39 AM
There is one thing Sampras could teach Federer and this is crucial: to slow down between clutch points.

I saw troubling things from Roger in the Nadal matches. When things get tight Roger speeds up, instead of slowing down.

Nadal is smart to slow down, calm himself and generate his own pace - take control of the match rather than relinquish momentum. Pete knew how to do this as well.

Roger doesn't. It's amazing really, because he still dominates in spite of not having this innate sense. When he gets nervous you could see him having panic attacks, even though he's not animated.

laurie
07-31-2007, 03:29 AM
There is one play Sampras did use which Federer doesn't (which I think would work if Federer tried it), that's the American slice as they call it. It's the high to low, he takes the ball high on the backhand, brings it down with slice keeping it low, and come to the net. That was a play Sampras was very good at, he did it a lot against Kuerten and others. Sampras beat players like Corretja on clay. I suppose on the return of serve they call it chip and charge but I'm also talking about open play as well. Corretja was one of those guys who got as much topspin on his shots as players like Nadal do today, he got an incredible amount of action on his shots.
So that's the challenge for players like Sampras and Federer.

I agree that players who don't have as much action on the ball (topspin) are meat and drink for players like Federer and Sampras.

Whether Federer was off form or not, Canas' topspin forehand inside out did pose Federer some issues.

rod99
08-01-2007, 06:51 PM
sampras wouldn't hang out at the baseline against nadal which federer continues to do. he would be attacking the net and not having to hit high backhands. sampras had the greatest serve of all time and the weakest part of nadal's game is his return. on a fast surface nadal would struggle very much to break sampras' serve. he would still be able to win his serve most of the time on clay which would keep the sets close.

Mad iX
08-01-2007, 07:11 PM
sampras wouldn't hang out at the baseline against nadal which federer continues to do. he would be attacking the net and not having to hit high backhands. sampras had the greatest serve of all time and the weakest part of nadal's game is his return. on a fast surface nadal would struggle very much to break sampras' serve. he would still be able to win his serve most of the time on clay which would keep the sets close.

Nadal is one of the best at passing shots, but I definitely agree that Sampras would not be as stubborn as Fed trying to beat Nadal's forehand with his backhand. In the end, it doesn't matter whether Fed or Pete had the better backhand, because Nadal's forehand trumps them both. Why Fed continues to use this 'tactic' I have no clue.

AAAA
08-02-2007, 05:33 AM
Here we go again........

Muster isn't nadal

muster doesn't get the same degree of action on his topspin shots as nadal

muster doesn't hit the same acute angles as nadal

muster has a losing record against sampras whilst Nadal has a winning record against Federer so no mental advantage for Federer against Nadal but Sampras had the mental advantage against muster

Despite all these differences monsoon still thinks it a good example.


N.B.

All these clips on youtube glorifying Sampras are hardly ever against Wayne Ferreria, Stich or Krajicek and also not on clay. In fact I don't remember the last time I saw a Sampras highlights reel against Wayne, Michael, or Richard being posted.

AAAA
08-02-2007, 05:39 AM
There is one thing Sampras could teach Federer and this is crucial: to slow down between clutch points.

I saw troubling things from Roger in the Nadal matches. When things get tight Roger speeds up, instead of slowing down.



If that's right it a good observation. If true then it could mean Federer reckons that by speeding up he might 'hurry' Nadal to his own advantage. however it could be more harmful for him than Nadal to speed up play on key points.

laurie
08-02-2007, 07:03 AM
Here we go again........

Muster isn't nadal

muster doesn't get the same degree of action on his topspin shots as nadal

muster doesn't hit the same acute angles as nadal

muster has a losing record against sampras whilst Nadal has a winning record against Federer so no mental advantage for Federer against Nadal but Sampras had the mental advantage against muster

Despite all these differences monsoon still thinks it a good example.


N.B.

All these clips on youtube glorifying Sampras are hardly ever against Wayne Ferreria, Stich or Krajicek and also not on clay. In fact I don't remember the last time I saw a Sampras highlights reel against Wayne, Michael, or Richard being posted.

I've put Sampras v Krajicek clips on my website and plan to put some on Youtube. Also Krajicek v Henman and Becker v Krajicek.

Don't worry AAAA, it's quite normal for Sampras and other players to have losing records to a few players. The great West Indies cricket team beat everyone but had problems against New Zealand, Real Madrid always has problems against Barcelona. When Liverpool were the top side in England they had problems against Manchester Utd even when Utd were struggling, it's quite normal.

Krajicek was one of my favourite players - I like his sister Micahela too, saw her at Wimbledon and she has promise and a big serve.

AAAA
08-02-2007, 07:11 AM
I've put Sampras v Krajicek clips on my website and plan to put some on Youtube.

Is that clip a match Sampras won or lost?

AAAA
08-02-2007, 07:19 AM
Don't worry AAAA, it's quite normal for Sampras and other players to have losing records to a few players. The great West Indies cricket team beat everyone but had problems against New Zealand, Real Madrid always has problems against Barcelona. When Liverpool were the top side in England they had problems against Manchester Utd even when Utd were struggling, it's quite normal.


No worries 'mate', just wondering if all the you tube clips collectively presented a gilded impression of Sampras or if there were many clips of when he didn't play so well.

Federer's losses to Nadal are plain for all to see, but I don't think you tube has many clips of Sampras's numerous FO 1st, 2nd and 3 rd losses. For fairness Sampras fans should post Sampras's bad matches on you tube as well .

laurie
08-02-2007, 07:21 AM
AAAA, it was the 2000 US Open quarterfinal. I put that on my site last year.

But I've seen on Youtube clips of the 1996 quarterfinal which Sampras lost in straight sets. Krajicek was brilliant in that match on his serve.

I've also put many clips on my site of matches which Sampras lost. In fact, right now on my site, I have 13 clips of the 1998 Cincinatti final which Sampras lost to Rafter, in fact, Sampras blew his top big time at the end. I've also put 16 clips on my site of the 1996 Stuttgart final which Sampras lost to Becker last year which I will bring back later this year. I've also put clips of the 2001 Wimbledon match which Sampras lost to Federer. I enjoy putting good clips on my site whether Sampras won or lost, as long as it was a great match and I have the match in my collection.

I also put clips of my other favourites, Seles, Kuznetsova and Mauresmo and I have many clips of matches where they have lost to other players.

So in my case, it's not some sort of conspiracy.

I can't speak for others.

alizad89
08-02-2007, 07:48 AM
I think as far as wimbledon goes, Sampras would have easy straight set victories over Nadal (much easier than federer), not to mention the Masters RR tournamnets (on carpet). However the tide would turn for Nadal on clay, where I wouldnt be suprised if he bagles Sampras everytime; hard is a grey area, but I would give the advantage of the hard courts to nadal; however it all depends on the sampras serve....

federerfanatic
08-02-2007, 09:50 AM
I do think Sampras would have beaten Nadal easily on the old grass, however I am not sure if he would have an easy time with Nadal on the new grass, which isnt the same grass anymore. I also think Federer would have a very easy time with Nadal on the grass of old as well though.

The Gorilla
08-02-2007, 10:13 AM
I think as far as wimbledon goes, Sampras would have easy straight set victories over Nadal (much easier than federer), not to mention the Masters RR tournamnets (on carpet). However the tide would turn for Nadal on clay, where I wouldnt be suprised if he bagles Sampras everytime; hard is a grey area, but I would give the advantage of the hard courts to nadal; however it all depends on the sampras serve....

you are british?

alizad89
08-02-2007, 10:37 AM
you are british?

No I'm persian, and no not the ones from 300.

Plus watching sampras play is 10 times more interesting than watching nadal and fed go at it any day.

Whew I always wanted to say that....

The Gorilla
08-02-2007, 10:51 AM
No I'm persian, and no not the ones from 300.

Plus watching sampras play is 10 times more interesting than watching nadal and fed go at it any day.

Whew I always wanted to say that....

I just wondere3d because a lot of brits have only seen him play on grass at queens and wimbledon.You really think nadal could beat sampras on hard?Sampras had a big flat forehand, like blake, except far more powerful, and was an alround better player.Nadal has shown himself to be vulnerable to big, flat hitters.

laurie
08-02-2007, 10:57 AM
Giving advantage to Nadal on hardcourts is an interesting concept considering the troubles Nadal has on hardcourts against guys like Gonzalez, Youzny and Blake.

I can imagine what Sampras would do to Nadal on hardcourts, one thing is he would be able to play more rallies before attacking the net because he seemed much more comfortable from the backcourt on the various speeds of hardcourts as opposed to clay (reasons now well documented so I won't bother to go into them).

Tennis_Bum
08-02-2007, 01:51 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMgXa6NvAQc&mode=related&search=

see roger, this is how you hit a high backhand

I hate threads like this. They are so stupid and obviously posted by SAMPRAS worshippers. Nadal would kill Sampras easily. Do you remember a guy name Hewitt? He whipped Sampras easily. Sampras was not as invincible as Fed is now. Fed has his bad days, but Sampras, please, can't be compared with Fed. Fed killed Hewitt.

NadalandFedererfan
08-02-2007, 01:55 PM
Giving advantage to Nadal on hardcourts is an interesting concept considering the troubles Nadal has on hardcourts against guys like Gonzalez, Youzny and Blake.

You are only looking at the negative side, by pointing out how he does vs Gonzalez, Youzhny, and Blake on hard courts. I could point out the very positive side like how extremely well he does vs Federer on hard courts.

Remember he has beaten Federer on 2 of their 3 matches on outdoor hard courts, and the one he lost he was 2 points from a straight set win in a best 3-of-5. So he was that close to being 3-0 vs Federer on outdoor had courts, which is amazing. Also how he dismantled Roddick in the Pacific Life semis this year.

Pointing out only the bad of his showings vs a few much lesser players on hard courts would be like someone pointing out Sampras having such a hard time with Wayne Ferreira and Paul Haarhuis, which would not be fair. Or it would be like pointing out Federer's struggles with Guillermo Canas and Olivier Rochus, as a reflection of his ability.

Also the way he ripped Youzhny apart in the last 3 sets of Wimbledon, and then convincingly beat Berdych in the next round, I would not be surprised if he starts dominating players like that on hard courts. It could be argued, although we will have a better idea in hindsight, that Nadal was in a slump from after Wimbledon last year to the Pacific Life this year. 2 of his 3 losses to Berdych on hard courts, his 1 and only match with Gonzalez not on clay, his 2 losses to Youzhny on hard courts, were all during this period. The way he played vs Berdych and Youzhny at Wimbledon, I think that period looks over, and given that the 2 of them had only 1 of their 5 wins outside that long stretch of Nadal reaching no tournament finals, it could be attributed to his own personal slump more then anything. Blake is the one exception, but I dont think you will see much more of Blake from now on. Gonzalez was just playing tennis of his life in Australia, and I would not be sure he would do well vs Nadal on hard courts if he had played him on other occasions.

AndrewD
08-02-2007, 02:38 PM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tMgXa6NvAQc&mode=related&search=

see roger, this is how you hit a high backhand

Yeah, a high backhand that you hit at waist level.

Sampras would play Nadal the same way he played everyone else. He'd be entirely reliant on his serve. If that wasn't doing the job, he'd lose.

laurie
08-02-2007, 02:38 PM
You are only looking at the negative side, by pointing out how he does vs Gonzalez, Youzhny, and Blake on hard courts. I could point out the very positive side like how extremely well he does vs Federer on hard courts.

Remember he has beaten Federer on 2 of their 3 matches on outdoor hard courts, and the one he lost he was 2 points from a straight set win in a best 3-of-5. So he was that close to being 3-0 vs Federer on outdoor had courts, which is amazing. Also how he dismantled Roddick in the Pacific Life semis this year.

Pointing out only the bad of his showings vs a few much lesser players on hard courts would be like someone pointing out Sampras having such a hard time with Wayne Ferreira and Paul Haarhuis, which would not be fair. Or it would be like pointing out Federer's struggles with Guillermo Canas and Olivier Rochus, as a reflection of his ability.

Also the way he ripped Youzhny apart in the last 3 sets of Wimbledon, and then convincingly beat Berdych in the next round, I would not be surprised if he starts dominating players like that on hard courts. It could be argued, although we will have a better idea in hindsight, that Nadal was in a slump from after Wimbledon last year to the Pacific Life this year. 2 of his 3 losses to Berdych on hard courts, his 1 and only match with Gonzalez not on clay, his 2 losses to Youzhny on hard courts, were all during this period. The way he played vs Berdych and Youzhny at Wimbledon, I think that period looks over, and given that the 2 of them had only 1 of their 5 wins outside that long stretch of Nadal reaching no tournament finals, it could be attributed to his own personal slump more then anything. Blake is the one exception, but I dont think you will see much more of Blake from now on. Gonzalez was just playing tennis of his life in Australia, and I would not be sure he would do well vs Nadal on hard courts if he had played him on other occasions.

You make interesting points. The only I would add in sincerity is the likes of Berdych and blake don't play efficient Tennis, they don't have the killer instinct - they don't take the initiative. Sampras knew the right shots at the right times, when to come in and when to stay back. I think he would have gave Nadal a lot of toruble, but of course Nadal would have posed interesting challenges too.

They always go on about Federer and Sampras but I've been saying for 6 months that a Sampras Nadal rivalry would have been awsome because of the contrast in style of play whilst both been power players.

Jonny S&V
08-02-2007, 02:41 PM
You make interesting points. The only I would add in sincerity is the likes of Berdych and blake don't play efficient Tennis, they don't have the killer instinct - they don't take the initiative. Sampras knew the right shots at the right times, when to come in and when to stay back. I think he would have gave Nadal a lot of toruble, but of course Nadal would have posed interesting challenges too.

They always go on about Federer and Sampras but I've been saying for 6 months that a Sampras Nadal rivalry would have been awsome because of the contrast in style of play whilst both been power players.

Not to mention that Berdych is one of the most streaky players on tour, and he can beat most anyone on any given day (except on clay).

rod99
08-02-2007, 02:46 PM
b/f ANYBODY claims that nadal could beat sampras on a hard court, maybe nadal should at least make a semi-final at either the us open or australian open first. there is no comparison there.

Jonny S&V
08-02-2007, 02:48 PM
b/f ANYBODY claims that nadal could beat sampras on a hard court, maybe nadal should at least make a semi-final at either the us open or australian open first. there is no comparison there.

Good point.

rwn
08-03-2007, 04:20 AM
It's widely known, that Muster couldn't handle serve-and-volley players. He had mediocre passing shots. Nadal OTOH has great passing shots. It's much better to compare Nadal with Bruguera who played with extreme topspin and had excellent passing shots. Sampras has a losing h2h against him.

rwn
08-03-2007, 04:45 AM
There is one thing Sampras could teach Federer and this is crucial: to slow down between clutch points.

I saw troubling things from Roger in the Nadal matches. When things get tight Roger speeds up, instead of slowing down.

Nadal is smart to slow down, calm himself and generate his own pace - take control of the match rather than relinquish momentum. Pete knew how to do this as well.

Roger doesn't. It's amazing really, because he still dominates in spite of not having this innate sense. When he gets nervous you could see him having panic attacks, even though he's not animated.

This is complete nonsense. Sampras constantly panicked against Krajicek. It's so stupid to take one matchup with one player to make a point about Federer's (or Sampras') mental state.

AAAA
08-03-2007, 05:40 AM
It's widely known, that Muster couldn't handle serve-and-volley players. He had mediocre passing shots. Nadal OTOH has great passing shots. It's much better to compare Nadal with Bruguera who played with extreme topspin and had excellent passing shots. Sampras has a losing h2h against him.

Well remembered and some good points. Muster is 0-10 against Edberg, 4 of those 10 losses were on clay and Edberg is not a renowned player on clay. Muster is 2-9 against sampras.

The Gorilla
08-03-2007, 06:28 AM
edberg is a renowned player on clay, he got the fial of the french.

The Gorilla
08-03-2007, 06:29 AM
Yeah, a high backhand that you hit at waist level.

Sampras would play Nadal the same way he played everyone else. He'd be entirely reliant on his serve. If that wasn't doing the job, he'd lose.

evry backhand bar one was shoulder height.

superman1
08-03-2007, 07:24 AM
Sampras would have eaten Nadal up. He's everything that Nadal hates. Big precision server, gets to net as much as he can. I think Sampras would even challenge Nadal on clay, though I doubt he'd ever beat him.

Haasquet
08-03-2007, 01:37 PM
evry backhand bar one was shoulder height.

...and the only one that wasn't happened to be the only one with which he did any damage: the last one.

(well, he finished the second rally with a backhand, but it also wasn't shoulder height...)

AndrewD
08-05-2007, 04:13 AM
evry backhand bar one was shoulder height.

Garbage! They were chest high and in a totally comfortable position for any player with a competent backhand. Muster was only able to get the ball up to, or above, Sampras's shoulders on a few occasions. Each time he got either a weak return of a mishit.

I should know, I was calling service line in that match.

laurie
08-05-2007, 04:28 AM
It shouldn't surprise people that balls high to the backhand give every professional trouble (no matter how good they are)

Even two handers have trouble. Clijsters had incredible problems against Mauresmo on the backhand side, Mauresmo would hit those high topspin backhands and forehands to Clijsters and she couldn't handle it at all. Consequently Mauresmo won their last 5 meetings including those two finals in Antwerp when Mauresmo claimed the diamond racquet.

Sampras was very good at hitting down the lines to chnge the angles. That's one way he could have have tried to deal with Nadal's tospin shots. Also the American slice which he was very good at. Federer doesn't use that shot at all but he should use it because he had success against Nadal n the 2nd set of the French Open final when he sliced it from high and kept it low. Nadal had problems with that play.

FiveO
08-05-2007, 05:09 AM
How it would play out in reality is pure conjecture, of course. But one thing would be a definite is that as sure as Nadal would play his "A" game, Sampras would play his "A" game. Unlike Federer whose "A" game is from the baseline, Sampras' "A" game was getting to the net.

Yes, he was quite formidable from the baseline but his best, at his best was at the net and playing north/south not east/west. In his "funk", 2000 to 2001, after passing Emerson and marriage, fathering his first child, he did look overmatched in those USO finals v. Safin and then Hewitt. But was that his best? Those believing so have incredibly short and or selective memories.

Rest assured that Sampras would be forcing his way in against a player who is not forced to deal with that vs. a player of Sampras's calibre at all today. Federer is obviously that calibre but while many are in a quandry about why Fed doesn't force the issue v. Nadal more often the answer is simple. It's not his "A" game. Coming forward is his "B" game. His mastery of it came later. In his only meeting v. Sampras at Wimbledon, he was forced to take the net away from Sampras and did so as often as possible and actually may have played the best match of his life, yes ever, on grass. Yeah, I know he wasn't at the match in match out dominant peak of his career, but I believe that may be the best match he ever played on grass, which was faster grass even then. No? Think about Safin's performance v. Sampras in that USO final. Has he ever played that well again? Maybe v. a slightly dinged Fed in that AO SF, but I don't believe he played AS well. Safin in 2000, as he himself admitted, was "unconscious" v. Sampras. Jaw droppingly so.

As for the Hewitt comparison, Nadal is simply not the returner Hewitt was at his best. He like Fed is advantaged by the fact that playing conditions and styles have shifted to such a degree that they don't have to return as well as often because no exceptionally talented players come forward like a Sampras in his prime. Combine that with the fact that Nadal is not the type of server that ever bothered Sampras. Stich, Krajicek, Flipper, Ivanisevic, and their like bothered Sampras. Moderate servers, even left handed moderate to fairly good servers did not trouble Sampras in his prime.

Sampras would be coming in. I think those that project Nadal getting to the Sampras bh with abandon are not only ignoring the Sampras serve to Nadal return match-up, but the Nadal serve to Sampras return match up. Nadal cannot go to the high percentage 1st serve approach because Sampras will attack it. Will Sampras give up some short returns that he will be passed off of? Sure. Will Sampras keep coming anyway? Bet the ranch. Can Nadal prevent it? I think that people seeing Fed, the more consistent returner, stay back off returns v. everbody including Nadal, also translate that into no one being able to attack Nadal. I think that is more a product of Fed being caught between the choice of his A v. very formidable B games. Sampras would have no such indecision. He's coming forward. Can Nadal come up with 100 quality passes in a match? Vs. a player of Sampras' ability on transitions and at the net, with being denied any rhythm off the ground by the incessant attack? Look who has troubled him even on the slow grass of today's Wimbledon. Kendrick, Soderling and their like are not Sampras. Period. Fed has the tools but those net attacking tools, as good as they are as compared to today's field, are not as good as Sampras's net attack tools are simply not the inate choice to Fed that they were to Sampras.

On clay Nadal is Nadal. On a fast surface, at a venue Sampras felt was important enough to invest himself fully (another match-up factor)? One thing is assured IMO, on fast surfaces at meaningful (to Sampras) venues, Nadal would be playing to Sampras' rhythm not the reverse as so often Fed seems to be playing in this match-up, and because of that while maintaining a clear vision of Sampras playing his best style.....

laurie
08-05-2007, 05:21 AM
Five0 (Hawai?)

That's a very interesting long post with solid arguments.

But be sure of one thing, someone here is going try to dismantle your arguments point by point and say its rubbish.

It's the Tennis Warehouse way of doing things.

AndrewD
08-05-2007, 05:47 AM
FiveO,

You're assuming that Sampras would still play the same style today, despite conditions having changed dramaticaly since he played on tour. Getting to net was never his natural style - it was developed as a means of winning the US Open and Wimbledon (the percentage play at the time)- so, if he were playing today, his 'A game' would more closely resemble Federer's.

Laurie,

The Tennis Warehouse way of doing things is to salivate over a player - usually Federer, Nadal or Sampras (Graf or Seles, if you prefer the women's game)- attack anyone who doubts that player is the greatest of all time and lavish praise on those posters with a similar viewpoint.

FiveO
08-05-2007, 05:50 AM
Five0 (Hawai?) -ish. (I wish the weather were that good)

That's a very interesting long post with solid arguments.

But be sure of one thing, someone here is going try to dismantle your arguments point by point and say its rubbish.

It's the Tennis Warehouse way of doing things.

Thanks (I think). That's what makes it fun.

Also I recall the prognosticators giving all the reasons Sampras would lose to another tuff bigger serving, Spanish baselining, phenom (but another who tended to back up further behind the baseline when under pressure too) going into the final of the '97 AO.;)

FiveO
08-05-2007, 06:04 AM
FiveO,

You're assuming that Sampras would still play the same style today, despite conditions having changed dramaticaly since he played on tour. Getting to net was never his natural style - it was developed as a means of winning the US Open and Wimbledon (the percentage play at the time)- so, if he were playing today, his 'A game' would more closely resemble Federer's.

Yes and no. From the very early stages of his development under Fischer the groundwork was being laid for Wimbledon. A faster Wimbledon true but serve and volley. Under Gullie it was nurtured and under Annacone featured but it was worked on from the earliest stages of his development. Again, lesser practitioners today, players without the choices of a Sampras, i.e. Kendrick and his like, trouble Nadal now on today's grass. Just put Sampras, with his superior elements from other parts of the court, in that moment in time. Slower yes, Sampras is better, much better, in all elements and he knew his best was moving forward on everything even on red clay. True he did it more later in his career but he knew it and employed it early and more than anyone else other than the Edbergs and Rafters very early in his career and did it more or less depending on the opponent i.e. v. Moya in that '97 AO final in slower conditions. The point is Nadal doesn't show anything to prevent it. Agassi, like others did, but that didn't stop Sampras either, neither earlier in his career nor, even more so, later, when conditions were already beginning to slow.

Tennis_Bum
08-06-2007, 04:43 PM
FiveO,

You're assuming that Sampras would still play the same style today, despite conditions having changed dramaticaly since he played on tour. Getting to net was never his natural style - it was developed as a means of winning the US Open and Wimbledon (the percentage play at the time)- so, if he were playing today, his 'A game' would more closely resemble Federer's.

Laurie,

The Tennis Warehouse way of doing things is to salivate over a player - usually Federer, Nadal or Sampras (Graf or Seles, if you prefer the women's game)- attack anyone who doubts that player is the greatest of all time and lavish praise on those posters with a similar viewpoint.

I agree with Andrew. Macenroe actually said the court at Wimbledon was slower than the past. There is no way Sampras could continually charging the net today as he did in the past.

I forgot to mention that it was a stupid idea to "hope" or "wish" that Muster was a player with similar caliber as Nadal. Pleasssee. Muster was famous for injecting steroids, of course, no confirmation by ATP or ITF. But just ask Chang or Becker, each would tell a good story about Muster.

The Gorilla
08-06-2007, 05:38 PM
chang and becker were just sore losers, becker was fined 50 grand I believe.

NadalandFedererfan
08-06-2007, 09:37 PM
Again, lesser practitioners today, players without the choices of a Sampras, i.e. Kendrick and his like, trouble Nadal now on today's grass.

To bring up 1 match with Kendrick as a valid example of anything is wrong. So because they had 1 very close match at Wimbledon, Kendrick now somehow becomes a player Nadal has "trouble with", and an example that even such a mediocrity (relatively speaking) playing that way obviously gives Nadal trouble on grass due to that style of play. If they ever so happen to play again at Wimbledon, you would get very good odds on Nadal not even losing set. That was a 1 off, the match of a career for Kendrick, a moment to almost certainly never be duplicated again, even in defeat.

Even Sampras has lost sets to some truly strange opponents during his Wimbledon title runs. Karsten Braasch, Jared Palmer, Shuzo Matsuoka, Richey Reneberg, Justin Gimelstob, Jan-Michael Gambill. Would it be fair to draw any wild conclusions based on his one-time meetings with 4 of those 6 guys at Wimbledon? (2 of the 6 he played on another occasion at Wimbledon and beat in comfortable straights, no surprise there, just as Nadal would do if he ever played Kendrick again at Wimbledon).

Federer too, losing a set to Ferrero at this years Wimbledon, true a former #1 and 3-time Slam finalist, but a player far past his prime and on his worst surface by far. Then having a tough 4-setter with Fish the year he won Wimbledon, the only guy to take a set from him in fact was Mardy Fish.

The point is Nadal doesn't show anything to prevent it. Agassi, like others did, but that didn't stop Sampras either, neither earlier in his career nor, even more so, later, when conditions were already beginning to slow.

Are you suggesting Nadal cant bring anything to the court Agassi doesnt? If so I completely disagree.

laurie
08-07-2007, 05:19 AM
I agree with you Tennis Bum. Sampras seems to be quite stubborn in his attitude but the fact remains he hired coaches and if he was playing today he would have to play a lot more from the baseline like he did on hardcourts, because if nothing else, his coaches would be recommending that, he's not a stupid man and he would have to adapt. He seems obsessed with serve and volley to the point of neglecting his other areas of his game like his forehand and movement and keeping in the rallies on the backhand and going for the winners there occassionally. That's a recipe for a good Wimbledon run as the likes of Federer and Venus show, I don't know what's the disgrace in that. Sampras simply doesn't focus on the other good aspects to his game.

Why doesn't he just travel to Wimbledon next year and have a look at the grass himself instead of making statements from far.

FiveO
08-07-2007, 06:26 AM
I agree with Sampras being smart. Being smart I think that he would have noticed Flipper making his only Wimbledon final in 2003. Mirnyi reaching three R16's in the last five years. Henman still reaching the QF there in '04 until truly conceding to not only age but to simlimar coaching input when he began staying back even more, and hasn't got past the 2R there since. Ancic reaching a SF, R16 and QF at Wimbledon the last three years he played it-'04, '05 and '06-playing more serve and volley than any of his peers. And good old Jonas Bjorkman who reached a SF and AVERAGED better than the R16 over the last 5 years at Wimbledon (all played after the age of 31), an average result two rounds better than his first nine attempts there, through the age of 30. Again, I agree, Sampras is smart.

holera
08-10-2007, 11:00 PM
Also the way he ripped Youzhny apart in the last 3 sets of Wimbledon, and then convincingly beat Berdych in the next round, I would not be surprised if he starts dominating players like that on hard courts. It could be argued, although we will have a better idea in hindsight, that Nadal was in a slump from after Wimbledon last year to the Pacific Life this year. 2 of his 3 losses to Berdych on hard courts, his 1 and only match with Gonzalez not on clay, his 2 losses to Youzhny on hard courts, were all during this period. The way he played vs Berdych and Youzhny at Wimbledon, I think that period looks over, and given that the 2 of them had only 1 of their 5 wins outside that long stretch of Nadal reaching no tournament finals, it could be attributed to his own personal slump more then anything. Blake is the one exception, but I dont think you will see much more of Blake from now on. Gonzalez was just playing tennis of his life in Australia, and I would not be sure he would do well vs Nadal on hard courts if he had played him on other occasions.
do you realize that youzhny was crushing nadal before he re-injured his back early in the 3rd?
or that the berdych match was played under extremely windy conditions (which are very bad for an aggressive hitter like berdych)?
plus djokovic was beating him fairly comfortably before his injury in SF.

nadal still has problems against power players. paul-henri mathieu was outhitting nadal and would have won a few days ago if he weren't so weak mentally.

travlerajm
08-10-2007, 11:28 PM
There is something that needs to be taken into account:

Sampras' racquet setup would have been much better equipped than Federer's for dealing with Nadal's massive spins. Why?

Federer's racquet is weighted (and strung) in a way that delivers maximum spin.
It allows Federer to get lots of bite on his shots, so that he can hit massive spin without having to take a vicious uppercut like Borg or Roddick. The disadvantage of a max-spin setup is that the rebound angle is more dependent on the rpm of the incoming shot from your opponent. So Nadal's excessive spin tends to grab Federer's strings well, and the rebound angle is higher or lower than expected, depending on how well Fed has judged the spin rate of Nadal's shot. This is why Nadal's forehand is so bothersome to most modern players, including Federer - so players tend to spray balls when dealing with the high rpm. Almost all modern players use setups that are highly polarized and strung loosely with poly - good for hitting massive spin, but terrible for dealing with Nadal's spin.

Sampras' frame, in contrast, is strung at extremely high tension, and has extremely high twistweight. This setup is excellent for volleys because it minimizes the dependence of the rebound angle on the spin rate of the incoming shot. This makes it easy to accurately volley even the heaviest of passing shots.

The modern player who has a racquet strung most similarly to Sampras is James Blake. Not coincidently, Blake has never had trouble dealing with Nadal's shots, as his racquet is better designed for accurately dealing with Nadal's tremendous rpm. Sampras' racquet would have been even better equipped than Blake's for dealing with Nadal's spin rate, because his twistweight is higher and his tension is higher.

holera
08-10-2007, 11:33 PM
it's hard to say how successful each would have been vs each other under today's conditions because the courts are slower and the racquets are better.
sampras would get destroyed on clay, but overall would win more often than not i think.
he is the type of player who troubles nadal. he hit a big flat FH,and of course the huge serve. nadal would not get aced very often, but sampras would be coming to net to put it away with a volley. although, under today's conditions, serve and volley imo is much, much less effective.

nadal would of course hit to sampras' BH the whole match. nadal is better at passing shots than maybe anyone sampras faced. also probably as fast and mentally tough as anyone.

superman1
08-11-2007, 02:13 AM
nadal is better at passing shots than maybe anyone sampras faced. also probably as fast and mentally tough as anyone.

Nadal can hit great passing shots on the rare occasion that the baseliner he is facing hesitantly ventures to the net and pokes at the volley. Nadal has NEVER hit a passing shot against a net player as good as Sampras, therefore he has yet to prove himself as anywhere near the greatest passer of all time.

laurie
08-11-2007, 02:38 AM
Nadal can hit great passing shots on the rare occasion that the baseliner he is facing hesitantly ventures to the net and pokes at the volley. Nadal has NEVER hit a passing shot against a net player as good as Sampras, therefore he has yet to prove himself as anywhere near the greatest passer of all time.

That's true, when you have to hit passing shots over and over in a match, then it starts to wear you down unless everything goes right for 2 to 3 hrs. Agassi found this on many occassions. Let's remember Mahut beat Nadal at Queens and he comes in all the time.

Safin did for the Sampras with that type of one off performance in the 2000 US Open final and yet just 12 months later was done in straight sets in the semi. I understand the difference was in 2001 Sampras really turned up the heat on his second serve to put Safin under even more pressure of having to come up with the goods quick. That was always one good thing about Sampras, he learned his lessons well.

drpepper4590
08-17-2007, 03:35 PM
and nadal would have had a bunch of fun playing sampras on real grass...you know the stuff that's fast and keeps the ball low