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View Full Version : I hate to say it, but Roddick is winning me over...


iamamultitasker
11-18-2004, 06:13 PM
I have been impressed with how Roddick is learning to carry himself on the court and also with the way he is evolving his game. I really like it when he applauds his opponent's incredible shot and also his sense of humor. I have a feeling as he gets older he is going to age well, like a bottle of good cabernet.

On the game front, I notice and like his improved net game. He use to flail at his volleys and hack them short if even over the net. Now I am seeing some deep penetration on them. If he keeps making progress in this area, he will have a shot at taking Federer.

At one time I always rooted against Roddick and now I find myself an agnostic. Maybe I'll be a big fan some day. Who knows?

Noelle
11-18-2004, 07:03 PM
Welcome to the dark side. ;) Those are actually the things that made me a Roddick fan last year.

Chopin
11-18-2004, 07:43 PM
Yes well it was only a matter of time before people got over their "Roddick Phobias"

sliceroni
11-18-2004, 07:57 PM
I hate to be the teeth on the jugular, but I'm TIRED of people mentioning that if Roddick improved his volleys he can take Federer. IMO, from what I've seen this year it's going to take a lot more than that. Andy must not only improve his volleys, but his movement, anticipation, backhand, mental toughness/ adaptation/strategy during a match. Even his serve, he doesn't ace Federer much and needs to mix it up more against Fed because as we seen he'll return those 140mph+ bombs all day long.

Vlad
11-18-2004, 08:11 PM
Roddick looked like a machine out there today. When he needed an ace, he gets it. He played two brilliant tiebreaks and that was the difference.
So, at least as far as mental toughness goes he has it all over him...

Jayzzz
11-18-2004, 11:26 PM
Mark my words : He will eventually surpass Fed. Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent. Case in point : Today's match vs. Moya. Roddick is hungry for that #1 spot and is more willing to risk more.

That said, as much as I love Coria, he will get manhandled by Roddick tomorrow. I predict 6-1 6-2. Here we have the biggest serve on the tour vs. the weakest serve on tour. Roddick serves in the high 130s, low 140s, while Coria can barely break 100mph, and averages 85mph or so FIRST serves.

JSummers
11-18-2004, 11:50 PM
Eventually so, as Roddick is 1 year younger, may be in roughly 10 years and he still hangs around will surpass Federer when he retires.

yee
11-19-2004, 01:31 AM
Mark my words : He will eventually surpass Fed. Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent.

Talking about the player who had won most titles, 3 slams, 72w6L, 22 consecutive wins over top 10 players, 12-0 in final as lazy and inconsistent. I don't even know where to start telling you how bias you are.

sliceroni
11-19-2004, 02:00 AM
Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent.

:lol: lol. A little hypocritical there don't ya think? Fed hit more UFE but Moya played a great second set, running around and crushing that forehand, high percentage of 1st serves in too. Fed still got to balls which no doubt would be winners against anybody else so I wouldn't call him lazy. He just said to himself "enough of this" and made his adjustments, sneaking in a little bit more, using angles, and he produces some nasty spin w/ that forehand pushing Moya back. Hope it will be a Fed/Henman final, at least Henman will give Fed a match (hopefully) because he absolutely owns Roddick.

pound cat
11-19-2004, 03:33 AM
" I have a feeling as he gets older he is going to age well, like a bottle of good cabernet" Nice compliment to to the wine, but comparing Andy to cabernet may be a bit of a stretch. LOL

Exci
11-19-2004, 03:55 AM
Mark my words : He will eventually surpass Fed. Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent. Case in point : Today's match vs. Moya. Roddick is hungry for that #1 spot and is more willing to risk more.


You base that on one point, but that doesn't make Federer consistently lazy! Federer might appear inconsistent yes, but why would he play his best against Moya anyway? Yes, he was lazy in that match, but wouldn't you be if you were Federer? No offence, but if you're as good as Federer, you know that Moya has barely no chance to win if you play your game. You see the upcoming finals, know that Roddick is playing some of his best tennis of his carreer and you wonder if Moya is worth your extra energy. You'd probably conclude 'no'. In the end, Moya didn't agree and you ended up being surprised and rising your level again.

If that so called 'inconsistency' you refer to is due to this 'body saving' aspect, then think again whether it really is inconsistency or just plain old strategy.

Oh and by this in no means I state that Roddick will never beat Federer, I just don't think he will ever beat Federer consistently. Compare it to Sampras & Agassi for that matter. Sure Agassi has beaten Sampras in the past, but noone on this board has to think twice about who is the superior player..

perfmode
11-19-2004, 04:04 AM
Mark my words : He will eventually surpass Fed. Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent. Case in point : Today's match vs. Moya. Roddick is hungry for that #1 spot and is more willing to risk more.

That said, as much as I love Coria, he will get manhandled by Roddick tomorrow. I predict 6-1 6-2. Here we have the biggest serve on the tour vs. the weakest serve on tour. Roddick serves in the high 130s, low 140s, while Coria can barely break 100mph, and averages 85mph or so FIRST serves.

He's lazy and inconsistent? He's been consistently whooping the Top 10's arses all year long. He's been consistently winning grandslams.

Feņa14
11-19-2004, 04:12 AM
Roddick never could, and never will be able to beat Federer with any kind of consistency.

Federer is possibly the finest player to play this game, Roddick has very poor returns and his volleys are UGLY and he often gets lucky like the point at 2-5 in the Tie-Break with Henman.

Roddick would need to step everything up to even challenge Federer, Roddick was playing the match of his life in the Wimbledon final this year and only got 1 set for all his work, Federer was playing bad that day aswell.

They could play in the final, but I wouldn't bet against Hewitt taking out Roddick. What I want is a Hewitt V Henman final, Henman wants revenge lol

Noelle
11-19-2004, 04:58 AM
Let's not talk about who will surpass whom. Obviously everyone has their favorite.

It so happens my favorite gets lucky in tie-breaks. ;)

Russell Finch
11-19-2004, 05:07 AM
Hewitt v Henman ?

Only one winner there Liam, and he ain't a Brit.

Rabbit
11-19-2004, 05:17 AM
Mark my words : He will eventually surpass Fed. Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent.

Lazy and inconsistent? Bored is probably more like it. :)

Roddick's behavior and post-match comments have been winning me over as well. Even after losing the biggest final of his life at Wimbledon (it is still the premier Grand Slam), he was gracious. When asked about his "rivalry" with Federer, he said "I have to win a couple of these in order for it to be called a rivalry". I am also warming to his sense of humor. Calling a chair umpire "Captain Obvious" was great.

His game is another matter. No matter how much I see it, I don't like it. From reading these comments comparing Roddick to Federer, I'm reminded of another duo, Lendl and McEnroe. Lendl was always described as "robotic" and a "machine". Now there are some obvious similarities, both Lendl and Roddick hit the ball hard enough to make it cry, they are both back courters, and neither one will ever volley like a natural s/v player. But, there are some obvious differences. Lendl was in far better physical condition, IMO Lendl had more drive because of where he came from, Lendl had better stroke mechanics, and finally Lendl was a far better tactician than Roddick. Roddick still has some physical woes that I believe are directly related to a combination of his game and an ultra-stiff frame. He's going to pay the price in his elbow before too much longer.

Like the old saying goes, you can't polish a *****, you can't teach someone to volley like a natural. Tony Roche worked with Lendl until I'm sure both of their hands bled, but Lendl could never pull off the S/V for an entire Grand Slam effort. Technically, Lendl was perfect on his volleys. But, he never had the soul of a S/V player. While I applaud Roddick on his efforts to improve his volley to beat Federer, I fear that he is tactically going down the same road Chang did in his effort to serve better. He's going to lose focus of what brought him success in the first place. IMO, Roddick should work more on his movement, physical conditioning, and backhand. He has the best tactial mind in the game working for him, he should implore Gilbert to develop a strategy that would enable him to win with his game. Conversely, Rios never tried to serve like a tall guy, he worked on his strengths instead and got to the top of the game and was probably the best shotmaker of his era.

Feņa14
11-19-2004, 05:17 AM
:lol: I agree about the Hewitt V Henman final.

I like both players and I want someone else to win a big tournament other than Federer, Roddick or Safin.

Having said that, I'm going to support the Winner of the Henman V Safin match in the semi's and hopefully the final.

Anonymous
11-19-2004, 05:34 AM
Thanks for admitting it, I don't see what's wrong with him, he's a good guy

jun
11-19-2004, 05:48 AM
HIs off court behavior hasn't changed much...He has always been gracious when he loses, and isn't afraid to admit that he got lucky or was doing things poorly etc...

It looked like Roddick really worked on his volleys. Roddick is never going to be serve-volley. But if he gets good enough at it to be able to incorporate into his game, he could be that much more dangerous. It could put extra pressure on returning his serve, as the other player will no longer be able to "bunt" back the serve.

In long run, Federer will have winning record against Roddick. But I think Roddick will find a way to pull off more wins against him.

Free_Martha
11-19-2004, 08:30 AM
Yes well it was only a matter of time before people got over their "Roddick Phobias"

LOL That is true. :wink:

BiGGieStuFF
11-19-2004, 10:23 AM
:lol: I agree about the Hewitt V Henman final.

I like both players and I want someone else to win a big tournament other than Federer, Roddick or Safin.

Having said that, I'm going to support the Winner of the Henman V Safin match in the semi's and hopefully the final.I want henman to win it as well.

Sad to see that out of the Safin-Henman match tonight only one will qualify. Both are deserving and it will be tough to say who will get it.

Henman over Federer and then Henman over roddick to pay back for his loss in the round robin earlier :)

iamamultitasker
11-19-2004, 10:29 AM
His game is another matter. No matter how much I see it, I don't like it. From reading these comments comparing Roddick to Federer, I'm reminded of another duo, Lendl and McEnroe. Lendl was always described as "robotic" and a "machine". Now there are some obvious similarities, both Lendl and Roddick hit the ball hard enough to make it cry, they are both back courters, and neither one will ever volley like a natural s/v player.

Rabbit,

For one thing Lendl never had Roddick's serve. That one weapon is a huge asset as we all know. Secondly, to be effective with your volleys you don't have to be a total s/v player. Watching Roddick play a "game on" Safin, I could see how he was mixing up his play, doing some s/v, coming to the net when Safin wasn't expecting it. He won a lot of those points and really frustrated Safin when he held serve after a 0-40 start. I could also see how this might lead to a better game for Roddick where he can win more points while taking less risk.

I am not saying he is ever going to be a total s/v player, but adding another tool like this (which we probably all agree he didn't have before) gives his game another dimension which can only improve his chances against Federer. I think most experienced tennis players will agree that it puts pressure on you not knowing what the other guy is going to do. If Roddick can keep improving that volley (and I think he can) it will force Roger or whoever he is playing to take more risk and to play with less certainty not knowing when Roddick is coming in and possibly fearing such an event.

Finally, I think some get the impression that Federer is nonchalant and lazy because he is so calm out there. That is part of why he is so great under fire and also part of his mystique. Does he even know fear?

The tennis guy
11-19-2004, 10:37 AM
Mark my words : He will eventually surpass Fed. Federer is great, I take nothing away from him, but he is lazy and inconsistent. Case in point : Today's match vs. Moya. Roddick is hungry for that #1 spot and is more willing to risk more.


Federer lazy and inconsistent? LOL.

If he were, he would have tanked that match after the first set against Moya because regardless of the result, he will finish the group as #1. But he tried to win, won! By the way, a lazy and inconsistent Federer still hits more winners than errors.

The tennis guy
11-19-2004, 10:50 AM
A lot of discussions on Roddick revolve around his personality. I don't care about personality that much, for any player. I watch tennis.

He has improved, no one denies that. However, there is nothing he can change his style of play. He is not a free flowing tennis player style wise like Federer and Sampras. His motions are quite jerky.

Whether he can overtake Federer depends on Federer not Roddick. If Federer keeps relatively injury free, and his motivation, he can hold on his position, no question. That must be very annoying for Roddick.

davey25
11-19-2004, 10:58 AM
I predict Federer and Roddick will retire the same year. If they dont they will stop being a threat to win majors the same year, or Roddick earlier. Roddick will never overtake Federer for #1 so he will never be #1 again.

Roddick mentally tougher than Federer? That is why a sluggish Federer dug so deep at key moments he won this years Wimbledon final against a Roddick playing out of his skin. No way is Roddick the mentally tougher of the two.

elbuzzard
11-19-2004, 11:16 AM
"A lot of discussions on Roddick revolve around his personality. I don't care about personality that much, for any player. I watch tennis."

personality is part of the tennis mentality. the mental aspect is a huge part of the game. i do get a kick out of roddick and hewitt pumping themselves up after a big shot but i think that federer and samprass are more intimidating with thier nonchalant demeanor. it sends the message that "yeah, i made a great shot but i expect to make that shot!"

Rabbit
11-19-2004, 11:22 AM
Rabbit,

For one thing Lendl never had Roddick's serve. That one weapon is a huge asset as we all know.

While Lendl never had Roddick's serve, he had one of the consistently biggest serves of his era; hence the comparison.

Secondly, to be effective with your volleys you don't have to be a total s/v player.

Agreed, but someone who is not natural at it is rarely going to be either comfortable or effective enough to use it as a viable tactic, especially when things are tight. Steffi Graf could hit one helluva topspin backhand in practice, but when things got tight, she always reverted back to her bread and butter. The pros stick with what brung 'em when the going gets tough.

The old adage "never change a winning game and always change a losing one" applies, but the hard part is knowing when to change that game.


Watching Roddick play a "game on" Safin, I could see how he was mixing up his play, doing some s/v, coming to the net when Safin wasn't expecting it. He won a lot of those points and really frustrated Safin when he held serve after a 0-40 start. I could also see how this might lead to a better game for Roddick where he can win more points while taking less risk.

That match was basically serparated by two points in two tiebreaks. I don't have Roddick's net statistics, but I don't think they were the winning edge in the match. Rather, I think his ability to hold serve and serve well made the difference. Again, we're talking basically about two points that separated the two men.

I am not saying he is ever going to be a total s/v player, but adding another tool like this (which we probably all agree he didn't have before) gives his game another dimension which can only improve his chances against Federer.

Yes, and my point here was exactly what you said. Tony Roche and Ivan Lendl worked for years on giving Lendl that same edge. And, technically on his volley, Lendl was perfect. Problem is that you can't make a natural volleyer out of someone who is a natural baseliner. Roddick got to the big dance by playing with his strengths. Brad Gilbert, when asked this very question, said that by the time a player is 21-ish, it's nearly impossible to improve what are perceived as deficient areas (by pro standards) in their games.

I think most experienced tennis players will agree that it puts pressure on you not knowing what the other guy is going to do.

I totally agree and this is evidenced by Roger Federer's success in the modern game. Challenge here is the ability to do everything. Hardly anybody can do everything at the top level of the game ala Roger Federer. IMO, Federer is currently the only player to put it all together.

If Roddick can keep improving that volley (and I think he can) it will force Roger or whoever he is playing to take more risk and to play with less certainty not knowing when Roddick is coming in and possibly fearing such an event.

Well, Roddick has been working on his volley for over a year now and I don't see marked improvement. Ken Flach, a guy who knows a thing or two about the volley, wrote an article in Tennis magazine about Roddick's volley pointing out the fundamental flaw in his grip. Roddick has never been and IMO will never be a natural at net. There's nothing wrong with this, my point was that he should not try to be something he'll never be ala Michael Chang.

Of course that was his forehand volley, but of all the two-handed backhand players in the world, I can't think of very many who have great backhand volleys. Roddick's certainly doesn't stand out from the crowd.

Jayzzz
11-19-2004, 11:44 AM
Okay, maybe lazy and inconsistent compared to what he CAN accomplish if he gave it 100% every point. Like I said, I thinK Federer is the best in the world, no question, but i think his bordem, if you want to call it that, may catch up to him. This may be because he's very confident right now, and feels nobody is a major threat to him. When push comes to shove, no doubt Federer can rise, but it would be nice to see him step it up every point.

EDIT: Okay if anyone is lazy it has to be Gaudio! Anyone else watching the match now (if you want to call it a match), against Hewitt?

iamamultitasker
11-19-2004, 11:51 AM
Rabbit,

You make some good points (and a lot of other ones :) ). I don't know what you are seeing out there, but I say that against a big-hitting Safin, Roddick came up with 3 or 4 volleys that I'd never seen him hit before. Hard, decisive and penetrating. Even though Lendl could never develop a game volley, I can see Roddick doing it right before my eyes.

Also, your point about 2 or 3 points being the difference in the match between Safin and Roddick, this is often the case between competitive players. In this case, I saw Roddick hit winners on 2 or 3 volleys which were a big part of why he won a match against a guy who was playing as well as he can. On certain days, I can see 2 or 3 points being the means to beating Federer.

Roddick is not now as good as Fed, but given his huge serve he only needs a few extra points to break serve and win the match. I think this is his strategy for improvement. Will it work? We don't need to debate it - time will tell.

davey25
11-19-2004, 11:53 AM
When Federer plays Roddick Federer wins points at the net and Roddick gets passed every time. It will happen again.

Safin was not playing as well as he can and his passing shots were poor, even a poor volleyer would have volleyed them away.
Roger's best is better than anything Safin can do so even if Safin was playing as well as he can it wouldnt compare to what he would face against Roger playing as well as he can.

davey25
11-19-2004, 12:01 PM
Unless Roddick has a great serving day and Hewitt is making an uncharacteristic number of unforced errors I expect Hewitt to beat Roddick in the semis. Unlike Henman and Safin Hewitt will hit great passing shots which will go by Roddick if he comes in. He will also return Roddick's serve better than those two and Roddick will have trouble returning Hewitt's serve.

Brettolius
11-19-2004, 12:01 PM
elbuzzard,
so you live on 420 highland road? i don't get it 8)

NoBadMojo
11-19-2004, 12:18 PM
roddick is a very very long way from being a good volleyer. he is still out of control w it and i think he is winning points on it just now because his oppenents are surprised he is doing it..you have to remember he was beating everyone else except for fed by staying back anyway...him serve and volleying against fed may improve his chances slightly, but fed has a great return of serve and fed seems to also be improving. he is all over the net and suseptible (sp?) to lobs both offensive and defensive, and pretty soon he will get slice lobbed and topspin lobbed when the other players figure out his nose is almost over the net..it is good he is doing it more and he has improved, but his place is standing 20 feet behind the baseline....that position alone precludes him from being at the net...he will throw in some serve/volley play though just to keep oppnents guessing and to make his serve more effective IMO.

PugArePeopleToo
11-19-2004, 02:07 PM
Compare Federer and Roddick of 2003 and 2004. Is the gap between them wider now or narrower?

NoBadMojo
11-19-2004, 02:41 PM
i dunno Pug.....fed has a huge lead in the points over Roddick. maybe someone will know what the point spread was at the end of last seaon? if that is a good indicator? interesting question..i think they've both improved, but i think fed is far more gifted....also the better you are, the tuffer it is to improve.....like going from a 2.5 all the way to a 4.0 isnt huge..but going from say a 5.0 to 5.5 really is......it's scarey to think of Fed playing even better, but he seems to be

voltman
11-19-2004, 02:55 PM
I don't mind his game, but I hate the drool he's drenched in. Not his fault I suppose.

Rickson
11-19-2004, 03:28 PM
Roddick's volley strategy against Federer has always been to hit toward his backhand side. Federer passes Roddick more with his backhand than any other player on tour. Roddick should definitely be very selective when he goes to net against Federer.

davey25
11-20-2004, 07:10 AM
Of course the gap between Federer and Roddick 2004 is much more in Federers favor than Federer vs Roddick of 2003. Is anybody forgetting Federer didnt even end the year 1 next year and this year he had it wrapped up by the end of the U.S open.

Rabbit
11-20-2004, 08:39 AM
Is anybody forgetting Federer didnt even end the year 1 next year and this year he had it wrapped up by the end of the U.S open.

I'm sorry, could you rephrase the question?

IMO, there is a marked difference in both players between this year and last. The difference for Federer IMO began at last year's Masters' Cup in Houston. He beat the entire field and while lucky in the Agassi match, IMO it gave him a lot of confidence.

Roddick, on the other hand, seemed to tail off significantly after his U.S. Open victory. He had a great run during the hardcourts leading up to the Open, but afterward, it appears that he lost some of his swagger. I still think his newfound determination to attack the net will be short lived. I agree with Mojo that his positioning at net is such that he is susceptible to the lob. It also proves up that along with his technique at net, his positioning is somewhat suspect. In other words, the guy is all at sea at net.

Now for the good news. Those of you who have TTC, I hope you watched the dubs last night. There were two of the best matches I have ever seen. The Bryans vs. Knowles/Nestor had a couple of the best points I have ever seen. The preceding match between Black/Uliette and Woodbridge/Bjorkman was a study in turning points. Kudos to TTC for broadcasting the dubs. I have watched their coverage more than ESPN's of the singles.