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View Full Version : The Mofeeees has a boring game


Defcon
06-04-2008, 12:34 PM
I haven't seem him play much, but I got up early today for Feds and what I saw from La Monf was enough to put me to sleep.

He's tall and lanky with good reach, and speed, so he can get to anything. And he stands about 50ft back, hits ultra safe moonballs off both wings and waits patiently for errors. Every once in a while he'd throw in a serve bomb to wake himself up.

Its the perfect clay court strategy if your opponent has no power and can't keep 2 balls in play, but its about as fun to watch as seniors shuffleball.

Nadal_Freak
06-04-2008, 12:36 PM
Dude he is awesome to watch. Big serve and occassional rips on the backhand and forehand. My second favorite player to watch after Nadal.

Defcon
06-04-2008, 12:42 PM
Thats an interesting observation, as I find Nadal very exciting to watch, in a "how the hell did he do that again!!" way.

Mofees looks like he's hardly bothered to be on court at all.

bluetrain4
06-04-2008, 12:45 PM
I find his play interesting only because we don't see it that often.

He's like a giant male Aranxta Sanchez Vicario with a big serve who always poses the threat of a huge groundstroke winner, but only rips it intermittently between retrieving shots.

I'm sure if I saw Monfils all the time, I'd get bored. I like watching players frustrate other players. I think Fed will handle him fairly easily, maybe a couple of close sets.

Great run to the SFs though.

daddy
06-04-2008, 12:49 PM
He needs a change in tactical aproach but as Moose mentioned his coaches are going to clinics for treatment after working with him. Aparently he does not want to listen to them a bit, just is too stubborn and sticks to his almost pusher like style. For a guy who posseses as big serve as you get, good volleys and hardest groundies in the game + with the phisical abilities he has, its just a major bummer he can not do squat to change the fallacious tactics he stick to.

He is boring to watch mearly because he is not using what weapons he posseses.

Nadal_Freak
06-04-2008, 12:51 PM
Sometimes I get ****ed because he is more about flash than substance but that also adds to the entertainment of watching and the frustration that he could do more.

Defcon
06-04-2008, 12:51 PM
If he continues to stand so far behind he has no chance against Fed. Ferrer is an idiot, all he had to do was outlast Mofees, but he became frustrated at all the balls coming back and tried for winners. Not his game. And he has no plan B. The other top players (well 3 of them anyway) won't let him get away.

daddy
06-04-2008, 12:55 PM
If he continues to stand so far behind he has no chance against Fed. Ferrer is an idiot, all he had to do was outlast Mofees, but he became frustrated at all the balls coming back and tried for winners. Not his game. And he has no plan B. The other top players (well 3 of them anyway) won't let him get away.

Word. Ferrer is not an idiot, it can happen. He lost it somewhere towards the end of third set. He is a grinder with weapons but I feel Monfils is a bad matchup for him as he is a defensive beat with quite an arsenal at his disposal. That is when Gael is actually on court to play tennis.

Nadal_Freak
06-04-2008, 12:55 PM
If he continues to stand so far behind he has no chance against Fed. Ferrer is an idiot, all he had to do was outlast Mofees, but he became frustrated at all the balls coming back and tried for winners. Not his game. And he has no plan B. The other top players (well 3 of them anyway) won't let him get away.
I disagree. The grinders/moonballers have more success against Federer on clay than the more aggressive players. Fed's defense and the slowness of the court is too hard to overpower him. If Monfils will ever beat Federer, this is his best chance.

bluetrain4
06-04-2008, 12:59 PM
I agree with people who think he is wasting his weapons, to some degree.

Also, court positioning is really tough to change. If you grow up playing 15 feet behind the baseline, your strokes, your timing, your angles, your court sense is based on that position.

It's easy for us to say, "Hey Gael, just move up," but it's got to be tough, as his length of stroke, where he takes the ball, and the time he has to respond is all changed if he changes his court position.

Somone on another thread alluded to the fact that when Monfils was younger, he was such a better athlete that he could win just by running everything down and getting balls back. That upbringing is still apparent today. He's clearly not comfortable being an all-out attacking player, even if he does occasionally unleash huge shots.

It seems so strange to us because of his physical traits, which scream "aggressive tennis." Yet, in his mind, he's a retriever, and it's hard to change a player's mindset, especially if he is stubborn, which it sounds like Gael is.

Defcon
06-04-2008, 01:01 PM
I disagree. The grinders/moonballers have more success against Federer on clay than the more aggressive players. Fed's defense and the slowness of the court is too hard to overpower him. If Monfils will ever beat Federer, this is his best chance.

Did you mean with Monfils instead of Fed, because otherwise it doesn't make sense.

This would be a good match for Fed to try out some net rushes. He can beat Gael from the baseline but it'd be a longer match.

obow
06-04-2008, 01:02 PM
Monfils plays defensively with discipline and patience, that is what brings the results on the clay.

Nadal_Freak
06-04-2008, 01:06 PM
Did you mean with Monfils instead of Fed, because otherwise it doesn't make sense.

This would be a good match for Fed to try out some net rushes. He can beat Gael from the baseline but it'd be a longer match.
I'm saying Federer will have more of a challenge against Monfils on clay than Ferrer who is a Fed clone. Monfils also has the crowd support. I expect a pretty good match.

Defcon
06-04-2008, 01:09 PM
Ferrer who is a Fed clone.

You cannot be serious!! That is a ridiculous statement.

Nadal_Freak
06-04-2008, 01:12 PM
You cannot be serious!! That is a ridiculous statement.
He is to Federer what Almagro is to Nadal.

Miami Tiburon
06-04-2008, 01:12 PM
I think Monfils is one of the most entertaining guys on the tour it would be great if he can one day get into the top 10.Wheter he wins or looses he always seems to be having a blast.

zagor
06-04-2008, 01:14 PM
He is to Federer what Almagro is to Nadal.

You sounded like Ferrer has a similar playing style to Federer(his clone)which is to what he reacted to.You probably meant to say that Ferrer has a mental block against Federer which I agree with but I also think that Federer is a bad match-up for Ferrer playing wise.

Mr Topspin
06-04-2008, 01:22 PM
I have been saying that if Monfils used all his natural gifts for attacking than defending he would imo be a top 10 player ala Roddick. He has potential weapons on serve, forehand and backhand. But as others have said, he has a retrievers mindset. I hope he listens to his coaches at one point because he has the raw talent to be so much more than he is.

skiracer55
06-04-2008, 01:23 PM
...but I think the guy has talent. My prediction: Monfils in 4 sets over Federer in the semis, Nadal in straights over Djoko in the other half, Monfils in 5 sets over Nadal in the finals. You heard it here first...

crazylevity
06-04-2008, 08:52 PM
...but I think the guy has talent. My prediction: Monfils in 4 sets over Federer in the semis, Nadal in straights over Djoko in the other half, Monfils in 5 sets over Nadal in the finals. You heard it here first...

Most of the time, where i hear it first i also hear it last.

And the sound of all the other posters laughing.:)

NamRanger
06-04-2008, 09:52 PM
He needs a change in tactical aproach but as Moose mentioned his coaches are going to clinics for treatment after working with him. Aparently he does not want to listen to them a bit, just is too stubborn and sticks to his almost pusher like style. For a guy who posseses as big serve as you get, good volleys and hardest groundies in the game + with the phisical abilities he has, its just a major bummer he can not do squat to change the fallacious tactics he stick to.

He is boring to watch mearly because he is not using what weapons he posseses.


He has to be doing something right, because he made the SFs.


He may be boring, but he is doing exactly what Andy Murray does normally all the time. Push, push, push, push, rip a ball, push, push, push, push, etc.

!Tym
06-04-2008, 10:11 PM
Bruguera was kind of like this. Bruguera could hit some of the hardest groundies you'd ever see one second, then he'd go into all-out ball retrieval mode and rely on his foot speed and length and just push balls back. As Malivai Washington has said about him, he's always had the ability to crush the ball, but just chose not to that often. The difference imo is that Bruguera's defensive balls produced a much higher arc and bounce on average, which is kind of an offense in itself.

The other big difference is that Bruguera's push tactics were in some sense a *ploy* he used strategically to lull you into sleep or against certain opponents and styles he knew it would frustrate, BUT this was also not really his primary strategy either. The way to think of it, is that Bruguera saw his pushing as a PART of his strategy, kind of like a good ol' 1-2 combination. In other words, Bruguera also knew WHEN to turn it on as well, and not necessarily for just a shot here or there either. The 94 French finals is the perfect example. He played very conservatively but soundly for two sets, the third he got down early then decided to tank it; then BAM all of a sudden in the fourth out of nowhere he decides to turn on the afterburners like there's no tomorrow and just blitzkrieg's a shell-shocked Berasategui who never saw it coming. The result? 6-1 blow-out to close it out with Bruguera hitting "nothing but lasers" as Enberg put it. "Maybe the champ playing a little possum there...."

EXACTLY. That's the difference. Bruguera pushed to test your buttons I feel, but he had more of a jabber's mentality with the mindset that I'm going to keep on probing you, but with the intention of eventually catching you off guard and pouncing on you. If Bruguera decided to turn it on, he would REALLY turn it on and COMMIT to it, and Monofils needs to show that same kind of committment on a at minimum part-time basis as well.

It's like if you stun an opponent, the opponent's GOT to know that even if you're a primarily defensive fighter, that should the opportunity present itself you WILL pounce like a tiger hungry for flesh. If your opponent doesn't fear that you will, he'll be much more level headed and better able to regroup from situations in which he is momentarily stunned. He'll have no reason to ever panic in other words. And half of sports is getting in your opponents heads and saying YES, you DO have reason to panic, be very wary of me for even when I look like I'm sleeping at the wheel, I'm NOT. I mean why was Freddy Kreuger so scary? If all Freddy did once he got you on the run was slash you once across the cheeks so that it really hurt, and then decided, eh, nah, I think I'll just pull back for a few, let my opponent recover, maybe hit the snooze button a little get a few extra minutes sleep in before I return to "slasher" mode, why would anyone really fear Freddy? Still, scary? Yeah, but not as much as when you KNOW he has a nasty habit of always allowing you to recover and regain your bearings.

Monofils to me has always made me feel like his mind and body are on coaster wheels. Even when he tried the whole paddle tennis thing out, it seemed like his mindset was to win on his cagey athleticism and length, rather than to IMPOSE his physicality and SKILL on you.

He needs to learn to intimidate players with his manic energy and athleticism and skill put to POSITIVE use.

He can always be a BASE defensive player, but like Bruguera he needs to establish that he's got k.o. power AND he's not afraid to use it when the time is right. AND sometimes that means going for the throat from the very beginning. When Bruguera played Medvedev in the 93 semis, he did just that and blitzed him, 6-0. Medvedev started off very nervous, but the point is that in matches like this Bruguera showed that he was willing to take the lead and jump on you before you could find your range and jump on him. It doesn't mean you ALWAYS have to do this, but if you NEVER try doing so and thus never succeed in doing so in a big way and on a big stage, then you'll NEVER build any fear factor in the other players, and so much of what separates the top players from the also rans is just that, FEAR FACTOR.

What I think Monofils really needs at this point in his career is to have just one awe-inspiring, SCARY match where right from the word go it's clear he plans on just SWARMING you with his athleticism and not give you even the slighest chance to breathe. Right now, he's like the swamp thing. You feel like he kind of just surrounds you in a mucky mess, but he never really seems to have it in him to go all tsunami, tidal wave on you. Every now and then he must overwhelm a top quality opponent in a way that the other players won't soon be forgetting. I wish Monofils would watch a tape of GSP the superior athlete dry-humping a red-faced Matt Hughes like a smelly sardine before his next match and think, gee, that should be me. I feel that until he has that epiphany moment and the OTHER players do to, Monofils will always be viewed as the 80-90% for-sure miss prospect that he is now.

!Tym
06-04-2008, 10:14 PM
Put it another way, Nadal is also a physical specimen. The difference is that even when Nadal was VERY young, right from the word go, you felt this young kid ready and willing to IMPOSE his athleticism on you in ways that you would not soon be forgetting. Muster? Maybe not quite the pure athlete of some others, but even still he IMPOSED his fitness and snarl on you, his brute physicality, in ways that opponents wouldn't soon forget. It's not always so much what you do, but also the AURA you give off.

hyperwarrior
06-04-2008, 11:52 PM
You cannot be serious!! That is a ridiculous statement.

Everything you read from the freak, don't take him seriously. It's just a joke. lol!

ruski07
06-05-2008, 12:13 AM
i heard about 3 weeks ago monfils was having a fight with his coach as usual over where they think his game should go, later in the week he was hitting with safin and apparently safin told monfils to pull his head in and listen to his coach cause hes wasting his talent, it appears the words from the big man has stuck in his mind

Leublu tennis
06-05-2008, 01:27 AM
....................................

tennis-newb
06-05-2008, 01:42 AM
yes i agree, watching his game isnt exciting at all!

moonbat
06-05-2008, 01:55 AM
I loved the way Monfils played Ferrer---looked like "rope a dope" to me. Had no trouble handling Ferrer's pace, got to everything, and fed him junk back, then ripped the winner when he had the opportunity. No wonder Ferrer was frustrated.

Techniques
06-05-2008, 03:05 AM
If it is true that Safin had a word with Monfils that is great on Safin's behalf. I think Safin realizes that he could've been so much better- but it's probably too late now. I don't think he wats others to make the same mistake he did. Monfils has all the talent in the world. His groundies can be massive when he uses them (I still remember when he hit a a 190 kmph forehand at the Aussie Open:shock:) and has the athletic ability + versality in his game. For such a tall guy he moves better than anyone else on the tour. He is LIGHTNING. And his vertical leap - AMAZING. He's not the baseline game, the athleticism, the net game and masive serve as well. He seriously IMO is a potential world number one. He's a show pony as well, entertains the crowd, loves the big stage I feel. However, he just doesn't work hard enough. Apparently he loves playing basketball as well and doesn't train as much as he should, instead playing basketball. He thinks he can just float along and be top. He can float along- but he'll never be top 10 if he does that. This kid is seriously the full package. He just has to work a bit harder and I guarantee he will be a world number one. Yes, it's a big call but he has better attributes to his game than anyone else on tour. I doubt he'll win against Fed- he'll push him a bit but playing so far behind the baseline won't work against Fed. Monfils should be playing much closer to the baseline. If he was playing like Baghdatis style, right on the baseline he'd dominate. Monfils has the most untapped potential on tour.

daddy
06-05-2008, 04:37 AM
Who better than Safin to tell you this ? He wasted his career becuse of the mental issues to some extent ( because compared to Monfils he did much more and had a respectfull career at least ). I only hope Ruski's information is correct.

Ruski - where did you get the info from if its not a secret ? Thanks.

carlos djackal
06-05-2008, 04:55 AM
yap he is so boring to watch.....

MEAC_ALLAMERICAN
06-05-2008, 05:06 AM
Although he has a boring game, yet so many think can be one of the best in the word. Andy Murray has a boring game and yet everyone makes a big deal out of him.

So what is the big deal? :confused:

BTW: John McEnroe or Ted Robinson *not sure which one* mentioned that practice session with Marat Safin back in Monte Carlo, yesterday during the Ferrer/Monfils match.

daddy
06-05-2008, 05:47 AM
Although he has a boring game, yet so many think can be one of the best in the word. Andy Murray has a boring game and yet everyone makes a big deal out of him.

Meac man. The reason is these guys have such a good feel for court and the ball, are able to volley and hit groundies so much better than your average pro. They move as fast as possible and have probably and aruably the best defensive games along with Nadal on tour. There's a lot to them what made them the tennis' biggest hopes. Age factor is a big one also, they had all these while being minors and that's why all the hype.

Mikael
06-05-2008, 07:37 AM
Bruguera was kind of like this. Bruguera could hit some of the hardest groundies you'd ever see one second, then he'd go into all-out ball retrieval mode and rely on his foot speed and length and just push balls back. As Malivai Washington has said about him, he's always had the ability to crush the ball, but just chose not to that often. The difference imo is that Bruguera's defensive balls produced a much higher arc and bounce on average, which is kind of an offense in itself.

The other big difference is that Bruguera's push tactics were in some sense a *ploy* he used strategically to lull you into sleep or against certain opponents and styles he knew it would frustrate, BUT this was also not really his primary strategy either. The way to think of it, is that Bruguera saw his pushing as a PART of his strategy, kind of like a good ol' 1-2 combination. In other words, Bruguera also knew WHEN to turn it on as well, and not necessarily for just a shot here or there either. The 94 French finals is the perfect example. He played very conservatively but soundly for two sets, the third he got down early then decided to tank it; then BAM all of a sudden in the fourth out of nowhere he decides to turn on the afterburners like there's no tomorrow and just blitzkrieg's a shell-shocked Berasategui who never saw it coming. The result? 6-1 blow-out to close it out with Bruguera hitting "nothing but lasers" as Enberg put it. "Maybe the champ playing a little possum there...."

EXACTLY. That's the difference. Bruguera pushed to test your buttons I feel, but he had more of a jabber's mentality with the mindset that I'm going to keep on probing you, but with the intention of eventually catching you off guard and pouncing on you. If Bruguera decided to turn it on, he would REALLY turn it on and COMMIT to it, and Monofils needs to show that same kind of committment on a at minimum part-time basis as well.

It's like if you stun an opponent, the opponent's GOT to know that even if you're a primarily defensive fighter, that should the opportunity present itself you WILL pounce like a tiger hungry for flesh. If your opponent doesn't fear that you will, he'll be much more level headed and better able to regroup from situations in which he is momentarily stunned. He'll have no reason to ever panic in other words. And half of sports is getting in your opponents heads and saying YES, you DO have reason to panic, be very wary of me for even when I look like I'm sleeping at the wheel, I'm NOT. I mean why was Freddy Kreuger so scary? If all Freddy did once he got you on the run was slash you once across the cheeks so that it really hurt, and then decided, eh, nah, I think I'll just pull back for a few, let my opponent recover, maybe hit the snooze button a little get a few extra minutes sleep in before I return to "slasher" mode, why would anyone really fear Freddy? Still, scary? Yeah, but not as much as when you KNOW he has a nasty habit of always allowing you to recover and regain your bearings.

Monofils to me has always made me feel like his mind and body are on coaster wheels. Even when he tried the whole paddle tennis thing out, it seemed like his mindset was to win on his cagey athleticism and length, rather than to IMPOSE his physicality and SKILL on you.

He needs to learn to intimidate players with his manic energy and athleticism and skill put to POSITIVE use.

He can always be a BASE defensive player, but like Bruguera he needs to establish that he's got k.o. power AND he's not afraid to use it when the time is right. AND sometimes that means going for the throat from the very beginning. When Bruguera played Medvedev in the 93 semis, he did just that and blitzed him, 6-0. Medvedev started off very nervous, but the point is that in matches like this Bruguera showed that he was willing to take the lead and jump on you before you could find your range and jump on him. It doesn't mean you ALWAYS have to do this, but if you NEVER try doing so and thus never succeed in doing so in a big way and on a big stage, then you'll NEVER build any fear factor in the other players, and so much of what separates the top players from the also rans is just that, FEAR FACTOR.

What I think Monofils really needs at this point in his career is to have just one awe-inspiring, SCARY match where right from the word go it's clear he plans on just SWARMING you with his athleticism and not give you even the slighest chance to breathe. Right now, he's like the swamp thing. You feel like he kind of just surrounds you in a mucky mess, but he never really seems to have it in him to go all tsunami, tidal wave on you. Every now and then he must overwhelm a top quality opponent in a way that the other players won't soon be forgetting. I wish Monofils would watch a tape of GSP the superior athlete dry-humping a red-faced Matt Hughes like a smelly sardine before his next match and think, gee, that should be me. I feel that until he has that epiphany moment and the OTHER players do to, Monofils will always be viewed as the 80-90% for-sure miss prospect that he is now.


I saw Monfils' first two rounds at Wimbledon last year and he did just what you described... killing Thomas Johansson first, then Kristof Vliegen, with nothing but crazy power. Heck the guy was serving at 120mph+ on *2nd* serves. Since then I haven't seen much of him, even on TV, so I don't really understand the people that claim he's a pusher. I've seen him blitz through his opposition with power and intimidation... But maybe his gameplan on clay is very different from grass?

daddy
06-05-2008, 07:40 AM
I saw Monfils' first two rounds at Wimbledon last year and he did just what you described... killing Thomas Johansson first, then Kristof Vliegen, with nothing but crazy power. Heck the guy was serving at 120mph+ on *2nd* serves. Since then I haven't seen much of him, even on TV, so I don't really understand the people that claim he's a pusher. I've seen him blitz through his opposition with power and intimidation... But maybe his gameplan on clay is very different from grass?

Very very different. On clay he acts like if he has no weapons, stands at least 10 feet behind the baseline while receiving serve and during rallies which is even more frustrating to watch.

On Grass he is a beast he should be everywhere. He is such a natural player to grass with athletic abilities speed and reach and big serve but you should find a dvd of any of his matches on clay and I bet you - you'd not finish watching it ever.

TheTruth
06-05-2008, 10:17 AM
He is to Federer what Almagro is to Nadal.

Excellently put!

skiracer55
06-05-2008, 10:32 AM
Most of the time, where i hear it first i also hear it last.

And the sound of all the other posters laughing.:)

I know it's not the money bet, but I just got a vibe that Monfils is going to take the whole thing, so I'm going with it...

TheTruth
06-05-2008, 10:34 AM
I loved the way Monfils played Ferrer---looked like "rope a dope" to me. Had no trouble handling Ferrer's pace, got to everything, and fed him junk back, then ripped the winner when he had the opportunity. No wonder Ferrer was frustrated.

That is true! It was a masterful performance. In the past though, I thought Monfils was a bit more explosive, ala James Blake. I was surprised to see him playing this way the other day. Maybe my memory of his play has gotten fuzzy. Anyway, allez Monfils. He is one of the most charismatic players on the tour!

TheTruth
06-05-2008, 10:37 AM
I saw Monfils' first two rounds at Wimbledon last year and he did just what you described... killing Thomas Johansson first, then Kristof Vliegen, with nothing but crazy power. Heck the guy was serving at 120mph+ on *2nd* serves. Since then I haven't seen much of him, even on TV, so I don't really understand the people that claim he's a pusher. I've seen him blitz through his opposition with power and intimidation... But maybe his gameplan on clay is very different from grass?

You just answered my question. I thought I was losing it!