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View Full Version : Is there really DEPTH in men's tennis today? I mean GREAT Depth?


GameSampras
01-06-2009, 11:17 AM
Obviously on Grass and clay there have been pretty much 2 guys dominating the last 4 years. Fed and Nadal.


There is no question they are great but let's be real, depth hasn't exactly been present in it's strongest form, definitely not to the degree some try and set forward.

Hardcourts has been a little tougher but if u look at the past couple of years there have been a few guys dominating and big gap between the top guys and the rest.

Depth has slowly improved but let's not go overboard

Just look at this past year alone. Djokovic, Nadal, Federer and Murray RULED tennis.

Between them they won all 4 slams and 7 of 9 masters events, plus EOY masters Cup. I call this a 4 man show and the rest far behind. They won 12 of the 14 big events. Where is the suffocating, fierce, torturous depth people speak of?


So at the end of the day... Where is the depth? I see 4 guys and the rest the field is just.... there. Of course its more than 03-07 when there were 2 players essentially. But sadly I dont see it changing for a few more years really. At least overall. DO u see any other legit threats who can make a bang in the slams and steal one from these guys? I sure don't. Maybe Tsonga. But I still highly doubt it

Zaragoza
01-06-2009, 11:33 AM
I think the current top 4 are potential no.1 and there are upcoming players like Tsonga and Del Potro who are already top 10 players and getting better. Its a strong era.
Dominating top players will make the rest look worse so people will say theres no depth.
Weaker top players will make the rest look better so people will say theres a lot of depth.

aphex
01-06-2009, 11:41 AM
if ernests gulbis is no. 50 in the world, there is great, great depth

Breaker
01-06-2009, 12:04 PM
Just look at this past year alone. Djokovic, Nadal, Federer and Murray RULED tennis.

Between them they won all 4 slams and 7 of 9 masters events, plus EOY masters Cup. I call this a 4 man show and the rest far behind. They won 12 of the 14 big events. Where is the suffocating, fierce, torturous depth people speak of?


So at the end of the day... Where is the depth? I see 4 guys and the rest the field is just.... there. Of course its more than 03-07 when there were 2 players essentially.

1993: Sampras, Courier, Stich, Bruguera won 6 of 9 Masters series events.

Courier, Sampras, Bruguera held all of the slams, Stich winning "Masters Cup" equivalent.

They shared 11 out of 14 big titles.

1994: Sampras, Agassi, Medvedev, Bruguera won 7/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, Bruguera split the slams, Sampras winning the masters cup.

12/14 big titles.

1995: Sampras, Agassi, Muster, Medvedev won all 9/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, and Muster won the slams.

13/14 big titles.
------------------------------------

If I use your logic, there was no depth from 1993-1995, Sampras' best years arguably.

Also, '03-'04 was much more than two players if you want to use that argument 2005 would be the place, and even then Federer and Nadal won 11/14 big events that year with others taking some spotlight.

Before making claims to put entire generations down look at the facts.

zacinnc78
01-06-2009, 12:17 PM
1993: Sampras, Courier, Stich, Bruguera won 6 of 9 Masters series events.

Courier, Sampras, Bruguera held all of the slams, Stich winning "Masters Cup" equivalent.

They shared 11 out of 14 big titles.

1994: Sampras, Agassi, Medvedev, Bruguera won 7/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, Bruguera split the slams, Sampras winning the masters cup.

12/14 big titles.

1995: Sampras, Agassi, Muster, Medvedev won all 9/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, and Muster won the slams.

13/14 big titles.
------------------------------------

If I use your logic, there was no depth from 1993-1995, Sampras' best years arguably.

Also, '03-'04 was much more than two players if you want to use that argument 2005 would be the place, and even then Federer and Nadal won 11/14 big events that year with others taking some spotlight.

Before making claims to put entire generations down look at the facts.

good work my friend!

seffina
01-06-2009, 12:24 PM
Yes, yes there is.

HydroYang
01-06-2009, 12:28 PM
Yeah, with guys like Gulbis and Nishiori ranked so low,it is huge.

Nadal_Freak
01-06-2009, 12:28 PM
Nadal, Federer, Djokovic, Murray, Tsonga, Simon, Del Potro, and Gulbis? Yeah there is definitely depth. I would say more than the 90's.

EikelBeiter
01-06-2009, 12:29 PM
Yes there is, everyone in top 50 is insane. Thing is that 3 or 4 of them are even more insane :)

quest01
01-06-2009, 12:29 PM
Absolutely there is more depth now than ever before and its only increasing. There is no comparison to the amount of depth and competition now then during the 90's for example. Federer for instance has much more rivals and competition now then Sampras did during the 90's.

Nadal_Freak
01-06-2009, 12:33 PM
Absolutely there is more depth now than ever before and its only increasing. There is no comparison to the amount of depth and competition now then during the 90's for example. Federer for instance has much more rivals and competition now then Sampras did during the 90's.
A lot of this depth started to happen in 2007 and hit stride in 2008. Thus why Fed only had one slam in 2008. ;)

GameSampras
01-06-2009, 12:38 PM
Nadal, Federer, Djokovic, Murray, Tsonga, Simon, Del Potro, and Gulbis? Yeah there is definitely depth. I would say more than the 90's.

And what have Tsonga, Del Potro, Simon,Gulbis done so far of any great value? NOTHING. I dont see any Slams next to their names nor any Masters titles or any other big titles of significance. so until I see some actual results from these guys especially at the slams. I dont consider them threats. They havent won the big ones yet.

Like I said.. Its still the big 4. The rest are just there. Many show promise. But thats all they show.. Promise. Until these guys can show they can take out the big 4 at the most important events, they dont have much significance. Sad but True

David L
01-06-2009, 12:40 PM
I don't think the original poster understands what depth means. Depth does not mean that more players share the titles, that's parity. Depth refers to the high level of play amongst a lot of players. The fact that you have 4 dominant players is irrelevant. If a player came along tomorrow who was twice as good as Federer, then they would dominate the top 4 and everyone else too, it would not affect the depth on tour and would only encourage everyone else to try and get better. Even as it is, the top 4 had their fair share of losses against lower ranked players, again, not that this necessarily indicates depth, because the depth is already there.

Nadal_Freak
01-06-2009, 12:40 PM
And what have Tsonga, Del Potro, Simon,Gulbis done so far of any great value? NOTHING. I dont see any Slams next to their names nor any Masters titles or any other big titles of significance. so until I see some actual results from these guys especially at the slams. I dont consider them threats. They havent won the big ones yet
That's because the top 4 is insane. Tsonga did get to the Finals of the Australian Open. He is also a threat this year as well.

GameSampras
01-06-2009, 12:46 PM
I really dont know how great this top 4 is compared to other eras. Early 90s, 80s, 70s and 60s for example. You can really only say the two are very consistent. (Nadal, Fed). Djoker is very inconsistent. Out of the course of the season he is up, down, all over the place. You never know what Djoker is going to show up. Murray has yet to prove he can win it when it matters most.

oneleggedcardinal
01-06-2009, 12:46 PM
You win...Sampras is GOAT. That is the point of this thread, right?

JankovicFan
01-06-2009, 12:47 PM
I thought we established that fans don't want "depth". They want a dominant champion. It's about being #1 and staying #1. The other guys are just fodder. Depth would mean someone different winning each tournament, no one really dominant. Depth would mean a weak hold on the top ranking, constantly vulnerable and the top spot constantly changing.

Everything is working as it should and has been working for a long time. I don't see any opening for moving the discussion toward how great the old guys are and what pathetic punks the current players are.

GameSampras
01-06-2009, 12:48 PM
You win...Sampras is GOAT. That is the point of this thread, right?

What does this have to do with Sampras? Im just trying to put some things into perspective here. I think people tend overrate the depth of today and the competition is all. I will say its better than the late 90s though.:)

Nadal_Freak
01-06-2009, 12:49 PM
I really dont know how great this top 4 is compared to other eras. Early 90s, 80s, 70s and 60s for example. You can really only say the two are very consistent. (Nadal, Fed). Djoker is very inconsistent. Out of the course of the season he is up, down, all over the place. You never know what Djoker is going to show up. Murray has yet to prove he can win it when it matters most.
Watch him win this Australian Open. I see it as a very high possibility. He beat both Fed and Nadal in the exhibition. He's beaten Fed 3 times in a row and Nadal 2 times in a row. Djokovic wins a lot of tournaments to be considered inconsistent. He does seem disinterested at some parts of the year though.

David L
01-06-2009, 12:56 PM
I really dont know how great this top 4 is compared to other eras. Early 90s, 80s, 70s and 60s for example. You can really only say the two are very consistent. (Nadal, Fed). Djoker is very inconsistent. Out of the course of the season he is up, down, all over the place. You never know what Djoker is going to show up. Murray has yet to prove he can win it when it matters most.
You don't make sense. First you suggest that having only 4 dominant players indicates there is no depth. Then you criticise 2 of them for not doing more winning. Which is it? Maybe they don't win more because it is pretty difficult. You know, depth in the field and all.

David L
01-06-2009, 12:58 PM
I thought we established that fans don't want "depth". They want a dominant champion. It's about being #1 and staying #1. The other guys are just fodder. Depth would mean someone different winning each tournament, no one really dominant. Depth would mean a weak hold on the top ranking, constantly vulnerable and the top spot constantly changing.

Everything is working as it should and has been working for a long time. I don't see any opening for moving the discussion toward how great the old guys are and what pathetic punks the current players are.
No, that would suggest parity, not necessarily depth.

GameSampras
01-06-2009, 12:59 PM
Well they are great players talent wise.. Taking nothing away from their ability. Im just saying its debatable how how they (Djoker, Murray) stack up in the grand scheme things compared to the greats of the other eras. If they are on a Becker, Edberg, Courier, Borg, level etc remains to be seen

David L
01-06-2009, 01:04 PM
What does this have to do with Sampras? Im just trying to put some things into perspective here. I think people tend overrate the depth of today and the competition is all. I will say its better than the late 90s though.:)
Listen to some people who actually know a thing or two about tennis and played at the highest level.



23 December 2003

"Everyone was getting better when I was No 1 in the world and winning majors left and right. I was 10 times the player as I got older. When I was dominating I didn't have any bad matches and players overall weren't as good. The 2002 US Open Pete would beat the 1994 or 1995 Pete easily."

http://www.independent.co.uk/sport/tennis/last-match-was-best-i-ever-played-says-sampras-577514.html


COVER STORY: SEPTEMBER 2006

IT: Few others have seen more changes in tennis. What adjustments did you have to make since the early days of Connors, McEnroe and Lendl?

ANDRE AGASSI: The fitness level has only increased over the years. Connors was 5-foot-9. Now you've got guys routinely that are 6-foot-3 and above. It's rare that you play somebody under that. The physicality has changed dramatically. Compare Nadal at 20 to me at 20. It's a sport that has started to figure out that the stronger and more physical you are, the more capable you are as an athlete. I was onto that earlier than most, building my strength and the base that was the foundation of my game. As a result, I served bigger and was able to handle pace better so as the game got faster, I could just shorten my swing. I got smarter with my shots. I've had to get more aggressive. It used to be where I could just run people around until they fell to the ground. But guys are just too strong now. It's a different game than in the past.

http://www.insidetennis.com/0906_agassi.html


By John McEnroe Jul 2005

Depth may put Sampras record beyond Federer

"This may not be the right time to say it, with Roger Federer on the verge of claiming his third Wimbledon title, but I think as time goes by we will see what a remarkable achievement it was by Pete Sampras to win here seven times. I don't think the Swiss, maybe even a better player than Sampras when compared on all surfaces, will surpass his record.

I'm not saying it's impossible and I do believe that he will win, maybe, as many as five Wimbledon titles, I just think that there is more depth in the game today than there was in Sampras's era, guys who could step up on the grass, like Rafael Nadal and Marat Safin. The big Russian threatened to do so this time, but in the end, as usual, left the Championships prematurely. When Federer gets to five then we can start talking about his chances of overhauling Pete, but not before."

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/sport/tennis/wimbledon/2361935/Depth-may-put-Sampras-record-beyond-Federer.html


AUSTRALIAN OPEN

January 14, 2001

Q. You had a career that went for something like 23 years. You were still playing at the top level at age 38. Now we have a fellow like Pat Rafter contemplating retirement at age 28. What has changed, do you think?

ROD LAVER: Well, I think certainly competition is stiffer now......

Q. Do you see any of the younger players like Safin dominating the game like Sampras has done over the last seven or eight years?

ROD LAVER: I really don't. There is so many good players out there and I look at Lleyton Hewitt who has just come on in the last two, three years. And he came on at age 17. He is all of 19 now. So there are many young kids coming along, Safin winning the US Open. It is incredible to think that, you know, three weeks, four weeks earlier he couldn't beat anybody. He was having a terrible time. But you hit a spirt and you play some great tennis. You get confident. That is -- that can happen with probably 60 or 70 players here in this tournament that if they catch fire and you are not talking about the steadies, the Samprases and Agassis and Todd Martin. Just so many young players out there that can rise up and play their best tennis. I have always thought a lot of times that now you improve overnight, sometimes you play a match the day before and you have a struggle with it and you finally win that match and you come out the next day and all of a sudden you are a different person and you are playing great. You are confident hitting the ball in the middle of the strings. That is what I think happens with all the upsets that you see.

http://www.asapsports.com/show_interview.php?id=913

andrew_fernando2
01-06-2009, 01:07 PM
to answer the op's question.....no, it is not easier for todays players to win grand slams than it was for sampras. and this will be the same in the next generation.

JankovicFan
01-06-2009, 01:09 PM
No, that would suggest parity, not necessarily depth. Parity would mean depth exists. Cumse/cumsa. Yes, we do actually have to agree what depth means, but I think that would be argumentative. Depth obviously means more than one good player at the same level.

S H O W S T O P P E R !
01-06-2009, 01:09 PM
Of course. Before, Fed was king and everyone knew it. He was even nice enough to allow players to actually allow others to win the French Open while he takes the other 3 for a couple years. Now that Fed has fallen, the #1 spot is no longer the shield that allowed Fed to cruise. Nadal not only has to fend off Federer, but Djokovic, Murray, and a whole bunch of other players are looking to make aggressive runs for the top spot, and the new ranking system makes the rankings and the Slams much more competitive.

David L
01-06-2009, 01:17 PM
Parity would mean depth exists. Cumse/cumsa. Yes, we do actually have to agree what depth means, but I think that would be argumentative. Depth obviously means more than one good player at the same level.Here's a thought experiment for you. Imagine you have 100 players all as good as Federer in the top 100, then imagine one new arrival joins the tour who happens to be twice as good as Federer. Would you cease to think of the original 100 as any good? No, you wouldn't and nor would the depth in the field prevent the new arrival from dominating. Equally, you could have 2, 3, 4 etc new arrivals who raise their level above the original 100, but the depth would still be there. In fact, the new arrivals would encourage everyone else to improve even more. What you would not have is complete parity, but the depth would be there.

JankovicFan
01-06-2009, 01:29 PM
Here's a thought experiment for you. Imagine you have 100 players all as good as Federer in the top 100, then imagine one new arrival joins the tour who happens to be twice as good as Federer. Would you cease to think of the original 100 as any good? No, you wouldn't and nor would the depth in the field prevent the new arrival from dominating. Equally, you could have 2, 3, 4 etc new arrivals who raise their level above the original 100, but the depth would still be there. In fact, the new arrivals would encourage everyone else to improve even more. What you would not have is complete parity, but the depth would be there.
That's a strawman, because depth in the context presented is relative to the best players and best results, not to the level of the masses, mediocrity if you will, living in the shadow of those who excel, and not to hypothetical newcomers who somehow blow through the field.

tacou
01-06-2009, 01:30 PM
And what have Tsonga, Del Potro, Simon,Gulbis done so far of any great value? NOTHING.

Tsonga made a GS final, won an AMS event and finished #6 by playing only about half a season. Del Potro won his first tournament, then three more in succession. Simon beat one of the GOAT Federer twice and Nadal on the way to his first AMS final. It was a breakout year for most of them, 09 will be where they shine.

edmondsm
01-06-2009, 01:37 PM
A lot of this depth started to happen in 2007 and hit stride in 2008. Thus why Fed only had one slam in 2008. ;)

^^^trolling

David L
01-06-2009, 01:42 PM
That's a strawman, because depth in the context presented is relative to the best players and best results, not to the level of the masses, mediocrity if you will, living in the shadow of those who excel, and not to hypothetical newcomers who somehow blow through the field.No, quality is quality. The other players in the NBA are not mediocre because they are not as good as Michael Jordan. The same parallels can be made with any talent that stands out from the other exceptional talents. You have Tiger Woods, Maradona, Michael Schumacher, you name it. If you are the 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, even 50th best person on the planet in a particular established field, you are going to be an outstanding talent. People who are rubbish at something could never reach these levels. Not everyone can be the Michael Jordan or Albert Einstein of their age, that's why they are Michael Jordan and Albert Einstein.

That was a rational answer, but one can also observe with the eyes that despite the fact not everyone can elevate to the highest possible position, they are still performing at an extremely high level.

Gorecki
01-06-2009, 01:49 PM
Nadal, Federer, Djokovic, Murray, Tsonga, Simon, Del Potro, and Gulbis? Yeah there is definitely depth. I would say more than the 90's.

Simon? Del POtro?

hell yeah... i declare you are demential!

here is a few examples of "amazing" players from the butpicker era...: Bagdhatis, Roddick, Ferrer, Lopez... want more?

Gorecki
01-06-2009, 01:51 PM
Tsonga made a GS final, won an AMS event and finished #6 by playing only about half a season. Del Potro won his first tournament, then three more in succession. Simon beat one of the GOAT Federer twice and Nadal on the way to his first AMS final. It was a breakout year for most of them, 09 will be where they shine.

and yet you say there is depthin this era? are you confused by any chance?

Zaragoza
01-06-2009, 01:56 PM
here is a few examples of "amazing" players from the butpicker era...: Bagdhatis, Roddick, Ferrer, Lopez... want more?

I didnt know Federer was the buttpicker.

Gorecki
01-06-2009, 01:58 PM
I didnt know Federer was the buttpicker.

actually my nickname for mr cardigans is Sport Billy and his magical man purse!:twisted:

guess what mr morality police... you fail!

veroniquem
01-06-2009, 02:14 PM
Tsonga made a GS final, won an AMS event and finished #6 by playing only about half a season. Del Potro won his first tournament, then three more in succession. Simon beat one of the GOAT Federer twice and Nadal on the way to his first AMS final. It was a breakout year for most of them, 09 will be where they shine.
I agree, there's plenty of depth at the moment, a lot of young players are coming into their own now.

norbac
01-06-2009, 02:16 PM
actually my nickname for mr cardigans is Sport Billy and his magical man purse!:twisted:

guess what mr morality police... you fail!

I just Call Fed Godspeed Maverick, "I just gave her the ol' Godspeed Maverick on the 49'er".

Seriously though, I think there is a lot of depth, there's more of a feeling now that anyone could lose anyday unlike a couple of years ago.

Zaragoza
01-06-2009, 03:11 PM
actually my nickname for mr cardigans is Sport Billy and his magical man purse!:twisted:

guess what mr morality police... you fail!

Not really, you fail by naming players that played their best in the Federer era.
Baghdatis and Roddick were irrelevant last year when the Nadal era started.

ThugNasty
01-06-2009, 03:17 PM
Yup there is. Federer was to good and dominated everybody

Nadal_Freak
01-06-2009, 03:39 PM
^^^trolling
It's the truth. Fed is just not going to dominate anymore due to the depth of the game now. It will also work against Nadal. It will make it that much more difficult for him to win a hard court slam.

jmverdugo
01-06-2009, 03:48 PM
Yes there is. Is not like the top fourth and handling bagles to everyone they play against. This same question is asked every 6 months ... I wonder what is the big deal anyway.

luckyboy1300
01-06-2009, 04:06 PM
Yes there is. Is not like the top fourth and handling bagles to everyone they play against. This same question is asked every 6 months ... I wonder what is the big deal anyway.

because it can skyrocket someone's achievement and belittle another someone's achievement, saying the first someone competed and dominated against a deeper field as opposed to the 2nd someone who only dominated because of a weaker opposition.

Nadal_Freak
01-06-2009, 04:08 PM
because it can skyrocket someone's achievement and belittle another someone's achievement, saying the first someone competed and dominated against a deeper field as opposed to the 2nd someone who only dominated because of a weaker opposition.
Yeah basically it is another Sampras vs. Federer thread and comparing the depth that each of them faced with. It is getting old.

kelz
01-06-2009, 10:07 PM
if ernests gulbis is no. 50 in the world, there is great, great depth

He's not that great. Give him more time.

NamRanger
01-06-2009, 11:06 PM
Not really, you fail by naming players that played their best in the Federer era.
Baghdatis and Roddick were irrelevant last year when the Nadal era started.



Nadal era.... lol. You seem so confident that Nadal will hold on tightly to his spot.

aphex
01-07-2009, 12:30 AM
He's not that great. Give him more time.


watch this please

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7AO1U3nfGH0

Gorecki
01-07-2009, 02:33 AM
:twisted:Not really, you fail by naming players that played their best in the Federer era.
Baghdatis and Roddick were irrelevant last year when the Nadal era started.

How's it gonna be Zarzuela... are we in the Federer era or the Nadal. so all the achievments from 2004 onwards by Nadal are fiction. it only started in 2008? go figure and they never played each other....
:twisted:

just a few birth dates...

Rafael Nadal Parera born June 3, 1986
Marcos Baghdatis born June 17, 1985
Gilles Simon born December 27, 1984
...

i wonder if nadal and Federer are even in the same century???? because according to you they are not in the same era! yeah right...

severe case of paranoia? time ports from Catalunia making the space\time balance to colapse? a case for scientists!

veroniquem
01-07-2009, 05:07 AM
:twisted:

How's it gonna be Zarzuela... are we in the Federer era or the Nadal. so all the achievments from 2004 onwards by Nadal are fiction. it only started in 2008? go figure and they never played each other....
:twisted:

just a few birth dates...

Rafael Nadal Parera born June 3, 1986
Marcos Baghdatis born June 17, 1985
Gilles Simon born December 27, 1984
...

i wonder if nadal and Federer are even in the same century???? because according to you they are not in the same era! yeah right...

severe case of paranoia? time ports from Catalunia making the space\time balance to colapse? a case for scientists!
They're not in the same generation, 5 years difference is a lot in terms of a tennis career.

Gorecki
01-07-2009, 05:50 AM
They're not in the same generation, 5 years difference is a lot in terms of a tennis career.

either you are as primary thinking (not a compliment) as Zorro there or cant you see\didnt understand my point that the so called "young gun" Gilles Simon (please note the Commas) is older than the so called "Federer opponent" & "old fart\has been" Marcos Baghdatis, who happens to be one year older than NADAL!

and this is just an example of where you fail. the other is the number of times they met in events... lets see:

Year Championship Opponent in Final Score in Final
2005 French Open Mariano Puerta 67(6), 63, 61, 75
2006 French Open (2) Roger Federer 16, 61, 64, 76(4)
2007 French Open (3) Roger Federer 63, 46, 63, 64
2008 French Open (4) Roger Federer 61, 63, 60
2008 Wimbledon Roger Federer 64, 64, 67(5), 67(8), 97


[edit] Runner-ups (2)
Year Championship Opponent in Final Score in Final
2006 Wimbledon Roger Federer 60, 76(5), 67(2), 63
2007 Wimbledon (2) Roger Federer

so is it me or roughly 70% of NAdal's biggest wins\runner ups happened in the so called "Federer Era" while in his own era nadal only did the remaining 30%?
hows it going to be... do we get to mesure a generation by the number of times 2 players faced or by age... anyways... you fail at both.

this is yet another typical case of you Nadal fans wanting to have sun in the corn fields and rain in the letuces! doubles standards... my dear veronique!

zagor
01-07-2009, 06:05 AM
They're not in the same generation, 5 years difference is a lot in terms of a tennis career.

5 years isn't that much of a difference when you have Nadal who is an early bloomer and Fed who is a late bloomer.Nadal won his first slam in 2005 while Fed won his first in 2003,not that big of a difference IMO.

Not really, you fail by naming players that played their best in the Federer era.
Baghdatis and Roddick were irrelevant last year when the Nadal era started.

One year doesn't classify as an era,if Nadal stays at the top 2-3 next years or more then you'll have a point.

coloskier
01-07-2009, 08:25 AM
It is very simple. When you only have two players that have won slams in the past 3 years, the depth is not that great. If there truly was depth at the top, there would be 4 or 5 separate slam winners in the past 3 years.

ksbh
01-07-2009, 09:10 AM
What's up with these Sampras fans?

There is plenty of depth in the current era. The top 2 in the world just happen to be all-time greats with tons of talent, so they win most of the slams. Doesn't mean that the others aren't good.

There is a lack of 'variety' in styles of play but no lack of depth.

cknobman
01-07-2009, 09:27 AM
yes there is great depth

marc tressard
01-07-2009, 10:45 AM
A RUMINATION ON RIVALS AND FAUX DEPTH

The chief rivals of Roger Federer during his majestic 2004 to 2008 run are listed below for your scrutiny. You will observe that only a handful have managed two wins for every one loss.

Federer peaked in 2004-7 whereas Moya peaked in the late 90’s; Hewitt peaked in 2001-2002; Ferrero peaked in 2002-3; Haas peaked in 2002. When reviewing the basic stats, please recall that other greats of bygone eras faced other all time greats with regularity. Elite pros in the golden era barnstormed, facing each other exclusively and very often. Federer, through no fault of his own, has mostly faced lesser lights with the exception of his nemesis Nadal, against whom he has a losing record, and Roddick, his #2 opponent, whom he has owned, though few mistake Andy for Borg, Connors, McEnroe, Sampras, Becker, Lendl, Edberg, Laver, Rosewall, Gonzalez et. al.

Connors, as but one example, opposed in their prime, Borg, McEnroe and Lendl, to name a few. In Slam wins Jimbo defeated Borg twice, Lendl twice, an old Rosewall twice and McEnroe! Federer is in one sense lucky in that he is thriving in a moribund era of tennis wherein few tier I athletes compete. (I am a fan of the game, but will not play the Pollyanna.)

NOTABLES -- Top 20 listed by descending career wins as of 12/08

STAR W-L TITLES 2:1 W-L Ratio?
Federer 617-149 57 Yes
Moya 571-310 20 No
Hewitt 486-161 26 Yes
Roddick 459-148 26 Yes
Haas 428-234 11 No top 10 once
Safin 403-245 15 No 1.7:1 w/l ratio
Ferrero 386-205 11 No
Ljubicic 343-229 8 No not slam factor
Nadal 335-77 31 Yes
Robredo 331-203 7 No
Davydenko 318-213 14 No a set off Fed?
Gonzalez 310-168 10 No
Nalbandian 292-141 9 Yes
Blake 292-175 10 No hardly Iverson…
Ferrer 248-165 7 No (1.5:1 w/l ratio)
Stepanek 211-158 2 No (1.3:1 w/l ratio)
Djokovic 185-68 11 Yes just started
Berdych 181-116 4 No (zzzz)
Murray 155-65 8 Yes just started
Gasquet 139-91 5 No 1.5:1 w/l
Baghdatis 107-62 2 No

Yes, Federer did face legendary Agassi 11 times (8-3), winning the last 8. However, from 2004 (aged 34) to 2006, Andre was in decline and needed periodic 7” steroid filled needles plunged deep into his lower back muscle to mask crippling pain.

Federer and Hewitt are the same age. Until 2004, Federer was 2-7 vs. Hewitt, including two Davis Cup losses. From 2004 Fed is 12-0 vs. the fast fading Aussie #1.

Look, I believe Federer is the GOAT (Greatest Of All Time) and a supernal talent; after all, better trained athletes are now competing in every other sport (save boxing wherein weight requirements are stringent) and tennis is no exception. But tennis is now a trivial niche sport, a mere footnote vis a vis world sports of stature. I've read that Andy Roddick, clear USA #1 (in 2008 he beat Federer, Nadal and Djokovic ), earned prize money that would place him 86th on the PGA (golf) tour behind the likes of Cameron Beckman and Parker McClachlin (neither I’ve ever heard of). Save for slams and two Masters finals, the TV networks, and even ESPN2, have shut off the sport, even as they broadcast over 40 golf events.

In this context, a big fish in a shallow pond, Federer has reigned. His 5th U.S. Open title win was shoehorned into a 5 PM TV slot so as not to face Monday night football. Few watched. And in the UK, home of opponent Andy Murray, more watched England vs. Andora(!) in a soccer match, this despite Murray attempting to be the first male Brit in 70 years to win a slam.

STATS

Tony Trabert in 1955 was 106-7 with 18 titles and 3 Slams! However, when Trabert turned pro he was demolished initially by Pancho Gonzalez as was Laver when he turned pro initially. Records may mean less than meets the eye. Check out Roy Emerson’s 1964 stats: over 100 wins and 17 titles (it was a sham). Emerson was during his era likely a lower top 10 player, but not remotely an elite star capable of earning 12 bona fide Slam crowns. Most real experts relate that had pros been allowed to compete then, Emo might well have won a total of zero slams. The Aussie back then was a near trivial event. The best were then on the pro tour and not allowed to play Slams until the 1968 French! So Laver’s and especially Rosewall’s Slam titles are very deceptive. Rosewall was banned for 11 years and Pancho Gonzalez was banned for 16+ years!


EPILOGUE

On any one (1) Saturday in autumn south of the Mason Dixon Line, more fans attend live college football than attend all pro tennis tournaments in the U.S. all year. One day versus an entire year!

allcourter2008
01-07-2009, 11:06 AM
^^

I think "big fish in a shallow pond" is relative. Tennis is more international than ever, a good exampe is the rise Serbia as a tennis nation.
Just because America is done as a tennis nation doesn't mean fewer players or less skilled compete.

A great depth will always even out wins and losses between the players, when the depth is great, (almost) everyone can lose against everyone.
Form of the day decides matches more than it ever has in the past.

seffina
01-07-2009, 11:20 AM
What does depth have to do with how many people watch? The question isn't is the sport more popular in America now or earlier.

Dilettante
01-07-2009, 11:33 AM
1993: Sampras, Courier, Stich, Bruguera won 6 of 9 Masters series events.

Courier, Sampras, Bruguera held all of the slams, Stich winning "Masters Cup" equivalent.

They shared 11 out of 14 big titles.

1994: Sampras, Agassi, Medvedev, Bruguera won 7/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, Bruguera split the slams, Sampras winning the masters cup.

12/14 big titles.

1995: Sampras, Agassi, Muster, Medvedev won all 9/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, and Muster won the slams.

13/14 big titles.
------------------------------------

If I use your logic, there was no depth from 1993-1995, Sampras' best years arguably.

Also, '03-'04 was much more than two players if you want to use that argument 2005 would be the place, and even then Federer and Nadal won 11/14 big events that year with others taking some spotlight.

Before making claims to put entire generations down look at the facts.

Period, I'd say.

380pistol
01-07-2009, 12:13 PM
It's a matter of perspective somewhat.

Are we talking about depth and/or top level competition. Laver by his own admission said there was no depth in his time and he "didn't have to show up to a slam 'til the 2nd week".

But Laver could see and or all of Rosewall, Emerson, Newcombe, Ashe and Fraser during the 2nd week. While today the depth player 40, 50, 70 down the line are probably stronger than past eras, there's also been more parity. Hence, Blake, Davydenko, Ferrer, Robredo, Gonzalez have been top players recently until Djokovic and Murray joined Federer and Nadal.

So there is some truth, though some of the presented arguements don't do the best job in illustrating it. The ATP and ITF are also responsible for homginizing the surfaces, so you won't find as many surface specialists as you once did.

So there some truth, take it as you will.

bladepdb
01-07-2009, 12:23 PM
Next thread.

David L
01-07-2009, 12:29 PM
They're not in the same generation, 5 years difference is a lot in terms of a tennis career.
They are not strictly in the same generation, but they are in the same era and contemporary rivals, a bit like Graf and Seles.

David L
01-07-2009, 12:39 PM
It's the standard of play, not how many share the titles, that counts. Furthermore, prize money in relation to other sports is irrelevant. Again, it's the standard of play.

seffina
01-07-2009, 12:41 PM
We've already discussed the difference between parity and depth. But I guess ppl keep on missing the difference.

Djokovicfan4life
01-07-2009, 01:08 PM
And what have Tsonga, Del Potro, Simon,Gulbis done so far of any great value? NOTHING.

Tsonga won a Masters series title in Paris and made the finals of the Australian Open. Del Potro won four titles back to back. That, my friend, is some serious domination. Simon won Indianapolis, beat Federer twice, and made the finals in Madrid after a ridiculous upset over Nadal. Gulbis has still not found the consistency to win a big tournament yet, but he has certainly given plenty of players some big scares with his ferocious game. Roddick was completely helpless for a set and a half against him at the US Open before Gulbis' game went down the toilet. He held his own against Nadal in their Wimbledon match as well.

I suggest you actually follow tennis before posting this kind of garbage.

tacou
01-07-2009, 01:22 PM
and yet you say there is depthin this era? are you confused by any chance?

um no? OP said Tsonga hasn't done anything, I just listed his 08 achievements. I didn't say anything about the depth of today's game.

or are you the one whose confused? was that too much?

tacou
01-07-2009, 01:22 PM
oh weird the poster above me is talking about the same thing!

egn
01-07-2009, 01:25 PM
1993: Sampras, Courier, Stich, Bruguera won 6 of 9 Masters series events.

Courier, Sampras, Bruguera held all of the slams, Stich winning "Masters Cup" equivalent.

They shared 11 out of 14 big titles.

1994: Sampras, Agassi, Medvedev, Bruguera won 7/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, Bruguera split the slams, Sampras winning the masters cup.

12/14 big titles.

1995: Sampras, Agassi, Muster, Medvedev won all 9/9 Masters series events.

Sampras, Agassi, and Muster won the slams.

13/14 big titles.


Thank you so now we shall compare to Federer's dominace.. 04 05 06 07

2004: Federer (3 MS), Safin (2MS), Agassi (1MS), Roddick (1MS), Moya (1MS), Coria (1MS)

Fed wins 3 slams and masters cup and Gauido one

hmm is that enough depth..lets continue.

2005: Fed (4MS) Nadal (4MS) Berdych (1MS)
Fed wins 2 slams, Nadal one slam, Safin 1 slam and Nalbandian wins masters cup

that could be lopsided but COria and Ljubičić had two MS runner ups, Hewitt also had a MS runner up and Slam runner up same goes for Roddick and Agassi so two guys might have won it all but other guys were there..

2006: Fed (4MS) Nadal (2MS), Robredo (1MS), Roddick 1 (MS), Davydenko 1(MS)
Fed wins 3 slams and masters cup, Nadal wins 1 slam

note Nadal and Roddick both made a final, Davydenko made a semi and quarters.

2007: Nadal (3MS), Fed (2MS), Djokovic (2MS), Nalbandian (2MS),
Fed wins 3 slams and masters cup, Nadal wins 1 slam

note Djokovic made a slam final and so did Fernando Gonzalez along with a masters final and Nalby with 2 ms wins missed the masters cup, because 8 players had better seasons than a guy with 2 MS wins...shows a bit of depth.

So...really looking at that outside of slams there was depth Federer just handeled pressure better does not mean there was no depth, Federer just played extremely well in slam events.

fps
01-07-2009, 02:05 PM
yawn

so to summarise the 90s lovers' argument about the 00s
1) if one person wins everything it means there's no depth and the rest of the field sucks
2) if lots of people win there's no one particularly amazing person and everyone sucks

Morrissey
01-07-2009, 02:40 PM
yawn

so to summarise the 90s lovers' argument about the 00s
1) if one person wins everything it means there's no depth and the rest of the field sucks
2) if lots of people win there's no one particularly amazing person and everyone sucks

Its the chicken and the egg. It never ends and nobody wins. Personally I think its better now. Everyone always looks back at the past with candy coated goggles. Lol. I just made that up.

tacou
01-07-2009, 03:15 PM
haha yes I think the expression is rose-tinted glasses, but that's just as good.

seffina
01-07-2009, 03:17 PM
I like candy.




Not as much as pie.

Zaragoza
01-07-2009, 06:05 PM
:twisted:

How's it gonna be Zarzuela... are we in the Federer era or the Nadal. so all the achievments from 2004 onwards by Nadal are fiction. it only started in 2008? go figure and they never played each other....
:twisted:

just a few birth dates...

Rafael Nadal Parera born June 3, 1986
Marcos Baghdatis born June 17, 1985
Gilles Simon born December 27, 1984
...

i wonder if nadal and Federer are even in the same century???? because according to you they are not in the same era! yeah right...

severe case of paranoia? time ports from Catalunia making the space\time balance to colapse? a case for scientists!

If you can stop making dumb comments at least on this thread I will explain you what I meant. When Im referring to an era Im talking about the dominant player in that moment. Nadal achieved a lot before 2008 but it wasnt his era, it was the Federer era. The Nadal era started last summer when he became the best player in the world. Thats why I think the Baghdatis (do you know his ranking?), Lopez, and Roddick examples are poor, they were irrelevant in the big events last year. Federer, Djokovic, Murray,Tsonga...are really strong competition. Its not about birthdates, its about who are the top players in the world right now.

fps
01-08-2009, 12:34 AM
Its the chicken and the egg. It never ends and nobody wins. Personally I think its better now. Everyone always looks back at the past with candy coated goggles. Lol. I just made that up.

i'm borrowing that candy coated goggles line :)