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View Full Version : Nadal Clutch vs Sampras Clutch


kraggy
05-09-2009, 08:19 AM
Two of the greatest clutch players in recent times. However I feel that they are both clutch in a different way.


Sampras was an excellent front runner. Once he went up a break, it was pretty much game over for that set. His serving would go into GOD mode ( 15-0 ace, 30-0 ace, 40-0 strong serve overhead smash, game). I can't remember many occasions where Sampras has lost after being significantly ahead. Once Sampras god a whiff of blood, you were in BIGG trouble. However if you could get a lead over Sampras, then he became less clutch.


Nadal on the other hand is not necessarily an excellent front runner. Of course he is a good front runner, but not an excellent one like Sampras. If Nadal were 2 sets up vs a top player like Fed, Djo,Murray etc I would still give them a shot (except on clay). But where Nadal is tremendous is at coming from behind and playing every single point like it were the last point. You could be 5-0 30-0 up and if you played 10 % less than your best, Nadal would make you pay for it.

If i had to put my money on someone to close out a match , it would be Sampras. If i had to put my money on somebody to make a comeback from a bad position , it would be Nadal. That's why a Sampras vs Nadal match would be a great battle even at the mental level. Clutch vs Clutch at its best.

380pistol
05-09-2009, 08:36 AM
it's a stylistic thing. Nadal is in the mould of a Borg, where they are like video games. They want to gring you down, drain your energy bar of and then kill you off. Sampras was like a python or cobra. He lay in wait, biding his time, and the moment he sensed you twitch, show fear, or smelled blood he'd attack, but only for a short period, but that's all he needed. By then his venom had sunk in (he had the break) and he would let it kill you.

As far as frontrunning, the nod would go to Pete, based on the way he played, stylistically. Once he got the lead (or a break) he would focus or put as much energy into his return games, he didn't care. He knew you probably weren't gonna break him, and if he held serve there wasn't much you could do.

It's more of the way they appraoch matches. Nadal doesn't care about leading or trailing, or being up a break as much, cuz he's gonna try and grind you down. He may lose a set, but he feels the work he's putting in now (1st set), will get to you by the 3rd and 4th.

tennis-hero
05-17-2009, 03:10 PM
His clutch failed today

time to go to the mechanic me thinks

Sampras would never fold like Rafa did today