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View Full Version : Number one in 1977... finally the poll!


Argento full
05-19-2009, 10:46 AM
So...

what do you think?

Vilas or Borg?

Numbers against better player?

17 titles (incl. 2 GS) plus 50 matches streak ended with a spaghetti raquet vs. Wimby + 10 titles + probably greatest clay courter of all time (let`s see Nadal in the future) + 2-0 h2h (or 3-0 if we inlcuded the masters)....

For previous discussion see the following thread:
http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=134666&highlight=1977

Argento full
05-19-2009, 10:48 AM
See here too.

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=260465&page=2

urban
05-19-2009, 11:19 AM
You should add Connors. He was the ATP computer Nr.1 for the year.

CyBorg
05-19-2009, 11:23 AM
If I were being conservative, I'd rate the three as co-#1s for the year. Because each player had put together impressive accomplishments and based on these achievements it's perhaps quite close.

swedechris
05-19-2009, 11:28 AM
Borg...I am being partial i admit it, my ancestors were Swedes..
but the guy owned Vilas.

BTURNER
05-19-2009, 11:32 AM
When's its this close, looks breaks the ties. Borg had a way with the camera that made sweat irrelevant. Blondes get extra points

Jim Courier fan
05-19-2009, 11:37 AM
Vilas very close to Borg

jimbo333
05-19-2009, 04:29 PM
You should add Connors. He was the ATP computer Nr.1 for the year.

He was indeed:)

timnz
05-19-2009, 04:37 PM
I think that being number 1 should strictly be based on achievement. And Vilas' achievements outshone Borg that year. 3 Grand Slam finals - winning 2. (Yes, I know the Australian was light, but still an achievement).

Borg obviously was the better player - the head to head establishes that, but he just didn't have the results that Vilas had.

Vilas - 18 Tournament wins that year (16 ATP verified, 2 smaller events). Vilas' greatest win of course was the US Open over Connors. That is an equal win to Borg's winning Wimbledon (also over Connors). Hence looking at the rest of Borg's achievements vs the rest of Vilas' achievements - Vilas wins.

Have no idea how Connors got to be number 1 on the computer, as much of a Connors fan I am, his tournament wins were nothing like Vilas' during the year.

gj011
05-19-2009, 05:03 PM
Connors, he was year end #1.

jean pierre
05-21-2009, 01:26 AM
The n°1 is the guy who had the better results. Compare :

Grand Slam :
Vilas : 2 victories, 1 Final.
Borg : 1 victory.

All tournaments :
Vilas won 16
Borg won 11

Vilas won 46 matches consecutively (it's always the record)

It's absurd to think that Borg could be the n°1, and absurd to say "if he played Roland-Garros", "if he wasn't sick at the US Open" .... It's absurd to say always "if" ! Only the facts are important. Borg beated Vilas 3 times this year, but compare the results ! No doubt possible : Vilas is n°1 this year, and the ATP is ridiculous when he refuses to recognize the mistake and to say that Vilas was n°1.

ferim
05-21-2009, 07:55 AM
1.Vilas
2.Borg
3.Connors

CyBorg
05-21-2009, 09:09 AM
The n°1 is the guy who had the better results. Compare :

Grand Slam :
Vilas : 2 victories, 1 Final.
Borg : 1 victory.

All tournaments :
Vilas won 16
Borg won 11

Vilas won 46 matches consecutively (it's always the record)

It's absurd to think that Borg could be the n°1, and absurd to say "if he played Roland-Garros", "if he wasn't sick at the US Open" .... It's absurd to say always "if" ! Only the facts are important. Borg beated Vilas 3 times this year, but compare the results ! No doubt possible : Vilas is n°1 this year, and the ATP is ridiculous when he refuses to recognize the mistake and to say that Vilas was n°1.

Bogus arguments and it's already been explained why.

jean pierre
05-21-2009, 11:06 AM
Bogus arguments and it's already been explained why.

?????????
Winning 2 Grand Slams (+ 1 Final), 16 tournaments and 46 matches consecutively are bogus arguments ??????????

CyBorg
05-21-2009, 11:15 AM
?????????
Winning 2 Grand Slams (+ 1 Final), 16 tournaments and 46 matches consecutively are bogus arguments ??????????

Did you read the other thread?

Numbers are worthless without context.

flying24
05-21-2009, 06:59 PM
I dont think Connors deserved #1 in 1977 at all personally but he still should atleast be included on the poll with Borg and Vilas.

DMan
05-21-2009, 11:47 PM
I think that being number 1 should strictly be based on achievement. And Vilas' achievements outshone Borg that year. 3 Grand Slam finals - winning 2. (Yes, I know the Australian was light, but still an achievement).

Borg obviously was the better player - the head to head establishes that, but he just didn't have the results that Vilas had.

Vilas - 18 Tournament wins that year (16 ATP verified, 2 smaller events). Vilas' greatest win of course was the US Open over Connors. That is an equal win to Borg's winning Wimbledon (also over Connors). Hence looking at the rest of Borg's achievements vs the rest of Vilas' achievements - Vilas wins.

Have no idea how Connors got to be number 1 on the computer, as much of a Connors fan I am, his tournament wins were nothing like Vilas' during the year.

I was a Borg fan, and remember that at the time, I felt Borg deserved #1. But revisiting the year, I would rate Vilas as #1.

I don't understand how the ATP computer calculated rankings back then. It seemed weird that at the US Open, Vilas was seeded #4, behind Brian Gottfried. Vilas destroyed Gottfried in the French finals, and had an overall better record up to the Open. Vilas also finished #4 in 1976. So it shows you there were some definite quirks about the ATP ranking system back then.

I do think that based on overall record Vilas gets the nod over Borg, with Cononrs third. If you did count the Colgate Masters for the 1977 season - played in January 1978 - as part of the rankings season, even though Connors won the event, and Borg beat Vilas in the semis, I think Vilas epic RR win over Connors was in a sense a reason for him to clinch #1. The win was on a surface that favored Connors. and while Jimmy beat Bjorn in the finals, it was his only big win of the year. So it really only salvaged the year for Connors, not clinch #1 for Connors. and Borg's failure to win that event is another reason that I think Vilas gets the edge.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 06:21 AM
I do think that based on overall record Vilas gets the nod over Borg, with Cononrs third. If you did count the Colgate Masters for the 1977 season - played in January 1978 - as part of the rankings season, even though Connors won the event, and Borg beat Vilas in the semis, I think Vilas epic RR win over Connors was in a sense a reason for him to clinch #1. The win was on a surface that favored Connors. and while Jimmy beat Bjorn in the finals, it was his only big win of the year. So it really only salvaged the year for Connors, not clinch #1 for Connors. and Borg's failure to win that event is another reason that I think Vilas gets the edge.

However Vilas lost to Borg in the semi and thus finished behind Borg at the Masters.

Borg, I agree, would have had a better case had he won the Masters. But he definitely proved himself to be the better player on carpet - if not at the Masters, then definitely with his sterling fall stretch on the surface.

Connors deserves more credit for this year. He made the finals of both majors, unlike the other two players. He won the masters - clearly a top-four event. He was also victorious at Dallas, which was still a very respected event. No clay titles though - before the US Open, he lost to Orantes in Indianapolis on har-tru. So mostly carpet/hard - although a near-win in Wimbledon.

Borg's year is the most versatile, which is why I prefer it to the other three. Clay/Grass/Carpet - success on all three. The problem is that most folks evaluate his year based on contemporary standards, which I think is a huge fallacy and ignores context.

jean pierre
05-22-2009, 08:59 AM
Did you read the other thread?

Numbers are worthless without context.

Context is nothing. Only the facts are important. If we talk every year about the context, we can discuss for the n°1 every year all our life !

380pistol
05-22-2009, 09:01 AM
Vilas, end of story. If Borg played in the French Open things might have been different, but he didn't, so the Bull from Pampas is 1977 Player Of The Year.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 10:46 AM
Context is nothing. Only the facts are important. If we talk every year about the context, we can discuss for the n°1 every year all our life !

Facts:

- most dogs are hairy
- starbucks coffee cups are recyclable
- i'm typing out this post at work

How do these facts relate to one another? They don't, aside from the fact I just typed them up in a quasi-random manner.

Do you think Jan Kodes was a better clay courter than Rod Laver in 1971?

jean pierre
05-22-2009, 11:09 AM
Facts:

- most dogs are hairy
- starbucks coffee cups are recyclable
- i'm typing out this post at work

How do these facts relate to one another? They don't, aside from the fact I just typed them up in a quasi-random manner.

Do you think Jan Kodes was a better clay courter than Rod Laver in 1971?


Kodes won the French Open ! It's absurd to say "if Laver played the French this year, he won" ! Who knows ? So, today, you can say that Federer won a lot of times Wimbledon, but only because Sampras doesn't play anymore : you can say "if Sampras played, he won", but, excuse me, it's absurd.
And, finally, the question is not : was Kodes a better clay player than Laver in 1971 ? The question is : who won the French in 1971 ? And for 1977, the question is not : who was the best player in 1977 ? But : who has the best results in 1977 ? And it's Vilas. So Vilas is n°1.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 11:20 AM
Kodes won the French Open ! It's absurd to say "if Laver played the French this year, he won" ! Who knows ? So, today, you can say that Federer won a lot of times Wimbledon, but only because Sampras doesn't play anymore : you can say "if Sampras played, he won", but, excuse me, it's absurd.
And, finally, the question is not : was Kodes a better clay player than Laver in 1971 ? The question is : who won the French in 1971 ? And for 1977, the question is not : who was the best player in 1977 ? But : who has the best results in 1977 ? And it's Vilas. So Vilas is n°1.

Uh-huh. So Jan Kodes had better results on clay in 1971 because he won a depleted French Open, while Laver won a much deeper event in Rome?

You need to sit down and think this over a bit.

The Sampras analogy is funny. Stupid, but funny.

P.S. Speaking of Jan Kodes - he must have been a much better player than Stan Smith in 1973. I mean, he won Wimbledon, while Stan Smith (who didn't play in it) didn't. Thanks for clearing that up for everyone.

You're clearly not interested in context, therefore it doesn't matter who plays in an event and who doesn't. It doesn't matter how well attended the event is and whether there are circumstances that prevent players from participating in good faith. Throw all of that out the window. Just go with the bare facts.

Andres
05-22-2009, 01:30 PM
You're clearly not interested in context, therefore it doesn't matter who plays in an event and who doesn't. It doesn't matter how well attended the event is and whether there are circumstances that prevent players from participating in good faith. Throw all of that out the window. Just go with the bare facts.And since when an objective ranking cares about context? Ranking only care about those bare facts.

Rankings don't care about Borg being injured, banned, crippled or blonde. Rankings don't care about Connors being lefty, gay, hairy or bald. Rankings don't care about Vilas being short, long-haired, an awful singer or liking the carrousel.

Context means nothing. If Borg didn't play the FO, how does tha diminishes Vilas' achievements, ranking-wise?

Who was the best player that year? probably Borg. Who deserved the #1 the most? Most likely Vilas.

380pistol
05-22-2009, 01:40 PM
And since when an objective ranking cares about context? Ranking only care about those bare facts.

Rankings don't care about Borg being injured, banned, crippled or blonde. Rankings don't care about Connors being lefty, gay, hairy or bald. Rankings don't care about Vilas being short, long-haired, an awful singer or liking the carrousel.

Context means nothing. If Borg didn't play the FO, how does tha diminishes Vilas' achievements, ranking-wise?

Who was the best player that year? probably Borg. Who deserved the #1 the most? Most likely Vilas.

Agreed. As a Sampras fan it would have been 7 straight years at #1 if he didn;t miss Aus and US Open in 1999... but he did!!!!!! Best player Jan 1st, 1999 to Dec 31st, 1999, was Agassi. I'd still favour Pete 1999 over Dre 1999, but the player who had the best year was Agassi.

Same in 1977. From Jan 1st, 1977 to Dec 31st, 1977, Vilas was the best player. Would I favour Borg over him in a fair one?? Probably. Like I said before if Borg went to RG, thngs may have been different, but he didn't. So 1977 belongs to Vilas.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 02:11 PM
And since when an objective ranking cares about context? Ranking only care about those bare facts.

Rankings don't care about Borg being injured, banned, crippled or blonde. Rankings don't care about Connors being lefty, gay, hairy or bald. Rankings don't care about Vilas being short, long-haired, an awful singer or liking the carrousel.

Context means nothing. If Borg didn't play the FO, how does tha diminishes Vilas' achievements, ranking-wise?

Who was the best player that year? probably Borg. Who deserved the #1 the most? Most likely Vilas.

Rankings? What rankings? The ATP rankings? Nobody implied the necessity of a formula, nor make reference to an applied one.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 02:12 PM
Agreed. As a Sampras fan it would have been 7 straight years at #1 if he didn;t miss Aus and US Open in 1999... but he did!!!!!! Best player Jan 1st, 1999 to Dec 31st, 1999, was Agassi. I'd still favour Pete 1999 over Dre 1999, but the player who had the best year was Agassi.

Same in 1977. From Jan 1st, 1977 to Dec 31st, 1977, Vilas was the best player. Would I favour Borg over him in a fair one?? Probably. Like I said before if Borg went to RG, thngs may have been different, but he didn't. So 1977 belongs to Vilas.

Not the same thing and I've already explained why. Borg had a good reason. Sampras was injured.

mental midget
05-22-2009, 02:18 PM
maybe they should start inscribing some choice contextual details beside the winner's name on the trophy. however we will need a bigger trophy, and beyond that, who makes the decision as to which circumstances surrounding the victory are most relevant? factoring in the 'butterfly effect,' this is going to get complicated, gentlemen.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 02:29 PM
maybe they should start inscribing some choice contextual details beside the winner's name on the trophy. however we will need a bigger trophy, and beyond that, who makes the decision as to which circumstances surrounding the victory are most relevant? factoring in the 'butterfly effect,' this is going to get complicated, gentlemen.

We're not debating who the winner of the trophy is. I can't believe I have to explain such obvious things.

Was my Jan Kodes analogy not sufficient?

mental midget
05-22-2009, 02:52 PM
i can't believe you ended a sentence with a preposition! (facepalm!)

i'm naming my next boat the 'jan kodes analogy.'

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 03:55 PM
i can't believe you ended a sentence with a preposition! (facepalm!)

I believe I just got served.

mental midget
05-22-2009, 03:59 PM
I've been served.

i'm sorry, i was behaving like a cornered animal. let's return to the rule of law and not speak of it again.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 04:09 PM
i'm sorry, i was behaving like a cornered animal. let's return to the rule of law and not speak of it again.

Sorry, my slang was "incorrect". I went to the streets and was advised of the proper terminology.

As for your behaviour - deplorable.

grafselesfan
05-22-2009, 08:18 PM
I am going to remake this poll with Connors included as it just makes no sense to not have him atleast as an option.

380pistol
05-22-2009, 10:06 PM
Not the same thing and I've already explained why. Borg had a good reason. Sampras was injured.


Whatever the reason Vilas 1977 trumped Borg's. It has nothing to do with who's a better player, who would have done what, or if things would have been different. From January 1st, 1977 to December 31st, 1977 nobody put up better #'s than Vilas.

Like I said I'd probably take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one. But overall those 365 days, no one did it better than Vilas. Borg may not have had the chance to, granted, but Vilas did it.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 10:09 PM
Whatever the reason Vilas 1977 trumped Borg's. It has nothing to do with who's a better player, who would have done what, or if things would have been different. From January 1st, 1977 to December 31st, 1977 nobody put up better #'s than Vilas.

Like I said I'd probably take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one. But overall those 365 days, no one did it better than Vilas. Borg may not have had the chance to, granted, but Vilas did it.

Disagree, but Vilas had a fantastic year for sure.

380pistol
05-22-2009, 10:12 PM
Disagree, but Vilas had a fantastic year for sure.

Like your Koodes-Smith 1973 debate. Kodes was better than Smith at SW19 based on the fact he's better than someone who didn't show up. Champ > DNP everytime. Doesn't mean he's above Smith but he produced a better result.

1999 US Open: Pioline SF > Pete's DNP. Does that mean Pioline is above Pete?? But his result was better. Vilas' end result were better than Borg's that year. Not saying he's better or beats Borg. POY is who does the best over those 365 days, and in 1977 it was Vilas.

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 10:17 PM
Like your Koodes-Smith 1973 debate. Kodes was better than Smith at SW19 based on the fact he's better than someone who didn't show up. Champ > DNP everytime. Doesn't mean he's above Smith but he produced a better result.

A better result at a depleted tournament? It's silly logic. Do you even know why Smith didn't show up? You know, context? How much weight do you give to Johan Kriek's Australians?

1999 US Open: Pioline SF > Pete's DNP. Does that mean Pioline is above Pete?? But his result was better. Vilas' end result were better than Borg's that year. Not saying he's better or beats Borg. POY is who does the best over those 365 days, and in 1977 it was Vilas.

I've already explained this. Sampras was injured. When you're injured, you're not fit to play and therefore you're not better. Injuries are part of the game.

Borg was not injured and was better than Vilas. And results show it. You're giving the French Open undeserved weight based on a contemporary perception of its importance.

380pistol
05-22-2009, 10:37 PM
A better result at a depleted tournament? It's silly logic. Do you even know why Smith didn't show up? You know, context? How much weight do you give to Johan Kriek's Australians?



I've already explained this. Sampras was injured. When you're injured, you're not fit to play and therefore you're not better. Injuries are part of the game.

Borg was not injured and was better than Vilas. And results show it. You're giving the French Open undeserved weight based on a contemporary perception of its importance.

Stan Smith didn't show up out of protest. So how do you explain not showing up is better than a title?? Yes the tournament may have been depleted, and I clearly said if Borg had gone to RG, things may have been different, But if my mother was my aunt, my sister would be my cousins.

Borg was better than Vilas, I also said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one did I not??? But over those 365 days, Borg's results were not superior to Vilas. I mean are you conna tell me the Boxer Of The Year 1968 was Muhammed Ali?? Sure as hell wasn't from jail. If he was free, he probably would have been but he wasn't. Aren't we giving the champ undesreved wight seeing how they never beat the champ, he was stripped??

There's a difference between being "the best" and being "player of the year".

CyBorg
05-22-2009, 10:42 PM
Stan Smith didn't show up out of protest. So how do you explain not showing up is better than a title?? Yes the tournament may have been depleted, and I clearly said if Borg had gone to RG, things may have been different, But if my mother was my aunt, my sister would be my cousins.

Reality of the times. Smith protested and so did other players.

Borg's case is even more understandable. He didn't protest. He just chose WTT over RG. A reasonable choice done by others.

Borg was better than Vilas, I also said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one did I not??? But over those 365 days, Borg's results were not superior to Vilas. I mean are you conna tell me the Boxer Of The Year 1968 was Muhammed Ali?? Sure as hell wasn't from jail. If he was free, he probably would have been but he wasn't. Aren't we giving the champ undesreved wight seeing how they never beat the champ, he was stripped??

I don't know enough about Ali's year, but I can see from Borg's year that he was 22-0 on red clay, including two wins over Vilas, which leads me to conclude that he was superior to Vilas on that surface.

There's a difference between being "the best" and being "player of the year".

I don't see how Vilas is either.

380pistol
05-23-2009, 12:43 AM
Reality of the times. Smith protested and so did other players.

Borg's case is even more understandable. He didn't protest. He just chose WTT over RG. A reasonable choice done by others.



I don't know enough about Ali's year, but I can see from Borg's year that he was 22-0 on red clay, including two wins over Vilas, which leads me to conclude that he was superior to Vilas on that surface.



I don't see how Vilas is either.

Again your missing the point. I don't begrudge Borg for choosing WTT over the ATP, and I never once said Borg would not have. The fact is he didn't not that he couldn't. Ali could have beaten any boxer in in 1968, he was the best. But Boxer/Player Of The Year means going out and doing it. Borg didn't. Not saying he couldn't, he just didn't, for whatever reason.

Tennisfan!
05-23-2009, 03:49 AM
vilas 10 char

hoodjem
05-23-2009, 06:34 AM
Rankings don't care about Borg being injured, banned, crippled or blonde. Rankings don't care about Connors being lefty, gay, hairy or bald.

Wow, I didn't know Connors was gay and bald. Thanks!

krosero
05-23-2009, 07:01 AM
Also don't ignore the fact that Vilas purposefully avoided non-clay events all year. There's a reason why the current ATP rules are set up to prevent players from doing this.

Sure, majors count but these things aren't fixed. Today majors are "sacred", because we can expect everyone to attend them. And when players do not then it is never for a good reason. In the 1970s, there were circumstances (such as WTT) that prevented players from showing up at majors. You probably think Jan Kodes was a better player than Rod Laver in 1970 because he won a major and Laver did not?

Fast forward to 2009 and there's no reasonable excuse for a player missing a major. The tour is extremely standardized and has been precisely so for years. There's no WTT in the way. No parallel tours. Very clear cut. Herein we can apply a simple "quantitative" formula. CyBorg, I'm quoting these posts of yours from another thread because they've highlighted some key differences between the early Open Era and today. Just as an amateur student of history (one of my favorite subjects), there are a few things that you're doing which I really appreciate: 1) Context is everything; 2) don't judge the past by today's standards; 3) don't reduce everything to numbers.

Since the tour has become standardized, everything now revolves around major counts. With Federer and Sampras so close to each other in their major titles, there's even more emphasis on it (there seems to be a hot fever around anything to do with Federer, Sampras, and major counts). And going forward, so long as the tour remains as it is today, I see no problem with the emphasis on majors. Going forward. But judging 1971 or 1977, or any other past year, you have no choice but to leave aside our thinking today and ask what people were thinking then. I've read your posts on 1977 before but I'm just beginning to understand your emphasis on that point.

Often I see the whole question of 1977 reduced to the simple argument that Borg did not show up, while Vilas did. Usually that refers to the French Open. And today that makes sense: if you miss RG today, you've missed the premier claycourt event of the year, no questions asked, nothing more to be said. In essence you've avoided the biggest test.

I know there's a case to be made that the Masters series events are harder to win; but seriously, missing RG is too much; if you duck a major today, or can't make it because of injury, you're missing too much.

Yet you point out that Vilas avoided non-clay events in 1977, which immediately puts a twist on the argument that Vilas "showed up" and proved himself #1 while Borg "did not show up" and avoided the big competition.

(I think you've said before that Vilas also avoided Borg when he could during that season? or during his record streak?)

This is not to say that Borg is #1 for the year. At the moment actually, without carefully studying the year, I'd tend to lean toward co-#1's. I'm not sure why polls never include that option. We have a bit of a "king of the hill" mentality (a GOAT mentality; every post seems to be a defense of a particular player and nothing more; very few posters seem interested in any other issues, though at least this Former Players forum has a greater share of the interesting posters). But if we drop the need to name one player as king over the roost, it's possible to think of 1977 as a year in which all the top players were missing something important in their accomplishments, which means that they might have to share the POY honors.

1977 aside, I appreciate a lot of what you're emphasizing. Like you I'm a Borg fan, but in everything I've studied I've always been taught that context is everything, that nothing can be boiled down to numbers, and that you can't do history by judging the past through today's lenses. Those are just attitudes I've held about far more important things than tennis and I'm glad to run across someone who operates the same way.

But I'm not optimistic about how 1977 will be studied. Now that the tour is standardized a lot of the early Open Era may be forgotten -- whatever part does not resemble today's.

CyBorg
05-23-2009, 10:37 AM
Again your missing the point. I don't begrudge Borg for choosing WTT over the ATP, and I never once said Borg would not have. The fact is he didn't not that he couldn't. Ali could have beaten any boxer in in 1968, he was the best. But Boxer/Player Of The Year means going out and doing it. Borg didn't. Not saying he couldn't, he just didn't, for whatever reason.

*sigh* Borg went out and "did it" at the WTT. Geez.

CyBorg
05-23-2009, 10:40 AM
CyBorg, I'm quoting these posts of yours from another thread because they've highlighted some key differences between the early Open Era and today. Just as an amateur student of history (one of my favorite subjects), there are a few things that you're doing which I really appreciate: 1) Context is everything; 2) don't judge the past by today's standards; 3) don't reduce everything to numbers.

Since the tour has become standardized, everything now revolves around major counts. With Federer and Sampras so close to each other in their major titles, there's even more emphasis on it (there seems to be a hot fever around anything to do with Federer, Sampras, and major counts). And going forward, so long as the tour remains as it is today, I see no problem with the emphasis on majors. Going forward. But judging 1971 or 1977, or any other past year, you have no choice but to leave aside our thinking today and ask what people were thinking then. I've read your posts on 1977 before but I'm just beginning to understand your emphasis on that point.

Often I see the whole question of 1977 reduced to the simple argument that Borg did not show up, while Vilas did. Usually that refers to the French Open. And today that makes sense: if you miss RG today, you've missed the premier claycourt event of the year, no questions asked, nothing more to be said. In essence you've avoided the biggest test.

I know there's a case to be made that the Masters series events are harder to win; but seriously, missing RG is too much; if you duck a major today, or can't make it because of injury, you're missing too much.

Yet you point out that Vilas avoided non-clay events in 1977, which immediately puts a twist on the argument that Vilas "showed up" and proved himself #1 while Borg "did not show up" and avoided the big competition.

(I think you've said before that Vilas also avoided Borg when he could during that season? or during his record streak?)

This is not to say that Borg is #1 for the year. At the moment actually, without carefully studying the year, I'd tend to lean toward co-#1's. I'm not sure why polls never include that option. We have a bit of a "king of the hill" mentality (a GOAT mentality; every post seems to be a defense of a particular player and nothing more; very few posters seem interested in any other issues, though at least this Former Players forum has a greater share of the interesting posters). But if we drop the need to name one player as king over the roost, it's possible to think of 1977 as a year in which all the top players were missing something important in their accomplishments, which means that they might have to share the POY honors.

1977 aside, I appreciate a lot of what you're emphasizing. Like you I'm a Borg fan, but in everything I've studied I've always been taught that context is everything, that nothing can be boiled down to numbers, and that you can't do history by judging the past through today's lenses. Those are just attitudes I've held about far more important things than tennis and I'm glad to run across someone who operates the same way.

But I'm not optimistic about how 1977 will be studied. Now that the tour is standardized a lot of the early Open Era may be forgotten -- whatever part does not resemble today's.

Excellent post and the insight is much appreciated.

I'm actually very open to regarding these guys (perhaps even with Connors) as co-#1s. All three have some evident gaps to their record in 1977.

thalivest
05-23-2009, 10:48 AM
Tennis was completely differenct back even in the 70s. The 3 slams were not always the 4 biggest events, especialy the Australian and French Opens (well the Australian nearly every year).

380pistol
05-23-2009, 10:49 AM
*sigh* Borg went out and "did it" at the WTT. Geez.

This is first real debateable point you've made to me. This is something I can see. Now the question beomes.... is how much wieght is given to WTT tournaments, and how much to ATP?? Which holds more weight??

Also did Borg do the equivalent in WTT that he would have needed to do to have done on the ATP to be player of the year?? Everybody, I summize, will have their own take on what's what.

CyBorg
05-23-2009, 10:59 AM
This is first real debateable point you've made to me. This is something I can see. Now the question beomes.... is how much wieght is given to WTT tournaments, and how much to ATP?? Which holds more weight??

Also did Borg do the equivalent in WTT that he would have needed to do to have done on the ATP to be player of the year?? Everybody, I summize, will have their own take on what's what.

I can tell you which one payed better. WTT was obviously respected and important at the time. And RG was evidently less important as a result.

Also why ignore the Monte Carlo and Nice results?

380pistol
05-23-2009, 11:18 AM
I can tell you which one payed better. WTT was obviously respected and important at the time. And RG was evidently less important as a result.

Also why ignore the Monte Carlo and Nice results?

I didn't ignore them. Vilas put up some absolutely disgusting #'s in 1977. Now like I've said time and time again, which you seem to ignore, if Borg hadn't chosen WTT, things quite possibly would have been different. You keep harping on with Borg this, and Borg that, why?? How many times have I said I would more than likely take Borg 1977 over Vlas 1977 in fair one. Do you what that means???

As to who had the better year in 1977, the stats show Vilas. the results show Vilas. Now if Borg's accomplishments on the WTT match up or superceed Vilas' on the ATP, that I can consider it. If Vilas ATP #'s (or ATP in general) don't stack up, all fall short to what the WTT, I would definitely consider that.

That's why I said the "WTT vs ATP" point was something that holds weight and needs to be looked at. But then again too many people will have too many discrepancies with their views. You say this, but somebody will probaly say that. That's why I said that point you made needs be looked at.

jimbo333
05-23-2009, 11:23 AM
Agreed. As a Sampras fan it would have been 7 straight years at #1 if he didn;t miss Aus and US Open in 1999... but he did!!!!!! Best player Jan 1st, 1999 to Dec 31st, 1999, was Agassi. I'd still favour Pete 1999 over Dre 1999, but the player who had the best year was Agassi.

Don't start that again mate:)

Although I would say you may be winning this argument Re. Borg vs Vilas, it really helps that you are not biased about either of these 2 players:)

And don't forget Connors ended the year as No1 in 77, and I think he was the best player that year (although as you know I'm biased):)

CyBorg
05-23-2009, 12:15 PM
I didn't ignore them. Vilas put up some absolutely disgusting #'s in 1977. Now like I've said time and time again, which you seem to ignore, if Borg hadn't chosen WTT, things quite possibly would have been different.

I'm not talking about hypotheticals - I'm making a very clear statement. Borg was a better player on red clay courts than Vilas and there's plenty of evidence for this. You are placing RG on a pedestal here and then cooking up an unnecessary hypothetical.

You keep harping on with Borg this, and Borg that, why?? How many times have I said I would more than likely take Borg 1977 over Vlas 1977 in fair one. Do you what that means???

You're making a distinction between better and more accomplished. The latter by you is unconvincing.

As to who had the better year in 1977, the stats show Vilas. the results show Vilas. Now if Borg's accomplishments on the WTT match up or superceed Vilas' on the ATP, that I can consider it. If Vilas ATP #'s (or ATP in general) don't stack up, all fall short to what the WTT, I would definitely consider that.

Reductive. This isn't RG v WTT. You should be looking at the year holistically rather than reducing it to such simple abstraction. I've already referred to years like 1971 to show why Jan Kodes was not the best red clay player. What was Rod Laver doing at the time Kodes was winning RG? I don't know. I do know that Laver won a much deeper event in Rome.

That's why I said the "WTT vs ATP" point was something that holds weight and needs to be looked at. But then again too many people will have too many discrepancies with their views. You say this, but somebody will probaly say that. That's why I said that point you made needs be looked at.

Base oversimplification. At no point did I suggest that the two had to be compared. When you reduce the dynamic to two polar elements, you ignore all of the remaining variables.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2009, 09:53 PM
I've already referred to years like 1971 to show why Jan Kodes was not the best red clay player. What was Rod Laver doing at the time Kodes was winning RG? I don't know.

Laver wasn't allowed to enter RG in '71(WCT players were banned from several majors in '71 & '72)

People really need to stop this 'major counting' thing(unless they only start around '85). the 'Open Era' was not the starting point of all the majors having great fields or something.

You got more $$ for winning the Pepsi Grand Slam(a 4 player event) in 1978 than for winning ALL FOUR majors that year. No wonder Borg & so many top players skipped the French & Australian, etc. Where was the money in winning those events? And let's not pretend all of today's players just play all the majors for the 'prestige.' You get 2 mill for winnning a major. I wonder what would happen if all the masters series offered twice the prize money of the majors(this was what the 70s was like, many events offering soo much more prize money than the majors. what's wrong with this picture?? it would be unthinkable for Madrid to offer more prize money than RG today - and there's an ATP that has rules on this stuff. there was no organization in pro tennis back then, it was sort of a free for all)

I'd love to see how hard Fed & Co would play if someone in the middle east put together an exo with a 10 mill first prize. And they played it the week before the French. Anyone starting to get why Borg & Evert passed on the French to play some good old world team tennis? I've read articles from this time that predict that the '4 majors' may not exist for much longer, since team tennis, exo's, etc were posing such a big threat to their existence. We're lucky the majors came to their senses & started doubling, tripling the amount of prize money they offered...

urban
05-23-2009, 10:52 PM
I agree with the posters, who put emphasis on the context of sheer numbers (though i still think, that Vilas was Nr. 1 in 1977). In the 1970s there was no standardized mens circuit controlled by the ATP and to a lesser extent by the ITF, as it exists today. Up to 5 or 6 managing and promoting groups struggeld fiercely for control of the game. It included the WCT by Lamar Hunt with its strong circuit of the 32 or 64 best pros players (originally it merged out of the recruits of the NTL and WCT groups), the ITF with its own Grand Prix and DC (going pro only in 1973), the small Riordan circuit, mainly built around Connors and Nastase, the new founded ATP union with some own tournaments at Palm Springs and Tucson, the US city team tour WTT and so on. The conflict situation lead to essentially separate circuits and a string of bannings and boycotts of the majors, including USO in 1971, Wim in 72 and 73, French almost every year since 1970 ( the AO became more and more isolated). Overall, the scheduling was a mess. For some years its almost impossible to make a significant ranking. In 1972 for instance, only one or two tournaments were played by all pros, WCT and ITF. The rankings are pure speculation. Some players like Nastase and Connors took advantage of playing easier circuits and avoiding the strong WCT tour, so being able to get fresh for the majors, primarily Wim and USO. The French experienced a renaissance under the tutelage of Philipp Chatrier since the late 70s.

380pistol
05-23-2009, 10:57 PM
I'm not talking about hypotheticals - I'm making a very clear statement. Borg was a better player on red clay courts than Vilas and there's plenty of evidence for this. You are placing RG on a pedestal here and then cooking up an unnecessary hypothetical.



You're making a distinction between better and more accomplished. The latter by you is unconvincing.



Reductive. This isn't RG v WTT. You should be looking at the year holistically rather than reducing it to such simple abstraction. I've already referred to years like 1971 to show why Jan Kodes was not the best red clay player. What was Rod Laver doing at the time Kodes was winning RG? I don't know. I do know that Laver won a much deeper event in Rome.



Base oversimplification. At no point did I suggest that the two had to be compared. When you reduce the dynamic to two polar elements, you ignore all of the remaining variables.

Wow!! We're just going around in cirlces. You mentioned Jan Kodes winning Wimbledon when Stan Smith boycotted. If Smith doesn't win a slam that year then it can be said Kodes had a better year. Yes there are circumstances surrounding it, but his year was better. That doesn't necessarily equate better player.

For as long as, well someone will say the French Open > Rome. Now if Laver won Rome with a deeper field, then he did. Would Laver have taken out Kodes on, more than likely. But for whatever reason, he didn't win what was generally considered the greatest clay tournament.


You say "Borg was a better player on red clay courts than Vilas and there's plenty of evidence for this."... at what point did I say he wasn't?? How many times have I said I would take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977??? How many?? Really??

That's why I ried to differentiate "better player" and "better year".
The French is considered the biggest claycourt tourney by many. Vilas won that and the US Open. Yes there are circumstances why Borg didn't go to the French, but he didn't. If Borg not going and depleted field is held against Vilas, then whatever Borg did "on the court", elsewhere has to stack up to what Vilas did. If not that's like telling me Ali had the best year or was even the best boxer in 1968. Sure as hell wasn't sitting in a 6 by 9. Now if he wasn't imprisoned, he probably is the best boxer in 1968, but he was.

If the bottom half of this years French Open plays on their scheduled day, and someone says "Federer or Djokovic was the best claycourter at RG today", what are you gonna do?? Argue for Nadal?? He's in the top half and didn't play. Well Nadal this... and Nadal that...., but until he's in the bottom half he can't be the best claycourter "that day", when the botttom half played.

flying24
05-23-2009, 11:05 PM
380pistol what is essentialy being said is back then the 4 grand slams were not undisputably the most important events the way they are today. They were certainly not the "must go" they are today, and players participation was dependent on circumstances in place at a given time.

CyBorg
05-23-2009, 11:08 PM
Wow!! We're just going around in cirlces. You mentioned Jan Kodes winning Wimbledon when Stan Smith boycotted. If Smith doesn't win a slam that year then it can be said Kodes had a better year. Yes there are circumstances surrounding it, but his year was better. That doesn't necessarily equate better player.

For as long as, well someone will say the French Open > Rome. Now if Laver won Rome with a deeper field, then he did. Would Laver have taken out Kodes on, more than likely. But for whatever reason, he didn't win what was generally considered the greatest clay tournament.

You say "Borg was a better player on red clay courts than Vilas and there's plenty of evidence for this."... at what point did I say he wasn't?? How many times have I said I would take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977??? How many?? Really??

That's why I ried to differentiate "better player" and "better year".
The French is considered the biggest claycourt tourney by many. Vilas won that and the US Open. Yes there are circumstances why Borg didn't go to the French, but he didn't. If Borg not going and depleted field is held against Vilas, then whatever Borg did "on the court", elsewhere has to stack up to what Vilas did. If not that's like telling me Ali had the best year or was even the best boxer in 1968. Sure as hell wasn't sitting in a 6 by 9. Now if he wasn't imprisoned, he probably is the best boxer in 1968, but he was.

If the bottom half of this years French Open plays on their scheduled day, and someone says "Federer or Djokovic was the best claycourter at RG today", what are you gonna do?? Argue for Nadal?? He's in the top half and didn't play. Well Nadal this... and Nadal that...., but until he's in the bottom half he can't be the best claycourter "that day", when the botttom half played.

I think Urban and Moose Malloy have said all that needs to be said. Your post is mostly nonsensical jibber-jabber.

The better player is the one who has the better year. The only possible exception could come in cases of injury, something that does not apply to this case. Your attempt to separate the two is a red herring; either intentional or out of ignorance.

grafselesfan
05-23-2009, 11:41 PM
The better player is the one who has the better year.

Not neccessarily. I never once considered Sanchez Vicario a better player than Steffi Graf, but in 1994 I would concede she had the better year and should have been the one ranked #1 for the year even though the computer ranked Graf #1 (and I am an uber Graf fan).

I certainly did not consider Agassi a better player than Sampras in 1999 because of his general head to head failure and the circumstances around the U.S Open outcome. However I would concede Agassi had the better year and deserved the #1 ranking for the year over Sampras, even though he did not convince me he was the better player at the time.

380pistol
05-23-2009, 11:50 PM
I think Urban and Moose Malloy have said all that needs to be said. Your post is mostly nonsensical jibber-jabber.

The better player is the one who has the better year. The only possible exception could come in cases of injury, something that does not apply to this case. Your attempt to separate the two is a red herring; either intentional or out of ignorance.


Ok who was the better player in 1999 Sampras or Agassi, and who had the better year?? Alrighty then.

I've asked a simple question "Was Ali the best boxer in 1968"??? Which you've faile to answer, and we know why don't we??

380pistol
05-23-2009, 11:55 PM
380pistol what is essentialy being said is back then the 4 grand slams were not undisputably the most important events the way they are today. They were certainly not the "must go" they are today, and players participation was dependent on circumstances in place at a given time.

I even said that was a valid point when cyBorg brought it up, scroll back. All I said was if the "4 slams" were not the most important at that time, one would have to show that what Borg did in tourney's then, trumped or quated the slams, or the ones Vilas put his work in.

That's like me saying you won ABC, but I'm better cuz I won DEF, and I chose not to play ABC. Then DEF would have to equate or surpass ABC. I never said it didn't, I said it would have to.

grafselesfan
05-23-2009, 11:59 PM
I think the 1999 example is the ultimate one of all to use here that best player and best year dont go hand in hand always. Yes tennis was different then of course. However the player who has the best year and the player who was really the best player dont always go hand in hand. Would anyone really question Agassi was the deserved and true #1 of 1999? Yet would anyone question Sampras was the best player in the world at the end of 1999? The latter was sealed pretty much in the year end final between the two titans that year, but the former was sealed pretty much at the U.S Open that year. It was different from 1995 where the two were sealed simatenously in that pivotal U.S Open final between them.

CyBorg
05-24-2009, 12:26 AM
Not neccessarily. I never once considered Sanchez Vicario a better player than Steffi Graf, but in 1994 I would concede she had the better year and should have been the one ranked #1 for the year even though the computer ranked Graf #1 (and I am an uber Graf fan).

I certainly did not consider Agassi a better player than Sampras in 1999 because of his general head to head failure and the circumstances around the U.S Open outcome. However I would concede Agassi had the better year and deserved the #1 ranking for the year over Sampras, even though he did not convince me he was the better player at the time.

The Agassi and Sampras thing is complicated by the injury, something that I'd mentioned in that post if you'd read it.

There is no injury involved in the Vilas/Borg situation.

Regardless of the injury to Sampras, one can still argue that Sampras had better results than Agassi in 1999. Sampras bettered Agassi on grass and on carpet and had more convincing pre-US Open results on hardcourts.

If not, then one can definitely say very convincingly that they were co-#1s for that year.

CyBorg
05-24-2009, 12:28 AM
Ok who was the better player in 1999 Sampras or Agassi, and who had the better year?? Alrighty then.

I've asked a simple question "Was Ali the best boxer in 1968"??? Which you've faile to answer, and we know why don't we??

I don't follow boxing. It's not a simple question, because I'm not privy to the context of that year. I therefore won't bother.

Agassi/Sampras involves an injury, which creates a possible shift between better and more accomplished. That's the only reason the two may not be one and the same.

CyBorg
05-24-2009, 12:50 AM
Some other remarks about Vilas's clay court results.

- of his red clay wins, only Roland Garros convinces as a big one. The rest are all small tournaments.

- he loses to Borg in Nice in the final, and Monte Carlo in the semifinal.

- Borg signs up for WTT, Vilas proceeds to win a minor event in Buenos Aires and then performs poorly in Hamburg and Rome - the events Borg does not play in; those that definitely trump most of the ones Vilas shows up in over the course of the year.

- Vilas's losses in those events are to Buster Mottram (!?) and Zeljko Franulovic (you may know him as the tournament director of the Monte Carlo Masters) .. eek.

- Vilas then wins a Borg-less Roland Garros .. still impressive; the draw is pretty solid; he is clearly the second best clay courter on that alone .. defeats Fibak and Ramirez along the way

- one red clay title in the summer in Kitzbuhel (beat an old Kodes) and then a slew of little ones in the fall - Paris (d Roger-Vasselin), Tehran (d Dibbs), Bogota (d Higueras), Santiago and Buenos Aires (d Dibbs). Loses in Aix-de-Provence to Nastase.

Borg conversely

- wins Monte Carlo and Nice - beats Vilas in both; then plays in Madrid and Barcelona in the fall - wins both. Complete record 22-0.

- the shocker is that after losing to Borg in both Nice and MC, Vilas decides to skip both Madrid and Barcelona in the fall. I know - I can't believe it either.

Vilas basically plays a whole load more matches on the surface, which is so reminiscent of Muster's high volume clay court play in 1995 (except that Muster was the best player on clay that year, as proven by the big wins).

I'm just wondering how it is that Vilas backers are so easily able to overlook the losses to Mottram and Franulovic in Hamburg and Rome. Fairly well-known events. Mediocre players.

This guy has a better record than Borg on red clay? Get real.

The whole year smells of creative scheduling and a particular kind of opportunism. I can't really blame Vilas for it, but I just can't help but laugh at those who ignore that this is the case.

The one way I think Borg's record here would not be better, or more convincing is if he played very little on red clay. However 22 matches is actually quite comparable to what many guys would play today and in fact in 1978 Borg played 23 matches on red clay. Enough for most I'm sure.

Borgforever
05-24-2009, 02:38 AM
Perfect post and arguments CyB!

I can't believe anyone thinks Vilas won bigger titles and had greater victories in 1977.

If one holds just numbers as important and nothing else (regarding Vilas as lone year end No. 1 in 1977) that principle suggests that since Newk won Wimby 1967 he must be No. 1 that year. Laver and Rosewall didn't play the regular "official" Wimby tourney. Tough luck. They don't count as factors. There are no ifs or buts. Therefore Laver isn't No. 1 on the planet any longer according to such reasoning. Was Drobny, Wimby-winner 1954, a better player than Pancho that year (with finer wins against better players than Gonzales) and deserved to be ranked as year end No. 1 1954?

I say no... Way...

I also fully agree with krosero and Moose.

There's also nothing -- zip -- zero - to suggest that Vilas was gaining on Borg or Connors. He hadn't beat Björn for two years getting steamrolled always, not because he was scared and almost choked like Jimbo against Ilie and Björn against Jimbo (up until the summer 1976 which is where I pinpoint when Connors complete dominance took a sharp nosedive against The Ice Man), just the simple fact that Borg was soooo much better at doing the the things Guillermo did that he usually didn't get more than three-four games a match.

It would take three more years until Vilas beat Borg, only once -- and then in a minor tourney against a Borg who didn't care one bit how that match ended because he was supposed to make it to an important flight...

Here we are talking about a guy, Guillermo, who never ever had the slightest upper hand on Borg -- and he's supposed to be named best male year-end player for 1977 -- above Borg -- that's just silly. Nuts.

To make an informed judgement-call on year end No. 1-status I need more than one H2H stat, actually the top ten and the story behind any losses to create an informed view. Borg has the better H2H than either Vilas and Connors against the rest of the top ten -- plus that he comfortably leads the H2H-matchups against Jimbo and Guillermo -- all in 1977...

Fascinating debate though -- in a very strange way...

pc1
05-24-2009, 04:23 AM
Borgforever and Cyborg,

It is an interesting debate. Borg won Wimbledon over Gonnors, in the toughest field, Borg was as usual great on clay. Borg won a ton of tournaments and probably overall had the best average level of play for the year. There is no doubt Borg was the best player in the world. Borg won hard court, carpet, clay and grass tournaments. A very impressive well balance performance showing his strength and versatility.

Vilas as everybody here knows won a ton of minor tournaments, won the French Open and the U.S. Open beating Jimmy Connors in the final. Would Vilas have done as well if he played a more balance schedule? I don't think he would have done as well. He clearly would have had a lot more losses that would look bad on his record. For example on grass Vilas won a total of three matches in three tournaments leading up to and including Wimbledon. However he did reach the finals of the Australian losing to Tanner in straight sets. The majority of Vilas' achievements for the year was on clay but he did win a couple of hard court and indoor tournaments.

I've actually hedged back and forth over the years on this. The thing that is very clear to me however is that Vilas, while he was a bit better than he was in 1976 really was a similar player to what he was in 1976 and in 1975, just more confident which allowed him to do better in matches against players like Connors but not Borg. Vilas had one style of play for all surfaces and that style was best suited for clay.

Borg is a different story. He was clearly a better player than he was the previous year and much better than he was in 1975 when he still was able to defeat Vilas in straight sets in the French Open final. In 1977 he could play any style of tennis and beat you with it. On grass he could serve and volley, on clay he could grind it out and wear you down, on hard court he could even play the power baseline game if needed.

So I would go with Borg. He won Wimbledon, the most important tournament. He defeated Vilas and Connors head to head and he had the best winning percentage and best balanced record on the tour.

The one thing I cannot understand is how anyone can pick Connors as number one for 1977. Can the people who picked Connors explain their reasoning to me?

Tennisfan!
05-24-2009, 05:59 AM
Some other remarks about Vilas's clay court results.

- of his red clay wins, only Roland Garros convinces as a big one. The rest are all small tournaments.

- he loses to Borg in Nice in the final, and Monte Carlo in the semifinal.

- Borg signs up for WTT, Vilas proceeds to win a minor event in Buenos Aires and then performs poorly in Hamburg and Rome - the events Borg does not play in; those that definitely trump most of the ones Vilas shows up in over the course of the year.

- Vilas's losses in those events are to Buster Mottram (!?) and Zeljko Franulovic (you may know him as the tournament director of the Monte Carlo Masters) .. eek.

- Vilas then wins a Borg-less Roland Garros .. still impressive; the draw is pretty solid; he is clearly the second best clay courter on that alone .. defeats Fibak and Ramirez along the way

- one red clay title in the summer in Kitzbuhel (beat an old Kodes) and then a slew of little ones in the fall - Paris (d Roger-Vasselin), Tehran (d Dibbs), Bogota (d Higueras), Santiago and Buenos Aires (d Dibbs). Loses in Aix-de-Provence to Nastase.

Borg conversely

- wins Monte Carlo and Nice - beats Vilas in both; then plays in Madrid and Barcelona in the fall - wins both. Complete record 22-0.

- the shocker is that after losing to Borg in both Nice and MC, Vilas decides to skip both Madrid and Barcelona in the fall. I know - I can't believe it either.

Vilas basically plays a whole load more matches on the surface, which is so reminiscent of Muster's high volume clay court play in 1995 (except that Muster was the best player on clay that year, as proven by the big wins).

I'm just wondering how it is that Vilas backers are so easily able to overlook the losses to Mottram and Franulovic in Hamburg and Rome. Fairly well-known events. Mediocre players.

This guy has a better record than Borg on red clay? Get real.

The whole year smells of creative scheduling and a particular kind of opportunism. I can't really blame Vilas for it, but I just can't help but laugh at those who ignore that this is the case.

The one way I think Borg's record here would not be better, or more convincing is if he played very little on red clay. However 22 matches is actually quite comparable to what many guys would play today and in fact in 1978 Borg played 23 matches on red clay. Enough for most I'm sure.

Borg signs with WTT: Borg's mistake.
Vilas play many matches, but... HE WON IT!!!
Zelko Franulovic was a good clay court player, say what you want about him.
Sarcasm about RG 77, yeah whatever.
Lost to Nastase vs a spagghetti raquet, awesome shortly banned.
It's surprising how much you know about Vilas choises, he told you about Madrid and Barcelona?? Wow!!!!
Always you got Wembley in your mouth, I'm sorry, but that draw was not brilliant too. Wembley WAS a big event, but not in 77.

Tennisfan!
05-24-2009, 06:00 AM
Ah I forgot, Borg, Clay Court King, NEVER WON USO on CLAY, end for me...

jimbo333
05-24-2009, 11:20 AM
I think the 1999 example is the ultimate one of all to use here that best player and best year dont go hand in hand always. Yes tennis was different then of course. However the player who has the best year and the player who was really the best player dont always go hand in hand. Would anyone really question Agassi was the deserved and true #1 of 1999? Yet would anyone question Sampras was the best player in the world at the end of 1999? The latter was sealed pretty much in the year end final between the two titans that year, but the former was sealed pretty much at the U.S Open that year. It was different from 1995 where the two were sealed simatenously in that pivotal U.S Open final between them.

You seem to be falling into the trap of judgeing Head to Head stat as the most important stat (and maybe only stat) when comparing 2 players. You have to look at all the results not just the Head to Head. Agassi was the best player in 99!!!

If Sampras hadn't been injured then maybe yes Sampras would have been the better player that year. But he WAS injured and couldn't play for a chunk of the year:)

jimbo333
05-24-2009, 11:25 AM
I think Urban and Moose Malloy have said all that needs to be said. Your post is mostly nonsensical jibber-jabber.

The better player is the one who has the better year. The only possible exception could come in cases of injury, something that does not apply to this case. Your attempt to separate the two is a red herring; either intentional or out of ignorance.

I'm sorry but you seem very confused here:)

I do agree that the better player is the one who has the better year, but why make injury an exception? It seems only to make your argument correct? There is no logic here at all!!!

CyBorg
05-24-2009, 01:13 PM
I'm sorry but you seem very confused here:)

I do agree that the better player is the one who has the better year, but why make injury an exception? It seems only to make your argument correct? There is no logic here at all!!!

Injuries don't figure in very much for 1977 and as evidenced here I give Borg no breaks for his injuries in the summer of that year.

I think most unbiased folks would agree that Borg was by far the better player than Vilas in 1977.

However, was he the better player specifically overlooking the results for 1977? I say that looking at the results in 1977, he was. But not by far.

CyBorg
05-24-2009, 01:45 PM
Borg signs with WTT: Borg's mistake.
Vilas play many matches, but... HE WON IT!!!
Zelko Franulovic was a good clay court player, say what you want about him.
Sarcasm about RG 77, yeah whatever.
Lost to Nastase vs a spagghetti raquet, awesome shortly banned.
It's surprising how much you know about Vilas choises, he told you about Madrid and Barcelona?? Wow!!!!
Always you got Wembley in your mouth, I'm sorry, but that draw was not brilliant too. Wembley WAS a big event, but not in 77.

A lot of great players played WTT that decade. I don't see how it's a mistake. More like common practice.

As for Wembley, say what you will but I don't see Vilas winning a more important event outside of his RG and US Open titles.

Borgforever
05-24-2009, 02:55 PM
Ah I forgot, Borg, Clay Court King, NEVER WON USO on CLAY, end for me...

You don't have a single clue regarding Borg and Vilas... You constantly display a screaming lack of knowledge.

Well according to your "only records counts and not context" (although every educated person agrees context is everything) Rod Laver made a big mistake going pro with Ken and Pancho in 1963, right? His mistake right? He didn't play the ordinary amateur majors again until 1968 (when they became "open") and therefore according to you Emmo is the greatest tennis-player of the 1960s by far, right?

No context is necessary -- ever -- right? The Rocket is way below Emmo according to the as of today standard majors, I mean Rodman didn't win a single amateur-circuit tourney for five years (!) how can he be even regarded as the top man by so many when he's absent from tennis AS YOU KNOW IT for half a decade. And Emmo has more GS-majors than Rod and Rosewall...

And I for one are very, very satisfied with the pro players vote on who the best player was in 1977 -- the players who fought Björn, Jimmy and Guillermo gave The Player Of The Year 1977-award to Borg. Everybody who had first-hand knowledge of what these guys were capable of on a tennis-court that year -- and with a devastating majority they chose The Ice Man...

Talk about consensus among the tennis-players based on the foundation of seriously convincing, heavy-duty first-hand knowledge and experience as regards to the issue in which you speak...

Borgforever
05-24-2009, 03:04 PM
And no -- Franulovic wasn't a good clay-courter and he was old back then. Baby Borg beat Franulovic in 1971 -- easy -- and Borg was 15!

You're a funny guy! :-) I mean if you can't be witty -- be unintentionally funny -- and you succeed brilliantly in that department Tennis-fan!

380pistol
05-24-2009, 09:51 PM
I don't follow boxing. It's not a simple question, because I'm not privy to the context of that year. I therefore won't bother.

Agassi/Sampras involves an injury, which creates a possible shift between better and more accomplished. That's the only reason the two may not be one and the same.

You keep missing the point. Like Borgforever who used 1967 and Newcombe as something to draw a parrallel. The difference is although Newcombe won Wimbledon in 1967 and Laver didn't compete, but did Laver not win the French Pro, Wembly Pro and US Pro in 1967??

You keep saying "Vilas did this cuz Borg signed WTT", and "Vilas didn't do that", well what I've asked is what did Borg do in 1977 that would equate or teump what Vilas did??? I still haven't gotten anything, except "Borg didn't do this cuz of....".

Now tell how Borg's 1977 #'s are ahead of Vilas, that's something I need to consider. Not Borg would have beat Vilas to a pulp, cuz I already said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in fair one how many times?

I mean you chastise Vilas for creative scheduling, then in the same breath praise Muster for his 1995 clay season. You mean creaitive scheduling like missing Hamburg, and that little tournament in England they call Wimbledon. You mention Borg won Wimbledon over Connors in a tough field, but there's no mention of Vilas beating Connors in the final of that little tournament the play in New York. And don't tell me that Borg retired in the US Open, as we know your stance on injuries now don't we.

CyBorg
05-24-2009, 10:14 PM
You keep missing the point. Like Borgforever who used 1967 and Newcombe as something to draw a parrallel. The difference is although Newcombe won Wimbledon in 1967 and Laver didn't compete, but did Laver not win the French Pro, Wembly Pro and US Pro in 1967??

I'm not missing the point. I'm saying that you oversimplifying by bringing up a false binary.

By using the false binary one can just as easily conclude that Roy Emerson by the virtue of what he accomplished as an amateur was every bit as good a player as Laver.

You keep saying "Vilas did this cuz Borg signed WTT", and "Vilas didn't do that", well what I've asked is what did Borg do in 1977 that would equate or teump what Vilas did??? I still haven't gotten anything, except "Borg didn't do this cuz of....".

I've already made my case for Borg. His accomplishments in 1977 are quite impressive, but have to be looked at holistically. It wouldn't hurt if you'd read the posts by Moose Malloy, Carlo Colussi and Krosero about this. Carlo's post is in another thread on this board.

Now tell how Borg's 1977 #'s are ahead of Vilas, that's something I need to consider. Not Borg would have beat Vilas to a pulp, cuz I already said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in fair one how many times?

Borg's red clay record for the year is perfect. His har-tru record is inconcluive. He is the Wimbledon champion and his carpet results are better than Vilas's. This leads me to conclude that Vilas is at best the co-#1 for the year.

I'm sure Borg would have gladly played RG had he not been banned from it.

I mean you chastise Vilas for creative scheduling, then in the same breath praise Muster for his 1995 clay season. You mean creaitive scheduling like missing Hamburg, and that little tournament in England they call Wimbledon. You mention Borg won Wimbledon over Connors in a tough field, but there's no mention of Vilas beating Connors in the final of that little tournament the play in New York. And don't tell me that Borg retired in the US Open, as we know your stance on injuries now don't we.

Actually I use the Muster example, as an analogy. Muster's scheduling in 1995 was very creative - 11 of his 12 titles that year being won on clay.

What I did add to that was that Muster was at least still clearly the world's best on clay.

Also, I do not chastize Vilas for creative scheduling. It was fully within his rights to schedule however he saw fit. But it's the responsibility of those who wish to rate players for that calendar year to adequately pick apart at these records/results.

As for the US Open, perhaps I was unclear, but I give full credits to Vilas. I'm not saying that Vilas had a bad year or was not close in terms of accomplishments to Connors/Borg. Again, if I am to be conservative about this I rate them as co-#1s. I just don't agree with statements like "Vilas was clearly the #1 that year". He clearly wasn't clearly anything.

380pistol
05-24-2009, 10:36 PM
I'm not missing the point. I'm saying that you oversimplifying by bringing up a false binary.

By using the false binary one can just as easily conclude that Roy Emerson by the virtue of what he accomplished as an amateur was every bit as good a player as Laver.



I've already made my case for Borg. His accomplishments in 1977 are quite impressive, but have to be looked at holistically. It wouldn't hurt if you'd read the posts by Moose Malloy, Carlo Colussi and Krosero about this. Carlo's post is in another thread on this board.



Borg's red clay record for the year is perfect. His har-tru record is inconcluive. He is the Wimbledon champion and his carpet results are better than Vilas's. This leads me to conclude that Vilas is at best the co-#1 for the year.

I'm sure Borg would have gladly played RG had he not been banned from it.



Actually I use the Muster example, as an analogy. Muster's scheduling in 1995 was very creative - 11 of his 12 titles that year being won on clay.

What I did add to that was that Muster was at least still clearly the world's best on clay.

Also, I do not chastize Vilas for creative scheduling. It was fully within his rights to schedule however he saw fit. But it's the responsibility of those who wish to rate players for that calendar year to adequately pick apart at these records/results.

As for the US Open, perhaps I was unclear, but I give full credits to Vilas. I'm not saying that Vilas had a bad year or was not close in terms of accomplishments to Connors/Borg. Again, if I am to be conservative about this I rate them as co-#1s. I just don't agree with statements like "Vilas was clearly the #1 that year". He clearly wasn't clearly anything.

Emerson and Laver are you serious. First of all Laver and rosewall were winning slam "equivalent" (French, Wembley and US Pros). Secondly Laver won the Grand Slam in 1962 and then what happened to him on the Pro Circuit?? So that in itself tells anyone the difference in playing levels, betwem amateaurs and pros. So that Emerson arguement is meaningless.


No it wouldn't hurt you if you read and tried to see where I'm coming from instead of forcing your agenda upon everybody. I never once said Borg's 1977performance wasn't impressive, and never downplayed anything he did that year. I have asked a simple question "Does it stack up or surpass what Vilas did??" If so, on what basis??

Now it's Borg would have gladly played RG, I have no doubt he wouldn't. He probably would have won it, cementing the 1977 season as his. But he didn't. He was banned from it. Player of the year is the person who puts up the best #'s that year. Hell if Johan Santana got more run support last year and the bullpen didn't blow leads, he would have won more games, but he didn't. He may have been the best pitcher in the NL, but results wise Lincecum was better. I'd probably take Santana to start game 7 for me, but does that mean Lincecum did put up better #'s over the course of a 162 game season?


Vilas' scheduling smells of creative scheduling, and insinuating he skipped Madrid and Barcelona in the fall to avoid Borg, so why the hell did Muster skip Wimbledon in 1995??? Cuz he was a supreme grasscourter?!? He played what..St. Poelton that week?!? Gimmie a break.

Borgforever
05-24-2009, 10:45 PM
Borgforever and Cyborg,

It is an interesting debate. Borg won Wimbledon over Gonnors, in the toughest field, Borg was as usual great on clay. Borg won a ton of tournaments and probably overall had the best average level of play for the year. There is no doubt Borg was the best player in the world. Borg won hard court, carpet, clay and grass tournaments. A very impressive well balance performance showing his strength and versatility.

Vilas as everybody here knows won a ton of minor tournaments, won the French Open and the U.S. Open beating Jimmy Connors in the final. Would Vilas have done as well if he played a more balance schedule? I don't think he would have done as well. He clearly would have had a lot more losses that would look bad on his record. For example on grass Vilas won a total of three matches in three tournaments leading up to and including Wimbledon. However he did reach the finals of the Australian losing to Tanner in straight sets. The majority of Vilas' achievements for the year was on clay but he did win a couple of hard court and indoor tournaments.

I've actually hedged back and forth over the years on this. The thing that is very clear to me however is that Vilas, while he was a bit better than he was in 1976 really was a similar player to what he was in 1976 and in 1975, just more confident which allowed him to do better in matches against players like Connors but not Borg. Vilas had one style of play for all surfaces and that style was best suited for clay.

Borg is a different story. He was clearly a better player than he was the previous year and much better than he was in 1975 when he still was able to defeat Vilas in straight sets in the French Open final. In 1977 he could play any style of tennis and beat you with it. On grass he could serve and volley, on clay he could grind it out and wear you down, on hard court he could even play the power baseline game if needed.

So I would go with Borg. He won Wimbledon, the most important tournament. He defeated Vilas and Connors head to head and he had the best winning percentage and best balanced record on the tour.

The one thing I cannot understand is how anyone can pick Connors as number one for 1977. Can the people who picked Connors explain their reasoning to me?

Read this 380 and CyB's description of Vilas way through 1977. Borg and Vilas played the same tourney just a very few times that year since Vilas said openly to everyone (and had been for years) that he could never touch Borg. After getting, as always, steamrolled with 6-1, 6-1, 6-3 by Björn the following year at RG 1978 Guillermo said "I think I did one of my greatest matches against an otherworldy player(!?)"...

That was five months after 1977. Vilas got bageled and absolutely humiliated by Borg on clay AT EVERY MEETING in 1977 -- and also on the Supreme Court indoor carpet at the YEC Masters at Madison Square Garden in New York City in January 1978 (belonging to 1977 -- strange undenialble context again).

Wimbledon has always been and always will be a bigger event than US Open -- especially back then. Ask any player -- one USO or one Wimby title -- almost everyone will go for the golden trophy -- I've only heard one answer to that question. And USO 77 was devalued and not as tough as Wimby. Why?

Well -- first it was considered by everyone to be the second biggest tourney -- not the No. 1 tourney -- secondly, and more important, was the fact that USO 77 had only best of three set matches for the early rounds. One of the major reasons for the prestigious status that the GS-majors have always had is the fact that every round is best of five. If Wimby did the same as USO did in 1977 -- i. e. going for best of three -- Björn would've vanished in straight sets at R2 at Wimby against Edmondson. The GS-majors are designed to be the ultimate endurance, psychological and tennis-skill test on the planet offering the widest array of opportunities to make a comeback and make it extra hard for anybody to win a match. And as the matches grow longer, rolling over into seven rounds over a fortnight it really separates the best of the best. Borg had to win more sets against everybody. That is context and that is also a record which clearly makes the Wimby win outshine Har-Tru USO 77 with enitre draw playing best of three up until the QF.

This is hard fact and it's the foundation of that years record. It's also futher illuminating context that gives a greater understanding and knowledge of the year in question. This is also undisputed.

With that knowledge now -- which tourney do you rank higher? Wimby 77 or USO 77? Which title is the hardest to win you think just based one these facts which are the record?

Thirdly, and also of fundamental importance in comparison between these two great events was the fact and record of Connors, who was also much stronger on the faster surfaces grass, indoor and hardcourt cement. Jimbo was a greater foe at Wimby than at USO. This is context and that is also fact that belongs to th record.

Borg was 22-0 on clay in 77 making mincemeat of Guillermo on the dirt -- which he always did, nothing new here -- and he beat the tougher Jimbo at Wimby clearly demonstrating that he was the best on grass in 1977 also. One could say that Jimbo was still indoor Emperor in 1977 since he won YEC Masters over Borg -- who as usual sawed off Vilas head in the semis while yawning. Borg won against tougher fields, had a better head to head than Vilas and Jimbo had against the entire top ten that year and had a 2-1 H2H against Jimbo and a 3-0 H2H against Vilas.

He was -- for the record -- clearly beter than Vilas on grass, clay and indoors in 1977. And practically every player voted him the best that year -- guys who had first-hand knowledge about these guys during this particular time.

Are you suggesting 380 that all the pros in 1977 don't know what they're talking about? That you know it all and the pros are know-nothings?

This is the facts, the record and the context of the tennis year 1977...

380pistol
05-24-2009, 10:55 PM
Are you suggesting 380 that all the pros in 1977 don't know what they're talking about? That you know it all and the pros are know-nothings?

This is the facts, the record and the context of the tennis year 1977...

How can I suggest anything when all I've done is ask a question?? How many times have I posed this same question to cyBorg now???

I just asked a question, and gave basis for that question. I never even claimed to have the answer to the question.

Borgforever
05-24-2009, 11:15 PM
No worries man :-) -- I don't want to sound harsh -- and I apologize if it came out that way. Everyone here has every right to question everything or ask about anything and shouldn't be attacked for it. I encourage questions -- one doesn't get much by silence. The debate -- exchanging views, experiences and personal perspectives is key here...

Tennisfan!
05-25-2009, 05:14 AM
My friend, do you really hurt the USO do you?? ;)
Personal attacks, post reported, take it easy

Tennisfan!
05-25-2009, 05:16 AM
And no -- Franulovic wasn't a good clay-courter and he was old back then. Baby Borg beat Franulovic in 1971 -- easy -- and Borg was 15!

You're a funny guy! :-) I mean if you can't be witty -- be unintentionally funny -- and you succeed brilliantly in that department Tennis-fan!

Your name say it all, bye bye

stormholloway
05-25-2009, 07:24 AM
Seems clear to me that Vilas was #1.

CyBorg
05-25-2009, 08:43 AM
Emerson and Laver are you serious. First of all Laver and rosewall were winning slam "equivalent" (French, Wembley and US Pros). Secondly Laver won the Grand Slam in 1962 and then what happened to him on the Pro Circuit?? So that in itself tells anyone the difference in playing levels, betwem amateaurs and pros. So that Emerson arguement is meaningless.

That's the point - that there is a difference. You cannot make binaries and claim equality. What matters is that there exists sufficient evidence for a player's ability on a particular surface. This is why I speak of surfaces - this allows me to avoid binaries, avoid reducing everything to singular events.

No it wouldn't hurt you if you read and tried to see where I'm coming from instead of forcing your agenda upon everybody. I never once said Borg's 1977performance wasn't impressive, and never downplayed anything he did that year. I have asked a simple question "Does it stack up or surpass what Vilas did??" If so, on what basis??

I don't see where I accused you of saying that about Borg.

Now it's Borg would have gladly played RG, I have no doubt he wouldn't. He probably would have won it, cementing the 1977 season as his. But he didn't. He was banned from it. Player of the year is the person who puts up the best #'s that year. Hell if Johan Santana got more run support last year and the bullpen didn't blow leads, he would have won more games, but he didn't. He may have been the best pitcher in the NL, but results wise Lincecum was better. I'd probably take Santana to start game 7 for me, but does that mean Lincecum did put up better #'s over the course of a 162 game season?

Again, I suggest you read the posts by Moose Malloy, Carlo and Krosero - it will clarify the problematics of relying on the RG argument. By referring constantly to RG, you commit the fallacy of false choice and manufacture and unnecessary hypothetical (that is, whether Borg would or would not win at RG). What really matters is whether there is sufficient evidence for Borg's excellence on red clay - not whether he would or would not win RG.

In order to adjust your thinking you have to be aware of the context that era in relation to ours today. We look at Roland Garros now as the deciding factor in excellence on a particular surface, because of the way the tour is standardized.

Vilas' scheduling smells of creative scheduling, and insinuating he skipped Madrid and Barcelona in the fall to avoid Borg, so why the hell did Muster skip Wimbledon in 1995??? Cuz he was a supreme grasscourter?!? He played what..St. Poelton that week?!? Gimmie a break.

Muster skipped Wimbledon, because he hated grass. Not sure what you're getting at here.

380pistol
05-25-2009, 09:31 AM
That's the point - that there is a difference. You cannot make binaries and claim equality. What matters is that there exists sufficient evidence for a player's ability on a particular surface. This is why I speak of surfaces - this allows me to avoid binaries, avoid reducing everything to singular events.



I don't see where I accused you of saying that about Borg.



Again, I suggest you read the posts by Moose Malloy, Carlo and Krosero - it will clarify the problematics of relying on the RG argument. By referring constantly to RG, you commit the fallacy of false choice and manufacture and unnecessary hypothetical (that is, whether Borg would or would not win at RG). What really matters is whether there is sufficient evidence for Borg's excellence on red clay - not whether he would or would not win RG.

In order to adjust your thinking you have to be aware of the context that era in relation to ours today. We look at Roland Garros now as the deciding factor in excellence on a particular surface, because of the way the tour is standardized.



Muster skipped Wimbledon, because he hated grass. Not sure what you're getting at here.

What is wrong with you??? I said Laver can be considered cuz he did "this", and "this"is equivalent or superior to what Emmerson did based on "that". I never said Borg did or didn't do it, I 've said you haven't shown me what Borg did, and when you did you haven't shown how it is inferioir/superior to what Vilas did. I didn't claim equality, I said what is your basis for saying Borg's performance was above Vilas'?

Relying on the RG?!? How about along with that the US Open (which you don't , or haven't acknowledged), 134 wins, 17 titles, 53 straight on clay, 46 (or whatever it was) overall.

What I said about RG was that it's been the premier claycourt tournament, since who knows when. If certain politics happened that certain players did not compete in it, how does that make it no the most premier?? Didn't Borg win RG twice (once when Connors didn't go) before 1977, and was considered the best claycourter. Now was that honour bestowed upon him due to his performances in Rome??

That's like saying due to boycotts in 1980 and 1984 the Olympics were not the most prestigious amateur athletic competition, and the World Championships were?? Were the World Championships fields deeper?? Quite possibly. But how does that fare in relation to taking hom medals in 1980 and 1984??

Muster skipped Wimbledon was cuz he hated grass, fine. Why did Vilas skip Madrid and Barcelona then?? Different toilet, same sh**.

CyBorg
05-25-2009, 09:54 AM
What is wrong with you??? I said Laver can be considered cuz he did "this", and "this"is equivalent or superior to what Emmerson did based on "that". I never said Borg did or didn't do it, I 've said you haven't shown me what Borg did, and when you did you haven't shown how it is inferioir/superior to what Vilas did. I didn't claim equality, I said what is your basis for saying Borg's performance was above Vilas'?

Slow down. I've made all my arguments quite clear in these multiple threads on the topic. For clarity's sake, I'm focussing on the red clay portion which appears to be the most important one.

I believe I have been sufficiently clear about Borg's red clay accomplishments in 1977, as well as Vilas's. You may address them directly, if you like.

Relying on the RG?!? How about along with that the US Open (which you don't , or haven't acknowledged), 134 wins, 17 titles, 53 straight on clay, 46 (or whatever it was) overall.

Your arguments lack clarity and grounding. You're jumping from place to place like a chicken without a head.

What I said about RG was that it's been the premier claycourt tournament, since who knows when. If certain politics happened that certain players did not compete in it, how does that make it no the most premier?? Didn't Borg win RG twice (once when Connors didn't go) before 1977, and was considered the best claycourter. Now was that honour bestowed upon him due to his performances in Rome??

It clearly wasn't the premier clay court event during the amateur/pro split. So... what are you talking about?

That's like saying due to boycotts in 1980 and 1984 the Olympics were not the most prestigious amateur athletic competition, and the World Championships were?? Were the World Championships fields deeper?? Quite possibly. But how does that fare in relation to taking hom medals in 1980 and 1984??

Well, if I'm to make judgements about American amateur athletes I definitely would take the 1984 Olympic results with a grain of salt. The World Championships would probably be considered regardless.

Muster skipped Wimbledon was cuz he hated grass, fine. Why did Vilas skip Madrid and Barcelona then?? Different toilet, same sh**.

I'm not really following you. Are you objecting to something particular I said about Muster?

380pistol
05-25-2009, 02:15 PM
Slow down. I've made all my arguments quite clear in these multiple threads on the topic. For clarity's sake, I'm focussing on the red clay portion which appears to be the most important one.

I believe I have been sufficiently clear about Borg's red clay accomplishments in 1977, as well as Vilas's. You may address them directly, if you like.



Your arguments lack clarity and grounding. You're jumping from place to place like a chicken without a head.



It clearly wasn't the premier clay court event during the amateur/pro split. So... what are you talking about?



Well, if I'm to make judgements about American amateur athletes I definitely would take the 1984 Olympic results with a grain of salt. The World Championships would probably be considered regardless.



I'm not really following you. Are you objecting to something particular I said about Muster?

My point exactly. Regarding 1984 USA amateur athletes you'd take it with a grain of salt. But does that mean they weren't (who ever won) the best?? You can't just take it away based on the fact that Russia and severalcountries boycotted.

They may be the best, they may not be. But in 1984 the best sprinter was Carl Lewis. Unless you can show how someone did something equivalent (or superior) to his 4 golds, then the honour is his.

The honour for 1977 belongs to Vilas. If you can show me how Borg's 1977 equates it, or surpasses I'm open to hear it. You've been sufficeirnt about "red clay". I'm sorry was that the only surface the played on 1977??? Take the player's years (not individual abitlies), and if you can show me anything between Borg and Vilas, I'd be more than happy to hear it. I mean flying24 made a great point about the Grand Prix masters, which makes me rethink where Vilas stands in 1977. You as of yet have not. And that's all I'm looking for.

As far as the French Open was concerned, was it the premier claycourt tournamnet in 1974 and 75?? Should we throw out Borg's 1974 RG title?? I mean Connors wasn't allowed to play. The #1player who won the slams he played in that year. When talking about the greatest claycourter or Borg/Nadal, you don't mention that?? You don't hold that against Borg do you??

And Muster. You said Vilas smelled of shady scheduling, I don't dispute that. But Muster doesn't seem to get it as hard from you as Vilas. Either they both get it, or they don't.

jimbo333
05-25-2009, 02:40 PM
It really looks like 380 is actually still winning this argument:)

So far!!!

CyBorg
05-25-2009, 05:56 PM
My point exactly. Regarding 1984 USA amateur athletes you'd take it with a grain of salt. But does that mean they weren't (who ever won) the best?? You can't just take it away based on the fact that Russia and severalcountries boycotted.

This is not about "taking anything away". I'm not familiar enough with these competitions and exactly how many championships there are for these sports. It probably differs depending on the sport.

Let's say we're talking about gymnastics for 1984. Men's pommel horse competition. The best gymnast is a Russian, but he's not at the Olympics because of the country's boycott. The guy who winds up winning is an American.

However, based on that very year's results at the World Championships and perhaps other events the Russian wins handily.

Which player has the better results? Well, the Russian - as long as we can demonstrate clearly that he was better in that particular competition than the American.

They may be the best, they may not be. But in 1984 the best sprinter was Carl Lewis. Unless you can show how someone did something equivalent (or superior) to his 4 golds, then the honour is his.

There was only one Olympics, but I'm sure there were other events that were of great importance. The Olympics itself was devalued somewhat by the absence of the Russian team.

The honour for 1977 belongs to Vilas. If you can show me how Borg's 1977 equates it, or surpasses I'm open to hear it. You've been sufficeirnt about "red clay". I'm sorry was that the only surface the played on 1977??? Take the player's years (not individual abitlies), and if you can show me anything between Borg and Vilas, I'd be more than happy to hear it. I mean flying24 made a great point about the Grand Prix masters, which makes me rethink where Vilas stands in 1977. You as of yet have not. And that's all I'm looking for.

As I've already explained, I'm focussing on the red clay results in order to argue that particular point - that Borg was better on red clay. If this is sufficient for you, then you can look at the points I made about the rest of Vilas's year. I see him as the player with the best results on green clay - winning a handful of minor events in America before nabbing the US Open. However, his results at Wimbledon and carpet are below Borg's. So I give red clay, carpet and grass to Borg.

Do you need a more in-depth illustration of this? Do I really have to say the obvious and mention that Borg beat Vilas at the Masters? You can look that up yourself.

As far as the French Open was concerned, was it the premier claycourt tournamnet in 1974 and 75?? Should we throw out Borg's 1974 RG title?? I mean Connors wasn't allowed to play. The #1player who won the slams he played in that year. When talking about the greatest claycourter or Borg/Nadal, you don't mention that?? You don't hold that against Borg do you??

Why don't you read what I post? I really have serious doubts about your reading comprehension skills.

As said many times already, in order to judge a player's competence on a surface in a year we have to cite some evidence. Connors in 1974 avoided red clay events entirely, so all we can do is make hypotheticals about what he could have done in events like Roland Garros or Rome. We don't know. We could bring up his red clay results from 1973, but those aren't really in his favour. As it is, there is no concise argument that one can make for Connors in respect to red clay for 1974.

And Muster. You said Vilas smelled of shady scheduling, I don't dispute that. But Muster doesn't seem to get it as hard from you as Vilas. Either they both get it, or they don't.

I brought up Muster, because I saw similarities in his schedule to that of Vilas. You are an absolutely incredibly dense person.

CyBorg
05-25-2009, 05:59 PM
It really looks like 380 is actually still winning this argument:)

So far!!!

You're on his side, which means he's not.

380pistol
05-25-2009, 09:38 PM
This is not about "taking anything away". I'm not familiar enough with these competitions and exactly how many championships there are for these sports. It probably differs depending on the sport.

Let's say we're talking about gymnastics for 1984. Men's pommel horse competition. The best gymnast is a Russian, but he's not at the Olympics because of the country's boycott. The guy who winds up winning is an American.

However, based on that very year's results at the World Championships and perhaps other events the Russian wins handily.

Which player has the better results? Well, the Russian - as long as we can demonstrate clearly that he was better in that particular competition than the American.



There was only one Olympics, but I'm sure there were other events that were of great importance. The Olympics itself was devalued somewhat by the absence of the Russian team.



As I've already explained, I'm focussing on the red clay results in order to argue that particular point - that Borg was better on red clay. If this is sufficient for you, then you can look at the points I made about the rest of Vilas's year. I see him as the player with the best results on green clay - winning a handful of minor events in America before nabbing the US Open. However, his results at Wimbledon and carpet are below Borg's. So I give red clay, carpet and grass to Borg.

Do you need a more in-depth illustration of this? Do I really have to say the obvious and mention that Borg beat Vilas at the Masters? You can look that up yourself.



Why don't you read what I post? I really have serious doubts about your reading comprehension skills.

As said many times already, in order to judge a player's competence on a surface in a year we have to cite some evidence. Connors in 1974 avoided red clay events entirely, so all we can do is make hypotheticals about what he could have done in events like Roland Garros or Rome. We don't know. We could bring up his red clay results from 1973, but those aren't really in his favour. As it is, there is no concise argument that one can make for Connors in respect to red clay for 1974.



I brought up Muster, because I saw similarities in his schedule to that of Vilas. You are an absolutely incredibly dense person.

Your gymnasticas arguement just made my point. Let's say the Russian takes gold at the World Championships (with all countries competing), and the American takes silver at WC, but gold at the Olympics (with certain countries boycotting), the American has had a better year. 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. The Russian may be the better gymnast but didn't produce better results, so gymnast of the year goes to the American.

I don't know why you're damn near killing yourself not to see this.

You're arguing that Borg was better on red clay, did I say he wasn't?? You're insecurities become more apparent with each post.

You go both ways. Connors was not as great as Borg on red clay. But Borg skipping the French with the weaker field is something you hold against Vilas, but Connors missing the French in 1974, and maybe other I maybe unaware of, is something you don't hold against Borg. It seems all you're trying to is spin this in Borg's favour no matter what. Even if you contradict yourself.

And.....

Personally, I think Borg was the best player of that year (and every year from 1976-1980) BUT I do believe that Vilas amassed more than enough of the best results to fairly claim the #1 spot.


...I guess he's as dense as me as he's ushering the same sentiment. I mean 134 wins, 53 straight on clay, 46 consecutively, 17 tiltes (incl. 2 slams). If Borg didn't sign with WTT they may be different. But does Borg's 1977 stack up, wherever he did it..WTT??..The moon?? Pluto??? If it does, then it does, if it doesn't it doesn't.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 04:58 AM
Your gymnasticas arguement just made my point. Let's say the Russian takes gold at the World Championships (with all countries competing), and the American takes silver at WC, but gold at the Olympics (with certain countries boycotting), the American has had a better year. 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. The Russian may be the better gymnast but didn't produce better results, so gymnast of the year goes to the American.

Disagree. First of all, the World Championships becomes a much significant and representative event of the tour's (or whatever one may refer to it) quality. The Olympics become essentially downgraded to any reasonable analyst due to the absence of the Soviet Team.

Second of all, as in the case of Borg, we have more than two events to talk about. Again, you're creating an imaginary dichotomy. Borg in fact won two red clay events in which Vilas was a participant - Nice and Monte Carlo, beating Vilas in both.

Again, you're simply reducing everything to numbers and adding up events quantitatively, ignoring context and avoiding nuance.

I don't know why you're damn near killing yourself not to see this.

You're arguing that Borg was better on red clay, did I say he wasn't?? You're insecurities become more apparent with each post.

No. I'm arguing that there is sufficient evidence based on the year's results that Borg was better on red clay. There is a difference.

Nice touch about 'insecurities'. That one really put me in my place. You're a champ.

You go both ways. Connors was not as great as Borg on red clay. But Borg skipping the French with the weaker field is something you hold against Vilas, but Connors missing the French in 1974, and maybe other I maybe unaware of, is something you don't hold against Borg. It seems all you're trying to is spin this in Borg's favour no matter what. Even if you contradict yourself.

Did you not read my post? Based on my post above, tell me why the case of Connors in 1974 in respect to red clay is different than the case of Borg in 1977 in respect to red clay. I just want to see if you fail to understand or are merely being stubborn.

And.....


...I guess he's as dense as me as he's ushering the same sentiment. I mean 134 wins, 53 straight on clay, 46 consecutively, 17 tiltes (incl. 2 slams). If Borg didn't sign with WTT they may be different. But does Borg's 1977 stack up, wherever he did it..WTT??..The moon?? Pluto??? If it does, then it does, if it doesn't it doesn't.

Jan Kodes in 1971 had more slams than Rod Laver. Must be a better player; must have better numbers. If you ignore context. Monkey see. Monkey draw false conclusion.

Gorecki
05-26-2009, 05:58 AM
two slams and one runner up plus the 46 match streak...

sounds suficient to me and by todays standards i think it would be more than enough, but i must agree Borg and Jimbo have a word on that discussion...

jimbo333
05-26-2009, 06:05 AM
You're on his side, which means he's not.

Nice comment:)

Although I'm definitely not on his side, but he is winning the argument!

I can see one big hole in his argument, but I'm not going to tell you what it is. You mentioned it in passing , but didn't follow it up:)

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 06:11 AM
Nice comment:)

Although I'm definitely not on his side, but he is winning the argument!

I can see one big hole in his argument, but I'm not going to tell you what it is. You mentioned it in passing , but didn't follow it up:)

Well, that's settled. Thanks for your invaluable contribution.

You're right - he's winning the argument, even though respected posters like Moose Malloy and Krosero have all acknowledged the validity of my arguments.

But lo and behold jimbo333 himself shows up and doesn't side with CyBorg. Oh whatever shall I do?

jimbo333
05-26-2009, 06:17 AM
Well, that's settled. Thanks for your invaluable contribution.

You're right - he's winning the argument, even though respected posters like Moose Malloy and Krosero have all acknowledged the validity of my arguments.

But lo and behold jimbo333 himself shows up and doesn't side with CyBorg. Oh whatever shall I do?

Buy a hat?

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 06:18 AM
Buy a hat?

I was thinking more of dancing the holly-jolly.

jean pierre
05-26-2009, 08:14 AM
The n°1 is not necesseraly the best one, because everyone may have a different opinion about the best one. The n°1 is the guy who has the best results. In 1977, who has the best results ? Vilas. How is it possible to contest that ????

380pistol
05-26-2009, 09:20 AM
Disagree. First of all, the World Championships becomes a much significant and representative event of the tour's (or whatever one may refer to it) quality. The Olympics become essentially downgraded to any reasonable analyst due to the absence of the Soviet Team.

Second of all, as in the case of Borg, we have more than two events to talk about. Again, you're creating an imaginary dichotomy. Borg in fact won two red clay events in which Vilas was a participant - Nice and Monte Carlo, beating Vilas in both.

Again, you're simply reducing everything to numbers and adding up events quantitatively, ignoring context and avoiding nuance.



No. I'm arguing that there is sufficient evidence based on the year's results that Borg was better on red clay. There is a difference.

Nice touch about 'insecurities'. That one really put me in my place. You're a champ.



Did you not read my post? Based on my post above, tell me why the case of Connors in 1974 in respect to red clay is different than the case of Borg in 1977 in respect to red clay. I just want to see if you fail to understand or are merely being stubborn.



Jan Kodes in 1971 had more slams than Rod Laver. Must be a better player; must have better numbers. If you ignore context. Monkey see. Monkey draw false conclusion.

Wow you are an idiot. Performer of the year, is based on how you perform, not if you perform. Again 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. Now if the Russian did not boycott the olympics he may very well have 2 golds then, but he didn't. How do you rate an MIA???

Borg beat Vilas, blah, blah, blah. And you talk about dense. How many damn times have I said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one??? Can you explain my reason for saying that???

Again Borg was better on red clay, why the hell are you telling me that?? Did I say he wasn't???

Again Connors missing the French in 1974 in relation to Borg missing the French in 1977..... do you understand the parrallel I was drawing. How many damn times have you said Borg won Rome in 1977 with a "stronger" feild than Vilas' 1977 French. So how strong was "the field" for the 1974 French Open that Borg won???? Enlighten me.

Your Jan Kodes proves your either an idiot, don't understand simple english, or just want to reason any and everything in Borg's favour. Before you bring up Kodes/Laver 1971, why did I say although I think Vilas is the player of the year in 1977, I'd still take Borg 1977 over him in a fair one??? Please, tell me oh wise one??

380pistol
05-26-2009, 09:37 AM
Nice comment:)

Although I'm definitely not on his side, but he is winning the argument!

I can see one big hole in his argument, but I'm not going to tell you what it is. You mentioned it in passing , but didn't follow it up:)

I don't normally bother with you, but there's no hole in my arguement, cuz I don't have an arguement, and that's what cyBorg fails to see.

I said based on results Vilas was player of the year in 1977. He said cuz of the WTT split, things may have been skwered. I never disputed that. I said if that is true, and Borg did miss the French, what does he think Borg did over the course of those 365 days, that equates or surpasses what Vilas did?? If he can show me I'm open to hear it.

flying24 made an excellent point making a case for Borg, and I said so. I haven't as of yet gone and researched it, but it's far more than cyBorg has ever made.

Who was the best player in the NBA in 1993-94?? Hakeem Olajuwon..... NOT Michael Jordan. Jordan was off playing baseball. If Jordan had shown up, it would have likely been him, but he didn't. If not for the WTT and politics, then Borg may have (and capitilized0 on the oppotunity to put up the best overall results, thus probably hurting some of Vilas' in the process.

Look at the gymnastics example....
"X" - gold in the olympics, and silver at the world championships
"Y" - gold in the world championships and MIA in the olympics

Who's results are better??? 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. Now if "Y" went to the olympics he very well may have ended up with 2 golds, thus trumping the 2 silver's "X" would have won, but he didn't. I don't feel you can take it away from "X" or give it to "Y" based on a "what if???" "Y" may be the better gymnast, but to be gymnast of the year you gotta go and do it, and he didn't. Not cuz of ability but circumstance. What if "Y" went to the olympics had a freak accident and finished 12th??? What if "Y" got hurt at the olympics (as cyBorg said injuries are part of the game), and got a DNF???

Unless someone can show me over the course of said year "Y"'s results equate or surpass "X"'s , how is "X" not gymnast of the year/ Yeah "Y" did not have chance at the olymics (hence I said he may be the better gynast b/w the two), but over the course of the year "X" had better results, so he should get gymnast of the year.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 11:30 AM
Wow you are an idiot. Performer of the year, is based on how you perform, not if you perform. Again 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. Now if the Russian did not boycott the olympics he may very well have 2 golds then, but he didn't. How do you rate an MIA???

It depends on the context. You wouldn't rate an athlete as the performer of the year for the pommel horse if this person won the gold at a depleted Olympics, but was clearly inferior to other player or players in alternate events. This is why we analyze, rather than merely add up numbers without any concern for what goes on.

We cannot assume that events have inherent value. Grand slam events, save for Wimbledon and the US Open did not have inherent value until years and years into the open era. For a variety of reasons - prize money, low attendance, and consecutive events such as WTT.

Conversely, you're taking the contemporary standard of what Roland Garros is and applying it indiscriminantly to 1977. By that equal logic, an event like Dallas has absolutely no value for that year, as it no longer exists.

Borg beat Vilas, blah, blah, blah. And you talk about dense. How many damn times have I said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one??? Can you explain my reason for saying that???

This isn't gramatically correct, so I can't follow what you're saying.

Again Borg was better on red clay, why the hell are you telling me that?? Did I say he wasn't???

First of all, take a deep breath. Second of all, the distinction is unnecessary. The best player in 1977 is the most accomplished player. In order to say with any degree of certitude that "player a" is better than "player b" in a particular year, we have to look at evidence for how "player a" performed in relation to "player b".

Again Connors missing the French in 1974 in relation to Borg missing the French in 1977..... do you understand the parrallel I was drawing. How many damn times have you said Borg won Rome in 1977 with a "stronger" feild than Vilas' 1977 French. So how strong was "the field" for the 1974 French Open that Borg won???? Enlighten me.

You're confused. Borg did not win Rome in 1977. Right away, you've got your facts wrong.

Now, in 1974 the French Open field was pretty strong - you can take a look at it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1974_French_Open_-_Men's_Singles

I cannot say I understand what parallel it is you're drawing. Actually, I think you're pretty confused.

Your Jan Kodes proves your either an idiot, don't understand simple english, or just want to reason any and everything in Borg's favour. Before you bring up Kodes/Laver 1971, why did I say although I think Vilas is the player of the year in 1977, I'd still take Borg 1977 over him in a fair one??? Please, tell me oh wise one??

Before you criticize my comprehension of English, you may wish to get your spelling straight. Also, calling me an idiot is the last resort of a scoundrel.

So, are you telling me now that you would take Borg's 1977 over that of Vilas based on their respective accomplishments in that year? Your grammar here is pretty poor, so I can't say whether you're simply drudging up the same point you've already made before, or putting out something new.

This thread is quite explicitly about 1977, nothing else. This is all that is being talked about.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 12:04 PM
I said based on results Vilas was player of the year in 1977. He said cuz of the WTT split, things may have been skwered.

Things weren't "skewed" - the WTT was a mainstay in tennis in those years.

I never disputed that. I said if that is true, and Borg did miss the French, what does he think Borg did over the course of those 365 days, that equates or surpasses what Vilas did?? If he can show me I'm open to hear it.

Produced better results on red clay, carpet and Wimbledon. All surpass Vilas's results on those very same surfaces.

Carpet and Wimbledon isn't hard to prove. Vilas lost in round three of Wimbledon. Vilas also won only a single event on carpet - a minor one in Springfield and two minor hardcourt events.

As for as red clay - I value Borg's perfect 22-0 record, including wins over Vilas in Nice and Monte Carlo over Vilas's victory in a Borg-less Roland Garros and bizarre losses to Franulovic and Mottram in Hamburg and Rome.

Who was the best player in the NBA in 1993-94?? Hakeem Olajuwon..... NOT Michael Jordan. Jordan was off playing baseball. If Jordan had shown up, it would have likely been him, but he didn't. If not for the WTT and politics, then Borg may have (and capitilized0 on the oppotunity to put up the best overall results, thus probably hurting some of Vilas' in the process.

I realize that you haven't done much research on this, so you may be shocked to hear that Borg was playing in 1977 also.

Look at the gymnastics example....
"X" - gold in the olympics, and silver at the world championships
"Y" - gold in the world championships and MIA in the olympics

Who's results are better??? 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. Now if "Y" went to the olympics he very well may have ended up with 2 golds, thus trumping the 2 silver's "X" would have won, but he didn't. I don't feel you can take it away from "X" or give it to "Y" based on a "what if???" "Y" may be the better gymnast, but to be gymnast of the year you gotta go and do it, and he didn't. Not cuz of ability but circumstance. What if "Y" went to the olympics had a freak accident and finished 12th??? What if "Y" got hurt at the olympics (as cyBorg said injuries are part of the game), and got a DNF???

The better results are those of the player who is more dominant, not the player who simply won more.

Take Edwin Moses - the 1980 track and field athlete of the year. He won this award, despite the US boycott of the Olympics, based on his dominance of the sport in other competitions.

Unless someone can show me over the course of said year "Y"'s results equate or surpass "X"'s , how is "X" not gymnast of the year/ Yeah "Y" did not have chance at the olymics (hence I said he may be the better gynast b/w the two), but over the course of the year "X" had better results, so he should get gymnast of the year.

Borg performed better on carpet (Vilas won only one event on it). Better on grass (won Wimbledon, comparing to Vilas's third round exit). Borg was also flawless on clay, the biggest win coming in Monte Carlo. Vilas conversely put together a sparkling record on green clay - Borg only eight matches on it, winning seven.

The argument is quite simply that Vilas did not put together better results, unless one simply adds up the greater quantity of minor events that Vilas won and says "voila - 16 bests 12". I think it's reasonable to say that we can throw that logic out of the window - Vilas's great quantity of titles is irrelevant. The same way that Muster's 12 titles shouldn't trump those of Sampras and Agassi in 1995 (both won fewer than 10).

It really comes down to surfaces. And the only surface that may at all be unclear as to who is better is red clay. I see Borg's spotless record on it as sufficient evidence that he was better. His domination of Vilas. His win in Monte Carlo over Vilas in particular.

This doesn't mean that I feel that Vilas had a bad year or that Borg had a far better year. As I've mentioned many times, I believe it is reasonable to rate these guys as co-#1s, possibly along with Connors.

My main point of contention is in respect to the opinion of some that Vilas "by far had the better year". He didn't. Not by far. Not at all.

krosero
05-26-2009, 12:06 PM
Who was the best player in the NBA in 1993-94?? Hakeem Olajuwon..... NOT Michael Jordan. Jordan was off playing baseball. If Jordan had shown up, it would have likely been him, but he didn't. If not for the WTT and politics, then Borg may have (and capitilized0 on the oppotunity to put up the best overall results, thus probably hurting some of Vilas' in the process.

Look at the gymnastics example....
"X" - gold in the olympics, and silver at the world championships
"Y" - gold in the world championships and MIA in the olympics

Who's results are better??? 1 gold and 1 silver > 1 gold. Now if "Y" went to the olympics he very well may have ended up with 2 golds, thus trumping the 2 silver's "X" would have won, but he didn't. I don't feel you can take it away from "X" or give it to "Y" based on a "what if???" "Y" may be the better gymnast, but to be gymnast of the year you gotta go and do it, and he didn't. Not cuz of ability but circumstance. What if "Y" went to the olympics had a freak accident and finished 12th??? What if "Y" got hurt at the olympics (as cyBorg said injuries are part of the game), and got a DNF???I once told you that I disliked analogies with other sports, though I didn't get into the reasons. One is that is they almost never fit the situation. Borg and Vilas played only tennis. It doesn't help to hear that Jordan missed basketball because he was playing baseball -- or that Ali missed fights because he was in prison. There's just nothing like that in Borg/Vilas.

I tend to think that analogies almost always distract and confuse. Most of us here just want to talk about tennis, and it's a bit of a pain to feel that you have to look up facts about other sports merely to respond to an analogy, when the real meat that we want is the facts about the tennis situation. I feel like you're honestly wanting to know more about Borg/Vilas, but excuse the soapbox for a second, friend, you're not going to clarify your mind by reaching for analogies with other sports. Best just to read whatever you can about tennis in 1977 (throw in 1970-71 if you want), esp. those other threads that are linked to in the OP.

Now about the gymnastics, here's one analogy that it might help to break down, simply to show why it doesn't fit the tennis situation. Again I don't know that sport very well -- so try to stick to the basic general knowledge of that sport shared by everyone -- but it seems to me that at least outsiders regard the Olympics as the most prestigious event, more than any world championship. Perhaps gymnasts themselves feel that way, I don't even know that much. But if the Olympics is the big one, then that corresponds to Wimbledon, not the French Open.

You'd be better off imagining that one gymnast was absent from the World Championship (but still doing gymnastics, not baseball or prison time) but that he did attend the Olympics and beat all his competition there.

In that case I can't automatically agree that his single gold is less valuable than the other man's gold and silver, partly because I don't know more about the sport -- and also because there are still other differences with the tennis situation. Your analogy is all about Borg missing RG (you're just thinking in terms of majors), but what about Vilas avoiding surfaces other than clay? You've got nothing in your analogy that speaks to that.

In gymnastics there are several events that test a gymnast's skill. That might bring the analogy closer to the tennis situation, where surfaces make a difference. Let's say one gymnast (Vilas) enters mostly one type of test, I don't know what it should be, let's say pommel horse just to have something. He does enter other events, but not frequently, and when he does enter them and he meets the other guy (the one who missed the world championship), he always loses to him. In fact nobody knows for sure but his schedule may even give the appearance of avoiding this one man. Don't you think you'd at least want to look into the mastery that each man had in each of the individual tests, like pommel horse, floor exercise, parallel bars, rings, etc.?

And then you'd have a gymnastics situation with many medals won by both men. I don't think it would be helpful to take this analogy seriously enough to actually lay out all the events and medals in detail (better just to study tennis). But I am saying that it's more complex than two medals being greater than one.

In such a situation I can see how the more prolific gymnast (Vilas) would get some votes as #1, and how the other gymnast who competed less but had the better overall percentage and the best record in direct meetings with his competitors would also get votes -- especially how he might be the most feared or respected among his fellow gymnasts. I'm not surprised to hear that the players in 1977 voted for Borg, though I'd like to hear more about that poll if anyone has info on it.

Anyway, I'm not saying that surfaces always need to be looked at so closely in tennis. Sometimes tennis is just tennis. But when someone like Vilas or Muster arranges his schedule around a certain surface, that is just begging for surface mastery to be made an issue. It's what I've heard CyBorg saying: that Vilas' case for #1 rests largely on his many titles on red clay. So it does not seem trivial at all that Borg not only soundly beat him twice on red clay but compiled a 22-0 record himself on that surface. It just seems like the most natural thing to look at.

flying24 made an excellent point making a case for Borg, and I said so. I haven't as of yet gone and researched it, but it's far more than cyBorg has ever made.Ever made? He's made his argument(s) countless times; just search past threads.

Borg beat Vilas, blah, blah, blah. And you talk about dense. How many damn times have I said I'd take Borg 1977 over Vilas 1977 in a fair one??? Can you explain my reason for saying that???

Again Borg was better on red clay, why the hell are you telling me that?? Did I say he wasn't???No one doubts your position that Borg in 1977 was a better player than Vilas in direct confrontations. CyBorg is not telling you about red clay to get you to agree with that; you'd made it clear countless times. He's bringing in red clay as part of his whole overall argument about Borg having better results than Vilas. If you agree or disagree that red clay gives Borg the better results, then why not just say that, and give your reasons? The point about Borg beating Vilas in face-to-face competition is a dead point; everyone agrees on it.

380pistol
05-26-2009, 12:16 PM
It depends on the context. You wouldn't rate an athlete as the performer of the year for the pommel horse if this person won the gold at a depleted Olympics, but was clearly inferior to other player or players in alternate events. This is why we analyze, rather than merely add up numbers without any concern for what goes on.

We cannot assume that events have inherent value. Grand slam events, save for Wimbledon and the US Open did not have inherent value until years and years into the open era. For a variety of reasons - prize money, low attendance, and consecutive events such as WTT.

Conversely, you're taking the contemporary standard of what Roland Garros is and applying it indiscriminantly to 1977. By that equal logic, an event like Dallas has absolutely no value for that year, as it no longer exists.



This isn't gramatically correct, so I can't follow what you're saying.



First of all, take a deep breath. Second of all, the distinction is unnecessary. The best player in 1977 is the most accomplished player. In order to say with any degree of certitude that "player a" is better than "player b" in a particular year, we have to look at evidence for how "player a" performed in relation to "player b".



You're confused. Borg did not win Rome in 1977. Right away, you've got your facts wrong.

Now, in 1974 the French Open field was pretty strong - you can take a look at it here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1974_French_Open_-_Men's_Singles

I cannot say I understand what parallel it is you're drawing. Actually, I think you're pretty confused.



Before you criticize my comprehension of English, you may wish to get your spelling straight. Also, calling me an idiot is the last resort of a scoundrel.

So, are you telling me now that you would take Borg's 1977 over that of Vilas based on their respective accomplishments in that year? Your grammar here is pretty poor, so I can't say whether you're simply drudging up the same point you've already made before, or putting out something new.

This thread is quite explicitly about 1977, nothing else. This is all that is being talked about.


Wow you can dance. Harlem shaking, 2 stepping all over the place.

Again you keep taking who was better individually and who had better results. Time and time again, I have said if you feel Borg 1977 results were overall equal or superior to Vilas.. then show me. I'm open to hear it. Even flying24 has done a better job. You just say Borg coudn't do this, or Borg did that, but don't show how is results are superior Vilas. I've been saying and aking this for how long.

You say certain events were valued differently. Fine. Now relate that to Borg having a better year.

If one ("X") went to the olympics and gold, but "Y" boycotted., and won nothing. Yet "Y" won the world championships and "X" won the silver. "Y" then won AAA, BBB and CCC, and "X" won DDD and The Cross Continental Whatever(a major tournament like the US Open), 40 straight events, 50 straight events on a certain apparatus, the 2nd most tournament wins in the open era, the most idividaul wins in one season known (balance beam, horse, uneven bars etc.) are you still gonna tell me , well "Y" didn't go to the olympics???

I know you don't read what I said, cuz I spoke on RG and then have gone onto the whole year. You keep stayng on "red clay".

Anyway Vilas played in weaker Frnch field in 1977, fine. Wasn't the field weaker in 1974 as well. I mean the worlds best player who went 99-4 and didn't lose a match at any other slam wasn't there. But funny how I've see you hold that against Borg in the slightest regard. In fact now you've tried to justify it for him. The #1 player wasn't even there, are you serious???

Do you know what a "fair one" is??? I said Vilas may have been player of the year but that doesn't necessarily mean he was better than Borg.

But obviously you don't undertand this hence you say.....

"The best player in 1977 is the most accomplished player. In order to say with any degree of certitude that "player a" is better than "player b" in a particular year, we have to look at evidence for how "player a" performed in relation to "player b".

Uh uh. It's Player A's results, in relation to Player's B results, which I've been asking you to do for how long??? Holla at flying24, he's done a much better job. He's made a better case for Borg, and made me rethink certain things, I just haven't bothered to to research it fully. You run around with happy feet.

380pistol
05-26-2009, 12:24 PM
I once told you that I disliked analogies with other sports, though I didn't get into the reasons. One is that is they almost never fit the situation. Borg and Vilas played only tennis. It doesn't help to hear that Jordan missed basketball because he was playing golf -- or that Ali missed fights because he was in prison. There's just nothing like that in Borg/Vilas.

I tend to think that analogies almost always distract and confuse. Most of us here just want to talk about tennis, and it's a bit of a pain to feel that you have to look up facts about other sports merely to respond to an analogy, when the real meat that we want is the facts about the tennis situation. I feel like you're honestly wanting to know more about Borg/Vilas, but excuse the soapbox for a second, friend, you're not going to clarify your mind by reaching for analogies with other sports. Best just to read whatever you can about tennis in 1977 (throw in 1970-71 if you want), esp. those other threads that are linked to in the OP.

Now about the gymnastics, here's one analogy that it might help to break down, simply to show why it doesn't fit the tennis situation. Again I don't know that sport very well -- so try to stick to the basic general knowledge of that sport shared by everyone -- but it seems to me that at least outsiders regard the Olympics as the most prestigious event, more than any world championship. Perhaps gymnasts themselves feel that way, I don't even know that much. But if the Olympics is the big one, then that corresponds to Wimbledon, not the French Open.

You'd be better off imagining that one gymnast was absent from the World Championship (but still doing gymnastics, not golf or prison time) but that he did attend the Olympics and beat all his competition there.

In that case I can't automatically agree that his single gold is less valuable than the other man's gold and silver, partly because I don't know more about the sport -- and also because there are still other differences with the tennis situation. Your analogy is all about Borg missing RG (you're just thinking in terms of majors), but what about Vilas avoiding surfaces other than clay? You've got nothing in your analogy that speaks to that.

In gymnastics there are several events that test a gymnast's skill, so that might bring it closer to the tennis situation where surfaces make a difference. Let's say one gymnast (Vilas) enters mostly one type of test, I don't know what it should be, let's say pommel horse just to have something. He does enter other events, but not frequently, and when he does enter and he meets the other guy (the one who missed the world championship), he always loses to him. In fact nobody knows for sure but his schedule may even give the appearance of avoiding this one man. Don't you think you'd at least want to look into the mastery that each man had in each of the individual tests, like pommel horse, floor exercise, parallel bars, rings, etc.?

And then you'd have a gymnastics situation with many medals won by both men. I don't think it would be helpful to take this analogy seriously enough to actually lay out all the events and medals in detail (better just to study tennis). But I am saying that it's more complex than two medals being greater than one.

In such a situation I can see how the more prolific gymnast (Vilas) would get some votes as #1, and how the other gymnast who competed less but had the better overall percentage and the best record in direct meetings with his competitors would also get votes -- especially how he might be the most feared or respected among his fellow gymnasts. I'm not surprised to hear that the players in 1977 voted for Borg, though I'd like to hear more about that poll if anyone has info on it.

Anyway, I'm not saying that surfaces always need to be looked at so closely in tennis. Sometimes tennis is just tennis. But when someone like Vilas or Muster arranges his schedule around a certain surface, that is just begging for surface mastery to become an issue. It's what I've heard CyBorg saying -- that Vilas' case for #1 rests largely on his many titles on red clay. So it does not seem trivial at all that Borg not only soundly beat him twice on red clay but compiled a 22-0 record himself on that surface. It just seems like the most natural thing to look at.

Ever made? He's made his argument(s) countless times; just search past threads.

No one doubts your position that Borg in 1977 was a better player than Vilas in direct confrontations. CyBorg is not telling you about red clay to get you to agree with that; you'd made it clear countless times. He's bringing in red clay as part of his whole overall argument about Borg having better results than Vilas. If you agree or disagree that red clay gives Borg the better results, then why not just say that, and give your reasons? The point about Borg beating Vilas in face-to-face competition is a dead point; everyone agrees on it.

I get what you're saying. When the original question was posed I said Vilas, even knowing Borg didn't go to RG. Then he mentioned certain things that did not favour Borg, I didn't dispute. If he feels what Borg did overall, outside of the ATP, or at the moon for instance, that surpasses Borg, share. I'm open to hear it. Like I said flying24 did that, and it made me rethink things.

He keeps arguing that Borg was better on red clay. I never disputed that. Briniging it into the overall picture, he talked about that, indorr, and Wimbledon. Doesn't the entire picture include 134 wins for Vilas, 17 titles, the US Open, 53 straght on clay, 46 straight overall. if Borg matches that, euates that, has WTT or moon equvalents, I will listen. Again flying24 did a much better job of showing me than he has.

Back to red clay, Edberg in 1991, Wasn't the best on any particular surface. mabe hard, but Becker and Lendl may have cases. But from January 1st to December 31st he produced the best overall results. All I've said is if it's Borg show me how, not it can't be Borg.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 01:39 PM
Again you keep taking who was better individually and who had better results. Time and time again, I have said if you feel Borg 1977 results were overall equal or superior to Vilas.. then show me. I'm open to hear it. Even flying24 has done a better job. You just say Borg coudn't do this, or Borg did that, but don't show how is results are superior Vilas. I've been saying and aking this for how long.

You're not really addressing my points. You're just ignoring them and then pretending that I haven't made any.

What else can I show you? How can I be more specific? Is there something to my arguments that you take issue with? You're not giving me anything to work with here. I say things and you simply ignore them.

You say certain events were valued differently. Fine. Now relate that to Borg having a better year.

This is not even remotely clear. "Relate the fact that certain events were valued differently to Borg having a better year?"

Is this English? Valued differently than what? What events? The French Open? The fact that the French Open is valued differently than now? Valued differently than before the open era?

I've already explained what my abstraction is in regards to talking about Vilas and Borg. It minimizes the reliance on big events and tackles surfaces in a more dynamic way. Why not address this?

If one ("X") went to the olympics and gold, but "Y" boycotted., and won nothing. Yet "Y" won the world championships and "X" won the silver. "Y" then won AAA, BBB and CCC, and "X" won DDD and The Cross Continental Whatever(a major tournament like the US Open), 40 straight events, 50 straight events on a certain apparatus, the 2nd most tournament wins in the open era, the most idividaul wins in one season known (balance beam, horse, uneven bars etc.) are you still gonna tell me , well "Y" didn't go to the olympics???

This is nonsense. Perhaps this makes sense to you, but not to any reasonable individual. I don't know whether this "analogy" is intended to deceive or obscure all points altogether. You cannot just bring this up in place of an argument. It's incoherent.

I know you don't read what I said, cuz I spoke on RG and then have gone onto the whole year. You keep stayng on "red clay".

*sigh* "You spoke on RG and I keep staying on 'red clay'." This is what it says above. I don't know what this means, how it could in any way be logical and what exactly you hope to accomplish by saying this.

Anyway Vilas played in weaker Frnch field in 1977, fine. Wasn't the field weaker in 1974 as well. I mean the worlds best player who went 99-4 and didn't lose a match at any other slam wasn't there. But funny how I've see you hold that against Borg in the slightest regard. In fact now you've tried to justify it for him. The #1 player wasn't even there, are you serious???

Haven't I explained the difference already? Haven't I provided you with the event's draw? Why haven't you looked at it? Why are you asking me if the event is weaker? Where did I say it was weaker? And shouldn't you right around this point put the two-and-two together and begin to comprehend why my abstraction revolves around surfaces rather than singular events?

Do you know what a "fair one" is??? I said Vilas may have been player of the year but that doesn't necessarily mean he was better than Borg.

But obviously you don't undertand this hence you say.....

"The best player in 1977 is the most accomplished player. In order to say with any degree of certitude that "player a" is better than "player b" in a particular year, we have to look at evidence for how "player a" performed in relation to "player b".

Uh uh. It's Player A's results, in relation to Player's B results, which I've been asking you to do for how long??? Holla at flying24, he's done a much better job. He's made a better case for Borg, and made me rethink certain things, I just haven't bothered to to research it fully. You run around with happy feet.

Tell me what it means to you in a way that is concise - player of the year versus the player best in the year.

To me, the player of the year is the best player of the year. Because to be the best, a player has to have the accomplishments that would establish him as one.

I've discussed results quite a bit already. Your approach is simply to ignore the arguments and then pretend they were never made in the first place.

I would respect you more if you were just pulling my leg. You know, like a sadist would.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 01:41 PM
No one doubts your position that Borg in 1977 was a better player than Vilas in direct confrontations. CyBorg is not telling you about red clay to get you to agree with that; you'd made it clear countless times. He's bringing in red clay as part of his whole overall argument about Borg having better results than Vilas. If you agree or disagree that red clay gives Borg the better results, then why not just say that, and give your reasons? The point about Borg beating Vilas in face-to-face competition is a dead point; everyone agrees on it.

Notice that he hasn't addressed this point.

krosero
05-26-2009, 02:03 PM
Like I said flying24 did that, and it made me rethink things.What he did was to consider the Masters as a kind of major, which is why that argument may have more cred nowaways (with all the emphasis on majors). And the Masters was huge in those days, so in principle I've got no problem with that. Sports Illustrated ran a report on that Masters tournament where the author said that the Masters could have decided the #1 for year but unfortunately did nothing to clarify it, because of the particular results there. Urban has mentioned it too: if Borg had won the Masters, it could have given him the year; but instead Connors won it; and Vilas, with such great numbers throughout the year, beat Connors there but lost to Borg in the semis. Nothing was decided there.

If I understand CyBorg's arguments correctly, he's not just counting majors and the Masters. He's not just counting up titles. He's looking closely at draws. That's where the real detail is and what you need to look at, because 2 "small" titles against lesser competition don't necessarily out-strip one "big" title with a great draw.

You've asked often where Borg has the "equivalents" of Vilas' numbers, and whether WTT is such an equivalent. But there's more than that. Win/loss percentage is a stat, too. H2H is another stat. Record against the Top Ten is another (I'm not sure Borg wins that one).

And that's just numbers. Draws are a big factor. Who mastered the draws with the best quality? You've mentioned in this thread that RG is traditionally considered the premier claycourt tournament. Now, I'm all for tradition, but tradition won't automatically produce a great draw (money tends to do that; a standardized tour, without competing priorities like WTT, also helps). If a tournament is missing all the top players, then look for the tournament that they did attend (that's why everyone talks about Rome vs. Paris in 1971). I think it's the players that ultimately make a tournament. Tradition can add some pressure, but ultimately the greatest pressure comes from facing the best players.

On Tennis Channel they just showed a RG documentary where the Musketeers produced an uproar when Tilden was suspended and they faced the possibility of defending the Davis Cup for the first time without having to face him. They wanted to face the best, which meant Tilden. Anything else was unthinkable to them.

So Tilden was allowed to play, and they beat him.

Borgforever
05-26-2009, 02:19 PM
Great post krosero. Back in the day the No. 1 ranked player was the best player on the planet -- not just a cheater who raked in a billion wins on one surface against the lower ranked players, entering weak fields, piling on his record to outshine his rivals who played more balanced year over the surfaces.

What Vilas did in 1977 is forbidden and impossible today and has no creditability whatsoever and the loophole that helped Guillermo disappeared with the plain explanation that it's not fair, it's cheating and it makes the "numbers lie" to quote Bud Collins in 1978. And still after all these years still some people think that the cheater was best and had the best record when, on closer inspection, absolutely everything speaks in favor of Borg, greater wins, surface versatility, surface dominace and records on surfaces, biggest wins (i. e. against the strongest fields), best game-loss percentage, best H2H-stat over the top ten -- I mean the facts and the records speak only for Borg and this is a guy who was injured at USO.

If the French Muskeeters would've played in 1977 they would never act like Vilas. Honour, honesty, intelligence and integrity was more important to them...

krosero
05-26-2009, 02:21 PM
Wasn't the field weaker in 1974 as well. I mean the worlds best player who went 99-4 and didn't lose a match at any other slam wasn't there. But funny how I've see you hold that against Borg in the slightest regard. In fact now you've tried to justify it for him. The #1 player wasn't even there, are you serious???Actually Connors' numbers in 1974 are another example of how the early Open Era is not a simple matter of picking out the bigger numbers. Yes, Connors went 99-4, with 3 majors, and he's the player of the year, no questions asked. But he won most of those matches on the easier Bill Riordan tour. In '74 the players below Connors don't come close to his numbers, so there's no question about who was #1. But if the second-best player had put up, let's say, 75 wins with 4 losses on the regular tour, with many more wins over Top Ten players (I think Connors had just a few wins over Top Tenners), then I just might give that player, not Connors, the top spot.

Of course it would depend on what happens at the majors, and if Connors still takes his 3 Slams, he'd still get POY. But if he gets only 1 or 2, and the other player posts those other numbers against greater competition, I don't know, it might be close.

Anyway Connors' overall numbers don't make him the prohibitive favorite at RG in '74. Some people think that he would have been the favorite, and that's fine. If that takes away from the luster of Borg's victory at the '74 RG, then so be it. I don't think it does (because I don't like Jimmy's chances to win it), but the point is, if it takes away from Borg's '74 victory, then it takes away from Vilas' 77 victory.

krosero
05-26-2009, 02:29 PM
Great post krosero. Back in the day the No. 1 ranked player was the best player on the planet -- not just a cheater who raked in a billion wins on one surface against the lower ranked players, entering weak fields, piling on his record to outshine his rivals who played more balanced year over the surfaces.

What Vilas did in 1977 is forbidden and impossible today and has no creditability whatsoever and the loophole that helped Guillermo disappeared with the plain explanation that it's not fair, it's cheating and it makes the "numbers lie" to quote Bud Collins in 1978. And still after all these years still some people think that the cheater was best and had the best record when, on closer inspection, absolutely everything speaks in favor of Borg, greater wins, surface versatility, surface dominace and records on surfaces, biggest wins (i. e. against the strongest fields), best game-loss percentage, best H2H-stat over the top ten -- I mean the facts and the records speak only for Borg and this is a guy who was injured at USO.

If the French Muskeeters would've played in 1977 they would never act like Vilas. Honour, honesty, intelligence and integrity was more important to them...I can't agree with what you say about Vilas. He was just compiling the best record he could, doing what was perfectly permitted, no different from any tennis player.

I do think, though, that our ideas about Player of the Year have changed over the years -- and I'm talking about the really long course of things, back to the start of the 20th century. Wasn't there some post around here, maybe by Carlo, about how absurd some of the rankings could be way back around 1900, when someone could be named player of the year without playing a single match? I presume that he got those votes because he was regarded as the best, the most skilled, something like that.

I do remember just a few days ago Carlo posted something about how head-to-head records were more important in what he called "ancient" times, as compared to now.

Now, as we keep repeating, it's all about majors.

I'd like to hear more about this, about changing standards.

Vilas has a better-looking year according to current standards. But a lot of people voted for him back then, too. And voted for Borg. If we don't know why people voted for Borg back then, I'd like to know maybe to what degree they did so because certain things mattered to them, more than they matter to us.

Borgforever
05-26-2009, 03:26 PM
Well -- the Vilas situation created a great stir at the end of 1977 and they tried and successfully changed and standardized the tour to avoid absurdities like this. It was both an iniative from the players as well as the leaders of the tennis tour infrastructure. Ther vote for Borg as year end No. 1 by the players was enormous -- the majority saying Vilas used the system and lack of regulation for his own selfish purpose -- not caring for how it looked. Eddie Dibbs, a good clay-courter (in contrast to Mottram and Franulovic) was very critical and outspoken regarding Vilas decisions.

Just because one thing is allowed one year doesn't make it ok to pursue. There's one thing called "ethics" and I for one wants to try and enhance and promote fair play and respect for your peers as an prerequisite ideal.

I don't think Vilas is an evil guy who schemed like a Bond-villain in 1977 but to me it's still cheating even if he was in the green to do this at the time. I mean Jimbo ran around to Corrado's side ouf the court and wiped away the mark of the bounce on the Har Tru clay in the USO SF 1977 -- I don't know if there's any such rule prohibiting such a behaviour but its cheating to me anyways -- even if Jimbo did it as an attempt at humour.

My view is that you should try really hard to act with responsability and honesty -- if you're put in front of a situation where there's a choice between one thing that's okey and another that you recognize as "very questionable" even though it's not outright fobidden at the time one should avoid the unethical one. You still know that the other option is questionable and you would lie to yourself if disregard that. And lies corrupts thinking and eats away at your self-esteem and in the long run contributes to a weaker psyche unless your a sociopath of course...

Luckily the cheat didn't work on his fellow players and the many observers of tennis and they corrected the wrongs in the system because of Vilas actions. I don't think that reflects very well on Guillermo Vilas that his achievements directly led to a change because his actions wasn't deemed fair...

Why was anyone backing Vilas at all back in 1977? Well, it was a confusing time -- like basically every year almost in the 1970s so it was nothing new -- but the players screamed in protest like one man. If one had polled observers about 1977 a couple of years later the list of Vilas-supporters would've shrunk dramatically. The tour was, like the early to mid-70s, so confusing with practically new strange absurdities occurring every year. It wasn't the same dilemma at all in those years -- beyond that standardization and regulation was lacking in the extreme. Jimbo had almost done the same in 1974 (avoid deep fields brim-filled with top tenners and playing Mickey Mouse-tourneys all over the place) and was severely criticized which led to Connors tour changes in 1975 and onwards.

I give Jimbo much more credit though because what I saw of his play that year was IMO great -- not like Vilas, who IMO made one serious quality win that year (his USO-final against Connors) and it still wasn't as great as Jimbo's Wimby/USO-1974-level or Borg's or Ashe's or Orantes for that matter in those years. Connors wasn't as great on Har Tru as he was on grass, hardcourt cement or indoors. It's not like Vilas beat Borg in the RG-final or Vilas straight-setted Sampras in the 1999 Wimby-final. Nothing that impressive...

Also RG 1974-75-76 had a great red clay field -- better than 1977. When one scrutinizes the field there's two factors to look for in determining strength:

1) Are the top contenders to win the title in the field present? I mean to have John Newcombe in the 1974 RG-draw is good but more important -- is Orantes there? Barrazzutti? Ramirez? Panatta? Vilas? Borg? Dibbs? Solomon? Bottom line: Are the true surface contenders playing the tourney. These names don't have the same lustre on grass in the draw. That doesn't carry the same weight on grass or hardcourt cement or indoors. Then the names should be Ashe, Roche, Newk, Jimbo, Borg, Tanner and so forth. Not hard to grasp if you're normally intelligent. Also important to notice is that these surface-contenders should be in good form -- they don't have to show supreme form but if they're injured, playing poor and not in any way up to their usual standards it of course devalues any victory against them a bit -- not totally since it's their responsibility to be their best but still -- beating Sampras in 1999 at Wimby carries more weight than Bastl's achievement in 2002 and no-ones disputing this...

2) The Top Tenners doesn't necessarily mean a deep field but if the No. 1 criteria is filled, like above, to truly cement the strength of the field the top tenners should appear -- maybe they won't even reach the semis because it's not their preferred surface -- but they're still so great that they at least could give the specialists trouble and drain their energies making it tougher for the eventual winners. case in point: Joakim Nyström, a good clay-court baseliner with great Borg/Connors-like return-skills on serve but a weak server himself were not considered to be a major threat on grass or even a semis contender but in 1985 he faced Boris Becker in top form when he served like an absolute madman. You can check out yourself what a Becker's (on paper/in theory) blowout-victory turned into...

Look at Dibbs record against Vilas in 1977. He got two sets from Vilas and was competitive in their H2Hs on clay and other surfaces. Not so against Borg. The last time they met in 77 on clay -- only one week after being close to Vilas on clay he lost to Borg with 6-0, 6-0, 6-4...

Take a wild guess who Dibbs voted for as year end No. 1 in 1977?

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 04:30 PM
I can say one thing about Vilas - I am glad that he won RG. He deservedly won it. Had Borg played in RG in 1977 and won it (surely), I'm sure Vilas would have been desperate in 1982 and taken it then.

It was meant to be.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 04:37 PM
Anyway Connors' overall numbers don't make him the prohibitive favorite at RG in '74. Some people think that he would have been the favorite, and that's fine. If that takes away from the luster of Borg's victory at the '74 RG, then so be it. I don't think it does (because I don't like Jimmy's chances to win it), but the point is, if it takes away from Borg's '74 victory, then it takes away from Vilas' 77 victory.

Saying that Connors would have won RG in 1974 would be unreasonable. Certainly it's possible he would have, or could have won it. But it's a hypothetical. There were no indicators or predictors in 1974 that Connors would be effective at the event, let alone have a strong chance of winning it.

The Borg situation in 1977 is different. There is no need for a hypothetical, because it is a fact that he was great on clay, as there were other indicators based on actual red clay events.

Therefore I find these comparisons to be maddening. Fruitless. Unfair.

Krosero - do you know when Connors was informed that he would be banned from participating in Roland Garros? I am curious if that news is what propelled him to avoid red clay events that year altogether. I'm not exactly sure why he completely avoided these tournaments. Not even one in the summer.

Then again, I have only superficial knowledge of the Riordan tour, how long it lasted and whether it allowed for any clay events at all.

Borgforever
05-26-2009, 04:42 PM
This I also agree with. Vilas was one of the greatest red clay players ever and it would be sad indeed to see him without any success on his fave surface. If Borg had went with hockey instead of tennis Vilas would've won almost as much as Borg on the red dirt, maybe clipping RG 74, 75, 77, 78 or more...

That's why it's also interesting to note that Borg came along and handled such a great clay-courter like Vilas in the manner in which he did -- making Guillermo's awesome skills and achievements on the red dirt pale to white in comparison...

But it would look wrong for Vilas not having an RG-title. But it looks really wrong for Rosewall, Lendl and Pancho Gonzales when it comes to Wimby...

krosero
05-26-2009, 05:31 PM
Krosero - do you know when Connors was informed that he would be banned from participating in Roland Garros? I am curious if that news is what propelled him to avoid red clay events that year altogether. I'm not exactly sure why he completely avoided these tournaments. Not even one in the summer.It's a question I have myself, I don't know.

I can say one thing about Vilas - I am glad that he won RG. He deservedly won it. I recently saw that RG final and I felt the same way, that there was justice in a claycourter of his caliber winning at least once there. And he'd lost his only two Slam finals before that, both in straight sets; it was a key victory for his confidence.

Moose Malloy
05-26-2009, 05:33 PM
Krosero - do you know when Connors was informed that he would be banned from participating in Roland Garros? I am curious if that news is what propelled him to avoid red clay events that year altogether. I'm not exactly sure why he completely avoided these tournaments. Not even one in the summer.


why should he have? after the french there were no more significant red clay events left. I really doubt Jimmy(or pretty much anyone) based their schedule on 'what surfaces haven't I won on yet this year'
who cares about Bastad or Kitzbuhl?

As I mentioned before it was mostly just about money back then (as WTT, WCT, & the many, many high profile exos of that time show), wherever it was the top players would be, regardless of surface. Indoor surfaces were probably the most significant surfaces of that era(due to all those big money WCT events), not red clay. The Masters was such a big deal back than because of the money as well(there was a bonus pool in addition to the prize money)

FYI, the US Claycourts in Indy were a pretty big deal back then(regardless of it not being red clay) And JC won it in '74. I think it may have had a bigger winner's check than RG that year.

here is an excerpt from detailed article in SI from '04 on Jimmy's '74(anyone know exactly how much of that '99-4' record included Riordan matches?)

If Riordan only filed suit on May 30, I wonder how serious they were about wanting to play RG. Wouldn't be surprised if there was a lot more to this story that we'll never know. 100 k was an enormous amount for pro athletes back then(I don't think anyone in the NBA got paid that much back then! and Connors was getting it to just joke around for a few weeks...maybe this seems like a bad decision in retrospect, but I wonder how many pros from that time would have done the same in his shoes. Laver & many others knew it was a posibility they would be banned from majors by playing WCT in '71/'72, yet still did so. the 'prestige' of the majors alone wasn't going to provide for your future)

As Connors did his solitary best to vulgarize the sport, World Team Tennis did the same on a mass scale. WTT permitted virtually anything during matches, from player substitutions to coaching, cheering and outright heckling. But WTT alarmed the Europeans with more than bad taste. Its spring season conflicted with the gemstone events on the Continent, the Italian and French Opens, and European constituents of the International Tennis Federation (ITF) feared an exodus of the top pros. After Connors signed with WTT's Baltimore Banners, the French Tennis Federation (FTF) barred him from Roland Garros, thereby foreclosing any chance for him to pick up the second leg of the Grand Slam. Riordan filed suit on May 30 to lift the ban, and a day later there was Connors in the Palais de Justice in Paris, cheeky as ever, saying, "I'm in the wrong court. I should be on clay."

The lawyer for the FTF asserted the federation's right to invite or not invite anyone it so desired. He called WTT "a vast circus" and "an obnoxious, disruptive organization ... not sport, but show business, like the Harlem Globetrotters." On the possibility that Connors, the plaintiff, might be deprived of a chance to win a Grand Slam, a spokesman for the FTF sniffed, "This is not a question of persons but of principle." At his seat Connors doodled. English Leather, the cologne company, had put up a $100,000 prize for anyone who completed the Slam, and that happened to be precisely the sum the Banners were contracted to pay Connors, so the French judge plausibly ruled that Connors's livelihood faced no "emergency." Score one for the establishment--Connors would not play in Paris--but the game's rear guard would count few victories for the rest of the year.

Suing the French tennis bureaucracy was one thing. But on the eve of Wimbledon word reached London that Riordan and Connors, charging that the players' union (ATP) was in cahoots with the ITF, had sued Dell and Jack Kramer, the lawyer for and director of the ATP, respectively, and both prominent opponents of World Team Tennis. To those who regarded the union as essentially the sum of its members, Connors was suing virtually every male tennis pro--"127 defendants and me," as it were. The suit, which charged interference with Connors's ability to make a living, also named the sport's main sponsor, the multinational insurance company Commercial Union. "That suit cost [the ATP] about $100,000 in legal fees," says retired pro John Newcombe, who recalls seeing crude graffiti about Connors and Evert in locker rooms that year. " Riordan always had his own agenda, and he was using Jimmy to implement it. It was a sort of unsavory start to a guy's career."

Ashe, a stalwart of the players' union, wrote in his diary, "I swear, every time I passed Connors in the locker room today, it took all my will power not to punch him in the mouth."

Within a few years Connors and Riordan would be in litigation with each other. "I was used in a lot of ways," Connors says today. "I was just a young kid trying to win. But basically Riordan was good. He could make a chicken sitting on an egg sound exciting. He was the only guy--he and Lamar Hunt--with the guts to go the other way."



http://vault.sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1104307/3/index.htm

krosero
05-26-2009, 05:47 PM
Well -- the Vilas situation created a great stir at the end of 1977 and they tried and successfully changed and standardized the tour to avoid absurdities like this. It was both an iniative from the players as well as the leaders of the tennis tour infrastructure. Ther vote for Borg as year end No. 1 by the players was enormous -- the majority saying Vilas used the system and lack of regulation for his own selfish purpose -- not caring for how it looked. Eddie Dibbs, a good clay-courter (in contrast to Mottram and Franulovic) was very critical and outspoken regarding Vilas decisions.

Just because one thing is allowed one year doesn't make it ok to pursue. There's one thing called "ethics" and I for one wants to try and enhance and promote fair play and respect for your peers as an prerequisite ideal.

I don't think Vilas is an evil guy who schemed like a Bond-villain in 1977 but to me it's still cheating even if he was in the green to do this at the time. I mean Jimbo ran around to Corrado's side ouf the court and wiped away the mark of the bounce on the Har Tru clay in the USO SF 1977 -- I don't know if there's any such rule prohibiting such a behaviour but its cheating to me anyways -- even if Jimbo did it as an attempt at humour.

My view is that you should try really hard to act with responsability and honesty -- if you're put in front of a situation where there's a choice between one thing that's okey and another that you recognize as "very questionable" even though it's not outright fobidden at the time one should avoid the unethical one. You still know that the other option is questionable and you would lie to yourself if disregard that. And lies corrupts thinking and eats away at your self-esteem and in the long run contributes to a weaker psyche unless your a sociopath of course...

Luckily the cheat didn't work on his fellow players and the many observers of tennis and they corrected the wrongs in the system because of Vilas actions. I don't think that reflects very well on Guillermo Vilas that his achievements directly led to a change because his actions wasn't deemed fair...

Why was anyone backing Vilas at all back in 1977? Well, it was a confusing time -- like basically every year almost in the 1970s so it was nothing new -- but the players screamed in protest like one man. If one had polled observers about 1977 a couple of years later the list of Vilas-supporters would've shrunk dramatically. The tour was, like the early to mid-70s, so confusing with practically new strange absurdities occurring every year. It wasn't the same dilemma at all in those years -- beyond that standardization and regulation was lacking in the extreme. Jimbo had almost done the same in 1974 (avoid deep fields brim-filled with top tenners and playing Mickey Mouse-tourneys all over the place) and was severely criticized which led to Connors tour changes in 1975 and onwards.

I give Jimbo much more credit though because what I saw of his play that year was IMO great -- not like Vilas, who IMO made one serious quality win that year (his USO-final against Connors) and it still wasn't as great as Jimbo's Wimby/USO-1974-level or Borg's or Ashe's or Orantes for that matter in those years. Connors wasn't as great on Har Tru as he was on grass, hardcourt cement or indoors. It's not like Vilas beat Borg in the RG-final or Vilas straight-setted Sampras in the 1999 Wimby-final. Nothing that impressive...

Also RG 1974-75-76 had a great red clay field -- better than 1977. When one scrutinizes the field there's two factors to look for in determining strength:

1) Are the top contenders to win the title in the field present? I mean to have John Newcombe in the 1974 RG-draw is good but more important -- is Orantes there? Barrazzutti? Ramirez? Panatta? Vilas? Borg? Dibbs? Solomon? Bottom line: Are the true surface contenders playing the tourney. These names don't have the same lustre on grass in the draw. That doesn't carry the same weight on grass or hardcourt cement or indoors. Then the names should be Ashe, Roche, Newk, Jimbo, Borg, Tanner and so forth. Not hard to grasp if you're normally intelligent. Also important to notice is that these surface-contenders should be in good form -- they don't have to show supreme form but if they're injured, playing poor and not in any way up to their usual standards it of course devalues any victory against them a bit -- not totally since it's their responsibility to be their best but still -- beating Sampras in 1999 at Wimby carries more weight than Bastl's achievement in 2002 and no-ones disputing this...

2) The Top Tenners doesn't necessarily mean a deep field but if the No. 1 criteria is filled, like above, to truly cement the strength of the field the top tenners should appear -- maybe they won't even reach the semis because it's not their preferred surface -- but they're still so great that they at least could give the specialists trouble and drain their energies making it tougher for the eventual winners. case in point: Joakim Nyström, a good clay-court baseliner with great Borg/Connors-like return-skills on serve but a weak server himself were not considered to be a major threat on grass or even a semis contender but in 1985 he faced Boris Becker in top form when he served like an absolute madman. You can check out yourself what a Becker's (on paper/in theory) blowout-victory turned into...

Look at Dibbs record against Vilas in 1977. He got two sets from Vilas and was competitive in their H2Hs on clay and other surfaces. Not so against Borg. The last time they met in 77 on clay -- only one week after being close to Vilas on clay he lost to Borg with 6-0, 6-0, 6-4...

Take a wild guess who Dibbs voted for as year end No. 1 in 1977?I'd still reserve the word "cheating" for when standing rules are broken (at least in sports; it does have a broader meaning in life and relationships). If cheating in sports means things other than breaking the actual rules, then what word will be used when the actual rules are broken?

I think Vilas took advantage of a situation, nothing more. Did it look bad for the sport, or was it unfair? Well maybe, though IMO a lot of things are questionable or unfair, without being cheating.

Am I glad the rules were changed? Of course.

This does make me wonder about the player poll. How much of it was motivated by political concerns, I mean as a rebuke to the system? Sure, there's enough evidence that Borg's record was regarded on its own as comparable to Vilas' and Connors'. That's fine. But the players surely had more on their minds than who had the best forehands and backhands. I would think they knew that a vote for Vilas would not be helpful in bringing about any change, but again I'd still like to learn more about this.

If you know of a webpage or other source about the poll, I'd appreciate it.

CyBorg
05-26-2009, 08:14 PM
why should he have? after the french there were no more significant red clay events left. I really doubt Jimmy(or pretty much anyone) based their schedule on 'what surfaces haven't I won on yet this year'
who cares about Bastad or Kitzbuhl?

Agreed 100%. More curious about the pre-RG events though and why Jimmy didn't play one.

FYI, the US Claycourts in Indy were a pretty big deal back then(regardless of it not being red clay) And JC won it in '74. I think it may have had a bigger winner's check than RG that year.

Agreed. Big event and even though the US Open was still on grass, har-tru was already a huge part of the tour. Boston was another huge har-tru event.

here is an excerpt from detailed article in SI from '04 on Jimmy's '74(anyone know exactly how much of that '99-4' record included Riordan matches?)

If Riordan only filed suit on May 30, I wonder how serious they were about wanting to play RG. Wouldn't be surprised if there was a lot more to this story that we'll never know. 100 k was an enormous amount for pro athletes back then(I don't think anyone in the NBA got paid that much back then! and Connors was getting it to just joke around for a few weeks...maybe this seems like a bad decision in retrospect, but I wonder how many pros from that time would have done the same in his shoes. Laver & many others knew it was a posibility they would be banned from majors by playing WCT in '71/'72, yet still did so. the 'prestige' of the majors alone wasn't going to provide for your future)

Thanks for the link. This the kind of context that is so important and there's still so many things I don't know or fail to remember about these times.

Borgforever
05-26-2009, 08:43 PM
Do I believe Vilas was a villain who committed serious transgressions in 1977?

No. I see his mistake as relatively mild. In my book it's cheating but of a milder kind than many, many other things. I see it as wrong from a sportsman's perspective. I don't harbor any direct negative feelings towards Guillermo either. He's a cool guy who I enjoyed watching many times and he's also a long time friend of Björn. But I follow principles rather than being in a awe of everything a certain person does and that definitely includes The Ice Man too (I’m strongly critical about certain things he did as well) – and don’t forget, I have Vilas and Borg as co-No. 1s since even though I think the evidence out there speaks to Borg Vilas still made an exceptional performance and I do want to credit that. Vilas won an amazing amount of stuff in 77 regardless of shenigans.

From what I heard (Björn strongly implies this) Ion Tiriac was maybe the man behind Vilas-scheme -- much like how Riordan and Hunt used and manipulated Jimbo early on. It's hard for such young men to find footing and always do the right judgement call under those insane, contradictive tennis days as the 70s represented. I'm not a guy who likes to punish people either. I dislike the behaviour -- not the man. Everyone can make mistakes. And Vilas, from what I heard, was a sensitive guy, dominated in good and bad ways by Tiriac and Guillermo was not prone to grandiose FU-I-GO-MY-OWN-WAY-manners...

Although I must say I was a little incensed again when Vilas dissed and snubbed at Nadal's clay-court streak as nothing in comparison to his just a few years ago -- when it's plainly clear that Rafa's streak has much more creditability. That was very biased and a silly comment IMO...

The best Vilas for me? YEC Masters at Kooyong in 1974. There was a super-Guillermo if ever there was one. I wonder where he went...

According to Hellberg and a few others of the players I talked to (Hellberg had surveyed the players positions after the 77 ATP vote and it seemed Borg got (ballpark figures) around 75 % of the votes and Jimbo around 20 % and around Vilas 5 %...

Was the vote political? Who can say and to what extent. I know the irritation was great among the majority of lower ranked players who didn't get the opportunity to surf the parallel tours like Connors, Borg and Vilas could. They were forced to just roll with craziness-currents without any individual choice. I think it was an amalgam of several things and that the political element was probably in there somewhere along with peoples honest opinions. I also think that close friends of Vilas or any other player might've voted straight out of their bias regardless of what they believed deep down. In any case, it was up to them and since they knew first-hand and were so many from many different countries I think their verdict carries vital weight in question.

Jimbo got a lot of cred from the players since he had shown maturity in mending his ways a lot from that arrogant bully attitude from his starting years (a manner probably encouraged by Riordan and such). Usually arrogant, immature people have a hard time admitting that they made any mistakes -- only grown-ups can show such strength and humility. The players and everyone thought he made a better year than Vilas (almost won Wimby, USO and won Masters) and since Borg was injured at USO there were some people going for Jimbo (this I actually understand a little more than Vilas)...

Actually it seemed that the clay-court specialists were the most angry at Vilas "scheduling". I would believe that the faster surface-specialists would head the uproar. I haven't searched the internet in the subject so I don't know if there's any extensive text on this issue on the net…

Also when I mentioned surface contenders I can’t believe I forgot to mention Ilie Nastase. Grave error on my part to leave out one of the finest players of the 70s on practically every surface and for that I’m sorry…

Excellent article that Moose linked to. Thanks. Really admire SI -- except when it comes to Lendl...

380pistol
05-26-2009, 09:50 PM
You're not really addressing my points. You're just ignoring them and then pretending that I haven't made any.

What else can I show you? How can I be more specific? Is there something to my arguments that you take issue with? You're not giving me anything to work with here. I say things and you simply ignore them.



This is not even remotely clear. "Relate the fact that certain events were valued differently to Borg having a better year?"

Is this English? Valued differently than what? What events? The French Open? The fact that the French Open is valued differently than now? Valued differently than before the open era?

I've already explained what my abstraction is in regards to talking about Vilas and Borg. It minimizes the reliance on big events and tackles surfaces in a more dynamic way. Why not address this?



This is nonsense. Perhaps this makes sense to you, but not to any reasonable individual. I don't know whether this "analogy" is intended to deceive or obscure all points altogether. You cannot just bring this up in place of an argument. It's incoherent.



*sigh* "You spoke on RG and I keep staying on 'red clay'." This is what it says above. I don't know what this means, how it could in any way be logical and what exactly you hope to accomplish by saying this.



Haven't I explained the difference already? Haven't I provided you with the event's draw? Why haven't you looked at it? Why are you asking me if the event is weaker? Where did I say it was weaker? And shouldn't you right around this point put the two-and-two together and begin to comprehend why my abstraction revolves around surfaces rather than singular events?



Tell me what it means to you in a way that is concise - player of the year versus the player best in the year.

To me, the player of the year is the best player of the year. Because to be the best, a player has to have the accomplishments that would establish him as one.

I've discussed results quite a bit already. Your approach is simply to ignore the arguments and then pretend they were never made in the first place.

I would respect you more if you were just pulling my leg. You know, like a sadist would.

No. You've said Borg was unablle to do this, or he did that. But not related to Vilas and show how they superceed or even equate them.

OK Borg won what events, they are valued as what?? Vilas won what and what are they valued at?? Who won more?? Who won what was more significant?? Compare streaks, length, and also how it was accomplished?? The whole package. Wins, wins to tournaments entered. Where have you done that???

Again all you say is the French Open??? Yeah cuz that was the only tournament Vials won in 1977?!?


If one ("X") went to the olympics and won gold, but "Y" boycotted, and won nothing. Yet "Y" won the world championships and "X" won the silver. "Y" then won tournaments AAA, BBB and CCC, and "X" won tournaments DDD and The Cross Continental Whatever(a major tournament like the US Open), also won 40 straight events, 50 straight events on a certain apparatus, the 2nd most tournament wins in the open era, the most total idividaul wins in one season known (balance beam, horse, uneven bars etc.) are you still gonna tell me, well "Y" didn't go to the olympics???

Now this is nonsense, why?? Cuz you have no retort???

This analogy is as plain as day, as I am taking the overall package, and you aren't.

You said Borg didn't go to Rome and won tournamnets on red clay with a deeper field than RG. Did I dispute?? No. But you've been going on about that for how long now???

Borg and others didn't go to RG in 1977, and you claim the draw was weaker. Fine, it probably was.
Connors (and others may have) not gone to RG in 1974... are you gonna tell me that made the fdraw stronger??? But feel free to spew your 101 reasons why Borg missing 1977 French made it weaker, but Connors missing the 1974 French didn't.

Player Of The Year is the one who accomplished the most. Or one could say have the best reults over the best period of time. Best player is who is the best skilled, and also the best mono a mono. Sometimes they are the both same sometimes they aren't. In the 1992-93 NBA season the MVP was Barkley. From November to the end of April he produced the best results. But the consesus was the best player in the league was Jordan.

I had the same discussion. In 1999 Agassi was Player Of The Year. From January 1st to December 31st, nobody did more than him. but the best player was Sampras. Agassi couldn't beat him. If Sampras 1999 and Agassi 1999 had to play a mtch for life, I would take Sampras. But Pete wasn't the Player of The Year, cuz he wasn't there the whole year through injuries.
Vilas may have been player of the year in 1977 cuz he may have done the most over those 365 days, some say Connors was 32. but if I had o pick one man from 1977 to play for life it would be Borg. Barkley was MVP in 1992-93, but if I was a coach and I could pick 1 of the over approx. 430 players that suited up that year to play game 7 of the finals based on what they did that year, I'm taking MJ over Charles.

There are times the best player may not put up, or get the chance to put up #'s (results) due to injury, circumstance, or whatever, so he may not be player of the year, MVP or whatever, but that doesn't automatically dismiss him/her from being the best.

grafselesfan
05-26-2009, 09:57 PM
I think another example that parallels is 2003 for women. Henin proved she was now the best on clay, even when both Williams played. However she had yet to prove she could Serena, or even Venus for that matter, on any non clay surface. Because of this even though Henin ended the year #1 with 2 majors, most still considered Serena the best player in the world at years end except on clay. However because Serena and Venus both had to miss the year after Wimbledon with injuries, and Henin added her dominant summer and strong fall including the U.S Open title to her French Open title, 2 slam semis, and other accolades for the year, she was the deserving #1 of the year. So another instance you had one player most considered the best in the world by years end, mostly since apart from one surface the #1 couldnt yet beat her head to head. However the deserving #1 was the player who posted the best overall results for the year, and that was someone else.

What you always hope is the deserving #1, the computer ranked #1, and the true best player at the time are all one in the same. The way Sampras was many times, Graf many times, Seles in 91 and 92, Federer many times, Hewitt in 2001 and 2002 probably, Nadal was clearly last year and so far this year, Henin in 2006 and 2007 (well 2006 is close). However that is not always how it is. Sometimes the 3 are all a different individual.

380pistol
05-26-2009, 10:08 PM
What he did was to consider the Masters as a kind of major, which is why that argument may have more cred nowaways (with all the emphasis on majors). And the Masters was huge in those days, so in principle I've got no problem with that. Sports Illustrated ran a report on that Masters tournament where the author said that the Masters could have decided the #1 for year but unfortunately did nothing to clarify it, because of the particular results there. Urban has mentioned it too: if Borg had won the Masters, it could have given him the year; but instead Connors won it; and Vilas, with such great numbers throughout the year, beat Connors there but lost to Borg in the semis. Nothing was decided there.

If I understand CyBorg's arguments correctly, he's not just counting majors and the Masters. He's not just counting up titles. He's looking closely at draws. That's where the real detail is and what you need to look at, because 2 "small" titles against lesser competition don't necessarily out-strip one "big" title with a great draw.

You've asked often where Borg has the "equivalents" of Vilas' numbers, and whether WTT is such an equivalent. But there's more than that. Win/loss percentage is a stat, too. H2H is another stat. Record against the Top Ten is another (I'm not sure Borg wins that one).

And that's just numbers. Draws are a big factor. Who mastered the draws with the best quality? You've mentioned in this thread that RG is traditionally considered the premier claycourt tournament. Now, I'm all for tradition, but tradition won't automatically produce a great draw (money tends to do that; a standardized tour, without competing priorities like WTT, also helps). If a tournament is missing all the top players, then look for the tournament that they did attend (that's why everyone talks about Rome vs. Paris in 1971). I think it's the players that ultimately make a tournament. Tradition can add some pressure, but ultimately the greatest pressure comes from facing the best players.

On Tennis Channel they just showed a RG documentary where the Musketeers produced an uproar when Tilden was suspended and they faced the possibility of defending the Davis Cup for the first time without having to face him. They wanted to face the best, which meant Tilden. Anything else was unthinkable to them.

So Tilden was allowed to play, and they beat him.

See this what your missing. You said "That's where the real detail is and what you need to look at, because 2 "small" titles against lesser competition don't necessarily out-strip one "big" title with a great draw."

At what point did I ever disput that?? I haven't. He's arguing things I'm not disputing. I just made him look like a hypocrite. he wants to make note that Borg didn't participate in 1977 fine. But have you eve heard him say anyhing remotely resembling that about world #1, 3 slam winner Connors not playing in the 1974 French Opemn??? Funny... look who won that?!? The blade has gotta cut both ways.

Now he made a point, a ran like a snivelling coward after I took him outta the Park like Pujols!! He, again HE, yes CYBORG, drew a parrallel between Emmerson and Laver in 1967, about who was Player Of The Year as Laver didn't win (or play) in any slams. That's too easy. I can simply point out Laver won 3 slam equivalents (French, US and Wembly Pro), on 3 different surfaces I believe (clay, grass and wood), won what 15 tournaments, and dealt with guys like Rosewall. Then I can point out Laver was #1 as an amateur and swept all 4 slam in 1962, but what happened when he turned pro, and had to deal with Rosewall and Hoad??? That in itself shows the differenc between the amateurs and pros, during that time.

Now if he said Borg did this, and in relation to Vilas it means that, and at the end Borg comes out ahead, the Borg comes out ahead. But when has he done that??? That's all I've asked for. If Borg won with deeper draws than Vilas, fine. How many, what is it worth (more, less, equal) in terms of what Vilas did. Borg won this straight on red clay, Vilas won that straight on all clay, Borg's means what and why?? Vilas' means what and why?? He's talked about Borg winning some indoor tournaments, yet I haven't heard him speak on any of the 17 tourneys Vilas won. Compare them and show me what means what. That's all I've been asking.

Note: I'm a firm believer in if you wanna be the man, you gotta beat the man. That's why I have said on countless occasions to bootleg Borg, that although Vilas may be POY in 1977 I'd still probably take Borg over him in fair one.

See my above post to Bootleg Borg.

Actually Connors' numbers in 1974 are another example of how the early Open Era is not a simple matter of picking out the bigger numbers. Yes, Connors went 99-4, with 3 majors, and he's the player of the year, no questions asked. But he won most of those matches on the easier Bill Riordan tour. In '74 the players below Connors don't come close to his numbers, so there's no question about who was #1. But if the second-best player had put up, let's say, 75 wins with 4 losses on the regular tour, with many more wins over Top Ten players (I think Connors had just a few wins over Top Tenners), then I just might give that player, not Connors, the top spot.

Of course it would depend on what happens at the majors, and if Connors still takes his 3 Slams, he'd still get POY. But if he gets only 1 or 2, and the other player posts those other numbers against greater competition, I don't know, it might be close.

Anyway Connors' overall numbers don't make him the prohibitive favorite at RG in '74. Some people think that he would have been the favorite, and that's fine. If that takes away from the luster of Borg's victory at the '74 RG, then so be it. I don't think it does (because I don't like Jimmy's chances to win it), but the point is, if it takes away from Borg's '74 victory, then it takes away from Vilas' 77 victory.

Let me simplify. When I mentioned 1974 in relaition to 1977 it was showing how cyBorg likes to present the facts. I'm not saying Connors would or would have won the French Open in 1974, that's beside the point.

If you knew nothing about tennis, and learned about it listening to cyBorg, you would know that Vilas won the Frnch Open in 1977, but you would also damn sure know that Borg did not play, and all of the 101 reasons why.

You would sure as hel know that Borg won the 1974 French Open, but Connors not particpating, would a small fact, the fine print, an "oh by the way" sort of thing. The guy has a "way" of preesenting things, and he ain't fooling me.

I mean I'm not gonna debate which draw was stronger 1977 or 1974 cuz frankly I don't care. But I do know one thing, Connors (who by many was player of the year and the best player in 1974) didn't play in Paris (nothing against Borg)..... and that sure as hell didn't make the draw/field stronger. But Bootleg Borg won't tell you that though.

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 08:59 AM
Tell me what it means to you in a way that is concise - player of the year versus the player best in the year.

To me, the player of the year is the best player of the year. Because to be the best, a player has to have the accomplishments that would establish him as one.

I've discussed results quite a bit already. Your approach is simply to ignore the arguments and then pretend they were never made in the first place.

I would respect you more if you were just pulling my leg. You know, like a sadist would.

This was what I was on about!

The argument (yes that's what it is), can only be won if this is addressed. It has to be agreed what "player of the year" actually means. Me and 380 disagree about this, that's why I'm not getting involved:)

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 09:05 AM
What he did was to consider the Masters as a kind of major, which is why that argument may have more cred nowaways (with all the emphasis on majors). And the Masters was huge in those days, so in principle I've got no problem with that. Sports Illustrated ran a report on that Masters tournament where the author said that the Masters could have decided the #1 for year but unfortunately did nothing to clarify it, because of the particular results there. Urban has mentioned it too: if Borg had won the Masters, it could have given him the year; but instead Connors won it; and Vilas, with such great numbers throughout the year, beat Connors there but lost to Borg in the semis. Nothing was decided there.

You've made some great points here. However I disagree that nothing was decided at the Masters. Connors actually did win it!!!

In my opinion there really is a strong case for Connors to be "player of the year" in 77, I'm just not clever enough to make it:)

380pistol
05-27-2009, 09:34 AM
This was what I was on about!

The argument (yes that's what it is), can only be won if this is addressed. It has to be agreed what "player of the year" actually means. Me and 380 disagree about this, that's why I'm not getting involved:)

You may disagree (see what I sad about Johan Santana as a reference, that bootleg Borg ignored), a lot of times "the best player" and "player of the year" are one in the same, but there are cases where they are not. So with no explantion just answer these TWO questions....

The 1992-93 NBA season

QUESTION #1
Who was the player of the year??? Which player had the best season???

QUESTION #2
I am going to put you in the 1993 NBA finals, and you can pick on player for your team. Based on what all 430+ players that played during the 1992-93 season, who would you pick??

I'm all ears. Hint. The answer is not the same person for both questions.

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 09:42 AM
Is NBA Basketball?

I'm from the UK don't forget. I quite like Baseball because it is a bit like Rounders, which I like, and which was copied to make Baseball:)

And don't even get me started on "American Football"!!!

Let's stick to tennis eh:)

380pistol
05-27-2009, 09:49 AM
Is NBA Basketball?

I'm from the UK don't forget. I quite like Baseball because it is a bit like Rounders, which I like, and which was copied to make Baseball:)

And don't even get me started on "American Football"!!!

Let's stick to tennis eh:)

Yeah, NBA is basketball and I was drawing a parrallel to make a point,maybe I'll draw a parrallel to make a point, maybe I'll doraw another one with baseball or football (American). Actually I did one with baseball (see Johan Santana).

And if you care.....
Question #1: Charles Barkley
Question #2: Michael Jordan

krosero
05-27-2009, 10:23 AM
If one ("X") went to the olympics and won gold, but "Y" boycotted, and won nothing. Yet "Y" won the world championships and "X" won the silver. "Y" then won tournaments AAA, BBB and CCC, and "X" won tournaments DDD and The Cross Continental Whatever(a major tournament like the US Open), also won 40 straight events, 50 straight events on a certain apparatus, the 2nd most tournament wins in the open era, the most total idividaul wins in one season known (balance beam, horse, uneven bars etc.) are you still gonna tell me, well "Y" didn't go to the olympics???

Now this is nonsense, why?? Cuz you have no retort???

This analogy is as plain as day, as I am taking the overall package, and you aren't.This analogy is hardly plain, it's unreadable. It's also wrong right at the start, for two reasons that I already mentioned. You've still got one player missing the Olympics, but if the Olympics is the big win in the gymnastics world, that corresponds to Wimbledon, and none of the big three players in '77 missed that. Vilas lost there in the third round and you know the rest. Secondly, Vilas played most of his events on clay, by choice -- and that's fine, of course, I don't fault him for putting together the best record he could, using his particular strengths -- but if you're going to name the person with the best results of the year, you'd want someone who put up the best results everywhere, not just on a particular surface or whenever his chief rival was missing.

That's the difference, for me, with 1999: there's nothing essential missing from Agassi's record. He ran the gambit, putting up great results on all the surfaces, showing up everywhere -- and that meant he took his beatings from Sampras, but those runner-up showings were still great results in deep fields. And Sampras is just not close enough anyway to make an issue of #1, so the H2H just doesn't make any difference in the end -- particularly because those meetings were all on fast surfaces. Had Pete made the FO final I like Agassi's chances. You see how different it is with Vilas, who would likely have lost to Borg on any surface? I don't know whether Vilas intentionally avoided him, but it's fairly plain that Vilas needed Borg's absence (or upset/injury) at an event in order to win it.

Ultimately Agassi's year, except for the (slightly skewed) H2H with Sampras, has what you want from someone who you're going to acclaim as the man with the best overall results on all tennis courts throughout the year.

That's why I suggested, at least think about a gymnast who specializes in one event but does not participate nearly as much in other events where he's weaker; and he loses to his chief rival even in the event he specializes in. You've got nothing like that in your analogy.

I hear so much about if Borg wants to be #1 for the year, then he has to go out and prove it. Well there's no problem with that, but I hear very few people (except CyBorg) asking the same question of Vilas. Nowadays we think in terms of majors and tournaments, and from that perspective it looks like Vilas showed up everywhere, missing nothing important. But surfaces matter, because they're one of the primary tests in tennis.

I remember in the 80s, Tennis Magazine used to have year-end rankings of the top players by surfaces. I noticed that the rankings for grass, to take an example, would have the Wimbledon champion at #1, the runner-up at #2, with the semifinalists at #3 and #4. Not very subtle, but it expressed the idea that having the best results on a particular surface (note, the best results, not just the best skills) was a noteworthy accomplishment: and the player with the best results overall would be the player of the year.

So yeah, Borg like anyone else needs to go out and prove he's #1, but Vilas does too. So I ask myself, why didn't Vilas played stronger draws, or play more indoor events? Why didn't he do better when the fields were strong (Wimbledon)? Why didn't he go out and meet Borg in Madrid and Barcelona?

And it's not his fault that Borg did not attend RG -- that's 100% true. No knock on him. But his victory in the absence of the man who owned him on clay is noted.

I don't understand why you think that the Connors case in '74 is the same. Why, just because Connors was #1 and was a proven force on fast surfaces? Look, I agree it's a significant absence. However, if someone wants to say that Connors was the favorite, even though I don't agree with that, I have no problem if someone else regards Connors' absence from the 74 RG less seriously than they regard Borg's absence from the 77 RG. Obviously, they just don't have a high opinion of Connors' ability on red clay, and I know that CyBorg does not like Jimmy's skill on red clay in any year, regardless of whether Borg wins or not. His opinion of Jimbo is just that. It's not hypocrisy, which I find just an astounding word for you to presume to use, when you barely know the poster you're speaking of and you're just starting to learn about tennis in the 70s. You've even admitted openly that you don't care to compare the draws at RG in 74 and 77. Then how in the hell would you know that the one case is just like the other? How do you know that there are no significant differences? Since when do we decide that a draw is deep merely based on the presence or absence of the computer's #1 player? CyBorg gave you the link to the '74 draw, and you've said you're not even interested in looking. You're not even sure who else may have missed these two events; and you weren't clear on who won the Italian Open in '77. So how do you know that the 1999 season really is like 1977, and that the two years really should be treated the same way? I'm sure you know generally that the tour rules had changed (so that no one, Agassi or anyone else, could do what Vilas did), but what else do you know? Have you studied the events in both year in detail? How much do you know about the similarities and differences between Agassi's year and Vilas'?

Again, 1999 is just an argument by analogy. It's a shortcut, instead of real study. In the end every year is different, and all the best historians recognize that -- they know that all analogies, in the end, break down.

I'm just suggesting that if you want some answers about '77, just pick up the knowledge. Arguing by analogy with your existing knowledge about the Sampras era and other sports just won't cut it -- particularly if you openly say that you're not even interested in looking. I'm not sure why anyone should take that seriously.

krosero
05-27-2009, 10:45 AM
Is NBA Basketball?

I'm from the UK don't forget. I quite like Baseball because it is a bit like Rounders, which I like, and which was copied to make Baseball:)

And don't even get me started on "American Football"!!!

Let's stick to tennis eh:)I have to say -- fully, fully agreed!

380pistol
05-27-2009, 10:50 AM
This analogy is hardly plain, it's unreadable. It's also wrong right at the start, for two reasons that I already mentioned. You've still got one player missing the Olympics, but if the Olympics is the big win in the gymnastics world, that corresponds to Wimbledon, and none of the big three players in '77 missed that. Vilas lost there in the third round and you know the rest. Secondly, Vilas played most of his events on clay, by choice -- and that's fine, of course, I don't fault him for putting together the best record he could, using his particular strengths -- but if you're going to name the person with the best results of the year, you'd want someone who put up the best results everywhere, not just on a particular surface or whenever his chief rival was missing.

That's the difference, for me, with 1999: there's nothing essential missing from Agassi's record. He ran the gambit, putting up great results on all the surfaces, showing up everywhere -- and that meant he took his beatings from Sampras, but those runner-up showings were still great results in deep fields. And Sampras is just not close enough anyway to make an issue of #1, so the H2H just doesn't make any difference in the end -- particularly because those meetings were all on fast surfaces. Had Pete made the FO final I like Agassi's chances. You see how different it is with Vilas, who would likely have lost to Borg on any surface? I don't know whether Vilas intentionally avoided him, but it's fairly plain that Vilas needed Borg's absence (or upset/injury) at an event in order to win it.

Ultimately Agassi's year, except for the (slightly skewed) H2H with Sampras, has what you want from someone who you're going to acclaim as the man with the best overall results on all tennis courts throughout the year.

That's why I suggested, at least think about a gymnast who specializes in one event but does not participate nearly as much in other events where he's weaker; and he loses to his chief rival even in the event he specializes in. You've got nothing like that in your analogy.

I hear so much about if Borg wants to be #1 for the year, then he has to go out and prove it. Well there's no problem with that, but I hear very few people (except CyBorg) asking the same question of Vilas. Nowadays we think in terms of majors and tournaments, and from that perspective it looks like Vilas showed up everywhere, missing nothing important. But surfaces matter, because they're one of the primary tests in tennis.

I remember in the 80s, Tennis Magazine used to have year-end rankings of the top players by surfaces. I noticed that the rankings for grass, to take an example, would have the Wimbledon champion at #1, the runner-up at #2, with the semifinalists at #3 and #4. Not very subtle, but it expressed the idea that having the best results on a particular surface (note, the best results, not just the best skills) was a noteworthy accomplishment: and the player with the best results overall would be the player of the year.

So yeah, Borg like anyone else needs to go out and prove he's #1, but Vilas does too. So I ask myself, why didn't Vilas played stronger draws, or play more indoor events? Why didn't he do better when the fields were strong (Wimbledon)? Why didn't he go out and meet Borg in Madrid and Barcelona?

And it's not his fault that Borg did not attend RG -- that's 100% true. No knock on him. But his victory in the absence of the man who owned him on clay is noted.

I don't understand why you think that the Connors case in '74 is the same. Why, just because Connors was #1 and was a proven force on fast surfaces? Look, it's a significant absence. If someone wants to say that Connors was the favorite, I don't agree, but I don't see a problem if someone regards Connors' absence from the 74 RG less seriously than they regard Borg's absence from the 77 RG. It might just be that they don't have a high opinion of Connors' ability on red clay, and I know that CyBorg does not like Jimmy's skill on red clay in any year, regardless of whether Borg wins or not. His opinion of Jimbo is just that. It's not hypocrisy, which I find just an astounding word for you to presume to use, when you barely know the poster you're speaking of and you're just starting to learn about tennis in the 70s. You've even admitted openly that you don't care to compare the draws at RG in 74 and 77. Then how in the hell would you know that the one case is just like the other? How do you know that there are no significant differences? Since when do we decide that a draw is deep merely on the presence or absence of the computer's #1 player? CyBorg gave you the link to the '74 draw, and you've said you're not even interested in looking. You're not even sure who else may have missed these two events; and you weren't clear on who won the Italian Open in '77. So how do you know that the 1999 season really is like 1977, and that the two years really should be treated the same way? I'm sure you know generally that the tour rules had changed (so that no one, Agassi or anyone else, could do what Vilas did), but what else do you know? Have you studied the events in both year in detail? How much do you know about the similarities and differences between Agassi's year and Vilas'?

Again, 1999 is just an argument by analogy. It's a shortcut to real study. In the end every year is different, and all the best historians recognize that -- they know that all analogies, in the end, break down.

I'm just suggesting that if you want some answers about '77, just pick up the knowledge. Arguing by analogy with your existing knowledge about the Sampras era and other sports just won't cut it -- particularly if you openly say that you're not even interested in looking. I'm not sure why anyone should take that seriously.


OK I'll simplify the gymnist analogy....

We have gymnast "X" and gymnast "Y", and their results in different competetions.......

AAA "X" (Gold), "Y" (Sliver)
BBB "X" (Gold), "Y" (Bronze)
OLYMPICS "X" (Boycotted), "Y" (Gold)
CCC "X" (Gold), "Y" (Silver)
DDD "X" (Silver), "Y" (Gold)
WORLD CONT. CHAMP. "X" (9th), "Y" (Gold)
EEE "X" (Gold), "Y" (Silver)
FFF "X" (Bronze), "Y" (Gold)
GLOBAL INDOOR CHAMP. "X" (Gold), "Y" (4th)
GGG "X" (Did Not Play), "X" (Gold)

And Player "Y"....
-also won 17 events that year, the 2nd most in history since global competitons were introduced
-finished 1st in 53 straight attemts on the balance beam
-finished 1st in 46 indival apparatus (balance beam, uneven bars, floor excercise, horse, etc.)

Now is bootleg Borg gonna tell me "Y" did not compile the best season based on the fact the fact "X" didn't copete in the olympics???

If "X" went to the olympics and competed in some other events things may have been differeent, but he didn't. "X" may have been more successful in competitions the both competed in, but did "X" compile a better season???

You say if Borg wants to be #1 he go out and do it, then the same should be asked of Vilas. I agree, the same should be asked. All I'll say is what do you think he didn't, what do you think he needs to do, and why??

That's what I've been asking bootleg Borg from the jump. I don't care to look it up cuz I'm not arguing anything, and that's what everyone is failing to realize. The question was asked, and I said Vilas cuz over those 365 I think his results were the best overall. If bootleg Borg says Borg should be #1 (what he said initially), then they are co #1's (his next statement), then you have to take what they both did over the course of those 365 days and eithr equate their season, or show how Borg's surpasses it. That's still something he hasn't done. Like I said flying has done more, to porve Borg's superiority. I moreso for now anyway, have taken his word for it, and not researched it, for what?? I don't care. Your opening paragraph has done more than he has in 4 pages. (Though I tried to make the 3 "named" tournaments, equate the slams, don't take it as exacts, just a refernce point). He can argue til he's blue in the face, the question still remains.

As far as Agass/Sampras 1999, it's this. If you took Agassi, Sampras, 498 other players, and had the compete over the course of one season, and whp would come out as the on top, then I'd say Agassi. yeah Sampras may miss 2 of the biggest events and more, but oh well. If that's how it's gonna be, I'll take Agassi, cuz I know he'll be there, and he'll produce. I don't care if Sampras takes him outta the park like Pujols on the regular, I know on December 31st, Dre will stand above all other 500.

Now if if I had to take one player from that pool of 500 to play for life, against anyone other, or just take the top 64 and have one singular tournament, then I'd take Sampras.

krosero
05-27-2009, 11:21 AM
OK I'll simplify the gymnist analogy....

We have gymnast "X" and gymnast "Y", and their results in different competetions.......

AAA "X" (Gold), "Y" (Sliver)
BBB "X" (Gold), "Y" (Bronze)
OLYMPICS "X" (Boycotted), "Y" (Gold)
CCC "X" (Gold), "Y" (Silver)
DDD "X" (Silver), "Y" (Gold)
WORLD CONT. CHAMP. "X" (9th), "Y" (Gold)
EEE "X" (Gold), "Y" (Silver)
FFF "X" (Bronze), "Y" (Gold)
GLOBAL INDOOR CHAMP. "X" (Gold), "Y" (4th)
GGG "X" (Did Not Play), "X" (Gold)First of all you've still got a boycott of the Olympics, and that invalidates the analogy at the start (I've already explained my reasons). Secondly, I can't believe you think this is simplified. It's pointlessly, painfully complicated. If you're going to go into this much detail then why not just stick to the tennis events? That's the way to simplify. Do you realize what a pain it would be to match up all these hypothetical events with the tennis events and then argue over each one? And how confusing it would surely be? If you think the key is found in this level of detail, then just study the details of the tennis season in '77. Why this insistence on arguing by analogy, instead of real study?

I see this happen on message boards generally -- people fall in love with their own analogies and start acting as if the analogies are the real argument. "No, no, it's a good analogy, look at all the impressive detail, just stick with me." Well, why should I stick with you? I don't even know the subject matter you're bringing, I can only take your word for it when you say this or that about it -- and that, I am not going to do. When you start with your analogies about other sports, other than a few fans of those other sports you're just talking to yourself, I hate to say.

It's so absurd. What if the analogy were actually perfect? What then? What's been won? Nothing. I haven't learned anything new about the tennis, and on the other sport I've merely taken your word for it that the situation really was similar. Completely absurd exercise.

Why this resistance to real study? You've said about the tennis details that you have "not researched it, for what?? I don't care." Okay, so that's it. You don't actually care about the topic itself. So then why are you asking about it? What's your real interest here, if it's not Borg, Vilas and tennis in the 70s?

If it's 1999 and the Sampras era generally, I'm only going to say it again, every era is different.

So answer me that -- if you don't find the material itself interesting, what is your interest here?

380pistol
05-27-2009, 12:19 PM
First of all you've still got a boycott of the Olympics, and that invalidates the analogy at the start (I've already explained my reasons). Secondly, I can't believe you think this is simplified. It's pointlessly, painfully complicated. If you're going to go into this much detail then why not just stick to the tennis events? That's the way to simplify. Do you realize what a pain it would be to match up all these hypothetical events with the tennis events and then argue over each one? And how confusing it would surely be? If you think the key is found in this level of detail, then just study the details of the tennis season in '77. Why this insistence on arguing by analogy, instead of real study?

I see this happen on message boards generally -- people fall in love with their own analogies and start acting as if the analogies are the real argument. "No, no, it's a good analogy, look at all the impressive detail, just stick with me." Well, why should I stick with you? I don't even know the subject matter you're bringing, I can only take your word for it when you say this or that about it -- and that, I am not going to do. When you start with your analogies about other sports, other than a few fans of those other sports you're just talking to yourself, I hate to say.

It's so absurd. What if the analogy were actually perfect? What then? What's been won? Nothing. I haven't learned anything new about the tennis, and on the other sport I've merely taken your word for it that the situation really was similar. Completely absurd exercise.

Why this resistance to real study? You've said about the tennis details that you have "not researched it, for what?? I don't care." Okay, so that's it. You don't actually care about the topic itself. So then why are you asking about it? What's your real interest here, if it's not Borg, Vilas and tennis in the 70s?

If it's 1999 and the Sampras era generally, I'm only going to say it again, every era is different.

So answer me that -- if you don't find the material itself interesting, what is your interest here?

You're taking this out of context. The Olympic analogy came from something that bootleg Borg said, and I asked can you, or much can you penalize, for someone else's absence. Yes Borg didn't go to RG, but can you 9well him), and how much can Vilas be pealized for that?? That's where the Olympic anaology came in. I asked can you say Carl Lewis was not the best sprinter in 1984?? I mean numerous countries boycotted the 1984 games.

And that's where the world championship/olympic analogy came in. I just said over the course of that year one may have been better head to head, or may not have had the opportunity, but at the end of the day who's results were superior and why??

The anolgy was to show when it's all said and donrone had better results, even though the other may have had circumstances that prevented him doing that.

My interest here, I answered a question. Bootleg Borg, didn't like my answer, and gave reasons. I just asked him what, why and how?? When I said I don't care, it's I don't have the desire to look up 1977 and see what exactly was what. It's not a priority, and not something that's pressing. I understand there are issues, but not really a concern of mine. If he feels Borg was better fine, how many times I've said, I don't dispute that. But I would like to see him take everything each did (Borg and Vilas), weigh it against each other, and whatever may be, is what ever may be. But then we get back to "Borg did this, and this meant that, and Vilas did this, and Borg couldn't do that". Well that's all nice, now just stack them up against each other, give whatever weight/credence to whatever you will, and let me see who comes out ahead.

For reference scroll back to his Emerson/Laver 1967 analogy, and see how that was dealt with. I stacked then against each other, gave whateer it's weight, and presented it.

Benhur
05-27-2009, 12:49 PM
The surface argument that I keep reading here is weak. Clay was the predominant surface in the 70s. This changed very quickly as the US began to adopt hardcourts as the preferred surface in the 80s. McEnroe’s 1984 is generally considered the most dominant year by any player. He played the vast majority his tournaments on hard/indoor (14, vs 3 tournaments on clay and 2 on grass). I have never heard anyone accuse him of avoiding clay or grass. Federer's domination years were also overwhelmingly based on tournaments played on hard/indoor. Because the surface preponderance changed so radically and so fast, it is easy to describe Vilas' 1977 as "cheating" or “impossible today”. The phrase “impossible today” has no bearing on the accomplishments of 1977. You might as well say that Federer’s 2006 would be impossible in 1977.

In all these arguments, it is somehow taken for granted that winning tournaments on clay is easier than winning them in other surfaces, hence the “cheating” label trhown in by the devout Scandinavian. That’s nonsense. If anything, it is generally agreed that from an effort point of view, RG is the hardest of majors to win, precisely because of the surface and the stamina it requires.

Further, the AO was not played on clay, and Vilas still reached the final. There were no majors on hard courts, but that's not Vilas' fault.

Borgforever
05-27-2009, 01:17 PM
And what do you mean with the inaccurate statement about clay being the predominant surface of the 70s?

RG has always been on clay -- but from 1970-74 the three other majors were grass-court tourneys. Only USO changed to green, faster clay (Har Tru) for three years (1975-77) then it was hardcourt cement or Deco Turf II...

Where is the dominance of clay of which you speak? You never make any sense. I can't understand that Jeffrey Neave spent so much time arguing with a man like you who'll never changes his position, regardless of evidence, because the only thing you seem to interested in is your own perspective and the axe you grind and everyone else is just dumb...

Wonderful outlook...

Borgforever
05-27-2009, 01:25 PM
*************

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 02:13 PM
At what point did I ever disput that?? I haven't. He's arguing things I'm not disputing. I just made him look like a hypocrite. he wants to make note that Borg didn't participate in 1977 fine. But have you eve heard him say anyhing remotely resembling that about world #1, 3 slam winner Connors not playing in the 1974 French Opemn??? Funny... look who won that?!? The blade has gotta cut both ways.

Oh, man. You are so incredibly, incredibly dense.

I'm going to stop explaining why the two are different. I only wind up repeating the same point and you then keep ignoring it.

I've made my argument quite clear enough. If it doesn't work for you, then fine - you go your own separate way and believe whatever you wish to believe.

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 02:28 PM
The surface argument that I keep reading here is weak. Clay was the predominant surface in the 70s.

Um, not really. Need I really bring up Jimmy Connors who barely set his foot on red clay in the 1970s? And as far as har-tru - all the important events on that were in the summer; biggest ones being Boston, Indianapolis and for those three years the US Open.

These are different surfaces - not to be lumped in together as simply "clay". Perhaps only in basic conversational terms, but not when analyzing things closely.

The issue with Vilas's year isn't even just clay. It's his avoidance of big tournaments - not only on red clay, but also on green clay and on carpet and hard surfaces. This includes carpet events like Philly and Dallas, har-tru events in Boston and Indianapolis, indoor events like Wembley. And then his failure in Rome and Hamburg - winning those would have greatly solidified his year.

Even if Vilas had played almost his entire year on clay (red/har-tru) surfaces, but won events like Rome and Boston, for example, to complement his Roland Garros victory - at least we could say that he was out there going out against the best competition, in the most respected events. But he wasn't.

hoodjem
05-27-2009, 02:47 PM
The surface argument that I keep reading here is weak. Clay was the predominant surface in the 70s.
Really?

Wimbledon was on clay in the 1970s?

The USO was on clay in 1970-74, 1978-79?

The AO was on clay in the 1970s?

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 02:51 PM
This was what I was on about!

The argument (yes that's what it is), can only be won if this is addressed. It has to be agreed what "player of the year" actually means. Me and 380 disagree about this, that's why I'm not getting involved:)

There are basically two ways of looking at player of the year I can think of. Even in today's more standardized era.

One way merely adds up the ranking points and then by the end of the year you have a sum total for the player.

Another way looks at things more as percentages, because merely adding up ranking points can lead to the wrong conclusion - as the player who plays more can rack up a greater number than someone who plays less. Realistically, a situation could come about whereby a player with a better winning percentage, better success in slam and masters series events may wind up behind in the rankings to a player who racked up more points in smaller events - perhaps played 20 or 30 more matches.

I'm more in the latter camp. Deciding who the "player of the year" is requires some thinking and debate. I tend to think of a year in abstract ways and this works for the contemporary pictures. The year, no matter how one looks at things, can be divided into stages. There important ones today are:

- The Aussie Open stretch
- the two big masters events in the US (IW, Miami)
- clay court stretch
- grass
- hardcourt stretch, leading into the US Open
- indoor events

This is how I abstract things. Everything else is packing material, minor stuff.

Analyzing a player, I like to examine how his results fit into each of these stages. Dominance and consistency of excellence matters. A player who wins the French Open is not always the better clay court player. Case in point - Thomas Muster was better in 1996 on clay than Kafelnikov, because he was more consistently excellent on the surface than the Russian. There is evidence that he was the best.

Not all of these stretches are as long as the other - also not all of them include a grand slam event, so we have to be careful not to grant them equal value. We just have to draw logical, informed conclusions.

A player who performs best in four of the six aforementioned stretches is most likely the player of the year - one would expect at least. Some guys dominate only a single stretch, but do it really well. This can lead to some interesting debates.

Going back 30 years ago, this gets more complicated. We have parallel tours, bans, important events that cease to be important, etc, etc. But for the most part there remains some abstract clarity to a year. Carpet events were predominant early in the calendar year; they consistently drew the best players, with some exceptions. Then all the most important red clay events followed later in the spring. The summer stood out mostly with har-tru events, until later in the 1970s when the Canada Masters emerged as the major lead up to the US Open event in Flushing. Right around this time, Cincinnati become a big event. In the fall, the most important events were on carpet - with some relatively respected clay court events taking place in Europe and South America; they mattered to surface specialists, but we generally don't think of them as the best ones.

Those who read this board enough know what the best attended events generally were. SgtJohn dedicated quite a bit of his time on this and shared his insights about it. Those interested can search for this information I'm sure.

It's astounding when we consider this information just how few of these events Vilas entered and how many obscure and poorly attended ones he did enter and win. For this reason, any kind of criteria or formula that privileges quantitative measures (adding up ranking points either real or made up) is evidently improper and illogical. I object to this approach in respect to analyzing the contemporary player, but it is even more grievous when looking back at the reality of the tour 30 years ago.

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 02:52 PM
Really?

Wimbledon was on clay in the 1970s?

The USO was on clay in 1970-74, 1978-79?

The AO was on clay in the 1970s?

Don't forget WCT (Dallas especially) and the Masters Cup.

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 03:13 PM
OK I'll simplify the gymnist analogy....

We have gymnast "X" and gymnast "Y", and their results in different competetions.......

AAA "X" (Gold), "Y" (Sliver)
BBB "X" (Gold), "Y" (Bronze)
OLYMPICS "X" (Boycotted), "Y" (Gold)
CCC "X" (Gold), "Y" (Silver)
DDD "X" (Silver), "Y" (Gold)
WORLD CONT. CHAMP. "X" (9th), "Y" (Gold)
EEE "X" (Gold), "Y" (Silver)
FFF "X" (Bronze), "Y" (Gold)
GLOBAL INDOOR CHAMP. "X" (Gold), "Y" (4th)
GGG "X" (Did Not Play), "X" (Gold)

And Player "Y"....
-also won 17 events that year, the 2nd most in history since global competitons were introduced
-finished 1st in 53 straight attemts on the balance beam
-finished 1st in 46 indival apparatus (balance beam, uneven bars, floor excercise, horse, etc.)

Now is bootleg Borg gonna tell me "Y" did not compile the best season based on the fact the fact "X" didn't copete in the olympics???

If "X" went to the olympics and competed in some other events things may have been differeent, but he didn't. "X" may have been more successful in competitions the both competed in, but did "X" compile a better season???

You say if Borg wants to be #1 he go out and do it, then the same should be asked of Vilas. I agree, the same should be asked. All I'll say is what do you think he didn't, what do you think he needs to do, and why??

That's what I've been asking bootleg Borg from the jump. I don't care to look it up cuz I'm not arguing anything, and that's what everyone is failing to realize. The question was asked, and I said Vilas cuz over those 365 I think his results were the best overall. If bootleg Borg says Borg should be #1 (what he said initially), then they are co #1's (his next statement), then you have to take what they both did over the course of those 365 days and eithr equate their season, or show how Borg's surpasses it. That's still something he hasn't done. Like I said flying has done more, to porve Borg's superiority. I moreso for now anyway, have taken his word for it, and not researched it, for what?? I don't care. Your opening paragraph has done more than he has in 4 pages. (Though I tried to make the 3 "named" tournaments, equate the slams, don't take it as exacts, just a refernce point). He can argue til he's blue in the face, the question still remains.

As far as Agass/Sampras 1999, it's this. If you took Agassi, Sampras, 498 other players, and had the compete over the course of one season, and whp would come out as the on top, then I'd say Agassi. yeah Sampras may miss 2 of the biggest events and more, but oh well. If that's how it's gonna be, I'll take Agassi, cuz I know he'll be there, and he'll produce. I don't care if Sampras takes him outta the park like Pujols on the regular, I know on December 31st, Dre will stand above all other 500.

Now if if I had to take one player from that pool of 500 to play for life, against anyone other, or just take the top 64 and have one singular tournament, then I'd take Sampras.

Am I the only one who thought this a little complicated?

Just realised I wasn't the only one:)

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 03:23 PM
There are basically two ways of looking at player of the year I can think of. Even in today's more standardized era.

One way merely adds up the ranking points and then by the end of the year you have a sum total for the player.

Another way looks at things more as percentages, because merely adding up ranking points can lead to the wrong conclusion - as the player who plays more can rack up a greater number than someone who plays less. Realistically, a situation could come about whereby a player with a better winning percentage, better success in slam and masters series events may wind up behind in the rankings to a player who racked up more points in smaller events - perhaps played 20 or 30 more matches.

I'm more in the latter camp. Deciding who the "player of the year" is requires some thinking and debate. I tend to think of a year in abstract ways and this works for the contemporary pictures. The year, no matter how one looks at things, can be divided into stages. There important ones today are:

- The Aussie Open stretch
- the two big masters events in the US (IW, Miami)
- clay court stretch
- grass
- hardcourt stretch, leading into the US Open
- indoor events

This is how I abstract things. Everything else is packing material, minor stuff.

Analyzing a player, I like to examine how his results fit into each of these stages. Dominance and consistency of excellence matters. A player who wins the French Open is not always the better clay court player. Case in point - Thomas Muster was better in 1996 on clay than Kafelnikov, because he was more consistently excellent on the surface than the Russian. There is evidence that he was the best.

Not all of these stretches are as long as the other - also not all of them include a grand slam event, so we have to be careful not to grant them equal value. We just have to draw logical, informed conclusions.

A player who performs best in four of the six aforementioned stretches is most likely the player of the year - one would expect at least. Some guys dominate only a single stretch, but do it really well. This can lead to some interesting debates.

Going back 30 years ago, this gets more complicated. We have parallel tours, bans, important events that cease to be important, etc, etc. But for the most part there remains some abstract clarity to a year. Carpet events were predominant early in the calendar year; they consistently drew the best players, with some exceptions. Then all the most important red clay events followed later in the spring. The summer stood out mostly with har-tru events, until later in the 1970s when the Canada Masters emerged as the major lead up to the US Open event in Flushing. Right around this time, Cincinnati become a big event. In the fall, the most important events were on carpet - with some relatively respected clay court events taking place in Europe and South America; they mattered to surface specialists, but we generally don't think of them as the best ones.

Those who read this board enough know what the best attended events generally were. SgtJohn dedicated quite a bit of his time on this and shared his insights about it. Those interested can search for this information I'm sure.

It's astounding when we consider this information just how few of these events Vilas entered and how many obscure and poorly attended ones he did enter and win. For this reason, any kind of criteria or formula that privileges quantitative measures (adding up ranking points either real or made up) is evidently improper and illogical. I object to this approach in respect to analyzing the contemporary player, but it is even more grievous when looking back at the reality of the tour 30 years ago.

I genuinely think this is a good explanation, and I agree overall!

Quite a few people (not you I should point out) here though have a third version of "player of the year", which I completely disagree with. This method seems to rely entirely on a players reputation and a few head to head results, making a completely arbitrary opinion (because that's what it is) of who the "player of the year" is. If you are going to look at "player of the year" you have to look at results over the whole year, and not just a few results, even if they are head to head!

In my opinion "player of the year" is ALWAYS the best player that year. They might not be the best player of their generation or the best player for the last 2 or 3 years, but it would make them the best player that year, full stop. You cannot put the 2 candidates on an imaginary court and suggest who would beat the other, I think you have to look at RESULTS over the WHOLE year. I know some disagree, but we will have to agree to disagree!

(I'm right)

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 03:25 PM
I genuinely think this is a good explanation, and I agree overall!

Quite a few people here though have a third "player of the year", which I completely disagree with. This method seems to rely entirely on a players reputation and a few head to head results, making a completely arbitrary opinion (because that's what it is) of who the "player of the year" is.

There is also the basic counting of grand slam events and noting the total number of singles titles. Though that doesn't count as a method - it's just straight up ********.

Nalbandian great
05-27-2009, 03:36 PM
Vilas: number one is not equal a best player.

Benhur
05-27-2009, 03:37 PM
And what do you mean with the inaccurate statement about clay being the predominant surface of the 70s?


I mean that it was, because the majority of tournaments were on that surface.
As far as changing my position, I will do so when you demonstrate that it wasn't. You haven't. Because you can't.

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 03:40 PM
I mean that it was, because the majority of tournaments were on that surface.
As far as changing my position, I will do so when you demonstrate that it wasn't. You haven't. Because you can't.

Look up "onus".

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 03:43 PM
I've really enjoyed this thread, and have learnt quite a few things, one being that:-

The overall majority of IMPORTANT tournaments in the 70's were definitely not on clay, fact!

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 03:45 PM
I mean that it was, because the majority of tournaments were on that surface.
As far as changing my position, I will do so when you demonstrate that it wasn't. You haven't. Because you can't.

I don't what position you are currently in, but you probably need to change it:)

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 03:51 PM
I've really enjoyed this thread, and have learnt quite a few things, one being that:-

The overall majority of IMPORTANT tournaments in the 70's were definitely not on clay, fact!

Interesting. According to SgtJohn - in 1977 these were the best attended ("masters quality" - if you will) events (after RG, Wimbledon, US Open and the Masters):

Philadelphia, Las Vegas, Monte Carlo, Rome, Dallas, Indianapolis, Boston, Stockholm and Wembley.

That's 13 events - of them three are on red clay, three on green clay.

I'm sure Benhur will jump in here and say something like "look, the most common surface is clay". But those more reasonable will acknowledge that red and green clay were very different surfaces and Vilas was still avoiding the big ones, even on his favorite surface.

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 03:59 PM
And that's only 77. In the early 70's green clay was used even less in the important tournaments!

pc1
05-27-2009, 04:23 PM
I've really enjoyed this thread, and have learnt quite a few things, one being that:-

The overall majority of IMPORTANT tournaments in the 70's were definitely not on clay, fact!

Jimbo333,

However in 1977 two of the four majors were on clay and there were a huge clay court circuit in 1977.

In just a glance at the ITF site, I counted Vilas entered in at least twenty clay tournaments. That's a lot. And of course as you know he won the two big clay events in the French and the U.S. Open.

I think most people agree here that Borg played at a higher level during the year and was a better player but was it enough to overcome the huge quantity of activity by Vilas. Vilas did play very well also in 1977. However the main problem for many and it was mentioned in 1977 also was that Vilas did not play a balanced schedule and most of his tournament wins were on clay and he was not nearly as good on other surfaces.

The people who supported Borg for number one that year pointed to the fact Borg was excellent on all surfaces, grass, clay, indoors etc and that his winning percentage was the best of the year. Some sources state Borg as winning 13 of 20 tournaments that year. Vilas won several more than that plus an extra major but he entered far more tournaments than Borg. According to the Collins Encyclopedia (which can be a bit off) Vilas won 17 tournaments. Here's Vilas' French Open results in 1977. The opponents are decent but no big deal on clay. The toughest seems to be Raul Ramirez but Vilas always seemed to be the master of Ramirez in big matches. It's a major but it doesn't seem that strong.

French Open France
SL 23 May 1977 to 05 Jun 1977 Entry: DA Clay (O)
128 W Zeljko FRANULOVIC (YUG) 6-1 6-2 6-4
64 W Belus PRAJOUX (CHI) 2-6 6-0 6-2 6-0
32 W Bernie MITTON (RSA) 6-1 6-4 6-2
16 W Stan SMITH (USA) 6-1 6-2 6-1
QF W Wojtek FIBAK (POL) 6-4 6-0 6-4
SF W Raul RAMIREZ (MEX) 6-2 6-0 6-3
FR W Brian GOTTFRIED (USA) 6-0 6-3 6-0

Here's a tournament Borg played on clay that same year and the results.
Barcelona Spain
GP 17 Oct 1977 to 23 Oct 1977 Entry: DA Clay (O)
64 W Rafael RUIZ (ESP) 6-0 6-0
32 W Jose MORENO-TALLADA (ESP) 6-3 4-6 6-4
16 W Victor PECCI (PAR) 6-2 6-3
QF W Jose HIGUERAS (ESP) 6-0 6-1
SF W Eddie DIBBS (USA) 6-0 6-0 6-4
FR W Manuel ORANTES (ESP) 6-2 7-5 6-2

The last three players can be argued to be better than anyone Vilas played at the French, especially Orantes, who won the U.S. Clay Courts over Connors that year. Even Pecci could be awesome at times on clay as demonstrated by his showing in the French in the future, defeating Vilas and Connors on his way to the final.

Anyway Borg won this event, it's not a major but a far more impressive performance against a much tougher field. Still the French is a major.

Benhur
05-27-2009, 04:24 PM
Interesting. According to SgtJohn - in 1977 these were the best attended ("masters quality" - if you will) events (after RG, Wimbledon, US Open and the Masters):

Philadelphia, Las Vegas, Monte Carlo, Rome, Dallas, Indianapolis, Boston, Stockholm and Wembley.

That's 13 events - of them three are on red clay, three on green clay.

I'm sure Benhur will jump in here and say something like "look, the most common surface is clay". But those more reasonable will acknowledge that red and green clay were very different surfaces and Vilas was still avoiding the big ones, even on his favorite surface.

LOL. You guys are a riot.
You give a string of tournaments, a disproportionate numbe of them in the US, ranked by a certain "attendence " number given by a certain Sargent John. Even after that entertaining presentation, it turns out most of them are on clay. And you hinge your argment on the observation that red and green are not the same.

If you look at the total number of tennis tournaments played around the world in the 70s, the result will be an overwhelming, I mean overwhelming, preponderance of clay. That’s a fact.

CyBorg
05-27-2009, 04:35 PM
LOL. You guys are a riot.
You give a string of tournaments, a disproportionate numbe of them in the US, ranked by a certain "attendence " number given by a certain Sargent John. Even after that entertaining presentation, it turns out most of them are on clay. And you hinge your argment on the observation that red and green are not the same.

If you look at the total number of tennis tournaments played around the world in the 70s, the result will be an overwhelming, I mean overwhelming, preponderance of clay. That’s a fact.

Let's for a second assume that your claim is correct - you haven't shown it to be so.

You still have to show how it is that this purported fact problematizes what it is I say about surfaces.

It's a kind of a strawman, because you don't really tackle my arguments. Rather you just superficially address one tidbit of it and then pretend to shut it down by making an unsupported claim.

jimbo333
05-27-2009, 04:57 PM
Jimbo333,

However in 1977 two of the four majors were on clay and there were a huge clay court circuit in 1977.

In just a glance at the ITF site, I counted Vilas entered in at least twenty clay tournaments. That's a lot. And of course as you know he won the two big clay events in the French and the U.S. Open.

I think most people agree here that Borg played at a higher level during the year and was a better but was it enough to overcome the huge quantity of activity by Vilas. Vilas did play very well also in 1977. However the main problem for many and it was mentioned in 1977 also was that Vilas did not play a balanced schedule and most of his tournament wins were on clay and he was not nearly as good on other surfaces.

The people who supported Borg for number one that year pointed to the fact Borg was excellent on all surfaces, grass, clay, indoors etc and that his winning percentage was the best of the year. Some sources state Borg as winning 13 of 20 tournaments that year. Vilas won several more than that plus an extra major but he entered far more tournaments than Borg. According to the Collins Encyclopedia (which can be a bit off) Vilas won 17 tournaments. Here's Vilas' French Open results in 1977. The opponents are decent but no big deal on clay. The toughest seems to be Raul Ramirez but Vilas always seemed to be the master of Ramirez in big matches. It's a major but it doesn't seem that strong.

French Open France
SL 23 May 1977 to 05 Jun 1977 Entry: DA Clay (O)
128 W Zeljko FRANULOVIC (YUG) 6-1 6-2 6-4
64 W Belus PRAJOUX (CHI) 2-6 6-0 6-2 6-0
32 W Bernie MITTON (RSA) 6-1 6-4 6-2
16 W Stan SMITH (USA) 6-1 6-2 6-1
QF W Wojtek FIBAK (POL) 6-4 6-0 6-4
SF W Raul RAMIREZ (MEX) 6-2 6-0 6-3
FR W Brian GOTTFRIED (USA) 6-0 6-3 6-0

Here's a tournament Borg played on clay that same year and the results.
Barcelona Spain
GP 17 Oct 1977 to 23 Oct 1977 Entry: DA Clay (O)
64 W Rafael RUIZ (ESP) 6-0 6-0
32 W Jose MORENO-TALLADA (ESP) 6-3 4-6 6-4
16 W Victor PECCI (PAR) 6-2 6-3
QF W Jose HIGUERAS (ESP) 6-0 6-1
SF W Eddie DIBBS (USA) 6-0 6-0 6-4
FR W Manuel ORANTES (ESP) 6-2 7-5 6-2

The last three players can be argued to be better than anyone Vilas played at the French, especially Orantes, who won the U.S. Clay Courts over Connors that year. Even Pecci could be awesome at times on clay as demonstrated by his showing in the French in the future, defeating Vilas and Connors on his way to the final.

Anyway Borg won this event, it's not a major but a far more impressive performance against a much tougher field. Still the French is a major.

Hi, yeah I realise clay was an important surface in 77, my comment was a reply to someone else about 70's as a whole. As an example mentioned by someone else, in 74 Connors the clear No.1 in the world didn't play much at all on clay.

More quality info here anyway, excellent!

I can see there is a really good argument for Borg in 77. I really am undecided now.

krosero
05-27-2009, 05:18 PM
You're taking this out of context. The Olympic analogy came from something that bootleg Borg said, and I asked can you, or much can you penalize, for someone else's absence. Yes Borg didn't go to RG, but can you 9well him), and how much can Vilas be pealized for that?? That's where the Olympic anaology came in. I asked can you say Carl Lewis was not the best sprinter in 1984?? I mean numerous countries boycotted the 1984 games.

And that's where the world championship/olympic analogy came in. I just said over the course of that year one may have been better head to head, or may not have had the opportunity, but at the end of the day who's results were superior and why??

The anolgy was to show when it's all said and donrone had better results, even though the other may have had circumstances that prevented him doing that.In the case of Carl Lewis I remember the '84 Olympic boycott. I remember reading in TIME magazine that the best athletes in many sports came from the Eastern bloc and were absent, but that Carl Lewis would have won his medals anyway, even if he had faced his best competitors from the Eastern bloc.

Carl Lewis was the same as Borg, not Vilas.

Now for those Olympic athletes that won because superior competitors were absent, I don't know exactly how to judge their Olympic gold because I need more information on the sport and on what happened throughout the year. But that's where I'm done with this analogy. I'd rather learn about tennis in 1977 instead of Olympic sports in 1984, and this thread is providing useful information.

380pistol
05-27-2009, 09:54 PM
In the case of Carl Lewis I remember the '84 Olympic boycott. I remember reading in TIME magazine that the best athletes in many sports came from the Eastern bloc and were absent, but that Carl Lewis would have won his medals anyway, even if he had faced his best competitors from the Eastern bloc.

Carl Lewis was the same as Borg, not Vilas.

Now for those Olympic athletes that won because superior competitors were absent, I don't know exactly how to judge their Olympic gold because I need more information on the sport and on what happened throughout the year. But that's where I'm done with this analogy. I'd rather learn about tennis in 1977 instead of Olympic sports in 1984, and this thread is providing useful information.

This what you're mistaking. When I say Carl Lewis, I'm not saying Lewis 1984 = Vilas 1977, I'm just Carl Lewis as in "any" athlete that participated in the 1984 games. You can take a swimmer, gymnast, wieghtlifter, long jumper.

Like you said you don't know how to judge their Olympic results, neither do I. For those 1984 athletes, I just go based on results (over the course of the year), that's why I tried to differentiate between Player Of The Year and who's the best, as there are circumstances where they are not one in the same.

380pistol
05-27-2009, 10:01 PM
Am I the only one who thought this a little complicated?

Just realised I wasn't the only one:)

"Simple minded fools/ foil grimy crews"
-Nas

SCENARIO #1
It's not that difficult. Let's take 1999. If we take all the particapants on tour that year over the course of 11 months, and the winner is who's at the top in December, then I'd go with Agassi. I don't give a rat's *** if Sampras hands him his *** 4 out of their 5 meetings, or didn't do that, what I know is from Jan 1st to Dec 31st nobody performed better than Agassi. Hence he's "Player Of The Year".


SCENARIO #2
If we took all the participants from 1999, and had a singular tour, who would be the one to go with?? Sampras. Hence he may be considered "the best". Agassi may have a better year, and dealt with everyone (Pete incl.) over that span, but if he and Sampras meet in the final, it's not looking good for Dre.


Now relate this 1977. One scenario is Vilas, and one is Borg. I'll let you put whom where you see fit.

380pistol
05-27-2009, 10:04 PM
Oh, man. You are so incredibly, incredibly dense.

I'm going to stop explaining why the two are different. I only wind up repeating the same point and you then keep ignoring it.

I've made my argument quite clear enough. If it doesn't work for you, then fine - you go your own separate way and believe whatever you wish to believe.

You don't read what I say do you Bootleg Borg?? What I tell krosero regarding this issue??


Let me simplify. When I mentioned 1974 in relaition to 1977 it was showing how cyBorg likes to present the facts. I'm not saying Connors would or would have won the French Open in 1974, that's beside the point.

If you knew nothing about tennis, and learned about it listening to cyBorg, you would know that Vilas won the Frnch Open in 1977, but you would also damn sure know that Borg did not play, and all of the 101 reasons why.

You would sure as hell know that Borg won the 1974 French Open, but Connors not particpating, would be a small fact, the fine print, an "oh by the way" sort of thing. The guy has a "way" of preesenting things, and he ain't fooling me.

I mean I'm not gonna debate which draw was stronger 1977 or 1974 cuz frankly I don't care. But I do know one thing, Connors (who by many was player of the year and the best player in 1974) didn't play in Paris (nothing against Borg)..... and that sure as hell didn't make the draw/field stronger. But Bootleg Borg won't tell you that though.



But of course the #1 player not going to slam doesn't effect the draw does it. If that helps you sleep at night.

Carlo Giovanni Colussi
05-28-2009, 03:58 AM
CyBorg, I'm quoting these posts of yours from another thread because they've highlighted some key differences between the early Open Era and today. Just as an amateur student of history (one of my favorite subjects), there are a few things that you're doing which I really appreciate: 1) Context is everything; 2) don't judge the past by today's standards; 3) don't reduce everything to numbers.


Hello krosero and CyBorg.

We had strong disagreements in the past and we probably have others in the future but these 3 above postulates are wholly right.
1977 was the first year I truly witnessed the world tour tennis competition (the first time I heard of tennis champions was in 1973 but I was a 10-year old kid then) and at the time Borg, Vilas and even Connors were considered as the very top players and each one had numerous fans considering their favourite player as the top dog (most considered that at his very best Connors was the best of the three and so some of them still considered Jimbo as the #1 because of that).
It is clear that the context was very important : the French Open was not that important (except in my countrymen's view) then, Wimby was clearly more important (Forest too) than the French especially the years when many great players didn't bother to enter Garros. It is also clear that standards have dramatically changed since the past and will continue to in the future (perhaps Madrid would be a major and Paris a forgotten event, who knows ?).
Here I voted Borg as #1 but as I've said several times elsewhere with no absolute certainty, perhaps Vilas was #1.
As Borgforever put it in another post, for the moment, I think that Ashe-Connors, Connors-Borg, Borg-Vilas were co-No1 respectively in 1975, 1976 and 1977 but I grant a very slight edge to the first name of each year.
As said by others, if Borg had won the Masters, many would have voted for the Swede. However it's interesting to note that at the time I'm writing this, Vilas leads the vote. It only convinces me even harder that one day or another I will have to study that year to make my mind clear.

The one thing I cannot understand is how anyone can pick Connors as number one for 1977. Can the people who picked Connors explain their reasoning to me?

Hello pc1,
given my last statement I am not absolutely sure that Connors wasn't #1 in 1977.
For the moment he was #3 in my opinion but Connors has won the Masters which I consider as the 3rd (ahead of Garros) or at worse the 3rd ex aequo event in 1977 and Jimbo reached the two greatest finals of the year besides on opposite surfaces (true grass and clay (but it is true on har tru) which neither Borg nor Vilas did, far from that.
In those 3 events (Wimby, Forest, MSG), possibly the most important of 1977 because the only ones where these 3 players entered,
Connors won 16 matches and lost 3 = 1 title + 2 finals,
Borg won 13 matches and lost 2 or 3 (it depends if we count his default in the Masters Round Robin or not) = 1 title + 1 final + 1 R of 16
and Vilas won 11 matches and lost 2 or 3 (as Borg, Guillermo defaulted in the Masters) = 1 title, 1 semi, 1 R of 32.
So Connors won the most important event on indoor, was 2nd in the most important grass event and was also 2nd in the most important clay (but har tru) event
whereas Borg clearly failed at the clay event (almost entirely due to his injury) and Vilas did the same at the grass event.
So in conclusion my first three for 1977 right now would be Borg-Vilas-Connors in that order but until I will have truly studied that year (and in reality all the years) I can't guarantee that this order is definitively fixed and I even don't dismiss Connors from the first place (but the probability that I place Connors #1 one day is very much closer to 0 than 1).

CyBorg
05-28-2009, 05:12 AM
haha .. Carlo Colussi votes Vilas. Carlo Giovanni Colussi however prefers Borg.

We've got dual personalities at work, Carlo? ;)

CyBorg
05-28-2009, 05:13 AM
I added a vote for Borg, although as mentioned it's very close and I see good reason for this to be a three-way tie.

krosero
05-28-2009, 08:07 AM
I just put in a vote for Borg, too, though I think this competition is extremely close. If there had been an option for Co-#1's, I might have gone with that.

jimbo333
05-28-2009, 02:51 PM
"Simple minded fools/ foil grimy crews"
-Nas

SCENARIO #1
It's not that difficult. Let's take 1999. If we take all the particapants on tour that year over the course of 11 months, and the winner is who's at the top in December, then I'd go with Agassi. I don't give a rat's *** if Sampras hands him his *** 4 out of their 5 meetings, or didn't do that, what I know is from Jan 1st to Dec 31st nobody performed better than Agassi. Hence he's "Player Of The Year".


SCENARIO #2
If we took all the participants from 1999, and had a singular tour, who would be the one to go with?? Sampras. Hence he may be considered "the best". Agassi may have a better year, and dealt with everyone (Pete incl.) over that span, but if he and Sampras meet in the final, it's not looking good for Dre.


Now relate this 1977. One scenario is Vilas, and one is Borg. I'll let you put whom where you see fit.

"Pass the dutchie on the left hand side" - Musical Youth

Look mate we are never going to agree on this!!!

I've explained many times that the agreed "player of the year" by analysis of results is ALWAYS the best player that year.

Any imaginary match up on an imaginary "fair" court, is irrelevant and just that, imaginary. Also head to head results is only part of the overall results when making the full analysis. I've made my point clearly before, and we will never agree.

(I'm right)

jimbo333
05-28-2009, 02:55 PM
Hello krosero and CyBorg.

We had strong disagreements in the past and we probably have others in the future but these 3 above postulates are wholly right.
1977 was the first year I truly witnessed the world tour tennis competition (the first time I heard of tennis champions was in 1973 but I was a 10-year old kid then) and at the time Borg, Vilas and even Connors were considered as the very top players and each one had numerous fans considering their favourite player as the top dog (most considered that at his very best Connors was the best of the three and so some of them still considered Jimbo as the #1 because of that).
It is clear that the context was very important : the French Open was not that important (except in my countrymen's view) then, Wimby was clearly more important (Forest too) than the French especially the years when many great players didn't bother to enter Garros. It is also clear that standards have dramatically changed since the past and will continue to in the future (perhaps Madrid would be a major and Paris a forgotten event, who knows ?).
Here I voted Borg as #1 but as I've said several times elsewhere with no absolute certainty, perhaps Vilas was #1.
As Borgforever put it in another post, for the moment, I think that Ashe-Connors, Connors-Borg, Borg-Vilas were co-No1 respectively in 1975, 1976 and 1977 but I grant a very slight edge to the first name of each year.
As said by others, if Borg had won the Masters, many would have voted for the Swede. However it's interesting to note that at the time I'm writing this, Vilas leads the vote. It only convinces me even harder that one day or another I will have to study that year to make my mind clear.



Hello pc1,
given my last statement I am not absolutely sure that Connors wasn't #1 in 1977.
For the moment he was #3 in my opinion but Connors has won the Masters which I consider as the 3rd (ahead of Garros) or at worse the 3rd ex aequo event in 1977 and Jimbo reached the two greatest finals of the year besides on opposite surfaces (true grass and clay (but it is true on har tru) which neither Borg nor Vilas did, far from that.
In those 3 events (Wimby, Forest, MSG), possibly the most important of 1977 because the only ones where these 3 players entered,
Connors won 16 matches and lost 3 = 1 title + 2 finals,
Borg won 13 matches and lost 2 or 3 (it depends if we count his default in the Masters Round Robin or not) = 1 title + 1 final + 1 R of 16
and Vilas won 11 matches and lost 2 or 3 (as Borg, Guillermo defaulted in the Masters) = 1 title, 1 semi, 1 R of 32.
So Connors won the most important event on indoor, was 2nd in the most important grass event and was also 2nd in the most important clay (but har tru) event
whereas Borg clearly failed at the clay event (almost entirely due to his injury) and Vilas did the same at the grass event.
So in conclusion my first three for 1977 right now would be Borg-Vilas-Connors in that order but until I will have truly studied that year (and in reality all the years) I can't guarantee that this order is definitively fixed and I even don't dismiss Connors from the first place (but the probability that I place Connors #1 one day is very much closer to 0 than 1).

Great stuff, this seems to be what great analysis is all about:)

(Connors No.1 for 77)
(Or Borg)
(Or Vilas)

Borgforever
05-28-2009, 05:41 PM
Quote from Björn Borg after Colgate (YEC) Masters -- Swedish Newspaper, January 1978.

"I couldn't do what Vilas did last year -- I would've gotten everyone against me. He's feeling it now though from everybody. Only the South American-players support him -- some reluctantly. But many outside tennis don't know how he achieved his results. Some of them are fine. Many are not. I want to win against the best. What's the point otherwise?"

Björn Borg on Vilas -- from his book MY LIFE AND GAME, written with Gene Scott -- interview from 1979 regarding Vilas:

"Guillermo is not as quick as McEnroe, Gerulaitis, Connors or myself. But we play the same type of game, except that I may do many things just a little bit better. Four or five years ago we used to practise(sic) together all the time. He was my best friend on the tour. Then Tiriac became Vilas's manager and our relationship changed. He hasn't seemed as open as before. Tiri even tried to change Vilas's game by making him serve and volley more. He doesn't seem to have as much confidence as when he was staying in the backcourt. His great winning streak in 1977 of ten tournaments in a row, including the USO, was all on clay. His ranking has dropped to six in the world. Maybe he should return to playing the way he used to. But I think Vilas needs someone like Tiri to lean on. It helps him mentally. When I play Vilas it's strange because I feel that I'm stronger -- which sounds crazy because Vilas is such a bull. Yet I sense if we rally back and forth seventy-five times, I'm going to outlast him. Of course I lose a lot of points, but I have the confidence to stay with him for ever. How can he hurt me? He can't serve and volley, and I can out-rally him."

Ion Tiriac on Borg (from the same book):

"Basically Borg is a more solid player than Vilas. You can beat Borg in only two ways, by attacking, or by outrunning him from the baseline. Vilas doesn't attack that well yet, and Borg is slightly better from the backcourt, so how can Vilas win? What makes the situation worse is Borg is so strong mentally. Normally, given Borg's slight stroking superiority, Vilas would win one out of three times, but because of his head, he loses eight out of eight times..... ....He also moves better than Rosewall. He gets to the ball way in advance, meaning he's both quick on his feet, and anticipates well. The final ingredient that puts Borg in the untouchable class is his percentage tennis. Vilas plays percentages from the backcourt but he's not as patient as Bjorn. Vilas is not just playing against Borg now, you know. We're all playing against his legend."

And here's SI article from January 1978 about the YEC Masters-tourney and the debate about who's Boss 1977:

http://vault.sportsillustrated.cnn.com/vault/article/magazine/MAG1135777/index.htm

Quote:

'"That's the best I can play," Connors said afterward. "Who's No. 1? It looks like we'll have to go out and do it all over again, doesn't it?"

Well, yes. Having lost Wimbledon to Borg and the U.S. Open to Vilas, Connors must have looked on the Masters as a close encounter of the third kind. Third place in the world rankings was staring him square in the face, even though the USTA computer ranked him first.

Let's look at the numbers. Though Connors won eight of the 21 tournaments he entered, his match record for the year was only 70-11, not as good as Borg's (13 victories in 20 tournaments, 78-8 in matches) and Vilas', who played just about every waking minute in compiling his 139-14 match record and 21 wins in 34 tournaments.

Borg's percentage, then, is slightly the best and he won the world championship as well. But Vilas won the U.S. and French titles and put together a streak of 55 clay victories while winning 83 of 85 matches on all surfaces. But Connors won the big bowl game at the end. What now? Head-to-head? Borg is 5-1 against the other big two, while Vilas is 2-3 and Connors a woeful 1-4.

If the Masters did not entirely decide who is No. 1, it did bring big-time tennis back to the Garden and, in the process, show everybody that the Masters is the Super Bowl of the game and the only real conclusion a tennis season has.

Perhaps because the tournament had only twice graced American soil, the Masters never had caught on. But this year Colgate—those same wonderful folks who invented Dermassage, Handi-Wipes and Dinah Shore—took over the tournament, signed a three-season deal with the Garden, moved the affair to an off-week for pro football, sold it to TV and promised to make the Masters an event. Among other marvelous arrangements, Colgate raised the total prize money to $400,000 and spent another $400,000 on advertising.

The most significant thing Colgate did, however, was persuade the eight best players in the world—Gottfried, Manuel Orantes, Raul Ramirez, Roscoe Tanner and Eddie Dibbs also were on hand—to show up, a feat previously considered impossible unless you guaranteed each of them $100,000 first-place money and a position at the head of the line at Studio 54. When Connors, who had skipped this tournament the past three years, barely qualified for the final berth and agreed to play, tournament organizers knew they had a winner.

The last time New Yorkers had seen—and been obnoxed by—Connors was when he stormed out of Forest Hills last September, claiming that his U.S. Open title had been "stolen" because of rude crowd behavior and bad line calls while he was losing the championship match to Vilas. Connors' return last week was less stimulating. He merely disrupted a player picture-taking session, walked out on a TV interviewer and snapped at a journalist who had the effrontery to ask why Connors was finally gracing the Masters with his presence. "Because I feel like it," he snorted.

Not surprisingly, Vilas, who had won the regular-season Grand Prix points race and its bonus pool of $300,000, did not seem to feel like it.

One day Vilas ripped the tournament to shreds in his soft, charming voice. "This Masters used to mean very much to me when it was in December and changed continents every year," he said. "Hopefully, someday it will be on clay. I don't prepare for this. If I don't have to come to collect $300,000, I no come. How badly I want to win? No badly."

Vilas' last remark would come as a shock to the crowd of 18,590 that packed the Garden on Thursday night to watch his 6-4, 3-6, 7-5 repeat victory over Connors."'

Also Björn Borg cheated in my opinion if he faked sickness to w.o. in his third round-robin. That's not okey in my book even if it's allowed. In January 1981 Borg tanked his last round-robin match at YEC Masters against Gene Mayer going down in flames to the tune of 6-0, 6-3. That's also a cheat even if it's allowed.

I dislike behaviour -- not people...

Borgforever
05-28-2009, 06:21 PM
Also in 1977 Borg had a winning percentage of 92,2% (!)...

With so many official tourney victories Borg raked in 300 000 total in 1977. He accepted playing at WTT for sixteen weeks for compensation of 300 000. Not chicken-feed in comparison to the other income. Borg accepted playing at WTT, not actually because of this sum, but because Mariana could play WTT and they could see each other more often. Playing the ordinary Grand Prix would've meant a lot of time away from each other. He sacrificed RG 1977 for their relationship basically.

At first playing for Cleveland Nets at WTT Borg made No. 1 results and stats, never being lower than third in the stats but mostly on top -- then came Wimbledon, which he won, then he returned to WTT to the surprise that his team-owner had sold all his home arena matches to the highest bidder (on the basis that a Wimby-winner was bringing in more cash for him playing around the States all the time) forcing him travel and play to dangerous amount. The injuries grew in number -- his results took a nose-dive and in August a muscle-pull in his shoulder became really bad when he practiced with Billy Martin -- an injury he had first felt during the hectic WTT-schedule. He could barely lift his arm to serve. But he entered the USO anyway. Usually I blame the player for injuries -- case in point, Wimby-1976-stomach-pull. No-one forced Borg to practice serve so much that he injured himself. But he was mistreated and forced by the team manager at WTT.

A further quote from Borg from the above mentioned book about the weird parallel tours and how they were manipulated by some players in those days:

"Players are now very clever at beating the computer system and often can calculate how their ranking will improve drastically by sitting out a week."

pc1
05-28-2009, 07:06 PM
Fantastic last two posts. I didn't realize Borg played WTT for Mariana.

It's a shame in retrospect, playing WTT potentially robbed him of two majors, the French and the U.S. Open.

It's funny but now that you mentioned WTT for Borg, I have a memory of Borg defeating Nastase in the WTT All Star Game 6-1 with Laver and Okker in the doubles against some other team that I can't remember. I think Laver and Okker won 6-1. This is from memory and I could be wrong. I think it was 1977.

DMan
05-28-2009, 10:29 PM
In 1977 if the ATP used today's ranking system, Vilas would have been the clear cut #1. They used an average system back then, which is why Connors was able to eke out #1.

Most experts tend to place a premium on majors won, overall excellence and consistency, and H2H.

Connors and Borg chose to skip a major - the French. And that was their choice to skip it. Same for the Australian (although I realize the Australian wasn't as big an event then as it is now. Then again, Connors wouldn't have pooh-poohed his Australian Open win in 1974.)

Also, everyone's basis for a ranking system is different. So those who favor winning big tournaments, and having the H2H advantage would take Borg over Vilas. Those who think the ATP computer was infallible (it wasn't) give the nod to Connors. Others still look at Vilas' season, and see how many matches he won, including 2 majors, and give him the nod.

1977 was one of the most interesting seasons in the Open era because 3 guys had a legitimate claim to being no. 1. And there were 5 majors contested that year to boot, with Gerulaitis claiming Australian Open II. All in all I think it was one of the most solid, most competitive seasons among the top 10 in the history of the men's game.

Carlo Giovanni Colussi
05-29-2009, 05:05 AM
haha .. Carlo Colussi votes Vilas. Carlo Giovanni Colussi however prefers Borg.

We've got dual personalities at work, Carlo? ;)

My usual name is "Carlo Colussi" and this is what I use(d) in Wikipedia. Then I discovered TalkTennis but someone else was already registered under that name (possibly his true name too) so I chose to use my full name "Carlo Giovanni Colussi" to enter that forum.

Carlo Giovanni Colussi
05-29-2009, 05:06 AM
Fantastic last two posts. I didn't realize Borg played WTT for Mariana.

It's a shame in retrospect, playing WTT potentially robbed him of two majors, the French and the U.S. Open.

It's funny but now that you mentioned WTT for Borg, I have a memory of Borg defeating Nastase in the WTT All Star Game 6-1 with Laver and Okker in the doubles against some other team that I can't remember. I think Laver and Okker won 6-1. This is from memory and I could be wrong. I think it was 1977.

In Evans's book Nastase said that he beat Borg for the last time in August 1977 in a WTT match 7-5 after Borg had led 5-2.

pc1
05-29-2009, 05:29 AM
In Evans's book Nastase said that he beat Borg for the last time in August 1977 in a WTT match 7-5 after Borg had led 5-2.

That may been regular season but I'm talking about the All Star Game.

Funny how you remember certain things. I recall Borg taking a huge swing forehand volley at the net and putting the ball away in that match and I thought to myself how unusual that was for Borg.

I'm fairly certain about the Borg Nastase all star game match but I'm a bit less certain on the doubles with Laver and Okker. I know they played together but I'm less certain of the score.

CyBorg
05-29-2009, 05:42 AM
In 1977 if the ATP used today's ranking system, Vilas would have been the clear cut #1.

Not likely. Assuming you also mean today's rules and surface standardization Vilas would not have gotten to double digits in events won.

jean pierre
05-29-2009, 06:25 AM
I don't even understand how it's possible to discuss about 1977 ! Just compare Borg's palmares and Vilas's palmares ! It's not the same world !

CyBorg
05-29-2009, 06:33 AM
I don't even understand how it's possible to discuss about 1977 ! Just compare Borg's palmares and Vilas's palmares ! It's not the same world !

I just ate some palmares. They were delicious.

Borgforever
05-29-2009, 07:01 AM
Hey CyB -- I made a poor answer to your WCT 1978 question since I didn't remember this. Borg signed to play WCT in 1977 but the WTT and Mariana suddenly became an option so he actually broke contract and left WCT 1977 and Hunt threatened with a major lawsuit which didn't happen since Borg offered to join in 1978 -- which he subsequently did -- but WCT merged with Grand Prix and -- well, read it all instead here instead:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Championship_Tennis

CyBorg
05-29-2009, 10:02 AM
Hey CyB -- I made a poor answer to your WCT 1978 question since I didn't remember this. Borg signed to play WCT in 1977 but the WTT and Mariana suddenly became an option so he actually broke contract and left WCT 1977 and Hunt threatened with a major lawsuit which didn't happen since Borg offered to join in 1978 -- which he subsequently did -- but WCT merged with Grand Prix and -- well, read it all instead here instead:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Championship_Tennis

The question was about the withdrawal from the semifinal of Dallas in 1978. That's what I was wondering. I thought maybe Borg had gotten hurt.

He should have won that event.

krosero
05-29-2009, 02:24 PM
The best Vilas for me? YEC Masters at Kooyong in 1974. There was a super-Guillermo if ever there was one. I wonder where he went...Apparently he made quite an impression defeating Newcombe and others.

This is from the New York Times:

Before the start of play, Vilas received a check for $119,844 for having finished first in the Grand Prix held over the last seven months. The eight top finishers are in the playoff here.

Australian tennis fans had suspected that Vilas won the top prize only because he had played in more tournaments than anyone else. But they sat stunned under heavy, overcast skies as he scored repeatedly against Newcombe with a sharp backhand and heavily spun lob.

Old-time Aussie stars, such as Frank Sedgman and Neale Fraser, said that on today's performance Vilas was the equal of Rod Laver.

Newcombe offered no excuses. He said:

"I was short of serving practice for the the last week because I had pulled a stomach muscle, but it didn't trouble me today. Vilas played great tennis. I didn't hit my volleys deep enough to keep him back and I paid the penalty for it."

Vilas, who has rarely played on grass, nevertheless said he was confident as he walked on the slick center court.

DMan
05-30-2009, 02:18 PM
Not likely. Assuming you also mean today's rules and surface standardization Vilas would not have gotten to double digits in events won.

I was just talking about the ranking system. Not surface standardization or anything like that. If they used a "Best of" system, the few bad losses Vilas suffered would have been discounted. With 2 majors, plus a RU at another I am sure Vilas would have been a clear cut #1. That said I like the system of averages. I am just not sure how they awarded and calculated the points back in 1977. Still seems odd Vilas was seeded #4 by the time of the US Open, given his YTD results (esp. compared to Gottfried).

CyBorg
05-30-2009, 04:32 PM
I was just talking about the ranking system. Not surface standardization or anything like that. If they used a "Best of" system, the few bad losses Vilas suffered would have been discounted. With 2 majors, plus a RU at another I am sure Vilas would have been a clear cut #1. That said I like the system of averages. I am just not sure how they awarded and calculated the points back in 1977. Still seems odd Vilas was seeded #4 by the time of the US Open, given his YTD results (esp. compared to Gottfried).

You haven't fully read the thread, have you? Let's pretend you're a student writing a short essay. Here's the question you have to address.

Q: What did CyBorg say about the problematics of counting majors and why is this important in regards to the decade in question?

Vegito
06-08-2009, 03:42 PM
I think that Vilas deserved to be number one, at least for one or two months(september-october, for his victory in the US Open and other tournaments), but the best in all the year was Connors because he had a better average in the major tournaments.

jean pierre
06-09-2009, 01:49 AM
I think that Vilas deserved to be number one, at least for one or two months(september-october, for his victory in the US Open and other tournaments), but the best in all the year was Connors because he had a better average in the major tournaments.

??? Connors did'nt win 1 Grand Slam this year !

jimbo333
06-09-2009, 04:18 PM
You haven't fully read the thread, have you? Let's pretend you're a student writing a short essay. Here's the question you have to address.

Q: What did CyBorg say about the problematics of counting majors and why is this important in regards to the decade in question?

You're talking about yourself in the third person again, I warned you about that:)

jimbo333
06-09-2009, 04:20 PM
I think that Vilas deserved to be number one, at least for one or two months(september-october, for his victory in the US Open and other tournaments), but the best in all the year was Connors because he had a better average in the major tournaments.

Yep, good point, if you just looked at the majors, Connors argubly had the best results due to consistency making him the No1 for 77:)

Unfortunately the majors is only part of the story, so it is officially a 3 way tie!!!

paolo2143
06-10-2009, 07:29 AM
Very hard to decide, i started watching tennis around 1975 so i remember this era from my youth and to me this was go9lden era of tennis.I personally went for Borg because that year he had to withdraw injured from us open and could not play french open both of which vilas one.I know vilas played well at french that year but at that time borg more or less owned vilas and in their 2 h2h matches that year borg won both comfortably so i think he would have beaten vilas at french.

Also over the year borg ahd the best win to loss ratio of all the top 3 hmself, vilas and connors.As i said there will always be a huge question mark over this year but i do remember the players at year end vote gave award of best player of year to Borg for 1977 which should count for something.

jean pierre
06-10-2009, 08:17 AM
Very hard to decide, i started watching tennis around 1975 so i remember this era from my youth and to me this was go9lden era of tennis.I personally went for Borg because that year he had to withdraw injured from us open and could not play french open both of which vilas one.I know vilas played well at french that year but at that time borg more or less owned vilas and in their 2 h2h matches that year borg won both comfortably so i think he would have beaten vilas at french.

Also over the year borg ahd the best win to loss ratio of all the top 3 hmself, vilas and connors.As i said there will always be a huge question mark over this year but i do remember the players at year end vote gave award of best player of year to Borg for 1977 which should count for something.

I'm sorry, but it's absurd to say "if Borg was at the French ...". We just have to compare the results, and not to say "if". And the results of Vilas were very very better in 1977 than the results of Borg. That's all !

jimbo333
06-10-2009, 01:04 PM
I'm sorry, but it's absurd to say "if Borg was at the French ...". We just have to compare the results, and not to say "if". And the results of Vilas were very very better in 1977 than the results of Borg. That's all !

Well if you are just going to look at results mate. The official No.1 at year end was Connors, this is a result:)

jean pierre
06-11-2009, 06:25 AM
Well if you are just going to look at results mate. The official No.1 at year end was Connors, this is a result:)

You're right ! But I was not talking about the official ranking ATP, but about results on tournaments. Rios was n°1 at the ATP, and it's ridiculous : he never won any big tournament.

jimbo333
06-11-2009, 04:54 PM
You're right ! But I was not talking about the official ranking ATP, but about results on tournaments. Rios was n°1 at the ATP, and it's ridiculous : he never won any big tournament.

Was Rios really ranked ATP No.1 at the end of any year at all? Really? When? Which year?

jean pierre
06-12-2009, 05:16 AM
Was Rios really ranked ATP No.1 at the end of any year at all? Really? When? Which year?

Not at the end of the year. But even in the middle of the year, it was ridiculous. And it is ridiculous that Vilas has never been n°1 ATP, even in the middle of the year.

paolo2143
06-12-2009, 09:37 AM
I'm sorry, but it's absurd to say "if Borg was at the French ...". We just have to compare the results, and not to say "if". And the results of Vilas were very very better in 1977 than the results of Borg. That's all !

sorry that is simply not true ,borg had a better overall win loss record than anybody that year including vilas and he did win their 2 h2h matches as well.The fact is there will never be total agreement about that year and even the experts at the time were pretty evenly divided amongst all 3 players but at end of year poll the players did give the nod to borg.

jimbo333
06-12-2009, 10:05 AM
I'm sorry, but it's absurd to say "if Borg was at the French ...". We just have to compare the results, and not to say "if". And the results of Vilas were very very better in 1977 than the results of Borg. That's all !

sorry that is simply not true ,borg had a better overall win loss record than anybody that year including vilas and he did win their 2 h2h matches as well.The fact is there will never be total agreement about that year and even the experts at the time were pretty evenly divided amongst all 3 players but at end of year poll the players did give the nod to borg.

Well you can't rely on what the players thought. Most of them still hated Connors for a start, after the 74 dabacle!

If you had to pick one, I suppose it would have to be Vilas, but really it should be a 3 way tie:)

paolo2143
06-13-2009, 03:23 PM
As i said there will never be a unanimous outcome for this year,all i can say is that the majority of experts at time gave slight nod to borg but as you said it could just as easily have been 3 way tie.That uear in 77 was where borg really stated for first time to take edge over connors which he expanded on over next 4 seasons and vilas whilst remaining a great player never quite reached same heights again in terms of consistency.

jean pierre
09-14-2009, 10:16 AM
Vilas, end of story. If Borg played in the French Open things might have been different, but he didn't, so the Bull from Pampas is 1977 Player Of The Year.

That's the truth ! Bravo !

hoodjem
09-14-2009, 11:12 AM
It'll never end.



P.S. Was there a time when Borg, Connors, McEnroe, Vilas, and Lendl were ranked 1-5 in the world?

David_86
09-14-2009, 12:30 PM
I think Borg was the better player in 1977 but Vilas deserved the no.1 ranking. If they had entered the same tournaments then I bet Borg would have shown himself to be clearly superior but they didn't and it is not fair to hold that against Vilas. He put in the effort.

vive le beau jeu !
09-18-2009, 02:25 AM
I dont think Connors deserved #1 in 1977 at all personally but he still should atleast be included on the poll with Borg and Vilas.
same here...

unfortunately, until 1989 there was these both ATP/GP ranking systems co-working, so the year-end #1 (ATP) spot is sometimes a bit suspicious, such as in 1977 !

did anybody try to re-compute the rankings for those years ?
(even if setting some parameters for the ranking system is always debatable...)

borg number one
09-18-2009, 02:33 PM
Hoodjem, you asked about the top 5, Borg/Mcenroe, Connors, Vilas, Lendl. If I remember correctly, Lendl hit the scene with force in 1981. By then, I believe Vitas was around the top 5, with Vilas farther down perhaps 6-10, along with Clerc and others. When Lendl emerged, Vitas dropped off, so I don't think it was ever Borg, Mcenroe (1-2, or 2-1), Connors, Vilas and Lendl in that top 5 group. Please correct me if I'm wrong. Thanks.

hoodjem
09-18-2009, 05:15 PM
^^^I bet you are correct.

I was just imagining that these five (Borg, Connors, McEnroe, Vilas, and Lendl) might be the best/strongest top-5 OAT, if it existed.

borg number one
09-18-2009, 06:27 PM
Very good point Hoodjem, I think we just missed out on that happening, but man were there a lot of good players at the top back then!

jean pierre
02-24-2010, 08:04 AM
Why ATP doesn't say officially : OK, 1977 was a mistake, Vilas was n°1. It would be so simple (and so fair !)

Mustard
02-24-2010, 11:09 AM
Vilas was definitely the number 1 of 1977, without any doubt. That streak in the second half of the year was insane, winning 72 of his last 73 matches, the only loss being the controversial spaghetti strung racquet match with Nastase. Borg, and especially Connors, just didn't have the results that year to match up to Vilas.

jean pierre
02-24-2010, 11:13 PM
Vilas was definitely the number 1 of 1977, without any doubt. That streak in the second half of the year was insane, winning 72 of his last 73 matches, the only loss being the controversial spaghetti strung racquet match with Nastase. Borg, and especially Connors, just didn't have the results that year to match up to Vilas.

You're right !!

Vegito
10-23-2010, 11:15 PM
http://raquetasytenis.weebly.com/uploads/3/3/5/0/3350499/5549846_orig.jpg