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View Full Version : What would a player need to do to be GOAT?


vid
06-08-2009, 05:42 PM
Considering how often the Rafa vs Federer (and Sampras) comes up in these Greatest of All Time discussions. What do you think a player (could be hypothetical or currently active) absolutely needs to accomplish to be considered without doubt the greatest of all time in today's tennis game?

Which of these criteria is absolutely necessary?

1) Win all 4 grand slams, gold medal, year end championship
2) Win all 4 grand slams in same year
3) Win golden slam in same year
4) Win golden slam & year end championship in same year

5) Have the most grand slam title wins
6) Have the most title wins of each grand slam
7) Have the most consecutive title wins of each grand slam
8) Have the most title wins

9) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody
10) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody in grand slam finals
11) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody in all finals
12) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody on any individual surface

13) Most weeks as #1 ranked player
14) Most weeks in a row as #1 ranked player

15) Have the longest undefeated streak
16) Have the longest undefeated streak on each surface

17) Become immortal and continue beating all those future stars even if you have to do it in a wheelchair.
18) Go back in time and beat Borg, McEnroe, Sampras, Agassi, Connor, Lendl, Wilander when they were in their prime on their best surfaces, also beat Margaret Court & Steffi Graf for fun too.
19) Make more money than Anna Kournikova through advertising & endorsements.
20) Win a grand slam the Michael Chang way.

21) Insert your own criteria.

Considering how often the Rafa vs Federer (and Sampras) comes up in these Greatest of All Time discussions. What do you think a player (could be hypothetical or currently active) absolutely needs to accomplish to be considered without doubt the greatest of all time in today's tennis game?

Which of this criteria is absolutely necessary?

1) Win all 4 grand slams, gold medal, year end championship
2) Win all 4 grand slams in same year
3) Win golden slam in same year
4) Win golden slam & year end championship in same year

5) Have the most grand slam title wins
6) Have the most title wins of each grand slam
7) Have the most consecutive title wins of each grand slam
8) Have the most title wins

9) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody
10) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody in grand slam finals
11) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody in all finals
12) Not have a losing H2H record to anybody on any individual surface

13) Most weeks as #1 ranked player
14) Most weeks in a row as #1 ranked player

15) Have the longest undefeated streak
16) Have the longest undefeated streak on each surface

17) Become immortal and continue beating all those future stars even if you have to do it in a wheelchair.
18) Go back in time and beat Borg, McEnroe, Sampras, Agassi, Connor, Lendl, Wilander when they were in their prime on their best surfaces, also beat Margaret Court & Steffi Graf for fun too.
19) Make more money than Anna Kournikova through advertising & endorsements.
20) Win a grand slam the Michael Chang way.

21) Insert your own criteria.

Also should doubles titles also come into the debate when considering the greatest player of all time or just singles titles?

samster
06-08-2009, 05:45 PM
Win every match he/she has ever played without losing. Losing is not tolerated. That's the TTW criteria.

vid
06-08-2009, 06:01 PM
ah crap didn't realized i copied and pasted twice.

tudwell
06-08-2009, 06:07 PM
Being number one is by far the most important criteria. How can you be the greatest of all time, if you're not even the greatest in your own time? Of course, to be number one, you have to win lots of tournaments, the more the better, especially the slams. So if you're number one for, say, 7 total years, you'll inevitably pick up a large number of slams. If, however, someone who is never number one wins a single slam each season and plays for twenty years.... well, they'd have the slam record, but to me that's not nearly as impressive as the type of week-in week-out domination it takes to be number one.

That's why I think slam count is really rather silly (even more so considering the history of the sport and the nearly 100 year pro-amateur divide).

S H O W S T O P P E R !
06-08-2009, 06:10 PM
There can't BE a GOAT. The eras are so different that you simply can't compare. We can't predict a Fed v. Borg matchup or any other cross-generational match. The courts have changed, the rackets have changed, players are fitter, playing styles have changed. It's just impossible.

drake
06-08-2009, 06:21 PM
To be the Greatest Of All Time, the player would have to be immortal.

mtommer
06-08-2009, 06:22 PM
For there to be a GOAT each tournament would have to have the "winner" play every single player in the ooooooh let's say top 25. The eventual winner must continue to play and beat every other tennis player at every single tournament entered and the winner would have to play every single tournament. All the other players would also have to show they are not easy pickins' by coming oooooooohhhhhhhhhhh so close to winning every time.

helloworld
06-08-2009, 06:48 PM
You have to break all the records to become the GOAT, which I doubt would ever happen in men's tennis.

TennisFan481
06-08-2009, 07:22 PM
Win a calendar slam 3 times in an era in which there are other established "great players" (at least, so people think) who aren't over the age of 30 yet.

Let's say John Doe bursts onto the scene and wins the calendar slam the next 3 years, beating the likes of Federer and Nadal in the SFs and Fs each time...and in straight sets, no less. At that point, I think everyone would accept that he's the greatest player in history...especially if John Doe had a devastating forehand, backhand, slice, dropshot, serve, and return game, and ran a 4.3 40 yard dash.

It's interesting that the only universally accepted "GOAT" is Jerry Rice. Anyone who dares question his status as Greatest WR of All Time (I have actually done so) is seen as an eccentric/nutjob/conspiracy theorist, basically.

crazylevity
06-08-2009, 11:50 PM
Eat grass.

RCizzle65
06-08-2009, 11:56 PM
Eat grass.

LMAO
Anyways, I don't think it will ever be settled, it is just an opinion anyways, Graf has 22 grand slam titles and some people don't think she is the GOAT since Seles should have been her competition....

vid
06-09-2009, 11:15 AM
Assuming there's a good number of top caliber players.

I would say that bare minimum you'd need to have won each grand slam and to have the most grand slam titles and not have a losing record to any of your main rivals and you'd need to have the most weeks as #1 player.

I've never found the year end championships or gold medal to be particular prestigious.

I think a GOAT player would be one who's versatile but dominates on at least one surface. I don't think there will ever be a GOAT that dominates on all surfaces. It's just impossible, you have to specialize a bit eventually.

Federer will always have that Nadal & Murray H2H keeping him from being THE GOAT rather than one of the GOATs. H2H isn't a perfect criteria but it's hard to argue with it when a player has no losing H2H to any significant rival. Technically Patrick Rafter has a 3-0 record against Federer but I don't think anybody would use that against Fed because that was early in his career and if Rafter's shoulder had held up, Fed may have had a few chances to even the score.

I'm a Federer fan all the way (before him Rafter & Agassi) but I do feel that Nadal in the future (assuming his knees don't give out) can eclipse Federer as a GOAT. Nadal doesn't have any lopsided H2H even on his "weaker" surfaces to overcome. At the moment I feel Federer is a better all around player than Nadal. Federer can dominate on hard and grass perhaps not quite as much as Nadal on clay.

In terms of their ability to me Nadal doesn't have any obvious weaknesses except maybe his 2nd serve while at times Federer's backhand seems to be really bad. I'm surprised only Nadal seems capable of exploiting that.

theduh
06-09-2009, 11:17 AM
Eat grass.

LMAO! Yeah eat grass in the morning and eat clay during supper.

theduh
06-09-2009, 11:18 AM
Ride a time machine, beat the crap out of the past greats, come back in time and be immortal. You'll be GOAT after that.

AAAA
06-09-2009, 11:23 AM
Change his name to Pete Sampras or Laver or some other player from the days of wooden racquets.