View Full Version : When Does Extremely Talented/Destined for Greatness Beccome Wasted Potential?

05-28-2012, 01:53 PM
Think Donald Young, Ernests Gulbis. At what age should you have won an ATP level tournament? MS1000? Glandslam? if you're ever going to do those things. I can't see Young ever winning a MS1000. I think he's only made one ATP tournament final in his career. Raonic, Dimitrov, Harrison (feel free to add more that you can think of), are now in that 20,21, 22 year old slot. At what point do the "experts" (me, you, and everyone) start to feel that they might just not have enough (talent, work ethic, weapons, serve) to get into that top 10, top 5 position.

Sorry, this is kind of a vague post, but I'm in the mood to ask this question after reading about another Harrison flame-out in a big tournament. I don't think he's even made it to the the 3rd round of a slam. He had two semis last summer on hc (Atlanta and LA) and another semi at San Jose earlier this year. Someone had an interesting post a couple of days ago about Federer stinking it up in slams (with the exception of '01 Wimby, and then all of a sudden exploding right before his 22nd bday. Is there a magic age that they have to break through, 22, 23, before losing in slams and MS 1000s just become too routine?

05-28-2012, 02:10 PM
When their career's over.

05-28-2012, 02:24 PM
dude.. think Andres Gomez and Michael Chang.

05-28-2012, 07:46 PM
Wasted potential? No. More like "misjudged intangibles." You blame the player, I blame those who misjudged the player from the beginning. The two examples you give, Young and Gulbis, both came from extremely comfortable backgrounds and never seemed to have the fire in the belly to rise to greatness. Pro tennis is a very narrow pyramid with very little space at the top, and too many players are heralded as "the next big thing" before enough is really known about who they are and what's in their gut.

Disgruntled Worker
05-28-2012, 07:52 PM
It's NEVER too late to turn it around. Just ask Brian Baker!

05-28-2012, 09:01 PM
Most critics and commentators are relics from the 80's/90's where teenage talent like that was common. Players at the top are getting older now and its harder for teens to make it. There still may be another explosion up the rankings a-la Nadal 2004, but somehow I doubt it.

Its odd actually. The game is more physical than ever and you'd expect younger players to thrive. Apparently not.