PDA

View Full Version : Sampras/Federer: 'The G.O.A.T' argument ended.


Galactus
05-20-2006, 11:17 AM
Federer is the most talented of the two, but in terms of 'greatest' and 'achievements', then Sampras is the only contender:
Level of opposition, stats, Slams won, titles won, etc:

Pete Sampras
Level of opposition: Andre Agassi** (20-14); Jim Courier** (16-4); Goran Ivanisevic (12-6); Boris Becker** (12-7); Michael Chang (12-7) Patrick Rafter (12-4) **denotes multi-Slam winner
Slams: 14
AMS Masters: 11
Masters Cup: 5
Singles: 34
No.1 for 286 weeks
[f]Finished[/b] at No.1 for 6 years running
Best year stats: 1994 (77-12: 2 Slams; 8 ATP titles)

Roger Federer
Level of opposition: Marat Safin** (7-2); Andy Roddick (10-1); Lleyton Hewitt** (11-7); Andre Agassi** (8-3)
Slams: 7
AMS Masters: 10
Masters Cup: 2
Singles: 19
No.1 for 120 weeks
[f]Will finish[/b] at No.1 for 3 years
Best year: 2004 (77-6: 3 Slams; 8 ATP titles)

theprophe
05-20-2006, 11:47 AM
Of course sampras is G.O.A.T, and he will be for 1 or 2 more years

Breaker
05-20-2006, 11:52 AM
Well of course Sampras is greater at the moment. Federer still has a few years left to prove himself and gather the titles and slams to match up or pass Sampras.

Max G.
05-20-2006, 12:01 PM
Clearly - you had your word, and that ends the argument. I think we'll all be quiet and go away now, the master hath spoken!

Galactus
05-20-2006, 12:23 PM
Clearly - you had your word, and that ends the argument. I think we'll all be quiet and go away now, the master hath spoken!
:mrgreen:

Mr.Federer
05-20-2006, 03:04 PM
Federer is the most talented of the two, but in terms of 'greatest' and 'achievements', then Sampras is the only contender:
Level of opposition, stats, Slams won, titles won, etc:

Pete Sampras
Level of opposition: Andre Agassi** (20-14); Jim Courier** (16-4); Goran Ivanisevic (12-6); Boris Becker** (12-7); Michael Chang (12-7) Patrick Rafter (12-4) **denotes multi-Slam winner
Slams: 14
AMS Masters: 11
Masters Cup: 5
Singles: 34
No.1 for 286 weeks
[f]Finished[/b] at No.1 for 6 years running
Best year stats: 1994 (77-12: 2 Slams; 8 ATP titles)

Roger Federer
Level of opposition: Marat Safin** (7-2); Andy Roddick (10-1); Lleyton Hewitt** (11-7); Andre Agassi** (8-3)
Slams: 7
AMS Masters: 10
Masters Cup: 2
Singles: 19
No.1 for 120 weeks
[f]Will finish[/b] at No.1 for 3 years
Best year: 2004 (77-6: 3 Slams; 8 ATP titles)


This is so stupid...Federer has still got at least 5 years of tennis left in him before he retires.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-20-2006, 03:26 PM
I agree. As much as I like Roger, I dont understand at all conversations on whether he is the best ever yet, only because he has not yet accomplished enough for that serious of consideration for it. I do think he deserves huge recognition, he is by far the best player in the World today, Nadal dominates him head to head, but Nadal is not consistent enough on hard courts reaching the end of touranments yet to be considered the best, so Roger is clearly the best player in the World today; and his 7 slams and dominat 04 and 05 seasons puts him on in the same realm as some great great players(Edberg, Becker, McEnroe, Lendl perhaps, Wilander). However GOAT arguments are a bit early.

Aykhan Mammadov
05-20-2006, 03:50 PM
All those are statistics. They mean much but not everything. We watched McEnroe, we watched Borg, Agassi and Sampras. And of course we are watching Federer.

And do u want the whole world of tennis professionals and fans believe in statistics more than to their own eyes ? It is obvious that Federer is more talented player playing better tennis than anybody in the history before him.

Statistics doesn't show all the realities of the time. For example Don Budge somwhen made Grand Slam, so what do u mean he played better tennis than Fed ? Or great player Rios was No1 but never won Slam, do u mean he doesn't worth recalling ?

I think with years passing at least the quantity of people living on Earth is increasing radically, so every competition becomes harder. Coming to tennis number of players is increasing and tennis is booming now. Look at Russian players for example. Who they were? Now look how many players they have. Tennis becoming harder and harder, faster and faster, more competitive, and to win now 10 slams may mean winning 20 slams 40 years ago.

Better ask Agassi who is better player Sampras or Roger. My opinion Roger is much more diversified player and more interesting to watch than Sampras.

Eviscerator
05-20-2006, 04:49 PM
Sampras is the only contender:


Hmmm, I wonder how Laver is being left out of this discussion?:rolleyes:

sureshs
05-20-2006, 04:53 PM
Hmmm, I wonder how Laver is being left out of this discussion?:rolleyes:

I think the definition was narrowed to GOAT = best who could not win the French, so that Laver and Agassi are excluded by definition and Sampras and Federer are happily included and the discussion focuses on them only.

superman1
05-20-2006, 05:02 PM
Federer is not the best ever. Not yet, anyway. Sampras is the greatest.

And to call someone the best ever who doesn't have the stats to back it up, that really isn't fair to the guys that played with wood frames and dead strings. They couldn't rip through the ball effortlessly from the baseline like Federer. With a wooden racquet, Fed's game would be completely different.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-20-2006, 05:23 PM
I dont think Sampras is the greatest either personaly. I rate Borg, Laver, Gonzalez, and Rosewall all over him. Roger is even further down the list than that though. I would rate him over Becker and Edberg now though, and after this year I will almost certainly rate him over Wilander and Newcombe as well.

Eviscerator
05-20-2006, 07:56 PM
I think the definition was narrowed to GOAT = best who could not win the French, so that Laver and Agassi are excluded by definition and Sampras and Federer are happily included and the discussion focuses on them only.

I did not see that stipulation in the OP, but maybe you know something that others do not:confused:

While Federer might some day surpass Sampras or Laver, he cannot be put in that category yet. He has the potential, but until it happens, it is mere speculation.

The bottom line is that you cannot have a discussion of who is the "GOAT" in men's tennis without naming arguably the best ever in Rod Laver.

DoubleHanded&LovinIt
05-20-2006, 09:37 PM
Close, but no cigar would be an understatement.

Fischer76
05-21-2006, 01:21 AM
Federer is the most talented of the two, but in terms of 'greatest' and 'achievements', then Sampras is the only contender:
Level of opposition, stats, Slams won, titles won, etc:

Pete Sampras
Level of opposition: Andre Agassi** (20-14); Jim Courier** (16-4); Goran Ivanisevic (12-6); Boris Becker** (12-7); Michael Chang (12-7) Patrick Rafter (12-4) **denotes multi-Slam winner
Slams: 14
AMS Masters: 11
Masters Cup: 5
Singles: 34
No.1 for 286 weeks
[f]Finished[/b] at No.1 for 6 years running
Best year stats: 1994 (77-12: 2 Slams; 8 ATP titles)

Roger Federer
Level of opposition: Marat Safin** (7-2); Andy Roddick (10-1); Lleyton Hewitt** (11-7); Andre Agassi** (8-3)
Slams: 7
AMS Masters: 10
Masters Cup: 2
Singles: 19
No.1 for 120 weeks
[f]Will finish[/b] at No.1 for 3 years
Best year: 2004 (77-6: 3 Slams; 8 ATP titles)


People comparing RF with Sampras must be over their heads. At this time, he can be compared with Agassi. If and when RF reaches 13 GS then I think the comparison with PS would be in good order. When that happens, then a comparison on week as #1 should also be taken into account. I think that's a pretty stiff climb for RF. Very stiff indeed.

superman1
05-21-2006, 02:07 AM
At this point, he still hasn't reached Agassi - hasn't gotten the same # of Slams (just one more), hasn't won as many Masters series tournaments (I think Agassi has won more than anyone), and hasn't proven that he can adapt to different generations of players. He's already having trouble with Nadal, and there are more newcomers to come.

Agassi will be the first to say that Fed is the best he's ever played, but maybe he's basing that on Fed's streak against him. Older athletes never seem to be able to admit that they aren't what they used to be, especially when they are still very good. If Agassi had to play 1995 Pete Sampras today, he'd be just as hopeless.

Galactus
05-21-2006, 02:25 AM
All those are statistics. They mean much but not everything. We watched McEnroe, we watched Borg, Agassi and Sampras. And of course we are watching Federer.

And do u want the whole world of tennis professionals and fans believe in statistics more than to their own eyes ? It is obvious that Federer is more talented player playing better tennis than anybody in the history before him.

Statistics doesn't show all the realities of the time. For example Don Budge somwhen made Grand Slam, so what do u mean he played better tennis than Fed ? Or great player Rios was No1 but never won Slam, do u mean he doesn't worth recalling ?

I think with years passing at least the quantity of people living on Earth is increasing radically, so every competition becomes harder. Coming to tennis number of players is increasing and tennis is booming now. Look at Russian players for example. Who they were? Now look how many players they have. Tennis becoming harder and harder, faster and faster, more competitive, and to win now 10 slams may mean winning 20 slams 40 years ago.

Better ask Agassi who is better player Sampras or Roger. My opinion Roger is much more diversified player and more interesting to watch than Sampras.
I agree. Federer is technically the better player. But there's also the argument that states, 'Yes he is....but against inferior opposition'.
But, let's say the wheels came off his wagon this year, his form dropped and he only won 2, maybe 3 more slams for the rest of his career......would he then be considered 'The G.O.A.T'?

Snooker
05-21-2006, 05:43 AM
A comparison at the same age is the only appropriate comparison and it shows that both players are quite even in their achievements. Only time will tell if Fed can surpass Sampras in terms of winning titles etc.

http://www.tennis28.com/studies/Federer_Sampras.html

Kevin T
05-21-2006, 09:52 AM
An athlete's memory is short and Agassi saying Fed is much better, IMHO, is a proud athlete (Agassi) covering his rear that Fed has dominated and a proud athlete unwilling to accept the fact that he is 10 years past his prime. As for Fed being the GOAT; how can you make that case when he is being DOMINATED by a contemporary? An "in his prime" Fed being dominated by Nadal who will only get better? Sampras had a losing head to head record against a few players but never in important matches like Masters Series or Grand Slams tournaments and never in his prime. Safin's, Hewitt's and Fed's wins all came during the downslide of Pete's career. A wise man once said; "The hammer and the nail are not rivals". For the moment, Nadal=Hammer and Fed=Nail. That's a hard thing for me to say, because I much prefer Fed and his game to Nadal's ping pong game but it's the truth. Fed is still the man because he wins the most Slams, accrues the most points, etc., but he has a big Achilles' Heel named Nadal.

superman1
05-21-2006, 10:08 AM
He just hasn't proven that he can handle the younger, flashier players that come along as he gets older and goes through the same tennis season over and over. Sampras didn't care who was on the other side of the net. His game worked against anyone, and if he wanted it bad enough, he would win. He stopped wanting it as bad once he was older and was tired of tennis. Agassi wanted it more and more to make up for lost time, and it's taken some pretty long-term injuries to finally slow him down. Only after Fed retires will we be able to assess his all-time position. For now, he's just the undisputed #1 and will easily go into the Hall of Fame.

Galactus
05-21-2006, 11:19 AM
An athlete's memory is short and Agassi saying Fed is much better, IMHO, is a proud athlete (Agassi) covering his rear that Fed has dominated and a proud athlete unwilling to accept the fact that he is 10 years past his prime. As for Fed being the GOAT; how can you make that case when he is being DOMINATED by a contemporary? An "in his prime" Fed being dominated by Nadal who will only get better? Sampras had a losing head to head record against a few players but never in important matches like Masters Series or Grand Slams tournaments and never in his prime. Safin's, Hewitt's and Fed's wins all came during the downslide of Pete's career. A wise man once said; "The hammer and the nail are not rivals". For the moment, Nadal=Hammer and Fed=Nail. That's a hard thing for me to say, because I much prefer Fed and his game to Nadal's ping pong game but it's the truth. Fed is still the man because he wins the most Slams, accrues the most points, etc., but he has a big Achilles' Heel named Nadal.
Good point. Federer is currently 1-5 down against Nadal.
I don't ever recall Sampras running into a player he got contsistently beaten by like this...and in finals too. Micheal Stich (4-5) and Paul Haarhuis (1-3) got good results against him, but Richard Krajicek (4-6) is the only guy apart from Andre Agassi who got 4 straight wins against him in his prime (and none were in finals)...

Chadwixx
05-21-2006, 11:21 AM
Sampras had a losing head to head record against a few players but never in important matches like Masters Series or Grand Slams tournaments and never in his prime.

If sampras were good enough to make it to a clay court masters series final (more than once) maybe this would have happened. Sampras either won a weak field (like his italian open title) or lost early. While fed consistently goes the distance.

Its funny how people discredit agassi because they disagree with his opinions. Its like they know more than the guys who were actually on the court playing against both. Its pretty laughable actually.

5-1 isnt domination. Nadal is still young and full of fire. Lets see how his physical game holds up over the next few years. Also people are forgetting that fed/nadal matches are played on even surfaces or surfaces that give nadal an edge. Fed vs nadal on fast hard court or grass would be a different story. But, nadal cant make it to the finals in those events so they never happen. Where as fed can make it to the finals on his off surfaces.

Greatest acheivements goes to sampras until someone can pass his records (which arent that great when you look at his draws, then again americans always seem to get favorable ones at the us open). The better player though is fed, as your own eyes can see, as agassi and moya have told you, and proven by their head to head record.

superman1
05-21-2006, 11:30 AM
No one's discrediting Agassi's opinion. I also think that Federer is better overall than Sampras, at least for the moment. He has the advantage of better strings, but maybe he's also more talented. But I don't believe what Agassi said about there being a place to go with Sampras, whereas with Fed there's no chance. To me it seemed like Agassi was on his way to winning that US Open title against Federer, whereas in 2002 he seemed amazed that he even won a set. Sampras gave him absolutely no room to breathe. Agassi made these comments in a press conference immediately after losing the US Open, he was 35, Fed had a big winning streak against him...what other conclusion could there be other than Fed is just the best of all time? I think there's more to it. He is obviously the best guy to ask since he actually played these guys, but the fans watched these guys from a different perspective, and we can actually see things that they might have missed. We have points and shots memorized that they don't even remember. I've never seen Agassi's eyes wider and more alert than when he's playing Sampras. But maybe he didn't notice that.

Chadwixx
05-21-2006, 11:44 AM
Ill take the modern agassi over the one sampras was beating in the 90's. 30more mph on the serve, and an average of 20 on the groundies. Some say steriods/hgh others say he hit the weights, either way his fitness went way up along with his strength. Just watch that 1991 (i think us open final) its like a barry bonds on the pirates compared to bonds on the giants.

Agassi is much better now (well last year, this year the atp is no longer doing their own testing so its not real easy to hide, thus agassi's inability to play) than he was 10 years ago.

Kevin T
05-22-2006, 07:29 AM
Chadwixx, would you take the Washington Wizards Jordan or the Chicago Bulls Jordan? The Arizona Cardinals Emmitt Smith or the Cowboys version? Jordan said he still thought he was a top 5 player while with the Wizards. Yeah, right. Just like the people that say King James is better than Jordan at this stage. Play a little D and nail 100's of game-winning shots and we'll talk. I'll take the Agassi of 1999 over any version. And guess what? Sampras still smoked him when it counted. And 30 more mph on the serve? Was Agassi serving 95 or 100mph in the 90's? Was he playing the WTA tour or the ATP?

5-1 isn't domination? Losing 80% of your matches against an opponent isn't domination? A 1-5 record while you are in your prime and your opponent is just coming into his own? The fast vs. slow hard court argument is ridiculous as well. If Fed is really the second coming, he should be winning the hard court matches, no matter the speed. Clay is another matter.

I won't concede that Fed is the greatest player ever until he passes Sampras' records. Just because Sampras didn't possess the complete game of Fed, doesn't mean he wouldn't have beaten Fed regularly. Unfortunately, we'll never know.

Galactus
05-22-2006, 08:07 AM
Ill take the modern agassi over the one sampras was beating in the 90's. 30more mph on the serve....

http://www.fightbeat.com/forums/images/smilies/jester.gif

Grimjack
05-22-2006, 08:18 AM
Good point. Federer is currently 1-5 down against Nadal.
I don't ever recall Sampras running into a player he got contsistently beaten by like this...and in finals too. Micheal Stich (4-5) and Paul Haarhuis (1-3) got good results against him, but Richard Krajicek (4-6) is the only guy apart from Andre Agassi who got 4 straight wins against him in his prime (and none were in finals)...

The missing part of the argument is that Sampras would have been utterly dominated by...just to pick a name from the era...Gustavo Kuerten, had he consistently met him in the finals of clay tournaments.

But Pete was nowhere near good enough to get that deep in clay tournaments. Fed is.

Fed dominates the rest of the year in even more impressive fashion than Pete did, AND gets to the finals of virtually every clay court event, now. Nadal doesn't "dominate" him. The results are skewed because while Roger justifies his seed by getting to the end of every clay tourney, Nadal doesn't, by coming up short everywhere else for most of the year.

The way to dominate is not simply to dominate head-to-head. Federer can't be blamed for Nadal's inability to step up and challenge him at three of the four slams. When Nadal rolls over at those venues, Fed DOES dominate him. It shows up in the history books, and it shows up in the rankings. It simply doesn't show up in the h2h results, because Nadal isn't competitive enough to make that happen.

As it stands, Pete had a 2-1 advantage over Guga, all on hard. If he had ended his career with a 9-2 deficit against GK, including 0-7 on clay, all in semis and finals, his career would have been stronger. Despite being "dominated." As it was, he simply wasn't relevant enough on clay to amass losing records against the best claycourters.

Grimjack
05-22-2006, 08:20 AM
That said, it appears to me that Fed has also now pretty much worked out the Nadal puzzle on clay.

So I'd expect those results to get even closer in the upcoming seasons (with a continued lack of competitiveness from Nadal at most other venues). All of which will put Fed's relative dominance even FURTHER ahead of Petey's.

AAAA
05-22-2006, 10:20 AM
If we can't make the case because Fed is being dominated by ONE comtemporary then the case for Sampras is blown to a thousand pieces by his career long failure to even make one French open final, let alone win one, and loosing early, by round 3, in several French Opens to low seeded and unseeded players is a bigger more tender and vulnerable achilles heel.

RiosTheGenius
05-22-2006, 10:34 AM
Hmmm, I wonder how Laver is being left out of this discussion?:rolleyes:
well, there is many people out there who seem to think that tennis started in the 90s. .

Kevin T
05-22-2006, 11:46 AM
AAAA, at this point in time, Fed hasn't gotten any further at RG than Pete. All is takes is 5 minutes of research on www.atptennis.com to find Pete's record against the clay court giants of his day.
9-2 against Muster, including a win at RG in their lone clay match
1-1 on clay against Bruguera at RG
3-1 against Moya, all on hard, including that "slow" Aussie Open court
2-2 on clay against Kafelnikov (11-2 overall)
1-1 on clay against Courier, with Pete notching a win at RG (16-4 overall)
2-3 against Agassi on clay (20-14 overall, 5-1 in Slams)
5-0 against Albert Costa, including a win at RG
2-1 against Kuerten, no clay matches
With the exception of Bruguera, Sampras dominated the above on faster courts. His record against Agassi is less than dominant, but when it mattered, Pete turned it on.
Fed will work out the Nadal puzzle when he wins a match on clay.

Chadwixx
05-22-2006, 01:38 PM
I wonder whats harder, pete's serve, or his fans heads :)

Kevin T
05-22-2006, 02:07 PM
Once again (see numerous threads involving Rabbit, Dedans, etc.), Chady Boy, you won't let good old facts and stats get in the way of your viewpoint. It's like speaking English to a Martian.

!Tym
05-22-2006, 02:15 PM
AAAA, at this point in time, Fed hasn't gotten any further at RG than Pete. All is takes is 5 minutes of research on www.atptennis.com (http://www.atptennis.com) to find Pete's record against the clay court giants of his day.
9-2 against Muster, including a win at RG in their lone clay match
1-1 on clay against Bruguera at RG
3-1 against Moya, all on hard, including that "slow" Aussie Open court
2-2 on clay against Kafelnikov (11-2 overall)
1-1 on clay against Courier, with Pete notching a win at RG (16-4 overall)
2-3 against Agassi on clay (20-14 overall, 5-1 in Slams)
5-0 against Albert Costa, including a win at RG
2-1 against Kuerten, no clay matches
With the exception of Bruguera, Sampras dominated the above on faster courts. His record against Agassi is less than dominant, but when it mattered, Pete turned it on.
Fed will work out the Nadal puzzle when he wins a match on clay.

I agree, but this is the fan in me speaking.

Actually, Bruguera called the loss to Sampras the most frustrating of his career because he blew so many break chances. He dropped into the 80s that year in the rankings, was injured, and not in good shape at all for that match against Sampras, plus the courts played unusually quickly that year...and yet, still, Sampras barely won that match.

I think under more normal conditions, Bruguera would have taken that match at RG.

But other than that, the reason Sampras had good success against a guy like Muster was that Muster like many clay courters were relatively weak returners against big servers. Bruguera was the only one of the clay court guys mentioned, aside from Kafelnikov, who I consider more of an all-courter who didn't really have enough of any one great attribute or style to dominate on anyone surface, but instead be very, very good on every surface, and thus if the top dog or whoever on that surface wasn't at his best, he could win the tournie; but if the top dog was at his best, he probably wouldn't.

Anyway, other than Kafelnikov, of all those guys, only Bruguera hugged the baseline to return Sampras' serves. Unlike say Muster or Costa or Kuerten, he didn't stand way back to take the full swing on the backhand. Bruguera's backhand return was one of the best, and he could take it off the rise on this side very well on the return. His problem was on the forehand side. Against other baseliners, he'd typically stand far back to return like all the other clay courters with huge looping swings do. However, against a big server or net rusher, he'd change strategies and stand very close, taking his chances with his chip forehand return. This was a decent trade-off, because against net rushers, he could chip it low at their feet, or use their pace against them by simply blocking it back deep the way Federer does, plus you have to factor in the importance of cutting off a big servers angles. Muster would stand so far back to return against big servers to get his normal cut in, yet even if he did get the full cut in, against a net rusher and/or big server who was on, he could get himself in big trouble anyway, virtually conceding the point, because though he may have been able to get good pace and spin back on the return by getting his full cut in, he'd also be swung out so wide and so deep that he'd have no chance to recover for the ensuing volley.

So in Bruguera's case, he could get by with trading off his "big" spinny forehand, for a dinky chip against the bigger servers/net rushers; his strong backhand return not being affected by this. Yet, against an aggressive baseliner who was "on," he could get in trouble by chipping it back. It's I think actually a far more effective type of return against big servers or net rushers, and it's under utilized in my opinion; which I don't get since it's something virtually anyone can pick-up, the technique being as exceedingly simple as it is.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-22-2006, 02:16 PM
Roger has a great record against all the clay courters in the game today minus Nadal, and Kuerten, however all his matches with Kuerten except one were before his first slam title, and his only match with Kuerten since was on clay and a fluky win for Kuerten.

Chadwixx
05-22-2006, 02:30 PM
Once again (see numerous threads involving Rabbit, Dedans, etc.), Chady Boy, you won't let good old facts and stats get in the way of your viewpoint. It's like speaking English to a Martian.

Im just saying you completely missed the point me and grimjack stated. As proven by your follow up post.

The tennis guy
05-22-2006, 02:32 PM
AAAA, at this point in time, Fed hasn't gotten any further at RG than Pete. All is takes is 5 minutes of research on www.atptennis.com to find Pete's record against the clay court giants of his day.
9-2 against Muster, including a win at RG in their lone clay match
1-1 on clay against Bruguera at RG
3-1 against Moya, all on hard, including that "slow" Aussie Open court
2-2 on clay against Kafelnikov (11-2 overall)
1-1 on clay against Courier, with Pete notching a win at RG (16-4 overall)
2-3 against Agassi on clay (20-14 overall, 5-1 in Slams)
5-0 against Albert Costa, including a win at RG
2-1 against Kuerten, no clay matches
With the exception of Bruguera, Sampras dominated the above on faster courts. His record against Agassi is less than dominant, but when it mattered, Pete turned it on.
Fed will work out the Nadal puzzle when he wins a match on clay.

Federer hasn't played Nadal on any fast court. By the way, of all players you listed that Sampras beat on clay, do you think any one of them is as good as Nadal on clay? Nadal is even with all time clay court winning streak.

You can say anything about Sampras on other surfaces, but his clay court record wasn't that good. He wasn't able to win consistently on clay as Federer right now.

I haven't heard any serious person saying Federer is the greatest player of all time at this point.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-22-2006, 02:40 PM
Federer hasn't played Nadal on any fast court. By the way, of all players you listed that Sampras beat on clay, do you think any one of them is as good as Nadal on clay? Nadal is even with all time clay court winning streak.

You can say anything about Sampras on other surfaces, but his clay court record wasn't that good. He wasn't able to win consistently on clay as Federer right now.

I haven't heard any serious person saying Federer is the greatest player of all time at this point.

Just curious, which of the hard court events of the year do you consider "medium-faster hard courts" and which do you consider "slower-medium hard courts"? I know the obvious ones, like the Australian Open being a slower hard court, as well as all the pre-Australian hard court events; and the U.S Open is a very fast hard court, but it seems like all the other hard court events are being referred to by people as "slow hard court" events these days.

I think only Muster, Ferrero, or Kuerten might, and maybe that is being generous, come close to Nadal ability-wise on clay of players in the last 15 years. Sampras only played Muster twice on clay, not enough to come up with much basis on, never played Kuerten or Ferrero on it either. Nadal is far ahead of any of the others players on that list on clay, and in general(except for Agassi on non-clay surfaces of course).

Kevin T
05-22-2006, 02:53 PM
What point would that be, Chadwixx? The tour is deeper than ever these days but it's deep with mediocrity. Top to bottom, it's better but the cream of today is not equal to the cream of Pete's time, as mentioned in the beginning of this thread.

And this whole fast hard court, slow hard court business is bologna. Certain courts play faster than others but a hard court of any speed/composition is far different than a clay, carpet or grass court.

Tennis Guy,

At this point in Nadal's career (he may develop into a world-beater, who knows), I would take Courier and Agassi over Nadal in a RG final. AA and Jim could handle that high spinner to the backhand. In their prime(s), both were just as and likely more fit than Nadal, could impose their will as easily as Nadal and had bigger serves.

Excellent points, as always, !Tym.

Chadwixx
05-22-2006, 03:00 PM
I would take Courier and Agassi over Nadal in a RG final.

Thats just insanity (the agassi part). Betting on agassi in a gs final is just plain silly. Unless the guy he is playing is a journeyman, as in 7 of his 8 gs titles.

Vs weak competition (Wins)

Year Championship Opponent in Final Score in Final
1992 Wimbledon Goran Ivanišević 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 1-6, 6-4
1994 US Open Michael Stich 6-1, 7-6, 7-5
1995 Australian Open Pete Sampras 4-6, 6-1, 7-6, 6-4
1999 French Open Andrei Medvedev 1-6, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4
1999 US Open Todd Martin 6-4, 6-7, 6-7, 6-3, 6-2
2000 Australian Open Yevgeny Kafelnikov 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4
2001 Australian Open Arnaud Clement 6-4, 6-2, 6-2
2003 Australian Open Rainer Schuettler 6-2, 6-2, 6-1

Vs strong competition (Losses)(except the first french where he choked)

1990 French Open Andres Gomez 6-3, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4
1990 US Open Pete Sampras 6-4, 6-3, 6-2
1991 French Open Jim Courier 3-6, 6-4, 2-6, 6-1, 6-4
1995 US Open Pete Sampras 6-4, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5
1999 Wimbledon Pete Sampras 6-3, 6-4, 7-5
2002 US Open Pete Sampras 6-3, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
2005 US Open Roger Federer 6-3, 2-6, 7-6, 6-1

federerhoogenbandfan
05-22-2006, 03:03 PM
At this point in Nadal's career (he may develop into a world-beater, who knows), I would take Courier and Agassi over Nadal in a RG final. AA and Jim could handle that high spinner to the backhand. In their prime(s), both were just as and likely more fit than Nadal, could impose their will as easily as Nadal and had bigger serves.

My sister and I who were both on the computer reading this at the same time could not stop laughing when we read this. It took a few drinks to curb the laughter after about 5 minutes. Especialy when we realized somebody actually was serious in saying this. :mrgreen:

Rabbit
05-22-2006, 11:11 PM
You and your sister do a lot of drinking together do you?

superman1
05-22-2006, 11:37 PM
I think you laughed a bit too much. It's certainly not laughable to think that one of the greatest players of all time (Agassi) in his prime could beat Nadal on clay.

I do disagree that they were more fit than Nadal - Nadal is one of the best athletes in tennis history - but they were better players. Maybe in 10 years Nadal will be considered a better player than Courier, but I highly doubt he'll ever be considered better than Agassi.

Rabbit
05-23-2006, 09:42 AM
There has been much speculation about Sampras and his ability or lack thereof on clay. He would have been dominated... For the record, here is what Sampras did on clay and how well his conqueror went on to do in that tournament.

1989
Rome Lost to Agassi, Agassi on to finals
Roland Garros - lost to Chang, Chang went on to win

1990
Munich - Lost to Svensson who went on to SF

1991
Hamburg lost to Novacek who was eventual winner
Rome lost to Santoro who lost in QF to Bruguera
Roland Garros lost to Champion who lost in next round

1992
Nice lost in semis to eventual winner Markus
Monte Carlo - lost to Steeb who went on to QF
Atlanta Finals lost to Agassi
Rome, lost to Korda in QF, Korda lost in S
Roland Garros lost in QF to Agassi who lost in SF

1993
Atlanta lost in semis to Eltingh who won it
Rome, lost to Goran Ivanisevic in semis, Goran lost to Courier in finals
World Team Cup, won over Stich
Roland Garros - lost in QF to Bruguera who won it

1994
Rome - won over Becker
World Team Cup lost to Stich in finals
Roland Garros lost in QF to Courier who lost in SF to champion

1995
Davis Cup away at Italy, 2 - 0, won both matches
Barcelona lost R32 to Gross who lost next round
Monte Carlo lost R32 to Haarhuis who lost in next round
Hamburg, lost in SF to Medvedev who won it
Rome, lost in R64 to Santoro who lost in R16
Roland Garros - lost in R64 to Shaller
Davis Cup - 2 - 0 wins over Chesnekov/Kafelnikov on clay

1996
World Team Cup - lost to Kafelnikov
Roland Garros - SF loss to Kafelnikov who went on to win

1997
Monte Carlo - R64 Larsson who lost in QF
Rome - R64 to Courier who lost in QF
World Team Cup - lost to Scud
Roland Garros - R32 lost to Larsson who lost in QF

1998
Monte Carlo - R64 defeated Agassi then lost to Santoro who went on to QF
Atlanta - won over Stoltenberg
Rome - R16 to Chang who lost in QF
Roland Garros - R64 to Delgado who lost in R16

1999
Rome R32 to Meligeni who lost in next round
World Team Cup lost to Rafter
Roland Garros - R64 Medvedev who went on to Finals

2000
Hamburg R32 to Di Pasquale who lost in next round
WTC 0 - 3
Roalnd Garros lost to Scud who lost in R16

2001
Rome - lost in R64 to Levy who went on to QF
Hamburg - R64
WTC - 2 - 1
Roland Garros - R64 to Blanco who went on to R16

2002
Houston lost finals to Roddick
Hamburg made it to SF
WTC - 1 - 2
Roalnd Garros lost R128 to Gaudenzi who went on to R32

What we can tell is that Sampras played a minimal clay court season. We can also see that the majority of the time, the guy who beat him went on to lose in the later rounds, if not the final. While Sampras clearly wasn't dominant on clay like he was on grass and hard, his record is still more than respectable.

I don't know, but this doesn't look bad for a guy who allegedly sucked on clay.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 10:06 AM
The tour is deeper than ever these days but it's deep with mediocrity. Top to bottom, it's better but the cream of today is not equal to the cream of Pete's time, as mentioned in the beginning of this thread.


I don't think that's entirely true. Check out this thread:

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=100771

I did the research from atptennis, there were a ton of upsets from round 1 on throughout slams the entire 90s. I just limited the list to top 200 players that beat seeds. I tried to do top 100 as well, but got tired. I was a huge list.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 10:15 AM
I do disagree that they were more fit than Nadal - Nadal is one of the best athletes in tennis history - but they were better players.

I think there's a difference between being very athletic & being very fit. Sure Nadal is fit, but compared to Lendl, Muster, Courier? Their training regimens are well documented, they were insane. Courier went for long runs after 5 setters. Remember those Nike commercials with him working out(running, while dragging a tire behind him)
Some fitness mag in the 90s ranked him among the fittest athletes in the world.

For sure nadal is a more a talented tennis player, but he is not fitter. He has talked about his workouts, he really isn't doing anything crazy, doesn't so much weight training. He is just a kid, really. I'm sure he'll get more serious about his fitness as he gets older(hopefully not too serious. Muster & Courier trained too much & burned out)

Rabbit
05-23-2006, 10:21 AM
I agree with Moose. Nadal is kinda like Noah. I remember Mary Carillo calling Yannick Noah the most "out of shape in-shape guy on the tour". That's not to say that Nadal is out of shape by any means, but he did tire against Federer in the Miami final. I understand his fitness has improved, but to rank him with Courier is a stretch IMO.

Also, Lendl compared his day to today's players. One very valid point he made was that matches, especially those on clay, were much longer and required more of a marathoner type athleticism.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 10:26 AM
My sister and I who were both on the computer reading this at the same time could not stop laughing when we read this. It took a few drinks to curb the laughter after about 5 minutes. Especialy when we realized somebody actually was serious in saying this.

Do you realize how good Courier was on clay? He thoroughly dominated the '92 French beating many claycourt specialists that stand way back like Nadal. He was a huge favorite to 3 peat in '93. He didn't play as much on clay as the Europeans, but I think Courier at his best on clay would be a formidable opponent for anyone.

Check out the guys he beat & the scores. Compare to Nadal's victories:

1992 Rome
64 W Thomas MUSTER (AUT) 7-6 6-4
32 W Francisco CLAVET (ESP) 6-2 6-2
16 W Sergio BRUGUERA (ESP) 6-3 6-2
QF W Cristian MINIUSSI (ARG) 4-6 6-4 6-1
SF W Carl-Uwe STEEB (GER) 5-7 6-1 6-2
FR W Carlos COSTA (ESP) 7-6 6-0 6-4

1992 Roland Garros
128 W Niclas KROON (SWE) 7-6 6-4 6-2
64 W Thomas MUSTER (AUT) 6-1 6-4 6-4
32 W Alberto MANCINI (ARG) 6-4 6-2 6-0
16 W Andrei MEDVEDEV (UKR) 6-1 6-4 6-2
QF W Goran IVANISEVIC (YUG) 6-2 6-1 2-6 7-5
SF W Andre AGASSI (USA) 6-3 6-2 6-2
FR W Petr KORDA (TCH) 7-5 6-2 6-1

1993 Rome
64 W Horacio DE LA PENA (ARG) 6-2 6-1
32 W Paul HAARHUIS (NED) 6-3 2-6 6-0
16 W Fabrice SANTORO (FRA) 6-3 6-3
QF W Sergio BRUGUERA (ESP) 6-3 6-4
SF W Michael CHANG (USA) 6-2 6-7 6-0
FR W Goran IVANISEVIC (CRO) 6-1 6-2 6-2

Nadal's FO Run:
128 W Lars BURGSMULLER (GER) 6-1 7-6(4) 6-1
64 W Xavier MALISSE (BEL) 6-2 6-2 6-4
32 W Richard GASQUET (FRA) 6-4 6-3 6-2
16 W Sebastien GROSJEAN (FRA) 6-4 3-6 6-0 6-3
QF W David FERRER (ESP) 7-5 6-2 6-0
SF W Roger FEDERER (SUI) 6-3 4-6 6-4 6-3
FR W Mariano PUERTA (ARG) 6-7(6) 6-3 6-1 7-5

Not quite as dominating, huh? And not as many great clay players compared to Courier's list.
He destroyed Muster, Mancini, Medvedev back to back at the '92 French! Unreal. It was like the twilight zone, a time wheh an American was the greatest dirtballer on the planet.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 10:32 AM
Just curious, which of the hard court events of the year do you consider "medium-faster hard courts" and which do you consider "slower-medium hard courts"? I know the obvious ones, like the Australian Open being a slower hard court, as well as all the pre-Australian hard court events; and the U.S Open is a very fast hard court, but it seems like all the other hard court events are being referred to by people as "slow hard court" events these days.


Currently, almost all outdoor hardcourts first half of the year are slow to medium by design from ATP, outdoor hardcourts second half of the year are medium to fast.

Australia Open used to be medium fast soft hardcourt. No idea why they slowed them down recently detrimental to their own players. Paul M. has resigned over this, hopefully they speed the courts back to 90s and early 2000s speed.

Chadwixx
05-23-2006, 10:32 AM
He can play 5 set tiebreakers consistently that go over 5hrs but these guys say his fitness is questionable, k.

urban
05-23-2006, 10:38 AM
Couriers 1992 Roland Garros was imo the best major tournament performance of the whole 90s. He went through the strong field like a tank, the only problem was Ivanisevic in the quarters, who was going hot with his serve for a set and a half.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 10:44 AM
Tennis Guy,

At this point in Nadal's career (he may develop into a world-beater, who knows), I would take Courier and Agassi over Nadal in a RG final. AA and Jim could handle that high spinner to the backhand. In their prime(s), both were just as and likely more fit than Nadal, could impose their will as easily as Nadal and had bigger serves.



You can take whoever you like. It's your preference. I have doubt about Nadal on other surfaces. However, on clay, he is super tough. He is much tougher than Sergi Brugura. If Courier couldn't beat SB at RG final, he certainly isn't a favorite against Nadal to me. If Agassi couldn't beat Andre Gomez at RG final, he certainly isn't a favorite against Nadal on clay either. To win 53 straight is insane.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 10:46 AM
Couriers 1992 Roland Garros was imo the best major tournament performance of the whole 90s. He went through the strong field like a tank, the only problem was Ivanisevic in the quarters, who was going hot with his serve for a set and a half.

I think you may be right. I always hated watching Courier, but that '92 run was remarkable. All these great claycourters were so intimidated by someone who was beating them by basically playing hardcourt tennis on a claycourt.

Its a shame he lost that set to Goran. No one has won a slam without losing a set since Borg in '80 French.

!Tym
05-23-2006, 10:52 AM
I don't think that's entirely true. Check out this thread:

http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=100771

I did the research from atptennis, there were a ton of upsets from round 1 on throughout slams the entire 90s. I just limited the list to top 200 players that beat seeds. I tried to do top 100 as well, but got tired. I was a huge list.

This part's true. It's perception more than anything else in my opinion. It's not like wrestling in the early 90s where they had tons of jobbers around to lay down for the names. Tennis throughout the 90s has been incredibly deep, and it continues to this day. It's nothing new.

I mean in the 97 French, the ONLY seed left in the draw by the time the quarterfinals rolled around was Bruguera, and he was seeded dead last, 15 or 16.

Think about that 15 out of the 16 seeds were eliminated for the second week! If that doesn't show depth, I don't know what does.

It was a crapshoot even then. If a no name had a great day, he could definitely take out a top name back then. It's nothing new at all.

I will agree, however, that the top players from those days were slightly better than now overall. I think what's lacking today are top players who play without fear or reverence. Even in Sampras' day, guys like Courier, Bruguera, Chang, and Stich, and Edberg, and Krajicek, etc. weren't going to lie down for him. They respected him greatly, of course, but they also weren't going to pull a Gaudio and just roll over for the guy. They also wouldn't pull a Coria and double fault like crazy or choke a grand slam final that was practically gift-wrapped for you and put on a silver platter for you. To me, the reason Federer and Nadal walk over so many players these days is that the lack of belief. You have to be willing to step up to these guys like men. They're not going to just give it to you. A great example is Alberto Costa not being afraid to "man up" to Thomas Muster. Yes, Muster at his best was definitely a better player, but it's not like you can't challenge if him if he's a little off, that's IF you're a MAN and willing to stand up to him like a man and stare him in the eyes. To me, this is why Nalbandian was able to beat Federer at the Masters Cup last year. He's not afraid of Federer, respects him sure, knows he's a better player than him in the big scheme of things, sure; but still doesn't mean he's going to lie-down for the guy. That's half the battle right there.

What I mean by this is Tommy Robredo vs. Nadal recently. Nadal's of course better, but Robredo's no slouch either; yet Robredo you could sense right from the beginning fear, and a lack of self-belief. Costa and Robredo actually play very similarly, and I remember them duking it out for a classic five-setter at Roland Garros the year Costa won, and though Robredo probably was playing a little better on the day, Costa broke him mentally by the time the fifth came around. Quite simply, he was more of a MAN than Robredo. Costa didn't show defference. When he played Sampras for the first time at the Australian Open quarters, he took it to Sampras as best he could. Yeah, he lost a tight five-setter, but he wasn't afraid either.

And the thing is, Costa wasn't even an elite player ever, always just on the cusp of the upper echelon, but never quite there. Yet, he still had more of that fearlessness you need. Today's players quite simply pay too much reverence and need to stand up like men to the elite.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 10:54 AM
You can take whoever you like. It's your preference. I have doubt about Nadal on other surfaces. However, on clay, he is super tough. He is much tougher than Sergi Brugura. If Courier couldn't beat SB at RG final, he certainly isn't a favorite against Nadal to me.

Did you see the list that I posted of who Courier beat (& the scores) from '92/'93?
That was more impressive than Nadal's run last year. Courier beat Bruguera on clay in '92 & '93. He wasn't at his best during the '93 French but still came close to winning it. I wouldn't read too much into Courier losing that final to Bruguera, when you look at his run the year before & at Rome that year. It has no bearing on how someone would match up with someone else at their peak, since '93 French wasn't Courier's best tennis. A peak Courier has played some of the best claycourt tennis of alltime.

Ultra2HolyGrail
05-23-2006, 10:59 AM
Nadal shouldnt even be mentioned along the likes of Fed, sampras, agassi.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 11:04 AM
A peak Courier has played some of the best claycourt tennis of alltime.

I agree. Nadal is even with all time winning streak on clay. So I don't know how you can jump to say Courier is favorite against Nadal right now. Remember, I didn't say Nadal is the favorite against Courier either.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 11:06 AM
Nadal shouldnt even be mentioned along the likes of Fed, sampras, agassi.

Even if Nadal stops playing right now, he is greater than Fed, Sampras on clay, and equivalent to Agassi on clay.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 11:17 AM
That's not to say that Nadal is out of shape by any means, but he did tire against Federer in the Miami final.

Nadal is a clay courter. He doesn't tire on clay. However, he tires on other surfaces just like other clay courters because he is not used to the pounding on hardcourt. It has nothing to do with fitness.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 12:15 PM
So I don't know how you can jump to say Courier is favorite against Nadal right now. Remember, I didn't say Nadal is the favorite against Courier either.

And I didn't say Courier would be favored against Nadal either. I would put it at even money. Would be fun to watch that one.

!Tym,
great post. I always thought, in all sports, who wins & who loses has always been as much about your guts as your ability. I agree, most guys look scared vs Fed or Nadal. I'm not sure why, it is a great opportunity. They are pros, so theoretically they should be able to compete to their best ability. I think the media coverage of Fed & this best of all time talk among the media has really freaked out a lot of these guys. They seem to have developed a complex.

This part's true. It's perception more than anything else in my opinion. It's not like wrestling in the early 90s where they had tons of jobbers around to lay down for the names. Tennis throughout the 90s has been incredibly deep, and it continues to this day. It's nothing new.


Just came across one of your favorites going through these draws-
Bryan Shelton beat Stich 1st Round in '94 Wimbledon & Krajicek 1st round '95 Wimbledon. He was ranked out of the top 100 both years.

Hal
05-23-2006, 12:17 PM
5-1 isnt domination.

ROTFLMAO! This coming from a guy that uses a 1 match series (tough 5 setter) as his main argument for claiming that Fed is better than Sampras.;)


Greatest acheivements goes to sampras until someone can pass his records (which arent that great when you look at his draws, then again americans always seem to get favorable ones at the us open). The better player though is fed, as your own eyes can see, as agassi and moya have told you, and proven by their head to head record.
How do you justify your 5-1 isn't domination argument when you claim that Fed proved that he's a better player than Samprass by winning a tough 5 setter over an aging Samprass? Chadwixx, you really need to be consistent with your arguments.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-23-2006, 02:11 PM
Do you realize how good Courier was on clay? He thoroughly dominated the '92 French beating many claycourt specialists that stand way back like Nadal. He was a huge favorite to 3 peat in '93. He didn't play as much on clay as the Europeans, but I think Courier at his best on clay would be a formidable opponent for anyone.

Check out the guys he beat & the scores. Compare to Nadal's victories:

1992 Rome
64 W Thomas MUSTER (AUT) 7-6 6-4
32 W Francisco CLAVET (ESP) 6-2 6-2
16 W Sergio BRUGUERA (ESP) 6-3 6-2
QF W Cristian MINIUSSI (ARG) 4-6 6-4 6-1
SF W Carl-Uwe STEEB (GER) 5-7 6-1 6-2
FR W Carlos COSTA (ESP) 7-6 6-0 6-4

1992 Roland Garros
128 W Niclas KROON (SWE) 7-6 6-4 6-2
64 W Thomas MUSTER (AUT) 6-1 6-4 6-4
32 W Alberto MANCINI (ARG) 6-4 6-2 6-0
16 W Andrei MEDVEDEV (UKR) 6-1 6-4 6-2
QF W Goran IVANISEVIC (YUG) 6-2 6-1 2-6 7-5
SF W Andre AGASSI (USA) 6-3 6-2 6-2
FR W Petr KORDA (TCH) 7-5 6-2 6-1

1993 Rome
64 W Horacio DE LA PENA (ARG) 6-2 6-1
32 W Paul HAARHUIS (NED) 6-3 2-6 6-0
16 W Fabrice SANTORO (FRA) 6-3 6-3
QF W Sergio BRUGUERA (ESP) 6-3 6-4
SF W Michael CHANG (USA) 6-2 6-7 6-0
FR W Goran IVANISEVIC (CRO) 6-1 6-2 6-2

Nadal's FO Run:
128 W Lars BURGSMULLER (GER) 6-1 7-6(4) 6-1
64 W Xavier MALISSE (BEL) 6-2 6-2 6-4
32 W Richard GASQUET (FRA) 6-4 6-3 6-2
16 W Sebastien GROSJEAN (FRA) 6-4 3-6 6-0 6-3
QF W David FERRER (ESP) 7-5 6-2 6-0
SF W Roger FEDERER (SUI) 6-3 4-6 6-4 6-3
FR W Mariano PUERTA (ARG) 6-7(6) 6-3 6-1 7-5

Not quite as dominating, huh? And not as many great clay players compared to Courier's list.
He destroyed Muster, Mancini, Medvedev back to back at the '92 French! Unreal. It was like the twilight zone, a time wheh an American was the greatest dirtballer on the planet.

I have seen Courier play on clay in 91 and 92 yes, and I would have no problem taking Nadal over Courier anytime in a big match. Yes Courier was good on clay, but he has no 50+ match win streak on the surface, not even close.

As for the 92 draw, the fact Muster was unseeded at all(ranked outside the top 16, despite all the clay court events he plays to gain points) shows he is miles from the Muster of 95-96 at that point, Medvedev was a contender on clay back then yet was beatable enough to also be beaten in straight sets Bruguera in both 93 and 94, so in 3 straight years could not even win a single set from the eventual Champion which only once was Courier, Courier owned Agassi on all surfaces after the 91 French for a few years so had a huge mental edge, and Korda is not even really a clay courter and was a huge shock to be in the finals at all of the French.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-23-2006, 02:21 PM
Did you see the list that I posted of who Courier beat (& the scores) from '92/'93?
That was more impressive than Nadal's run last year. Courier beat Bruguera on clay in '92 & '93. He wasn't at his best during the '93 French but still came close to winning it. I wouldn't read too much into Courier losing that final to Bruguera, when you look at his run the year before & at Rome that year. It has no bearing on how someone would match up with someone else at their peak, since '93 French wasn't Courier's best tennis. A peak Courier has played some of the best claycourt tennis of alltime.

So are you saying Courier's peak lasted only one year? The only argument one could even try to make about Courier's peak tennis on clay being more unbeatable then Nadal's is by discounting both 91 and 93, looking at only 92, and discounting the Olympics to boot, and narrowing it down to dominance in one year in a very limited schedule on clay excluding the Olympics. Hey if that is good enough for you though....

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 02:33 PM
I have seen Courier play on clay in 91 and 92 yes, and I would have no problem taking Nadal over Courier anytime in a big match. Yes Courier was good on clay, but he has no 50+ match win streak on the surface, not even close.


Its impressive that Nadal has this streak, but I think it has no bearing on this hypotherical matchup. Courier only played one clay event before '92 & '93 French & was still the heavy favorite both years, despite claycourt specialists having far more overall wins on the surface those years.
And streaks really have nothing to do with matchups. Muster was as big a favorite as anyone in tourney history in '96, yet still lost to Stich(who I don't think played any matches on clay prior to the French this year)

As for the 92 draw, the fact Muster was unseeded at all(ranked outside the top 16, despite all the clay court events he plays to gain points) shows he is miles from the Muster of 95-96 at that point, Medvedev was a contender on clay back then yet was beatable enough to also be beaten in straight sets Bruguera in both 93 and 94, so in 3 straight years could not even win a single set from the eventual Champion which only once was Courier, Courier owned Agassi on all surfaces after the 91 French for a few years so had a huge mental edge, and Korda is not even really a clay courter and was a huge shock to be in the finals at all of the French.

Muster just missed being seeded in '92. He may not have yet reached his peak, but he was still a great claycourter, having won so many events on clay at that point in his career including the Italian Open in '90. Courier also beat Muster at the '93 French, a year in which Muster, I think, won 8 clay events. Courier is probably the reason Muster became so great in '95. He realized Courier was much stronger than him & started to hit the weights seriously in order to transform himself into a more offensive claycourt player.
Regardless of Muster's gaudy overall claycourt record, I think the Courier of '92 would beat the Muster of '95 on clay. He just had more weapons & was equally fit.

Medvedev was the breakout player of '92. He was a very dangerous, hyped young player. Look how he built on that year in '93, becoming one of the youngest top 5 players of the 90s. And he ended up being one of the best claycourters of the decade.

And Agassi was still considered one of the best claycourters in the world in '92. That match was highly anticipated, considering their final the year before. Courier destroying him was a total shock. Courier destroying everyone that year was amazing, they were very good players.
And don't forget Mancini as well, a former Italian Open champ.

I still find Courier's romp to the '92 title more impressive than Nadal's last year. More dominating, better opposition overall. Nadal lost sets to Puerta & Grosjean last year, not exactly among the best claycourters of recent years. Courier would be more than a match for Nadal. He had no trouble with "lefty spin" or high balls to his backhand like some others do, apparently.

Like urban said, there may not have been a more dominating performance at any slam in the 90s, like Courier at '92 French.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-23-2006, 02:34 PM
Currently, almost all outdoor hardcourts first half of the year are slow to medium by design from ATP, outdoor hardcourts second half of the year are medium to fast.

Australia Open used to be medium fast soft hardcourt. No idea why they slowed them down recently detrimental to their own players. Paul M. has resigned over this, hopefully they speed the courts back to 90s and early 2000s speed.

Thanks. In that case Nadal has won a Masters title(Canada last year)on faster hard courts, although he did not beat Roger to do it; and won Madrid on what would almost certainly be a faster surface being indoors.

So even if he hasnt played Roger on a faster hard court he has proven his merits on it.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 02:41 PM
So are you saying Courier's peak lasted only one year? The only argument one could even try to make about Courier's peak tennis on clay being more unbeatable then Nadal's is by discounting both 91 and 93, looking at only 92, and discounting the Olympics to boot, and narrowing it down to dominance in one year in a very limited schedule on clay excluding the Olympics. Hey if that is good enough for you though....

Let me ask you, have you ever seen a more dominating performance through 7 matches at the French like Courier in '92? Also considering that 6 of those players were pretty darn good, including some great claycourt specialists of the time.

Yes Courier had a very short peak, but a very impressive one. Not sure how you could think otherwise with those scores & names I listed(including 2 routine Rome victories '92/'92) He looked unbeatable during Rome '93, but played very flat during the entire '93 French. Still almost won it.

Not sure why you would mention the Olympics since you start threads about how meaningless it is every few months.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 02:46 PM
Thanks. In that case Nadal has won a Masters title(Canada last year)on faster hard courts, although he did not beat Roger to do it; and won Madrid on what would almost certainly be a faster surface being indoors.

So even if he hasnt played Roger on a faster hard court he has proven his merits on it.

Nadal can really play on fast hardcourt with high bounce, no question about it. Both Montreal and Madrid were high bouncing court, but "accidentally" he didn't do that well on other two lower bouncing fast courts Cincinatti, and US Open which is fastest and lowest bouncing outdoor hardcourt.

federerhoogenbandfan
05-23-2006, 02:50 PM
Let me ask you, have you ever seen a more dominating performance through 7 matches at the French like Courier in '92? Also considering that 6 of those players were pretty darn good, including some great claycourt specialists of the time.

Yes Courier had a very short peak, but a very impressive one. Not sure how you could think otherwise with those scores & names I listed(including 2 routine Rome victories '92/'92) He looked unbeatable during Rome '93, but played very flat during the entire '93 French. Still almost won it.

Not sure why you would mention the Olympics since you start threads about how meaningless it is every few months.

Ok I agree his dominance in 92 was as much atleast as Nadal's on clay today, but he did it playing a much limited schedule, could he have done it playing a fuller schedule? Also I think a peak should last alot more than 1 year or even 1.5 years, which is all you are using. Anyway since his match with Agassi was a lopsided one, I dont see how it would do anything to show Agassi's peak on clay being up with Nadal's as Kevin T implied. Agassi certainly never had a peak on clay that would touch Nadal's, and not in a million years would I go with Agassi in a French Open final vs Nadal.

I agree the Olympics should be discounted, that is why I oked you dismissing it, but pointed it anyway just to make sure.

The tennis guy
05-23-2006, 02:55 PM
I agree with fed...fan more on the subject. There are different issues when you talk about match up. If we are talking about one match only, it is difficult to say. However, if we are talking about match after match between them, I'd take Nadal.

Moose Malloy
05-23-2006, 03:04 PM
Ok I agree his dominance in 92 was as much atleast as Nadal's on clay today, but he did it playing a much limited schedule, could he have done it playing a fuller schedule?

Yeah, but is Nadal really playing a "fuller schedule" or just taking advantage of a long claycourt season & racking up points? Looking at Courier from '91-'93 he was very good on all surfaces & went deep in most events he played(his slam record is among the more impressive I've seen over a 2 year period)
If he was capable of being the best claycourter in the world, by playing only 2 clay events, why should he play more? And remember he made the final of Wimbledon in '93, if he played every clay event like Muster or Bruguera & won the French he may have been too tired to even play it.

You know Lendl & Borg never played a ridiculous amount of claycourt events like Muster & Nadal do. I think they proved you didn't need to, & all they really cared about was the French.

Maybe one year isn't enough to determine one's peak, but some historians still talk about Jack Kramer winning the Wimbledon in a romp one year & say its among the best anyone's played. In an earlier post you mentioned players ability when comparing how they'd do vs Nadal. Regardless if it was only 1-2 years, I think Courier certainly had enough ability to give Nadal a match, so what if he wasn't 111-5 like Muster was over a 2 year period. He still won more FOs than Muster. And beat him more often on clay.

Let me ask you-Courier of '92 vs Muster of '95 in a hypothetical FO final? I say Courier, regardless of how many less clay matches he plays. And I know you think Muster is one of only a few that are in Nadal's league, ability wise.

AAAA
05-23-2006, 03:19 PM
AAAA, at this point in time, Fed hasn't gotten any further at RG than Pete. All is takes is 5 minutes of research on www.atptennis.com to find Pete's record against the clay court giants of his day.
9-2 against Muster, including a win at RG in their lone clay match
1-1 on clay against Bruguera at RG
3-1 against Moya, all on hard, including that "slow" Aussie Open court
2-2 on clay against Kafelnikov (11-2 overall)
1-1 on clay against Courier, with Pete notching a win at RG (16-4 overall)
2-3 against Agassi on clay (20-14 overall, 5-1 in Slams)
5-0 against Albert Costa, including a win at RG
2-1 against Kuerten, no clay matches
With the exception of Bruguera, Sampras dominated the above on faster courts. His record against Agassi is less than dominant, but when it mattered, Pete turned it on.
Fed will work out the Nadal puzzle when he wins a match on clay.

The above is off topic. You said Federer's failure to beat one comtemporary(Nadal) counted strongly against the case for Federer being the GOAT. To which I said Sampras's failure to win the French Open, a major, is an even bigger argument against claims to declare Sampras the GOAT.

My position on this is that failure to win the 'missing' major is a bigger negative than failure to beat one comtemporary. Your position could be vice versa but the above response doesn't make it clear.

Grigollif1
05-23-2006, 03:20 PM
The missing part of the argument is that Sampras would have been utterly dominated by...just to pick a name from the era...Gustavo Kuerten, had he consistently met him in the finals of clay tournaments.

But Pete was nowhere near good enough to get that deep in clay tournaments. Fed is.

Fed dominates the rest of the year in even more impressive fashion than Pete did, AND gets to the finals of virtually every clay court event, now. Nadal doesn't "dominate" him. The results are skewed because while Roger justifies his seed by getting to the end of every clay tourney, Nadal doesn't, by coming up short everywhere else for most of the year.

The way to dominate is not simply to dominate head-to-head. Federer can't be blamed for Nadal's inability to step up and challenge him at three of the four slams. When Nadal rolls over at those venues, Fed DOES dominate him. It shows up in the history books, and it shows up in the rankings. It simply doesn't show up in the h2h results, because Nadal isn't competitive enough to make that happen.

As it stands, Pete had a 2-1 advantage over Guga, all on hard. If he had ended his career with a 9-2 deficit against GK, including 0-7 on clay, all in semis and finals, his career would have been stronger. Despite being "dominated." As it was, he simply wasn't relevant enough on clay to amass losing records against the best claycourters.


Now, that is reason! Listen to this guy!.... ;) agreed.

!Tym
05-23-2006, 03:34 PM
You can take whoever you like. It's your preference. I have doubt about Nadal on other surfaces. However, on clay, he is super tough. He is much tougher than Sergi Brugura. If Courier couldn't beat SB at RG final, he certainly isn't a favorite against Nadal to me. If Agassi couldn't beat Andre Gomez at RG final, he certainly isn't a favorite against Nadal on clay either. To win 53 straight is insane.

Well, you can't just take individual matchups like that and draw blanket conclusions in my opinion.

One magazine article wrote of Bruguera, he only seems to give it his all at the French. A tour insider told me he was "always half-assed, sometimes motivated, sometimes not." Steinbrenner was absoultely disgusted with Bruguera's lack of effort watching him live, and this was in the Olympics in his home country too! As Courier said about Bruguera at the US Open, "just say it, the boy tanked, the boy tanked." Or as PMac said in a PC sort of way, when he's not feeling well, "Sergi Bruguera hasn't always been the best of competitors." Or as McEnroe's sidekick at the USA network said during the French, "We've seen Bruguera look lethargic in the past John." Or as Dick Enberg said, "Bruguera maybe playing a little possum." Or as Bud Collins said, "He looks like he's dying!" Or as John McEnroe said, he used to throw matches on purpose to get back at his dad when they got into arguments...which prior to 93 were numerous and stormy.

Bruguera's highest level of clay court tennis though was VERY formidable. At his best, he could hit with more pace than Courier off the ground, had softer hands at the net, was faster than Courier, could hit with so much topspin that the ball would almost skip through the court.

What he didn't have was a formidable serve like Courier, the point-in, point-out, mental toughness of Courier, or the fitness of Courier.

At his best though, to me in that one particular matchup, I'd take him over Courier on clay in a ONE match take all type thing. Look at Bruguera's performance on the seniors tour. One week he's getting bageled left and right, next he's peaking to win the Barcelona title he so wanted. That's how he was, it's typical of him. You never knew when he was going to give his all, sometimes even on big occasions.

Even the commentators knew this at the 97 Lipton against Sampras. Before the match, they said if Bruguera keeps on playing the way he's been playing this tournie, he could beat Sampras, this even though Sampras was considered invincible at the time and had his best start to the year ever.

They said in the middle of the match, "Don't be fooled by Sergi Bruguera's ranking. He's a much better player than that." And, "This is two heavy weights going at it. It's going to take their best tennis to win, and they both know it." And, "This isn't a fluke. I saw him take out both Korda and Stich in Dubai earlier this year."

And? Again, that's how Bruguera was.

He had a lot more talent than given credit for, he wasn't just a guy with speed; in fact, he wasn't even that mentally tough MATCH-IN, MATCH-OUT. However, rest assured, WHEN you got him on a day where you knew he was mentally locked in for the long haul, THEN you'd get those kind of comments like they gave at the 97 Lipton semis against Sampras. It's two different Bruguera's.

Put it this way, if Bruguera's life was on the line in a match, you'd bet on him. If he wasn't really sure if his life was on the line in a match though it was a definite possibility, then you did NOT want to bet on Bruguera.

With guys like Nadal and Muster, however, it's different. I'm not even knocking their talent. But, guys like that they ALWAYS play like their life is on the line. Doesn't matter if they're plaing in Timbucktoo for peanuts, they only know that one way to play. All out or die.

THAT is why they can go on those incredible streaks. You can't be a Marat Safin type who sometimes shows up with his hard hat, sometimes shows up not at all, and other times (most of the time) shows up only half way (like a Bruguera/Medvedev/Kafelnikov/Rios/Gaudio type mentality).

And also, let's not discount Medvedev. He beat Kuerten in straight sets at the French during his peak and when he was in the absolute dumps. See what I mean? It's all about individual matchups when you're talking about elite level talents, PLUS also mentally. A guy like Medvedev, it was the same with Bruguera, their average level of play is in no way indicative of their top level of play. Or, to borrow a quote from Cliffie at the Lipton against Sampras, "Sergi Bruguera is in full-flight, in full-flight! From one side to another, he will not be denied!" Yup, on THAT day. Next day, he threw in the towel quicker than you can stare at Pamela Anderson's...bleep?

Chadwixx
05-23-2006, 03:39 PM
Now, that is reason! Listen to this guy!.... ;) agreed.

They only see what they want to see.

Chadwixx
05-23-2006, 03:57 PM
ROTFLMAO! This coming from a guy that uses a 1 match series (tough 5 setter) as his main argument for claiming that Fed is better than Sampras.;)


How do you justify your 5-1 isn't domination argument when you claim that Fed proved that he's a better player than Samprass by winning a tough 5 setter over an aging Samprass? Chadwixx, you really need to be consistent with your arguments.

Take a prozac and try to make it to the end of my post, it explains itself. If you want a better worded version read grimjacks.

Sampras vs fed took place on wimbledons center court, sampras's favorite place to play.

superman1
05-23-2006, 08:51 PM
You have no clue about tennis if you think that one match proves everything.

Rabbit
05-24-2006, 05:42 AM
Courier made the finals of Roland Garros & Wimbledon in 93. Let's see Nadal match or better that performance and then there may be room for discussion. Courier has 2 French Opens, I'm sure Nadal will have more, but then again, everyone said Kuerten was unbeatable at RG as well; better than Borg even. He wound up with 3. Borg has 6?

Point being, the guy has to do it before it can be an accomplishment.

The tennis guy
05-24-2006, 08:15 AM
Well, you can't just take individual matchups like that and draw blanket conclusions in my opinion.

One magazine article wrote of Bruguera, he only seems to give it his all at the French. A tour insider told me he was "always half-assed, sometimes motivated, sometimes not." Steinbrenner was absoultely disgusted with Bruguera's lack of effort watching him live, and this was in the Olympics in his home country too! As Courier said about Bruguera at the US Open, "just say it, the boy tanked, the boy tanked." Or as PMac said in a PC sort of way, when he's not feeling well, "Sergi Bruguera hasn't always been the best of competitors." Or as McEnroe's sidekick at the USA network said during the French, "We've seen Bruguera look lethargic in the past John." Or as Dick Enberg said, "Bruguera maybe playing a little possum." Or as Bud Collins said, "He looks like he's dying!" Or as John McEnroe said, he used to throw matches on purpose to get back at his dad when they got into arguments...which prior to 93 were numerous and stormy.

Bruguera's highest level of clay court tennis though was VERY formidable. At his best, he could hit with more pace than Courier off the ground, had softer hands at the net, was faster than Courier, could hit with so much topspin that the ball would almost skip through the court.

What he didn't have was a formidable serve like Courier, the point-in, point-out, mental toughness of Courier, or the fitness of Courier.

At his best though, to me in that one particular matchup, I'd take him over Courier on clay in a ONE match take all type thing. Look at Bruguera's performance on the seniors tour. One week he's getting bageled left and right, next he's peaking to win the Barcelona title he so wanted. That's how he was, it's typical of him. You never knew when he was going to give his all, sometimes even on big occasions.

Even the commentators knew this at the 97 Lipton against Sampras. Before the match, they said if Bruguera keeps on playing the way he's been playing this tournie, he could beat Sampras, this even though Sampras was considered invincible at the time and had his best start to the year ever.

They said in the middle of the match, "Don't be fooled by Sergi Bruguera's ranking. He's a much better player than that." And, "This is two heavy weights going at it. It's going to take their best tennis to win, and they both know it." And, "This isn't a fluke. I saw him take out both Korda and Stich in Dubai earlier this year."

And? Again, that's how Bruguera was.

He had a lot more talent than given credit for, he wasn't just a guy with speed; in fact, he wasn't even that mentally tough MATCH-IN, MATCH-OUT. However, rest assured, WHEN you got him on a day where you knew he was mentally locked in for the long haul, THEN you'd get those kind of comments like they gave at the 97 Lipton semis against Sampras. It's two different Bruguera's.

Put it this way, if Bruguera's life was on the line in a match, you'd bet on him. If he wasn't really sure if his life was on the line in a match though it was a definite possibility, then you did NOT want to bet on Bruguera.

With guys like Nadal and Muster, however, it's different. I'm not even knocking their talent. But, guys like that they ALWAYS play like their life is on the line. Doesn't matter if they're plaing in Timbucktoo for peanuts, they only know that one way to play. All out or die.

THAT is why they can go on those incredible streaks. You can't be a Marat Safin type who sometimes shows up with his hard hat, sometimes shows up not at all, and other times (most of the time) shows up only half way (like a Bruguera/Medvedev/Kafelnikov/Rios/Gaudio type mentality).

And also, let's not discount Medvedev. He beat Kuerten in straight sets at the French during his peak and when he was in the absolute dumps. See what I mean? It's all about individual matchups when you're talking about elite level talents, PLUS also mentally. A guy like Medvedev, it was the same with Bruguera, their average level of play is in no way indicative of their top level of play. Or, to borrow a quote from Cliffie at the Lipton against Sampras, "Sergi Bruguera is in full-flight, in full-flight! From one side to another, he will not be denied!" Yup, on THAT day. Next day, he threw in the towel quicker than you can stare at Pamela Anderson's...bleep?

So what is your point? It seems you just confirmed to me Bruguera wasn't tough enough. If a guy rarely gets to his best, then your point of when this guy is at his best is pointless. What separates great players from the rest are consistency, consistently at high level of play.

Kevin T
05-24-2006, 10:18 AM
Man, wish I hadn't been so busy the last 2 days. Rabbit and Moose have basically said all I needed to say.

Courier actually came very close to the career Grand Slam. Closer than Pete ever did. He was no match for Pete on grass in the Wimby final, though he played pretty well, but had a legitimate shot to win the US Open. Courier was the man to beat for a couple of years. And you would be hard-pressed to find a fitter athlete in modern tennis history. He's right up there with Lendl, Borg, etc.

Nadal is an all-time great clay courter but I would still take Courier in a French final, in his prime with all other things being equal. Since this whole discussion is hypothetical, let's have Courier being born in the 80's vs. the 70's, learning the game with a Babolat Pure Drive instead of wood and the 85in Pro Staff. Conversely, put Nadal back a few years. He would never have developed his game because the wood wouldn't have allowed it. He may have been a serve and volleyer from the early days. I would also bet the house that if Pete Sampras, big game player that he was, made it to a French final, he would have rocked the house.

There's a big difference between a winner and a champion. Ask Charles Barkley, the Indianapolis Colts, the Buffalo Bills, Greg Norman. Big-game players/teams play big when it counts.

The tennis guy
05-24-2006, 11:05 AM
I would also bet the house that if Pete Sampras, big game player that he was, made it to a French final, he would have rocked the house.


You would lose your house. So a French open semifinal was not a big game for Sampras when he lost? Sampras also lost 3 US Open finals because they were not big game?

Conversely, put Nadal back a few years. He would never have developed his game because the wood wouldn't have allowed it.

Borg was playing with wood, with heavy topspin, as Vilas. Your argument just doesn't sound logical. All you are trying to argue is Courier was better on other surfaces.

Kevin T
05-24-2006, 01:26 PM
Tennis Guy, if you are arguing the Donnay Borg used offered the same power/spin/etc., then you need to change your name. Are you telling me that Borg was hitting as hard, with as much spin and action in 1979 as Nadal et al. are these days. Nadal would not be hitting with the same authority off either wing and his serve would be worse than it is now, which is pathetic. His return, now a strength, would be a shadow of the current version. And how many of those slam finals did Pete win? Again, we are using one match for comparison. Pressure/nerves etc. in a final are far different. The smell of the trophy is much more intense in the finals than the semis, quarters, etc. How about the Davis Cup when Pete was money on mud-slow red clay against Russia? Would you take the Colts or the St. Louis Rams of 2000 against an all-time great team like the 70's Steelers, only because they were playing indoors on carpet?

superman1
05-24-2006, 04:39 PM
Borg hit with spin, yeah, but with completely different form than Nadal. If Nadal tried hitting up on the ball with a wooden racquet, the ball would probably land in the service box and just sit up. Borg hit through the ball and muscled it, Nadal hits up on the ball and lets his strings bounce it across the court.

I think Nadal would do well with any racquet, because of his athleticism, but he'd be a completely different player in any other era.

The tennis guy
05-25-2006, 10:01 AM
Tennis Guy, if you are arguing the Donnay Borg used offered the same power/spin/etc., then you need to change your name. Are you telling me that Borg was hitting as hard, with as much spin and action in 1979 as Nadal et al. are these days. Nadal would not be hitting with the same authority off either wing and his serve would be worse than it is now, which is pathetic. His return, now a strength, would be a shadow of the current version.

I just don't understand your point. If Nadal were playing with wood at Borg's time, he didn't have to play with today's power and spin to win.

And how many of those slam finals did Pete win? Again, we are using one match for comparison. Pressure/nerves etc. in a final are far different. The smell of the trophy is much more intense in the finals than the semis, quarters, etc. How about the Davis Cup when Pete was money on mud-slow red clay against Russia? Would you take the Colts or the St. Louis Rams of 2000 against an all-time great team like the 70's Steelers, only because they were playing indoors on carpet?

Sampras won 2 Aussie finals, lost 1, won 5 US finals, lost 3. Clay is a different story.

Who did he play against Russian? Chesnokov, an over the hill player ranked 90s at the time. Football is team sports, the difference of surface is not deciding factor. For Sampras, clay is a deciding factor. He was never able to even get to French final, semi only once compared to his achievement on other surfaces.

Rabbit
05-25-2006, 10:42 AM
Sampras won 2 Aussie finals, lost 1, won 5 US finals, lost 3. Clay is a different story.

Who did he play against Russian? Chesnokov, an over the hill player ranked 90s at the time. Football is team sports, the difference of surface is not deciding factor. For Sampras, clay is a deciding factor. He was never able to even get to French final, semi only once compared to his achievement on other surfaces

In the '95 Davis Cup tie in Russia, Sampras did play Chesnokov. Chesnokov was ranked 90 at the time. It should be noted, however, that rankings have little to do with Davis Cup. Chesnokov earlier that year against Germany at home had gone 4 sets with Becker and beat Stich in the 2nd singles match.

He also straight setted Kafelnikov and Oholvskiy, both of whom were regarded as better clay court players and played more doubles than Sampras. Sampras teamed with Todd Martin for the win.

Sampras also played Kafelnikov who was ranked 6th at the time and generally regarded a better clay court player than Sampras. Kafelnikov had reached the semis of Roland Garros that year losing to the eventual winner Muster in the semi-finals.

Sampras played in front of a Russian crowd on a surface that was his least favorite. You assertion then that Sampras was a "clay" pigeon on the surface may be somewhat at odds with the fact. I also posted a history of Sampras' efforts on clay and they bear out some really good, if not stellar results.

I just don't understand your point. If Nadal were playing with wood at Borg's time, he didn't have to play with today's power and spin to win.


I think the point is that Nadal's strength is his power and spin which he woudn't be able to use playing with wood. His grips and strokes are very extreme and wouldn't translate well to wood. His defensive skills might also be compromised since he wouldn't have as user friendly a frame to whip around. His athletic ability is unquestioned though.

The tennis guy
05-25-2006, 10:57 AM
You assertion then that Sampras was a "clay" pigeon on the surface may be somewhat at odds with the fact. I also posted a history of Sampras' efforts on clay and they bear out some really good, if not stellar results.

If you want to spin Sampras' clay court result, go ahead. To me, only 1 master title, and 1 French semi is just OK in my book. I didn't say he was terrible on clay. He was just OK.

Chadwixx
05-25-2006, 11:08 AM
In the '95 Davis Cup tie in Russia, Sampras did play Chesnokov. Chesnokov was ranked 90 at the time. It should be noted, however, that rankings have little to do with Davis Cup.

I think the point is that Nadal's strength is his power and spin which he woudn't be able to use playing with wood. His grips and strokes are very extreme and wouldn't translate well to wood. His defensive skills might also be compromised since he wouldn't have as user friendly a frame to whip around. His athletic ability is unquestioned though.

Im glad your personal beliefs outweigh the reality of chesnokov's actually ranking. Why even rank them, we can just ask rabbit, Lol.

Why is ok to say the older players would adapt their game type to the modern technology, yet nadal wouldnt make an equal adaptation?

Kevin T
05-25-2006, 03:27 PM
Tennis Guy,

We could go 'round and 'round for days, so we'll have to agree to disagree.

Chadwixx,

Chesnokov had a career high ranking of 9 in 1991 and was basically raised on the red dirt. It's likely Pete didn't even see red clay until his teens. If you want to argue that one match with Fed in the twilight of Pete's career made Fed the better player, I think I'll use your logic with this one. Surely a top 10 clay court specialist playing FOR his home country IN his home country should beat the clay court slouch Pete Sampras!?

And Nadal would adapt and likely be a fine player but you cannot make equipment comparisons between eras in tennis, or golf, for that matter. If you have played with wood, you likely know that he wouldn't be ripping head-high topspin groundies from 3 feet behind the baseline with a Dunlop Maxply or Donnay Borg. The new equipment is one reason S&V tennis is dead. If everyone played with wood, it would still be an attractive option.

Chadwixx
05-25-2006, 04:05 PM
Tennis Guy,

We could go 'round and 'round for days, so we'll have to agree to disagree.

Chadwixx,

Chesnokov had a career high ranking of 9 in 1991 and was basically raised on the red dirt. It's likely Pete didn't even see red clay until his teens. If you want to argue that one match with Fed in the twilight of Pete's career made Fed the better player, I think I'll use your logic with this one. Surely a top 10 clay court specialist playing FOR his home country IN his home country should beat the clay court slouch Pete Sampras!?

And Nadal would adapt and likely be a fine player but you cannot make equipment comparisons between eras in tennis, or golf, for that matter. If you have played with wood, you likely know that he wouldn't be ripping head-high topspin groundies from 3 feet behind the baseline with a Dunlop Maxply or Donnay Borg. The new equipment is one reason S&V tennis is dead. If everyone played with wood, it would still be an attractive option.

The excuse paragraph is nice but chesnokov was ranked 90 at the time, he wasnt playing he best tennis. Pete was not in the twilight of his career, he went on to win another grand slam. The guy was like 31, stop making him sound like bobby riggs.

How did lendl do it with his little head racket? Im just curious how you know for a fact that he cannot do it. It seems like you guys turn speculation to fact when your trying to make points.

Kevin T
05-25-2006, 04:13 PM
I don't know Chaddy Boy. According to you, in previous threads, Agassi was serving 90mph back in the 90's and rallies were in slow motion, akin to Lawn Tennis. I guess Lendl was moonballing it.

superman1
05-25-2006, 04:29 PM
It's just physics, dude. You don't need to see Nadal hit with wood to know that he'd have to completely change his forehand to adapt to it. You can spin with wood, but you can't spin high and deep and fast, it's just not possible. Unless you're on horse steroids and can hit as hard as humanely possible for the duration of a match. Watch Lendl and Borg hit, they whip through the ball and get a lot of velocity as a result. If they hit up on the ball, it would land in the service box.

Chadwixx
05-25-2006, 04:32 PM
I don't know Chaddy Boy. According to you, in previous threads, Agassi was serving 90mph back in the 90's and rallies were in slow motion, akin to Lawn Tennis. I guess Lendl was moonballing it.

Have you ever seen early agassi play? He mostly kicked the ball into play and won it from the ground. Id say his avg 1st serve speed at the end of a match was around 100mph. Id say he didnt really start pounding the first serve until 1996-1997 (rough guess, just watch some matches and you will notice it).

!Tym
05-25-2006, 04:39 PM
Courier made the finals of Roland Garros & Wimbledon in 93. Let's see Nadal match or better that performance and then there may be room for discussion. Courier has 2 French Opens, I'm sure Nadal will have more, but then again, everyone said Kuerten was unbeatable at RG as well; better than Borg even. He wound up with 3. Borg has 6?

Point being, the guy has to do it before it can be an accomplishment.

Yes, but to be fair to Guga, injuries played a hand in that.

Even Courier got dead arm. The key with Nadal is how will his body hold up, not his peak ability.

prostaff18
05-25-2006, 05:08 PM
Sampras is the best ever. You cant even rate laver becaue of the technology. If Fed or Sampras was to play back in the day with wood they would have beat everyone then just like they do now(and then for Pete). They are too versitile.
Fed is the man and he will win the French this year!!!!!

Rabbit
05-26-2006, 05:14 AM
Im glad your personal beliefs outweigh the reality of chesnokov's actually ranking. Why even rank them, we can just ask rabbit, Lol.

Why is ok to say the older players would adapt their game type to the modern technology, yet nadal wouldnt make an equal adaptation?

And why do you fail to acknowlege that Sampras also beat Kafelnikov on clay, the same clay on the same weekend and that Kafelnikov was ranked #6 at the time? Your ability to select facts far exceeds your ability to produce a cohesive argument. The only thing you're really consistent at as far as I can tell is being wrong.