Agassi or Connors?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by flying24, Jan 18, 2007.

?

Who do you rate as the greater player-Agassi or Connors?

  1. Agassi

    55.8%
  2. Connors

    44.2%
  1. flying24

    flying24 Banned

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Messages:
    1,924
    Alot of people compare the way Agassi and Connors played as extremely similar and talk about them as very alike in their playing styles. Which one of the 2 do you rate as the greater player?
     
    #1
  2. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2,495
    #2
  3. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    Agassi, at his best was a much better player than Connors ever was at his best.
     
    #3
  4. chrisdaniel

    chrisdaniel Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    Messages:
    425
    Andre

    AGASSI!!!! two great champs..but I think Agassi has Connors beat by a little bit
     
    #4
  5. oscar_2424

    oscar_2424 Legend

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2005
    Messages:
    7,239
    Location:
    Hallandale, Florida
    I didnt watch Connors, so i have to go with the guy i saw play, AA.
     
    #5
  6. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2005
    Messages:
    694
    Location:
    Chicago
    Connors certainly had the more impressive career. Both players won eight majors, but Connors reached more finals and semifinals. Both won majors on grass, clay, and hard courts. Connors won far more titles than Agassi. Most importantly, Connors spent five years atop the pro rankings, as opposed to only one for Agassi. Connors also set the long-standing record for consecutive weeks at No. 1, which is finally due to be broken by Federer. While Agassi may have faced two of the greatest players of all time in Sampras and Federer, Connors played in the same era as three all-time greats: Borg, McEnroe and Lendl. Connors and Agassi were both colorful characters who helped popularize the game, though Connors was arguably the more successful figurehead, as tennis was a much more popular sport in the 1970s and '80s than in the '90s and 2000s. Ultimately, the up-and-down nature of Agassi's career, and his poor record in the biggest matches against his toughest rivals, puts him solidly beneath Connors in historical terms.
     
    #6
  7. rasajadad

    rasajadad Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 24, 2006
    Messages:
    1,993
    Location:
    Western MA
    I vote for Connors. Anyone who can get two balls in the court in a row with that POK Wilson T2000 has to have been superhuman! ;-)
     
    #7
  8. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
    Agassi for his career golden grand slam (the only male in hostory to achive this). Agassi also the only man to win the 4 slams on their 4 different surfaces. Agassi has less tournmanets than Connors, but Agassi has more significant tournmanets. Connors was renound for playing even the smallest of tournaments. Agassi holds 17 MS which is more than anyone else in Men's tennis history. Agassi has losing H2H with Sampras, but Sampras is probabely the best player of all time (We will see about Fed at the end of this career). Many people seem to foget that Agassi still won 14 matches agaginst Sampras, including a GS final, many other finals, and some GS semis to.
     
    #8
  9. Noire

    Noire New User

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2006
    Messages:
    37
    I vote for Agassi.

    I dont know anything about Connors that much. I'm just being honest. I just grew up watching Andre
     
    #9
  10. LttlElvis

    LttlElvis Professional

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2005
    Messages:
    1,359
    Both are two of my all time favorite players. Matching them stroke for stroke, I think Agassi had the better game. However, I would give my vote to Connors for his contributions to the history of the game. He popularized tennis in the 70s. He helped bring tennis to TV. He popularized the 2 handed backhand. He changed the game from a country club sport to one that could be enjoyed by all. Incredible work ethic, and most importantly, he never gave up. Probably not the greatest player in tennis, but he has to be considered the most important to the game.
     
    #10
  11. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2005
    Messages:
    694
    Location:
    Chicago
    The problem with all of Agassi's "records" is that they haven't been relevant for that long. The "career Golden Grand Slam" wasn't even a possibility for most of tennis history, when tennis was not an Olympic event. The "career Grand Slam" in general, I think, was invented to give Agassi some credibility, and is not the same thing as the true Grand Slam, which remains the greatest and most prestigious achievement in tennis. The modern surfaces are also a new thing; you can't rank Agassi ahead of past greats by this criterion, b/c this criterion didn't exist in their time. It only proves that Agassi was an all-surface player, which Connors was as well, perhaps even more so. "Masters Series" titles is also a relatively new phenomenon, and this record of Agassi's will not last long; Federer will almost certainly far surpass it. Connors won a great many important events -- probably more than Agassi, and you can't blame him that they weren't called "Masters Series" events at the time.
     
    #11
  12. bluegrasser

    bluegrasser Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Messages:
    2,342
    From start to finish, I'd have to say Connors, but the final stretch goes to AA.
     
    #12
  13. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    In that case, you could say the same thing about Connors...... "you can't rank the past greats ahead of modern players because the criterion is not the same".

    I'm quite certain if all the Slams were played on grass during the Sampras era, Sampras would probably have 20+ slams, etc, etc, etc.

    "Pound for pound", Agassi in his prime will kick Connors (in his prime) teeth in..... On any surface.

    He had a better serve, better strokes on both sides, and YES a better return.
     
    #13
  14. Dho4001

    Dho4001 Rookie

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2007
    Messages:
    157
    Agassi all the way. :)
     
    #14
  15. grand slam federer

    grand slam federer New User

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2007
    Messages:
    43
    agassi

    agassi is better not by much reason is because he played in a harder
    decade than connors and tennis is quicker and stronger agassi had players
    like the great pete sampras also courier pat rafter m.chang kuerten at
    his best the same with marat safin and much more players connors
    had not as much apart from mceroe lendl and a bit of borg
     
    #15
  16. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    4,380
    Connors won tons of tournaments on all surfaces, which were the equivalents of the Masters Series today: US pro, South Africa Open, US clay, US indoor. Its not true, that he won only quantitity, not quality tournaments.The only title, Agassi has the favor of winning, is RG, when he had the advantage, not to face clay king Kuerten. I personally doubt, that Connors would have won RG in his prime against Borg or Vilas, when he couldn't play it. But he would have won more AO, of he had played there more often. Connors won 5 USO on all surfaces, against some of the best all time. He beat Lendl twice, when past his prime, Agassi could never touch the aging Lendl at USO.
     
    #16
  17. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    Why is it that people always make ridiculous comments like this??^^^^^

    Well urban, if this is the logic you are going to use to defend your stance, two could make these arguments......Connors had the advantage of not having to play Sampras every year he won the US Open, and Wimbledon.
     
    #17
  18. oberyn

    oberyn Professional

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,121
    Better game: Agassi

    Better career: Very close call, but I'd probably go with Connors.
     
    #18
  19. Condoleezza

    Condoleezza Banned

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    Messages:
    1,418

    Connors is not great.
    He was and is a truly mean and shallow character.

    Condi
     
    #19
  20. capriatifanatic

    capriatifanatic Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2006
    Messages:
    645
    Connors by far. Agassi is a great player but he isnt top 10 all time, Connors is easily top 10, and maybe top 5. Connors is so underrated by tennis fans who only hype the most recent. Game wise he and Agassi matched up pretty closely maybe but even there I give Connors the slight edge overall, the difference is Connors mantained a peak level of mental and physical dedication to playing his best for 20 years, not the last 7 years of his career with maybe 1 or 2 years out of the 12 before that like Agassi.

    Game wise alone:

    First Serve-Agassi
    Second Serve-Agassi
    Return of Serve off first serve-Connors
    Return of Serve off second serve-Agassi
    Forehand-Agassi
    Backhand-Connors
    Movement-Connors
    Net Game-Connors
    Mental Toughness-Connors
    Court Smarts-even
    Passing Shots-even
    Approach Shots-Connors

    I honestly think Connors had the slightly better game, but he certainly had the way more consistent career at the highest level. As for competition, Agassi faced Sampras people say but Agassi won only 2 slams during Sampras's prime that he played or that wasnt a French Open. 92 Wimbledon he won before Pete's prime, 99 French Open he won, 99 U.S Open he won when Pete didnt play, then he won 3 Australian Opens over Kafelnikov, Clement, and Schuettler in finals. Who else was there besides Pete, Chang, Kafelnikov, 1 trick pony Ivanisevic, those players make Fed's competition look great by comparision. Connors faced multiple all time greats like Borg, Lendl, McEnroe in their primes and took them all down to win his 8 slams. So competition argument is far in Connors favor too.
     
    #20
  21. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    12,606
    Location:
    at the bottom of every hill I come to
    There have been 3 players in Open tennis who've had extraordinarly long careers; 1. Rosewall, 2. Connors, 3. Agassi. It's further extraordinary that Rosewall played Connors at the end of his career and Agassi played Connors at the end of his. It would seem that the tour revolves in circles.

    I agree with the post above mine assessing the games of Connors and Agassi. I think Connors had more of an all-court attacking game while Agassi was more into controlling the center of the court and making his opponent lose through physical attrition. Connors was always attacking while Agassi was beating his opponents to death.

    I think it's really ironic that while their careers roughly paralleled each other, Connors hated Agassi for what Agassi did to him at the Open. If y'all remember, the first 5 set match Agassi won was against.....yep Jimmy Connors. Agassi tanked a set love in an effort to make a match he knew he could win go 5 sets.

    Agassi was not all roses and kisses during his career either. He had at least as much attitude as Connors and was just as vicious. Agassi understood PR more than Connors or at least cared about it more. There is little doubt in my mind which player earned more off court anyway. It's all about the dead presidents to both of these guys, don't ever let anyone kid you. Connors was more honest about himself I think than Agassi.

    All that aside.....who is best? Well, Connors' best year is easy to pick, 1974. In 1974 he won 3 of the four majors and most likely would have won the French had he been allowed to play it. It's harder, if not impossible to pick Agassi's best year. I could answer the question like a politician and say that Connors maintained a more consistent and higher level of tennis over an extraordinarily long period of time, far longer than Agassi. Agassi, on the other hand, probably had higher peaks than Connors.

    In the end, if I had to pick who was better in their prime, it'd be awfully hard to pick anyone as being better than Connors in '74.
     
    #21
  22. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    There is no WAY Connors backhand came anywhere near Agassi's. NO WAY! Agassi has possibly the greatest two handed backhand EVER!
     
    #22
  23. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    12,606
    Location:
    at the bottom of every hill I come to
    I agree that Connors had a better backhand than Agassi. It was a different shot than Agassi's, more geared to putting someone on the defensive. All that aside, when someone asked Pancho Gonsalez about Agassi's forehand, Gonsalez replied "His backhand is his better shot." Gonsalez probably knew a thing or two about Agassi. He was once Agassi's brother-in-law.
     
    #23
  24. bluegrasser

    bluegrasser Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Messages:
    2,342
    Good post - agree.....
     
    #24
  25. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    7,924
    Only one event-the 1974 French Open, which he was banned from playing-is preventing Connors from being mentioned along with Laver, Sampras, Federer as the best of all time.

    I can't say the same for Agassi.

    And don't forget, Federer is about to pass Connors for one of the sports' most important records(even Federer says he considers it one of his most important records & is looking forward to that week)-consecutive weeks at #1. I wonder where Agassi is ranked on that list.

    Connors was year end #1 five times, Agassi 0.

    This really isn't a close call, unless you weren't alive throughout most of Connors' career.

    I'm a bit confused, what's your definition of "peaks?" Nothing in Agassi's career came remotely close to Connors' peak-winning 3 of the 4 slams in one year. And Connors had longer streaks ranked at 1,2,3,4,5, than Agassi.
     
    #25
  26. Sagittar

    Sagittar Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 14, 2006
    Messages:
    1,692
    Location:
    center of the world
    i vote for agassi but admit that i haven't seen connors that much either ..
     
    #26
  27. paterson

    paterson New User

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Messages:
    82
    The truth about Connors record:


    1. He had losing records against Borg, Lendl and Mac. He also lost to Borg 4 times in a row in Wimbledon.

    2. Borg didn't become "the computer" No.1 till 1979. The reason was Borg played alot less tournaments compared to Connors. Borg always had a better winning percentage than Connors.

    3. 3 of 8 major wins were were against Phil Dent(journeyman) and aging Ken Rosewall (age 39).

    4. From 1979-81, when Borg and McEnroe were winning the majors , where was Connors? He was losing to these guys in SFs.

    5. When Jimbo came back to RG in 79 why didn't he win it ? How come he could not stop Borg or WIlander or Lendl from winning?

    6. Jimbo won only 1 year-end Masters Cup. Lendl has won 5. McEnroe 2. Borg 2.

    Conclusion: no doubt he was remarkably consistent. But he was never the
    dominant guy. When Borg took over his #1 position Connors had to wait until Borg quit and Mac dropped form to regain his #1 ranking and he still did not hold on it for long.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2007
    #27
  28. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2004
    Messages:
    12,606
    Location:
    at the bottom of every hill I come to
    I was trying to be nice... ;) Agassi has the distinction of winning on 4 distinctly different surfaces. Some would argue that the grass in Oz, Wimbledon and the Open were distinctly different, but they were more similar. Of course, Connors won the Open on 3 distinctly different surfaces.

    No exuses versus Borg. Borg owned Connors and everyone knew it. Borg would struggle against Victor Amaya at Wimbledon and then destroy Connors.

    Against Lendl, Connors fell off when he was 32 years old. You have to give him props. Prior to that, the record was 13 - 5 Connors. And, Connors was giving Lendl 8 years. Connors also took a year off due to wrist surgery. He did come back and wasn't exactly blown off the court by Lendl. The comparison may not be all that fair.

    Against McEnroe, Connors was giving away 5 years. He was 14 - 20 with McEnroe and competitive. His losing streak occurred when McEnroe was primed.


    Yeah, but Rosewall beat a bunch of guys half his age to get to the finals. Ken Rosewall was also a freak of nature continuing to win in his 40s against guys who weren't even born when he won his first Grand Slam at the French. Rosewall was one of the greatest players to ever step on court.

    Yeah, but you failed to mention that Connors other 5 wins were against

    Borg(2)
    McEnroe at Wimbledon on grass
    Lendl(2) at the Open on hardcourt when Connors was 30 and 31. Lendl by contrast was 22 and 23.


    Yeah, but 82 - 84 Connors was back in the finals of the same Grand Slams. Winning one against McEnroe at Wimbledon (82), Lendl at the Open (82) and again against Lendl at the Open (83). He was also over 30.

    Well, 5 years is a long time. Why didn't McEnroe win Wimbledon in '85 after destroying Connors there?

    And Nastase has 4. What's your point?

    I agree. He wasn't dominant like Rosewall wasn't dominant or Agassi wasn't dominant.

    But, like the other two, he had longevity.

    He had more weeks at #1 than anyone else.

    He had more titles than anyone else.

    He had more "fire in the belly" than anyone else.

    He made the semis of the US Open in 1991 at the age of 39. This alone completely refutes the argument that the competition was less in his prime.

    He had arguably the #1 or #2 return of serve all-time.
     
    Last edited: Jan 22, 2007
    #28
  29. joeyscl

    joeyscl Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2006
    Messages:
    277
    All of you forgot how much Conners has helped Andy Roddick recently ;)
     
    #29
  30. chrisdaniel

    chrisdaniel Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2004
    Messages:
    425
    ...

    : / to the last comment... yes hes helped Andy... it kinda sucks to compare the two guys...i feel bad about taking away from these guys...

    Two Amazing champs that are similiar,thats cool how that can happen...

    I love Andre Agassi and see his carreer and style of play as very much like Connors..and if i was born earlier I would probley love Connors the same way.. but when you look at the carreer in numbers,little factors here and there make it very hard to say who is greater..hell,that is why we are asking the question in the first place.... I say these two should go down as two of the greatest players and baseliners of all time...and that means alot!!
     
    #30
  31. martin

    martin Banned

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    Messages:
    1,290
    Without any doubt: Connors.

    It really surprises me that there are people who say that Agassi had the better game/was the better player. Certainly people who didn't see Connors play and call Agassi the better player.

    The records: Connors won a record of 109 tournaments and was longer no. 1 than Agassi. Agassi only won about 60 tournaments. Won bigger tournaments and was always at least in the semifinals of Wimbledon and US open.
    Also he was longer no. 1 than Borg and Mcenroe and won a lot more tournaments.

    The servicereturn of connors was better;
    his mentality was better;
    and had a better technique.
    He was also longer in the top 10.

    Agassi was a very good player but not a great player because he was always standing in the shadows of Sampras.
    Connors was a great player because he was a ruler in his time.
     
    #31
  32. martin

    martin Banned

    Joined:
    May 6, 2004
    Messages:
    1,290
    Connors winning record:

    Singles Record: 1222 - 269

    Singles Titles: 105

    Doubles Record: 173 - 78

    Doubles Titles: 15

    Prize Money: $8,641,040

    Agassi winning record:

    Singles Record: 870 - 274

    Singles Titles: 60

    Doubles Record: 40 - 42

    Doubles Titles: 1

    Prize Money: $31,152,975

    Connors is better period.
     
    #32
  33. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    martin you forgot one stat:

    0-2 against Agassi.
     
    #33
  34. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
    Connors was undoubtably consistant and thats what gave him his number 1 ranking for so long (and his many minor tournaments), but look what happens win he plays the great players.

    Head2Heads

    Connors vs. Agassi, 0-2

    Connors vs. Mcenroe, 14-20

    Connors vs. Lendl, 13-22

    Connors vs. Sampras, 0-2

    Agassi vs. Mcenroe, 2-2*

    Agassi vs. Lendl, 2-6

    Agassi vs. Sampras, 14-20

    *Agassi retired in 1 of Macenroe's victory after winning the 1st set 6-4, traling 3-0 in the 2nd set.

    As you can see Agassi performed better against the great players and himself held a 2-0 victory over Connors.

    Then look what happens when Connors plays "lesser great players"

    Connors vs. Becker, 0-6

    Connors vs. Edberg, 6-6

    Connors vs. Courier, 0-3

    Connors vs. Willander, 0-5

    Agassi vs. Becker, 10-4

    Agassi vs. Edberg, 6-3

    Agassi vs. Courier, 5-7

    Agassi vs. Willander, 5-2

    Connors continues to fail to impress, without a single winning Head2Head. Agassi has convincing leads over 3 of the 4 players.

    OK then, what about players with about just few slams each. There was not much overlap here (Agassi and Connors played different people), but here are some Head2Heads between both players and oponents with 2 or 3 grand slams.

    Connors vs. Bruguera, 1-1

    Connors vs. Nastase, 8-12

    Connors vs. Smith (Stan), 14-4

    Connors vs. Ash, 5-1

    Agassi vs. Bruguera, 7-2

    Agassi vs. Rafter, 10-5

    Agassi vs. Kuerten, 7-4

    Agassi vs. Kafelnikov, 8-4

    Connors finally gets his wins on the board here, but Agassi seems to have a better record, against better oponents too.

    Finally the one slams wonders who played both players:

    Connors vs. Stich, 1-3

    Connors vs. Chang, 0-1

    Connors vs. Gomez, 10-1

    Connors vs. Noah, 6-2

    Agassi vs. Stich, 6-0

    Agassi vs. Chang, 15-7

    Agassi vs. Gomez, 2-3

    Agassi vs. Noah, 1-1


    Well Connors sure gave Gomez a thumping anyway :) , but still trails to Agassi. Connors 2 winning, 2 losing. Agassi 2 winning, 1 losing, 1 drawing

    I think we can safely conclude Agassi, although less consistant, was defenitely better.

     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2007
    #34
  35. oberyn

    oberyn Professional

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2006
    Messages:
    1,121


    I'm not disputing your overall conclusion (I don't agree with it, but that's not really the point), but don't you think that a lot of your head-to-heads don't really provide a lot of useful information to the discussion?

    I mean, Connors' head to head record against Agassi, Sampras, and Courier?

    Connors won 3 majors in 1974. At the time he won the 1974 U.S. Open, he was 22 years old. Agassi and Courier were 4 year old, and Sampras had just turned 3. Is he supposed to be beating guys who were 18-19 years younger than he was? He only had a decade-and-a-half on Becker and Edberg. Come on.

    That's like trotting out Agassi's head-to-head records against Federer and Nadal and saying those records mean the same thing as his head-to-head records against Sampras, Courier, Becker, Edberg, Chang, et al.
     
    #35
  36. lambielspins

    lambielspins Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2,715
    What a joke, showing Connors head to head vs much younger opponents like Agassi, Becker, Edberg, and Courier as examples. I guess in the future we can compare Agassi to a future great by comparing Agassi's head to heads with Federer and Nadal compared to this younger player to come along in the future, after all we are dismissing age with Connors who actually had a real multi-year peak in his prime age unlike Agassi as well. Agassi never fared particularly well against other great baseliners though.

    Agassi vs Federer-Federer leads 8-3, Federer won last 8 meetings. So what if Agassi was a bit older, he still was in the top 10 for every single one of those final 8 meetings and couldnt even win 1 with that many chances. Also considering he won 5 of his 8 slam titles, and spent him most time at #1, from ages 29-33, the "so old" argument for a 33-35 old Agassi has far less value then others his age. Given Agassi's degree of late career success you absolutely can't refer to his age the same way you can for other players.

    Agassi vs Lendl-Lendl leads 6-2. In 1988 and 1989 Agassi was already a top 5 player but went 0-5 vs Lendl. Against an old Lendl in 92-93 Agassi won their final 2 meetings.

    Agassi vs Courier-Courier leads 7-5 overall, Courier won 6 in a row at one point. In 1989 and 1990 when both were coming up, but Agassi had the much higher ranking and status Agassi led 4-2. During 91-93 when Courier won all 4 of his slam titles, and was either #1 or #2 in the World Agassi lost all 5 matches, despite the fact Agassi himself was playing well enough to win Wimbledon 92 and be runner up(to Courier)in the 91 French Open. On the other hand Courier won his only match with Agassi in 1995 when Agassi had his then-career best year and Courier was in a steady decline that would continue the rest of his career.

    It is clear Agassi had alot of trouble playing against any of the other great baseliners he played be it Federer, Courier, and Lendl.
     
    #36
  37. lambielspins

    lambielspins Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2,715
    Exactly what I was thinking. Connors was 18-19 years older then some of the players who certain Agassi's backers go on gloating off the head to heads of Connors with, and Connors had a real prime that lasted throughout all his prime years and even held on to win slams past 30 while never veering from the top all his 20s, he did not waste most of his 20s and come back rejuvenated for another comeback at almost 30 like Agassi. Yet these same Agassi backers dimiss his 8 match losing streak with Federer, when Agassi was only 1/2 year-2 1/2 years from his last slam title and last time at #1. Talk about a two faced argument.
     
    #37
  38. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
    If we look at the great players around in Connors's so called prime he still can't have a winning H2H against any of them. Borg, Macenroe, Newcombe. Connors was crushed by Macenroe in the same way Sampras crushed Agassi, but it is clear that Sampras is supiror to Mcenroe. Borg owned Connors, and the only significant times Connors beat Borg were at the USO, where Borg was defentily at his weakest mentally. Connors beat an aging Laver if that worth anything to you people. If you deny that Connors played any of these great players when he was at his prime, then you admit that he was at his prime in a weak era where he did not have to play the great players.

    Comparisons to a player like Federer are irrelevant. I doubt that Connors would have faired well against Federer, and what ever you people say; Agassi's prime was 1995 in my opnion, and this is why:

    Agassi won most tournaments (7) in 1995
    Had best season wins to losses (72-10), this is better than Sampras's best season! (72-12)
    Played Sampras in 5 finals and won 3 of them, including AO
    Had best winning streak (26 matches)

    Also consider that most of the H2H stated were before Agassi's prime. You keep stating that Agassi played on late, and played better later (no I may not agree with this but if you stick to it, consider this). All the H2H between Agassi and players Connors played were when Agassi was very young. This worked against Agassi you know. Indeed you can hardly say that Agassi's victories against COnnors in 1988 and 1989 were anywhere near Agassi's prime (be that your prime of approx. 2003 or mine of 1995).
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2007
    #38
  39. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    7,924
    connors did not pad his record with minor events, he only played 18-20 events a year during his prime years, he just was that dominant & won around 12-15 of them a year. he won many events that were as big as masters series events today, against great fields. I know you're probably new to the game, & the tennis media/atp haven't done a great job of educating new fans about what events were big in the 70s/80s(esp since many no longer exist) & how different the tour's structure was. the US Open & Wimbledon were far more important than the other slams in that time, as evidenced by so many top players skipping the AO & the French.

    Several events on tour actually offered more ranking points than the Australian Open back then, so that really blows away your using slam counts as the way to determine who was great in that era as well as your theory that connors played only minor events to stay at #1.
    (and 2 slam winner Smith was much more highly regarded in his time than a rafter or kafelnikov was in theirs, the comparison isn't valid) I can't believe you seriously think the olympics, which only became a medal sport in 1988, an important criteria for rating alltime players.

    and your head to head stats are a bit absurd. becker/edberg were 15 years younger than connors, agassi/sampras were 18 years younger.

    why not show connors' head to head vs the top players of his era? there were other players than borg & mac you know(& not leading the head to head vs them isn't some damning evidence that he was a kafelninov type #1 or something)

    look up connors vs newcombe, tanner, panatta, orantes, gerulaitis, rosewall, vilas, gottfried, roche, kodes, okker, ramirez, stockton, dibbs, pecci, solomon, mayer, clerc, kriek.

    would be interesting to see how many of these top 10 guys he beat back to win those "minor events" you keep going on about.
     
    #39
  40. lambielspins

    lambielspins Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2,715
    I dont think Agassi was in his prime in 1988 and 1989, I agree Agassi was not and Connors was not. However who do you believe was closer to his prime Agassi or Connors? I doubt you will say you honestly believe it was Connors who was closer then Agassi at that point. They also played only 2 matches those 2 years IIRC.

    As for Agassi's prime I dont see what is so strange about saying his prime was probably 1999-2003 anyway. Like I said 5 of his 8 slam titles came during this period, his most time spent not only at #1(since I know you will bring up Sampras keeping Agassi from #1)but in the top 3 regularly was during that time. If one says 1994-1995 was Agassi's prime for example, that means he only has a 2 year prime which isnt really an impressive thing when you think about it.

    You are right Connors was owned by Borg for a period, but that is the only other great baseliner that was the case. However Connors from 1982-1984 at ages of 31-33 was still doing quite well against Lendl, more then holding his own. I believe Connors at ages 31-33 was as far from his prime as the 33-35 year old Agassi who went 0-8 vs Federer. Connors did very well vs Vilas as well, Courier and Vilas are totally different style of baseliners, but do you consider Courier significantly greater then Vilas?

    So the way I see it Connors faced 3 great baseliners in Borg, Lendl, and Vilas; Agassi 3 in Courier, Federer, and Lendl. Considering the points in their careers they were at, Connors fared much better vs Lendl and Vilas then Agassi did vs any of the 3.
     
    #40
  41. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
    If you are discounting great base liners that Connors was old then he played then you have to discout Federer from Agassi's list. However I feel the more relevant issue here is why single out baseliners? Connors faired remarkably poorely against many Seve Vollyers. Agassi has a better record here.

    (Indeed I do consider Connors greater than Villas)
     
    #41
  42. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
    Agassi was still a teenager in 1988 and 1989, and an overweight, rebelious cheese burger eating one at that. Connors was in his mid 30s. Connors was renound for his logitivity though so he was still playing well. These 2 matches themselves are of course not that significant though, as they would have needed at leat 10 matches to be able to draw a real conclusion. However they are all factors, and Agassi's H2H counts in his favour.
     
    #42
  43. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    7,924
    Laver was ranked #4 the year Connors first ended #1.

    Its McEnroe, not MacEnroe. And this doesn't look like a crushing head to head to me(also Connors was 7 years older than Mac) All the names you mentioned have a significant edge in age over Connors.

    http://www.atptennis.com/5/en/players/headtohead/default.asp?playernum1=M047&playernum2=C044

    The win Connors had over Mac indoors in 1989 is rather startling, since Connors was 37 & just about to leave the tour due to injury, while Mac was 30 & the #4 player in the world.

    That happens when greats are dominant. Like today, Federer wins everything so everyone else looks bad, but they aren't, he's just that good. Ditto Connors. And Connors was still able to win majors with a rival like Borg around (& its a really lame argument to say Borg was mentally weak at the US Open. Sounds like your getting a bit desperate in your quest to put down Connors.

    Yeah, no s sherlock. Agassi wasn't in his in his prime at the 1988/89 US Open. And you think Connors was? His prime was 1974-78. He was a huge underdog vs Agassi in those matches, I was at the 1989 match, nobody gave Connors a shot at all.

    Agassi was 18/19 in 1988/89 & Connors was 36/37. The fact that Connors was even competitive in those matches makes you wonder what the outcome would be if he was 10-15 years younger.

    Connors was the #6 seed in '88 while Agassi was #4. In '89 he was 13 while Agassi was 6. Shortly after 1989 season, Connors had surgery for a wrist injury that was bothering him through 1989. Yet Agassi needed 5 sets to beat a injured 37 year old way past his prime.

    noeledmonds, when did you start watching tennis? I doubt you ever saw Connors play.
     
    #43
  44. lambielspins

    lambielspins Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2,715

    I was comparing their records against baseliners since they are both baseliners themselves, so it made sense from my standpoint to compare them and how well each fared vs other greats who were that category of player both fit in. Fine though, if Agassi did better vs serve-volley players then Connors, maybe that is something I wasnt taking into account enough. As for how they did vs serve-volleyer examples though do you consider Agassi did better vs Sampras, then McEnroe-Connors for instance? Agassi has never beaten Sampras at Wimbledon or the U.S Open, even if he has a 2-1 vs him at the Australian Open, and 1-0 at the French . Connors has beaten McEnroe at both Wimbledon and the U.S Open more then once IIRC, they did not play at the French until 1984 IIRC, and they never played at the Australian(which both didnt play often). There are other great serve-volley
    players, and other very players who were serve-volleyers to go by, but that would be the first comparision between the respective best of each of their eras.

    As I said I dont believe Connors in the 2 year span of 1983-1984 facing Lendl was any more "past his prime" then Agassi was in late 2003-late 2005 facing Federer. If you wanted I could bring up other reasons why I believe this. However Connors fared much better vs Lendl those 2 years then Agassi did vs Federer. Of course Federer might be better then Lendl, but I am looking for examples to how they did agaisnt another great baseliners at a similar point in their career. That is 1 for me. So I am not discounting all periods Connors was old like you say, but periods he was at a comparable point in his career relative to his prime to where Agassi was.
     
    #44
  45. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
     
    #45
  46. noeledmonds

    noeledmonds Professional

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2006
    Messages:
    920
    You cant just compare players against their own style. They have to be able to play others style to. Agassi did no better against Sampras than Connors against Mcenroe. I would just argue that Sampras was better than Mcenroe. I wont go into all the reasons why now, but I will some other time if you want. Anyway i am off now, and I look forward to some brilliant response for more debate when I return.
     
    #46
  47. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    Actually, Agassi is 2-0 against Sampras at the Australian.
     
    #47
  48. vitasGremembered

    vitasGremembered New User

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2004
    Messages:
    69
    I've had the privilege of watching both in their primes, well actually nearly their entire careers.

    Agassi would like beat Connors simply because athletes now are better conditioned and physically stronger.

    But in terms of how they ranked relative to their peers? Connors hands down. Connors absolutely dominated from his start, early '70s, end of the Aussies (Laver, Newcombe) to the late 70's when Borg and McEnroe came on. Even after Borg and McEnroe, Connors continued to win major titles at the US Open and Wimbledon. Remember, back then, the Aussie was not as prestigious as it is today. The Masters paid more and you did not have to fly Down Under. Plus the French Open was a tad bit less prestigious too. Connors and Evert brought huge $$$ to tennis in the '70s. Connors' ability to sustain his peak years was amazing.

    Agassi has won a career Grand Slam, which is amazing. But he only had a couple of real peak years, none of which where he won more than one major. He never dominated, not once, like Connors did for his 7-8 year span.
     
    #48
  49. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2006
    Messages:
    2,495
    yeah, imagine if sampras was still around, giving as good as he got to fed and co, even winning grandslams, that was connors.
     
    #49
  50. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    I think you better go back and check your math. Agassi in 1999 won the French, made it to the finals of Wimbledon, and then won the US Open. Additionally, won the Australian in 2000.
     
    #50

Share This Page