Back when the sport favored the brave

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Lsmkenpo, Jun 15, 2011.

  1. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Here is a taste of how the game was meant to be played for all you youngsters who don't know any better and have only been watching tennis during the slowest era in the history of the sport.

    Safin vs Philippoussis Paris TMS Final 2000 on indoor carpet

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SKSzTGoZM3o

    The match has everything, #1 rank on the line, players getting tagged with serves in the chest, points earned by hitting winners:idea:, net play, Safin diving on the carpet, bloody faces. No damn toweling off after every point, if your face is bleeding than you towel off, stepping up to the line and playing like a man.

    This is how points are constructed when you are trying to hit winners, not pushing the ball around the court 20-30 strokes.

    It's a shame the sport has been emasculated with the proliferation of slow courts.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2011
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  2. gold soundz

    gold soundz Professional

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    First of all, those are highlights so you're not seeing the full picture. Secondly, they look like they're rallying the ball quite slowly. Sure, they can hit the odd fast shot which wont be an unforced error, but who can't. Rallies in tennis now look faster to me than that anyway. And thirdly, the thing about pro tennis today and the top players is that the defense is by far at its best, the footwork, etc.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2011
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  3. Sentinel

    Sentinel Talk Tennis Guru

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    Thanks for the clip. I notice someone immediately rated your thread Terrible, lol.
    Some people obviously like emasculation !
     
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  4. Kaz00

    Kaz00 Semi-Pro

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    Thanks for the clip! I love the way the court sounds!
     
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  5. Antonio Puente

    Antonio Puente Hall of Fame

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    It's amazing how much more flat-footed the tennis looked just a decade ago - not only this match, but virtually anything you see from this time period. It's not like watching a 70's match where they barely moved at all, but the footwork does pale in comparison to what you see from the top players today.
     
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  6. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Highlights or not, you see more offense in 5 sets this match than an entire day of highlights from a slow court tournament now.

    The only reason defense is better now is because the courts have been slowed, there is a reason the great defensive player Nadal avoids this particular Masters 1000.
    You know why, because it is the only tournament the entire year that favors offense over defense.

    The only major tournament left on tour with a fast court pace rating.
     
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  7. GOAT BAAH!!!

    GOAT BAAH!!! Professional

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  8. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Is that right, ever hear of a player named Michael Chang?

    Watch this and get back to me.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P6Yf1ZsWRQQ
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2011
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  9. Timbo's hopeless slice

    Timbo's hopeless slice Hall of Fame

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    how can anyone watch that and call them 'flat footed'??

    you have got to be kidding me!!!!!

    (the first one, I meant, I don't need to watch Chang to know how brilliant he was)
     
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  10. namelessone

    namelessone Legend

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    Really? Not because it's the last masters of the year and is treated like the stepchild of the MS series by top players?

    Cincy is pretty damn fast and I've rarely seen Nadal skip it.

    BTW, great offensive player Roger federer didn't enter in Paris MS in 2004-2006, withdrew with back injury in 2008 QF and didn't even make semifinals in this event until 2011(where he lost to freaking Monfils). Are we to conclude that Fed is scared of the fastcourts in Paris :) ?

    Or if you want to take another player, take Djoker.

    His results there are, since 2007:

    2R,3R,W,3R.

    Is Djoko a bad fastcourt player?

    Murray doesn't even have a SF in Paris out of like 4 participations.

    Heck, Nadal has a final here. NADAL. And had he not played against a bad matchup while not being that good on HC he might have won the fastest tourney on tour. I hope the joke is not lost on you.
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2011
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  11. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Not to mention they were both physically two of the biggest players on tour at the time.
     
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  12. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Federer is a great fast court player, Nadal isn't too great on fast court.

    Cincy is the tune up to the US Open, Nadal nor any other top player is going to skip it for that reason.

    I guarantee if Bercy was a clay event, Nadal would have his ass there every year.
     
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  13. namelessone

    namelessone Legend

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    The surface doesn't matter all that much. It's the fact that it's already late in the season and most players JUST DON'T CARE at this point.

    Roger Federer skipped this event three times in his prime. THREE TIMES. And his best result ON THE FASTEST SURFACE ON TOUR is SF in 2010.

    Novak Djokovic had one win here in 2009 but in the other three participations he didn't make it past third round.

    Nadal doesn't have a great record there but he made a FINAL in 2007, losing to a great Nalbandian that year.

    Murray didn't even make SF from 4 participations.

    Out of the top 5 players, the only ones that have won or made finals in Paris(FASTEST SURFACE AROUND, amirite?), are Soderling,Novak and Nadal.
     
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  14. Lsmkenpo

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    Not a bad fast court player but also not great, his best surface is slow HC, like Nadal his best weapon is his movement.

    There are different ways to win on surfaces but the best way usually wins more consistently in the end, kind of like Soderling winning on clay playing offensive tennis.
     
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  15. Antonio Puente

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    Compared to a Djokovic/Nadal match from today, they appear as if they are wearing cement shoes.

    In watching a clay match from a decade ago, you see the same disparity. You simply have better athletes today, with significantly better footwork and movement.

    Sure, he was the cricketer from Somerset.
     
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  16. Lsmkenpo

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    Michael Chang was a better mover than anyone currently playing the game, including Nadal and Djokovic right now.
     
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  17. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    Chang is not a better mover than Nadal. On hard courts they are equal and on clay and grass Nadal is far superior. Federer and Djokovic move better than Chang on natural surfaces in fact.
     
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  18. Lsmkenpo

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    I think Chang was faster than Nadal, I don't think Djokovic is that great of a mover on natural surfaces he is best on HC.
     
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  19. Antonio Puente

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    Simply for argument's sake, I'll accept that assertion and play along. Even if that were true, what would it prove? Would it prove the average player from that era was a better mover than the average player from this era? You would have to be blind to believe such a thing. Chang was the exception. That said, Chang wasn't Nadal or Djokovic. When any former player - McEnroe, Agassi, Sampras - is asked about the differences in the game today, they point to movement and footwork. Just recently, Sampras pointed to that reason as to why American players are falling behind. It's fairly obvious and common sense stuff.
     
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  20. Lsmkenpo

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    You are discounting the fact that the game has been slowed down, if the game is slowed defense takes precedent over offense and of course movement becomes an even bigger weapon. Shot making has taken a backseat to movement and stamina in about 80% of the tournaments played now. Its fairly obvious and common sense stuff.
     
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  21. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    Eh,the year Nadal made the final Paris switched to slow HC,Nalbandian himself said before the F with Nadal that Madrid played quicker that year.Before 2007 Paris was played on carpet,then switched to slow HC and last year they seem to have sped it up again.
     
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  22. Antonio Puente

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    But again, you see the same disparity in movement on clay courts from a decade ago. The players of today are simply better athletes with significantly better footwork and movement.
     
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  23. Fed Kennedy

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  24. namelessone

    namelessone Legend

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    It can't be a fastcourt. Nadal won on it the next year. :)
     
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  25. Fed Kennedy

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    Nadal is the GOAT of all surfaces
     
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  26. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Also back when big, macho, hunky, real men played with racquets no bigger than 90 sq. in. :)
     
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  27. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    We have 3 or 4 of the best movers the sport has ever seen at the top right now, take away those and the disparity is not nearly as evident as it would seem across the field now to ten years ago. There have been great movers in every era, Borg and Chang are right there with the players of today.
     
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  28. Fed Kennedy

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    if you can move and play offense, you are a macho man.
    [​IMG]
     
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  29. Cesc Fabregas

    Cesc Fabregas Legend

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    Nadal hit a backhand, forehand and service winner 0-40 down in the 4th set against Federer, obviously not brave enough for the OP.
     
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  30. Fed Kennedy

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    court was too slow, clay is for pansies who like running

    [​IMG]
     
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  31. Lsmkenpo

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    Nadal hit 3 winners in a row? :shock: That somehow proves the game hasn't been slowed?
     
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  32. JustBob

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    True, but you are wasting your time with the OP, who will simply refuse to acknowledge that today's players are much better athletes than they were in previous eras despite mountains of evidence to the contrary (including the ever increasing ratio of time spent on physical training vs technique in player development programs in the past 20 years or so). I'm surprised he hasn't yet brought up irrelevant comparisons to other sports...
     
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  33. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

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    Oh, and also back when real men weren't afraid to serve and volley, return and volley, and just come to the net whenever they damn felt like it without being forced to by a drop shot!
     
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  34. Sentinel

    Sentinel Talk Tennis Guru

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    ! So what if today's players are more athletic ? All that running is required to grind out each point, no ? !
     
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  35. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    There is a good book called On the Origin of Tennis Species in this book it is explained how tennis players evolved and adapted to the speed of the tennis courts in their eras.

    The author had a theory that as court pace decreased players started to eschew net play, grew bigger racquets, an affinity to frequently toweling off, increased movement skills, decreased language skills, and allergic reactions to gluten.

    Unfortunately the author is denounced by certain extremists who refuse to accept his theory.
     
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  36. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Yes, clearly the USTA player development program is churning out some incredible tennis players, much better now than 10 years ago in skill and athletic ability. They make Sampras and Agassi look like a couple of hacks down at the local parks. :)
     
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  37. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    Who is better,peak Fish or peak Sampras? I mean Pete may have had a bit more explosive first step but overall it's too hard to call,the game has evolved so much.
     
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  38. SoBad

    SoBad Legend

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    Tennis has steadily declined since inception. A hundred years ago guys used to hit the ball real hard, and now it's just about who's gonna outmoonball who - Nadal or Djokovic. Moonball groundies, moonball serves, moonball volleys, tennis is finished.
     
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  39. Lsmkenpo

    Lsmkenpo Hall of Fame

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    Tough call, but I have heard they are developing a young African- American player named Donald Young with hands as good as McEnroe's and superior athletic skills from the increased physical training regimens now in place.
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2011
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  40. Lsmkenpo

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    Yep, a hundred years ago they were tougher, men wore full length pants and a long sleeve shirt and never even thought of toweling off between points.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
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  41. 14OuncesStrung

    14OuncesStrung Rookie

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    Thank you so much for the video. We need to bring back the carpet.
    Hardcourts are bad for your health...
     
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  42. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    Love the failed tweener :)

    also, Philipousis (sp?) has a real slice. Not the floater you see Nadal swinging around.
     
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  43. salsainglesa

    salsainglesa Semi-Pro

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    and philli***** serves like a sissy
     
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  44. junk

    junk Rookie

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  45. fed_rulz

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    1. no they don't.
    2. says who?
    3. where's the defense that you see today?
     
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  46. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    You're right. They look more skilled...

    Bill Tilden, Jack Kramer, I'm guessing, would say that.

    Look up a dude named Michael Chang if you want good defense.

    and here's some good play, far better than what is on now:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPsu-zL2Ah0&feature=player_detailpage#t=277s

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPsu-zL2Ah0&feature=player_detailpage#t=469s

    have you watched them before?
     
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2011
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  47. fed_rulz

    fed_rulz Hall of Fame

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    that's not what he asked.

    Kramer thinks Federer plays the best tennis ever. And Federer has been branded a "baseliner" by pretty much everyone endorsing nostalgiatennis. Do you see a contradiction here? The type of tennis one is supposed play is whatever that works; not what an armchair expert thinks should be the norm.

    Chang is good, but not nearly as good as the top guys today. And thanks asking (condescendingly), I've watched this match and these guys before. While it is good, I've seen much better ones in this decade.
     
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  48. Manus Domini

    Manus Domini Hall of Fame

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    what who asked?


    Fed's currently trying to get to net ASAP

    So they aren't defenders. As good as the defense is, so long as the field is one-style-fits-all, it isn't as interesting as it used to be.
     
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  49. fed_rulz

    fed_rulz Hall of Fame

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    i suggest you understand the context before butting in to reply to my posts. go read the post i responded to.


    Kramer made the comment a few years ago.

    good, you can stop watching tennis and spare us the nostalgic BS, because there are lot of us who find this brand of tennis wayyy more interesting than the servefests of the 90s.
     
    #49
  50. junk

    junk Rookie

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    1. you are right that guys like monfils and verdasco are better athletes - the only problem they can't play tennis
    2. say a lot of people who miss all court tennis not just baseline bashing
    3. it's been discussed many times that on slower courts it does look like the defence is better today but would love to see the same defenders/retrievers on the fast courts like the one in 1996 masters final
     
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