Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by darthpwner, Oct 26, 2009.
In your opinion who had the best overall game of these 3? I say Stich
I'd agree, though this is a very tough call and an excellent question as they all have similar credentials. Stick was definitely the smoothest of the lot and had no real weaknesses. When he was on, like in the Wimbledon final against Becker, he seemed unbeatable.
That said, I think Ivanisevic and Krajicek had better serves. Stick's was still great, obviously, but I'd say Ivanisevic and Krajicek may be in the top 5 servers of all time. Stick is a bit outside of that.
Krajicek may have been a tad better at the net, but it's hard to say. Ivanisevic volleyed just okay. Krajicek's return wasn't too great, nor was his backhand.
So I see the other two as having more semi-weaknesses. Of course, this doesn't take the mental game into account.
The real shame is that we lost all these players too soon, especially Stick and Krajicek. Thought I'd see Stick battling Sampras for many majors, but it never happened. Damn injuries!!
Definitely Stich, Ivanisevic, and Krajicek in that order. All 3 had pretty good overall games though. I am not saying Stich was neccessarily the best of the 3 but his game was most balanced. His serve while excellent was clearly behind the other 3 which actually made it easier to have the most rounded game in a way, as the other 2 have the tough task of living up to the incredible standards of their serve in other areas.
Stich. He was not the best in everything of the 3 but his game was definitely more well rounded and he seemed able to adapt to all the surfaces a little more comfortably than the others could. Goran may have been the most explosive of the three when on his game, but Stich was more consistantly on his game than the others I think.
stich,krajicek and goran in that order
Stich probably did have the most well rounded game. Having said that, Krajicek got to his A game the most consistently of the 3 (discounting injuries), he was also the most mentally strong by far.
Goran, was the least consistent, but had the single biggest weapon, and, was the best athlete, particularly in terms of movement. Stich was great in that department for such a big man as well, but not as much of a sheer jock as Goran. Krajicek was a touch heavy-footed.
Sampras mentioned that Stich was a player he feared. I don't have his book in front of me now but I got the impression he feared Stich more than anyone because he felt Stich had no weaknesses.
Overall Stich was so good in everything but as people have written, Goran had one of the greatest weapons in the history of tennis in his awesome serve so who is to say. Of the three I think it's a no brainer that Goran had the best serve.
Krajicek was also an excellent overall player and all of them had super serves.
I believe Sampras said Stich was the most talented player he ever played against.
Though call b/t the serves of Ivanisevic and Krajicek. Ivanisevic definitely got a lot of press and had that fear factor. He deserved both. To me, his serve was like a McEnroe with a tiny tad less spin, but maxing out at around 135mph instead of Mac's 105mph. Now that's scary.
But Krajicek also had amazing direction and power. Anyone who saw him against Kafelnikov at the US Open will attest to that. He hit something like 50 aces and there was some crazy stat about how only a few of the 1st serves Krajicek got in play weren't aces. Keep in mind, Kafelnikov was a big man at 6'3" with a long reach and was not easy to ace.
To me discussing who had a better serve b/t Ivanisevic and Krajicek is kinda like trying to analyze whether the USSR or USA had better nuclear missiles in the '80's. Both countries had more than enough firepower to destroy the others. It becomes more of a discussion on over reliance on this power and what other flaws these countries (or tennis players) have.
The best player in that group is Stich. But when they're on, Krajicek and Goran I think had more firepower to blow anyone away.
Ivanisevic comes last in the list when it comes to who had better games. And as much as Pete waxed about how "scary" Goran was to be matched up against, he feared Stich and Krajicek more in general.
I remember in 1998 when Goran and Krajicek had that titanic semi at Wimbledon. Pete must've loved the result of that one. Had Krajicek won (and he was playing very well at the time), I would've liked his chances of taking out Pete in the final.
For me this is a no brainer: Stich had the best game of the three mentioned.
He was truly an all courter, all surface player.
Much more versatile than the other two IMO.
They were all effective on all surfaces. All won titles on indoors, grass, clay and hardcourt. All advanced to quarters and semis at every slam, often multiple times. One could argue Stich as more versatile, but I think it is unclear. Again, they all were dangerous on all surfaces.
Titles by Surface:Ivanisevic
Titles by Surface: Stich
Titles by surface: Krajicek
Pretty decent mix from all. Factor in runner-up finishes and doubles titles, and it becomes even more diverse. I do not believe anyone should say Stich was "far more" versatile.
Isn't the skew for goran on carpet indication enough ? Only 3 HC titles ?? Both master series won on carpet (none on hard) ?
Stich reached the SF of every slam atleast once, krajicek all except the USO where he had 3 QF appearences.
Goran couldn't even make it past the quarters at the AO and at RG , apart from his lone SF appearence at the USO, he didn't do much there either.
Stich and krajicek are close in terms of surface-versatility ( krajicek is perhaps a tad under-rated here ) , both clearly better than goran ...
Excellent points. I would call Stich the most consistent/mentally tough but he just didn't seem to care as much about tennis as the rest of the top 5. He had other interests and it wasn't all-consuming for him. IMHO, Krajicek just didn't have the killer instinct/work ethic of the top players. Maybe he didn't care as much, either. Goran was supposed to be much better. I can remember a Tennis Mag story on him when he was 17 or 18yo and supposed to be the next big thing. Such a head case but an interesing guy and my fave player ever. Goran really should have won 3 Wimbledon titles and this wouldn't even be an argument. He was like magnesium...burns hot and fast but gone in an instant.
Although my favorite of the 3 is Goran, I will take Stich as the best of the 3 for 'Best Overall Game'.
Goran was probably the most charismatic and loved of the three players but probably stich was the best out of the three due to his consistency on other surfaces also ...
Agreed. Stich best player on all surfaces and well rounded game. Pete agreed with your assessment in his book. On grass, though, no question Goran, head and shoulders better, based on his serve. Krajicek not as consistent in results.
All three won Wimbledon.
Stich made it to Grand Slam finals on all 3 surfaces and could win at the net and baseline. He was an all-courter.
Grass: Stich won Wimbledon in 1991, beating Edberg in the semis and Becker in the finals. (By the way, In 1992, he won Wimbledon doubles with McEnroe.)
Hard Courts: He lost in the US Open finals to Agassi in 1994.
Clay: He lost in the 1996 French Open final to Kafenikov.
Goran won Wimbledon in 2001 and lost to Pete in the final 3 times. He reached the Australian and French quarters several times each.
Krajicek won Wimbledon in 1996, made it to the semis at Australia (1992), the semis of the French (1993) and reached the quarters of the US Open several times.
On a given day, any of these guys could beat anyone in the world.
Goran was the most successful, but not by much. Having said that, Stich might have been the most well rounded. However if I had to pick one of them to play for me for one match, I'd pick Goran provided he was not having a mental infarction that day.:mrgreen:
Overall, I would take Stich's game. So I guess the German wins.
Goran won as many titles as Stich on clay. Won only 2 less on hard court (sorry, I have NO INTEREST in the marketing "masters" series gimmick, and I'm always amazed at the penetration ATP marketing has made on younger people here). Just because he won an overwhelming number of titles on carpet that the other 2 did not, does not take away from his accomplishments on other surfaces. I do not fathom the logic of calling a person less versatile who has a comparable record on other surfaces (perhaps slightly less), and much greater on one other. I think the rational interpretation is that he was NEARLY as good as Stich on the other surfaces and much better on carpet. (I am not saying that is necessarily the case, these stats cannot be read into too much, but THAT would be a logical interpretation, not one that penalizes Goran for doing exceptionally well on carpet)
Wow, SF's.....Goran only made the quarters...obviously "MUCH" more versatile right? Incidently, funny and ironic that you defend Krajicek for making 3 QF's at the USO, then in the next sentence criticize Goran for not making it past the quarters of the AO and RG. Which he did THREE TIMES at AO and RG.
Again, I think it's not clear. Anyone who wants to say Goran is less versatile, can do so, but saying "much" as the OP did, or "clearly" as you do, invalidates your opinions in my view.
Thanks, I think Stich and Goran had the biggest mental flakiness. Stich had a very hot temper, which I think did not help him. He tended to get very cranky and snipey when in a losing battle. I thought Krajicek was the most even-keeled of the 3, maybe he did lack some killer instinct, certainly, injuries hurt his career, especially later on. He also didn't have the footspeed/agility of the other 2.
Goran was indeed touted as possibly the next big thing, and there was reason to think so, as a teen, he already had shown some big results and the killer A game. Even in those days, it was noted that he could play on clay and had good groundstrokes and movement. In fact, many experts felt that what he needed was to round out his net game! In any case, b/c of his relationship to Wimbledon, I think people don't realize he made the FO quarters 3 times, won titles on clay, and was runner-up in FO doubles twice. In fact, I think all 3 often get erroneously branded as fast-court only players. The truth is, they were all good, huge-man, all-courters with big weapons, you didn't want to play them on any surface.
I didn't say much. Are you blind?
yeah, because winning a master series against a deep field on a surface is the same as winning a small title on the same surface with not much competition :roll:
perhaps slightly less ??
Only 3 HC titles for goran - ( none of them big) - inspite of stich having a shorter career and krajicek being affected more by injuries.
And as for clay - he could play on it, but wasn't as much a threat on it as the other 2 when they were 'hot'. Ditto with becker who didn't even win a single CC title ...
Which leaves grass and carpet - where goran was better ( peak levels being pretty comparable ) , but then the other 2 were great on grass and carpet as well
I stated the results for them on the non-grass surfaces wrt to semis . And these results - inspite of krajicek having his career affected much more by injuries than goran . So yes, am being more harsher on goran if you want to look at it that way .
Having watched them play, IMO it is pretty clear ...
The post you quoted from me #20, featured extensive quotes from the post I was directly replying to. WHY would you take your post, quote it, then cut out part of my post which, again, had direct quotes from ABMK to which I was replying, to make a weird Frankenstein post, then accuse me of being blind.
The question is: are you blind, stupid, or being purposely obtuse?
Look at my original post. Did I say "much?" I said nothing about Stich being much better than specifically Goran. I just felt he was the best of the 3
If I had to pick someone to play for me it would be either Goran or Stich, but if i didn't know the surface it would definitely be the latter. Goran was a phenomenal player on grass and slightly less so on carpet, but other than that he sort of lagged behind. Goran was a great player but I was always disappointed that he couldn't transcend from grass at GS level to the other surfaces. He had a big serve, good groundies and a lot of other raw elements that he could have succeeded so much more on other surfaces, and the only other surface he ever seemed to become completely comfortable on other than grass was Carpet. He could have on fire days on the other surfaces but he never seemed as fluid on them as he did when he took to the court of Wimbledon and was playing his best. Stich, though maybe not as explosive at his absolute best, could cover the surfaces better IMO, he certainly did not do some things as well as Goran did...but I think his game overall was slightly better.
AHA! Now I see, and I apologize. When I wrote that, "OP" was going to be directed at ABMK, but through various editing processes it ended up as that. My mistake. I am having a few problems with this pc right now. In fact, I wrote a rather lengthy, multiple quote rebuttal to ABMK's last post, right after I posted the last one to you, but it was completely lost, and I haven't the will to make another, considering his points use rather irrational, selective logic.
I never intended to imply that you were advocating the same argument. I realize you did not!
Apology accepted. Thanks for clarification.
i absolutely agree about these recently overhyped 'masters-series'...
goran's game on clay (especially in the 1st part of his career) is really underrated.
ok, no SF at RG, but 3 QF at RG (in 1992, he was the only one to take a set, in the QF, from the lumberjack courier) which is not so bad !
3 clay court titles (in 9 clay finals)
best perf. in some important clay tournaments: SF in monte-carlo, F in hamburg, F in rome (among 4 SF in rome !)
only player to have defeated the musterminator in davis cup on clay, in 5 sets in 1997 (in austria, of course !)
bronze medals (single & double) on clay at barcelona in 1992, including 4 straight 5-sets single wins to get his well-deserved medal !
clay wins over over RG winners of his era: muster, courier, chang, kafelnikov, bruguera
Stich for me. The only surprise was that he didn't win more.
I would say Stich's ground strokes would make him the best when talking about "overall game".
His volleying was on par if not better than Krajicek's and much better than Ivanisevic's.
His serve is probably marginally weaker than the other 2 guy's but it's nothing obvious like the difference in the ground game was.
I'd take Stich's game over the other 2...he was very much an underachiever in my book. Other life interests and some bad luck with injuries plus a bad temper probably held him back in overall results.
IMO put Becker's head on Stich's shoulders and you will have an all time great. Tough to do ... I know .
Stich was an amazing player and talent. He did not have enough desire to win as much as many others, he said so himself. He also said the way he played the year he won Wimbledon would have taken him far on the grass even today...
Stich. Probably because he was easily the best mover of the three.
And all these acccomplishments were not after a full career of trying hard. Injuries and his crazy personality, made him somewhat inconsistent on all surfaces! But he had a very underrated all-court game. He was a danger to anyone, anywhere.
I couldn't agree more. Again, I think because of his Wimbledon accomplishments, and his serve, people only remember him as a big serve/fast court player. In truth, he could and did play great on anything provided his body was healthy and his head on straight. When his head wasn't there, he couldn't play on anything! ;-)
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