Right, but the skill level of a 3.0 mirrors the put-away-ability of a 3.0. Everything scales. You cant imagine a 3.0 "put-away" being run down by a 4.5 or a 4.5 "smacking a ball" past a 3.0. You have to assume that everything is reasonably scaled. You also have to consider that a 3.0 1 ft. off the net vs. a 4.0 at the baseline is a favorable circumstance for a 3.0. As long as the 3.0 isnt drinking beer instead of water, even a 3.0 can hit a winner off a 4.0 groundstroke when the 3.0 is that close to the net and the 4.0 is that far back. There is a certain minimum standard of play for every NTRP level. For example: you are not going to ever see a 5.0 who has no backhand. The backhand may not be his best shot, but you are not going to ever be a 5.0 if you cant survive a simple backhand to backhand exchange. 4.5 is the level at which you can no longer cheese your way to victory. Moonballing for 10 years straight in 3.5 can help you be bumped to 4.0. You are not going to have a great time in 4.0 doing that and you're certainly not going to get to 4.5 no matter how hard or long you try. I'm not claiming that every 4.5 should have a serve and volley game. I'm claiming that no 4.5 on the planet is going to struggle with easy floaters at the net and the statement "I play with 4.5's who can hit volleys to save their life" is just not realistic. You can get away with a lot of cheese from 3.0-4.0 but thats where it ends.