Could rod laver beat a 5.0 now?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by ttwarrior1, Jan 31, 2012.

  1. ttwarrior1

    ttwarrior1 Professional

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    since i know guys in there 60s' and 70's now that are 5.0's, i assume he could

    What ranking would jimmy conners, borg,, etc be ?
     
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  2. kimbahpnam

    kimbahpnam Hall of Fame

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    i'll take a stab and say no
     
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  3. rofl_copter3

    rofl_copter3 Professional

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    No, a true 5.0 would be too fast and most likely too powerful... besides the game is so much different than when he played...
     
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  4. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    Maybe, maybe not. I don't really know how well he has recovered from his stroke. He looked pretty good at the Aussie Open trophy ceremony, though.
    The ability to hit the ball doesn't go away as you age, injuries and other health problems get in the way.
    I play #1 singles on my 4.0 team and have a winning record. When I went out to visit a couple months ago and played against my dad, who is 84 years old, he beat me.
     
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  5. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    sorry if i sidetrack your thread:)
    does anybody know whether Laver still plays tennis after his stroke?
     
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  6. kimbahpnam

    kimbahpnam Hall of Fame

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    the failure seems to be your understanding of the difference between 4.0 and 5.0
     
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  7. 0d1n

    0d1n Hall of Fame

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    And another failure might be your understanding of the difference between "his 84 years old dad" who may have been a great tennis player for all we know...and Rod Laver ... who is DEFINITELY one of the all time greats.
    The difference between 4.0 and 5.0 is very much one that can be overcome with some practice, the difference between your average "old but good" tennis player and Rod Laver cannot be calculated in "practice" and "workouts". It is a totally different order of magnitude.
     
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  8. PrinceMoron

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    If it was the first time you ever played him, you would be pretty nervous, which would not help. I could imagine being star struck and getting jelly legs and arms. Of course there would be lots of people watching so that would add to the pressure for you.

    Every 5.0 has a weakness and Laver would spot yours in 30 secs so you might get found out and made to look pretty stupid quickly.

    I play doubles occasionally with a guy with one leg who is still surprisingly effective, and I don't imagine a stroke being as limiting as that.

    If Laver were playing doubles, which is what one would expect, then a 5.0 might be the worst player on the court.

    I played Kitty Godfrey and she must have been in her 80s. I was glad she did not make everyone play with a racket from the 30s or we might have been in big trouble.
     
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  9. JoelDali

    JoelDali G.O.A.T.

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    Would Laver use lead tape or tourna grip? How can we ask Rod these questions and get answers?
     
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  10. wings56

    wings56 Professional

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  11. adidasman

    adidasman Professional

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    Movement is the challenge for Laver; he had a hip replaced back in 1995 or thereabouts. When I last saw him play up close in 2000, he still hit the ball incredibly cleanly, but he couldn't move terribly well. I'd guess he'd have a tough time beating a 5.0 player at this point, but only because his lack of mobility would be easily exploited. (Oh, and he definitely used lead tape back then. Quite a bit of it. No TournaGrip, though.)
     
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  12. Rjtennis

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    I would say there is no way he beats a 5.0 singles tournament player.
     
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  13. robow7

    robow7 Professional

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    I know I've told this story before but a friend of mine who played the satellites for a short time got a chance to hit with Laver about 12 or 13 years ago and the Rocket aced him out wide with a hard slice in the add court. My friend yelled out to him that no way could he do that again, and so Laver again served and put the ball right on the side line again in what he swore was the same exact ball spot for a second ace. Then my buddy told Rod if he could hit that same ball mark again for the third time that he would quit the game. According to my friend, Laver just missed that ball mark on the third serve by only a few inches. Laver laughingly told him the only reason he didn't hit that same ball mark again was that he didn't want to see him give up the game. :)
     
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  14. NJ1

    NJ1 Professional

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    No, I don't think he would based primarily on physicality....but he would have the top 10 shots on the highlight reel. And it would be the highlight of mine or any other such player's tennis "career" to be hitting balls with Rod Laver.
     
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  15. volleygirl

    volleygirl Semi-Pro

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    The better question would be, if a 5.0 player today played Laver, and both had to use wooden racquets, would the 5.0 player even win a game?
     
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  16. NJ1

    NJ1 Professional

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    Ha, that is a good question:)
     
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  17. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Are you Fred Chopin is disguise?

    It has already been established, after much debate that Laver would beat career-high world no. 17 (thus, by definition: 7.0) Fabrice Santoro, thus he would easily beat a 5.0 player.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2012
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  18. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Great story. That sounds just like Laver.

    He is the nicest, most generous, humblest guy you could ever meet. (It is just the way he was brought up.)
     
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  19. Avles

    Avles Hall of Fame

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    OP is talking about 2012 Laver against current 5.0 player.
     
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  20. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    True. And the even bigger difference is being 73 like Laver and being 84 years old. That's a lot bigger difference than 62 and 73. How well someone plays at that age is going to be on a case-by-case basis depending upon how someone has held up physically. My example was to show that guys Laver's age can still hit the ball as well as ever.

    By the way, I was an open-level player when I was younger and played 5.0 and 4.5 on my way down to 4.0. I haven't held up as well as my dad, but I certainly know the difference between 5.0 and 4.0 better than about anyone around.
     
    Last edited: Feb 1, 2012
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  21. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    The year Graf was inducted into the ITHOF, Agassi/Laver played McEnroe/Roche on grass. While Agassi and McEnroe were being nice, when McEnroe hit the ball to Laver, i.e. Laver didn't have to move much, the ball came back. At one point, Agassi drilled 3 or 4 balls to Roche at net. Roche played them all right back to Agassi. Laver, knowing Roche's game, offered Agassi some advice quite loudly "Not to his backhand" to which Agassi replied "I know, I'm trying!".

    Laver was wearing a pretty substantial knee brace, but still when serving or the ball was directed to him, he acquitted himself very well. To NLBwell's point, Roche has been blessed with a better physique at their age and really moved and performed very well.

    The better question may be if a 5.0 could stand up to Tony Roche on grass for one set. I wouldn't bet on the 5.0. :)

    And, I'm an old demoted 5.0 an a pretty good 4.5. I've been on court with Owen Davidson and Ross "Snake" Case. There's no way a 5.0 could take a set off either of them, at least the ones I've played with. I've also been on court with Gene Mayer and a 5.0 would stand even less of a chance with him.
     
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  22. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    In the ESPN interview with Fed present, he was constantly massaging his left shoulder with his right hand.
     
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  23. JoelDali

    JoelDali G.O.A.T.

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    The depth and speed (125mph) of the Laver slice with a modern frame is undeniable. We saw him hitting at Indian Wells. He would school any TT member 5.0 and above without question.
     
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  24. adidasman

    adidasman Professional

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    I've done it. Twice. :)
     
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  25. adidasman

    adidasman Professional

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    Because it's much more difficult to massage your left shoulder with your left hand. ;)
     
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  26. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Hitting, no contest, Laver is still 6.0.
    Running, another story.
    Health, that's the issue.
    He might bagel a 5.0 twice, but he won't run or hit the following week.
     
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  27. Bhagi Katbamna

    Bhagi Katbamna Hall of Fame

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    Laver's had a stroke.
     
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  28. dennis10is

    dennis10is Banned

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    Laver would lose to a 3.5 who has read the instruction posts on TW.

    Have you looked into the minds of the 3.5 posters here, and see what they see of themselves.

    Why, a recently promoted 4.0 said that nobody can beat him if all they can do is slice on the bh side. So, a TW 4.0 can beat Rosewall in his prime, I can't imagine what a Laver 40 years past his prime and with a stroke would stand no chance against a 4.0 hence I believe the 3.5 should be able to beat a current Laver easily.
     
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  29. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    D, if you'd taken the time to read the post 27, you'd retract your flippant post.
     
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  30. dennis10is

    dennis10is Banned

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    I know he has had a stroke. I mentioned it in my post. I'm just deducing based on claims of other posters here. Self made claims of abilities are the life blood of TW is it not?
     
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  31. LeeD

    LeeD Bionic Poster

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    Everything depends on how well the x pro has aged.
    I played ArtLarsen and GeorgePonticoff at least 30 times, mostly doubles but some singles, when they were 55. 1976.
    They had not aged well, and I beat them most points, and every set, by the following year. I was a winning C level player.
    Now there's a thread of some 60 year old winning ONE match vs a 5.5 player. OK, give him props. ONCE. Next match, college player ran old man, easy 2 and 2.
    A dumb 5.0 would try to hit with Laver. That guarantees a bad loss.
    A smart 5.0 would drop shot and lob, RUN the old man, at least for the first 30 minutes. That takes the fun from old fart, he's winded, and will just excuse himself from the beating.
     
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  32. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    According to Laver in the latest Tennis Channel special on him, the stroke affected his right side. He said that was sort of a blessing in that he could still hit tennis balls.
     
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  33. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Or right shoulder with right hand.
     
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  34. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    In your dreams.

    Laver's a lot smarter than to fall for that.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2012
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  35. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    ---Not now...may be 2-3 years ago yeas, but he had a stroke recently...
     
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  36. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    yes, he had a stroke, we´ve established that. see above posts
    but does anybody know whether he still plays nowadays?
     
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  37. chatt_town

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    damn...are you serious? How old are you?

     
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  38. PrinceMoron

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    Sounds like a new thread coming up, who is the oldest player you have ever lost to... 84 will take some beating.
     
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  39. adidasman

    adidasman Professional

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    The stroke was in 1998. A bit more than two or three years ago.
     
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  40. adidasman

    adidasman Professional

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    I don't think Rocket would be too keen on using a wood racquet these days; it's been probably 30 years since he's used one regularly. The left arm is not the monstrosity it once was, that's for sure. Still...I'd put my money on Laver in that scenario.
     
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  41. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    Last edited: Feb 2, 2012
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  42. adidasman

    adidasman Professional

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    #42
  43. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    #43
  44. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter Legend

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    Thanks! I've read that before. I'm glad to see Mr. Laver has fully recovered from his stroke. About his wrist and hip, I wonder if he would consider stem cell therapy! It would be interesting to see the man play in his mid 70's with healthy joints. Look out Champions Tour! Hahaha!
     
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  45. treblings

    treblings Hall of Fame

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    it would be great to see him play at the ITF World Super Seniors championships. the level of play is extremely high though in the 70+ age group
     
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  46. ttwarrior1

    ttwarrior1 Professional

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    would love him to play net as my partner
     
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  47. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Just read the story. I love the part where Laver said he would do a lot of unconventional things now if he was playing today. Drop shots, lobs, rushing the net. One thing Laver had and I don't think anyone could deny that was great imagination on the court.
     
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  48. scotus

    scotus Legend

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    What do Laver and Sampras have in common besides being the GOAT candidates?

    Both wield Babolat sticks.
     
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  49. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Actually they have a lot in common. Sampras admitted he based a lot of his game on Rod Laver. Sampras had a two handed backhand until his coach suggested he switch to a one handed I believe to play more like Laver. I'm not sure if that was the only reason for the switch but I think it was one of them.
     
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  50. robow7

    robow7 Professional

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    My coach did the same thing to me, wanted to see me hit the one hander like Rosewall....Yea, good luck with that one. Worst mistake I ever made was trying to do what those two could do with a ball.
     
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