Federer No. 1 — in all sports

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by DoubleDeuce, Jul 14, 2012.

  1. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Statistics in team sports are a very, very grey are which are significantly affected by the quality of your team-mates.

    Neither of those guys played in individual sport so there are no important metrics by which to fairly compare them to others at an individual level and which also equate exactly with the results of each match.

    For example: Jordan won X number of NBA titles. He missed many matches in those seasons through injury or whatever correct? Show me a tennis tournament where the winner sat out a match.

    Similarly, there are many matches in his career where other players scored more points in a match, yet where Jordan's team still won.

    Statistics can be used very sneakily to paint many pictures which is why the more complex a statistic is, the more likely it doesn't reflect the results. In tennis examples could be aces serves, breakpoints saved, forehand winners... none of them matter whatsoever compared to who won the match.

    Additionally - if winning an NBA title is the end-all of basketball achievement then Wimbledon is the end-all of tennis achievements. Few will find much fault in that. Federer has 7, Jordan has 6. Federer won 5 in a row, Jordan only 3 (twice). Federer achieved his 7 titles in 15 seasons, Jordan his 6 titles in 17 seasons (only counting the playing years).

    It's hard to compare like for like isn't it? You can bake things in many way but, ultimately, in neither tennis nor basketball - it never comes back to any particular head to head.

    Swimming is the most cockahoop kook sport there is in terms of single people racking up tons of achievements. They give out Olympic swimming medals like they are Tic Tacs. Phelps may have the most gold medals on his wall but to compare him to sportspeople like Jordan, Federer etc who had competitive fields and so few chances to compete for the highest achievement by comparison to swimming is a little convenient. A real comparison would see Olympic medals scaled in numbers (divided by four or five) to offer a more realistic comparison between sports and who the relative greats are. Even then it would be a hugely subjective process open to a myriad of lines of argument.

    If Federer does not fall into the category of dominating his rivals then neither do Jordan or Gretzky.

    Federer has dominated all of his rivals as a whole moreso than anyone else currently on tour or in modern history. He has bettered the entire tour more times than anyone in the history of the open era - and certainly more times than Nadal.

    Focussing on one particular head to head when that's not how any tennis rating system looks at it is partisan hack logic and nothing more.

    Here comes the excuse engine... :lol:

    Steffi Graf - end of story. Jo Durie had her number and yet Graf is, by miles, the more accomplished player.

    If I wanted to use the spurious non-logic used above I could then also say: Greg Norman. He was the best player on tour for a number of years... but could never win the achievement which makes a golfer truly great - the Masters. Is he less great than Larry Mize, Ian Woosnan or Ben Crenshaw?

    You can bake tennis however you want but the fact is no ranking system, tournament draw or the metrics by which players have historically been judged cares one iota about any individual head to heads. Why? Because they matter nothing compared to the achievements of winning tournaments.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  2. 90's Clay

    90's Clay Legend

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    What?? Graf has a 10-5 h2h over Seles.

    Rog is a mediocre 10-20 vs. Rafa
     
  3. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    I was presently googling to remember Jo Durie's name.

    The point with the tennis head to head brigade is they see a losing head to head against a great rival a massive dent in someone's armour, but see a losing head to head against low-ranked nobodies as being irrelevant. Go figure. :lol:... what is a worse blight on your resume: to lose to a great, or to lose to a nobody? It takes a special kind of intellect to argue that losing to a nobody is better.

    It's been said here many times before - if Federer had actually been a little worse on clay and lost more often in the semi-finals before he met Nadal he would have a better record against him - perhaps even a winning record.

    So, to recap: if Federer was worse on clay, he would appear to be a greater player according to Nadal h2h proponents.

    That is the level of intelligence you're dealing with here.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2013
  4. RF20Lennon

    RF20Lennon Legend

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    Yeah but see unlike Seles, Rafa didnt get stabbed :-?

    Also for the gazillionth time. H2H doesnt mean anything. Overall resume, brand ambassador (what your name carries) and overall persona does. Now im not saying Fed is the No 1. in all sports but just that his H2H with Nadal has no bearing.
     
  5. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    No because Jordan was 0-2 against Larry Bird and 1-3 against Isiah Thomas. Jerry Rice was 1-2 against Michael Irvin.

    Guess who is the #1 in his sport ?
     
  6. xan

    xan Professional

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    good for him. obviously you can't compare sports but, it's the bloody darts. it's more a game than a sport, just like calling poker a sport or some similar ****. I'm sorry if anyone finds it offensive, or if you have utmost respect for the guy (it's still crazy none the less to dominate anything to that extent he did), but it's a bloody darts fgs.
    I find it laughable to even compare it to a real sport. labels or not.

    it's every bit as laughable as calling Federer the greatest athlete of all times. absurd and ludicrous.
     
  7. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    #1 in all sports of all time --> Jim Thorpe.
     
  8. grandmaster

    grandmaster Rookie

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    Don Bradman
     
  9. Phoenix1983

    Phoenix1983 Hall of Fame

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    Darts should be considered a game, not a sport.

    As the old adage goes, if you can participate while smoking, it's not a sport.

    Look at Taylor's physique...he cannot qualify as a sportsman.
     
  10. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Similarly, if you can do it without even putting your beer down....
     
  11. 90's Clay

    90's Clay Legend

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    I don't know about that. We all know Nadal has enjoyed the CLEAR head to head on outdoor surfaces. Fed is only what 8-7 vs. Rafa off of clay or something? (With MOST Of those wins coming indoors). Lucky for Roger he didn't play Nadal more at the slams off of clay.. I think it would take a FOOL to believe Roger would ever end up with a h2h advantage over Rafa. Especially if Fed played Rafa more in non clay slam events post 2007

    But I know how Federer fans are when it comes to this topic. They want to totally erase this thought out of their subconscious like a wet fart
     
  12. phnx90

    phnx90 Hall of Fame

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    Impressive stuff
     
  13. Steffi-forever

    Steffi-forever Semi-Pro

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    Graf never had a losing head-to-head & Seles, unlike Fed who lost his very first match & Nadal at Miami on hardcourt in 2004 (Rafe was 17, Fed was in one of his best year).

    FOR THE RECORD,
    when Graf was n°1, Graf was 3-2 & Seles;
    when Seles was n°1, Graf was 3-2 & Seles;
    when both were co-n°1, Graf was 2-0;
    and when both were past their prime at the end of the 90's, Graf was 2-1.

    The only surfaces that Seles has beating Graf were the red clay and rebound ace. Graf has beating Seles on clay, decoturf, grass, medium hardcourt (San Antonio) and carpet. It was 6-4 before the stabbing but 6 of those 10 matches has been played on slow surfaces, Seles' best.

    You could read my signature too if you want. :razz:
     
  14. Steffi-forever

    Steffi-forever Semi-Pro

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    Come on now, Graf had not even won a title yet when she was facing Durie! What a joke!

    Graf is the only female player to not have a losing record against any Grand Slam tournament champion. :p
     
  15. Steffi-forever

    Steffi-forever Semi-Pro

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    If I have to chose a palmares from any athletes from any sports, I would pick Graf's:

    • Most Grand Slam single titles in the Open Era (22)
    • Only player man and woman to have defended all the Grand Slam tournaments (achieved this 2 times)
    • Winning all the Grand Slam tournaments at least 4 times each
    • Winning the Golden Slam
    • 377 weeks at n° 1 (more than any player man and woman)
    • 8 Year-ends at n° 1
    • Most consecutive weeks at n° 1 for a female player with 186 (Federer has 237 consecutive weeks)
    • Being in the top 2 in the ranking for 10 years and 3 months consecutive (from march 1987 to June 1997)
    • Being rank n° 1 at some point during 10 differents years (1987-1991, 1993-1997)
    • Winning all the Grand Slam tournaments on every surfaces at least 6 times each
    • Greatest 2 seasons back-to-back in 1988/1989 (Won 7 Grand Slam titles and 1 final)
    • 13 consecutive Grand Slam finals
    • Most Channel Slam - winning the French Open and Wimbledon the same year, with 4 (tied with Helen Wills Moody)
    • Most French Open/Wimbledon titles (13)
    • Most Hardcourt slams titles with 9 (tied with Serena Williams)
    • Highest Hard court winning percentage: 90.30% (335–36)
    • Most consecutive matches won at the start of the season (45 matches in 1987)
    • Most matches won at the French Open (84)
    • Most little slam (winning 3/4 slams in a calendar year) with 4 (tied with Margaret Court)
    • The least games lost for a French Open winner (Only lost 20 in 1988)
    • Most Tier 1 titles (18)
    • Only female player to not have a losing record against any Grand Slam tournament champion
    • Only player to beat the top 3 players in the world in the same tournament (French Open 1999 - Hingis, Davenport and Seles)
    • Gave the worst lost for a n° 1 player in a Grand Slam final (Wimbledon 1992)
    • Only woman to held all the Grand Slam tournaments at the same time twice
    • Winning a Grand Slam final 60 60
     
  16. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    No, you can't pull the "those stats don't matter" line when the discussion thread is exactly about the utterly facetious use of statistics - as is the case of the Nadal-Federer h2h.

    The statistics that matter say Federer is, by miles, the more accomplished and greater player. For a myriad of reasons the h2h is irrelevant except to partisan hacks who just refuse to understand that it's whole accomplishments that matter in determining tennis greatness.

    If you go down the h2h path of logic you end up with similarly moronic topics like "Milos Raonic is the greatest tennis player on earth because he hits the most aces."
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013
  17. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    That is quite evident.

    Oh, the indoor/outdoor sub-sub-sub category is important now too.

    I would love to hear you explanation of why outdoor results matter more than indoor ones. I'd hazard a guess that the indoor/outdoor element is only 1/10th as relevant as Nadal gaining the majority of his wins on his pet surface.

    So you're claiming that Nadal was so much worse on hard courts when he lost to pretty much nobodies who then often got spanked by Federer that if he had played Federer he would have won even more often?

    Wow, that is some special kind of IQ-challenged logic right there.


    I know, it's so weird how the average Federer fan can comprehend essentially basic concepts like working out which accomplishments actually matter in tennis and have the patience to bother to try and explain it to the sort of hacks who show no ability or interest in understanding the broader picture as it is understood by people with even a moderate understanding of tennis historically.
     
  18. Cavaleer

    Cavaleer Semi-Pro

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    BO JACKSON......love Fed as a tennis player but y'all must be smoking crack to think any other athlete is even vaguely in the same league as Vincent.

    No other athlete has ever dreamt of doing the things he did casually. Given five more years he would've been the greatest player of not one but TWO MAJOR LEAGUE sports. Hall of Fame in TWO sports.

    No other athlete made future Hall of Famers look like kids every time they stepped on the field of play.

    No one even close....

    You may proceed with your regular banter.....
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2013
  19. Cavaleer

    Cavaleer Semi-Pro

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    And let's not talk about the two most REAL sports ever- Boxing and Wrestling.

    Sugar Ray Robinson was a more dominant champion than Ali. F

    DAN GABLE was simply THE GOD of wrestling. 181-1 or something like that in his entire four years of college then won Gold at the Olympics. Then Gable coached Iowa to 16 NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIPS, 9 in a row.

    His motto...."SHOW UP.....DOMINATE....GO HOME."


    Keep rockin....haha
     
  20. monfed

    monfed Guest

    Oh please enough of this Bo Jackson guy winning whatever he laid his eyes upon. Look Federer is the greatest sportsperson in all of sport,just deal with it!
     
  21. jg153040

    jg153040 G.O.A.T.

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    But you can't compare tennis to other sports. In Boxing you have the same conditions, the same ring. It's easier to dominate in less dimensions. Because when you distance yourself from the pack in one category you can dominate.

    In tennis you have different surfaces and conditions. This means to dominate you have to distance yourself in a lot of categories. It's the structure of the sport.

    If tennis was played on only one indoor court, I think we would see more dominant champions. Different surfaces are almost like different sports.
    To dominate grass and clay is similar as to dominate sprint and marathon. Not the same, but analogy is to prove a point.

    My point is, there is no way to compare numbers across other sports. Because domination is relative to the dimensions of the sport. How many room there is to distance yourself from competition? And the level of competition. In tennis you need skill and endurance. In some sports you need only endurance.

    Even withing tennis it's very hard to compare across eras. So, it's pointless to have the greatest sportsman of all time.
     
  22. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    I agree about that. but still rivalries matter. they are not as important as in other sports but still agassi sampras or mac lendl have been huge media rivalries. for the media it always came down to the big showdown.

    fed is greater than nadal but still that h2h is a dent in his resumee (even if it is skewed by clay and their age difference. after all nadal was able to beat peak federer on HC at age 17.

    I do think that fed is the greatest tennis player and I also rank him above sideshow sports greats because the prevalence of the sport matters. I just can't rank a rower, dart player or billiard player above fed because nobody is doing those sports. it is easy to dominate them unlike a big sport like tennis.

    but I cannot see how you can rank fed above bolt, phelps, ali or jordan who dominated by sports without being the whipping boy of their main rival. I mean their h2h is skewed but if you consider that many matches were not only post feds prime but also pre nadals prime and nadal also lost a lot of time to inujuries you have to at least say that peak nadal and peak fed are equal even off clay. fed was just a whole lot more consistent and durable.

    bolt, ali, phelps or jordan on the other hand did not have an equally good rival. they flat out dominated. I mean you never heard ali complaining he was beaten because he didn't like the ring surface and phelps beat his rivals in all styles.

    fed is top10 all time in all sports but just not in the same league as the 4 I mentioned.
     
  23. kalyan4fedever

    kalyan4fedever Hall of Fame

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    I am not surprised ! Fed is the KING!
     
  24. Incognito

    Incognito Hall of Fame

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    what about Serena?
     
  25. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Correction: indirect rivalries matter. They're called *tournaments*.

    When you win a tournament you did better than everyone in the draw, not just the people you beat directly. That's how the ranking system, tournaments and, ultimately, pretty much all of tennis history view it.

    Insofar as Agassi and Sampras being rivals - the thing is, at the time the head to head was rarely ever discussed except in pre-match stats packages. The reason is Agassi's achievement were barely a shadow on those of Sampras. There was no head to head.

    > 1995 Sampras had 5 majors, Agassi 2. That's like comparing Hewitt to Edberg - no contest.
    > 1997 Sampras had 10, Agassi 3... That's roughly like like comparing Nadal to Djokovic - no contest.
    > 1999 Sampras 12, Agassi 5... That's like comparing Lendl to Roddick - no contest.

    If that is the dent Federer has to live on his resume with then he will retire in the knowledge he will be considered the pretty much undisputed GOAT for a very long time by the measurement standards that have been used since the open era began.

    I agree except for the rowing comment. Rowing is a more worthy and harder to succeed in sport than swimming. This is exactly why I rate swimming gold medals so lowly. (see more below)

    I haven't said Federer anywhere is greater than Ali or Jordan etc but I do disagree that Phelps or Bolt can yet be considered in the same light at Ali, Jordan, Federer, Schumacher and some others.

    Other than a face-value count - the simplest of all - it is a little dicey arguming that Phelps is the actual greatest Olympian of modern times. He merely has won the most medals. They're not the same thing. You only need to look at Steven Redgrave to see someone who is more accomplished and dominant over a much longer period of time at the Olympics (not to mention a generally more competitive sport than swimming). He won a gold medal in rowing at five consecutive Olympics. (additionally, 9 world champs). Think about it - every time he entered the Olympics in that event he won. Those were the only events he entered.

    Phelps by comparison has picked up multiple gold medals in events which he never even competed in the heats - he just did the final. The recovery time for swimming events is such that it is possible for people to compete for and win 3 or 4 gold medals in a single afternoon. Swimming golds on a realistic scale of effort and talent required would only be worth 1/4 of most gold medals - even less when you compare them to something like the decathlon where athletes have to master 10 completely different disciplines and will get one, maybe two chances in their entire career to compete for a sole gold medal.

    Without wanting to pay out someone who is clearly the most accomplished swimmer ever and America's poster-child for whatever the fact is swimming and gymnastics competitors make up something like 18 of the top 20 medal winning athletes (on numbers won) since 1970. And it's not because those people are all miles and above decathletes or long-distance runners - it's because they're easy to rack up tons of medals in.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  26. Vcore89

    Vcore89 Hall of Fame

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    Mark Spitz ''The Albatross'', in my book is the greatest swimmer/athlete of all time--seven golds and world records in every event.

    Federer is about as close to Jordan in terms of worldwide fame and sports excellence. But Federer hasn't retired yet.:)
     
  27. monfed

    monfed Guest

    I think they understand but just refuse to acknowledge it. Seriously apart from H2H what else do they have on Fed? Nothing, wait they have the weak era diatribe too. Jokes apart, Fed outscores Nadal at 3/4 slams, WTF, time spent at #1(weeks+YE1). It's only at the French where Ralph outscores him, so Nadal is basically miles behind Fed in accomplishments. How anyone can say Nadal's still better than Fed even with all the evidence around is beyond me.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 31, 2013
  28. monfed

    monfed Guest

    Pardon me for my ignorance but why Schumacher though? Didn't he accomplish a lot because he had a great car and team in Ferrari? Say if he had raced with a Renault or a Sauber would he have accomplished as much? Isn't it because of a great car that F1 drivers succeed?
    (IDK a lot about F1 so please excuse me,just curious!)
     
  29. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    and contrary to fed with Nadal, Ali beat the unbeatable Foreman, reemerging from his ashes...
     
  30. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Well, the whole equipment thing is an area open to endless debate.

    For a lot of Schumacher's career you could argue he benefited from having the best equipment (or close) for sure - and F1 is a sport where the equipment matters a hell of a lot compared to most sports. But, on achievement alone, the dominance still stands regardless. He achieved at a rate which is hard to top in motorsport.
     
  31. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    But when it's all said and done Sugar Ray is the greatest boxer of all time, damn near unanimous
     
  32. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    6-3 6-0 at the 2011 WTF, Nadal's most one-sided loss in a decade.

    Are we still in the usual ignore anything that doesn't fit my narrative mode?
     
  33. xan

    xan Professional

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    what he said, i guess you could add Loeb in rallying as well. but considering f1 is the pinnacle of motorsport in general, and Schumacher being the most accomplished in that regard he is usually put up there.

    btw f1 drivers need to be in great shape as well.
     
  34. NLBwell

    NLBwell Legend

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    I'm not as knowledgeable about F1 as many people, but it seems that if Schumacher's team didn't think that he was the best driver they could have found someone they though was better.

    I'll still go with Jim Thorpe over Bo Jackson.
     
  35. Phoenix1983

    Phoenix1983 Hall of Fame

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    Fangio and Senna are generally considered more talented drivers than Schumacher, despite the latter owning most of the sport's records.

    And LOL @ the guy who said Mark Spitz was the greatest swimmer ever. It's Michael Phelps by a landslide.
     
  36. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    34 years old when he died. As passionate as he was imagine him still going into his 40s. Surely would have had more dominance had he lived.
     
  37. dominikk1985

    dominikk1985 Legend

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    bo jackson was a great athlete but not very accomplished. I don't care about football but in baseball he did have talent but still was only a.250 hitter with some power.

    it is an amazing feat that he could compete at a world class level in two sports but he was not dominating in baseball (don't know about football).
     
  38. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    Schumacher's main era of dominance happened by joining a relatively uncompetitive team (Ferrari) and being actively involved in helping build the people needed, doing the lion's work of testing etc over a couple of years period before they became dominant.

    Ferrari may have hired him but they were unlikely to have gotten as good as they did without those couple of years with him to ramp up their efforts.

    His first two championships prior to this were a very competitive era where hustle mattered a lot - he still benefited from a great car though.

    The real blights on Schumacher's career were his 1994 and 1997 seasons - both should rightly dismiss any chance he has of being in and greatest sportspeople list but seem not to for some reason. In 1997 all of his points were stripped for deliberately causing a crash with someone because, at that point, them not finishing meant he would win. It is - not sure why it's not widely known - one of the most unsporting acts in the history of sport basically (not to mention he could have killed the guy).

    Worse, he'd already gotten away with it in 1994. At the final race of the season and his car was damaged driving slowly. Damon Hill was passing him which would have secured the world title for Hill to Schumacher swerved his car into Hill's. Amazingly, he didn't have all his points removed.

    He is definitely one of the most objectionable sportspeople ever in sportsmanship terms but if the competition doesn't penalise it, people will go with it just as they do illegal equipment or PED use.
     
    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  39. Candide

    Candide Professional

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    For me greatness is not just about stats, in fact that is the least of my considerations. It has much more to do with the beauty and poetry of the player and the indefinable X factor that very rare athletes have that allows them to turn a simple sport into a form of Art. It is something instinctive and it can’t be taught. It's being able to perform the most difficult feats under the greatest pressure and to make it look graceful and elegant. Undoubtedly Federer stands alone in tennis in this regard - his balance, poise and looseness along with a freakish efficiency of movement is unparalleled. In fact for me I would agree with the conclusion of the article by submitted by the OP but for much different reasons. There are no sets of figures to back this up the things that I really value - we see it and we know it. They make us gasp, drop our chips and spray our beer across the room as they give us a momentary glimpse of the divine in the all too mortal and mundane world we inhabit.

    Here is my list of players who have given me this feeling and the ones I have enjoyed watching most in my lifetime.

    1. Roger Federer
    2. Zinedine Zidane
    3. George Best
    4. Thierry Henry
    5. Stefan Edberg
    6. Bjorn Borg
    7. Muhammad Ali
    8. Sugar Ray Leonard
    9. Ed Moses
    10. Michael Jordan
     
  40. Roger2003Wimbledon

    Roger2003Wimbledon Banned

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    Henry Shefflin has a claim, especially considering Phil Taylor is getting a mention.

    Fed probably is the overall GOAT.
     
  41. objectivity

    objectivity Banned

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    Similar to you, I am attracted most to beauty as well. For me the list is
    1. Daniela Hantuchova
    2. Michelle Jenneke
    3. Maria Sharapova...

    just kidding. :)
     
  42. storypeddler

    storypeddler Semi-Pro

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    Well, Bill Russell has 11 NBA championship rings. Wilt Chamberlain still holds over 30 NBA records. Rocky Marchiano retired undefeated.

    I like Roger and respect him, but you Federer fans really need to stay on your anti-psychotic meds.
     
  43. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    But not only Roger 17 slams is equivalent to Russell 11 rings, but Roger's record is equivalent to Michael Jordan. Added to the fact basketball in the 60s was weak, perhaps even weaker than tennis. Yes, Wilt, and Russell were ahead of their time, but during their era the players were no bigger than 6'9". Just like tennis, basketball has a depleted field because it was divided into two league(NBA and ABA). The best players in the nation are spread across both league. It wasn't until 1971 when both NBA and ABA merges as one. It's an equivalent to an open-era in tennis.
     
  44. Roger2003Wimbledon

    Roger2003Wimbledon Banned

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    Much like Darts which undermines Taylor's claim.
     
  45. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    this is the most curious list ever edited...
     
  46. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    Federer is the only one of the so called sport greats that has been blattantly beaten by his main rival...
     
  47. smoledman

    smoledman Legend

    Joined:
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    Right now Federer is No. 1 in line for retirement.
     
  48. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

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    7,426
    But: is Bill Russell better than Wilt Chamberlain?

    Or is Magic Johnson better than Larry Bird?
     
  49. Roger2003Wimbledon

    Roger2003Wimbledon Banned

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    Federer hasn't dominated Nadal, he has dominated tennis like nobody has before.
     
  50. Tennis Fanatic 070

    Tennis Fanatic 070 Banned

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    May 14, 2013
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    1,165
    Yes I know, considering Kirilenko isn't on your list
     

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