Great interview with jimmy connors

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by sonicare, Dec 20, 2012.

  1. sonicare

    sonicare Hall of Fame

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  2. Alchemy-Z

    Alchemy-Z Professional

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    That's how I feel about matches as well

    win lose...just give me 100%

    I know some people think nadal looking like he is in agony after losing a point is annoying..but to me I am glad it means that much.

    same with teary eyed fed...I want to see the fight/the agony/the struggle...

    players willing themselves beyond unknown limits to themselves to win that next point.

    Great Vid!
     
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  3. USS Tang

    USS Tang Rookie

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    Great interview! Connors speaks much better than I anticipated. I first saw him play when he was 18. Instinctively, I knew he was a different type player. Indeed, It was his generation (born 1946-1954), including Stockton, Gottfried, Solomon, Dibbs, Tanner, Nastase, Smith, Gerulaitis, etc., that really made tennis more exciting to watch.
     
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  4. sonicare

    sonicare Hall of Fame

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    why isn't this getting more discussion? I thought it was an awesome interview
     
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  5. big ted

    big ted Hall of Fame

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    i thought it was pretty good. it may not be as interesting as some other player interviews because he doesnt really have any regrets or secrets to talk about because he always laid it out on the line every match. i did think it was interesting that he said hes paying the price physically now for giving it his all, and also that he likes ferrer alot
     
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  6. USS Tang

    USS Tang Rookie

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    Connors is a rarity. His father apparently has very little influence in his life. His mother Gloria had been an outstanding tennis player, so she decides to mold him. Off they go, little Jimmy, Gloria, & her mother to all the USTLA (as it was then called) junior tournaments. We're talking the early and mid-1960s. Still, he's not the best. Gottfried, Stockton, Tanner, & Van Dillen routinely beat him in the 14s and 16s. Then, he gets the break of his life. His mother knows Pancho Segura, who is willing to take him under his wing, and in 1968 they're off to L.A. where he learns from the two Panchos (Segura and Gonzalez) and Bobby Riggs all there is to know about the game. Jimmy works hard and becomes a world-beater, but query: would he have achieved his success without those L.A. years?
     
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  7. roundiesee

    roundiesee Hall of Fame

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    Actually, this is so true! Don't know what it is about this generation of players, but I rarely look forward to any match nowadays, especially when it is going to be a baseline slugfest. Back in the day, you would get such a "buzz" when any one of those on the list (perhaps include Borg and McEnroe?) were about to play, regardless of the tournament, :(
     
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  8. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    I doubt he would have been a success without going to California, no, or at least his development would have been different.

    I think his mother and grandmother put that fighting spirit in him. They would beat a very young Jimmy at tennis so often and they would never ease off, yet they also made sure that he would never give up trying to win, usually by making him wait a day or two before the next match, rather than beating him on the court so often in such a short period that he lost interest. I believe it wasn't until Jimmy was 15 that he finally beat his mother for the first time, not long before he went off to Pancho Segura's place in California, by which time Jimmy was finally starting to beat his mother regularly.

    I also think it is obvious that the influence of his coach, Pancho Segura, was vital in developing Connors as a player, in terms of style and strategy. I think Connors' two-handed backhand had a lot of similarities with Segura's legendary two-handed forehand, in how it was such a powerful weapon. Pancho Gonzales and Bobby Riggs also played an influence, as you say, which taught Connors the subtleties about what life would be like on the tennis tour.

    Roscoe Tanner talked in his autobiography about how he and Connors went to Las Vegas around 1969 to practice with Gonzales, and how Gonzales would make them keep a very tough schedule, and kept asking them the time, particularly during the night hours, in order to drive home the importance of making sure you know where you are in terms of schedule at all times, even in a place so scarce of clocks like Las Vegas.
     
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2012
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  9. MAX PLY

    MAX PLY Hall of Fame

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    Excellent interview. "Boxing at 90 paces"--great line by Connors. OP-Thanks for sharing the link.
     
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  10. TomT

    TomT Hall of Fame

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    Great interview vids. Connors is one of my favorite players of all time to watch. Just fantastic technique and tenacious intensity. Still, he seems like a somewhat arrogant little *****. :)
     
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  11. Tennis Dunce

    Tennis Dunce Semi-Pro

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    Connors...scrappy, brimming with moxie...sigh...if only he got free points on his serve now and then.
     
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  12. Mick3391

    Mick3391 Professional

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    Very cool. You know I see these overachievers, and I think, "What if Donald Young or Joe Smo had their attitudes, how far could they have gone".

    Guys like Federer are only "Federer" because they have the NATURAL ABILITY AND THEY ARE OVER ACHEIVERS, that is they push themselves much farther than they should be.

    I often refer to boxing for comparisons, Greg Page, Riddick Bowe, UNBELIEVABLE natural talent, but no desire. Then you take someone like Holyfield, small, but a over achiever, gives his all.

    In all sports, some guys have natural talent, and do OK, others have no talent but desire, and do OK, it's the guy like Sugar Ray Leonard, or Roger Federer, who have both the natural talent AND desire, that makes them legends.

    My son has natural talent, but doesn't hussle, he wants the prize, but not the effort to get it. I think that will change, but a Conners, who should have lost many times one because he just never gave up, I think my son will become like me, playing through injuries, OBSESSING about what he is doing, OR, just playing recreational, but there's no glory without hard work.
     
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