Greatest Ballstriker of all time?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by President of Serve/Volley, Oct 17, 2009.

  1. President of Serve/Volley

    President of Serve/Volley Semi-Pro

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    I would vote for Andre Agassi.
     
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  2. ayuname

    ayuname Semi-Pro

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    Well, it is Andre Agassi.
     
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  3. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Agassi's great but I would add Rosewall and Connors to the list.
     
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  4. scootad.

    scootad. Semi-Pro

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    Federer

    For today's game I'd put Del Potro up there.
     
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  5. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Please define your terms: "greatest ballstriker"

    hardest?
    strongest?
    produces the most pace?
    cleanest?
    most spin?
    flattest?
    most touch?
    best placement?
    most variety?
     
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  6. jaggy

    jaggy G.O.A.T.

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    Jimmy Arias deserves a mention, Seles maybe on the womens side
     
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  7. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    I'll give a few suggestions even though the term Ball Striker can mean a lot of thing as hoodjem pointed out.

    Men:
    Agassi
    Connors
    Mac (if we are talking striking ability at the net)
    Nadal (Spin)
    Fed

    Women:
    Davenport (Clean and hard)
    The Williams (Power)
    Pierce
    Evert
    Graf
     
    #7
  8. 0d1n

    0d1n Hall of Fame

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    Petr Korda ;)
     
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  9. flying24

    flying24 Banned

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    Men (in no particular order):

    Federer
    Connors
    McEnroe
    Borg
    Laver
    Safin


    Wome (again in no particular order):

    Davenport
    Serena
    Venus
    Henin
    Pierce
    Seles
     
    #9
  10. scootad.

    scootad. Semi-Pro

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    Korda and Rios should be considered too.
     
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  11. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Petr Korda:
    "I faced some of the greatest players of the game across the net. When I began on tour and made my breakthrough there were men such as Ivan Lendl, Jimmy Connors and John McEnroe. Then there was Boris Becker and Stefan Edberg, while towards the end Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi took over at the top.

    The best player I ever hit tennis balls with was Rod Laver, who was warming up for a senior tournament in Palm Springs."
     
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2009
    #11
  12. President of Serve/Volley

    President of Serve/Volley Semi-Pro

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    Cleanest of the strike.
     
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  13. Keifers

    Keifers Legend

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    In the last 30 years.. Lindsay Davenport. Cleanest I've ever seen. Her swing is smooth (not exaggerated or violent), her timing is perfect, and the ball just flies off her racquet. I think her timing is the key.
     
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  14. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Oh, well in that case, it's Connors, NOT Agassi.

    Many of the other suggestions here, are good as well, though Federer wouldn't even be in the top 500 of all-time if we are only talking about cleanest ball-striking.
     
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  15. joe sch

    joe sch Hall of Fame

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    From a top player who played against all the greats mentioned, this nomination gets much respect. Im pretty sure that McEnroe, Sampras, and probably Agassi would nominate Federer. For a wood racket, I would go with Laver. For a graphite racket, I would go with Federer.
     
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  16. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Come on Joe! They are talking about "CLEANEST" strike. Federer isn't remotely in the picture. He has shanked more balls in a single tournament than Connors did in 30 years!
     
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  17. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    In terms on cleanliness of the strike of the ball for the men it definitely becomes Connors...the others I listed could be talked about depending on what dimension of striking you want to discuss.

    For the Women in terms of cleanliness of strike...it would for me be close between Davenport, Graf and Evert. The others I listed, while powerful...shanked a ton of balls on any given day...to many to contend for this particular category.
     
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  18. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I'm not sure if it's definitely Connors but clearly Connors is one of the best choices. Federer is really not in the running for the cleanest ball striker. Federer's a great player but he does shanks a lot of balls, especially off the backhand.

    I think another clean ball striker for the women would be Jennifer Capriati.
     
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  19. davey

    davey Rookie

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    #19
  20. eagle

    eagle Hall of Fame

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    Men: Agassi

    Women: Davenport

    r,
    eagle
     
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  21. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    yes, there are certainly other shotmaking dimensions in which those others would also score highly. I actually think some of the talented flakes like Rios and Leconte score high in some dimensions. But in terms of hitting the sweetspot the most cleanly, the most consistently, can't think of anyone to match Connors. His dilligente footwork, combined with great eyes, and very simple, clean strokes, made for the perfect storm in that particular way. Even for a pro, Connors stood out as a guy, who's priority was not to do big things with the ball, but first and foremost, just to make sweet contact.
     
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  22. jimbo333

    jimbo333 Hall of Fame

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    ^^^^^ And don't forget Connors was using that tiny headed T2000 racquet!

    Maybe that helped focus the mind:)
     
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  23. jrepac

    jrepac Professional

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    This feels right to me: Connors, then Agassi and I'd put Bjorn 3rd

    for women, Lindsay, Chris, Steffi and someone else said Capriati, who is also worthy of mentino...
     
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  24. srinrajesh

    srinrajesh Guest

    Laver, Connors, Borg
     
    #24
  25. adista4

    adista4 Semi-Pro

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    Andre Agassi
     
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  26. 35ft6

    35ft6 Legend

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    I will probably go with Agassi. Guga, Pioline, and Kafelnikov deserve to be mentioned as well. And as mentioned in the other thread, Nalbandian, Davydenko, and Murray.

    Federer is way up there, too. Yeah, he shanks a lot, that's what happens when you have that kind of racket head speed. I watched him practice when he was about 18 and you could immediately tell he had a special way with the racket.
     
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  27. Brettolius

    Brettolius Professional

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    Safin also hits a really clean ball. All time I have to go with Agassi. Crispy!!!
     
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  28. darthpwner

    darthpwner Banned

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    Agassi and Connors are the 2 greatest ballstrikers of all time. The best returners are virtually all the best ballstrikers because they can make good contact on a fast serve. BTW, has any one coined the term "dirty hitters?" Dirty hitters would be spin meisters like Nadal.
     
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  29. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    That sounds pretty fair, Capriati, even at a young age, hit a very clean ball. I wouldn't rate her any higher than 4th though, Lindsay, Chris and Steffi all were better than her.

    In term of the men..Agassi and Borg are pretty close in this department, and could be swapped, I might even be inclined to put Agassi 3rd behind Borg if we are only judging on cleanness of strike.
     
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  30. 0d1n

    0d1n Hall of Fame

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    Wasn't aware we were talking about women as well, but from the WTA I would also go with Davenport as many others already did.
    Considering her limited movement and where she got in the game of tennis, her ball striking ability and superb technique cannot be overstated really.
     
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  31. scootad.

    scootad. Semi-Pro

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    Thats for damn sure.

    I remember the first couple times I saw her play. The first time was '93 US Open 3rd round match vs. Sabatini. But it was really the second time I saw her play on ESPN vs. Graf at the AO '94 4th round. She lost something like 6-2 6-2 to Steffi but I distinctly remember watching and thinking wow she is taking what looks like a very easy swing and the sheer power coming off her racket was jaw dropping. At that time she was way out of shape in her dumptruck phase so of course she couldn't get to many of Graf's shots especially in the long rallies but I remember when she did boy she stood toe to toe with Graf. I recall thinking the only player I had previously seen do that was Seles (who was in hiatus from stabbing at that time).
     
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  32. ace0001a

    ace0001a Semi-Pro

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    From my 21+ years of watching tennis, my vote goes to Andre Agassi. His stroke mechanics are not only clean, but in my opinion a pure work of tennis artistry. Connors is also great for his era when the game was slower and the balls came at him alot flatter. To me, todays game was very much started by the likes of Agassi, Sampras, Courier, Chang and the bunch where power and spin really came into prominence...and the fact that Agassi is the cleanest striker in that bunch gets him my vote. I also remember his many great battles against Boris Becker, who was a guy who played with alot of power and spin. As for the women, while I did and do watch them, I can honestly say I really stopped paying attention to their stroke mechanics a long time ago. I suppose Lindsey Davenport did appear to have some really clean strokes (according to memory)...but these days, most women look like shankers to some degree from what I see (no offense).
     
    #32
  33. downdaline

    downdaline Professional

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    ^^^

    Yo Federer, im really happy for you and your slams, and i'll let you finish, but Agassi was one of the best ball strikers of all time. Of all time!
     
    #33
  34. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    #34
  35. BorisBeckerFan

    BorisBeckerFan Professional

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    Laver and Davenport.
     
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  36. adista4

    adista4 Semi-Pro

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    LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOL:)))))))
     
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  37. caranddriver

    caranddriver New User

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    Women: Steffi, Lindsay and Chris
     
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  38. cork_screw

    cork_screw Hall of Fame

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    Can we just stop these greatest of all time crap. Ivan Lendl was great, but so is Federer, Agassi and Sampras. Who knows who the best is. How about a real thread for once?
     
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  39. Power Player

    Power Player G.O.A.T.

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    Cleanest to me is agassi because he hit with so much power so consistently. I have yet to see anyone else hit that clean and hard since, but I am sure it will happen.
     
    #39
  40. scootad.

    scootad. Semi-Pro

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    Tracy Austin hit the ball pretty damn clean too. Lindsay modeled her groundies after her.
     
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  41. Lex

    Lex Rookie

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    Another Vote for Agassi.
     
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  42. heartman

    heartman Rookie

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    Liberace - lots of chin music...
     
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  43. AAAA

    AAAA Hall of Fame

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    Agassi was quoted for saying Sjeng Schalken had the cleanest ball-striking he'd ever seen(on the mens tour).
     
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