How Much Has Federer Declined From His Prime

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Federer20042006, Mar 28, 2013.

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How Much Has Federer Declined?

  1. A lot. Roger Federer in 2004-2007 was fluid & explosive. He's just not the same.

    67 vote(s)
    61.5%
  2. A little. He may have lost a half a step, but that's it.

    34 vote(s)
    31.2%
  3. He hasn't declined at all, the competition is just much tougher.

    5 vote(s)
    4.6%
  4. He's a BETTER player now. It's just that he played in a weak era.

    3 vote(s)
    2.8%
  1. Federer20042006

    Federer20042006 Banned

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    How much has Federer declined from the years when he was dominating? Has he declined?
     
    #1
  2. Nathaniel_Near

    Nathaniel_Near G.O.A.T.

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    About 17 letters of the alphabet on a scale of fish to grass.
     
    #2
  3. phnx90

    phnx90 Hall of Fame

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    Voted "a lot"

    However, I actually believe it's somewhere between the first and second options (but closer to first), with a little extra competition mixed in.
     
    #3
  4. rainingaces

    rainingaces Legend

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    Tommy Haas is playing how Federer should play right now. All court tennis from rog and he can keep winning titles up until 36.
     
    #4
  5. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

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    Physically, quite a bit. His movement is significantly worse than it was when he was dominating. The way he moved against Nadal at Indian Wells - holy crap! If he moves like that the rest of his career, he might not ever win another title. He's also lost a lot of that day-in, day-out consistency that helped him excel so well in his best years.

    That said, I think he's gotten a lot better at certain things. I think he actually thinks out there on court a bit more than he used to. In 2005, he could hit forehand winners from anywhere in the court, so he didn't really need to think too hard. Now, with slow courts and opponents who are quicker than ever, he tends to work the point a little more before going for a winner. He also hits with more margin on both sides, which has improved the consistency of his backhand in particular. Obviously, it still has its off-days, but he hits topspin a lot more than he used to and slices a lot less. I think even his serving variety has improved. I remember watching his WTF match with Nadal in 2011 and being very impressed with the way his slice out wide on the deuce court totally handicapped Nadal. I don't remember him doing that nearly as much in his prime. His deadliest serves then were definitely the ones down the middle and the one out wide on the ad court.

    So in some ways he's a better tennis player, but the physical decline far outweighs the tactical changes he's made just to stay in the top four.
     
    #5
  6. Fiji

    Fiji Legend

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    A lot. ......
     
    #6
  7. zam88

    zam88 Professional

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    i wish the poll had been in some type of percentage or something.

    Because i would say in between a little and a lot.


    If 10-20% would be a little.. and a 50% decrease in ability was a lot, i'd say he's lost about a 1/3rd.


    But what's interesting is that he CAN bring some of the ultra-elite level stuff back sometimes... what's declined is the consistency and some of the pop.

    For a good portion of late '11 and mid-2012 he produced some pretty high level stuff. Beating Djoker and Murray back to back at Wimbledon is pretty impressive stuff.

    But some of these matches now aren't as much on his racket... if Djoker or Murray are playing at their peak, they're going to win the match.

    We'll see how the rest of this season goes though... I have this feeling that most of the motivation Federer had has gone away... and without that drive, i suspect the decline begins to advance... not to mention the age factor.

    Some of his play since the AO has been pretty bad.
     
    #7
  8. uliks

    uliks Professional

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    Well one thing is for sure. There is no decline in insecurity of his fans.
     
    #8
  9. doobiedoodoo

    doobiedoodoo Rookie

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    His movement and FH has declined a lot. Search Fed vs Djo AO 2007 on youtube and you can see the difference.
     
    #9
  10. BrooklynNY

    BrooklynNY Hall of Fame

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    ouch. :| :)
     
    #10
  11. THUNDERVOLLEY

    THUNDERVOLLEY G.O.A.T.

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    OP: how much? A great degree, but to anyone who watched male players over the generations, this is the expected course. Age effects many things, and everyone is used to his game.

    :)
     
    #11
  12. mightyrick

    mightyrick Hall of Fame

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    Such a strange poll. There's too many qualifications. As an above poster said, it should just be percentages and that's it. Unfortunately, this poll is like this:

    "Do you think Roger Federer has declined since his prime?"

    a) Yes, a lot. Federer's far too fashionable, too.
    b) Yes, a little. I also think the courts are slower.
    c) No, no decline at all. The courts are the same speed they always have been.
    d) He's much better now. I don't think Djokovic being gluten-free helps his game.

    When constructing a poll, just put simple answers. Don't put all of this extraneous crap for reasoning. It defeats the whole thing.
     
    #12
  13. Federer20042006

    Federer20042006 Banned

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    Percentages are stupid. How are you going to give a "percentage" for how he has declined?

    Duhhh, ohhhh, yeah, Federer declined 13.43983%, yo.
     
    #13
  14. The_Order

    The_Order Legend

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    He hasn't declined that much. Like an earlier poster said, he may have lost a step and the explosiveness off his FH, but he has also made improvements in other areas.

    Those improvements, whilst not making up for what he lost, certainly make the decline not as bad.

    The competition also have a massive ay in his results too, even if he isn't losing to Rafa, Novak or Murray, the fact that those guys are tough opponents for him drop his confidence levels when facing other guys.
     
    #14
  15. The_Order

    The_Order Legend

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    Actually, he has declined by 13.43984%. Get it right!
     
    #15
  16. forzamilan90

    forzamilan90 Legend

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    A.

    Watch footage from said years see divine judgement unleashed on tennis court. Be awed.
     
    #16
  17. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    There's an app for this.
     
    #17
  18. President

    President Legend

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    You do realize Pete Sampras was retired at the age Federer is now. Pretty much every all time great has had a huge drop off in form at Federer's age now and Roger's game is HEAVILY based on his movement. I think its a pretty steep decline, he's playing well still but nothing like he was from 2004-2006, even if the competition at the top has become fiercer. Compare his losses to lower ranked players (outside the top 4) now to during his prime, and you will see the difference. He lost to Rafa a lot during his prime too but that didn't see to "drop his confidence levels when facing the other guys".
     
    #18
  19. Sentinel

    Sentinel Bionic Poster

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    He has declined from 3-slam years to 0-slam years.
    That is a three percent decline i think !
     
    #19
  20. tata

    tata Professional

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    Well he is more error prone these days. Movement isn't as quick, lost depth and power on his groundies. His game is a lot more clear and predictable now whereas the old days were just a winner out of nowhere kind of thing. I do agree his serving is better in terms of variety. That slice to the deuce out wide has been used very effectively against particular opponents. He has added the drop shot in his weaponry. Over the years, Federer's ability to adapt to conditions has been good
     
    #20
  21. Relinquis

    Relinquis Hall of Fame

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    he's Still number 2 in the world, Still a contender at slams, Still rock my khakis with a cuff and a crease
    Still got love for the streets, repping 213
    Still the beat bangs, still doing my thang
    Since I left, ain't too much changed, still ...
     
    #21
  22. monfed

    monfed Guest

    LOL@a little. Sure. :rolleyes:
     
    #22
  23. Roddick85

    Roddick85 Professional

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    I voted a little. In terms of footwork I think he lost a bit of speed and that's the main reason why his strokes aren't as consistent as they were before. However, I do think that his backhand has improved over the years. It's only natural to see him decline a bit, he's aging just as we are. But the fact that at 31, 32 in August, he's still in contention to win tournaments and GS and that he's still ranked #2 in the world, just shows how much talent he has.

    You do get he had back issues at IW right?
     
    #23
  24. kalyan4fedever

    kalyan4fedever Hall of Fame

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    Prime fed would never allow a player like djoker to have the season he had in 2011 unlike nadal who got stepped over 7 times .
     
    #24
  25. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    Weak era
    He's playing better than ever, it makes no sense he got worse at tennis after 15 years on tour, do you honestly think he didn't work on improving his game in all those years? Is it logical to assume that someone doesn't improve (or even gets worse LOL) in his or hers chosen profession after doing it for 15 years? Maybe if you're a lazy ******* but Fed doesn't personally strike me as someone who's lazy.

    Just look at how much his bread and butter shot (the one that he owes his success the most to) topspin BH is better these days, nowadays it's a weapon while before that it was a grandpa push/slice.

    Now, he might seem slower than in his younger days but that's merely an illusion brought on by the fact that every other player on tour got faster in the meantime so Fed only seems slow in comparison (the athleticism in tennis is really on another level now, players are much bigger, stronger, faster etc.)

    Personally I feel that Fed will reach his peak in his 40s (he'll have another decade to further improve that deadly BH and further expand his tactical acumen) unless he's pushed out by the strong era players before then of course.
     
    #25
  26. DropShotArtist

    DropShotArtist Banned

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    Yes this is proven by Haas defeating Novak.
     
    #26
  27. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    What you said makes no sense given that we both know Nadal would have 20 slams (at the very least) if not for his injuries (or health issues as some people call them) which makes him a better tennis player than Lucky Luke (Federer).
     
    #27
  28. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    Haas is a bit of an early bloomer, his peak started at the age of 34 (soon to be 35), I think Fed's will start when he's 39-40.
     
    #28
  29. kragster

    kragster Hall of Fame

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    Great poast! Fed is at his peak now and next year when he turns 40, I can only imagine the damage he will be doing vs the field. I must say though that I am very excited by Rafa's prospects as well. At 17 , he was already really fast and he is just turning 30 next year. Five years from now when he turns 50, he will no doubt be atleast 1.5x as fast as he would have more running experience. I am thinking sub 10 times for 100m.
     
    #29
  30. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    It's remarkable that he can still maintain high ranking at this age plus his body is showing more sign of deteriorating(eg his back). It's a testament of his greatness. Sampras wasn't able to play at Roger's level during the tale end of his career. Roger's 2012 was better than Sampras 2002. Some people say 2002 field was weak but 2012 is strong. That theory suggest Roger is a lot better than Sampras in their late career(let alone during their prime). Could it be 2002(Safin, Hewitt, Andre, young Fed...) was strong which Sampras was kept at bay, or 2012 just wasn't that tough which Roger managed to reach the #1 ranking? Either way, nothing is conclusive and we only have biased opinion in favor of their favorite player. I know what Sampras fans, Nadal fans and Fed fans have their own view.
     
    #30
  31. 3fees

    3fees Hall of Fame

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    Declined some:

    ATP Points Race thru today
    Sony E M1K 2013

    R Nadal semi finals 0- QF points(-180)
    Murray 2nd place-600 points
    ND 1st Place 1000 pts- QF points(180)=-820
    Ferrer SF -QF points today(+180)
    Federer 3rd round (-90)
    points 2013
    Win 1000
    Final 600
    SF 360
    QF 180
    R16 90
    r32 45
    r96 10

    so rankings will change, Murray can set into 2nd place points with a win.
     
    #31
  32. DropShotArtist

    DropShotArtist Banned

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    if Federer were in his prime now he would be back to winning 3 slams per year as usual. They may be more tightly contested, but he would generally come out on top - except Nadal on clay.
     
    #32
  33. Fiji

    Fiji Legend

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    Exactly.

    10chr
     
    #33
  34. eidolonshinobi

    eidolonshinobi Professional

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    I'm just happy I was able to see him play during his prime. I have yet to see him play live and in person though.
     
    #34
  35. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    The biggest difference is the footwork. Peak Federer was far faster and nearly always in position.

    :)

    Oh dear. Is this the same Federer who has been beaten by Nadal so often in big matches? Nadal has never had a losing head-to-head record against Djokovic, by the way. In contrast, Federer has never had a winning head-to-head record against Nadal.
     
    #35
  36. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    I believe he can hold his ground except on clay and be ranked #1.
     
    #36
  37. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    But he was referring to Nole. Prime Nadal can't stop Nole from having a stellar 2011 season but a prime Fed would never allow Nole to win 3 slams. Keep in mind Nole din't win the FO(which would be a Calendar Slam) in 2011 because Roger took him out in the semifinal.
     
    #37
  38. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Nadal won all 4 matches against Federer in 2008. Federer went out early in some of those hardcourt tournaments after 2008 Wimbledon.
     
    #38
  39. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    But it's not about Fed vs Nadal, who we all know is bad match up for Roger.

    The point is a prime Nadal can't stop Nole from winning 3 slams. However, a prime Fed would never let Nole get away with it. Please stick to the point.
     
    #39
  40. Magnetite

    Magnetite Professional

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    Winner.

    (10)
     
    #40
  41. clayman2000

    clayman2000 Hall of Fame

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    2011 Nole could compete with 05 - 06 Roger. I would favour Nole in Australia, but would expect Federer to come through at Wimby and New York

    The difference between Roger now and from 04 - 07 is more UE's and slightly worse movement. His style hasnt changed all that much, except for the addition of the drop shot
     
    #41
  42. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    I concur. I think Nole might come out on top in RG too. I know people will harp on Federer beating Djokovic there in 2011, but that was one of Federer's best clay court matches ever, despite where he was in his career. In fact overall the 2011 French might be the best French Open he ever played, as evidenced that he was more competitive with Nadal in the final than he ever had been before, even in his so called peak years.
     
    #42
  43. President

    President Legend

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    I think that's more of a function of Nadal playing poorly overall in the 2011 clay season (he went 5 sets with JOHN ISNER in the first round of that tournament, LOL) than Federer playing better than in his prime. 2006, 2007 RG Federer was better IMO than 2011.
     
    #43
  44. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    I felt overall Federer at the 2011 RG event was more solid than I had ever seen him, without those UE patches he went through in various matches at the event (especialy vs decent opposition) even in his prime years. JMO. I agree Nadal was playing far worse at the 2011 RG and 2011 clay season in general, but most Federer fans/Nadal haters insist that was peak of peaks Nadal anyway.
     
    #44
  45. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

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    I do, and that's simply part of his aging. The older he gets, the more that particular injury and others will bother him.
     
    #45
  46. spinovic

    spinovic Hall of Fame

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    His movement is not nearly what it was in his dominating years. He has compensated for that by improving many other areas of his game and adding variety...most notably, I think his serve and his backhand are better.

    The problem is, in today's tennis, movement, speed and court coverage are king. So, while it's a testament to his greatness that he's managed to stave off a severe drop in results by adapting and evolving his game, it is a net loss in the end, IMO. And, one that, at age 31 now, is most glaring when he faces another of the top guys...as well as he still moves, he doesn't have the pure speed and athleticism that the other 3 possess.

    JMO
     
    #46
  47. spinovic

    spinovic Hall of Fame

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    Not a bad summary.

    Not sure how you quantify the drop in movement...slightly doesn't sound like much. To me, his movement is noticeably worse. Noticeably is the only way I can describe...its not like he's lost two steps, but its more than just a tiny drop. Again, hard to quantify it.

    I think his serve and backhand has improved and the forehand has become less consistent. The consistency on the serve hasn't been great lately.
     
    #47
  48. Feather

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    Mustard, I know that you are a reasonable and decent poster around here.

    I hope you will realize that kalyan4fedever is a guy pretending as a Roger fan and make flaming posts just to get others to post some anti Federer stuff. smoledman and kalyan4fedever are NOT Federer fans at all.

    Don't waste time on these kind of hypocrite posters. Pure haters are actually better than the fake fans. At least they don't pretend
     
    #48
  49. clayman2000

    clayman2000 Hall of Fame

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    His serve can be better at times, but to me, his first serve % fluctuates wayyy too much, and thats why I cannot say it has improved

    The forehand is definitely more error prone (which is completely natural)

    Ill admit your right about movement, he definitely struggles to run in rallies against the big guns, although in my opinion it is still elite
     
    #49
  50. DropShotArtist

    DropShotArtist Banned

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    Style hasn't changed? Are you kidding? How many outright FH winners does he hit nowadays from behind the baseline?
     
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