Laver #2

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by Chopin, Mar 23, 2012.

  1. Chopin

    Chopin Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2004
    Messages:
    4,103
    Location:
    St. John, USVI
    Gentlemen, it's been a great day: first I chanced chanced upon a live chess game on the FICS featuring #21 Dmitry Jakovenky (2729) and now I hear that Laver is #2 on the list of Tennis Channel's 100 Greatest! Yes!

    Congratulations, Laver: You're #2.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
    #1
  2. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,031
    We already have a thread like this in the general pro player forum.

    Anyway, here's the top ranked male and female players:


    100 Greatest of All Time
    PLAYER CRITERIA

    * Number of Major Titles won
    * Overall performance at Grand Slam Events
    * Player Ranking
    * Performance at ATP/WTA events
    * Performance(Win/loss record) at Davis & Fed Cup events
    * Records held or broken
    * Intangibles(contribution to tennis)

    Roger Federer Greatest Tennis Player OF All Time
     
    Last edited: Jun 15, 2015
    #2
  3. Nadal_Power

    Nadal_Power Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2010
    Messages:
    506
    Can you find Pancho Gonzales on the list.. that will tell you how big joke the list is, together with Lendl so low and Nadal so near the top and many other mistakes
     
    #3
  4. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    25,062
    Location:
    Cwmbran, Wales
    Can somebody please explain how McEnroe can be above Connors? I've seen a few people list this. Connors won more majors, more titles, much better consistency, had more weeks at number 1. Connors is always underrated, as is Gonzales (the forgotten dominant champion) due to turning professional over 18 years before the open era started having only had a short amateur career before that.
     
    #4
  5. Nadal_Power

    Nadal_Power Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2010
    Messages:
    506
    And who can explain Rosewall behind all of them?

    Shame on you Tennis Channel
     
    #5
  6. monfed

    monfed Guest

    Yup it's official, Federer's the GOAT and Laver's #2.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 23, 2012
    #6
  7. The-Champ

    The-Champ Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2007
    Messages:
    6,541
    Location:
    Sweden
    Do you really believe Nadal is ahead of Borg, or do you not care because Federer is on top?


    I'm a Nadal fan but I don't think he is ahead of Borg at this time.
     
    #7
  8. gavna

    gavna Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 29, 2010
    Messages:
    3,661
    You need to understand the criteria they are using...it's greatest tennis players of all time, not just singles, not just doubles, they're combining stats - so the players who had great success in all facets are getting ranked higher, Fed, Connors, Lendl, Sampras...etc did not play doubles much or at all.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
    #8
  9. SoBad

    SoBad Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 2, 2006
    Messages:
    7,527
    Location:
    shiran
    How would Ann Haydon-Jones do against someone like Hoad or Fereder on red clay, best of three sets? Could be a tough one.
     
    #9
  10. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    The choice of the #1 and #2 players would mean something if the list made any kind of sense, or had any kind of reasonable consistency. On many lists Pancho Gonzalez had more years as #1 than any player in history, and he's been thrown up into the cheap seats here. Rosewall had an amazing career spanning decades, and yet he's got Emerson ahead of him? Rosewall clearly has a greater career than Budge, as do other players like Tilden; yet Budge is thrown up near the top of the list. It must be due to his Grand Slam in '38. And the Grand Slam is a great achievement, but if winning one allows you to leapfrog half a dozen players with greater resumes, then Laver's two Grand Slams should be throwing him leaps and bounds over anyone with equal or greater resumes -- like Roger.

    Maybe some will assume that Federer trumps even two Grand Slams because he's a modern player. But clearly that is not the reasoning of the people who made the list, because Don Budge goes back much farther than Laver and he's been thrown up there with Agassi, McEnroe, Connors, Borg, Sampras. Laver's age should be no problem on this list; and his two Grand Slams should carry massive weight if Budge's single Slam is being given more weight than careers as great as Rosewall's and Tilden's.

    Don't get me wrong, I think Federer is a reasonable choice for #1; I just don't think it means much when the list is so nonsensical and inconsistent from beginning to end.
     
    #10
  11. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    I suppose they are factoring in doubles as well.
     
    #11
  12. robow7

    robow7 Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Messages:
    967
    Emmo in front of Rosewall, FAIL!

    Gonzales at 22, Major FAIL!
     
    #12
  13. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    25,062
    Location:
    Cwmbran, Wales
    Pancho Gonzales will never get his due recognition, because he "only won 2 majors" and spent 18 years as a professional before the open era had even started. Basically, his career from age 22 to 39 has been mostly ignored, with the bulk of the recognition for him coming for the 1948 and 1949 US Championship wins, and the 1969 Wimbledon classic with Charlie Pasarell when Gonzales was 41 years old.

    The irony is that had Gonzales stayed amateur well into the 1950s and won majors elsewhere other than the US Championships at Forest Hills, he'd be more recognised today, yet his reputation misses out because he dominated the professional game instead (where all the best players were).
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
    #13
  14. Bobby Jr

    Bobby Jr Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2010
    Messages:
    7,334
    Yep. Looking at tennis achievements holistically McEnroe has the edge on Connors for sure. His doubles achievements made sure of that.

    The list does seem to factor in plenty of intangibles but also has a bias against players the further you go back in years. Tony Wilding won four consecutive Wimbledons plus 2 world hardcourt championships and yet is ranked behind Yannick Noah. Go figure.
     
    #14
  15. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    Yeah, it's strange, for achieving something lesser (dominating the amateur game), he would have achieved greater recognition than he has now.
     
    #15
  16. pc1

    pc1 Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Messages:
    9,343
    Totally agree. Incidentally Laver at number two is pretty incredible considering how long ago he played but people talk about Laver all the time so his legend remains in people's minds. When McEnroe was playing he was ranked ahead of Laver, same with Borg, same with Sampras etc. However at the same time the list makes no sense at all so Laver at number two or number one wouldn't matter. It seems to be a list where someone remembers some great like Laver and thought, "Yeah that Laver should be up there somewhere but who is this Pancho Gonzalez. That Gonzalez can't be too good because I don't hear him mentioned much."

    It seems to me that this is a subjective list based on people who know nothing about tennis history. Now the choice of Federer is reasonable but can someone explain to me why he's ahead of for example Graf since Graf won more tournaments, more majors, won the Golden Slam and had a higher lifetime winning percentage than Federer. Do they rank the women lower than the men or were they equal? If it's equal then a lot of women are up there with anyone.

    Great post. Gonzalez won a lot of Pro Majors. I believe Gonzalez won 14 total majors if you include Pro Majors.

    Gonzalez at number 35 is such a joke since he ranks with anyone that ever lived. I've been doing a close study of his record and it's mind boggling how good it is. He's at worst in the top five of all male players and up there with anyone. To rank players like Emerson or Becker ahead of him is a total joke. Becker couldn't even serve as well as Gonzalez. What could Becker do that was better than Pancho Gonzalez? Gonzalez was defeating guys like Laver, Roche, Arthur Ashe when he was in his forties.

    How did they rank Hoad over Gonzalez? I know Hoad was gifted but Gonzalez did so much more and usually defeated Hoad when they played.

    On another note, Tilden should also be higher on the list. He was virtually invincible in his day.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
    #16
  17. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    I know, it's encouraging just to see him being ranked with the current alltime great who's in everyone's mind every day. But still, there's more to tennis history than Rod Laver. He's up there; he's in the conversation. Great. But all of his contemporaries are still waiting in line. Laver has two contemporaries -- Rosewall and Pancho -- who are GOAT candidates and are arguably as great as him, arguably even greater. But they're not even making it into the conversation.
     
    #17
  18. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,031
    They said Don Budge also won 8 slams in double and mixed double. That could be the reason why Don is ranked high. Also Laver didn't win any slam in double.
     
    #18
  19. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,031
    THere's always a disagreement in this kind of debate and you can argue for both side.

    They put substantial weight on Nadal career slam but Borg won only 2 of the the 4 slam events. I think that's the reason why they had him over Borg despite Borg's other stats are superior than Nadal.

    It's not that Nadal is distant ahead of Borg, they are ranked 6 and 7 respectively.
     
    #19
  20. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    Rosewall won 10 Slam titles in doubles, so if doubles was weighted so heavily, why is Rosewall well behind Budge? Rosewall is ahead of Budge in Slam doubles (10-8 ) and in Slam singles (8-6). And Ken's pro career dwarfs Budge's. So it must be Budge's Grand Slam that is lifting him up so high. But then Laver with two Grand Slams should get the greatest lift of all.

    And where did you read that? He has 9 Slam titles in doubles. Roger of course has none. That doesn't disqualify Federer as GOAT (hardly), but it is a negative mark for Federer, and a plus for Laver, in this particular list, if doubles is being given a lot of weight.
     
    #20
  21. robow7

    robow7 Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Messages:
    967
    More garbage: Agassi ahead of Connors and McEnroe. How the heck do you justify that???

    Funny, the name Noah doesn't come to my mind when I think of the greatest male tennis players of all time. One FO, OK, but never past the quarters at the US Open and 3rd round at Wimbly. More like a one hit wonder to me.

    Finally something debatable, I have to place Evert over Court since she played in a more competitive era and didn't earn so many on her home turf but at least I could see that one.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
    #21
  22. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    7,863
    I was watching a Sampras match from '95 recently. Mary Carillo talked about talking to Pete about tennis history & how highly he regarded the Aussies, esp Laver. She mentioned that he knew virtually nothing about Gonzalez, partly due to him missing from any slam leaderboards. I can only imagine what Federer or Djokovic know about him. They probably wouldn't even list him in a top 40 list.

    We are lucky that Laver is still alive & has an important court named after him, that in addition to his records help make him relevant to younger players. And I'm positive that the fact that Hoad was basically Laver's idol & Laver frequently mentions him today causes other players/writers who don't know much about tennis history to automatically elevate him in greatest ever debates(I once heard Federer mention Hoad when asked about players that should be considered among the greatest. Gee, I wonder where he got that idea from)

    Its a shame Laver doesn't talk about Pancho much, he could probably help his standing among the tennis world by doing so.

    I don't think I ever heard Mac talking about Pancho in all his years of commentary. While he never goes too long without mentioning Laver was his idol. I wonder if he ever saw him play.
     
    #22
  23. robow7

    robow7 Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Messages:
    967
    Connors was one to mention both Panchos a lot when he was interviewed and generally gave him his rightful due.
     
    #23
  24. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    4,355
    Now, Laver has given due to the line of pro champions like Vines, Budge, Riggs, Kramer, Gonzalez, Rosewall and himself in his list given in January, although i still believe, that not that much consideration was put into that ranking of his (or a journalist). He knows what pro tennis meant before 1968. This Tennis Channel list is just crap, not fun anymore. The pro scene before 1968 is completely ignored. And in the last years, you can find more information than ever about this time frame on the internet. Some friends of mine, and me myself have spent some work on the internet to make the real history of tennis more public. And a tennis medium should have the responsibility to show the real history, if they begin talking about greatest ever. I am living in Germany and have no access to Tennis Channel, thanks God. What i don't understand, is that Steve Flink, who writes for them, has accepted this list. From what i understand, even business managers were invited to give contributions to this list. Instead of asking people like Collins, Barrett, Geist, Trengove and others to help them, they turn to some recent players and business representatives. Its a shame.
    Two points, pc1 has already mentioned: That Laver appears at Nr. 2 is quite sensational given the whole list. That recent players top those lists, is no single case. Mac was high up there in the Inside Tennis list and computer tourmament, compiled by 37 experts in 1986 (which was much better), and Sampras topped the (combined man and women) list of Tennis Magazine a couple of years ago. It seems that his record has suddenly got smaller within 4 or 5 years, which isn't so in reality but in public memory. So Laver, whose prime was 50 years ago and not watched by many contributors, is still high in public memory, with a bit of luck, but nevertheless deserved.
    Second: Indeed, numerically there is no way, that Federer or Sampras top the best women. In fact, Lenglen, Wills, Court, Nav and Graf have better numbers in all relevant categories, in absolute numbers, in percentages, in majors, overall than all men. The only record, where a male record is better than a womens record is the Grand Slam (singles) record.
     
    Last edited: Mar 23, 2012
    #24
  25. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    25,062
    Location:
    Cwmbran, Wales
    Yes, he still does when asked about the legends of the game. Pancho Segura, of course, coached Connors for many years and won 3 US Pros in a row in 1950, 1951 and 1952, and Pancho Gonzales was who Connors picked if someone had to play a match for his life.
     
    #25
  26. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    4,355
    Poor Borgforever and Newmark. They put so much effort into their fine contributions on the Dohertys. But following Tennis Channel, they never existed, all their Wim, US, Davis Cup, Riviera and Olympics wins figments of our imagination.
     
    #26
  27. pc1

    pc1 Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Messages:
    9,343
    I don't think they included doubles in their thoughts processes but you are wrong. Laver won a few doubles majors.
     
    #27
  28. pc1

    pc1 Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2008
    Messages:
    9,343
    And that is extremely ignorant I might add that they are not even close. Gonzalez and Rosewall are two of the few players I would say are GOAT candidates. To put incredibly inferior players by record and talent over them is unbelievable to me.
     
    #28
  29. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    To me ,too.But Laver is the best of that great threesome, along current´s and Borg-Mac-Connors possibly the strongest.

    I agree Laver= 2

    In fact, Laver has won 2 Gran Slams.He can only compete against himself in tennis history so, when Laver loses to Rodney, he´s nº 2.:)
     
    #29
  30. bluegrasser

    bluegrasser Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2005
    Messages:
    2,340
    agreed - Connors at #15 ! come on - he should of made the top ten IMO.
     
    #30
  31. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,650
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    Henry Austin!!!

    You've got to be kidding.
     
    #31
  32. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,650
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    No, no, no!

    1. Rocket
    2. Rodney
    3. Laver
    4. Gonzales
    5. Rosewall
    6. Tilden
    7. Federer
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
    #32
  33. robow7

    robow7 Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2008
    Messages:
    967
    How can he be on any "greatest list" when one can't even bring his name up on Wiki, unless he was also one helluva architect in his spare time.

    Edit: sorry didn't know he went by the name "Bunny" and for that alone, you shouldn't be on that list.
     
    #33
  34. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    21,031
    Thanks for the info., I checked it out and Laver has 6 double and 3 mix double slams.

    The Tennis Channel didn't mention a word about Laver's double slams when his name was mentioned as the #2. There were high praise for his Grand Slams from start to finish. If double slam doesn't have much influence in ranking, then I don't think Don Budge 8 double/mix slam is the reason he's ranked high, must be something else. Because Mac should be ranked higher than #13 if double plays a huge role.

    The episodes from The Tennis Channel had many inputs from historians/writers/analasyts/ex-players on these ranking players, but whatever you heard from them doesn't necessary means all the criteria was mentioned or complete, it was a short summary. TTC takes all of these criteria into consideration:

    * Number of Major Titles won
    * Overall performance at Grand Slam Events
    * Player Ranking
    * Performance at ATP/WTA events
    * Performance at Davis & Fed Cup events
    * Records held or broken
    * Intangibles(contribuition to tennis)
     
    #34
  35. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Apr 22, 2005
    Messages:
    4,355
    If they had taken that into consideration Court, Wills, Nav, Graf and Evert would top the list.
     
    #35
  36. floridatennisdude

    floridatennisdude Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    1,965
    Graf and Martina should have been ahead of Laver. And Graf should be #1 overall.

    This is coming from a huge Federer fan.
     
    #36
  37. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2005
    Messages:
    7,863

    here is the episode with 100-71

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7oX7s4wWVH8

    Notice Flink say of Muster(#95), "frankly, I'm surprised he made this list."
    That's a fairly telling remark.

    Flink doesn't run Tennis Channel, he only had so much input into this special(meaning not much)

    Taking the rankings out of it, it was a well made piece, with nice clips & comments from players, writers etc

    Collins was on camera quite a bit in the episodes, I'm sure he was asked to submit a list.

    This kind of reminds me of the AFI list(greatest movies), it was quite controversial & seemed to take current actors' opinions more seriously than film critics/historians. But again, if you took ranking out of it, it wasn't a bad list.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
    #37
  38. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Messages:
    4,934
    Location:
    Massachusetts
    Well if that is the case Court and Navratilova should be above Graf.
    Nadal at 4 for the men? Venus at 8 for the women? Helen Wills Moody not even top 10?
    I do not mind Fed at number 1 but many of the other places on the list are downright laughable.
     
    #38
  39. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    Sorry but it should be

    1/Rocket
    2/Rodney
    3/George
    4/Laver

    in rigourous sequence...
     
    #39
  40. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    Of course, which means you are a Laver disliker...
     
    #40
  41. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,650
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    Yep. I thought about that after posting.
     
    #41
  42. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Messages:
    12,650
    Location:
    Bierlandt
    This is too true, unfortunately.
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2012
    #42
  43. kiki

    kiki Banned

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Messages:
    18,715
    and Kim Hughes...
     
    #43
  44. Chopin

    Chopin Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2004
    Messages:
    4,103
    Location:
    St. John, USVI
    I thought about this and on the one hand, Graf has accomplished more. Yet, on the other, I think the greatest of all time should honour the best and most accomplished tennis players who will always be men by virtue of the label "best." I don't think it's sexist, just the truth. How could the greatest tennis player of all time be Graf when she'd lose to a challenger we've never heard of?
     
    #44
  45. Dean

    Dean Rookie

    Joined:
    May 31, 2007
    Messages:
    106
    I'd agree. They really should have spit the men and women up. As it really is a different game.

    Not really sure why Laver's position is the subject of so much contention??

    He did things that no else did and probably never will again.

    Everyone speaks famously of the double Grand Slam. but really we should be speak of the triple. He did sweep the four major titles in the pro ranks in 1967 as well.

    To me he exhibits everything that the greats should be measured on. Longevity, records held/broken, skill, consistency and adaptability over all surfaces and temperament under pressure.
     
    #45
  46. floridatennisdude

    floridatennisdude Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2012
    Messages:
    1,965
    Kind of irrelevant. Just like comparing eras. Look at accomplishments and domination and you can rank a GOAT in any sport, or anything. Don't judge head to head because it would never be a requirement nor has it ever been a constant reference point.
     
    #46
  47. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    They didn't actually mention or list his doubles titles.

    It was his Grand Slam in '38. Barrett said that you've got to give him one of the highest places on a GOAT list because he won the Grand Slam, and Wertheim echoed the sentiment.
     
    #47
  48. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    At least during the Rosewall segment Bud Collins said that you could make an argument for Ken as GOAT. He added that he had Rosewall "just about" at the top of his list.
     
    #48
  49. krosero

    krosero Legend

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2006
    Messages:
    5,579
    Very strange considering both Wilding and Brookes made the list.
     
    #49
  50. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2008
    Messages:
    15,704
    Location:
    U.S
    yes, in the Kiki world, anyone who likes federer or puts anyone other than Laver at no1 is a Laver hater ...... Jeez, get a life.....

    Its possible that a person is a fan of both Fed/Laver and puts Fed over Laver, but you can't fathom that possibility, can you ?
     
    #50

Share This Page