Nadal on your All-Time List?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by hoodjem, Jun 6, 2010.

  1. Wuornos

    Wuornos Professional

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    Hi Hoodjem

    You know me and the ratings methodology I use to rate players.

    Personally I put Rafael Nadal at #2 on the list of post WWII players with peak rating of 2779. This rating is derived as a function of his domination over a limited time period and the quality of competition faced and is calculated using a multi iterative system.

    Put simply he holds the position not only because of the success he has had but because of the time when he is doing it with the standard in the men's game having never been higher.

    Having said all this his win at the French Open in 2010 has not changed my opinion one iota. While his peak rating stands at 2779 this was after the Australian open of 2009. His current rating stands at 2755 which is 9 points down on this time last year.

    I know most people would disagree with this evaluation but then most people would disagree with any evaluation as it would be almost impossible to get a majority consensus on a point like this. Never stops me trying though. :)

    Take care

    Tim
     
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  2. Wuornos

    Wuornos Professional

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    Absolutely. I agree with every word.

    Take care

    Tim
     
    #52
  3. pmerk34

    pmerk34 Legend

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    And bizarre. Mac, Lendl and Connors all clearly had better careers than Agassi
     
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  4. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Tim,

    While I sometimes disagree with the methods, I respect what you try to do. There will never be a perfect method but just tweaking it as you get more ideas and more information.
     
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  5. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    well stated. I agree that its tough to rate someone w/out seeing them as a player..especially tennis. I like your list, except Agassi. Lendl dominated tennis for years and had longevity, Agassi never dominated.
     
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  6. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    He could get a USO, but the conditions have to be right. Depends on who is in his draw. I think the speed of the USO is fatser than any other surface and major reason why he has yet to win, let alone get into a final at USO. I also think he has a chance, but things have to line up for him. If he faces one of those big server, tall, big FH guy..then he will have trouble. But I do like him at W and USO would be a bit tough...but you never know.:)
     
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  7. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Overall, I consider Nadal ahead of Agassi at this point. Yet, I would still put players such as McEnroe, Connors, and Lendl ahead of him. In addition, I would put him just ahead of Becker and Edberg as well. Of course, he's got more time to play, but he's still got some work to do, in terms of success at Wimbledon and/or the U.S. Open to be near "top tier" players such as Borg, Federer, Laver, and Sampras.
     
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  8. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Nice post Azzuri. The key word is dominated and you're right, Lendl was a very dominant player who almost never lost. Agassi, even in his best years was never dominant. Statistically Agassi's best year (I'm talking about won-lost record) was 1995 and yet he was number two in the world to Sampras.
     
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  9. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Nadal's one of those rare players in which it's hard to pinpoint a weakness. I know we talk about stats and accomplishments a lot but looking at him from my own unexpert eyes I just think it's hard to find a gameplan against him. The guy has a terrific forehand and backhand, speed, stamina, a decent serve and a good volley. There aren't too many players you can say that about. Those you can say that about are usually GOAT candidates.
     
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  10. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    I agree with everything you said excpet for the "fluke" part. with your intelligence, I am sure you can come with a better word to describe winning all 4 majors.;-)
     
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  11. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    wow, talk about clueless. "not much else"???? how about 286 weeks at #1and 6 straight year end #1. no one in their right mind would even suggest that Mac is a greater player than Sampras and I am a #1 Mac fan. utterly clueless.
     
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  12. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    amazing when people use the word "inconsistent" with Agassi. I believe he finished top ten 15/17 years at one point..or something even better.
     
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  13. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    Agassi may be the most consistent player ever. in his 20 year career he probably finished top 10 15-16 times (I am taking a guess). How many guys play that long and stay that competitive, especially at his age. But when i look at "rankings" I can't fathom Agassi ahead of Lendl. That guy scared everyone, dominated almost everyone and was a force on all surfaces. he even made it to 2 W finals when the courts were as quick as silcone ice.

    excellent point on 1995.
     
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  14. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    this may sound stupid, but I am always impressed with nadal at the net. I know he rarely goes there, but when he does I find him to be very good. Imagine if he had to play on W grass of the 80-90's..I think he could be a solid player on grass even back then. What I mean is Nadal is strong all over as you stated, he has little weakness. His serve has gotten better over the past 2 years and I always thought this was his "wekaness", but its pretty good now.
     
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  15. pmerk34

    pmerk34 Legend

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    Nadal seems to be able to adjust quite well the only surface left is the quicker hardcourts. No US Opens = a big problem in all time ratings in my book.
     
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  16. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I agree with you. I think Nadal's a very good volleyer. The guy has good range at the net and he rarely misses a volley. I think you're right, he has such a solid volley that I can see him winning on the old Wimbledon grass of the 80's and 90's.
     
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  17. Gemini

    Gemini Hall of Fame

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    He's probably in my top 10. I'd have to evaluate past players a little more carefully to decide where to place him.

    He's still behind several players in terms of total major titles and the fact that his GS record is dominated by his clay court success only doesn't really give him much credibility to be in my top 5.
     
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  18. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    The term "career grand slam" does come up in a few articles at least as far back as 1987: http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?p=3542283#post3542283. The press mentioned both Agassi and Sampras going after a career Grand Slam at the 1995 RG.

    But like you, I don't personally remember the term being used before the 90s, so I doubt it was used too often. And I'm sure part of the reason for that is simply that it was not achieved. Lendl went after it, but the marketing of the term "career Slam" really took off when Agassi achieved it.

    What I do remember from the 80s is people talking about winning all four majors (or going after the only major you've never won). I'm sure that's an old concept.
     
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  19. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    ^^^^^
    There definitely has been a shift in priority in professional tennis. The major count wasn't anywhere on the radar prior to Sampras' approach. Now, it seems to the the single greatest indicator of greatness to the press. Likewise, the term "career" slam is relatively new even in Open tennis and IMO made up to allow some press for the sport.

    The powers that be also made much to do over streaks which was not the case prior to a couple of years ago. Nadal's clay court streak warranted a ceremony and trophy and I believe Federer had some same for grass. Nothing was given to Vilas or Borg on clay or grass as I remember it and it wasn't even noteworthy. Certainly Chris Evert never got a nod for winning clay court matches 6 years in a row without a loss.

    I think that much of what is done now is simpy hype. And, sadly, it matches the 'pros' behavior on court - hype.

    With regard to the OP, Nadal certainly has to place now for claycourt tennis. He is also a very well rounded player with tactics that succeed on all surfaces. I don't know how much one can discount the absence of a U.S. Open title though as he's done the same on a like Aussie surface.
     
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  20. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    It all depends at what level of performance you choose to measure the consistency. If you are talking about being top 2, top 3, top 4 and top 5, then Agassi is seriously outperformed by several players in terms of longevity. But if you lower the level to the top 10, 25, 50 and 100, then he is up there. All things considered, I would say Connors, Lendl, Mac and even Sampras had a more impressive longevity overall because their numbers are much better at the higher levels.


    Most Years in Top 2

    Jimmy Connors 8
    Ivan Lendl 7
    Roger Federer 7
    John McEnroe 6
    Pete Sampras 6
    Rafael Nadal 5
    Bjorn Borg 4
    Stefan Edberg 4
    Andre Agassi 4

    Most Years in Top 3
    Jimmy Connors 12
    Ivan Lendl 10
    Pete Sampras 9
    Bjorn Borg 7
    John McEnroe 7
    Roger Federer 7
    Andre Agassi 6

    Most Years in Top 4
    Jimmy Connors 14
    Ivan Lendl 10
    John McEnroe 9
    Pete Sampras 9
    Bjorn Borg 8
    Andre Agassi 8

    Most Years in Top 5
    Jimmy Connors 14
    Ivan Lendl 11
    Pete Sampras 10
    John McEnroe 9
    Stefan Edberg 9
    Boris Becker 9
    Bjorn Borg 8
    Andre Agassi 8

    Most Years in Top 10
    Jimmy Connors 16
    Andre Agassi 16
    Ivan Lendl 13
    Pete Sampras 12
    Boris Becker 11
    John McEnroe 10
    Stefan Edberg 10

    Most Years in Top 25

    Andre Agassi 18
    Jimmy Connors 17
    John McEnroe 15
    Ivan Lendl 15
    Stefan Edberg 13
    Pete Sampras 13
    Boris Becker 12

    Most Years in Top 50

    Jimmy Connors 18
    Andre Agassi 18
    John McEnroe 16
    Ivan Lendl 15
    Guillermo Vilas 14
    Yannick Noah 13
    Stefan Edberg 13
    Michael Chang 13
    Pete Sampras 13
    Carlos Moya 13

    Most Years in Top 100
    Jimmy Connors 19
    Andre Agassi 19
    Fabrice Santoro 18
    Ivan Lendl 17
    John McEnroe 16
    Guillermo Vilas 15
    Boris Becker 15
    Magnus Gustafsson 15
    Pete Sampras 15
     
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  21. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    ^^^^^
    It's a shame those stats weren't applied to Ken Rosewall as well...
     
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  22. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    They are from 1973 through 2009 from the tennis28 site.
     
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  23. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Welcome back Tim. Nice to hear from you again.

    No. 2 Wow!! I do find your methodology interesting at the very least. If I cannot be persuaded to agree, that's certainly my problem not yours.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  24. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    We went through this discussion, I believe, last year. It seems (as I recall) that Krosero found an early reference to the phrase "career grand slam" applied to Lendl back when he was competing in the Wimby semis of 1989.

    Personally, I do not put much stock in the value and prestige of the CGS. I think Mary Carillo (et.al.) resurrected the concept for Agassi in order to hype Americans' interest in tennis by way of Agassi. (Perhaps my devaluing of the CGS is derived from this nefarious source of resurrection.)
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  25. pmerk34

    pmerk34 Legend

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    If you watch the tennis channel classics from the 70's the tour was much different. The slams were nowhere the be all and end all that they are now. There were made for TV tournaments back then with 8 person draws for big big money. There was contract World Team Tennis which cost Chris Evert a few French Opens and got Jimmy Connors being banned from the 1974 French. Even Wimbledon was boycotted in 1973.

    This is why slam counting only is a lame way to rate players prior to the mid 80 IMO
     
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  26. davey25

    davey25 Banned

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    He is the same poster who believes Seles ranks head and shoulders above Serena. Take that for what it is worth.
     
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  27. Nadal_Power

    Nadal_Power Semi-Pro

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    With 7 Grand Slam titles and 18 Masters 1000 crowns from Monte Carlo 2005 'til French Open 2010 I think he is for sure member of the Top 10 group of Open era tennis players

    1) Federer
    2) Sampras
    3) Borg
    4) Laver
    5) Connors
    6) Agassi
    7) McEbroe
    8) Wilander
    9) Rafael Nadal
    10) Boris Becker
     
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  28. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    I've got a quick question for you. Agassi, Wilander, Nadal, and Becker all ahead of Lendl? I know Lendl didn't get a Wimbledon title, but he did make the SF there a couple of times, while winning multiple times at the US Open and the French Open, while also having great results indoors. The fact that Lendl made the finals of the US Open 8 times in a row, while winning it 3 times is stunning.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  29. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    Open Era Only

    1. Federer
    2. Borg
    3. Sampras
    4. Connors
    5. McEnroe
    6. Lendl
    7. Laver
    8. Agassi
    9. Nadal
    10. Wilander

    1-3 are in their own kind of group a little ahead of everyone else, 4-6 were tough, and I could probably rank them in any order and be satisfied, Laver is kind of on his own at 7...and 8-10 again can probably be listed in any order as well. I can see Nadal moving up both the Open Era and All Time list, but it depends on a few things just how much he moves up:

    Winning a US Open (will help, especially if he can beat Fed en route to it)

    Winning a couple of non French Slams (if he doesn't and just wins frenches, his record will be looked back on as way to surface centered, comments regarding this have already popped up in different places)

    Padding the Masters shield record, adding some more shields will definitely move him up

    Add some weeks at number 1, those never hurt.

    Mosy importantly he needs to keep himself healthy and schedule smart, because if he blows out his knees or keeps playing himself into the ground he'll be retiring a lot younger than he might otherwise.
     
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  30. pmerk34

    pmerk34 Legend

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    Nadal/Agassi/Becker/ Wilander over Lendl? hahahahahahahahah
     
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  31. jerriy

    jerriy Hall of Fame

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    Indeed, what a blashpemy

    Only Becker and Edberg are debateble here. They avoided getting whipped by exclusively concentrating on grass.

    But the rest of those, especially Wilander, Connors, Courier, Agassi and of-course Johnny Mac were all Lendl's b*tches.
     
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  32. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  33. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I agree with what you're implying borg number one.

    According to the ATP website, Wilander won 33 titles and 7 majors (three French, three Australian and one US Open) and Edberg won 42 titles and 6 majors (two Australian, two Wimbledons and two US Opens). Becker won 49 tournaments and 6 majors which included 3 Wimbledons, 2 Australians and 1 US Open.

    Lendl won 8 majors (three French, three US Opens and two Australians) and officially 94 titles. There are records of Lendl winning more tournaments. However it seems to me that if you combined any of the two out of three players (Wilander, Becker and Edberg) that Lendl's record is about as good as them combined.

    Lendl, for a long period of time was a big factor in any majors and was almost always one of the favorites in any tournament. He was great.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  34. anointedone

    anointedone Banned

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    Why would Nadal have to beat Federer to win a U.S Open? He has already more than proven himself in the Fedal rivalry, far more than Federer has in fact. Agassi didnt beat any of the toughest opponents at all to win his lone French Open, and even to some extent Wimbledon, to complete his Career Slam.
     
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  35. billnepill

    billnepill Hall of Fame

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    wow :D

    Your main argument against Federer is the weak field. Nadal competed against the same field and he's deserved the 7th spot and Federer the 3rd with 16 Slams won.

    I think Nadal's place in your list is debatable, but reasonable. It's just your total biased towards Federer that make your statements less respected for me. Try to be objective for a change, pls.
     
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  36. davey25

    davey25 Banned

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    There are reasons to justify Sampras and Borg being above Federer apart from the level of competition.

    In the case of Sampras:

    -Sampras's 6 straight year end #1s which Federer did not even come that close to (and might not even reach in total).

    -Now it looks like Sampras's most weeks at #1 record possibly holding up as well.

    -Sampras's 7 Wimbledons. 1 more than Federer has at this point. His greater overall dominance and more convincing performances there.

    -Sampras having the same # of U.S Open titles but more strong results there.

    -Sampras's 14-4 slam final record. Superior to Federer or nearly everyone else.

    -Sampras's winning slams in his teens, 20s, and 30s. His final slam victory coming 12 years after his first.

    -Sampras's Davis Cup title, almost single handedly winning it for the U.S on his worst surface over a strong Russian clay court team.

    -Better record at the ATP World Championships with more titles.


    People make it sound like Federer has surpassed Federer in every category. This is far from the case. Federer's edges at this point are:

    -Greater dominance overall and in the slams during his 4 year peak.

    -Superior clay court career.

    -2 more slams overall.

    -Better record at the Australian Open.


    As for Borg his complete dominance of the polar opposites of clay and traditional fast grass can be used as a strong argument to put him over just about anyone. Heck the guy was the Nadal of his time on clay, yet still had a 41 match win streak at Wimbledon on the old fast grass which Federer missed tieing by 1 match. And his top end competition as far as his biggest rivals was tougher than either Sampras or Federer, though the Sampras era had more depth overall.


    As for Nadal the competition he faced is not exactly the same as Federer, just like the competition Sampras and Agassi each faced given when they won most of their slams and their draws is not the same either. Nadal won many of his slams beating Federer. Federer did not win many of his slams by beating Nadal at all. Nadal has had most of his achievements since 2008 vs an overall tougher field than the field was from 2003-2007 when Federer had the majority of his current achievements and the majority of his dominance. I already explained my arguments for ranking him over Agassi though and if you read carefully it had nothing really to do with the competition level.

    Lastly if you choose to bring all 4 players into this together, which is never really the best way to do something like this anyway, it would only make less sense to ever rank Federer above Sampras if you are going to still rank Agassi over Nadal. After all to anyone who followed the 2 time periods and rivalries, the idea that the gap between Sampras and Agassi is smaller than the gap between Federer and Nadal seems ridiculous quite frankly. If Federer ranks over Sampras as most seem to, even more certainly Nadal should already rank ahead of Agassi, if you insist on looking at it from a 4 players parallels perspective.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  37. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    I'm assuming you were aware of how big a deal the media made of Lendl's quest to win Wimbledon? Esp in 1990 when he skipped the French to prepare for Wimbledon? Why do you think that was? Do you think it had anything to do with the fact that he had already won the other 3?After winning the '89 AO he talked about how important it was to him to have all 4 majors under his belt.

    I think Agassi is ranked too highly by a lot of fans, but I also think some fans seem to go out of their way to poo-poo the 'career grand slam.' many players pre Agassi clearly were aware of which slams they were missing(Edberg & Becker's FO quests were also talked a lot by the media in the early 90s. And of course Sampras)
    maybe you never heard the term 'career slam,' pre Agassi but I have trouble believing you weren't aware the concept.

    and maybe the putting down of the 'career slam' has to do with the AO's status pre 1985, but even then it was obvious how badly Borg & Mac wanted the USO & the French, which was basically the missing slam for them in their time since not many top players played the AO.

    Taking the AO out of the equation, these are the only open era players to win the French, Wimbledon, & USO in their career:

    Laver
    Agassi
    Fed

    I understand why Agassi is ranked lower here than many other Open Era greats(lack of dominance) but his career slam, even if you take the AO out of the equation is a pretty impressive feat.

    It was to Lendl. I've seen interviews with him from the 80s where he talked of how many majors he had, numbers seemed important to him. Not to mention how often he talked of 'peaking' for the 4 majors or how he he was criticized for saying stuff like "I only care about the majors anyway" when he lost in some minor events in his time. I'm sure that's part of where Sampras got the idea that slam count was a big deal. The AO did become a legit major during Lendl's reign.

    ha, Agassi is lucky the computer ranking only started in 1973, or Jimmy would be tops in this stat as well. He was clearly a top 10 player in '72.
     
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2010
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  38. boredone3456

    boredone3456 Legend

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    He doesn't need to, but if he beats the guy pretty much everyone considers the GOAT en route to all of his slams, especially if he completes the Career Grand Slam at the same time, it will definitely make him look better, especially in comparison to Agassi or others who are close to him in terms of stats. Many players have a hard time beating their cheif rivals everywhere, if Nadal can beat Federer at and win the US Open, it'll add to his credentials in moving up the list. He won't pass Federer (unless he gets extremely, extremely lucky, win the lottery twice kind of lucky) but it would move him up a lot further if he does than if he beats a bunch of middle of the pack players of his generation to win the US Open.
     
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  39. FEDERERNADAL13

    FEDERERNADAL13 Hall of Fame

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    1. Federer
    2. Laver
    3. Nadal
    4. Sampras
    5.Borg
    6. Lendl
    7. Agassi
     
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  40. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    It was a big deal because Wimbledon is the greatest stage of them all. Not because Lendl won the other three. Wimbledon was a big sore point for Lendl even before he won his first Australian.

    If the missing piece was the Australian you probably wouldn't hear much of a peep.
     
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  41. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Yes, and by that same token, it didn't mean much to me to say Federer has all 4. Again...yay? Nah...nice trivia note. Even Fed...let's face it, not facing Nadal? Having Nadal under par? Yeah....some great luck there! Good chance he would not have won it without...

    If for example, a very dominant guy came in, and we all said, he's going to win all 4 for sure, and then say...over 2 years he does...well that would mean something in terms of, wow, this guy is a versatile powerhouse(though still, that's just an extra subjective bonus)....but happening to eke out all 4 over a career....well again...might be worth a bit of extra credit, but not a helluva lot. Would I give a guy who happened to win one of each over his career, the nod over 3 wimbledon, 2 USO champ? Probably not. Certainly not clearly.

    In Fed's case, it might be more impressive than Agassi, considering how close he has been....but again...it's just a subjective bonus to me, and trivia note.

    In the end, it turns out that in Agassi's mix, he happened to get at least one of each. That's great! Um...beyond that....I SURE AS HECK, would NEVER EVER EVER trade 14 slam titles, or 16 slam titles, or even...9 slam titles for that! I doubt many players would.
     
    #91
  42. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Fed certainly didn't beat Nadal to get his FO.
     
    #92
  43. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I would agree with you on that also.

    I think the bottom line is that four majors shows you can play on all surfaces but it's not the end all. Lendl certainly could play on all surfaces but he is missing a Wimbledon. I'd much rather have Lendl's career.
     
    #93
  44. davey25

    davey25 Banned

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    I do think one thing in comparing Agassi to Nadal as far as just their actual abilities and talents go is that Nadal is by far the more talented athlete but Agassi is by far the more talented ball striker.
     
    #94
  45. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    True enough.

    Actually that's why I like Jimmy Connors' game more than Agassi's because you can argue that Connors is an even better ball striker than Agassi and he also has much greater mobility than Agassi.

    So I guess in a way Connors is a ball striker like Agassi but with a little less mobility than Nadal. Nadal of course has the heavy topspin percentage groundies of course also.
     
    Last edited: Jun 8, 2010
    #95
  46. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    I think that's mostly true, but Nadal's ability as a ballstriker shouldn't be underestimated, in some ways, he has better hands for redirecting shots on the run, then Agassi did, and that's saying something! But no, he doesn't strike the ball quite as sharply, thought that's partly compensated for by his sheer strength/racquet speed, and it's also partly due to his extreme topspin style, he really tends to come at the ball at an oblique angle!
     
    #96
  47. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    #97
  48. davey25

    davey25 Banned

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    Yeah I think you are right. Perhaps I worded myself wrong as I definitely believe Nadal is a great hitter of the ball. He just doesnt hit the ball as perfectly and cleanly as Agassi. However that is pretty much impossible to do with the extreme spin he likes to put on the ball which in itself is very difficult to face if you are an opponent. I agree on his ability to redirect shots on the run or from the extremities of the court. Pretty amazing. Combine that with how fast he is and how often he is going to get there, it is a scary proposition for his opponents.
     
    #98
  49. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    "blashpemy"?

    That's the best one I've seen in months. Fun to pronounce: "blash-pe-my".

    I like it.
     
    Last edited: Jun 10, 2010
    #99
  50. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Yep, gotta agree here. Lendl is no. 10 on my all-time list. Ahead of Connors, Mac, Edberg, Agassi, Wilander, and Becker.
     

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