New interview with Rocket Laver

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by urban, Jun 11, 2009.

  1. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Just saw on time online a fresh interview with Laver.
    www.time.com/time/arts/article/0,8599,1903593,00.html

    As always he praises Federer. Interesting that Laver says at the end, he would himself pit against everyone with a wooden racket. In his old days, he seems to set his real status right, and not be overly humble all the time.
     
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  2. 35ft6

    35ft6 Legend

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    He really is a class act that Laver. He played an exhibition doubles match with Agassi and Tony Roche. Can't remember the 4th guy, may have been McEnroe. I'm pretty sure Laver was using a Babolat racket. Anyway, he seemed a bit out of it, like he was getting over a recent illness. Roche's volleys were still rock solid, he was a force out there, but Laver was just there as a celebrity. Agassi kept clowning around and Laver seemed a bit annoyed by it. I felt really bad for him that day.
     
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  3. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Laver's a very humble man but he wasn't stupid. He had to know how great he was. I remember Ivan Lendl, who used to practice with Laver in the late 1980's mentioning that he wasn't as talented as Laver and that Laver at that time probably still had one of the top ten or twenty volleys in the world and that he (Lendl) wished he had Laver's volley at that time.

    I do think Laver would be tremendous with today's equipment also considering what a powerful player he was. The man had a left arm and wrist the size of King Kong and his wrist was measured to be the size of the World Heavyweight Champion at the time. I would think that would be Sonny Liston.
     
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  4. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    The 4th in that match was John McEnroe. Laver and Roche teamed against Agassi and Laver. At one point, Agassi was tooling balls at Roche and Roche just volleyed them back. He wasn't affected, or so it seemed, by Agassi's pace at all and more than once volleyed for winners. He did it enough that Laver finally looked at Agassi and said "Not to his backhand" to which Agassi replied "I'm trying, I'm trying..."

    Laver was playing with a Babolat Pure Drive. I didn't get the same sense that Laver wasn't enjoying himself. He & Roche are just from a different era when players played and didn't entertain.

    Laver's game was evident. His movement was severly limited, but if he could get to the ball, he could still hit it. His volleys are still there.
     
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  5. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Lets not forget, that he suffered a severe stroke in 1998. Afterwards his left side was partly numb, he did very well, to recover movement and speech within a half year. He has still a slight limp to the left, maybe he had it even before, due to his left arm and his big heart.
     
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  6. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Yes, me too, I am wondering if this was before or after his stroke?
     
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  7. Q&M son

    Q&M son Professional

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    Thanks urban.

    Lucio.
     
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  8. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    It was definetly after. Laver really opened up both on court and off after his stroke. I don't know why, but he seems much more conversational about himself and his tennis.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2009
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  9. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    Gotta love this guy's backhanded compliments. A troll with nuance.
     
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  10. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    Loved these quotes from the Rocket:

     
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  11. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I'm really Laver said those quotes. A lot of people assume that Laver really thinks that when he was in his prime that, because of the all the praise Laver had for recent GOAT candidates that Laver actually thinks he would stand no chance against these players and judging from these quotes, apparently this is far from the case. And these people also use those quotes against Laver, saying basically that Laver should know players who were superior to him.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2009
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  12. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    We should save up some of these quotes for later.
     
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