Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by bolo, May 23, 2009.
Very interesting. I agree and disagree with him.
Agree - yes, Federer probably cannot be considered the greatest of all time after the recent string of losses to Nadal. That is, unless he really turns things around and fast.
Disagree - the suggestion that due to these losses Federer isn't better than Nadal. Yes, right now he isn't better, but he has definitely had a better career.
Newcombe is making a minor fallacy, a typical one that we get here occasionally. He is ignoring that longevity is very important to greatness and is focussing only on this particular point in time. Nadal hasn't proven that he can maintain this level for as long a period as Federer did.
Hmmn I don't agree that federer can't be GOAT if he doesn't turn things around. Nadal is already affecting federer by denying fed. several slams. So I don't feel there is any extra need to focus just on their H-H when evaluating Federer's career historically. If you do focus on the H-H in evaluating federer you are basicallly doublecounting nadal's wins at that point and focusing on the H-H also misses the fact that nadal has been mediocre on the hard courts for a while.
In the big picture for federer nadal is just another player and it's ok for fed. to lose to this guy many times as long as he gets to 15 slams. In my mind nadal might as well be the equivalent of sampras' ferreira. Although it is interesting to note that pros willing to speak out on this seem to think the H-H is an issue (agassi, newcombe, at least 1 other player I think, maybe gilbert).
I agree that newcombe is not taking longevity into account and that's obviously important. I think what's most important is that we have to be careful for nadal to not simply muddy the federer picture and then disappear through injury or burnout. Basically for him to trump federer he's got to match federer's numbers over the long run against the entire field.
I'm not just focusing on H2H. If Federer continues to lose to Nadal he will continue to lose tournaments, because Nadal is always there in the semi and usually the final.
15 majors will not make Federer the greatest ever. He's significantly behind in accomplishments when we look at guys like Laver, Rosewall and Gonzales. The first two players in particular were successful on all surfaces.
Yeah, Nadal just put together his first year as #1 in 2008. Only his first.
...thats his opinion.
Well I think it's probably way too difficult to compare federer or any of the pro era guys with anyone from the past in terms of stats. I am sure several of them would be great players now (certainly laver and gonzalez, haven't seen very much footage of rosewall), but comparisons in terms of titles and surfaces etc. are probably not very meaningful. Even comparing federer with the borg-sampras group is muddled now by changes in wimbledon's surface.
Yeah federer is likely to meet nadal many times in the next couple of years so if he doesn't do something different his GS total is going to take a serious hit.
Agassi said pretty much the same thing.
This is a dumb article.
Federer is not in his prime anymore. Of course he can't beat Nadal, he would also have no chance against his former self. Nadal is in his prime now, playing the best tennis he'll probably ever play, and Roger isn't playing half as good as he did back in 2004-2007.
I think the number of slams should be the ultimate factor. If Nadal manages to win more than Roger, he's had a better career than Roger. Simple as that.
100% agreement with this post. You can't really compare them now since Fed is pretty much 5-6 years older (he turns 28 in august i think). However, I can't deny that Nadal has been playing great these 2 years and will not downplay his achievements. It's just to early too tell about his future.
I don't get this rationale. Aren't Nadal & Federer in two different generations? There's a 5-6 yr age difference between the two. Lendl owed a 22-13 record vs. Connors. Although in my opinion, Lendl had a better career, I believe this record is distorted by the fact that many of their battles came after Connors was over the age of 30.
In addition, I also believe their head to head record is distorted by the fact that Federer was consistent on all surfaces earlier in their rivalry. Nadal was not making it to the finals of most hard court tourneys. Therefore it was difficult for Federer to get any kind of payback on his preferred surfaces. There's very little doubt that between 2004-2007, Federer was the superior player.
If Federer wins the French Open this year, & doesn't ever win another slam. I think he goes down as the GOAT. However, if he doesn't ever win the french nor does he surpass Sampras' record, it's very difficult to annoint him GOAT status. I honestly don't think the Nadal head to head is that important in my mind.
Agreed. Good post. Nice to see some common sense still left in this world.
Unless Nadal gets 12+ slams himself then it wont matter what the h2h ends up as
and unless Fed gets 15 plus the French, there will always be someone saying Pete was better/ Rod dominated on all srufaces/ Borg did RG and wimby when they were polar opposites
Agreed 10 chars.
I just read that article before you posted it
My thoughts, silly article and I don't believe there is a greatest of all time player
Newcombe is echoing the sentiments of every other commentator and former player. Newcombe is spot on.
Roger Federer needs to beat Rafael Nadal to become best-ever player
By Chris Wilson
May 24, 2009
Roger Federer's claim on being the best-ever tennis player will turn to dust if he can't solve the Rafael Nadal puzzle over the next six weeks.
Tennis legend John Newcombe says Federer can't be labelled the greatest if he isn't even the best player of his generation. And that is what confronts the Swiss ace if he falls to Nadal again at the French Open and Wimbledon.
While he rates Nadal-Federer as the greatest rivalry men's tennis has known, Newcombe said a record number of grand slam titles will not automatically make Federer No.1.
On the eve of the French Open, Federer stands just one title shy of Pete Sampras's record 14 majors.
But his chase for history has become a real-time battle with Nadal.
Newcombe said Nadal, now more than just a king on clay, has muddied the debate about the greatest player of this generation.
Having won this year's Australian Open, Nadal defends his French and Wimbledon titles in the next six weeks.
"Nadal's beaten him (in grand slams) on grass and hardcourt and he owns him on clay. How can you say Federer's better than Nadal?" Newcombe said.
"He's won on all three surfaces and Federer hasn't won a slam on clay. So suddenly the question is, if Nadal stays fit for the next three to four years, where's his place in history? Roger has some serious questions facing him over the next six weeks.
"It could determine Roger's place in history."
Newcombe says there hasn't been a better rivalry. Not McEnroe and Borg. Not Sampras and Agassi.
Federer and Nadal have won 19 of the past 23 grand slams between them. They have contested seven of the last 12 grand slam finals, and neither has lost a final to any other player.
But Nadal is 13-7 against Federer, and now 5-2 in grand slam deciders.
Newcombe was on the court after Federer's tearful loss to Nadal at this year's Australian Open. So, too, were Rod Laver, Ken Rosewall and Tony Roche, with 27 grand slam titles between them, perhaps haunting Federer like ghosts of tennis past.
"Roger was sitting in his chair with his head slumped and just a far-away vacant look in his eyes. He'd just been beaten on clay, grass and hardcourt in grand slam finals by Nadal," Newcombe recalled.
"I love Roger, I think he's a great guy and a great champion.
"But he really treasures his place in history and he had to be thinking, 'God, maybe I'm not as good as everybody said'.
"It's almost like a fighter that's never been knocked out. He gets knocked out once and he starts to doubt himself."
i see your point but i think you kight be wrong here, federer is only 27, people still see that as prime, prime age for tennis is like 25ish, so you could just as easily say nadal is not yet in his prime....
either way the only reason federer hasnt won like the last 5 slams (and hence still be considered in his prime) is because of nadal, so if federer isnt in his prime its because nadal put him out of it....
thats why its not a valid argument
27 is not prime....most open era players reach number 1 at age of 21..and most of them loses it within the next 1-2 years..that's pretty far from 27...even if u take that out of equation...fed is clearly not playing as good as he was... granted he still comes up with a great match now and then..but no where as consistently good as he was 2 years ago.... pete wasnt making the slam finals as consistently at the same age...that just goes to show the class of fed...even with the obvious drop in level...he is still there on the final weekends...plus dont forgot that for the 1st 4sets he was outplaying nads only to fade in the 5th set at AO final
Is Newcombe out of rehab? Where has he been the last couple of years? But, he is right about one thing. Fed is no goat. Never thought so and now Newc has answered why.
Ask Pat Cash how much you should respect the opinions of Newcome. He basically said that Newk was kind of jealous, negative and just enjoyed getting attention.
Ask Pat Rafter how much we should respect Newcombe's opinion. Who is more credible Cash or Rafter?
RAFTER! Cash isn't always there in his columns.
I didn't know people were allowed to create a new ID when they get banned? Maybe this guy used TheNatural talent to find a way around that rule...
why are you trolling with multiple Ids instead of discussing the tennis in this thread? did you get lost?
exactly. Rafter and Newcombe are more credible sources.
The funny thing is that If Newcombe joined this site and posted , people like vtmike would be insulting him within a day, yet Newcombe forgets more about tennis each minute than those guys will know in their lifetime.
let's not forget vtmike has a nadal problem, a djokovic problem and a murray problem. So It's a quite stressful time for him right now, we should cut him some slack.
Now he has a Newcombe problem as well, and his sponsorship contract with creepygifs has been terminated, the world is collapsing around him.
Newcombe isn't the smartest guy around. He pops up frequently with dumb statements.
Overall # of slams will determine their career and that's all that matters.
Furthermore, their head to head is skewed since Fed has been good enough to make the finals of clay tournaments, but Nadal wasn't good enough to get to the finals in hardcourt, so for a long time they only met in clay finals.
It seems that most ex-players are very reluctant to call Federer GOAT right now....this is the 3rd player in recent months to echoe the same sentiment!
For me I have to agree, even though I will agree the majority of Feds losses have come on Nadals prefered surface, But 9 of their 20 meetings have been on Rogers stronger surfaces. Nadal beat Fed on grass and hard on the biggest stages (slams) so I think Fed should have certainly have beaten Nadal at RG by now he has had 4 opportunities.
The H2H is definately a problem for me, he needs to close the gap.
Fed needs to beat Nadal at RG, close the h2h to 3 (14 - 11) and the get 15 slams and I would agree he is the GOAT!
How is this true?
Nadal's been maintaining a grand-slam winning level since 2005.
And Federer has been maintaining the same level since 2003.
If Nadal can maintain his level for 2 more years he will have matched what Federer's done, in terms of longevity, at this moment.
So you're saying you have so little expectations of Nadal that you doubt he will maintain his level for the next 2 years (not winning any slams in 2010 and 2011)?
Not what I meant. I'm talking about the much greater level of being the world's #1. As the #2 player in the world, Nadal only averaged one major per year between 2005-2007 and never challenged for masters cups on indoor surfaces.
It was only last year that Nadal truly established himself as the world's best, something that Federer was for four years consecutive (2004-2007).
This being said, I made no predictive statements. I'm just saying that Nadal has yet to play at that level for long enough to be considered as having a better career than Federer.
come on people...
2005/2006 federer vs 2008/2009 federer=6/2, 6/2, 6/2
nadal was just too bad to reach any finals except clay...
when he did, this happened:
Federer's been losing to Nadal since 2004, when he was world #1 for the first year ever and just entering his prime.
Nadal, on the other hand, was not in his prime.
This is ridiculous. They're 5 years apart, but Nadal started playing his best tennis at 18, whereas Federer did it at 21 (making a 3 year difference, really), and Nadal was playing in Federer's generation, anyways.
The "not in the same generation" argument is more applicable to Djokovic and Murray, as they only showed up in 2006 and onwards, really, whereas Nadal was beating Federer on hardcourts and clay from 2004 until 2008 when he finally beat him on grass.
Federer never lead the H2H, even in his absolute prime from 2004-2007. If you freeze the H2H at the end of 2007, Nadal still leads 8-6. And at that point 7 out of 14 of their matches were played on clay, 5 matches were played on hard, and 2 matches played on grass. Federer won 1 match on clay and Nadal won 2 matches on hardcourts, and that is the difference. Nadal could beat Federer on hardcourts easier than Federer could beat Nadal on clay. Even if the difference is just one match, it's still a match that a pre-prime Nadal won (either Miami or Dubai) against a guy who not only was in his prime but has the record for most Hardcourt Grand Slams in Men's Tennis History.
I agree with you saying that Fed can't beat Nadal now, though (at the FO) so the H2H is probably irrelevant from now on unless Fed really turns it around.
I don't agree with the Slam count, though, if Nadal can win 10 slams and win all 4 (2+ Wimbys and 2+ Hardcourt slams).
the difference is :
federer could beat everyone else
27 is closer to prime than 21, provide eaxamples though please...
yeah federer always out plays nadal he just finds a way to lose in the end
People peak and play at their prime at different ages. Look at the difference between say Boris Becker and Andre Agassi. Ivan Ljubicic was a late bloomer, but say Tracy Austin peaked really early. Not everybody is the same. Federers peak was 2005/2006/2007, and Nadal is peaking now.
Question for everyone on the board:
* Hypothetically speaking, let's say Pete Sampras had made it to more clay court finals in his career. However, whenever he made it to the finals...he couldn't get over the hump against Sergi Bruguerra. Unfortunately for Sampras, he could rarely get payback because Bruguera never made it deep at Wimbledon or US Open.
* So if this were the case, would we not consider Sampras the GOAT right now?
* Reality: Sampras owns a 2-3 record vs. Bruguera with one of his wins actually being on clay. I'm actually surprised they never played more than that.
If Pete would have been making grand slam final I think he would have found a way to get past Brugera, considering he wasn't a renowned clay courter and he still kept it close with Brugera with 2-3 h2h.
That's priceless coming from Pat Cash.
well...looking at tennis players this century....(since tennis is an evolving sport.....physical demand/skills requirements may be different in past era)..
players who is number 1 at 21 +/- 1 yrs
hewitt, safin, roddick, fed, nadal
players who is number 1 at 27 +/- 1 yrs old
this is just off the top of my head....i might have missed some....and cant remember if JCF was 22 or 23 when he became #1...in anycase, it's closer to 21 than 27..guga i think was 24 when he was number 1...
i agree...physical differences aside, i think partly depending on what sort of game they play...as i think S&V takes a bit longer to mature than the baseline bashers...although ur example of boom boom and agassi just flushed this theory down the toilet
Separate names with a comma.