Sampras builds the perfect player from his rivals

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by Michael Bluth, Jan 7, 2010.

  1. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Thanks for that link. I've found a couple of others:

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?i...&pg=5949,812569&dq=connors+ashe+injured&hl=en

    http://news.google.com/newspapers?i...&pg=973,1831109&dq=connors+ashe+injured&hl=en

    The injury certainly appears to be real, but I'm skeptical about how serious it was, for a few reasons. One is how well Connors played at Wimbledon. Riordan says the injury occurred in the first round. Okay, no problem. But we all know how impressive Jimmy was throughout the two weeks, how invincible he seemed. Just tonight I saw an article in which Jimmy said he was playing the best tennis of his life; and Tanner, before he lost to him, said that Connors was playing better than in the '74 USO.

    You may well be right that junk is more of a problem for someone with a leg injury. But returning Tanner's serves would certainly be difficult too, if the injury had been serious enough, yet by all accounts Jimmy returned them as if they were nothing.

    On July 16 Riordan told the press that it was questionable whether Connors would defend at the USO (according to the NY Times). But he started playing again at North Conway in early August (only four weeks after the W final), and beat Rosewall and Laver there in straight sets.

    All this was only a few weeks before the suit was settled between Connors and Ashe/Kramer/Dell, which also makes me wonder. All the parties involved were already engaged in a war of words, as parties in any legal struggle do, trying to gain whatever edge they can on each other. And while I think the injury was real, I wonder if Riordan's announcements to the press about the injury were part of the war of words between the legal parties. Riordan says that Jimmy didn't want to appear to be making excuses, but then why publicize the injury at all? He also says that the injury was serious enough to call into question whether Connors would defend at the USO, but how true was that?

    Anyway, I see your reasoning about how the injury might have helped Ashe. Fair enough. But Orantes beat Connors by slow-balling him, too. Borg had some success doing the same. A report I saw tonight mentioned how Jimmy's forehand failed him against Vilas at the USO. And so on.

    Of course Connors often beat these same players even when they tried the slow-balling tactics. Those matches are not remembered that way, simply because Connors overpowered his opponents (for example Orantes at the '77 USO). So it's complicated, and I agree with you that Bodo is over the top when he talks about a "glaring liability."

    But I'd still pick Ashe over a fully healthy Connors on that day.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2010
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  2. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    If you happen to come across more sources on this, by the way, send them my way. Injuries are an interesting topic in general, and so is this match in particular (it's one that I did stats for).
     
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  3. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Oh I agree with that. I dont' remember a player who relished adulation as much as Federer! However, that does not equate to mental toughness in my book. The two can have some relationship but they can also be completely exclusive.

    Odd. I don't know to whom you're specifically referring. In any case, even if one subscribed to that theory, it does not mean they have considered he was outplayed and simply rejected that theory. As for me, I don't care a great deal whether he won or lost, again, I feel that to be a rather undefinitive measure of his mental toughness. I think a number of us look at other factors as well.

    FROM ORIGINAL POST:
    You don't draw much of a distinction between the mental and the physical yet you argue that it's the MENTAL EDGE that seperates the top players....

    ....and on top of that, your original post accused people of assuming he mentally wilted when he was beaten (not true, of people in this thread anyways), but such an interpretation would be completely compatible wiht what your current claim that it is the mental edge that seperates him at key points.
     
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  4. 35ft6

    35ft6 Legend

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    In this case, I think it's related. It takes a special individual to love having a huge target on his back, who attracts huge crowds whenever he loses a set because people smell big upset yet still managed to have the best 3 years in a row in modern tennis history. You don't reach 22 or whatever Grand Slam finals in a row without having some serious mental fortitude. It's just not possible to be having that many on days in a row. He's been on the brink of defeat a few times during that time and somehow escaped every time. See next question:
    Like what?

    And if wins and losses, especially come back wins or close wins, aren't the best proof of mental toughness, what is? As in, name a player you think is exceptionally tough mentally but lost lots of big matches.
    I said that's what OTHER people were assuming. And yes, I do think what sets apart the top players is mostly mental.

    Do you agree?
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2010
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  5. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    I just finished saying it's related. It is not however, THE SAME. And using that as evidence of Federer's mental toughness is simply not sufficient.
    Again, a related concept but a kludgy one. Much more important is the WAY a player wins or loses. A player can lose a match and still have shown great toughness and vice versa. Nobody said that tough players don't win lots of big matches, that's a strawman.


    Oh so OTHER people were assuming that when Federer lost, he collapsed mentally....you agree with them then? You must given your premises that:
    1.mental toughness is what allows top players to win big matches
    2.winning and losing is the measure of mental toughness

    Again, I find all those points simplistic.

    Bottom line, many of us, when judging by the GOAT standards of mental toughness find Federer lacking. Saying he enjoyed being number one, or that he won many matches when at the top, is not convincing for us, we are all aware of that, we are also aware that those things apply to every GOAT contender. Nor does anyone dispute that he is a GOAT contender. He's just not a GOAT contender for mental toughness in the opinion of many.
     
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  6. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Arthur Ashe, when he was "on" his game was fantastic. On that day he would have beaten many of the all time greats imo and so it's very possible Ashe would have defeated Connors on that day if he was in the best of health. I agree with you.

    It amazes me that very few mention the injury to Connors before that final. I have to gave Connors credit that he never used it as an excuse for the loss.

    One match I regret never seeing is Connors' match against Tanner in the Wimbledon semi-final in 1975. From reading the accounts people were in awe of Connors' returns. One account said that Connors returned one of Tanner's serves at thrice the speed which I find hard to believe but it still must have been a great return. I'd be curious about Jimmy Connors' mobility in that match.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2010
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  7. 35ft6

    35ft6 Legend

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    Yo, Datacipher, you're not fun to discuss stuff with. I'm going to put you on ignore because to me you're Deuce Part 2. Not only do you seem to have serious memory and reading comprehension issues, even worse, you're just an unpleasant person. But I'll respond one last time.
    I was responding to the also be completely exclusive part.
    Well, if we agree on that, Fed has won more matches in the past few 7 years or so than anybody.
    Number 2 is the best measure, but my point from the beginning is that Fed can be mentally tough and still not win every match. It's just not possible. There has never been a number 1 player who has won all their matches. But I find Fed's winning record, especially in some years, remarkable, and indicative of great mental toughness.
    You're hardly making a point at all, though.
    Fine. I disagree. He's one of the mentally toughest guys out there. All of the guys mentioned as GOATS, and all the solid number 1's are mentally tough, and to me Federer is GOAT, and he couldn't dominated the way he has this past decade without incredible mental toughness. When you go ten years of winning so much when you're almost always playing somebody with nothing to lose against you, you're tough as nails.

    Anyway, you're on ignore. Having a civil discussion with you is difficult, you come off as such a cranky old lady. You never have anything interesting to say, I respond out of consideration, so better just to ignore. There are about 15 people on my ignore list, so don't feel special. Peace out, bro.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2010
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  8. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    It is a very good showing by Ashe considering clay was his worst surface. Funny but I think Ashe may have started to have the heel problems in which he was to have a procedure for. I think that's around the general time frame.

    I actually met Ashe around that time because he came to a local college to give a tennis clinic. His foot was in a cast due to the procedure on his heel. He really stressed the importance of having a good slice serve in that clinic. He could even hit a decent slice serve with a cast on his foot!
     
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  9. 10ACE

    10ACE Professional

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    List the players he played and considers rivals and then from them created an uber player
     
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  10. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    True, Ashe has 3 of the Slams, no French.
     
    #60
  11. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    If by not fun, you mean I take the time to breakdown your points logically one by one, then yes, I'm sure that's not fun for you. If your response is going to be a personal attacks, as above, then I agree the best thing for you to do, is not to respond.


    Have to love a person who throws a bunch of insults out, tells you he doesn't want to talk to you, then suddenly expects to start talking tennis again..

    Line 1: nobody disagreed with.
    Line 2: I stated line 2, it's all relative
    subnote: yes, we all know you think Federer is GOAT, it's completely irrelevent
    subnote: again, I think it's simplistic to think that you can distinguish between the mental toughness of GOATS by simply saying he dominated. Many/most of the GOATS did that.

    Again, the last line is totally irrational...I trust I need not explain to most people why. A better line might be "if you go ten years of winning so much, you're likely to eventually run into some people as tough as nails.". What you wrote....um....

    In any case, again, you're off on wild tangents, but I'd say Federer, and many other say, Fed has had a lack of a worthy rival for much of his reign. He DID run into players as tough as nails, but all lacked the physical tools to truly challenge him, which he, and everyone else knew. eg. Hewitt, Roddick, etc.

    LOL! Here's some insults...now let met talk tennis and try once more to try to defend the tangential points I made, which I only made because I reacted emotionally to an opionion on Federer which I disagree with...and let me end by saying, here's some more childish insults and you're on ignore, I'm plugging my ears now!!!

    Well, I think your last post is indeed, a great representation of your mentality. I am glad you won't be responding with the non-sequitur replies, but of course, I reserve the right to comment on incorrect or irrational statements I see you make.

    PS. Naturally one will inevitably run into people you disagree with. Some will be trolls, who are only there to argue. Others have actual opinions and points. How you deal with the latter is a telling reflection of yourself! Do you engage in point-by-point debate? Can you accept and/or concede if your points are shown to be irrational? Do you respond with unsolicited, juvenile insults? Do you feel the need to TELL people you're going to ignore them? (again, a rather silly move which only represents a laughable attempt to "hurt" somebody!). While these last behaviors are very common, and probably part of human nature, I'd say they represent the worst of us!
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2010
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