Sampras/Federer: 'The G.O.A.T' argument ended.

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Galactus, May 20, 2006.

  1. Galactus

    Galactus Banned

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    Federer is the most talented of the two, but in terms of 'greatest' and 'achievements', then Sampras is the only contender:
    Level of opposition, stats, Slams won, titles won, etc:

    Pete Sampras
    Level of opposition: Andre Agassi** (20-14); Jim Courier** (16-4); Goran Ivanisevic (12-6); Boris Becker** (12-7); Michael Chang (12-7) Patrick Rafter (12-4) **denotes multi-Slam winner
    Slams: 14
    AMS Masters: 11
    Masters Cup: 5
    Singles: 34
    No.1 for 286 weeks
    [f]Finished[/b] at No.1 for 6 years running
    Best year stats: 1994 (77-12: 2 Slams; 8 ATP titles)

    Roger Federer
    Level of opposition: Marat Safin** (7-2); Andy Roddick (10-1); Lleyton Hewitt** (11-7); Andre Agassi** (8-3)
    Slams: 7
    AMS Masters: 10
    Masters Cup: 2
    Singles: 19
    No.1 for 120 weeks
    [f]Will finish[/b] at No.1 for 3 years
    Best year: 2004 (77-6: 3 Slams; 8 ATP titles)
     
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  2. theprophe

    theprophe Rookie

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    Of course sampras is G.O.A.T, and he will be for 1 or 2 more years
     
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  3. Breaker

    Breaker Legend

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    Well of course Sampras is greater at the moment. Federer still has a few years left to prove himself and gather the titles and slams to match up or pass Sampras.
     
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  4. Max G.

    Max G. Hall of Fame

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    Clearly - you had your word, and that ends the argument. I think we'll all be quiet and go away now, the master hath spoken!
     
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  5. Galactus

    Galactus Banned

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    :mrgreen:
     
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  6. Mr.Federer

    Mr.Federer Hall of Fame

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    This is so stupid...Federer has still got at least 5 years of tennis left in him before he retires.
     
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  7. federerhoogenbandfan

    federerhoogenbandfan Banned

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    I agree. As much as I like Roger, I dont understand at all conversations on whether he is the best ever yet, only because he has not yet accomplished enough for that serious of consideration for it. I do think he deserves huge recognition, he is by far the best player in the World today, Nadal dominates him head to head, but Nadal is not consistent enough on hard courts reaching the end of touranments yet to be considered the best, so Roger is clearly the best player in the World today; and his 7 slams and dominat 04 and 05 seasons puts him on in the same realm as some great great players(Edberg, Becker, McEnroe, Lendl perhaps, Wilander). However GOAT arguments are a bit early.
     
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  8. Aykhan Mammadov

    Aykhan Mammadov Hall of Fame

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    All those are statistics. They mean much but not everything. We watched McEnroe, we watched Borg, Agassi and Sampras. And of course we are watching Federer.

    And do u want the whole world of tennis professionals and fans believe in statistics more than to their own eyes ? It is obvious that Federer is more talented player playing better tennis than anybody in the history before him.

    Statistics doesn't show all the realities of the time. For example Don Budge somwhen made Grand Slam, so what do u mean he played better tennis than Fed ? Or great player Rios was No1 but never won Slam, do u mean he doesn't worth recalling ?

    I think with years passing at least the quantity of people living on Earth is increasing radically, so every competition becomes harder. Coming to tennis number of players is increasing and tennis is booming now. Look at Russian players for example. Who they were? Now look how many players they have. Tennis becoming harder and harder, faster and faster, more competitive, and to win now 10 slams may mean winning 20 slams 40 years ago.

    Better ask Agassi who is better player Sampras or Roger. My opinion Roger is much more diversified player and more interesting to watch than Sampras.
     
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  9. Eviscerator

    Eviscerator Banned

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    Hmmm, I wonder how Laver is being left out of this discussion?:rolleyes:
     
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  10. sureshs

    sureshs Bionic Poster

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    I think the definition was narrowed to GOAT = best who could not win the French, so that Laver and Agassi are excluded by definition and Sampras and Federer are happily included and the discussion focuses on them only.
     
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  11. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    Federer is not the best ever. Not yet, anyway. Sampras is the greatest.

    And to call someone the best ever who doesn't have the stats to back it up, that really isn't fair to the guys that played with wood frames and dead strings. They couldn't rip through the ball effortlessly from the baseline like Federer. With a wooden racquet, Fed's game would be completely different.
     
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  12. federerhoogenbandfan

    federerhoogenbandfan Banned

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    I dont think Sampras is the greatest either personaly. I rate Borg, Laver, Gonzalez, and Rosewall all over him. Roger is even further down the list than that though. I would rate him over Becker and Edberg now though, and after this year I will almost certainly rate him over Wilander and Newcombe as well.
     
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  13. Eviscerator

    Eviscerator Banned

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    I did not see that stipulation in the OP, but maybe you know something that others do not:confused:

    While Federer might some day surpass Sampras or Laver, he cannot be put in that category yet. He has the potential, but until it happens, it is mere speculation.

    The bottom line is that you cannot have a discussion of who is the "GOAT" in men's tennis without naming arguably the best ever in Rod Laver.
     
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  14. DoubleHanded&LovinIt

    DoubleHanded&LovinIt Professional

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    Close, but no cigar would be an understatement.
     
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  15. Fischer76

    Fischer76 New User

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    People comparing RF with Sampras must be over their heads. At this time, he can be compared with Agassi. If and when RF reaches 13 GS then I think the comparison with PS would be in good order. When that happens, then a comparison on week as #1 should also be taken into account. I think that's a pretty stiff climb for RF. Very stiff indeed.
     
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  16. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    At this point, he still hasn't reached Agassi - hasn't gotten the same # of Slams (just one more), hasn't won as many Masters series tournaments (I think Agassi has won more than anyone), and hasn't proven that he can adapt to different generations of players. He's already having trouble with Nadal, and there are more newcomers to come.

    Agassi will be the first to say that Fed is the best he's ever played, but maybe he's basing that on Fed's streak against him. Older athletes never seem to be able to admit that they aren't what they used to be, especially when they are still very good. If Agassi had to play 1995 Pete Sampras today, he'd be just as hopeless.
     
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  17. Galactus

    Galactus Banned

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    I agree. Federer is technically the better player. But there's also the argument that states, 'Yes he is....but against inferior opposition'.
    But, let's say the wheels came off his wagon this year, his form dropped and he only won 2, maybe 3 more slams for the rest of his career......would he then be considered 'The G.O.A.T'?
     
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  18. Snooker

    Snooker New User

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    A comparison at the same age is the only appropriate comparison and it shows that both players are quite even in their achievements. Only time will tell if Fed can surpass Sampras in terms of winning titles etc.

    http://www.tennis28.com/studies/Federer_Sampras.html
     
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  19. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    An athlete's memory is short and Agassi saying Fed is much better, IMHO, is a proud athlete (Agassi) covering his rear that Fed has dominated and a proud athlete unwilling to accept the fact that he is 10 years past his prime. As for Fed being the GOAT; how can you make that case when he is being DOMINATED by a contemporary? An "in his prime" Fed being dominated by Nadal who will only get better? Sampras had a losing head to head record against a few players but never in important matches like Masters Series or Grand Slams tournaments and never in his prime. Safin's, Hewitt's and Fed's wins all came during the downslide of Pete's career. A wise man once said; "The hammer and the nail are not rivals". For the moment, Nadal=Hammer and Fed=Nail. That's a hard thing for me to say, because I much prefer Fed and his game to Nadal's ping pong game but it's the truth. Fed is still the man because he wins the most Slams, accrues the most points, etc., but he has a big Achilles' Heel named Nadal.
     
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  20. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    He just hasn't proven that he can handle the younger, flashier players that come along as he gets older and goes through the same tennis season over and over. Sampras didn't care who was on the other side of the net. His game worked against anyone, and if he wanted it bad enough, he would win. He stopped wanting it as bad once he was older and was tired of tennis. Agassi wanted it more and more to make up for lost time, and it's taken some pretty long-term injuries to finally slow him down. Only after Fed retires will we be able to assess his all-time position. For now, he's just the undisputed #1 and will easily go into the Hall of Fame.
     
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  21. Galactus

    Galactus Banned

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    Good point. Federer is currently 1-5 down against Nadal.
    I don't ever recall Sampras running into a player he got contsistently beaten by like this...and in finals too. Micheal Stich (4-5) and Paul Haarhuis (1-3) got good results against him, but Richard Krajicek (4-6) is the only guy apart from Andre Agassi who got 4 straight wins against him in his prime (and none were in finals)...
     
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  22. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    If sampras were good enough to make it to a clay court masters series final (more than once) maybe this would have happened. Sampras either won a weak field (like his italian open title) or lost early. While fed consistently goes the distance.

    Its funny how people discredit agassi because they disagree with his opinions. Its like they know more than the guys who were actually on the court playing against both. Its pretty laughable actually.

    5-1 isnt domination. Nadal is still young and full of fire. Lets see how his physical game holds up over the next few years. Also people are forgetting that fed/nadal matches are played on even surfaces or surfaces that give nadal an edge. Fed vs nadal on fast hard court or grass would be a different story. But, nadal cant make it to the finals in those events so they never happen. Where as fed can make it to the finals on his off surfaces.

    Greatest acheivements goes to sampras until someone can pass his records (which arent that great when you look at his draws, then again americans always seem to get favorable ones at the us open). The better player though is fed, as your own eyes can see, as agassi and moya have told you, and proven by their head to head record.
     
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  23. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    No one's discrediting Agassi's opinion. I also think that Federer is better overall than Sampras, at least for the moment. He has the advantage of better strings, but maybe he's also more talented. But I don't believe what Agassi said about there being a place to go with Sampras, whereas with Fed there's no chance. To me it seemed like Agassi was on his way to winning that US Open title against Federer, whereas in 2002 he seemed amazed that he even won a set. Sampras gave him absolutely no room to breathe. Agassi made these comments in a press conference immediately after losing the US Open, he was 35, Fed had a big winning streak against him...what other conclusion could there be other than Fed is just the best of all time? I think there's more to it. He is obviously the best guy to ask since he actually played these guys, but the fans watched these guys from a different perspective, and we can actually see things that they might have missed. We have points and shots memorized that they don't even remember. I've never seen Agassi's eyes wider and more alert than when he's playing Sampras. But maybe he didn't notice that.
     
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  24. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    Ill take the modern agassi over the one sampras was beating in the 90's. 30more mph on the serve, and an average of 20 on the groundies. Some say steriods/hgh others say he hit the weights, either way his fitness went way up along with his strength. Just watch that 1991 (i think us open final) its like a barry bonds on the pirates compared to bonds on the giants.

    Agassi is much better now (well last year, this year the atp is no longer doing their own testing so its not real easy to hide, thus agassi's inability to play) than he was 10 years ago.
     
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  25. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    Chadwixx, would you take the Washington Wizards Jordan or the Chicago Bulls Jordan? The Arizona Cardinals Emmitt Smith or the Cowboys version? Jordan said he still thought he was a top 5 player while with the Wizards. Yeah, right. Just like the people that say King James is better than Jordan at this stage. Play a little D and nail 100's of game-winning shots and we'll talk. I'll take the Agassi of 1999 over any version. And guess what? Sampras still smoked him when it counted. And 30 more mph on the serve? Was Agassi serving 95 or 100mph in the 90's? Was he playing the WTA tour or the ATP?

    5-1 isn't domination? Losing 80% of your matches against an opponent isn't domination? A 1-5 record while you are in your prime and your opponent is just coming into his own? The fast vs. slow hard court argument is ridiculous as well. If Fed is really the second coming, he should be winning the hard court matches, no matter the speed. Clay is another matter.

    I won't concede that Fed is the greatest player ever until he passes Sampras' records. Just because Sampras didn't possess the complete game of Fed, doesn't mean he wouldn't have beaten Fed regularly. Unfortunately, we'll never know.
     
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  26. Galactus

    Galactus Banned

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    [​IMG]
     
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  27. Grimjack

    Grimjack Banned

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    The missing part of the argument is that Sampras would have been utterly dominated by...just to pick a name from the era...Gustavo Kuerten, had he consistently met him in the finals of clay tournaments.

    But Pete was nowhere near good enough to get that deep in clay tournaments. Fed is.

    Fed dominates the rest of the year in even more impressive fashion than Pete did, AND gets to the finals of virtually every clay court event, now. Nadal doesn't "dominate" him. The results are skewed because while Roger justifies his seed by getting to the end of every clay tourney, Nadal doesn't, by coming up short everywhere else for most of the year.

    The way to dominate is not simply to dominate head-to-head. Federer can't be blamed for Nadal's inability to step up and challenge him at three of the four slams. When Nadal rolls over at those venues, Fed DOES dominate him. It shows up in the history books, and it shows up in the rankings. It simply doesn't show up in the h2h results, because Nadal isn't competitive enough to make that happen.

    As it stands, Pete had a 2-1 advantage over Guga, all on hard. If he had ended his career with a 9-2 deficit against GK, including 0-7 on clay, all in semis and finals, his career would have been stronger. Despite being "dominated." As it was, he simply wasn't relevant enough on clay to amass losing records against the best claycourters.
     
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  28. Grimjack

    Grimjack Banned

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    That said, it appears to me that Fed has also now pretty much worked out the Nadal puzzle on clay.

    So I'd expect those results to get even closer in the upcoming seasons (with a continued lack of competitiveness from Nadal at most other venues). All of which will put Fed's relative dominance even FURTHER ahead of Petey's.
     
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  29. AAAA

    AAAA Hall of Fame

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    If we can't make the case because Fed is being dominated by ONE comtemporary then the case for Sampras is blown to a thousand pieces by his career long failure to even make one French open final, let alone win one, and loosing early, by round 3, in several French Opens to low seeded and unseeded players is a bigger more tender and vulnerable achilles heel.
     
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  30. RiosTheGenius

    RiosTheGenius Hall of Fame

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    well, there is many people out there who seem to think that tennis started in the 90s. .
     
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  31. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    AAAA, at this point in time, Fed hasn't gotten any further at RG than Pete. All is takes is 5 minutes of research on www.atptennis.com to find Pete's record against the clay court giants of his day.
    9-2 against Muster, including a win at RG in their lone clay match
    1-1 on clay against Bruguera at RG
    3-1 against Moya, all on hard, including that "slow" Aussie Open court
    2-2 on clay against Kafelnikov (11-2 overall)
    1-1 on clay against Courier, with Pete notching a win at RG (16-4 overall)
    2-3 against Agassi on clay (20-14 overall, 5-1 in Slams)
    5-0 against Albert Costa, including a win at RG
    2-1 against Kuerten, no clay matches
    With the exception of Bruguera, Sampras dominated the above on faster courts. His record against Agassi is less than dominant, but when it mattered, Pete turned it on.
    Fed will work out the Nadal puzzle when he wins a match on clay.
     
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  32. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    I wonder whats harder, pete's serve, or his fans heads :)
     
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  33. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    Once again (see numerous threads involving Rabbit, Dedans, etc.), Chady Boy, you won't let good old facts and stats get in the way of your viewpoint. It's like speaking English to a Martian.
     
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  34. !Tym

    !Tym Hall of Fame

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    I agree, but this is the fan in me speaking.

    Actually, Bruguera called the loss to Sampras the most frustrating of his career because he blew so many break chances. He dropped into the 80s that year in the rankings, was injured, and not in good shape at all for that match against Sampras, plus the courts played unusually quickly that year...and yet, still, Sampras barely won that match.

    I think under more normal conditions, Bruguera would have taken that match at RG.

    But other than that, the reason Sampras had good success against a guy like Muster was that Muster like many clay courters were relatively weak returners against big servers. Bruguera was the only one of the clay court guys mentioned, aside from Kafelnikov, who I consider more of an all-courter who didn't really have enough of any one great attribute or style to dominate on anyone surface, but instead be very, very good on every surface, and thus if the top dog or whoever on that surface wasn't at his best, he could win the tournie; but if the top dog was at his best, he probably wouldn't.

    Anyway, other than Kafelnikov, of all those guys, only Bruguera hugged the baseline to return Sampras' serves. Unlike say Muster or Costa or Kuerten, he didn't stand way back to take the full swing on the backhand. Bruguera's backhand return was one of the best, and he could take it off the rise on this side very well on the return. His problem was on the forehand side. Against other baseliners, he'd typically stand far back to return like all the other clay courters with huge looping swings do. However, against a big server or net rusher, he'd change strategies and stand very close, taking his chances with his chip forehand return. This was a decent trade-off, because against net rushers, he could chip it low at their feet, or use their pace against them by simply blocking it back deep the way Federer does, plus you have to factor in the importance of cutting off a big servers angles. Muster would stand so far back to return against big servers to get his normal cut in, yet even if he did get the full cut in, against a net rusher and/or big server who was on, he could get himself in big trouble anyway, virtually conceding the point, because though he may have been able to get good pace and spin back on the return by getting his full cut in, he'd also be swung out so wide and so deep that he'd have no chance to recover for the ensuing volley.

    So in Bruguera's case, he could get by with trading off his "big" spinny forehand, for a dinky chip against the bigger servers/net rushers; his strong backhand return not being affected by this. Yet, against an aggressive baseliner who was "on," he could get in trouble by chipping it back. It's I think actually a far more effective type of return against big servers or net rushers, and it's under utilized in my opinion; which I don't get since it's something virtually anyone can pick-up, the technique being as exceedingly simple as it is.
     
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  35. federerhoogenbandfan

    federerhoogenbandfan Banned

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    Roger has a great record against all the clay courters in the game today minus Nadal, and Kuerten, however all his matches with Kuerten except one were before his first slam title, and his only match with Kuerten since was on clay and a fluky win for Kuerten.
     
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  36. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    Im just saying you completely missed the point me and grimjack stated. As proven by your follow up post.
     
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  37. The tennis guy

    The tennis guy Hall of Fame

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    Federer hasn't played Nadal on any fast court. By the way, of all players you listed that Sampras beat on clay, do you think any one of them is as good as Nadal on clay? Nadal is even with all time clay court winning streak.

    You can say anything about Sampras on other surfaces, but his clay court record wasn't that good. He wasn't able to win consistently on clay as Federer right now.

    I haven't heard any serious person saying Federer is the greatest player of all time at this point.
     
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  38. federerhoogenbandfan

    federerhoogenbandfan Banned

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    Just curious, which of the hard court events of the year do you consider "medium-faster hard courts" and which do you consider "slower-medium hard courts"? I know the obvious ones, like the Australian Open being a slower hard court, as well as all the pre-Australian hard court events; and the U.S Open is a very fast hard court, but it seems like all the other hard court events are being referred to by people as "slow hard court" events these days.

    I think only Muster, Ferrero, or Kuerten might, and maybe that is being generous, come close to Nadal ability-wise on clay of players in the last 15 years. Sampras only played Muster twice on clay, not enough to come up with much basis on, never played Kuerten or Ferrero on it either. Nadal is far ahead of any of the others players on that list on clay, and in general(except for Agassi on non-clay surfaces of course).
     
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  39. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    What point would that be, Chadwixx? The tour is deeper than ever these days but it's deep with mediocrity. Top to bottom, it's better but the cream of today is not equal to the cream of Pete's time, as mentioned in the beginning of this thread.

    And this whole fast hard court, slow hard court business is bologna. Certain courts play faster than others but a hard court of any speed/composition is far different than a clay, carpet or grass court.

    Tennis Guy,

    At this point in Nadal's career (he may develop into a world-beater, who knows), I would take Courier and Agassi over Nadal in a RG final. AA and Jim could handle that high spinner to the backhand. In their prime(s), both were just as and likely more fit than Nadal, could impose their will as easily as Nadal and had bigger serves.

    Excellent points, as always, !Tym.
     
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  40. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    Thats just insanity (the agassi part). Betting on agassi in a gs final is just plain silly. Unless the guy he is playing is a journeyman, as in 7 of his 8 gs titles.

    Vs weak competition (Wins)

    Year Championship Opponent in Final Score in Final
    1992 Wimbledon Goran Ivanišević 6-7, 6-4, 6-4, 1-6, 6-4
    1994 US Open Michael Stich 6-1, 7-6, 7-5
    1995 Australian Open Pete Sampras 4-6, 6-1, 7-6, 6-4
    1999 French Open Andrei Medvedev 1-6, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4
    1999 US Open Todd Martin 6-4, 6-7, 6-7, 6-3, 6-2
    2000 Australian Open Yevgeny Kafelnikov 3-6, 6-3, 6-2, 6-4
    2001 Australian Open Arnaud Clement 6-4, 6-2, 6-2
    2003 Australian Open Rainer Schuettler 6-2, 6-2, 6-1

    Vs strong competition (Losses)(except the first french where he choked)

    1990 French Open Andres Gomez 6-3, 2-6, 6-4, 6-4
    1990 US Open Pete Sampras 6-4, 6-3, 6-2
    1991 French Open Jim Courier 3-6, 6-4, 2-6, 6-1, 6-4
    1995 US Open Pete Sampras 6-4, 6-3, 4-6, 7-5
    1999 Wimbledon Pete Sampras 6-3, 6-4, 7-5
    2002 US Open Pete Sampras 6-3, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4
    2005 US Open Roger Federer 6-3, 2-6, 7-6, 6-1
     
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  41. federerhoogenbandfan

    federerhoogenbandfan Banned

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    At this point in Nadal's career (he may develop into a world-beater, who knows), I would take Courier and Agassi over Nadal in a RG final. AA and Jim could handle that high spinner to the backhand. In their prime(s), both were just as and likely more fit than Nadal, could impose their will as easily as Nadal and had bigger serves.

    My sister and I who were both on the computer reading this at the same time could not stop laughing when we read this. It took a few drinks to curb the laughter after about 5 minutes. Especialy when we realized somebody actually was serious in saying this. :mrgreen:
     
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  42. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    You and your sister do a lot of drinking together do you?
     
    #42
  43. superman1

    superman1 Legend

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    I think you laughed a bit too much. It's certainly not laughable to think that one of the greatest players of all time (Agassi) in his prime could beat Nadal on clay.

    I do disagree that they were more fit than Nadal - Nadal is one of the best athletes in tennis history - but they were better players. Maybe in 10 years Nadal will be considered a better player than Courier, but I highly doubt he'll ever be considered better than Agassi.
     
    #43
  44. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    Sampras on clay

    There has been much speculation about Sampras and his ability or lack thereof on clay. He would have been dominated... For the record, here is what Sampras did on clay and how well his conqueror went on to do in that tournament.

    1989
    Rome Lost to Agassi, Agassi on to finals
    Roland Garros - lost to Chang, Chang went on to win

    1990
    Munich - Lost to Svensson who went on to SF

    1991
    Hamburg lost to Novacek who was eventual winner
    Rome lost to Santoro who lost in QF to Bruguera
    Roland Garros lost to Champion who lost in next round

    1992
    Nice lost in semis to eventual winner Markus
    Monte Carlo - lost to Steeb who went on to QF
    Atlanta Finals lost to Agassi
    Rome, lost to Korda in QF, Korda lost in S
    Roland Garros lost in QF to Agassi who lost in SF

    1993
    Atlanta lost in semis to Eltingh who won it
    Rome, lost to Goran Ivanisevic in semis, Goran lost to Courier in finals
    World Team Cup, won over Stich
    Roland Garros - lost in QF to Bruguera who won it

    1994
    Rome - won over Becker
    World Team Cup lost to Stich in finals
    Roland Garros lost in QF to Courier who lost in SF to champion

    1995
    Davis Cup away at Italy, 2 - 0, won both matches
    Barcelona lost R32 to Gross who lost next round
    Monte Carlo lost R32 to Haarhuis who lost in next round
    Hamburg, lost in SF to Medvedev who won it
    Rome, lost in R64 to Santoro who lost in R16
    Roland Garros - lost in R64 to Shaller
    Davis Cup - 2 - 0 wins over Chesnekov/Kafelnikov on clay

    1996
    World Team Cup - lost to Kafelnikov
    Roland Garros - SF loss to Kafelnikov who went on to win

    1997
    Monte Carlo - R64 Larsson who lost in QF
    Rome - R64 to Courier who lost in QF
    World Team Cup - lost to Scud
    Roland Garros - R32 lost to Larsson who lost in QF

    1998
    Monte Carlo - R64 defeated Agassi then lost to Santoro who went on to QF
    Atlanta - won over Stoltenberg
    Rome - R16 to Chang who lost in QF
    Roland Garros - R64 to Delgado who lost in R16

    1999
    Rome R32 to Meligeni who lost in next round
    World Team Cup lost to Rafter
    Roland Garros - R64 Medvedev who went on to Finals

    2000
    Hamburg R32 to Di Pasquale who lost in next round
    WTC 0 - 3
    Roalnd Garros lost to Scud who lost in R16

    2001
    Rome - lost in R64 to Levy who went on to QF
    Hamburg - R64
    WTC - 2 - 1
    Roland Garros - R64 to Blanco who went on to R16

    2002
    Houston lost finals to Roddick
    Hamburg made it to SF
    WTC - 1 - 2
    Roalnd Garros lost R128 to Gaudenzi who went on to R32

    What we can tell is that Sampras played a minimal clay court season. We can also see that the majority of the time, the guy who beat him went on to lose in the later rounds, if not the final. While Sampras clearly wasn't dominant on clay like he was on grass and hard, his record is still more than respectable.

    I don't know, but this doesn't look bad for a guy who allegedly sucked on clay.
     
    #44
  45. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    I don't think that's entirely true. Check out this thread:

    http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showthread.php?t=100771

    I did the research from atptennis, there were a ton of upsets from round 1 on throughout slams the entire 90s. I just limited the list to top 200 players that beat seeds. I tried to do top 100 as well, but got tired. I was a huge list.
     
    #45
  46. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    I think there's a difference between being very athletic & being very fit. Sure Nadal is fit, but compared to Lendl, Muster, Courier? Their training regimens are well documented, they were insane. Courier went for long runs after 5 setters. Remember those Nike commercials with him working out(running, while dragging a tire behind him)
    Some fitness mag in the 90s ranked him among the fittest athletes in the world.

    For sure nadal is a more a talented tennis player, but he is not fitter. He has talked about his workouts, he really isn't doing anything crazy, doesn't so much weight training. He is just a kid, really. I'm sure he'll get more serious about his fitness as he gets older(hopefully not too serious. Muster & Courier trained too much & burned out)
     
    #46
  47. Rabbit

    Rabbit G.O.A.T.

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    I agree with Moose. Nadal is kinda like Noah. I remember Mary Carillo calling Yannick Noah the most "out of shape in-shape guy on the tour". That's not to say that Nadal is out of shape by any means, but he did tire against Federer in the Miami final. I understand his fitness has improved, but to rank him with Courier is a stretch IMO.

    Also, Lendl compared his day to today's players. One very valid point he made was that matches, especially those on clay, were much longer and required more of a marathoner type athleticism.
     
    #47
  48. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    Do you realize how good Courier was on clay? He thoroughly dominated the '92 French beating many claycourt specialists that stand way back like Nadal. He was a huge favorite to 3 peat in '93. He didn't play as much on clay as the Europeans, but I think Courier at his best on clay would be a formidable opponent for anyone.

    Check out the guys he beat & the scores. Compare to Nadal's victories:

    1992 Rome
    64 W Thomas MUSTER (AUT) 7-6 6-4
    32 W Francisco CLAVET (ESP) 6-2 6-2
    16 W Sergio BRUGUERA (ESP) 6-3 6-2
    QF W Cristian MINIUSSI (ARG) 4-6 6-4 6-1
    SF W Carl-Uwe STEEB (GER) 5-7 6-1 6-2
    FR W Carlos COSTA (ESP) 7-6 6-0 6-4

    1992 Roland Garros
    128 W Niclas KROON (SWE) 7-6 6-4 6-2
    64 W Thomas MUSTER (AUT) 6-1 6-4 6-4
    32 W Alberto MANCINI (ARG) 6-4 6-2 6-0
    16 W Andrei MEDVEDEV (UKR) 6-1 6-4 6-2
    QF W Goran IVANISEVIC (YUG) 6-2 6-1 2-6 7-5
    SF W Andre AGASSI (USA) 6-3 6-2 6-2
    FR W Petr KORDA (TCH) 7-5 6-2 6-1

    1993 Rome
    64 W Horacio DE LA PENA (ARG) 6-2 6-1
    32 W Paul HAARHUIS (NED) 6-3 2-6 6-0
    16 W Fabrice SANTORO (FRA) 6-3 6-3
    QF W Sergio BRUGUERA (ESP) 6-3 6-4
    SF W Michael CHANG (USA) 6-2 6-7 6-0
    FR W Goran IVANISEVIC (CRO) 6-1 6-2 6-2

    Nadal's FO Run:
    128 W Lars BURGSMULLER (GER) 6-1 7-6(4) 6-1
    64 W Xavier MALISSE (BEL) 6-2 6-2 6-4
    32 W Richard GASQUET (FRA) 6-4 6-3 6-2
    16 W Sebastien GROSJEAN (FRA) 6-4 3-6 6-0 6-3
    QF W David FERRER (ESP) 7-5 6-2 6-0
    SF W Roger FEDERER (SUI) 6-3 4-6 6-4 6-3
    FR W Mariano PUERTA (ARG) 6-7(6) 6-3 6-1 7-5

    Not quite as dominating, huh? And not as many great clay players compared to Courier's list.
    He destroyed Muster, Mancini, Medvedev back to back at the '92 French! Unreal. It was like the twilight zone, a time wheh an American was the greatest dirtballer on the planet.
     
    #48
  49. The tennis guy

    The tennis guy Hall of Fame

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    Currently, almost all outdoor hardcourts first half of the year are slow to medium by design from ATP, outdoor hardcourts second half of the year are medium to fast.

    Australia Open used to be medium fast soft hardcourt. No idea why they slowed them down recently detrimental to their own players. Paul M. has resigned over this, hopefully they speed the courts back to 90s and early 2000s speed.
     
    #49
  50. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    He can play 5 set tiebreakers consistently that go over 5hrs but these guys say his fitness is questionable, k.
     
    #50

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