The 10 Greatest Men's Seasons

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by ZeroSkid, Dec 8, 2011.

  1. ZeroSkid

    ZeroSkid Banned

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    #1
  2. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    I still don't know why anyone puts McEnroe's 1984 above Connors' 1974. Connors lost no big matches in 1974, while McEnroe lost 2 in 1984.
     
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  3. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    I would put Connors lower. I agree with Carlo that his record was inflated by playing mickey mouse tournaments. The Australian was poorly attended.

    Context is everything. Most people who make these lists just don't do their research.

    I think that Borg had three years (78, 79, 80), that were better than Connors in 1974.

    Borg always gets the shaft on these lists because he didn't play the AO. But was he less dominant than Wilander in 1988?

    No, of course not. He was much, much more dominant.

    Don't understand why McEnroe's 1981 is so high. It wasn't better than Fed in '05 or '04. It wasn't better than Borg in '78 or '80.

    And, of course, always shocking not to see Pete up there. But we know that his percentages weren't great. He just won the big ones.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
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  4. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Connors in 1974 won 3 majors and was banned from the other major. Had he played and won, no doubt it would have been there with Laver's 1969, but he was never given the chance. Connors won all his big matches that year, unlike McEnroe in 1984 who lost a French Open final from 2 sets up and lost a vital rubber in the Davis Cup final against Henrik Sundstrom.
     
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  5. DjokovicForTheWin

    DjokovicForTheWin Banned

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    No. 1: Roger Federer, 2006
    No. 2: John McEnroe, 1984
    No. 3: Jimmy Connors, 1974
    No. 4: Rod Laver, 1969
    No. 5: Roger Federer, 2004
    No. 6: Novak Djokovic, 2011
    No. 7: Roger Federer, 2007
    No. 8: Rafael Nadal, 2010
    No. 9: Roger Federer, 2005
    No. 10: Bjorn Borg, 1979
     
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  6. DjokovicForTheWin

    DjokovicForTheWin Banned

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    Didn't connors try to duck a lot of the competition?
     
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  7. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Who said that?
     
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  8. TopspinAce

    TopspinAce Rookie

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    Wheres Pistol Pete in this?
     
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  9. tennis_pro

    tennis_pro G.O.A.T.

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    it's hard to lose big matches if you're facing a 40-year old Rosewall in major finals
     
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  10. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    So who should he have been facing? Whoever you say, they either lost earlier in the tournament or didn't compete.
     
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  11. tennis_pro

    tennis_pro G.O.A.T.

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    The fact that a 40-year old player no matter how good he was in the past made it to the final of 2 (!!!) major finals in 1 year tells me all I need to know about the field.
     
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  12. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    I would have raised McEnroe's 1984 to #2. It is hard to fault him much for not playing/winning the Australian when that was the norm back then. It is too bad he didnt win the French otherwise his year would clearly be the best.

    I would have had Federer's 2005 there around #6 instead of his 2007. It is the only year that nearly matched McEnroe's 1984 W-L, even though it was marred by 2 semifinal defeats in majors and a loss in the WTF final. Still the overall level of play and performance was higher than 2004 or 2007 where he was far less dominant despite winning 3 slams.
     
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  13. DjokovicForTheWin

    DjokovicForTheWin Banned

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    Laver had 16 losses in 1969, really mars the grand slam. Kinda means he fluked out the slam, especially given that two of them went to 5 sets.
     
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  14. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    The better question is where's Fed 2004 fit in.

    Since Fed made the list twice, I think Stephen Tignor don't want to add another one for Fed, but rather include a different player to his list.
     
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  15. NadalAgassi

    NadalAgassi Guest

    The years listed were all rightfully better than Federer's 2004. Federer won 3 slams but had alot of horrible showings in significant events in 2004. 3rd round loss at the Olympics ,3rd round loss at the French, 1st round loss in Cincinnati, 2nd or 3rd round loss in Rome.
     
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  16. Carsomyr

    Carsomyr Hall of Fame

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    .....................
     
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  17. DjokovicForTheWin

    DjokovicForTheWin Banned

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    There you go. See above.
     
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  18. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    There's a saying, you beat who is in front of you. Any of the people he "should have faced" either lost earlier on in the tournament or didn't play.
     
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  19. ZeroSkid

    ZeroSkid Banned

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    I think it depends how much smaller tournaments are valued like is it better to get into a grand-slam semi final or final than win a masters
     
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  20. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Agree with you about Borg. His seasons were very dominant. Interesting that Lendl was left out also. Some of his years deserve consideration.
     
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  21. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    That one was the killer right there ...

    It just means he played his best when it mattered most.
     
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  22. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    The Australian was very poorly attended.
     
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  23. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

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    Forgot Lendl. His year in 1986 was better than Connors' 1974 as well.
     
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  24. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    How is that relevant? Connors won the Australian Open in 1974. He was banned from the French Open because of politics and failed with his legal action against the FTF to get the ban overturned.

    Connors' 1974 was vital for open tennis to finally stand on its own, away from the amateur/professional era, because Connors wasn't there in those days. It's the most important year in modern tennis, in my opinion. Borg, Vilas, McEnroe etc. soon joined him in creating a big boom in professional tennis.

    I disagree. A teenage Becker was regularly beating Lendl already, in Lendl's best ever year on the tour.
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2011
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  25. krosero

    krosero Legend

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    Obviously Connors missed out on a chance to win RG, but it wasn't the only big title he didn't win. He also didn't win the WCT Finals in Dallas, which was an enormous title back then. And that was because he chose not to join the WCT tour, which was probably the most demanding part of the entire tennis season -- instead choosing to play the Riordan tour which was far less demanding.

    So yeah, Connors' wins in '74 were important, but he wasn't participating in one of the things (WCT) that was creating the big boom in pro tennis. He just wasn't a part of that. Not in '74.

    Lendl went 2-3 against the #2 player in the world (I think you have them tied at 3-3 if you're counting the January Masters?) That's not at all unusual. Laver went 3-5 against Roche in '69.

    I'm not sure how Lendl's year is diminished by Becker's age. Becker was one of the most precocious champions of all time -- which is to Becker's credit. Does the fact that Becker was a teenager mean that he was not yet a great player, that Lendl lost 3 matches in '86 to someone who was not yet great?

    And one more thing I'm not clear on. You said it doesn't matter who Connors faced or did not face at the '74 AO. Presumably that means that we should just take his win-loss record for the year as it stands, without looking at opponents. But then why can't we just take Lendl's win-loss record for '86 as it stands? Why is it important to look at Lendl's opponents and how he did against them?
     
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  26. Carsomyr

    Carsomyr Hall of Fame

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    Context only matters when it helps your argument. :)
     
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  27. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    The fact remains that Connors lost no big match in 1974, and lost just 4 matches in total with well over 90 wins. He has to be given huge credit for that, and he was the benchmark standard of play for other players to match. Yes, Connors was a rebel and a "my way or the highway" sort of guy, but that brought in the spectators.

    I mentioned Becker in order to point out that Lendl's 1986 wasn't as good as Connors' 1974. Lendl's 1986 is still a fabulous year.

    Well, the Australian Open is one of the four majors, and that has always been the case since the 1920s or before. You've got to be in the tournament in order to win it. Connors won this and more "prestigious" tournaments at the time like Wimbledon and the US Open in 1974.

    Fine. Lendl lost the Wimbledon final, a big match-up. As I said before, Lendl's 1986 is a great year but I fail to see how it can be better than Connors' 1974 when he just didn't lose a big match.
     
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  28. Benhur

    Benhur Hall of Fame

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    Going over Connors record in 74 I must say it’s pretty awesome. As Mustard pointed out, none of his 5 losses are big ones, all rather trivial. I do agree that Lendl’s 86 was a heck of a year as well, and probably should be somewhere in that list. But of his 6 losses that year, 3 were to Becker, and the Wimbledon one is big. He made up for it somewhat in the end by winning the year-end Masters in impressive fashion, beating Edberg, Gomez, Noah, Wilander and Becker in succession without dropping a set. Still, I can’t really say the year as a whole was better than what Connors did in 74.
     
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  29. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Those lists are always difficult to make or change. Federer could be on the list with his 2005 year as well, although he won "only" 2 majors. Connors had a great year in 1974, which put him on the map. But he wasn't that far away from the others, as his match score indicates. He defaulted twice in the middle of tournaments, and - along with his manager Bill Riordan - picked his events very carefully. A potential Connors-Newk final at Forest Hills would have been effectively for the Nr 1 position in 1974; Rosewall spoiled it (to his own detriment). Borg's 1979 should be over Wilander's 1988. I think Wilander lost to Steeb in a crucial Davis Cup tie, and Borg just destroyed his opponents. With a standardized modern circuit with AO a prominent event, i believe, Borg possibly would have had 3 seasons in the range of Federer's. Three times he won the Channel double, and his only significant losses were at USO.
    In 1969, Laver was 4-5 to Roche, the fifth was a one set loss in a 3rd place play off at Tokyo. Roche won Auckland and Sydney and 2 US pro events, but Laver always won, when it mattered: AO semi, USO final, Philly final and Wembley final. Laver's promotional contract with NTL (George McCall) gave him no rest, he played 36 weeks non stop all around the world. Its good, that Tignor notes, that Laver beat some solid opposition in 1969. He beat Hall of famers, major winners and major finalists in 18 of his 26 GS matches. He won across all kinds of surfaces, grass (only majors), clay, hard court, indoor carpet, indoor hard. He won at least 4 Masters equivalents, too (Johannesburg, Philadelphia, US pro Boston and Wembley). And he was 7-1 over Rosewall and 4-1 over Newcombe for example. When his big left arm, which he packed into an ice-box, got warm, he could accelerate and fire winners anytime, it was demanded from him.
     
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  30. jean pierre

    jean pierre Semi-Pro

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    Where is Vilas 1977 ? He won 2 Grand Slams + 1 other Final + won 16 tournaments (record) and 46 matches consecutively (record) !
     
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  31. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    lol, when Laver wins it, Australian Open=Important, well-contested tourney.
    when Mcenroe doesn't=doesnt matter, nobody plays it anyway...
     
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  32. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    Excellent list!

    Yep. Clearly not as dominant as Fed's 2006 who only lost to 1 player (the murray loss doesn't really matter).

    Laver was pretty lucky he didn't have a Nadal or a Federer to stop him like Federer and Djokovic did...

    Have the jizztorians no shame?
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2011
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  33. Agassifan

    Agassifan Hall of Fame

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    LOL LOL. Winning 2 slams and tanking the entire clay season gets you nowhere near the Top 10.
     
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  34. Russeljones

    Russeljones G.O.A.T.

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    Laver played against amateurs to reach finals, that is the definition of a weak era.
     
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  35. GasquetGOAT

    GasquetGOAT Hall of Fame

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    lol indeed, Pete's best season would be somewhere in the 10-20 and below Rafa's 2008.
     
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  36. veritech

    veritech Hall of Fame

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    interesting how more than half of the years on the list belong to the top 3 guys on the tour right now.
     
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  37. Netzroller

    Netzroller Semi-Pro

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    I know some people will call me dumb for it but I would put Federer's 2006 over Lavers 69. The level of the sport was just so much higher, the Slams were played on 3 different surfaces as opposed to 2 (3*grass and 1*clay) and Federer had a much higher winning percentage.
     
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  38. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    No, there's nothing wrong in having Fed 06 above Laver 69. You are just being fair/reasonable by analyzing all the facts and details. But I know it fall on deaf ears to the Laver fans(anti-fed fans).
     
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  39. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    How many people did Rodney lose to in '69?
     
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  40. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Rod Laver lost in 1969 to:

    Tony Roche in Sydney
    Tony Roche in Auckland
    Tony Roche in Miami
    Tony Roche in Oakland
    John Newcombe at Queen's Club
    Raymond Moore in Los Angeles
    Stan Smith in Las Vegas
    Marty Riessen in Cologne
    Fred Stolle in Stockholm

    That's 6 different opponents. There may be others.
     
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  41. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    I thought he lost 15 or 16 times...
     
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  42. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    He probably did. The tour was a lot more chaotic in those days, not like now where there's a universal order to the tour.
     
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  43. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    According to the old-timers in here, they said he lost 16 times.
     
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  44. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    Hmmm...not as dominant as people would have you believe then...

    I guess in terms of pure dominance over contemporaries, Federer comes second only to Tilden really...
     
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  45. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    Laver was still a mile ahead of the opposition in 1969, because he always delivered when it mattered most. He held all 4 majors at the same time and won them all in the same calendar year, neither of which has been done since.
     
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  46. Steve132

    Steve132 Professional

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    Um .... most sane observers would agree that the majors and the YEC are, in fact, the five most important events in the tennis year. Federer in 2004 won three majors and the YEC. He also won three Masters events (Indian Wells, Hamburg and Toronto) and was unbeaten (18-0) against top ten players. His record for the year was 74-6 with 11 titles.

    Do you really want to compare Federer 2004 with, say, Wilander 1988? Wilander also won three majors, but only two Masters events and no YEC. He finished the year at 53-11 with 6 titles and far more bad losses (however defined ) than Federer did. Why should his year be considered better than Federer's 2004?

    Your bias is showing.
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2011
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  47. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    You don't say? He did both? What a revelation!

    Not very dominant though...maybe luck played a small part?

    Had there even existed the concept of the Grand Slam during his time, Tilden would have about 5-6 of them. A far superior player in his era compared to Laver.

    How Lavertards mindlessly claim Rodney is the goat is quite pathetic.
     
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  48. ZeroSkid

    ZeroSkid Banned

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    In Fed`s year there were more surfaces, and Federer had a much better record than Laver that year BUT Laver did win all 4 slams, it`s not like he chooses the surfaces, so Laver`s year has to be put ahead of Rogers because grand slams are more important than anything else in tennis
     
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  49. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    "Luck" would have played a far less part in the era of wooden racquets than it has in subsequent eras. You had to think a lot more and the maximum power you could hit in your shots was a hell of a lot less back in Laver's prime.
     
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  50. Mustard

    Mustard Talk Tennis Guru

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    What's annoying, though, is that Connors was prevented from having the chance of winning the calendar year Grand Slam by a load of politics. Had Connors played and won the French Open in 1974, that has to be a serious candidate for the best year in men's tennis history, but he was denied the opportunity.
     
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