The tired excuse isn't valid, Vitas and Lendl played 130+ in a season

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by tennis-hero, May 20, 2009.

  1. tennis-hero

    tennis-hero Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    1,090
    Location:
    uk
    Lendl on three seperate years

    Vitas had a 130+ wins a season

    you can't use the tired excuse with a straight face, unless you're uncle phony
     
    #1
  2. l_gonzalez

    l_gonzalez Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    915
    Location:
    London
    Different eras mate, you can't compare the intensity of back then to the intensity now.

    Overall it's a much stronger field right now so i'm pretty sure those guys had a lot of physically easier matches than the current field have.
     
    #2
  3. tennis-hero

    tennis-hero Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    1,090
    Location:
    uk
    what did you smoke when you wrote that cos i want a tenners bag

    in the 70s and 80s IT WAS ALL ABOUT STAMINA

    we didn't have the CHEAT raquets that gave you a 100% sweet spot zone

    we had 100 shots rallies

    you had to be even more physically fit

    Borg is 100 times the athlete Nadal is
     
    #3
  4. maximo

    maximo Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2008
    Messages:
    3,327
    Location:
    London
    Troll.

    .

    .
     
    #4
  5. Winners or Errors

    Winners or Errors Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,552
    You just opened the can to an endless, impossible to prove, debate. Often, when someone says something like this, the posts quickly go up and the debate becomes heated.

    The fact that Lendl could post 130 wins without ever whining that he was tired, which I don't think he ever did, is hardly surprising given his training regimen, which was probably more stringent than Nadal's. I'd be curious to see a comparison, and am sure someone has done one...

    That Gerulaitis could do it, with his binge drinking, cheese-burger eating lifestyle is something else, but then Vitas was never really a grinder.

    It's not about the fitness. It's about the style. No matter how much Nadal trains or how good his physical condition is, he will invariably get tired because of his style. I don't think there's ever been a more accomplished defensive tennis player. Hopefully, he is planning his schedule in a way that allows him to maintain the highest level at the most important tournaments. If not, it's his own damned fault for playing the way he plays.

    I, for one, am sick of people whining about their hero being tired. As a huge Nadal fan, I like to see him play well, but I also recognize that the way he plays has limitations, and exhaustion may very well be one of them.
     
    #5
  6. l_gonzalez

    l_gonzalez Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    915
    Location:
    London
    actually i was smoking this awesome blend a Jamaican friend of mine gave me... but that's not the point.

    what i'm talking about is the gulf in quality between number 1 and 100... the gap was much wider.

    100 shot rallies and borg being 100 times fitter are the words ofa fanatic and i can't take you seriously or have a normal discussion with you based on that.

    all i was merely trying to say was that in any given tournament back in the day, Lendl or Vitas would have more relatively easy matches in the early rounds than players such as Nadal would do now.

    the semis and finals may have been gruelling encounters but before that the gulf in class and quality meant relatively easier matches for the top guys.
     
    #6
  7. jrachiever

    jrachiever Rookie

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2006
    Messages:
    217
    Lendl

    Nadal

    These are just the first two videos that popped up. The physical demands are different these days.

    I'm a fan of the game of tennis much moreso than of individual players. I watched the Nadal/Djokovic semi, thought it was a great match and couldn't imagine Nadal wouldn't be tired the next day. I watched the Nadal/Federer match and thought Nadal looked tired. I don't why this is so complicated.
     
    #7
  8. l_gonzalez

    l_gonzalez Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    915
    Location:
    London
    yeah mate, i know... i'm not about to get involved in some stupidly long and pointless debate like others do, but then again i can't just idly sit by and let ignorant, troll-like comments go unchallenged.
     
    #8
  9. l_gonzalez

    l_gonzalez Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    915
    Location:
    London
    thanks for those videos mate... rallies may have been long but i've got just one word:

    Footwork
     
    #9
  10. Winners or Errors

    Winners or Errors Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,552
    OK, I watched the videos. If you count the time from the shot coming off the player's racquet to the next ball strike, it is nearly identical between Borg-Lendl and Nadal-Djokovic. Of course, the shots in the Nadal-Djokovic rally were almost all short in comparison, landing around the service line because of the topspin, but to me it just looks like there's more grunting going on, not harder hitting. Someone can be smooth and still hit plenty hard.

    Looks like Borg and Lendl both simply were better ball strikers and had smoother strokes. Of course, given the tiny racquets they played with, that may be true on both accounts.
     
    #10
  11. GasquetGOAT

    GasquetGOAT Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2007
    Messages:
    3,372
    Great analysis.

    I can't believe Nadal is such a wuss compared to the older guys.
     
    #11
  12. AprilFool

    AprilFool Guest

    yes, but did they play at the altitude? :roll:
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2009
    #12
  13. S H O W S T O P P E R !

    S H O W S T O P P E R ! Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    1,938
    Location:
    In your thredz, stealin ur bukkits
    That was when S&V was the norm. Points only lasted 2-5 shots, while today 5 shots is the norm. Different eras.
     
    #13
  14. veroniquem

    veroniquem Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    31,084
    Location:
    New York
    Lendl and Gerulaitis (unless you meant Vilas?) also had losses in a season. On clay, Lendl was infinitely inferior to Nadal: he has never won more than 2 major clay events in the RG season, Monte-Carlo and Rome in 1988, Hamburg and RG in 1987. Compare that with Nadal winning 2 masters and a slam (3 major events) for (almost) 5 consecutive years.
    Lendl lacked Nadal's endurance and stamina to pull off anything even remotely similar to Nadal's prowess on a surface as uniquely demanding as clay.
     
    #14
  15. akv89

    akv89 Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2007
    Messages:
    1,587
    Lendl certainly isn't as talented as Nadal, but I think you're seriously underestimating the stamina of Lendl, who is credited with revolutionizing the training regimen of a tennis player.
     
    #15
  16. FloridaAG

    FloridaAG Professional

    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2008
    Messages:
    1,176
    Location:
    Hollywood/Key West, Florida
    C'mon - everyone knows that air was much cleaner back then so their lungs were in better shape so they had better endurance and did not get so tired. :twisted:

    Also, due to global warming, it is hotter now so Rafa gets more tired than they did :twisted:

    Also, the surfaces were much different back then - it was like playing in a spa, you could go one forever and never get tired :twisted:

    If they had to play now, they would be very very tired and could never play matches 2 days in a row if one them was a long match. Much too tiring.
     
    #16
  17. veroniquem

    veroniquem Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2008
    Messages:
    31,084
    Location:
    New York
    I forgot to mention scoring Queen's and Wimby in the wake of one of those phenomenal clay court seasons by Nadal, something Lendl wouldn't have been able to do in a million years!
    This being said I agree Lendl's fitness was exceptional for his time but I would say Borg's endurance was even more impressive.
     
    #17
  18. Gasquetrules

    Gasquetrules Semi-Pro

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2007
    Messages:
    414
    Lendl was supremely fit...

    Lendl did win several grasscourt tuneup events before Wimbledon during his career. He was a good grasscourt player. I believe he made a couple of Wimbledon finals, and this was at a time when some of the best grasscourt players of all time (McEnroe, Becker, Edberg) were in their prime.

    I actually compare Lendl to Federer. Federer's two biggest shots are his forehand and his serve -- exactly the same combination for Lendl. And both have/had very solid backhands. Lendl was an accomplished clay court player, like Federer, but not a clay court specialist. Both Lendl and Fed are perhaps best on hardcourts and indoors.

    But Lendl dominated the 80s more completely than Fed has dominated this decade.

    Rallies were not played at quite the pace they are today, but they are much longer. Check out the 82 French final between Borg and Lendl. 50 stroke rallies were the norm, with some going twice that. In the 87 US Open final, Lendl and Wilander played 30 and 40 stroke rallies throughout their long match on the fast US hardcourts. Connors and Borg had grinding rallies on every surface they faced each other.

    Regarding the disparity in the quality between the top 100 now and 30 years ago, I'd say Nadal wins his early round matches as convincingly and quickly as Borg or Lendl did. It's rare to find anyone who can average more than two games a set off Nadal on clay.
     
    #18
  19. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2004
    Messages:
    6,129
    It really is a strange thing how we always hear about all the advances made in physical conditionning, yet it was not rare decades ago for baseball pitchers like Satch Paige and numerous others to pitch a complete game, get in the car, drive 300 miles, then pitch another complete game that night. Complete games used to be commonplace, and you had guys like Bob Feller throwing 100 mph. Football players commonly played both ways in the early to mid 20th century. Even tennis players in the early "pro" days in the 50s and 60s would go from city to city and play every night. Has stamina taken such a huge step backwards??
     
    #19
  20. janipyt05

    janipyt05 Professional

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2005
    Messages:
    815
    you can't major one mans tiredness against another.
     
    #20
  21. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Messages:
    4,408
    Players these days are sissies.
     
    #21
  22. VilasFan

    VilasFan New User

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2009
    Messages:
    85
    Don't you mean Lendl and Guillermo Vilas? I don't think Vitas Gerulatis ever won 130+ matches in a year.
     
    #22
  23. tennis-hero

    tennis-hero Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    1,090
    Location:
    uk
    correct

    i had vitas in my head because i was "introduced" to some russian music by someone called vitas and i must have had the sound on my mind whilst making the thread
     
    #23
  24. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,662
    You're right, you can't compare. The matches were much longer then because the rallies were much longer, especially on clay, and in some cases there were no tiebreaks so a match could end up going 20-18, 5-7, 13-15, 12-10, 16-14.

    The rallies were much longer because they didn't have the modern powerful racquets to allow them to hit winners from the baseline. The way they played was to keep the ball in play until your opponent missed. The wood racquets also weighed a ton so it was much more physically exhausting to swing a heavy racquet for 6 hours than it is today with these lightweight racquets. And with wood racquets, you had to generate all of your own power as the racquet gave you nothing, unlike the rocket launchers they call tennis racquets today.

    Thus, the matches were MUCH MORE both physically and mentally exhausting back then since it is both physically and mentally exhausting to play a 6 hour match when almost every rally goes to at least 30 shots using heavy, powerless racquets.

    So I'd advise you to please get a clue.
     
    #24
  25. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,662
    Not true. Some of Borg's toughest matches at Wimbledon were in the early rounds. Same for McEnroe (he lost early many times and had to come back from 2 sets down and go to 8-6 in the 5th set to beat Darren Cahill in the 1st round in '89). When has that ever happened to Federer in an early round?

    In all the years that Borg played the French Open, he only lost twice, both times were in early rounds.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2009
    #25
  26. Dilettante

    Dilettante Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 13, 2005
    Messages:
    2,107
    Location:
    Katy Perry's belly button
    Guys, here you have a "CHEAT racquet" according to tennis-moron:


    "I'm gonna ACE your @ss 40-0, kid!"
    [​IMG]
     
    #26
  27. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2006
    Messages:
    5,997
    Wrong. The ball was slower back then and could not be hit as accurately with as much power as it is now with the new racquet technologies. Therefore it takes a hell of alot more athleticism to play Nadal's game successfully than what Borg had to deal with. I would say that Nadal is extremely athletic, however it takes its toll and so I believe he is tired. I don't see tired as a valid excuse either, but an inherent vulnerability in his game.
     
    #27
  28. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,662
    It's all that high-fructose corn syrup in modern diets today which are empty calories. People are also much lazier today in general. That's why they need the big powerful racquets to generate all the power for them. They're too lazy to have to generate all of their own power with a wood racquet. :shock:
     
    #28
  29. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Messages:
    4,408
    These guys hit the ball pretty hard.

    So did these.

    And these.
     
    #29
  30. Mick

    Mick Legend

    Joined:
    Jul 21, 2006
    Messages:
    8,363
    lendl's frame at the time was bigger than connors' and borg's frames and his frame was made of graphite :)

    [​IMG]
     
    #30
  31. VictorS.

    VictorS. Professional

    Joined:
    Jun 1, 2004
    Messages:
    1,227
    I laugh at people who think Lendl couldn't compete with today's players. He used to annilate guys like Andre Agassi & Jim Courier, albiet before they hit their stride. In addition, he played some tight matches with a prime Sampras in his early 30s. In fact, he beat Sampras at the age of 33 in Philly. Lendl wasn't exactly the quickest guy around but his groundies were rock solid & his conditioning was unreal. If you put the newer racket & string technology into consideration, I'm putting a prime Lendl in the top 5 of today's game easily, perhaps #1.
     
    #31
  32. big ted

    big ted Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    May 17, 2004
    Messages:
    1,862

    i agree, look at the footwork of lendl and borg.. half the time during rallies they could play flat-footed. you cant get away with that today..
     
    #32
  33. LurkingGod

    LurkingGod Rookie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2008
    Messages:
    300
    THANK YOU for injecting some simple common sense to the forum full of unprovable assumptions and irrational logics being used as 'facts'.

    If Nadal was tired then he was. What's the problem? If the other players played 400 matches per year without getting tired then kudos to them but it doesn't make any possible wear and tear on Nadal's body invalid. Since when it's a proveable fact that EVERY PLAYER has the same physical limitation and stamina?

    And it's funny how one minute people were talking about how physical Nadal's game was and how his body had to suffer for it and how it'd shorten his carreer but then when he proved they're right by showing the sign of exhaustion and injury the talking topic changed to "Nadal couldn't have been tired because (inserts the reasons)...".
     
    #33
  34. LurkingGod

    LurkingGod Rookie

    Joined:
    Oct 26, 2008
    Messages:
    300
    You should put "in my opinion" somewhere in your sentence because it'd make your statement look less stupid.
     
    #34
  35. swedechris

    swedechris Banned

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2004
    Messages:
    1,072

    And lets not forget either that in Florida the heat and humidity affects peoples judgement ,from time to time.
     
    #35
  36. Chelsea_Kiwi

    Chelsea_Kiwi Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    Messages:
    1,526
    Although tiredness is definatly not an excuse as stated before the intensity of today's game plus hardcourt overuse makes players more prone to injury but not tiredness unless we are not talking about professional athletes.
     
    #36
  37. tennis-hero

    tennis-hero Banned

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2008
    Messages:
    1,090
    Location:
    uk
    #37
  38. l_gonzalez

    l_gonzalez Professional

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2007
    Messages:
    915
    Location:
    London
    Exceptions to the rule can be found in every era. If you're a staunch believer that the quality of the entrie field (let's call it the top 100 for arguments sake) was the same back then (early 80's) as it is at the present time, then i'm sorry my friend but you're the one that has to get a clue.
     
    #38
  39. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Messages:
    4,408
    Actually, Borg's footwork in that video is impeccable. It's Lendl, however, who looks like trash. Understandably. It's deep in the fifth set of his first grand slam final. Borg's just getting the ball back because he knows Lendl will crack physically if not mentally. Lendl's tired, so he barely moves between shots. Context, people, context. It's like taking this video and saying, "Look, he's barely moving. You couldn't get away with that in the 70s."
     
    #39
  40. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Messages:
    4,408
    CONTEXT!!!


    You lack it.
     
    #40
  41. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

    Joined:
    May 3, 2004
    Messages:
    24,466
    Location:
    FT. Lauderdale, Florida
    The honest truth is Federer was exhausted, and still kicked the living snot out of Rafa.
     
    #41
  42. bolo

    bolo G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Messages:
    11,380
    That's a good point. I am sure there is a big overalp between the posters who say nadal couldn't have been tired and the posters who said nadal will have a short career. Nadal will be done at 22, no wait done at 25, no wait he couldn't have been tired it's not like he has a grinderish game that led me to predict a career ending injury. Not at all. lol.

    They just don't know what they want to say but at least it's good tv for the rest of us. :)
     
    #42
  43. fps

    fps Legend

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Messages:
    5,437
    Location:
    Brighton, England
    #43
  44. Winners or Errors

    Winners or Errors Hall of Fame

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2008
    Messages:
    1,552
    I don't think anyone is saying Nadal was not tired. What is being said, at least by me, is that being tired is not an excuse for losing. He set himself up to be in that position, so making excuses is silly. Hopefully, he will manage his schedule in such a way that he peaks at the right time and is tired at the right time, and perhaps that's just what he is doing.

    Of course, I am also quite certain that he would have preferred to keep his foot firmly on Federer's throat, and giving Federer some confidence by not being able to prevent him from winning at Madrid is the last thing he wanted to do. Hopefully, he won't be tired for the Roland Garros quarter-, semi-, or final.

    He has been at number one for less than a year. Defending all those points is already starting to wear on him. I am curious how long he will be able to last winning practically everything in sight. The fact that he is commenting on exhaustion himself is perhaps not a good sign for his fans.
     
    #44
  45. bolo

    bolo G.O.A.T.

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Messages:
    11,380
    Ofcourse it's not an excuse any reasonable poster would tell you that. I think your point about him peaking at the right time and is tired at the right time is a good one. His clay court results have been remarkably consistent every year which suggests he has a formula.

    Don't think this last result matters at all. Winning for nadal would have been a nice bonus after another dominant clay court season. If federer had miraculously dominated the clay court season this year that would have been something to think about. But now it looks like business as usual heading into RG for nadal.

    Actually nadal being tired in the 4th tournament of the clay court season is nothing new. Before imo he used to use the clay court season as his big push for the no. 1 because he was still only an average qf on the hard courts. But now imo he is maybe using the clay court season as insurance in case he has some bad unexpected showings in the latter part of the year.I expect two more excellent showings at RG and wimbledon and if he keeps to his usual post wimbledon schedule another late season fade come october.
     
    #45
  46. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

    Joined:
    Apr 19, 2005
    Messages:
    9,827
    Who the hell is making excuses and why?

    Nadal lost, Roger was better end of story quit going over all this BS LOL
     
    #46
  47. Blinkism

    Blinkism Legend

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2009
    Messages:
    8,598
    You know tennis-hero, I agreed with your first post but, IMO, this isn't true. Borg is not 100 times the athlete Nadal is. Borg had talent and athleticism, but I think what Nadal lacks relative to Borg in talent he makes up for in athleticism and is the superior of the two in physical fitness.
     
    #47
  48. CyBorg

    CyBorg Legend

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2007
    Messages:
    5,544
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    I love how folks pick YT videos to suit their arguments best.

    "Borg/Vilas sucked! Look at this video I just found in which Borg is playing the fifth set on very slow clay."

    "Borg/Vilas are awesome. Look at this video I found of them on a faster clay with great sound effects!"
     
    #48
  49. vtmike

    vtmike Banned

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2008
    Messages:
    2,658
    Location:
    Texas
    [​IMG]
     
    #49
  50. BreakPoint

    BreakPoint Bionic Poster

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2004
    Messages:
    43,662
    Due to the advances in modern racquets. strings, nutrition, conditioning, training, etc., EVERYONE is better today than they were 30 years ago. However, that doesn't mean that the top pros back then didn't have any competition. Today, the #1 player is still better than the #100 player, and it was the same back then.

    Didn't Boris Becker, the two-time defending champion lose in the 2nd round to #70th ranked Peter Doohan in 4 sets at the '87 Wimbledon? Has that ever happened to Federer at Wimbledon?
     
    #50

Share This Page