Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by MonkeyBoy, Mar 16, 2013.
...and Federer could not win the Grand Slam, so he does not measure up to Laver.
Do you really believe Rod Laver could beat Rafael Nadal in a French Open final? If you do, you are delusional. Don't give me any BS about "you can only beat the competition in front of you". If Laver had to get through Nadal to win the Grand Slam, he wouldn't have won it either.
If you put a Dunlop Maxply in Nadal's hands -- like Laver used -- I am pretty sure Laver wins that match.
If Nadal was raised and trained in that era, would he have been able to beat Laver? If Laver were raised in this era, would he be able to beat Nadal? Nobody can say one way or the other.
That may all be true but Nadal has dominated clay like no one else, not even Borg. Laver didn't face such a dominant clay court player when he won the grand slam.
The point is that Laver didn't have to face someone who is as unbeatable as it gets at Roland Garros. Nadal's dominance at that major is greater than anyone else in tennis history, its unfair to fault Federer for being unable to beat him there.
That is true. But he certainly did face dominant players on other surfaces. Newcombe, Roche, Emerson, and Fraser weren't exactly pushovers.
But one thing you can't say for sure... would Nadal have been able to beat Borg several times in a row? Would Nadal have been able to beat Lendl several times in a row? In their era with that equipment? How about vice versa?
You need to look at this another way. Laver WAS Nadal back then. It was impossible to be greater than he was. On all surfaces. He had very stiff competition on grass.
I'm not faulting Federer for anything. The guy is one of the top players ever. That is no small feat. So is Nadal.
But people cannot sit there and say that Laver faced a weak field in 1969. Good god, the guy played Rosewall, Roche, and Newcombe. Those aren't exactly weak names. Certainly better names than Roddick, Soderling, Baghdatis, Murray, and Hewitt.
All Federer had to do in 2009 is beat Nadal on hardcourt in the AO. People need to go back and watch that fifth set. Because IMHO that was his moment to come through.
Well said. Laver played against many legends.
Federer dominated everyone he played against in his prime except for the greatest surface player in the history of the sport. No one comes close to Nadal on clay, not Sampras on grass or Borg on clay. Laver would not be able to win the Grand Slam if he had to go through such a monster at Roland Garros.
Could Laver beat prime Nadal in a RG final? Highly unlikely. Could he beat a 18 and 19 year old nowhere near prime Nadal at RG who peak of peaks Federer still couldnt come close to beating in 2005 and 2006? Quite possibly. We will never know for certain but it is certainly within the realm of possabilities enough to not dismiss Laver's Grand Slams on that basis.
Anyway bringing competition into the equation is no good thing for Federer. Most of Federer's records on grass and hard courts (especialy grass) are largely based on extremely weak competition, and Federer fanboys dismiss that with the same "you can only beat the competition in front of you" argument, so that is the last place you can go when it comes to Federer.
Which under what Federer fans define as his prime (2004-2007) was absolutely nothing except for Nadal at Wimbledon 2007 perhaps. The best he faced was Roddick and Hewitt, and even they were only really good for 12-18 months of Federer's "prime" at most. Nadal was a rubbish hard court player until 2008 atleast, and a rubbish grass court player until 2007; and his making Wimbledon 2006 final when he was so incredibly weak on grass he had lost to two 100 something nobodies his last 2 completed tournaments on grass, and should have lost in straight sets to Robert Kendrick at Wimbledon without Kendrick choking is just proof of the extraordinary weakness of the field (especialy grass field) then. A young Nadal on clay was the only strong competition he faced anywhere in his so called prime, and he always fell.
Roddick in 04 and 09, Rafa in 06 and 07 and Murray in 12 were all good wins against great grass court players. That's 5 of his 7.
Rafa in 2006 a good win, LOL! Murray the guy who was 0-9 in sets in slam finals going into that Wimbledon final. A past his prime Roddick in 2009. At most he had 2 somewhat strong opponents he beat Roddick in 2004 and Nadal in 2007, that is it, and if even peak Roddick is a strong opponent on grass than someone like Ivanisevic who is a much better grass opponent than Roddick would be for anyone who played him.
Roddick played brilliantly at Wimbledon in 09, he was past his best generally but that tournament he played brilliantly. Rafa played a good last 3 sets of 06 and held serve like 80 was it consecutive times? So yes it was a good win.
What kind of a lame field of grass players is it that Nadal with his bazooka of a serve can hold serve 80 straight times, even if it were prime Rafa, let alone diapered grass court novice one. Prime McEnroe, prime Connors, or prime Sampras would be coming to net off 2006 Nadal's FIRST serve regularly and breaking him like candy, while Agassi would be ripping return winners at will and doing the same vs 2006 Nadal on grass. You only help prove my point.
Or maybe Rafa wasn't so underdeveloped on grass. He still had his movement, his forehand etc...
I'm sorry, but for you to think that Laver beating who he had to beat in his 1969 feat is somehow less difficult than going through Nadal in one final on clay is ridiculous. I mean it is so dumb, that it really boggles the mind.
Do you even know who Laver played. For those who may do no research at all. Here is the list:
1969 US Open
1969 Aussie Open
1969 French Open
In 2009, Roger had his real chance. What happened? He lost to Nadal in the AO and then lost to Del Potro. He had his other chance in 2006, but couldn't finish the tie break against Nadal in the 5th.
In 2005, he lost to Safin in the AO semis. In 2005, he lost to Nadal in the FO semis. But there's no telling if Federer would have beaten a Puerta in near god-mode in the finals anyways.
The point? Roger had his chances. As do all of the greats. But to accomplish this feat, you have to put together a long string of unbelievably good matches against unbelievably good players.
Rod Laver did that. Federer did not.
Who was beating 2005 Nadal on clay? IIRC he won every clay tournament he entered that spring clay season.
Who were Nadal's opponents on clay besides his pigeon (especialy on clay) Federer. An already fading Coria, who was never this great clay guru he is potrayed as anyway. Ferrero was already done and dead. Kuerten was already gathering bugs in his coffin. Nadal was already a great clay courter, but he was not yet the clay GOAT he would become. He won almost everything since there was nobody good enough to beat him on clay in the present field, even at age 18, but that doesnt mean there was nobody in history who could beat that version of Nadal on clay. A prime Kuerten I am pretty sure would have more often than not (again talking teenage Nadal only).
BTW I am pretty sure Nadal lost a couple times on clay in 05 to Gaudio and even lost a bagel set which only proves my point he wasnt yet some untouchable clay courter, just because Federer either wasnt good enough or wasnt able to put it all together to beat him at RG.
Either way do I think prime Laver would have had a fighting shot vs Nadal of 2005 and 2006 (maybe even 2007) at Roland Garros? Yes. The Nadal of 2008, 2010, 2012, or 2013 most likely, definitely not. You are free to disagree of course. That is the whole problem with these competition arguments anyway, there are a whole horde of opinions and none can ever be proven right. It is the same ones Federer fans dismiss when the consensus very weak competition of his dominant era are brought up, and the same now applies to the argument about why he didnt win the Grand Slam. I can say I think prime Laver in an era all were focused on slams above all else, and in Federer's place vs the same competition, would have won the Grand Slams in all of 2003, 2004, and one of 2005 or 2006, just as easily as one can say he wouldnt ever win a French facing Nadal. Both are unproveable opinions, but Laver winning the Grand Slam twice and Federer never managing it is not one.
Thanks for posting this, because it is mind boggling that anyone woud even need to be reminded of this well-known history.
..and there rests the irrefutable difference between one who mastered the sport, and a guy who was hit and miss.
Keep telling yourself that. Coria was phenomenally talented. It's a pleasure to watch his clay-court matches in 2003, 2004 and 2005.
LOL most would agree with me. Do you think experts or even a group of serious tennis fans would place Coria as a top 30 clay courter of all time. Hell no. He probably wouldnt even make top 50. It is hilarious you of all people would use a phrase like that as you live in a parallel universe where maybe 1% of people agree with you on most tennis related topics.
THat's not true. Laver said his 2 GS is equivalent to 1 modern slam because the standard is a lot higher. Plus, he already said Federer is the best.
"Roger Federer certainly is my claim to be the best of all time if there is such a thing," said the 73-year-old.
"Roger's got all the shots, his anticipation is unbelievable, his timing off the groundstrokes with his shots, his single-handed backhand is one of the best there is".
Roger Federer said (when he was 29 or 30 can't quite remember) that he is definitely a better player now than in 2005. So this must be true too right? Nobody knows better than Rog himself correct?
What do you expect an active player to say? That's he's getting worse and worse by the year? Of course you don't say that. Kobe Bryant, Shaq, Iverson doesn't admitted either in their late career.
Laver is 73 years old retired player. You're comparing apple to orange.
He didn't have to say anything in that regard. The fact that he even said it proves that he actually believed it.
Agassi also said it too...
Players has to say it to boost their confident, like other athletes normally would do. You would say the same too if you are in their shoes.
I guess the other little fact that it was three slams on grass and one on clay wasn't worth bring up.
Do you believe what he said? Lol.
So, Fed needed to say that publicly to boost his confidence? LOL, good one.
I also like the way you completely avoided how Agassi said the same thing. Maybe Agassi said it to boost his own confidence for his planned come back...
I think he does believe Roger playing his best ever tennis just to hype his idol Nadal.
Not as remotely good as you hyping Fed/Sampras exhibition match like it was a real match.
Agassi never plan to come back since he retire in 2006.
It doesn't need to be brought up. The feat already is hard enough without pointing out that he won on extremely fast grass and extremely slow clay. That he won on grass that started out very fast at the beginning of the tourneys, and turned into slow clay by the end. Regardless of that, he strung together that series of wins against some of the greatest grass players and majors winners to ever play the game.
Go back again. Look at that list that Laver beat. Count up the number of slams that his opponents held. Then, go look at a couple of Laver's big matches on YouTube. Truly and objectively look at his play.
There is nobody in history who has ever strung together that many consecutive majors match wins against such an incredibly strong list of players -- ever.
Objectively the difference between 2-surface and 3-surface grand slams should be brought up, 'cause it is important.
The list of Rod Laver's opponents is strong, but it is kind of a stretch to think the slam contenders at the beginning of the open era were as motivated and well trained as the contenders nowadays. The article I linked pointed out that in the old days, the majors were not as coveted by the best players as they are today. Just think about it, even in as recent as the late 80s early 90s Australian Open wasn't viewed as a "real" slam. Imho Federer's double five win streak of USO and Wimbledon is a better accomplishment. It was done on two surfaces, but I'd give the edge to Laver's grass + clay. However Fed's done 5 win streaks, which is a much bigger plus.
Regardless what our opinions are, the fact is that the calendar slams changed from 2 surface to 3 surface, which more or less rendered Laver's grand slam record moot. If it had stayed three grass plus one clay, I bet quite a few players would have already broken it.
It is a fact that it went from 2 to 3 surface. Yes. It is not a fact that it rendered Laver's record moot. Otherwise, we wouldn't be talking about it. Otherwise, many experts wouldn't still be saying that Laver was the best ever. Otherwise, many experts wouldn't still be saying that Laver's accomplishment is still the greatest ever.
I could drone on about how different the surfaces were back then. Slow vs fast grass. Grass that turned to dirt. Or how the modern surfaces are actually extremely similar and homogeneous.
Nothing is going to convince you either way.
I mean we've gotten to a point now where you're saying the players didn't care as much about slams back then... as they do now. I mean jeez... who can argue with speculation like that.
I'll just end by saying that I once thought that Federer was the absolute best ever -- hands down. Until I got a little older and wiser. I did some research. I looked at it objectively and I changed my mind.
Yeah but you can't hold his GS to today's standard because of the difference surfaces. His feat is applicable to compare during the period when slams was competed on 3 grass and 1 clay.
73 years old Laver said the 2 GS in those day is equal to today's 1 GS. Is he not older and wiser?
BTW, many basketball fans hold Kobe 81 points/game was more impressive than Wilt 100 points/game because the degree of difficulty was much more higher than in the 60s.
We've been through this so often. Laver in 1969 won the biggest tournaments on all surfaces, hardcourt included. And the grass-courts of Brisbane, Wimbledon and Forest Hills were all considerably different.
You are dealing with a case of twisting information in order to pump the non-GOAT Federer. Laver played under the same conditions as his rivals, so it is patently illogical for anyone to attempt to question major surfaces, as though there was some advantage for one player.
Laver dominated the majors in the calendar year, and earned his GOAT status. Federer, Wilander, et al were incapable of doing that on their best day. A truly impossible task for either man.
I thought my statement including the word moot was pretty clear with respect to what is fact. Not sure how you are confused to what I claimed as fact. Of course you have a legitimate point about fast vs slow grass, as well as the bald points (hint hint clay?), but come on, you really can't see the distinct nature of concrete from grass or dirt?
For your research on sports history, I'd suggest two directionss you may have overlooked 1) impact of allowing professionals to play in the grand slams, i.e. the open era, and 2) impact of television viewership and commercial sponsorship, on the sports of tennis.
Are you really trying to use "logic" as the main arguement to support thay surface does matter as long as everyone competes under the same conditions? Great! Let's change all the slams to clay and see how many calender year record Rafa can make.
I just can't see him win 4 slams in this generations with 2 hc, 1 grass and 1 clay. The modern GS would be a bigger feat. That's why I don't agree his GS can holds against the modern players. If you do that, you're selling the modern players short, because GS today is an uphill battle. Just think, going against Nadal at the FO and Fed at Wimbledon. That's a nightmare!
Take nothing away from Laver...I think it's fair to compare his GS against his generation.
Why? Laver was a very good hardcourt player. As I said, he won the biggest hardcourt events in 1969.
The Grand Slam has always been an uphill battle, which is why it's only been achieved by 2 men in history, and only 1 man in the open era.
However, certain Federer fans seek an absolute when his credits do not easily warrant this GOAT title in accomplishment, etc., yet have no explanation for the reason why the Grand Slam has been considered the greatest accomplishment for decades.
Does Laver(74) and Borg(56)need to be older and wiser to change their mind? Because right now they believe Roger is the greatest.
Both have flip flopped, and Laver has said (paraphrasing) "who can know that?" but history does not flip flop. Federer is out of history's consideration.
Yeah you are right. He is out of history`s consideration, but it seems that he is very deep into your consideration. 99,9% of your posts are about Federer and his fans, some weird fixation you have on the guy....
Laver would be taken to the woodshed by any number of todays players.
Just look at the old films, that tennis was a joke compared to today.
different racquets, different balls, different courts. The mechanics of the game were completely different really.
Those records are records for the kind of game they had then.
The point is that looking at old footage of players isn't the necessarily the most adequate means of judging their abilities.
If Laver was to compete against Djokovic with modern racquets, modern balls on modern courts he'd lose convincingly. But in a match between the two with wooded racquets, old balls on contemporaneous courts, Laver would win easily.
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