who had the better serve Ivanisevic or Roddick?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by Azzurri, Oct 2, 2009.

  1. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    Although both have great serves, which was better? Roddick and Goran had very different games and backed those serves accordingly. Would Roddick be ane even better player if he had the athleticism of Goran? One issue I believe that really hurt Goran was, Goran.
     
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  2. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    My initial thought would be Goran but the stats show Roddick is better I think.

    Like you wrote it may be just because Goran loses a service game all on his own while Roddick may not make the foolish errors Goran makes.

    Roddick is usually in the 90% plus range and I think his high was 93% which may be the ATP record since they have been keeping records.

    Here's the stats for Goran as far as holding serve is concerned from 1991 on.
    1991-84%
    1992-89
    1993-86
    1994-87
    1995-86
    1996-89
    1997-88
    1998-86
    1999-80
    2000-76
    2001-87
    2002-82
    2003-52

    The ace totals for Goran is amazing. He was over a thousand aces in four out of five years from 1994 to 1998 with a high of 1477 in 1996. I think that still may be the ace record for a tennis season.
    Roddick's stats for this year is 753 aces in 815 service games and 91% of his service games held. He's number two in the latter stat behind Karlovic who is number one at 92%.

    The only year Goran was number one in holding serve was 1992. That's really not bad because he was behind Sampras a few times who usually was number one in holding serve in the 1990's.
     
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2009
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  3. World Beater

    World Beater Hall of Fame

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    Roddick.

    more reliable, consistent effective weapon
     
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  4. abmk

    abmk G.O.A.T.

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    goran's was more devastating when on, but roddick's is more consistent and reliable. But I'll go with goran by a slim margin noting that roddick's serve doesn't usually get the credit it deserves ...
     
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  5. ceberus

    ceberus Guest

    Roddick's is more consistent, and he tends to back it up usually with his game.
     
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  6. Zimbo

    Zimbo Semi-Pro

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    I would go with Goran cause of the lefty spin and i think it was a harder serve to read. That said, I agree that ARod probably backed his serve up better.
     
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  7. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    If any player had a choice, they'd be foolish to take Roddick's serve over Goran's. Goran's disguise and placement....it's not even close on the first serve. Add in the lefty spin....

    I believe Andy would trade with Goran any day...HE knows, who had the bigger weapon...
     
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  8. Darth_Timmaayyy!!

    Darth_Timmaayyy!! Banned

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    As they both play two hand back hands. Goran could hit his 1HBH just as well..

    Just thought I would throw that in there...
     
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  9. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    anyone know how I could start a poll?
     
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  10. Borgforever

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    With all due respect to Roddick's steadier thunder-clap of a serve I give the better serve to Goran.

    IMO Goran was a better and more consistently lethal player -- overall -- than Andy...
     
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  11. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I agree. I was thinking about it and it's hard of course to separate the actual effectiveness of the serve and how they may back up a serve. A Federer is usually around very high for holding serve and in some years he may have a higher percentage of holding serve record than perhaps even a Sampras but if you asked anyone whose serve they would rather have, I think just about anyone would rather have Pete Sampras' serve.

    Goran's serve was fabulous and his first serve would one of the greatest ever.
     
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  12. drwood

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    Same as with their games...Roddick more reliable, Goran more fantastic. I'd take Roddick's serve...he doesn't DF in pressure situations like Goran did (i.e. 92 Wimbledon final 5th set).
     
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  13. tennisdad65

    tennisdad65 Hall of Fame

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    7 years in a row at 86-89 % service games held and he was behind Sampras most years?! I guess Sampras must have been at 90% a couple of years. :)

    what's Roddicks numbers for a 7 year stretch since we are comparing the two?
     
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  14. drwood

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    Goran's serve numbers should really start with 1990, since that was the first year he made the big-time -- beat Becker at the French and made his first Wimbledon SF.
     
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  15. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    Agree! In addition, he even has more pace.
     
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  16. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    I agree: Goran's serve was "flashier." Roddick's is more consistent.
     
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  17. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    I know Sampras is regarded as having the best serve ever, it had been common knowledge back in the 90's that Goran was considered to have the best serve. This was also a time of great, power servers. So Goran was probably better than we can recall.
     
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  18. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    LOl..maybe you meant Roddick's MENTAL fortitude over Goran's. Pressure is more mental than physical. But I do get your point...Goran just had madness to deal within between the ears.
     
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  19. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    Pace? placement is more important when you consider how hard both served. karlovic his a harder serve than both,m but I would rather Goran/Andy serve.
     
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  20. President

    President Legend

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    You lose all credibility with this statement. Ivo Karlovic has a much more effective and consistent serve than either Ivanesevic or Roddick. The stats back this up at well; he is at 92% games held without anything else but a serve.
     
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  21. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

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    I think that you need to separate 'Service' from 'Service Game'.

    Talking simply about the quality of each player's serve I don't think Roddick is on a par with Goran. Talking about the quality of their service game is a different matter altogether.

    The one thing I am sure about is that, at its best, Goran's serve was utterly unplayable and, more importantly, unreadable on any surface.
     
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  22. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    I was just using Pete as a point of comparison. I think Goran's first serve was better than Pete's.

    I was thinking of it this way, if I had to pick a serve for myself in the 1990's and I had to play a top world class player, what player's serve would I pick since my game is too lousy to back up a just a good serve? My answer was Goran's since I could serve so many aces and unreturnable serves that I could win some games by serve alone.
     
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  23. akv89

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    I would take Karlovic's serve over Goran's or Andy's in a heartbeat. Karlovic hits as hard as Andy, can hit all the corners consistently, hits aces more regularly than Goran, has a high 1st serve %, and doesn't double fault much.

    Between Goran and Andy, I'd take Goran's 1st serve and Roddick's 2nd serve.
     
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  24. droliver

    droliver Semi-Pro

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    Goran at his peak was unplayable in a way that Roddick is not and could compete well on any surface. Ivo is a freak of nature.

    What would be most interesting would be to segregate the ratio of aces + service winners per total service points rather then % held to really isolate the serve itself. I think you'd really see Goran & Ivo distance themselves from anyone else armed with that Sabermetric stat!
     
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  25. drwood

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    Goran at his peak was only unplayable on grass....Roddick would own him on every other surface except clay (where Goran is clearly better).

    And no, the percentage of games held is what truly matters in the end. No one cares if you serve 78 aces if you lose b/c your serve gets broken.
     
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  26. drwood

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    Not true...prime Goran's serve was only unreadable and unplayable consistently on grass -- otherwise he would have at least made one HC slam final; he never even made a year-end championship final, which is ideally suited for his style (carpet).

    As great as Goran's serve was on grass, on any other surface it was manageable...that's why Courier owned him in slams, while Sampras could serve Courier off the court on HC.
     
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  27. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    LOL...are you kidding me? What has Karlo EVER done in ANY slam????? NOTHING! You miss the point, go figure.:roll:
     
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  28. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Actually Goran led in a number of years in first serve points won and obviously the majority of the matches were NOT on grass. Goran's first serve was awesome on any surface.

    I know we are talking about Goran's serve here but while Goran had an excellent career, I always felt he was a big underachiever. I felt he should have won so many more majors and tournaments but as Azzurri wrote, he lost a lot of matches mentally.

    I'm glad he finally won Wimbledon and it's fitting that it was the last tournament he won.
     
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  29. drwood

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    I was glad Goran won Wimbledon...he should have won that 98 final.

    If Goran's serve was so unreturnable on every surface consistently, he would have made more than 1 slam SF on HC in his 16 year career (and even in doing that he beat a way postprime Edberg at the 96 US Open QF).

    Mentally tough baseliners who could be served off of the court by Sampras actually had good records against Goran (i.e. Courier, Chang), so Goran's serve wasn't nearly as good as Pete's was on HC.

    Goran did underachieve, but he was actually pretty good on clay. In the 92 French, he was the only player who came close to taking Courier to a 5th set (and Courier smoked Muster, Mancini, Medvedev, Agassi, and Korda in that tournament w/o losing a set).
     
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  30. grafselesfan

    grafselesfan Banned

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    So you are admitting Goran was better on grass and better on clay. That is already 2 of the 3 main surfaces. Goran is better on grass and clay, and Roddick only better on hard courts. There is also carpet and indoors. Roddick has never won a Masters title indoors, he has never even made the final of the Masters Cup (1 of his 2 best ever showings was getting destroyed by David Ferrer in the semis during Ferrer's best year). Actually I am trying to recall Roddick even making a Masters finals indoors. Ivanisevic is clearly better there too.

    So Ivanisevic > Roddick on grass, clay, and carpet
    Roddick > Ivanisevic only on hard courts
     
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  31. drwood

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    Obviously for now, Goran is better on grass, b/c he won Wimbledon. What I have said all along is that Goran from 92-98 is no better than Roddick from 03-09; I stand by that. However, if Roddick does nothing more on grass, obviously Goran had a better grass court career, even though he only won 2 career grass court tournaments including that 01 Wimbledon.

    And yes, Goran is clearly better on clay than Roddick.

    On carpet, neither Goran or Roddick has ever made a YEC final (at least Roddick hasn't yet).

    Right now, I'd say

    Goran > Roddick on grass
    Goran >> Roddick on clay
    Roddick >>> Goran on slow HC
    Roddick >>>> Goran on fast HC
    Goran >>> Roddick on indoor carpet

    Plus, we're comparing 16 years of Goran with 9 of Roddick, so right now, I'd still give the overall edge to Roddick.
     
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  32. President of Serve/Volley

    President of Serve/Volley Semi-Pro

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    Ivo is playing in the wrong era... Had he been in the '90s, he would have won everything on grass...
     
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  33. drwood

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    Definitely not true...Wayne Arthurs had a comparable serve and never did anything in slams. It has always taken more than just a serve to win in slams.
     
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  34. akv89

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    You can't win a slam if you can't keep a rally going for more than 5 shots. Karlovic's groundstrokes are as bad as his serve is good. If he has the best serve in the game and the worst ground strokes in the top 100, he's still just about an average player (among the top 100) who struggles to make it deep into the majors.
     
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  35. droliver

    droliver Semi-Pro

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    You're confusing what I was trying to compare. There's a difference b/w who has the best or biggest serve and who holds serve most often. Considering aces + service winners in isolation removes the rest of variables from the serve as a singular function of excellence. Considering it per point served (versus per match or total) would even out discrepencies in the # of games played b/w different players.
     
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  36. msunderland71

    msunderland71 New User

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    I had the pleasure of watching these 2 play at Wimbledon '01. I was in the 3rd row from front, behind the players seats. Serves were all amazing, I recall Goran serving a whole game of aces. What surprised me the most was the great movement on baseline, and attempts at passing shots. They really needed more than just a serve to compete.

    If we talk about serve only (not service games) I'd have to go with Goran.
     
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  37. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    PS. Serves don't get more readable just because one is standing on a hardcourt. Your conclusions don't get more rational either.
     
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  38. Mochel10s

    Mochel10s Banned

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    I'm going with Goran...
     
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  39. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    LOL...maybe you should actually watch him play a few matches. The rest of his game is division III tennis (maybe). But seriously, he can't BREAK serve especially on grass (worse on fast grass). The key to grass is breaking serve.
     
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  40. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    exactly. top 100 is being kind, I say top 500. But he clearly has major issues other than his serve. for some to say he would win (any kind of major) clearly shows they NOTHING about tennis.
     
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  41. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    so Goran would own Roddick on 2/3 surfaces? actually carpet should be added, so 3/4. I am not sure what your point is since it seems to be contradictory.
     
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  42. darthpwner

    darthpwner Banned

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    How is this even a question? Goran is obviously the greatest server of the 90s, while Roddick isnt even the best server this decade.
    Power-Roddick although Goran could probably match Roddick's average heat with today's radar guns
    Placement-Ivanisevic who along with Sampras had insane accuracy on a dime
    Disguise-Ivanisevic with his crouching stance is very hard to read, while Roddick's is readable
    Spin- Roddick because his overall spin rate is higher, similar to Sampras
    Consistency- Roddick gets around 75% first serve percentage and rarely double faults. Goran was a headcase who got around 50% first serve percentages and hit 10 double faults a match.
    Flat serve- Roddick whose power potential reaches 150 and his flat bomb is very heavy in the rpm rate
    Slice serve- Goran's slice out wide on grass was hellacious
    Kick serve-Roddick. Goran simply "I cant hit kick serves" Goran mostly kicked the serve on clay, and it really wasnt that good. Roddick's is much better.
    Aces-Ivanisevic obviously. Beast ace machine.
    Service winners- Roddick probably. If you could get a racket on Gorans serve it was easier to return.
    Overall- Ivanisevic
    Here you go Forrest Gump. BTW Azzuri do you even play tennis.
     
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2009
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  43. Azzurri

    Azzurri Legend

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    you're a funny guy. not sure how, but you have me confused. I think Goran's serve was better. I have argued this on other threads as well. But I agree with your assessment. This issue was discussed in another thread and way too many (teens and clueless posters) were claiming Roddick's serve is better..I disagreed.

    yes, I play tennis alas not very well.
     
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  44. DownTheLine

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    Karlovic...
     
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  45. drwood

    drwood Hall of Fame

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    Goran wouldn't own Roddick on grass -- they're equal if you look at the 1st 9 years of Goran's career compared with Roddick; Roddick even has more grass titles (which isn't hard since Goran won a grand total of one grass court tournament during his first 10 years as a pro).

    Fast HC is different then slow HC -- they're essentially 2 different surfaces -- hence why Agassi owned Sampras on slow HC Australian Open and Sampras owned Agassi on fast HC US Open. There are many other examples of this. So these are essentially 2 surfaces, and Roddick dominates Goran on both.

    Clay and carpet Goran clearly is better than Roddick, although Roddick has a shot to narrow the gap on indoor if he can make at least one YEC final before the end of his career (since Goran never could, yet the likes of Corretja, Moya, Chang did during the same era).

    So of these 5 surfaces, its 2 for Goran (clay, carpet), 2 for Roddick (slow HC, fast HC) and 1 even (grass).

    Edge to Roddick since he still has at least 2-3 top-level years left.
     
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  46. drwood

    drwood Hall of Fame

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    They get more readable b/c Goran was always a headcase (much moreso on HC) and had more predictable serving patterns on nongrass surfaces. Plus HC always neutralized Goran's serve to some degree.

    There is nothing irrational about the snipets of my posts you've recycled. Just b/c you think I'm anti-Sampras (I'm not -- I just tell the whole truth about him, good and bad), doesn't give you the right to continually flame me.
     
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  47. darthpwner

    darthpwner Banned

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    Very much agreed.
     
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  48. Datacipher

    Datacipher Banned

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    Oh no! Don't underestimate him...remember it was the 90's where nobody could play....

    Slams aplenty for Karlovic in the 90's....well assuming he didn't run into Agassi (whom he couldn't get a single set from at the USO, the year before Agassi retired due to being hobbled from old-age), or 90's giants, Rosset or Norman....who have a 5-0 record against him in the 2000's.....

    How many slams did Rosset and Norman get? I forget!
     
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  49. grafselesfan

    grafselesfan Banned

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    Wasnt Wimbledon this year Karlovic's first ever slam quarterfinal? BTW the grass court field since 2002 has been the worst in history. The game is building some depth back up on hard courts and to a lesser degree clay, but the grass court field remains pathetic. You have Federer and Nadal who have shown they are great on grass, but who else. Djokovic is not really a grass courter though he can play decent on it. Murray the same. Roddick's Wimbledon this year was his last really good Wimbledon since 2005 now. Hewitt is way past his prime. Nalbandian and Davydenko are comical on grass, despite that Nalbandian somehow made his only slam final at Wimbledon in this era which is even more comical. Early signs are Del Potro himself is a tragic comedy on grass, as are the current top French players (other than the overhyped Gasquet who isnt even that relevant other than maybe 1 year).

    So if Karlovic had any remote capacity to be a slam threat he would surely have some great success at Wimbledon in this era. Even slowed down grass as it is, still should clearly be his best surface, and hardly anyone of the better players today are that comfortable on grass. Yet he still cant even make the quarters of Wimbledon, well not until this year anyway, and loses first week constantly. It took the grass court clueless Verdasco to get him to the quarters finally, and even then he still nearly lost.
     
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  50. SuperDuy

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    and hes what 6'10?
     
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