who is better, old timers or modern player?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by spadesss, Feb 1, 2007.

  1. spadesss

    spadesss Semi-Pro

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    i think most people forget the equipement used between old timers and modern players when debating who is better.

    for the old guys...
    most rackets were made from wood and requires much more skill and talent to use. those guys still able to hit over 100mhp serves with them wooden rackets. some players can't do that consitently now with modern rackets. i think its hands down for the old timers on the skill department. they have to hit the sweetspot everytime to get a good pop. the rackets now have a bigger sweetspot and hitting off center is more forgiving. wooden rackets are heavier as well. the points last a lot longer so conditioning is important.

    not to take anything away from the modern players.
    they are great in their own ways, just a bit silly to compare who is better IF they played each other. i can't name another player besides Federer that can maybe used a wooden racket and hit the ball. i doubt Roddick can serve the way he does now with the wooden racket.

    i think old timers are better but will get kill on a one to one as the racket technology heavily favors the modern game. one reason making it harder to play serve and volley.

    its like modern planes dropping bombs on the cave man society.
     
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  2. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Sampras and flipper during an exhibition were hitting serves in the 120's with wood racquets.

    Modern players would smoke the older players.
     
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  3. gsquicksilver

    gsquicksilver Semi-Pro

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    modern players are stronger, faster, and more fitter than older generation players. i don't believe they trained as hard off the court as they do nowadays with modern players.
     
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  4. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    Modern players are unquestionably better athletes -- more is known now about training, diet, etc., to maximize athletic ability. But I think it is a fact that people today overrate the importance of pure athletic ability in being a great tennis player. Serena Williams, who was far from in great athletic condition, smoked the best athletes in the WTA at this year's Australian Open. Tennis smarts and the will to win are, in my opinion, more important than pure athletic ability, and the players of the past had these qualities in spades. Also, equipment does play a factor, and I think it favors the "old timers." Those heavy, wooden rackets with the tiny heads required far greater control in order to consistently hit good shots. People marvelled at Agassi's clean shots, and he was an amazing natural talent no doubt, but he benefitted to an extent from the oversize head. Tilden, Cochet, Perry, and Budge were, I think, better ball strikers than anyone from the last ten or twenty years. A worthy observation comes from E. Digby Baltzell, author of Sporting Gentlemen (1994), who notes that while there are probably more really good second-class players today than ever before, the Open Era also witnessed a decline in the number of true first-class players. He writes that virtually anyone who saw both Perry and Connors play, for example, would rate Perry above Connors.

    Patterson, Vines, and Gonzales could probably serve as well as Sampras or Ivanisevic. Tilden, Budge, and Kramer were not far behind. Cochet, Perry, and Budge were all masters at taking the ball on the rise, long before Agassi. Gonzales, in an interview shortly before his death in the mid-1990s, said that Budge's backhand remained the best he'd ever seen--and he didn't even face Budge in his prime. Kramer followed the game astutely as player, tour promoter, commentator, and author, and he maintains that Vines at his best could beat anyone in history, and that Budge was the best ever for consistent play. He was even interviewed at Wimbledon in 2004, I believe, and said that Federer reminded him of Gonzales, but he would bet on either Vines or Budge to find a way to beat Federer. Ultimately, these questions cannot be definitively answered. I do think, however, that tennis fans are a bit short-sighted compared to fans of other sports. No student of baseball could seriously argue that Bonds, Rodriguez, and Pujols were better than Ruth, Cobb, or Williams, but tennis fans often make comparable arguments. It is important that we give credit to the pioneers of the game, who in many ways did more with less, and who helped make the game what it is today.

    (For the record, Baltzell listed his "ten all-time champions" [c. 1994] as being Tilden, Cochet, Perry, Budge, Kramer, Gonzales, Laver, Newcombe, Borg, and McEnroe. I am sure now that Sampras and Federer would both have a place on his list, if he were alive today, perhaps replacing Gonzales and McEnroe, whom he never really liked anyway.)
     
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  5. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    There is an evolution in sport, no doubt. 'We are dwarfs on the shoulders of giants', philosophers in the middle ages used to say. Better equipment, better nutrition and training methods, the experience of older generations-all this gives the modern player advantages. Men are bigger and taller nowadays: in 1970 average men were 1,75, now they grow to maybe 1,82. In older time taler guys were not that good at ball sports or boxing. A Joe Louis, 1,85 high and a cruiser weight on todays standards, flattened lumbering Primo Carnera or Buddy Baer, who were 2,05. Today a Klitschko ist 2,03, but still fast (maybe with a class chin). In soccer, strikers like Pele, Best, Greaves or Mueller were around 1,70; now they are 1,90, and agile (Drogba, Adriano etc.). But despite having no coaches, trainers and entourage, the players of yesteryear could play with ther small sticks. I recently saw some clips of Laver-Rosewall matches out of the 60s. Despite the time difference of ca. 40-50 years, the standard was quite good, they were fast, had great court coverage, used the whole court, played agressively from inside the baseline, and made some shots out of impossible positions. The one shot-aeria, they executed better than today, is the volley and the half-volley, and they used the lob more and more clever than todays players.
     
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  6. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    A question for urban, or anyone else: are you familiar with Al Laney's book Covering the Court? I have not read it, though I have seen it referenced now several times, with glowing comments. Bud Collins called him "perhaps the best of us all who've tried to put the game into words" in a 2001 book review. I am thinking of ordering a copy from Amazon, though I was wondering if you had any thoughts.

    Also, any chance you've read Metzler's Tennis Styles and Stylists yet? It's written in an informal style, but it's a great read, and the author makes very interesting comparisons of the great players through 1969 at the end of the book. I think you'd enjoy it -- though you may find it too slanted toward American "power" tennis, even though it's written by an Australian!
     
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  7. vascoboy

    vascoboy Rookie

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    modern players, just watch clips on the older ones...i know...the equipment has changed the game,...but look at their strokes, serves,...i know it's romantic to say the olders played better but I don't believe so...i imagine future generations will be better than todays...
     
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  8. gsquicksilver

    gsquicksilver Semi-Pro

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    i totally agree. modern players are better, their technique, strokes, mechanics have been perfected throughout the years. the old time players were the ones who started it all, but the modern era built on their strengths.

    it's like comparing, what is better: the new lexus LS460 or the original lexus LS400?
     
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  9. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    To fall back on my earlier analogy, then, would you also be willing to rank Shaquille O'Neal over Wilt Chamberlain? Tim Duncan over Bill Russell? How about LaDainian Tomlinson over Jim Brown or Walter Payton? Tom Brady over Johnny Unitas or Joe Montana? And of course, Barry Bonds over Babe Ruth or Ted Williams?! Again, I think tennis fans seem to be much more short-sighted than fans of other sports, which is sad, because tennis has such a rich history, and there are very few people who know very much about it.
     
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  10. urban

    urban Hall of Fame

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    Chaognosis, no, i haven't read the books of Metzler and Al Laney, but i will try to get them. Today its far easier to get these old copies, thanks to the internet. Earlier, at least in Europe, one had to go to Shaftesbury-Road in London, to get some old tennis books. Laney alonside Allison Danzig, was rated as one of the great US writers. I have a book of Herbert Warren Wind, who could also write well. My favourite writer, regarding style of prose, was Rex Bellamy of The Times. I know Baltzell's book, which You mentioned. Its an interesting read, although he is very much in favour of the old amateur ideal and critical of the pro game. And ironically some of the old gentlemen, like Tilden and Perry, were not always that gentleman-like, and almost all tried to make a living out of tennis, by turning pro.
     
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  11. Mountain Ghost

    Mountain Ghost Semi-Pro

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    Power vs. Grace

    If you’re keeping score, a modern player would win. If you’re awarding style and grace points, except for a few exceptions, I think a number of the older players could win the dance contest.

    MG
     
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  12. spadesss

    spadesss Semi-Pro

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    it would be great if pete and fed play exhibition match with wooden rackets and then get a few old timers to join in. it would be interesting to see how well pete and fed would play.
     
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  13. ferocious4hand

    ferocious4hand Semi-Pro

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    Bond's is far more superior than Ruth or Williams...the guy's juiced!
     
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  14. BlankenshipBabaganoosh

    BlankenshipBabaganoosh Banned

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    old timers had grace, the new players have only power except gasquet.
     
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  15. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    I disagree with your analogy. I am actually surprised you used this. This "argument" does not hold water because all those players you mentioned played for a "TEAM".

    What makes tennis special and unique from these sports is everything that happens between the lines is between two people. Not 22, or 18, or 12, etc.

    A tennis player is solely responsible for what happens between the lines.
     
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  16. AndrewD

    AndrewD Legend

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    And their second serves - the key to how fast you hit the first one-, just how fast were they and how much spin did they manage to put on the ball?

    ANSWER: they wouldn't have been any faster or carried any more spin than those hit by old timers like Newcombe, Smith, Ashe or any of the game's other big servers.

    Modern players do not have a mortgage on talent. Sure, they are better trained than their forebears but they sure as hell aren't better players.

    It just seems as though too many people confuse 'different' with 'better' and assume that anything new must be of a higher quality. That's just a load of rubbish. People who believe that are concentrating on the secondary aspects of sport - the equipment and the technique- while ignoring the simple fact that what makes a player great is not something which can be taught or bought. It's an attitude and, in sport, it is everything.
     
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  17. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    You pick on a technicality, but I don't see how this undermines my argument in the least. The same arguments about the evolution of tennis players can be applied to batters in baseball, quarterbacks in football, etc. (that's why I compared only basketball/football players with others of the same position). You can easily make the case that coaching, technology, training, fitness, the physical advancement of humans, etc., makes a modern player in any sport superior to an "old timer." But this is simply not true. Serious students of baseball, a game whose history is more studied and better understood, generally do not buy this line of thinking. Tennis fans rather seem content to live in a state of blissful ignorance, believing that every year the game they're seeing is better than the year before. Many experts believe, in fact, that all the developments of the modern game have actually caused players to deteriorate, because they all employ the same strategies, and do not have the tactical minds of a Tilden, Gonzales, or Laver (I would strongly agree with this, BTW). I grant that it is tough to compare eras, but from what I have seen, read, and studied, it seems clear to me that the players of the 1930s, '50s, and '60s were in many ways more skilled than the players of today. It is simply the culture of tennis fans, that they for the most part have excruciatingly short-term memories.
     
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  18. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    I would like to add on to my last post, just to qualify that not all players today are "less skilled" than those of the past. Sampras in many ways was a throwback to the Big Game players of the 1950s, especially Kramer, whose pinpoint-accurate serve, aggressive net play, and exceptional forehand were the foundations of his game. Federer plays more of an all-court power game, like some of the great Aussies, especially Hoad. And the short-term memory of fans is by no means a new phenomenon. Tilden, Vines, Perry, Budge, Kramer, Gonzales, Hoad, Laver, Borg, McEnroe, Sampras, and Federer were each hailed in his day as the best ever. Sometimes these observations turn out to be better founded than others. Vines and Hoad, for example, despite their brilliance "between the lines," ultimately did not have the consistency or longevity to justify their praise -- I myself have fallen victim to the comments of writers of their day, but in my sober moments I cannot justify ranking Hoad above Rosewall or even Newcombe, or Vines above Perry. Federer, I think has the consistency these other "critical darlings" lacked. In the last three years he has earned his place close to the pinnacle of the sport, though I think his dominance is not quite at the level of Budge in 1937-39.
     
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  19. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    I don't go by the assumption that every year players are better. Tennis is very similar to fashion in the sense that every 10-20 years the "pendulum" is swung back, and forth again.

    There was a very long era of S & V tennis, then one player started playing baseline and that changed the current "fashion", then it went back again, and so-forth.

    However, each time it comes back around, the players are better than their predecessors.

    For example, we are now seeing Federer playing the beautiful all-court game that Laver played 40years ago. However, he is better. etc, etc, etc,

    People tend to think baseline play was started by Connors/Borg. It wasn't. There were lots of "old-timers" that primarily played baseline. However, Borg/Connors "upped" the ante.
     
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  20. Moose Malloy

    Moose Malloy Legend

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    Philippoussis was clocked serving with a wood racquet that was 84 sq inches, far bigger than those used by Borg or Laver.

    No doubt the really big servers would serve big with wood as well, but everyone else? Philippoussis & Sampras are truly rare physical talents who have incredible strength. I would like to see Davydenko, Nadal, Nalbandian serve with wood racquets(actually I heard nalbandian served with a wood racquet in an exo with clerc & vilas with wood racquets recently. I think he was serving around 60 mph, doublefaulting most of the time, heard he looked completely clueless)

    and like andrew said, what about 2nd serves? what about 1st serve percentages, esp over a 5 setter? I don't think todays players would be quite so confident on the serve, with wood it is extremely difficult to hit kick serves.

    and we're just talking about serves, groundstrokes of today are simply impossible with wood, returning a 120 mph serve with a 65 sq inch racquet is something that even 'talented' players of today may have difficulty with.

    chaognosis, the reason tennis players are so ignorant compared to other sports fans is that other sports don't have equipment dictating so much of the evolution of the sport.

    baseball has used the same basic equipment for 100 years.

    it amazes me that so many don't notice that the game was basically the same, pace wise, from budge to laver to borg/mcenroe over some 60 years & than suddenly everyone hit harder once wood was scrapped.

    and then the pace picked up even more with larger graphite racquets, then the string changes of recent years.

    Imagine if baseball allowed metal bats, even without steroids, the stats would go through the roof.
     
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  21. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Moose, in actuality many "old-timers" and "respected tennis writers/coaches/players", state that Tilden hit 163 mph serves. And that he along with Gonzalez and many others FREQUENTLY hit 100+ mph forehands. I will remind you that they played with wood.

    These are feats that have NEVER been seen in the modern game, with the "new technology". Players do not "frequently" hit 100+ mph forehands. And even Roddick with his "juiced up" Babolat, and "juiced up radar gun has been unable to come anywhere near 163 mph.

    How were players with a "65 square inch" wood racquet able to retunr 163 mphs serves? How were they able to frequently hit 100+ mph forehands, and get returns from their opponents?

    So which is it? Did they, or didn't they?
     
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  22. NoBadMojo

    NoBadMojo G.O.A.T.

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    We've done this before as I have done wood exhibition matches. I can serve pretty much the same with my first serve as far as ball speed, placement, kick etc, but it takes significantly more effort to do so than with my current frames. the HUGE diference is on second serves....they are so much easier to be effective with using a modern frame. This also makes it strategically a better choice to go for a bigger first serve as we could more easily hit a reliable second serve with a modern frame..better players often hit their second serves with every bit the headspeed of their first, it's just that you put more spin on the second serve and that is MUCH harder to do with a 65 inch wooden frame.
    The differences are numerous.....it isnt possible for one advanced player to compete with a wooden frame against someone of the same level using their regular frame....we tried that as well and it was a total lopsided mismatch tryng it both ways
    Also the service returns have gotten so much better comparatively speaking to how much the serves have advanced
    I'm a 5.0 and used to be significantly better and play all court T.
    It really is impossible to compare how one player would do against another from another era because if the old timer were playing today, he would be using different gear and different technique, have more training tools, etc
    I would say however, that back then, there were far more real athletes playing tennis than there are now as pro tennis players to me mostly seem more trained than athletic..it's more a fitness grind than a true hand/eye fast twich athletic endeavor and the game reminds me more cycling these days than tennis with a few exceptions. of course todays players are stronger and fitter, have better equipment, better chemicals :), better trainers, better training tools, etc.
     
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  23. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    Moose, I see your point about tennis being an especially technology-dependent sport. I do think, however, that all of the arguments about coaching, training, fitness, and the physical advancement of humans, that people make about today's tennis players, could be applied just as easily to baseball players. If one were being consistent, anyway, which most people are not. And there have been some technological changes in baseball. Though I do not know so much about the game, I do know that gloves were substantially redesigned at some point, and also balls themselves have been subject to a great deal of evolution. Wasn't there a new ball introduced shortly before the home run explosion in the late 1990s? My main point is that while these developments have occurred in other sports, to some extent, their fans nevertheless appreciate the historical importance and greatness of past heroes. Ruth usually comes out on top of baseball G.O.A.T. polls, even among casual fans. Where are Tilden and Budge on most tennis polls today? It is sometimes hard to find a fan who has even heard of them, much less one who has a firm knowledge of their accomplishments. This is sad, I think, because Tilden was at least as great a figure in tennis as Ruth was in baseball, and what Budge achieved in the late 1930s was, and is, simply unparalleled.
     
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  24. EricW

    EricW Professional

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    The thing I don't understand about comparing players of today and people back then was, they didn't have good technique... watch their serves are they don't maximize everything like people do now, i'm sure if roddick used wood for the last 20 years he could still serve the fastest in history, as long as everyone else used wood...
     
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  25. Frank Silbermann

    Frank Silbermann Professional

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    The foot-fault rules were different then. Until maybe twenty years ago (I'm not sure when they made the change), until you made contact you were required to have at least one foot touching the ground behind the baseline and the other foot was not allowed to pass over the baseline.

    I'm not sure why they changed the rule; perhaps it was difficult to be consistent between linesmen in calling footfaults.
     
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  26. Frank Silbermann

    Frank Silbermann Professional

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    Also, there is much better treatment of injuries (including arthroscopic surgery) to repair the damage when players overtrain. In the old days, anyone who tried to train or play like today's players would have had his career ended by the first stress injury.
     
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  27. Trinity TC

    Trinity TC Semi-Pro

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    Off the top of my head, I believe it was 1961. It was partially because the application of the foot-fault rule varied from tournament to tournament which hindered the serve and volleyers. I believe some early TV broadcasts in the US used to talk less about the game itself and more about who was cheating by foot-faulting so that was cleared up with the rule change.

    There was also a lot of tinkering with the rules in the pro game back in the early 60s in an effort to make it more fan friendly back then. A few I remember were the VASSS (Van Alen Simplified Scoring System), the One serve rule and a rule change where the server had to serve from behind a small line about a foot behind the baseline.
     
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  28. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

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    tilden was a paedophile, so understandably he has been airbrushed out of tennis history.
     
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  29. chaognosis

    chaognosis Semi-Pro

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    And Budge was an impeccable human being, but he is even less known today than Tilden. If anything, Tilden is better known now because of his dubious late-life, off-court behavior. Most biographers, BTW, paint a not-too-condemning portrait of Big Bill, and seem to make the case that his crimes are more harshly remembered than perhaps they should be. There is no excusing the offense, no question, but it also does not erase what he did for the sport, either on the court or off it. Tennis would almost certainly not exist today, the way we know it, without Tilden's influence.
     
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  30. VGP

    VGP Legend

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    When are you guys gonna get it?

    Sampras and Federer ARE old-timers. Old-timers reincarnate.

    They idolize players of the past and employ their styles of strokes, and more importantly, tried and true classic tennis tactics. They take consultation of past greats and kept the traditions alive.

    The classics never die.
     
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  31. Yours!05

    Yours!05 Professional

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    This has to be the best of the many threads on this subject. Be great if someone with a comprehensive collection of old clips could upload them to a "sharing" *cough* site.
    Equipment technology has thrown up a veritable dross of boring second class players who have little appeal except to fankids and hinder true appreciation of the game.

    @VGP
    Hope they aren't the last.
     
    Last edited: Feb 2, 2007
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  32. alwaysatnet

    alwaysatnet Semi-Pro

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    I think the modern players would have to be considered superior to the old timers strictly on physical differences alone. Today's players are bigger,fitter,better trained and better coached. It takes nothing away from the players who competed before tennis became such a big business,relatively speaking, but you can't ignore all the resources and training that today's players have access to that the old timers didn't. It's pretty useless comparing eras but without doubt today's players have all the technical advantages.
     
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  33. wilsun

    wilsun Guest

    I think most of the players of the past would beat most of the players of today. What if the players of the past had the equipment of today, no contest. I would like to believe this anyway because I think the players of the past had respect and dignity for the way the game should be played.Wearing clean all white clothes, trying to respect the opponent and the referee, shaking hands at the end, even the crowd being quiet during the match. All of these things make me long for the old days. I do not like the fans yelling between points and the players screaming during points. One more thing the only player who would beat anyone of any time in tennis past to present with any equipment is Rodger Federer The best tennis player ever!!!
     
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  34. slice bh compliment

    slice bh compliment G.O.A.T.

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    Excellent idea for a thread. Some excellent points made already. I'm looking forward to it developing....and reading more. I just wish I had some video to share.

    There is a TW Forum member whose screen name is OldGuysRule. Anyone know him/remember his name?
    I wonder what his thoughts are on this topic.;)
     
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  35. spadesss

    spadesss Semi-Pro

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    is it safe to say that wooden rackets are tougher to learn, play and master???
    i never touched one so i am assuming and asking those who have to give their perspective.

    i figured todays' rackets have some many specs for players to choose from or tailor made to some of them even.
    did any of the old timer's ever "tailor" made their rackets the way modern players currently do?
     
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  36. Sagittar

    Sagittar Hall of Fame

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    today players are better , especially fitness related ...
     
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  37. Frank Silbermann

    Frank Silbermann Professional

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    You could vary the weight from, say, 12 ounces to 16. You could have a racquet that was head-light or evenly balanced.

    Because wood is much more flexible than graphite, to get any sort of power in the racquet (i.e., stiffness comparable to the Prince POG) you needed _lots_ of wood, i.e., a very heavy racquet. Baseliners were advised to use the heaviest racquet they could swing, though serve-and-volleyers often used lighter racquets at the expense of their groundstrokes.

    Heavy topspin with a heavy racquet was too tiring to rely on in a five set match with no tie-breakers, and the tiny sweetspot would result in lots of mis-hits. That's why players were forced to use good form and correct grips. Today coaches, in contrast, must learn to teach bad form and incorrect grips (i.e., hitting off the back foot with a semi-western grip) because that's what wins.

    Note that before WWI there _were_ lots of heavy-topspin western grip players from the concrete-court world of California, but with heavy wooden racquets they could not lift the balls well enough on grass or endure the long points on clay.
     
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  38. vudal

    vudal Banned

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    Todays 5.0 rating would be equal to the mens level back then.
     
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  39. VGP

    VGP Legend

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    That may be true in a basic level, but to say it so gruffly sounds disrespectful to me.

    Some people try and convince themselves of this, like NTRP level 5.0 is a magic number or something. Like thinking, "Wow, I'm a 5.0. I've arrived. I coulda, shoulda, woulda gone pro. I'd sure kick some serious ass."

    That doesn't mean that "today's 5.0" would be a tennis great back in the day.

    What I (and others) conclude is that you really can't compare eras. You can't transport a current 5.0 level player back in time to play Don Budge, Bill Tilden, or Suzanne Lenglen. You can't ressurect Henri Cochet, Maurice McLoughlin or Maureen Connoly, or make younger a Rod Laver, Jack Kramer, or Margaret Court to see how a current 5.0 would really stack up against a player from the past brought here and now.

    The issues of equipment, training, surfaces, environment, AND rules all come into play. We've all benefited by learning from the past. I just don't want to see people disrespect the past.

    To entertain the idea, if we could transport people.....I think the initial shock would be there. The "old-timer" would probably be initially surprised or overwhelmed. Whether they'd be able to adjust within a set, match, month or year (if they could change equipment and adjust to the surfaces) would be interesting to see. Given time and adjustment, I think we'd see that the great players would still be great and a 5.0 would still be a nameless hack.
     
    #39
  40. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    Well I saw a solid 5.0-5.5 player who is ranked in the top 10 here in Florida for 5.0's get his ass whooped by a guy who was a profiessional in the early 70's.

    He got beat up very-very badly.
     
    #40
  41. Kaptain Karl

    Kaptain Karl Hall Of Fame

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    Good stuff, VGP. I *am* a 5.0 ... and I have yet to take a *set* off my 5.5 drilling partner. (And he isn't nearly as "dedicated" to working-out and striving to improve as I am...!) He's just plain better.

    I don't think I could get four games off Cliff Drysdale ... who I assume still plays for fun and exercise. (And he was never one of the "Greats" during "his day.")

    Many players today have no idea how much greater the Degree of Difficulty is when trying to break into the next level. (Many forget how Federer wasn't by any means "great" when he went Pro....)

    - KK
     
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  42. Nick Irons

    Nick Irons Semi-Pro

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    chaognosis

    I am enjoying your take on tennis in this forum. I have to concur; it is a grave generalization to claim 'today's player's' would smoke 'the older guy's'.

    Believing that mindset shows how narrowminded one can be. The legends of the game are legends of the game for a reason. Not because of modern medicine, not because of modern racquets, but because of thier skill on the court, the sheer atheleticism and their outright game.

    I'd put money on all things being equal, that yesterday's legends would be legends in todays game as well and todays Paul Goldsteins being yesterdays Paul Goldsteins.
     
    #42
  43. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Haven't read the rest of the thread, but quick question -- Kaptain Karl versus Chris Everett: Who wins and why, and what's the score in a best of 3?
     
    #43
  44. Yours!05

    Yours!05 Professional

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    Way to draw the wrong crowd into this 5-star thread.:shock: :roll:
     
    #44
  45. Kaptain Karl

    Kaptain Karl Hall Of Fame

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    heycal - I'm not taking that bait....

    I'd like to see the *reverse* of what people keep hypothesizing. Put Nadal against Mac ... on a hard court ... with woodies ... for one "Pro set." That would give us (some) idea of how much the equipment really matters....

    But others are right; all this speculating is fun ... but kinda silly.

    - KK
     
    #45
  46. The Gorilla

    The Gorilla Banned

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    mcenroe beat borg on hard courts.
     
    #46
  47. Nick Irons

    Nick Irons Semi-Pro

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    There are obvious exceptions and I don't think anyone is saying it is an absolute rule.

    Now, Nadal is a freak of nature and admittedly, Mac isn't the physical specimen of Rafa but he had a serve and volley game that was just stupid. Your basing your thoughts on physical appearance.

    I mean, Mac beat Goran Ivanisevic, Richard Krajicek and Boris Becker in 1992. That's the beauty of the game, it isn't about just crushing the rock and over powering people; see Roddick and Nadal for that theory.

    Roger isn't the biggest guy on the block.
     
    #47
  48. Kaptain Karl

    Kaptain Karl Hall Of Fame

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    Nick, I don't know what you think I'm thinking.... I don't understand what you have posted ^^^.

    - KK
     
    #48
  49. heycal

    heycal Hall of Fame

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    Well, you don't need to answer if you don't want to, but I don't think of it as "bait" but rather a legitimate question. You introduced the topic of how you would fare against an old male pro in his 60's, so it made me wonder how you think you would fare against a former female pro your own age. I picked Everett partly because I asked my own 5.0 buddy this same question awhile back, and was surprised to hear him say he thought he would lose 1-6,1-6 or so.

    I know it's all silly speculation, but I find these questions more interesting when one of the potential players -- like you -- can speculate themselves about how would they do in such a match-up, instead of wondering about Nadal v. McEnroe since neither is here with us to take part in the discussion.
     
    #49
  50. Nick Irons

    Nick Irons Semi-Pro

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    Maybe clarifying yourself may help ? Are you suggesting Mac or Nadal wins ?
     
    #50

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