Why are Laver's 2 GrandSlams held with sugh high regard?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by dima, Feb 28, 2007.

  1. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Can't disagree with that! Totally logical. (I'm beginning to sound like Mr. Spock. Wish I was as smart as Spock.:) )
     
  2. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    Maybe this argument can have a set of rules to even out the issues.

    1) the players will possess only the skills and fitness levels of their prime in their respective eras.

    2) we must find a racket that is between wood and modern graphite tweeners.

    If we were comparing Laver to Nadal. The Racket would be the Wilson ProStaff 85 imo. In this comparison I say Nadal wins in a close 5 set match.

    If it were Laver and Federer we would need to find another racket. But for Djoko and Murray the ps85 probably would do as well.

    This is kinda like the show deadliest warrior.
     
  3. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Maybe we should just let them use light sabers instead. In that case I would say Luke Skywalker is the best tennis player. I would eliminate Darth Vader because that costume would weigh him down too much. No mobility.
     
  4. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Incidentally shouldn't we just get back to topic? Laver's two Grand Slams, sweeping the top four tournament have only been accomplished three times in men's tennis history so I think it's pretty impressive.
     
  5. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    My proposed rules can help determine GOAT. Why not? I say under my rules Nadal bests Laver.
     
  6. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Whatever. It's very well possible.

    I do think the sarcasm is getting out of hand here. I'll just leave it at that.

    Nadal beats Laver is really off topic.
     
  7. arche3

    arche3 Banned

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    True. Laver slams are a great achievement .
     
  8. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    Perry.Kramer,Kodes,Newcombe, those were also fantastic athletes.
     
  9. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    I think, plainly and at the end of the day, reason Laver won a GS in the star studded fields of 1969 is just that he played like nobody else the all court game, not just technically but also strategically.Nobody has ever done that and I don´t think anybody will in the enxt 10 years.

    he is in a league by himself.
     
  10. Tagg

    Tagg New User

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    physicality of the game today means that no one will achieve the grand slam

    non-calender year grand slam is a more realistic prospect

    sampras was 2 matches away from it in 94, federer was 2 sets away in 06 and 07, nadal was 2 matches away in 10, djokovic was 2 sets away this year

    it's not a coincidence that it's become easier with the homogenized surfaces and playing styles

    career grand slam has also become a lot more achievable. it was a shock when agassi did it in 99

    federer has had the honestly to admit that the changes (uniform) in surfaces has led to himself and nadal achieving it so fast

    don't believe nadal has commented on it.

    can't see either of them winning it in the 80s or 90s. nadal would come unstuck at the AO and the US, federer at the FO
     
  11. World Beater

    World Beater Hall of Fame

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    I am misinterpreting what you are writing??

    This is what you said...

    Hard to see skill differences? Really???

    Again. returning a 120-130 mph serve...timing a ball coming at you at 3000 rpm. Split second decisions.

    Movement and court coverage when the balls are flying over the net at 90mph.

    This is not all due to equipment and fancy racquets/ strings.

    I think you are misinterpreting what you see on the tv screen.

    Its easy to see skill differences. Players of today have demonstrated it. Players of past eras have not - we speculate that they MIGHT have if they grew up today...but we dont know.

    Serena williams hits the ball hard, and power is part of the game. She may not have the finesse skills of those players you mention, but power is a huge part of the game. She also happens to have great technique on her groundstrokes that are able to generate her that power. There are bigger girls on tour who cannot generate tha same pace because their technique isn't as good or as robust in terms of racquet head speed.

    To me serena williams stroke production is far different to those players you mention. Her racquet swings are far more violent and cut through the air faster. The racquets surely help the control, but the power can be generated even from wooden / heavier racquets.
     
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2012
  12. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Actually what I'm writing is that wood racquets force skill differences and that if Federer or Nadal used them they would play differently and if Laver or Rosewall used today's racquets they would play differently. There are skill differences, BOTH WAYS. So what I mean is that you can't tell EASILY the differences in play because the equipment is different and perhaps I forgot to mention, the surfaces are different. For example I have changed my own forehand swing so it takes advantage of today's equipment so I can hit more topspin.

    If if this is a contradiction to you that is okay but I don't see it.

    Would you change you style if you used different equipment like a smaller wood racquet? I know that I do. Perhaps Serena would not.

    Here's the thing, maybe you can tell the differences easily. If you can that's great but I do NOT think I can. The reason is that I believe the racquet and equipment differences would cause coaches to teach a different style of play so we don't know what would happen if they all operated under the same system or if the roles were reversed.

    Would Federer or Nadal serve and volley more if they learned to play the old way? Would Rosewall use a semi-western grip? Would Laver use a two handed backhand? Would Rosewall play left handed because he's a natural lefty? We don't know the answers to this.

    Here's a hypothetical example-Let's say Serena is playing Martina Navratilova at the 1969 US Open a wood racquet. The US Open is played on awful worn grass that takes terrible bounces and often doesn't bounce. So you're telling me that Serena can take the same swing as she does today? I don't think so. I think she would have to flatten out her swing to compensate for the bad bounces. She may have to volley more. And the racquets are a lot smaller so she probably would have a lot more mishits. I also doubt if she can get the heavy topspin she gets today with the better larger racquets and strings.

    Here's a video of the 1969 US Open so you can check out the surface. Notice how awful the court is.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvpckZmLaEc

    To put it simply I think the comparisons in tennis of the past and present often are an apples to oranges comparison. Yes we can compare but to me it's not that easy.


    By the way notice that I also wrote greats will be greats in any era. That also means that a player like Nadal in my opinion would be great in the past because I think he would adapt. Not just the other way around.
     
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2012
  13. World Beater

    World Beater Hall of Fame

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    Your hypothesis is fair.

    But i happen to disagree. I am stating that wood racquets take LESS skill to master than modern racquets because of the amount/ number of shots you can manufacture with today's racquets.

    simply, put - there is more that can be done with today's racquets which also necessitates that you must master more to take full advantage of the modern racquets.

    meaning..if you want to hit with power - your swing has to be more violent with modern racquets, but that means you must have much better timing.

    older racquets - much more difficult to generate power and the swings are far less violent. You swing slower but also timing becomes easier.

    Its the same analogy - with F1 cars Vs. mid-size sedan cars.

    If i prove myself to be the best mid size car sedan driver in the world...vs the best F1 driver in the world. Who would impress you more?

    To be the best F1 driver is simply much harder.
     
    Last edited: Dec 15, 2012
  14. World Beater

    World Beater Hall of Fame

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    This is a very PC sort of thing to say (pardon the pun).

    But i do not believe its the truth.

    Most posters in this section - as you can tell from their views are clearly biased towards a particular era or player, even if they do not state it directly.
     
  15. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    The thing is that I'm not sure about others but I always want the current best player to be the best ever because if that person is the best ever (imo) I know I'm enjoying the best possible type of tennis. I feel that way in every sport.

    I think it's possible that Lebron James could be the best ever in basketball but I also believe that Michael Jordan, Kareem Jabbar or Wilt Chamberlain would be fantastic today. I think that Pedro Martinez could be the best starting pitcher I've seem but I'm sure Tom Seaver would be incredible in MLB currently. I think in the NFL that Peyton Manning or Joe Montana are the two best QBs I've seem. In tennis we have some current GOAT candidates in Federer, Nadal and Djokovic. Now I don't believe Nadal and Djokovic have done enough yet but if you project dominance in the future it is possible. I just enjoy watching what I perceive as greatness.

    Incidentally PC is my wife's initials.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2012
  16. World Beater

    World Beater Hall of Fame

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    Lebron just hasn't done enough. Winning one championship is nice - but cleary he has much to do to join the ranks of jordan, chamberlain etc.

    Jordan, kareem etc all have good arguments in their favor. But they also play different positions - so its hard to compare. But jordan i would say was the first SG that combined raw athleticism with great skill. There were other players before that had great skill but perhaps not the same athleticism. Jordan also happens to have had the most media coverage and this certainly helps his legendary status.

    Novak is far from being a goat candidate. Nadal still has much work to do. They are not yet in the conversation.
     
  17. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Incidentally I noticed I wrote baseball for Lebron, that an obvious typo. Just edited my post there. I agree that Lebron hasn't done enough yet but he has a chance to be up there with anyone who ever played basketball.

    I do think Novak has a shot to be a GOAT candidate and an outside chance to be the best ever. I also agree with your comment on Nadal but as with Djokovic he has a chance imo. Funny however when Federer the amont of majors that Nadal has now they were already (prematurely imo) calling him the GOAT. Players like Nadal and Djokovic don't come around too often.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2012
  18. kiki

    kiki Banned

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    ¿ Patty Connors?

    wait, you sound too nice guy:)

    .. and you don´t respect Kodes as much as Jimmy did...
     
  19. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Well I'm a righty with a one handed backhand and Kodes has never beaten me. lol. Of course if he ever played me he would crush me.
     
  20. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    There are several empirical and logical flaws here.

    But I actually agree with your conclusion--except the wooden racquet is the Formula One racer.

    The 100 sq. in. Babolat with poly strings is the mid-size sedan with cruise control and anti-lock brakes. (Read what Djokovic had to say about hitting with a wood racquet.)
     
  21. World Beater

    World Beater Hall of Fame

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    I would like to hear about these logic flaws. Do share...


    No. Wooden racquets is like having an automobile from the 70s with only 4 gears. wooden racquets are just not capable of hitting certain shots due to their weight, lack of aerodynamism - less swing speed, which slows the game down such that hand eye coordination need not be so advanced to time the ball.

    Today's racquets have far more Horsepower...their 0-60 speed (or racquet head acceleration) is far more advanced.

    Poly strings are like increased handling around corners for cars. i.e. greater topspin to hit harder nearer the lines/edges of the court.

    Also racquets are lighter like the aluminum bodied / carbon - fibre cars of today.

    The speed of the game is much higher creating a higher degree of difficulty in timing the ball, and demanding much more precise hand-eye...and of course now foot-eye coordination.

    Your cruise control analogy makes no sense, as the players are hitting the ball incredibly hard with exaggerated swings. So much so that now a player like nadal can hit the ball quite unconventionally. There is also only one player like nadal, meaning that other players have not mastered the technique of being able to hit the ball like him currently.

    This has expanded the spectrum of stroke swings and tactics

    Players of past eras were with their shorter takebacks and less violent stroke patterns. It was more like cruise control for them.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2012
  22. World Beater

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    Federer had a GOAT game when he was at the same age, and also a strong consensus among journalists and some former pros/coaches.

    THat is not the same as being the GOAT. He needed the records to have a more solid argument for it.

    Novak may have a shot, but he currently...that is today/now/presently is NOT a goat candidate. Also the consensus for novak is not nearly as strong as for federer at the same age for many reasons.

    What he may do or not do in the future, we can certainly debate in the future.

    Of course, he may be the best player you have seen - gamewise..but this is not the same as GOAT.
     
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2012
  23. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    The definition of so called GOAT is always tough. I'll give an example. Let's say we have Clark Kent aka Superman and he decides to play ATP tennis for a few years. Clark hits aces all the time, hits all service returns for winners and when he feels like taking it easy on his opponent he puts in a soft kick serve at 155 mph and runs in to put the volley away and Clark always puts volleys away. No one can lob Clark because he can fly to hit any overhead plus he has super speed. Clark Kent plays for three years and wins every point of every match. He win the Grand Slam for three consecutive years and he wins over one hundred tournaments in those three years. Clark decides to retire in order to do his more important job of protecting the Earth as Superman. There is no doubt that for three years Clark is the greatest tennis player that ever lived or probably will ever be. However Clark's twelve majors are below that of Sampras and Federer. Question for all of you, is Clark Kent in this example the greatest tennis player that ever lived? I think he may very well be.

    I think the key word here is dominance. Clark Kent is undoubtedly in this example the most dominant tennis player in history. His dominance is so great that in a few years he accomplished more than just about anybody.
    If he continued there is no doubt he would have smashed all records.


    I often look at players during their peak years and obviously in this hypothetical example during Clark Kent's peak he is by far the greatest ever. It is a definite consideration but some players can be super for a while but later develop injuries that lower their level of play. In tennis for example that may have happened with Don Budge. Sandy Koufax in baseball has been called the greatest pitcher that ever played but he didn't even win 200 games but for five years he was incredible. He easily went into the Baseball Hall of Fame.
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2012
  24. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    I actually think it's unfortunate circumstance that so many people feel like you do on the issue cause as a consequence we have media heads always blabbering about evolution of the game and now current #1 is the best thing since sliced bread.

    Possibility is one thing, saying that Nadal and Novak are GOAT candidates already is quite another and for the record I felt the same way about Fed say at the end of 2006 and personally consider Novak's 2011 to have been the most impressive year in the Open Era aside from Laver's Calendar Grand Slam.

    They both have a shot though Nadal has a better one by far, I'm not a Nadal fan at all (while I am a fan of Novak's) but that's how I feel about it.

    Actually if by they we're presuming media heads like McEnroe, Wilander etc. then what you fail to mention is that they basically did the same for Nadal at the end of 2010, don't tell me you forgot all that "Rafa slam" talk? Media heads have their reasons for hyping the heck out of current dominant player, it's called selling the game.

    Furthemore, I find it a bit contradictory that you think calling Fed the GOAT when he had 11 slams was premature but you have no problem referring Novak with 5 slams to his name as a GOAT candidate, not to mention that Fed had 3 back-to-back seasons comparable (not necessarily better or even equal but undoubtedly comparable) to Novak's 2011.



    Obviously.

    Problem is, your Clark Kent scenario is so drastic that if it happened people would have to reevaluate their standards thoroughly and therefore isn't terribly fit to draw conclusions from for real life comparisons. Novak wasn't Clark Kent like in 2011, he was amazing but the gap between him and the field wasn't that drastic, his wins over Nadal were impressive but they were hardly walks in the park and that goes double for Fed who beat him in 2011 FO SF and had MPs in 2011 USO SF.

    Not to mention that it actually gives more ammunition (or atleast partial credibility/plausibility to their theories/opinion) to people for whom for example a guy like Delpo does seem superhuman in how hard he hits his FH compared to watching Laver and Rosewall on youtube hit their "grandpa BH slices" and therefore Laver's Calendar Grand Slams and/or Rosewall's incredible longevity don't mean all that much because have you seen how hard Delpo pummels the ball? Of course, that way of thinking also creates threads like these.

    Furthemore, if you value dominance so much and you understand how it can affect people's perception about GOAT topic why do you consider media experts calling Fed the GOAT premature (I know why I do/did personally but I don't consider Novak with 5 slams to be a GOAT candidate) ? Afterall, his dominance over a 4 year period was almost unparalleled.
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2012
  25. TMF

    TMF Talk Tennis Guru

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    I agree with World Beater that modern racquet is a F1 equivalent. It's more harder to master an equipment that can do so much and at the same time having to counter the opponent's big serve, spin, speed and angle. Not to mention the players have to be more athletic, faster, greater reflex on movement. All contributed by a superior racquet and string.
     
  26. pc1

    pc1 Legend

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    Zagor,

    I know you're read my posts in the past so I'm sure you know that I don't necessarily believe the current number one is the best ever. I wrote I hope he or she is but it's not necessarily true.

    The Clark Kent example was very drastic to show how tough it is to evaluate who is a GOAT and what are the prerequisites for GOAT. There are so many ways to determine GOAT depending on the so called expert or the player we are writing about.

    A GOAT candidate to me is a player who has always accomplished enough to at least have a record up arguably there with any player that ever lived. You're right, Novak isn't a GOAT candidate by that definition yet but I do believe he has a chance to be given a few more super years. I wouldn't say that about a David Ferrer or David Nalbanian for example. Any player who potential can be a GOAT candidate with a few more super years is always a long shot but heck, to be the greatest of all time is almost always a long shot unless the game is tic tac toe in which the GOAT is many including me. lol.
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2012
  27. zagor

    zagor Talk Tennis Guru

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    Yes but I think the main reason commentators heap so much praise at current best player(s) while claiming how the game is deeper than ever (while I personally remember a heck of a lot more upsets and sets lost by top stars in the 90s), etc. is because many people like to feel that what they're watching right now is something truly special and the best ever and commentators/former player/media experts play on that fact.

    Reality is that while I do think the current top 4 are amazing players, surface homogenization and 32 seeding system makes it easier for top players to dominate to such a degree and it annoys me a bit that so few (if any) players/commentators/tennis analysts etc. even acknowledge but instead all repeat the same thing like parrots (they're the bestest ever, the field is so deep, the game has evolved so much bla bla bla).

    I agree, I think peak play should be valued but of course factors like longevity versatility should also be included but yeah overall everyone has their own idea of what constitutes a GOAT.

    I'd say it's even impossible to determine one single undisputed GOAT, I personally think tiers are the way to go.

    Well Novak has a shot but it's a long way to go, I do think his level of play in 2011 is comparable to anyone and in that regard (peak level of play) he is an all time tennis great already in my book but I also have to respect the consistency in playing great tennis over a longer period from guys like Sampras, Fed, Nadal, Lendl etc.
     
  28. BobbyOne

    BobbyOne Banned

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    zagor, I agree.
     

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