Why is grand slam count given so much importance in determining GOAT?

Discussion in 'General Pro Player Discussion' started by Thinker_145, May 24, 2010.

  1. Thinker_145

    Thinker_145 New User

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    I dont get this. Each year 2 slams are played on hard courts but only 1 on clay and grass. Now sure you HAVE to be great on HC to be the most successful player of all time but success does not mean "greatest" now does it? Why should HC be given more weightage in determining the greatest player of all time?

    I mean look at aggasi, if tennis wouldnt be played so pre-dominantly on HC then he wouldnt be considered among the greatest I am sure about that, he would have like 5 GS's if there was only 1 HC slam a year.

    Then look at the comparasion between federer and nadal. Federer's weakest surface seems clay(or atleast in comparasion to nadal's game) and federer has only been able to win one clay slam after many many attempts. Nadal's weakest surface is easily HC and that probably means that he has no chance of matching federer's GS record even if he manages to keep himself fit till a long time.

    Federer still holds all the records in the book despite having achieved not so much at clay. Nadal has already won a HC slam but guess what? He still has to win another HC slam to get that elusive honour of having won all 4 slams and he has to make sure it's the US open and not the australian. Whereas federer only had to win one slam on his weakest surface.

    Federer has 9 slams on HC, imagine how things would be if there were 2 clay slams every year and only 1 HC and grass slam? Nadal will prolly have like 9 slams and federer would be at like 12 or 13 at best. If nadal ends up his tennis with like 7 RG and 4 wimbledon then for me his GS performance is just as good as that of federer.

    Cant we see how unfair this all is? Trust me I am not here to undermine federer as much as it may seem, I am just interested to see what you guys opinions are.

    I just dont see how HC is anymore "better" than clay or grass cuz if you are giving it more weightage than that is exactly what you are implying. Sure the most successful players in the history of tennis with the way things are right now will have to be really great on HC but not necessarily to be the greatest. If the australian open ceases to be a GS or it shuffles it's playing surface every year, only then can we give as much importance to GS count as people seem to give it.
     
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  2. OKUSA

    OKUSA Hall of Fame

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    On the other hand, people still recognize Borg as the greatest and he never won a Hard Court major.

    That's just how it is, you have 4 majors and 3 surfaces, one is going to have to be played twice.
     
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  3. TheLoneWolf

    TheLoneWolf Banned

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    It is what it is. Yes, there are 2 HC slams vs 1 clay and 1 grass. This hasn't always been like that, with AO and USO surfaces shifting throughout the years. But it is what it is.

    Does this fact shift slams in favor of someone that is more adept at hardcourts? Yes. Is that unfair? Probably, but life is unfair in general. It is what it is.

    However, considering Federer as GOAT (as if GOAT made any sense to begin with) based solely on slam count is dumb. For the reason that you give, and for many others.

    For example, some slams have not always been favored by players. Borg, for example, only entered AO once. Yet he still managed to get 11 slams in his short career. In my mind, Borg is greater than Fed.

    I predict that you are going to get a lot of upset people calling you names and putting silly pictures up. Get ready for the usual suspects. :)
     
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  4. lidoazndiabloboi

    lidoazndiabloboi Semi-Pro

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    The 4 majors are the pinnacle of this tennis, just like the NBA championship, Super Bowl, World series and the World Cup. That is why they are regarded so highly. Just like what others have said, it is what it is. There are 4 majors, on 4 surfaces, all of different speeds, even though 2 are hard courts. Federer has given himself a chance to win as many majors as possible with his incredible semifinals streak. So that just shows great consistency even in the clay court season. Because he made so many French Open finals, i believe just winning at least 1 of them was needed to establish his greatness.
     
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  5. West Coast Ace

    West Coast Ace G.O.A.T.

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    The money has gotten so big. Top players are now 'brands'. So they don't have to play as much. But they all play the majors (when healthy) - thus the increase in importance - it's the one thing that spans the history of the sport. The Masters 1000 is a fairly recent creation. And (at least for the men) they're 3 out of 5 - that's the truest, best test. With the racket/string technology it's easier for a guy can get hot in a 2 out of 3 shootout and bag an upset over one of the top seeds.
     
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  6. dh003i

    dh003i Legend

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    How about they play the USO on wood for a different surface?
     
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  7. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    How about moving one of HC slams and giving it to Asia. We have one in Americas, One in Australia, two in Europe, NONE in Asia.
     
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  8. piece

    piece Professional

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    Umm well because there are essentially only 3 surfaces in the modern game, and four slams, 1 of those surfaces is going to have to be used at at least two of the slams. I don't know why you'd complain about a situation that is pretty much impossible to avoid. Unless you're suggesting that slams rotate their surfaces to make it so 2 are clay one year, 2 grass the next, then 2 hardcourt the next, or maybe you're suggesting an indoor carpet slam?
     
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  9. piece

    piece Professional

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    You can't just lump north and south together as "Americas". Why don't I just lump Europe and Asia together because they're one landmass (with a much less discriminate border than north and south american, I might add) and say that Asia does have their own slam? Why should Asia get one instead of south america? Or africa for that matter? Australia's part of the Asia-Pacific region anyway and is lumped together with Asia in other sporting categories (like world cup qualifying group etc)
     
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  10. tudwell

    tudwell Hall of Fame

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    Maybe Nadal should have tailored his game to the most prominent surface in modern tennis. It's only logical.
     
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  11. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    I am in full agreement with your argument.

    Feel free to Lump Asia , Europe and any other continent you see fit.i never understood the significance of continents anywayz.

    One Slam for each continent . Is that too much to ask?.

    May be we should have rotating Slams. Each country gets their turn to host a Slam. I am sure some countries can pony up enough resources to make it worth their while.
     
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  12. piece

    piece Professional

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    A slam for each continent probably is too much to ask because that would require at least 5 slams (if you exclude Australia and Antarctica) and most probably 6 (including Australia). Rotating slams between countries is a better option, but I'm sure alot of countries would prefer not to have to build a huge tennis centre that will probably be grossly underused in the future. This idea does seem a bit of a hassle, but I'm sure it could probably work. I don't mind things the way they are though, I'm Australian:)
     
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  13. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    I am more for change. Dont like the monopoly of countries and slams. For example, Tennis Australia and USTA exchange wild cards to allow their country players to participate in other country's slam. I am sure similar arrangements exist between AO,W,F,USO.

    Now , lets take countries like Spain, Russia, Switzerland, croatia, Czech, etc. All of them have produced great tennis players and some of them have an excellent tennis infrastructure and some of those countries respect tennis players as god.

    Why shouldnt these nations have a chance to host their own slam, promote their own players a bit (after all they have a good tennis pedigre)

    May be i am not clear in my thought process but ...
     
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  14. Chadwixx

    Chadwixx Banned

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    Grand slams are like the seasons finals.

    The french and Usopen has a solid season (many tournaments) leading up to the big event (surface finals, french and USopen). They just kinda throw wimbledon and the AO out there.

    The schedule does need to be tweaked (AO wimbledon), you should have small tournaments and a masters series that build up to the grand slam.

    Indian wells and miami tournaments are really out of place, its like, hey guys!!! The AO has ended and we have clay and grass coming up.
     
    Last edited: May 24, 2010
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  15. Cup8489

    Cup8489 Legend

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    I dont care what happens, as long as they always play at Wimbledon.

    But the addition of major tournaments to the current roster of 4 seems like a bad idea to me. IMHO, it would inflate the careers of future players, much like the AO does for today's generation vs the previous generations.

    IIRC, the majors are all the oldest tournaments in the game that still exist, and because of their location/history they are elevated to that 'ultimate' status. I would not mind moving the AO from Melbourne to elsewhere in the pacific/asian theatre, but seeing as how many male greats came from that continent, it's hard to make a case. This may not be true for GB, but realistically that's where tennis got its start, and so they have a slam. France has a slam because of popularity of the sport there as a result of being so close to GB, and the four musketeers. Likewise, the US is where tennis really started to become a globalized market, with the US nationals being considered for a long, long time to be second only to Wimbledon (seriously, which two are the most anticipated around the world, and which two define a person's career more than the others?)

    For that reason, I think that 4 is great, but this is just my opinion. I read a post back somewhere claiming that Borg is greater than Fed b/c he didn't play the AO but once, but if you subtract Fed's and Sampras' totals at AO from their tally, both have 12 majors, one more than Borg.

    I think that's pretty telling, that both men were more successful all around than Borg. Hell, both of them were as dominant as Borg at Wimbledon, Sampras winning 7 out of 8 years there, while Federer has won 6 out of 7 years, including 7 straight finals. Borg's winning of the FO-Wimbledon double is also incredible, but has been shown to be possible for other players as well, if they want it enough.
     
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  16. vortex1

    vortex1 Banned

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    How about ice?
     
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  17. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    Sorry but just because they have been done that way isnt a good reason. Tennis historically may have been helped by those locations but thats not the case any more. Lots of other countries have considerably picked up. Wimbledon isnt any more ultimate (may be for old timers) and some of that is strictly marketing /media manipulation.

    Olympics is very successful and it has a good tradition--- countries can bid to host it. I dont like monopoly (funny i should say it as Roger federer almost seems to be doing just that) and certainly cant stand these countries respective tennis federations dictating terms and overlooking other tournaments/countries as second class citizens.
     
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  18. joeri888

    joeri888 G.O.A.T.

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    I'm not even American, but obviously, Hardcourts just are more important today than Clay and grass. Not only more Slams, but also more MS tournaments and smaller events are played on the surface. It's just not like every surface bears the same weight. Otherwise Nalbandian (indoor goat) would be as good as Nadal (claycourt goat).
     
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  19. Sentinel

    Sentinel Bionic Poster

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    Wimbledon will be held in Chile next year, and Somalia after that and ...:)
     
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  20. djokovicgonzalez2010

    djokovicgonzalez2010 G.O.A.T.

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    Get rid of the USO. Bad crowd, bad atmosphere, bad surface
    Instead, make Shanghai a slam. Nice crowd, lovely stadium, fun to watch
     
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  21. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    Wimbledon may have a superstar status in tennis. An even bigger event, Olympics can be held in London (2012) and who knows after , may be chile and then somalia.

    If the countries can pony up resources, i dont see why not.
     
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  22. Rippy

    Rippy Hall of Fame

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    That's the tradition of the Olympics though. It's just different to Wimbledon. What works for one tournament may not work for another.
     
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  23. raiden031

    raiden031 Legend

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    So there's another poster who thinks tennis should revolve around what suits Nadal.
     
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  24. sh@de

    sh@de Hall of Fame

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    I suppose you could say because HC is (or was anyway) the "medium surface" in between clay courts and grass courts, in a way such that clay experts and grass maestros could still excel on hardcourts, even if the clay lovers couldn't transition to grass well enough and the grass players couldn't to clay.

    So in that sense, it's the "fairest" surface.



    That's one way of looking at it I suppose. Another way would simply be like many have already said: it is what it is. That's the way the slams are played, they're all different, and they're all incredibly prestigious.
     
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  25. jerriy

    jerriy Hall of Fame

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    But it doesn't!

    Just plain old career slam doesn't have more wieght (in terms of indicating that one's ability compared to say winning two Wimbledons & two French).

    That's precisely why Borg is the GOAT. He did the most difficult feat and that wasn't winning all four slams once or twice.
     
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  26. borg number one

    borg number one Legend

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    Slam count to measure player "greatness" really kicked in when Sampras tied Roy Emerson, who had 12 majors. So, he was "chasing" Roy Emerson at 12. The Calendar Year Grand Slam (CYGS) was the "measure of greatness" before Sampras was trying to tie Emerson. Don Budge had one CYGS in 1938 and Rod Laver had one in 1962 before the Open Era and then another in 1968. So, the "chase" for Borg was trying to win the CYGS, not amassing the largest "total major count". Perhaps some Tennis Marketing kicked in, because once Sampras had 11 slams, suddenly counting Slams became the thing to do, in terms of measuring all time Tennis Greats. It does measure performance at the most important events, as well as in effect "longevity" and "consistency" in some ways (repeating peak performances). Yet, it's good to keep things in context.
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2010
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  27. jerriy

    jerriy Hall of Fame

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    Cuz of the simple fact that hard court, especially at the majors wasn't as relevant then as it is now.
     
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  28. Tennis_Monk

    Tennis_Monk Hall of Fame

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    with all due respect to Wimbledon, there is lot of media manipulation.They got to have something to hype (and having 100-200 yrs of regularity helps)
    I dont find wimbledon to be any more than any other Grandslams. It has it quirks and in my mind , it is in the middle of pack of grandslams.

    Add another slam from Asia or African or south americas and within a few years it will have the same status as others. Its all in marketing(AO markets itself as people's slam and true ,it does offer a better experience for people than other slams; wimbledon uses its history; Usopen ofcourse markets as 'money thirsty' slam; French is ofcourse french;
     
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  29. Totai

    Totai Professional

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    Imagine if there was no clay slam, then Nadal would only have 2!

    I would say a majority of tennis courts world wide are HC, therefore more people growing up playing on HC. Makes sense to have 2 slamson HC.
     
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  30. namelessone

    namelessone Legend

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    I think it is because Slams are usually the hardest to win and because people need a simple system to gauge how great a player is with history in mind.
    For me it is too simplistic. Excuse me but there have been great players,with terrific games and entertaining personalities who never won a slam but were great players nonetheless. And there were not-so-greats who did win a slam but who history won't remember as fondly as those guys.

    If you take people who watched 90's tennis and ask them,who did you like more,Rios(not a slam winner) or Joachim Johansson(won AO 02'),I'd wager that most people would say Rios. However history would place Johansson higher because of that one slam run. But Rios has more career titles,18-9(5 of which were masters),got to nr.1 unlike the swede,both have one slam final,both being in AO,difference being that Johansson won his whereas Rios lost it.

    And before anybody gets confused,no,rios did not have a entertaining personality. By all accounts he was a pricck.
     
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  31. aphex

    aphex Banned

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    I agree.
    The Australian should be played on carpet.
    I hope you agree.
    (even though Rafito would have 1 less slam)
     
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  32. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    actually, this is not the way it always was. Back in the day, The AO, Wimbledon, and US Open were all on grass, with the French being on clay.

    Later, the US changed it's surface to clay (har-tru), and then finally to deco turf (hard).

    The AO was played on grass until it changed to rebound ace, which is way different than deco.
     
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  33. kournacopia

    kournacopia Banned

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    Ok OP, so why don't we remove AO? Players in the 70/80s didn't even play there anyways. Fed still has 12 slams, and it would still destroy Nadal. So even if you make it 'fair', Fed is GOAT.
     
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  34. THUNDERVOLLEY

    THUNDERVOLLEY G.O.A.T.

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    Ah, yes...we know that little group...
     
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  35. cknobman

    cknobman Legend

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    OP: use logic and youll answer your own question.

    Grand Slams are the only consistent tournaments to host all the top players (barring injury), not give any bye's to seeds, play best of 5 every round, etc... etc....
     
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  36. drakulie

    drakulie Talk Tennis Guru

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    actually, many players skipped the French as well, so might as well take out those slams for fed/nadal. he still destroys everyone.
     
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  37. hoodjem

    hoodjem G.O.A.T.

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    Right. Let's make Wimbers change to HC.

    Shouldn't there be an indoor carpet slam?
     
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  38. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    If so then Panco is the GOAT with 27 Pro Slams.
     
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  39. Grandslamtalk

    Grandslamtalk New User

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    No, that is not entirely true. The US Open and the Australian Open are both played on hard courts, but the US Open's hardcourts are much faster than the AO.
     
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  40. Andy G

    Andy G Semi-Pro

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    This is a ridiculous statement. So by that line of thinking, Nadal could win 15 FO titles, but never enter any other major therefore he can claim to be better because he never played the other events. Why not just skip the slams all together and at the end of your career claim to be the GOAT because of how many slams you would've won, if only you would've played.
     
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  41. Texastennis

    Texastennis Rookie

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    As various people have pointed out, the gs count has only recently been considered a factor of major importance - when Emerson was the count leader, nobody said that = the greatest of all time...

    Hard courts - there's tremendous variation in pace so to count "hard court" as a homogeneous category ignores an important reality.

    Although this is a pointless in the never to be ended way debate, I think a basket of factors (calendar grand slam, career grand slam, the FO-Wimbledon double - all very difficult tasks and the F0-W same year double may be as difficult as the career slam) are all very important as well as the GS count. Looking at all those, I'd put Laver, Borg and Federer as the (current - Nadal may yet join) top players of the open era.
     
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  42. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    Borg is canidate for GOAT because he has the highest winning percentage.

    Meaning that he wins more than he loses, showing that he is better than all other players.

    Not to mention his Wim/FO records that will never be repeated and certainly not beaten.


    FYI Laver and Pancho have way more slams than Roger.
     
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  43. LeoR

    LeoR Banned

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    I can't believe some people want to create new slams out of nowhere or want to change slams of countries.

    Are they really tennis fans?

    Tennis is great because of its history.

    Nations who host grand slam are not hosting grand slam because they are rewarded for producing good players. It's just the tradition, these tournaments are the history of tennis.

    They can not be touched.

    4 slams, not one more.

    Australian Open, Roland Garros, Wimbledon, Us Open.

    It should stay like that forever. We don't care about new nations, they can have their tournaments, ATP 500 or whatever. But slams are there to stay the same.
     
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  44. frisco

    frisco Banned

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    OP is just a *********. Proof? His only counter example is to consider a situation where there are 2 clay slams. Why not consider an even faster surface than USO HC, but is not HC. Then difference between Nadal and Federer would be even greater. Too many biased posts on this forum.
     
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  45. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    Actually this is not correct, what is Roger's carpet record??? Now Soderling would be very excited for a carpet slam LOL But not Federer.

    So yes there is a great bias for HardCourt with 2 Slams and 6 masters.
     
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  46. Max G.

    Max G. Hall of Fame

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    The fact of the four slams being considered remotely even isn't a tradition - the Australian Open wasn't on par with the others until the 90s.

    There are other tournaments with just as long of a history as those four. The Italian Open and German Open (until recently).

    The decision to make those four tournaments be elevated above the others isn't as traditional as you're trying to say, I think.
     
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  47. frisco

    frisco Banned

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    What is not correct? The OP is indeed a *********, as are you. This is correct. No one mentioned carpet, I certainly didn't.
     
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  48. sh@de

    sh@de Hall of Fame

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    QFT.

    10 chars.
     
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  49. akv89

    akv89 Hall of Fame

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    According to atptennis.com, Federer is 50-19 on carpet, with most of those losses coming during his earlier years on tour. I'd say he'd favor a carpet slam.
     
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