Originally Posted by roundiesee
Thanks for the info! Makes me wish that today's pros would have the same level of integrity. I think the last pro to repeatedly refuse a paintjob was Pete Sampras. I've heard that he kept playing the PS 85 without a contract until Wilson actually felt "bad" and offered him one.
I think that 'integrity' is going a bit too far. Pete's reason for refusing a paintjob was simply due to him being so particular about his racquets that he refused to have anything about them altered. That decision was made definite for him when the St.Vincent plant shut down and the stock he purchased all had the old decals on it. No way was he going to allow them to strip the paint off and re-paint them. Of course, if they'd continued to make racquets at the St.Vincent plant they could have painted them to look like whatever they wanted.
End of the day, he allowed the Wilson (who sponsored him in the early days) contract to lapse because the money they were willing to pay him to endorse a racquet that wasn't part of their premier range was negligible. What he lost in racquet endorsement he picked up in 'luggage' endorsement with Tacchini and then Nike (he used one of their duffle bags instead of a Wilson bag).