Originally Posted by jrepac
And that Olympic Gold medal was on clay, over Graf. Not shabby. Let's face it, she should have done a lot more and was a bit lucky in her comeback. But, she deserves some acknowledgment. Still, what could have been....
Quite the contrary I think she was lucky in many ways, but most of all that she burnt out as she did and retired before coming back. The reason I say that is if she continued playing regularly, without getting into drugs and all her off court mischief which gave her a multi year retire and another several years before she began taking it seriously again, she would have never won a slam. She came on with huge promise in 1990 and 1991, but in 1992 and 1993 she had stopped improving and was just treading water. She was 1-10 vs Graf and owned by most of the top 5 so I dont think if she continued playing in 94-96 she was winning any slams. Nor in 97-99 when Hingis took over, and Davenport, Venus, Serena, all emerged. By 2000 she would have been burnt out and not had anything for a late career surge, and if still slamless (most likely) would have retired slamless as well.
With a basically 6 year sabatical from the sport she was refreshed and able to attack her 2nd career, and then capatilized on a period in 2001-early 2002 when she had no real competition other than Venus, and Venus always sucked on slow surfaces so there was your big gaping opening for slams. She took it, and thus is a 3 slam winner. It worked out perfectly for her.
All that said she deserve the HOF induction based on recent ones. She is more accomplished than many of the recent inductees. They just should have much higher standards to begin with, in which case Capriati and many others wouldnt have made it in.