Originally Posted by adidasman
Didn't that mean he had more adjustments to make, more abrupt shifts between surfaces that would have messed with his game and his consistency? It's not just about the majors he won - it's about what he had to do in between those majors. Laver didn't have the luxury of picking and choosing his tournaments the way a guy like Federer does; he still had to pay the bills, so he had to play pretty much everything he was physically able to play. If you don't think that gives a decided edge to Laver in terms of his accomplishments, you're daft.
That's a nice point, and easy to forget with all the focus on majors and the constant debates about the Grand Slam.
If you look at Federer's 2011 tournaments
, he played different surfaces, but in solid uninterrupted blocks. He played all hardcourt tournaments through March, followed by a stretch of clay that ended at Wimbledon. From there all his remaining tournaments were hardcourt. He made the switched from outdoor to indoor tournaments once in the season (his last 3 tournaments were indoors).
That's not to say that he faced no changes in that time period. He went through different kinds of hardcourt (but that's true of Laver too). And he switched from outdoor to indoor (but that was certaintly true of Laver).
Laver's schedule in '69, I don't have the details of. But I doubt he got to play the different surfaces in uninterrupted blocks -- if only because it was such chaos at the start of the Open Era!