Originally Posted by TMF
If we're going to simply talk about strokes and leave out every aspects of the game from the baseline then I would say Safin. At their best, Safin beat Agassi. His power makes the difference. He was the one who could sneak a win over prime Federer in 2005. Agassi never beat Fed again at the end of 2003.
Yeah really good comparision since Agassi at 34 and 35 years old was at his peak when he played prime Federer.
I would say taking a prime Federer to extra sets in half your matches with him in your mid 30s is more impressive than having a career 2-10 record vs Federer who you are almost the same age as. Also telling prime Safin lost about half his matches to an old 30 something Agassi.
Safin is a great player the 5% of the time he plays well. So was Henri LeConte and many others. Safin makes Agassi look the all time beacon of consistency though. Atleast Agassi when he was out of his slumps sustained a very high level for a year, usually multiple, and pursued top notch fitness and mental focus from match to match for his whole non slum periods. Safin didnt even do this in his best years for a whole year.
PS- in a Agassi vs Safin match, if Safin wins, he usually had alot of help from the serve, and as his most of his wins were tough 5 setters like the 98 French and 2004 Australian, and with the help he had from his serve, it isnt even really truly winning wholy from the baseline. Also when did Safin EVER beat Agassi at his best. Did he ever play Agassi in 1990-1992, 1994-1995, or even beat him from 1999-2002? The answer is no. A 34 year old Agassi and an Agassi starting the year at #122 is not Agassi at his best, sorry. Even Hewitt had more success vs Agassi at something close to his best than Safin managed, despite that most of Safin's true peak was 2000-2002.