Originally Posted by The_Order
No, Nadal is categorically the best on clay. Nobody comes close to his record on clay.
On grass, there are a few that could be in contention to challenge Federer's status, which is why Fed is NOT categorically the best player ever on grass.
With HC, it's a little hard to tell because the HC at the AO is different to the HC at the USO. At the AO, Fed is clearly not the best ever, especially when it changed to plexicushion.
USO he is also not clearly above every other player that's ever played on the decoturf II.
On Grass, only Sampras competes. With that said, Federer does have the win over Sampras at Wimbledon (though I don't think it really means much, seeing that it was a very close match when neither of them was close to their primes), the extra Wimbledon final, and the Olympic Silver. I personally think Sampras is (was) the better Grasscourter but Federer does have the better claim to being the GGCOAT.
Coming to hard, come on, it's not even close. 5 USOs, no one's got more. 4 AOs, no one's got more. 6 WTF titles, no one's got more. And look at all his Masters titles there. If you're gonna say Federer isn't that great on plexicushion, you'd be wrong. It was changed when he was past his prime and he still won there once. And you can't just disregard his success on Rebound Ace. You could make the same argument to denigrate Nadal's dominance on clay saying he sucked on Blue Clay by the same token.
Either way, Federer's one of the best Grasscourters ever (if not the best), one of the best Hardcourters ever (if not the best), and arguably the 2nd best Claycourter of his era (second only to the GOAT). And Nadal's just the best Claycourter ever.