Originally Posted by Crisstti
... When he [Novak] hadn't quite yet the level on hard courts.
Lesser players indeed, no doubt (good as they are).
Grumping about Federer not facing Nadal is ok I guess (even though it's still grumping at best, and irrelevant at worst), but Djokovic? Federer was the only player to beat him in a slam in '11, he recently beat him at Wimbledon, and Murray afterwards; I hope that's not too shabby for weak-eraists.
And of course, as always, one must marvel at how Federer is perceived to be the only player able to sustain the same "level" on all surfaces; at his best whenever and wherever, since 2004.
It's also hilarious that Federer gets this weak-era oppurtunist treatment and Nadal is lauded because he faced...Federer in the finals. That's another thing, to think a slam is worth "less" because the opponent in the final is not "worthy". I'd assume Nadal would be the first person to say Roland Garros is not his title by right, and he still has to win 6 matches just to get to the final. Nadal is hands down the best player on clay and RG, not because he beat Federer in most of the finals, but because he managed to win the tournament by winning 7 matches, each time. This will sound weird to most but I believe his best performance at Wimbledon was 2010 and not 2008, beating Berdych in the final didn't change the fact that he had to play some flawless 5-set matches in the earlier rounds and stayed untouchable for the rest.
Ultimately this is what Federer has done in each his slam wins, this is why his consistency in particular at all slams is his most impressive achievement, and I would say it invalidates any weak-era argument you can throw at him; it's not easy to reach many semis and finals at slams, and doing it consistently is likely the hardest thing in this sport. At the end of the day he also has beaten each of the other trio at least once in slams.
Okay so what's this thread about again, why Nadal is a GOAT candidate? It's such cheesy phrases "GOAT", "GOAT candidate". Nadal is one of the greatest ever, I'm not sure how you can claim otherwise.