Originally Posted by vive le beau jeu !
that's a kinda clean way through his draw, but pete didn't have much left in the tank in the SF, after 3 five-setters (martin, bruguera, courier)... a fresh sampras would probably have defeated kafelnikov as he did on so many other occasions (even on heavy 'watered' clay in the 1995 davis cup final at moscow).
and of course, he can also thank stich for (brillantly, it's true) taking the musterminator out...
Pretty much, a totally gassed Sampras at about 20% on his worst surface, then finals choker and mental midget/headcase Stich on his worst surface in a slam final. An enviable situation to put it mildly. Kafelnikov did play some of his best tennis ever at the 1996 French and fully deserved to win, but it certainly is nothing that puts him above any other 2 slam winners, nor answered the question of his ability to beat the toughest opponents in a major event.