Originally Posted by pc1
Could you give me a link to the posts you wrote that you asked me some questions?
I think when we look at a player's strength of course we look at won-lost record but even that can be deceiving as you pointed out so well in discussing Emerson and Laver. We have to back the statistics in which we analyze the records of the players along with studying the history of the time. If we were just to look at won-lost record we would think Laver in 1962 was superior to Laver in 1963 but that is far from the case. Laver at the end of 1963 was a far superior player to himself in 1962. The stats would not show it except we know from studying tennis history that he played in a far superior league if you can call it a league.
It frankly annoys me when I read some so call experts saying one player is better than another because when they played this great, the great made him feel helpless or that he had beautiful strokes. I used to read of one all time great who from the accounts in the books seemed to be all but unbeatable yet in looking at the records he did lose a lot more than I expected. Don't get me wrong, the guy's record was still fantastic but the books almost indicated that not only did he almost never lose but he crushed everyone. Brad Gilbert was not known for the best looking strokes in the world but the guy became one of the top players in the world.
My questions were in this post: http://tt.tennis-warehouse.com/showt...80#post7098680
Those questions had to do with Federer and the current era, though of course I agree with what you say about past eras when circumstances were not uniform. The amateur and pro games barely had anything in common, so the yearly W/L records cannot be used across that divide. You'd be much safer comparing within one or the other -- for example, looking at Emmo's yearly W/L records on the amateur tour.
But even then the numbers get distorted, because if you're an amateur, one day your greatest rival might disappear into the pro tour.
Today circumstances are uniform, and changes in rivalries are more gradual.
As far as Budge, I get what you're saying, but I have a hard time identifying with it, because I just never got exposed to all those stories about his invincibility. That may be because I didn't get into tennis until '85; and I studied other past greats more than Budge. Maybe if I was following tennis in the 70s like you were I would have been more exposed to stories about his legend.
For me Budge was just the first guy who won the Grand Slam, but a guy who won only 6 Slam titles in all and then sort of disappeared into the mists of a world war and later the pro scene. In other words I never had the impression that he was The Greatest, or something like that. Again, that's probably just due to not coming across the same things you did.
Originally Posted by pc1
Some players like Leconte look great but they often found a way to lose.
Got a good chuckle from this