Originally Posted by Dan Lobb
What you are both ignoring is the question of opposition.
If I win 99% of my matches, and the opponents are Arkinstall, Palafox, Cawthorn, Bonetti, Huber, Worthington, Bottke, Fiala, Pero, Morton, Pottinger, Balestra, Lavanchy (all of whom were respected professionals from the early 1960's), and compare it to someone else's record of 70% against Gonzales, Rosewall, Sedgman, Trabert, Segura, Anderson, Cooper, Rose, Giammalva, Hartwig, McGregor, I would claim that the 70% is better than the 99% record.
I think you're right in the example you use Dan. However with Sampras and Connors the opponents were pretty strong. Connors had Borg, Ashe, Orantes, Tanner, Lendl, Edberg, Newcombe, Rosewall, Okker, Kodes, Vilas, Ramirez, Panatta, Stockton, Vijay Amritraj, Smith, McEnroe, Gerulaitis among others as the players Connors faced in majors. There were other greats like Nastase and Laver who Connors didn't face in majors.
Sampras faced Agassi, Goran, Edberg, Becker, Courier, Chang, Martin, Henman, Krajicek, Philippoussis, Pioline, Korda, Rafter, Kucera, Bjorkman, McEnroe, Lendl among others in majors.
I'm sure there were a number of other top players Sampras didn't face in majors.
It's subjective so the people can look and decide if either one had tougher competition.
Obviously level of play in the Open Era cannot remain the same. Some eras just have to be better than others but there is no way of measuring it.