Agassi's Greatest Performance?

JoelSandwich

Hall of Fame
Was just wondering about this because so many of the greats have obvious selections for theirs. I don't know if Agassi's is as obvious as some of the others.
Maybe that one performance vs Sampras where he beat him like 6-2 6-2?
 

big ted

Legend
he'd probably choose his '99 FO final even tho he didn't play that well, at least for the first 2 sets...
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
A couple of his AO finals, some matches from 1994 and 1995. Will try and be more specific later.
 

Limpinhitter

G.O.A.T.
he'd probably choose his '99 FO final even tho he didn't play that well, at least for the first 2 sets...
That was definitely Agassi's greatest performance, in my opinion. He was down, out, and not playing very well. It seemed hopeless for him. However, as I recall, in the 3rd set (down 2 sets to none), out of nowhere he started hitting with abandon, turning hard on his forehands and winning points. Suddenly, the tide turned. Agassi had found his confidence and never looked back. That was Agassi's greatest performance and greatest match.
 

macattack

Professional
'99 FO is his signature performance in my opinion. That made his career slam. And it came at a time when he had just pulled himself out of the gutter. The year before, Agassi went from world no. 110 to no. 6. And that '99 FO win kickstarted the second coming.
 

Shaolin

G.O.A.T.
I remember him holding off a GOATing Pim Pim at the AO one year. JJ hit around 50 aces and was just a winner factory, seems like every ball he touched was an ace or winner, yet Andre persevered somehow (5 setter if I remember right).

Edit…4 sets
 

Moose Malloy

G.O.A.T.
Op, Agassi doesn't have the dominating performances in major finals like some other greats, so you have to look a bit deeper.

One of his most dominating performances was vs Rafter at the 95 Australian Open, it was called one of the most anticipated matches in AO history by media. Agassi didn't even face a break point that day, was in the zone.
Another great match was vs Eltingh at Wimbledon later that year, probably the most winners I've seen him hit.
Also his match vs Philippoussis at 00 Wimbledon was pretty impressive.
 

NonP

Hall of Fame
My favorite (there's another vid with only the TB but the picture quality here is better):


What I love about this TB is how both Dre and Pete play with an incredibly thin margin for error but they keep nailing their shots. I tend to think of this as a microcosm of how their rivalry might have unfolded Down Under. After getting torched in the 3rd-set TB 0-7 Agassi realizes he can't be too safe anymore and ups his aggression this time (see how at 1-all he goes for an I-O FH winner clipping the service line as opposed to how in the earlier TB he was content to keep the ball in play only to get whacked by Pete's running FH). But he still finds himself down 4-5 after Pete fires not one but two 2nd-serve aces, so he decides himself to go for two of the biggest serves of his career and miraculously makes both down the T as service winners. And Pete's next 2nd serve was far from a bad one, but his problem was that against this Agassi it had to be perfect (I remember a fellow poster claiming that he'd never seen another match where the players respectively served and returned better), so he gets the ball right back at his feet and while he manages to volley it back he gives Dre too much time to run down the short ball and put it away CC.

The AO match overall might not have been as good as their more famous '01 USO showdown (Pete IIRC tore his hip flexor sometime during this AO SF), but I don't think these two ever reached the peak they did here, at least not at the same time anyway. That said I rather doubt Agassi would've been able to keep it up for long, say over 10-20 matches (there's no way he nails two DTT bombs every time), which is why I tend to think Pete would've gotten the better of Dre even at the AO in the long run. It's a shame we never got to see more of this pure awesomeness from the duo.

I remember him holding off a GOATing Pim Pim at the AO one year. JJ hit around 50 aces and was just a winner factory, seems like every ball he touched was an ace or winner, yet Andre persevered somehow (5 setter if I remember right).

Edit…4 sets
Pim-Pim's serve was indeed on that day but he had "only" 51.0% (76/149) of his serves unreturned, which means Dre was still able to get half of the balls back in play. While it's indeed a good % I've seen as high as 60%, even 70%. That's why you should underrate Agassi's return at your peril. Sure, he might not have gotten as many serves back as say somebody like Murray, but once he got his racquet on the ball nobody did more with it.

Speaking of which....

Op, Agassi doesn't have the dominating performances in major finals like some other greats, so you have to look a bit deeper.

One of his most dominating performances was vs Rafter at the 95 Australian Open, it was called one of the most anticipated matches in AO history by media. Agassi didn't even face a break point that day, was in the zone.
Another great match was vs Eltingh at Wimbledon later that year, probably the most winners I've seen him hit.
Also his match vs Philippoussis at 00 Wimbledon was pretty impressive.
As you know Dre was pretty ridiculous in '95. Some of his returns at the AO and Wimby that year would literally make some commentators chuckle. I was checking the AO Vault and though I don't see the Rafter match I do see Dre's wins over Krickstein and Pete in '95. Maybe I should check out the former just as a reminder of sorts.
 

metsman

G.O.A.T.
Levelwise against an elite opponent I'd probably say the 95 AO final and that whole tournament he was in the zone.

Other great Agassi performances I can think of...92 Wimby semis against Mac was pretty great. 95 wimby semis against Becker he was perfect the first nearly 2 sets but his level dropped a lot after that. Last 3 sets of the 99 FO final were awesome. 00 semis/finals of the AO were great..01 IW finals (Pete wilted at the end but a near flawless performance from Andre), 01 USO quarters, 03 AO final(Schuettler sucked to be fair), 03 Miami final, 04 Cincy semis against Roddick was awesome tennis from both guys, but some of the best serving and clean hitting from Andre I have seen even if his movement wasn't what it once was. One of the very best B03 matches out there.
 

BGod

Legend
99 French Open in terms of the storyline and comeback.

In terms of quality I'd take 2001 Aussie Open Semifinal against Pete. Any quality match would have to come against Pete and that would probably be it. Of course you could always look back at the 95 Final but I just see too many Sampras weaknesses there. Sampras was more hungry in 2001.
 

Sup2Dresq

Hall of Fame
Tournament= 99 French open
Season = Summer of 95 - except for the US Open final
"Wish they would replay it on tv" match = 94 US Open 4th round vs Chang
 

TnsGuru

Professional
His best IMHO was when he beat Pete Sampras in a GS final the 95 Australian Open in 4 sets. FO final close but he played Medvedev in the final, no slouch but he isn't Pete. I say this because he never played well against Sampras in finals....especially GS ones.
 

Boom-Boom

Legend
My favorite (there's another vid with only the TB but the picture quality here is better):

QUOTE]
the quality of tennis was so much better back then between those two than the Djoke/Mugray/Nadalito pushfests :cool:
...winners all over the court, 200kmh aces on 2d serves, incredible returns, passing shots, volleys and running forehands etc...

no ridiculous towelling between each point

no 54+ shot rallyes on hardcourt

no fake MTOs

no 12 ball bounces before serve

no 55 seconds between points

no gongs :D
 

Gizo

Hall of Fame
Some of the best tennis that I saw Agassi play was when he won his title at Washington in 1998. He was in imperious form all week, dropping only 19 games in his 5 matches, only getting broken once, and spending an average of under an hour on court per match.
 

Devilito

Hall of Fame
Beating Becker, McEnroe and Ivanisevic on lightning fast grass in '92...pretty good performance.
watched it live and nobody prior had ever played baseline tennis on grass like that. It was unreal to see and a game changer for tennis. More people should appreciate what Andre did for tennis in 1992. Anyone today watching andre play against becker and mac would be blown away at his shot making on that surface. And remember, this was 90s grass people, not the green clay of today.
 

TnsGuru

Professional
watched it live and nobody prior had ever played baseline tennis on grass like that. It was unreal to see and a game changer for tennis. More people should appreciate what Andre did for tennis in 1992. Anyone today watching andre play against becker and mac would be blown away at his shot making on that surface. And remember, this was 90s grass people, not the green clay of today.
What made this win more amazing is that he had no warm-up tournament prior to W. AA called Nick B. and they had a brief practice and then went to the tournament. Andre didn't even look in good shape at the time. To me, he looked a little heavy, and it wasn't all muscle...it was during his undisciplined phase of his career I believe. AA didn't volley much at all but was returning like a man possessed. McEnroe actually gave him the tip to shorten his backswing on returns and worked too well as Mac found out later in the semi-finals.
 
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Waspsting

Hall of Fame
Over a tournament, Agassi has a lot of special wins. All 4 of his first majors, in fact -

- 92 Wimbledon - the only out and out baseliner to win there before the courts were slowed down

- 94 US - unseeded champion. Only guy to win a 16 seed slam beating 5 seeds

- 95 Aus - win on first appearance and a rare getting one over on Sampras

99 French - to win a slam after so long, coming back from 2 (thrashed) sets to love down in the final

I believe at 03 australian open, he set a tournament record for fewest games lost.
 

Waspsting

Hall of Fame
But I see your point, of the top of my head, I can't think of any particular match where I thought , "this is outrageous", the way I can with sampras.

99 wimbledon semi over Rafter was powerful stuff and I remember being very impressed by his thoroughly out playing defending champion Hewitt at US 02, but neither scoreline looks particularly impressive.

I guess being on the receiving end of a killer outing doesn't count? Agassi has two of the very best -

- 99 Wimbledon final vs Sampras
- 03 year end finals final vs Federer
 
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