"And what would Djokovic do to someone like Sampras? It would be a cleanup."

Rovesciarete

Hall of Fame
Yes Sampras made hay on the glorious meadows of Wimpy when the gras was right still Nick undervalues Pistol Pete as a server.
 

jm1980

Talk Tennis Guru
Radar guns also measure a bit differently than they did back then. The speed is taken right off the racquet now and I believe it was not like that in the 90s.

And for Kyrgios to suggest that Sampras wasn't hitting lines or corners ...
This is a myth, at least as far as the 90s are concerned. Sampras was serving in the 120s and 130s, which would have been impossible if speeds were measured at the net
 

Kralingen

Talk Tennis Guru
Nick's "consistent 220km/h serve in the corners" maxed out at 210 this match.


Max Speed 210 km/h 130 mph
1st Serve Average Speed 196 km/h 121 mph
2nd Serve Average Speed 157 km/h 97 mph
That was because he was trying to expose Medvedev’s laughable return position - and expose he did, it was a masterclass of placed serve&volley and tactically smart. He embarrassed the hapless Russian, pummeling him constantly as Medvedev was unable to mount any sort of resistance. A truly embarrassing performance from Daniil on his favoured hard court, a spanking and tennis lesson delivered by the biggest clown on Tour.

One of many reasons I can’t take Medvedev seriously.
 

matterer

Rookie
That was because he was trying to expose Medvedev’s laughable return position - and expose he did, it was a masterclass of placed serve&volley and tactically smart. He embarrassed the hapless Russian, pummeling him constantly as Medvedev was unable to mount any sort of resistance. A truly embarrassing performance from Daniil on his favoured hard court, a spanking and tennis lesson delivered by the biggest clown on Tour.

One of many reasons I can’t take Medvedev seriously.
How about this one?

Where's the match where he averages 220?

Here's Alcaraz averaging 182 against Djokovic. Barely faster than Sampras' second serve average. Djokovic didn't exactly eat him alive
 

RS

Bionic Poster
Right but totally ignored the context. Game is not same thanks to the equipment, ofcourse Sampras playing serve and volley will be destroyed by the likes of Nadal and Djokovic today. Game has changed so much so that you may call it a different code of tennis . I don't know why people are mad at Kyrgios.
The topic is one that has people on edge and Kyrgios is Kyrgios hence the reaction.
 

Mustard

Bionic Poster
I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you actually believe what you're saying.

Sampras has a sum total of 3 QFs and 1 SF at the FO. No finals, no slam wins. By the numbers, he's behind David Ferrer at RG. A David Ferrer who lost every RG match the two played, got a single set, and was given 2 bagels in those 13 sets they played. That's being manhandled, and Ferrer at least made a final, another semifinal on top of that, and 4 more quarterfinals.

Nadal vs. Sampras at the FO wouldn't be close. Ever. And I'm not particularly convinced even the best Sampras (who was bageled by Kafelnikov in 96, barely edged out Courier and Martin) would beat decent versions of Djokovic or Federer.
Nadal vs. Isner at the 2011 French Open shows how Sampras could challenge. Isner won 2 sets with big serving and winning two tiebreaks. If Nadal imposes his style a lot more, then it's much more difficult for any opponent. Sampras would be aiming to keep points shorter, and use his serve as much as possible. Nadal would be looking for grinding rallies and to make Sampras move around a lot. Clay obviously favours Nadal's style massively.
 

jl809

Hall of Fame
Didn’t Sampras beat Hewitt in straights at the USO in 2000 lol?

Guess Hewitt only just learned how to return serve in the year between the two matches, and that can be the ONLY explanation for how that result panned out, not PETE having an off day in his postprime, coming off an absolutely monster draw, etc

A bit like how Safin 'figured out' Sampras in USO 2000 only to be straight setted by him at USO 2001 lol
 

Kralingen

Talk Tennis Guru
How about this one?

Where's the match where he averages 220?

Here's Alcaraz averaging 182 against Djokovic. Barely faster than Sampras' second serve average. Djokovic didn't exactly eat him alive
I don’t have any comment on those matches nor do I agree with Nick’s comments.

In fact, that match specifically disproved Nick’s comments about serve speed. Sampras wasn’t going for pure pace… he was setting up his volley, and in this match, Nick followed a similar strategy. I was just highlighting the fact that placement and variety, not speed, can completely discombobulate and demolish Medvedev’s returning. Feeding purely pace to such a limited player with such a heinous return position is not an optimal strategy - the key is to stretch him out wide and pick him off, not to serve as hard as possible.
 

The Sinner

Semi-Pro
Kyrgios' comments about serve speed are also off the mark. Sampras' fastest serve, I think, was 140mph, which is about 225kph.

Philippoussis did 142mph (around 229kph), Rusedski broke that with 143mph (230kph) and I think went up to 148mph (238kph). Roddick did 155mph (249kph). Tanner in 1978 allegedly did 153mph (246kph) with a metal racquet. Ivanisevic never did better than 136mph (219kph), but it was hard to read.

Serve speeds largely went up more in the mid 1990s.
Pretty sure Scud’s top speed serve was clocked at 239km/hr.
 

DSH

Talk Tennis Guru
Yea because Sampras was depleted in that final. If he played like he did against Agassi in the quarters, good luck to Hewitt because he's going to need it. Just to comment on your #22 post, the one that really stands out to me is Rusedski. It was a monstrous serve and he was breaking the serve speed records at Wimbledon, and how monstrous his serve was was talked about a lot. So him saying guys topping out around 200 km/h is so far from the truth and tells me he doesn't watch older tennis matches.
Sampras was 'kamikaze' after losing the first set in a tiebreaker against the Australian player.
(n)
 

Oval_Solid

Hall of Fame
make djoker play back to back days in the semis and finals against a younger opponent and see how much cleaning up he does
 

nolefam_2024

Talk Tennis Guru
make djoker play back to back days in the semis and finals against a younger opponent and see how much cleaning up he does
Who cares after Nole already turned age 36. Now it doesn't matter oval solid. They had chance at age 30/31/32/33/34/35/36. Nole won 2 ATP finals in this time, beating younger opponents to pulp.

Now it won't matter.


It doesn't matter what excuses you make now. Nole is far ahead of Pete.
 

thrust

Legend
I'll give you the benefit of the doubt and assume you actually believe what you're saying.

Sampras has a sum total of 3 QFs and 1 SF at the FO. No finals, no slam wins. By the numbers, he's behind David Ferrer at RG. A David Ferrer who lost every RG match the two played, got a single set, and was given 2 bagels in those 13 sets they played. That's being manhandled, and Ferrer at least made a final, another semifinal on top of that, and 4 more quarterfinals.

Nadal vs. Sampras at the FO wouldn't be close. Ever. And I'm not particularly convinced even the best Sampras (who was bageled by Kafelnikov in 96, barely edged out Courier and Martin) would beat decent versions of Djokovic or Federer.
Ferrer, who I much admire, was at his best on clay. Sampras was at his best on grass, fast and medium hard courts as well as indoor surfaces. I believe Sampras beat Kafelniknov on a very slow clay court in DC played in Moscow. Again, Kaf, and Courier were better than Pete on clay but Pete was better on all other surfaces. I do believe, that using the same equipment, Pete would give: Rafa, Roger and Novak very tough matches on other medium and fast surfaces. Also, if Peter was the same age of the big three, he would have kept his two handed backhand and would be tougher for anyone today to beat.
 

mtommer

Hall of Fame
Is he right or wrong?
I would say wrong, but unlike some here, I don't believe it's because he is dissing on older players. I think the line pretty much exhibits why he hasn't won a Slam. His thinking is linear. He is a great talent at hitting a tennis ball but not so great at winning tennis matches. By his own words, hitting 225 km/h still isn't causing Novak to lose very often. So if hitting that big isn't the solution, what is? Well, the "is" is what greats of the past had. Even more recently, Federer, who routinely kept his serves around the 120 mph mark, was able to win against Novak. Nadal beat Novak. I'm sure Sampras wouldn't win all of his matches against Novak....but he would win some. So would Becker. So would Agassi. So would Lendl.
 

NeutralFan

G.O.A.T.
The topic is one that has people on edge and Kyrgios is Kyrgios hence the reaction.

Ironically Kyrgios has maintained that they were great for their time and it's true. Does TTW expect past legend to conquer all eras or what? It's not disrespect to Laver to say he won't be a top 20 player if Laver of 60s completes today.
 

kevin qmto

Hall of Fame
To be fair to Nick, I did just watch the extended highlights of Sampras vs Hewitt and Lleyton did absolutely take Pete to the cleaners via endless passing shots in sets 2 and 3.
 
A

ALCARAZWON

Guest
The Sampras running forehand is a bigger weapon than anything in Djokovic's game.
And the Sampras 2nd Serve would render Djokovic useless in tiebreakers.
Sampras dominates this rivalry at Wimbledon and US Open in particular.
The Australian Open is harder because Sampras hated that weather.
Yes Djokovic would win their Roland Garros match-up.
 

TripleATeam

G.O.A.T.
The Sampras running forehand is a bigger weapon than anything in Djokovic's game.
And the Sampras 2nd Serve would render Djokovic useless in tiebreakers.
Sampras dominates this rivalry at Wimbledon and US Open in particular.
The Australian Open is harder because Sampras hated that weather.
Yes Djokovic would win their Roland Garros match-up.
Tasty
 

Martin J

Hall of Fame
Nadal vs. Isner at the 2011 French Open shows how Sampras could challenge. Isner won 2 sets with big serving and winning two tiebreaks. If Nadal imposes his style a lot more, then it's much more difficult for any opponent. Sampras would be aiming to keep points shorter, and use his serve as much as possible. Nadal would be looking for grinding rallies and to make Sampras move around a lot. Clay obviously favours Nadal's style massively.
I've always wondered what adjustments Nadal would do in order to deal with players like Edberg, Rafter and Sampras on clay.
A player like Bruguera would return their serves (with success) from inside the baseline, but that's not Nadal's style nor is he very good at it. By the time his return reaches these servers, they'll already be at the net.
Now, Nadal is one of the best passers ever (if not the best), but these guys knew how to close/cover the net better than anyone Nadal's faced so it would be entertaining to witness such matches with styles that are polar opposites.
 

NeutralFan

G.O.A.T.
I've always wondered what adjustments Nadal would do in order to deal with players like Edberg, Rafter and Sampras on clay.
A player like Bruguera would return their serves (with success) from inside the baseline, but that's not Nadal's style nor is he very good at it. By the time his return reaches these servers, they'll already be at the net.
Now, Nadal is one of the best passers ever (if not the best), but these guys knew how to close/cover the net better than anyone Nadal's faced so it would be entertaining to witness such matches with styles that are polar opposites.

Fed tried SNV against Nadal on all surfaces including clay and it didn't turn out very favorable to Fed. Sorry to say but modern rackets have killed SNV and these players trying SNV in modern baseline era will be a toast.
 

Martin J

Hall of Fame
Fed tried SNV against Nadal on all surfaces including clay and it didn't turn out very favorable to Fed. Sorry to say but modern rackets have killed SNV and these players trying SNV in modern baseline era will be a toast.
Federer is not a S&V player nor does he posses net skills as these players so using him as an example is wrong imo.
Fed would also get passed 3 times in a row, lose his confidence and move back on the baseline. Edberg/Sampras/Rafter will continue charging the net even if Nadal hits ten successful passing shots in a row, and that's a huge difference. Plus Stefan's or Pat's kick serves give them all the time in this world if a returner doesn't take them early (which, again, is not Nadal's specialty), so I still think they could challenge him (in a different way). Of course, he would still be a big, big favorite.
 

Rovesciarete

Hall of Fame
Sampras basically had the disguise, placement, and variety of Federer on the serve but hit it 5-10 mph faster. Sampras today would still have one of the absolute best serves on tour. Probably S&V wouldn't be so monolithic a strategy on faster surfaces, but it would definitely be a strong play to weave in 20-25% of the time or so.

Agreed, but I would argue he would serve and volley somewhat less. Maybe 15%.
 

Honza

Semi-Pro
Fed tried SNV against Nadal on all surfaces including clay and it didn't turn out very favorable to Fed. Sorry to say but modern rackets have killed SNV and these players trying SNV in modern baseline era will be a toast.


Very true. Not just the rackets but modern equipment overall.
Its not like the players decided out of boredom to not play SNV. The equipment evolution and slower surfaces made them adapt.
 

NeutralFan

G.O.A.T.
Federer is not a S&V player nor does he posses net skills as these players so using him as an example is wrong imo.
Fed would also get passed 3 times in a row, lose his confidence and move back on the baseline. Edberg/Sampras/Rafter will continue charging the net even if Nadal hits ten successful passing shots in a row, and that's a huge difference. Plus Stefan's or Pat's kick serves give them all the time in this world if a returner doesn't take them early (which, again, is not Nadal's specialty), so I still think they could challenge him (in a different way). Of course, he would still be a big, big favorite.

SNV went out of fashion because it didn't work.why do you think vollies worked before poly and modern equipments? without poly passing shots and accuracy of baseline play was much lower. I am sorry to say but these SnV players from past would be lucky to be top 20 players in 2008-2014 let alone beating big 3. Fed wasn't miles off the names you suggested,only difference is Fed's rivals were best baseliners and passers in the world with modern racket at disposal. Fed would look impressive had he played Nadal or Djokovic without poly. On top of that they didn't have baseline game anywhere close to Fed and mere volley strategy would settle Nadal and Djokovic who would be happy to pass all day.
 

Razer

Legend
Fed tried SNV against Nadal on all surfaces including clay and it didn't turn out very favorable to Fed. Sorry to say but modern rackets have killed SNV and these players trying SNV in modern baseline era will be a toast.
SNV went out of fashion because it didn't work.why do you think vollies worked before poly and modern equipments? without poly passing shots and accuracy of baseline play was much lower. I am sorry to say but these SnV players from past would be lucky to be top 20 players in 2008-2014 let alone beating big 3. Fed wasn't miles off the names you suggested,only difference is Fed's rivals were best baseliners and passers in the world with modern racket at disposal. Fed would look impressive had he played Nadal or Djokovic without poly. On top of that they didn't have baseline game anywhere close to Fed and mere volley strategy would settle Nadal and Djokovic who would be happy to pass all day.

Over 2 decades what we learned is that Federer was mentally the weakest among atgs and also a rhythm based played player who did not have much answer for Nadal until he shifted his racquet and adopted a more aggressive approach .

So saying Fed failed and so Sampras would have no chance vs Nadal is really wrong. I think Sampras will have much better chance vs Nadal than Roger did because Sampras is aggresive while Federer was not. Surely net charging won't work now like it did 30 years back, those era players have to be better from the baseline which I am sure they will be with better racquets, good thing is they were not as submissive like Roger was to lose and again for years and do nothing about it.....
 
Fed tried SNV against Nadal on all surfaces including clay and it didn't turn out very favorable to Fed. Sorry to say but modern rackets have killed SNV and these players trying SNV in modern baseline era will be a toast.
Brown beat him with SnV and he is not remotely on the level of Sampras or Rafter. Nadal needs rhythm and a couple of long rallies to get into the groove and play his deadly passing shots. Against a guy who attacks the net relentlessly I can see him getting trouble, of course he would/could make certain adjustments. It of course also depends on the surface.
 

NeutralFan

G.O.A.T.
Over 2 decades what we learned is that Federer was mentally the weakest among atgs and also a rhythm based played player who did not have much answer for Nadal until he shifted his racquet and adopted a more aggressive approach .

So saying Fed failed and so Sampras would have no chance vs Nadal is really wrong. I think Sampras will have much better chance vs Nadal than Roger did because Sampras is aggresive while Federer was not. Surely net charging won't work now like it did 30 years back, those era players have to be better from the baseline which I am sure they will be with better racquets, good thing is they were not as submissive like Roger was to lose and again for years and do nothing about it.....

Fed didn't fail because he couldn't volley or Volley became old fashioned. Fed could go toe to toe against Nadal from baseline too and yet couldn't hurt him much , what chances does Pete have against Nadal by rushing to the net on every point against the best passer in the world with modern racket suited to his game? You ain't beating Nadal unless you're strong off both wings period.
 

NeutralFan

G.O.A.T.
Brown beat him with SnV and he is not remotely on the level of Sampras or Rafter. Nadal needs rhythm and a couple of long rallies to get into the groove and play his deadly passing shots. Against a guy who attacks the net relentlessly I can see him getting trouble, of course he would/could make certain adjustments. It of course also depends on the surface.

Yeah let's bring the worse phase of Nadal on grass in early rounds to ascertain your theory. Why do you think SnV became obsolete? Because players were bored ?
 

Martin J

Hall of Fame
SNV went out of fashion because it didn't work.why do you think vollies worked before poly and modern equipments? without poly passing shots and accuracy of baseline play was much lower. I am sorry to say but these SnV players from past would be lucky to be top 20 players in 2008-2014 let alone beating big 3. Fed wasn't miles off the names you suggested,only difference is Fed's rivals were best baseliners and passers in the world with modern racket at disposal. Fed would look impressive had he played Nadal or Djokovic without poly. On top of that they didn't have baseline game anywhere close to Fed and mere volley strategy would settle Nadal and Djokovic who would be happy to pass all day.
Why the S&V lost its popularity is a different question and a digression from the original point that Mustard made - how could Sampras (and I added Rafter and Edberg) challenge Nadal at RG or on clay, so let's stay on topic.

To me, it's a basic logic that Nadal struggles with big servers who are competent volleyers and who are not shy of approaching the net often. A solid sample size of the losses he's suffered against such opponents is a good starting point for this assumption, he has a losing record at Wimbledon against Muller (out of three matches, so it's wasn't an accidental loss), was two points away from defeat vs Kendrick, lost to Waske and Brown in Halle, Lopez and Mahut at Queen's club. I would give him the benefit of the doubt for the Brown match at Wimbledon as he was horrible that year, but there is always a pattern of him struggling to return big serves while standing on the baseline (clearly visible in the Rosol/Brown matches), and that's a problem.

Now all this happened on a fast(er) surface, and clay neutralizes big serves to a huge extent, but I still believe these players could make him feel uncomfortable with their game if he chooses to wait their serves from his customary 4-5-meters-behind-the-baseline position. He's never been tested against the relentless net rushers of their calibre and I'm pretty sure he would need to adjust, so that's what I would love to see.

I also disagree that Fed is in the league (or close to it) of Edberg/Pete when it comes to S&V, they are better volleyers with a much smarter approaching shots and the decisions of when to approach, close the net better, having the serves designed to support their net-rushing style, and most importantly, full of confidence in their decision to rush the net, while Fed gets discouraged as soon as his (net) game isn't clicking. Whether he had a potential to become a great S&V player is a different story and isn't helping this discussion.
 
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weakera

Talk Tennis Guru
Karlovic beat 2015 Djokovic, but Sampras would get destroyed by Djokovic.

How can this be reconciled?
 

fedfan24

Hall of Fame
Prime Pete with modern rackets + modern training for his BH would annihilate the nextgen on any hc or grass court. Look what ancient fed did to medvedev in 2019... now imagine a stronger quicker prime version of that with a faster serve.
 

nolefam_2024

Talk Tennis Guru
Why the S&V lost its popularity is a different question and a digression from the original point that Mustard made - how could Sampras (and I added Rafter and Edberg) challenge Nadal at RG or on clay, so let's stay on topic.

To me, it's a basic logic that Nadal struggles with big servers who are competent volleyers and who are not shy of approaching the net often. A solid sample size of the losses he's suffered against such opponents is a good starting point for this assumption, he has a losing record at Wimbledon against Muller (out of three matches, so it's wasn't an accidental loss), was two points away from defeat vs Kendrick, lost to Waske and Brown in Halle, Lopez and Mahut at Queen's club. I would give him the benefit of the doubt for the Brown match at Wimbledon as he was horrible that year, but there is always a pattern of him struggling to return big serves while standing on the baseline (clearly visible in the Rosol/Brown matches), and that's a problem.

Now all this happened on a fast(er) surface, and clay neutralizes big serves to a huge extent, but I still believe these players could make him feel uncomfortable with their game if he chooses to wait their serves from his customary 4-5-meters-behind-the-baseline position. He's never been tested against the relentless net rushers of their calibre and I'm pretty sure he would need to adjust, so that's what I would love to see.

I also disagree that Fed is in the league (or close to it) of Edberg/Pete when it comes to S&V, they are better volleyers with a much smarter approaching shots and the decisions of when to approach, close the net better, having the serves designed to support their net-rushing style, and most importantly, full of confidence in their decision to rush the net, while Fed gets discouraged as soon as his (net) game isn't clicking. Whether he had a potential to become a great S&V player is a different story and isn't helping this discussion.
Rubbish bs

Sampras couldn't beat his own generation players to even reach a French final. He is not troubling Nadal on clay. You know NOTHING about fed being in league or out of league of these guys.
 
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thrust

Legend
Nadal vs. Isner at the 2011 French Open shows how Sampras could challenge. Isner won 2 sets with big serving and winning two tiebreaks. If Nadal imposes his style a lot more, then it's much more difficult for any opponent. Sampras would be aiming to keep points shorter, and use his serve as much as possible. Nadal would be looking for grinding rallies and to make Sampras move around a lot. Clay obviously favours Nadal's style massively.
Also, the fact IS that Sampras was a much superior player than Isner.
 

nolefam_2024

Talk Tennis Guru
Isner is 6'10 and has double hander backhand

Sampras is 6'1 with a weak single hand backhand

There is no comparison. Even though Isner is much weaker player than Sampras, he has ability to get to the high bouncing ball on backhand
 
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