Bjorn Borg was the ultimate pusher! Prove me wrong.

Kralingen

Legend
Borg and Vilas barely take a breath after that, lol. Like nothing even happened in that point.

It says something about the intensity of the rally, sure, but it also says a lot about the fitness of both men, and also their mental focus.

if you don't fully focus on hitting groundstrokes perfectly with the utter pieces of crap these guys were using, the ball will go sideways. Especially with the spin they were putting on the ball.
 

Winners or Errors

Hall of Fame
Um, Borg was the one making aggressive moves in that point. Not sure what you’re watching. Hard to hit through anyone with a wood racquet on super slow RG clay of the 1970s.
 

Tshooter

G.O.A.T.
Borg and Vilas barely take a breath after that, lol. Like nothing even happened in that point.

It says something about the intensity of the rally, sure, but it also says a lot about the fitness of both men, and also their mental focus.

if you don't fully focus on hitting groundstrokes perfectly with the utter pieces of crap these guys were using, the ball will go sideways. Especially with the spin they were putting on the ball.
:laughing:

Not like today’s snowflakes with the medical timeouts. :rolleyes:
 

GameSetR

Rookie
I might also add, not only give peak Borg the benefit of modern racquet technology, also give him the benefit of the "natural supplements" (wink wink) that modern players take.
 

RVT

Rookie
I saw both Borg and McEnroe play on hard courts (Borg 2.0 after retirement). I was shocked that they both looked like pushers, particularly since Lendl and Agassi were there. It was like a different sport they were playing.

No question Borg would be great today, but not with that game.
 
I saw both Borg and McEnroe play on hard courts (Borg 2.0 after retirement). I was shocked that they both looked like pushers, particularly since Lendl and Agassi were there. It was like a different sport they were playing.

No question Borg would be great today, but not with that game.
Well, to be fair. Lendl was a transitional player between classic and modern game and pretty much the father of the modern game, and Agassi was the first player with a true modern game.
 
A glorified pusher like Andy Murray can be coined part of the "Big Four" in this era, yet Borg, who had 10x the talent of Murray, would have to change his game? The recency bias is strong on this forum.
You think 30mph groundstrokes that clear the net by 20 feet and still land inside the service line would work in this era?
 

RVT

Rookie
A glorified pusher like Andy Murray can be coined part of the "Big Four" in this era, yet Borg, who had 10x the talent of Murray, would have to change his game? The recency bias is strong on this forum.
I've seen both Murray and Borg in person, and there is zero comparison in how they hit the ball. None. If you believe they're the same, it's because you've only watched them on TV.

Again, no disrespect to Borg, Tilder or Laver... It's not "recency bias". The game is functionally different than what it was when guys played with and built their game around wood rackets. They'll all be great champions if they played now. And their games would be significantly different. Period.
 

Winners or Errors

Hall of Fame
I saw both Borg and McEnroe play on hard courts (Borg 2.0 after retirement). I was shocked that they both looked like pushers, particularly since Lendl and Agassi were there. It was like a different sport they were playing.

No question Borg would be great today, but not with that game.
Was this the same Borg who, around 40, was schooling top college players? I just think it's hard to understand the game some people play if you don't play it yourself.
 

GameSetR

Rookie
My problem is that it's always framed like, "The old man would have to adjust to today's game."

Ok, and what would happen if you put these "all I know is the baseline" new class in Borg's era? Dare I say, they might actually have to develop the footwork and net skills that Laver, Rosewall had. *gasp*
 
My problem is that it's always framed like, "The old man would have to adjust to today's game."

Ok, and what would happen if you put these "all I know is the baseline" new class in Borg's era? Dare I say, they might actually have to develop the footwork and net skills that Laver, Rosewall had. *gasp*
The thing is, these new guys are used to 90mph balls coming at them almost every shot. I'm sure it would not be that hard to develop a net game when the speed of the balls coming at them suddenly dropped to 40 or 50mph.
 

GameSetR

Rookie
The thing is, these new guys are used to 90mph balls coming at them almost every shot. I'm sure it would not be that hard to develop a net game when the speed of the balls coming at them suddenly dropped to 40 or 50mph.
All the greats are blessed with amazing hand-eye coordination. They would adjust. It would ONLY be an issue if Borg lacked stamina, but it's Borg... he was stamina. He would be fine.
 

Sunny014

Legend
Borg would not have as much stamina now as he had back then, now Tennis is much faster and thats why players get tired.
If you jog at 5 kmph then you wont get tired, but if you jog at 7.5 kmph then you will get tired, that is an example of more intensity getting you tired, today's game is much more power oriented and energy sapping
 
All the greats are blessed with amazing hand-eye coordination. They would adjust. It would ONLY be an issue if Borg lacked stamina, but it's Borg... he was stamina. He would be fine.
He attempted a comeback after only a couple of years being gone. The game changed dramatically during that time and he was not able adjust. He didn't win a single match. He even tried with a modern racquet. The greats are great in their time. Trying to predict how they would do in a completely different era is impossible, although we did see a bit of it with Borg, and it was not good.
 

Sunny014

Legend
He attempted a comeback after only a couple of years being gone. The game changed dramatically during that time and he was not able adjust. He didn't win a single match. He even tried with a modern racquet. The greats are great in their time. Trying to predict how they would do in a completely different era is impossible, although we did see a bit of it with Borg, and it was not good.
Except Federer no other ATG can adapt to various eras and various equipments.

Hand eye co-ordination par excellence !!!
 

jrepac

Hall of Fame
A lot of silly comments here.
First, Borg was hands down, one of the fittest people ever to play the game.
So, yes, I expect he would not be getting tired playing the 'modern' game.
There also seems to be a tendency here to equate hitting hard with the 'modern game'
If you are talking aggressive baseline play, rather than old school S&V, well that was Connors....then Borg, Lendl, Agassi, etc. All were incredibly solid from the back court and they upset the serve & volley dynamics that ruled when 3 of 4 GS events were on grass.
Borg was also able to adapt his game INCREDIBLY well to different surfaces. So watching him on clay is not the same as grass or hard courts. He could rally to death on clay with Vilas, cream Connors on grass and hold off hard charging McEnroe. Different surfaces, different playing styles.
So, I strongly suspect if you put in him in a time machine, so he showed up today at 22yrs old with a modern racquet, he would hold his own. However, I do suspect that the traditional S&V guys might struggle a bit, given surfaces are slower across the board.
 

CyBorg

Legend
He attempted a comeback after only a couple of years being gone. The game changed dramatically during that time and he was not able adjust. He didn't win a single match. He even tried with a modern racquet. The greats are great in their time. Trying to predict how they would do in a completely different era is impossible, although we did see a bit of it with Borg, and it was not good.
Why do you lie. Borg was retired 8 years. Didn't play a full schedule for about 10. Meanwhile the 80s was a decade of the greatest transformation the sport ever faced. And he's supposed to just go back to being elite?
 

GameSetR

Rookie
A lot of silly comments here.
First, Borg was hands down, one of the fittest people ever to play the game.
So, yes, I expect he would not be getting tired playing the 'modern' game.
There also seems to be a tendency here to equate hitting hard with the 'modern game'
If you are talking aggressive baseline play, rather than old school S&V, well that was Connors....then Borg, Lendl, Agassi, etc. All were incredibly solid from the back court and they upset the serve & volley dynamics that ruled when 3 of 4 GS events were on grass.
Borg was also able to adapt his game INCREDIBLY well to different surfaces. So watching him on clay is not the same as grass or hard courts. He could rally to death on clay with Vilas, cream Connors on grass and hold off hard charging McEnroe. Different surfaces, different playing styles.
So, I strongly suspect if you put in him in a time machine, so he showed up today at 22yrs old with a modern racquet, he would hold his own. However, I do suspect that the traditional S&V guys might struggle a bit, given surfaces are slower across the board.
Thank you! A voice of reason.

Borg, Connors, and Lendl would do great today.

It's Johnny Mac and Edberg who would have to adjust, purely given the surface slow down. But even Mac and Edberg would do well, simply because these kids aren't used to playing against a competent S&V player.
 

BlueB

Legend
What part of me saying "peak" Borg did you miss?
I actually missed all parts of "peak" :)
Still doubted... He couldn't even win a single match with the new racquet. It's not that he faced the giants of the game in those first rounds.
 

jrepac

Hall of Fame
What's the real reason?
The "real" reason has been debated endlessly. And, I'm not sure if Borg's ever really made it clear why. At the time, it was viewed as a 'break'. Perhaps a small "tantrum" that he would recover from in short order. He only wanted to play the bigger events, but the rulers of the game were making it next to impossible for him. Maybe he was a little mentally tired, we won't ever know. But the guy had achieved so much and an incredible level of fame and fortune. This is despite his USO shortfall, which I think bothered others more than it ever bothered him as he gave due credit to his opponents.

More on the 'fame' part: It's really very hard to convey what tennis was like in the late 70's/early 80's compared to what it is today. It had taken off in the US like a rocket ship, never to be seen again. TV coverage, million dollar exos, rabid fans...groupies in Borg's case. I think Borg hit the very pinnacle of tennis fame. I think that fan energy later transferred to Germany with Boris and Steffi, but the gas was slowly starting to escape the balloon, generally speaking. Perhaps the 2 weeks of Connors' insane '91 run at the USO hit those levels, but obviously, that was once and done. We have tremendously talented players in the game today, no question. Yet, at the same time, I find it all a bit sterile.
 

CyBorg

Legend
Those of you who want to see a guy really hit hard and flat on red clay, watch Connors at Roland Garros in these years. Or Jose Luis Clerc.

But in spite of some success, they never won the big prize. But these guys (Borg, Vilas) did. In spite of Borg's (apparently not very sexy, to some people) style of big looping strokes, he dominated everyone (note: I should add that I find his style to be very aesthetically pleasing and so do many people).

The looping strokes with the heavy topspin worked. They won matches. Because you could get on that court, with the slow clay, with the little wooden racquet at hand. You can hit as hard and flat as you can, go for big winners and you won't get far. Because guys like Borg will use your pace against you and pass you over and over again.

Some people actually think that no one in that time tried doing that. And if only they had the wisdom of "Miami Weekend Warrior" it would have been lights out for Borg. Give your heads a shake.
 

mxmx

Hall of Fame
Thank you! A voice of reason.

Borg, Connors, and Lendl would do great today.

It's Johnny Mac and Edberg who would have to adjust, purely given the surface slow down. But even Mac and Edberg would do well, simply because these kids aren't used to playing against a competent S&V player.
Prime Mac would beat anyone.
 

Olli Jokinen

Semi-Pro
He attempted a comeback after only a couple of years being gone. The game changed dramatically during that time and he was not able adjust. He didn't win a single match. He even tried with a modern racquet. The greats are great in their time. Trying to predict how they would do in a completely different era is impossible, although we did see a bit of it with Borg, and it was not good.
He was 36 and had not played professionally for ages. Impressive that he was actually able to hang with these guys.
 

bobcolbert

New User
Why did Vilas perform so poorly at Wimbledon?
Because he needed to train a lot to play well on grass. In Australia he arrived 5 or 6 weeks before the start of the tournament and played 7 or 8 hours by day. There is very little time between Roland-Garros and Wimbledon ... He couldn't be ready, and often lost against players less good than those he beat in Melbourne. He had a real chance to win in 1975, when he lost in QF in five sets againts Tanner.
 

Ace of Aces

Semi-Pro
Clay court tennis benefited more aesthetically from the new strings than the faster courts. A moonball fest is not good tv.
 
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