Djokovic will still struggle during Toronto/Cincinnati

FreeBird

Legend
As I have written in the other thread, in this W, Djokovic played at a solid level but there are plenty of holes in his game which cant be exploited on grass. On HC, he will need more power and penetration in his shots. It will take some time to be improve physical strength and I guess at least the start of Toronto won't be enough to do it.

I expect him to be back to his physical best by USO though.

From what I have seen at W, Rafa is the heavy favorite. His BH is better than ever and we already know how lethal his FH is. He and many other players may bully Djokovic on HC if Djokovic doesn't improve.
 
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tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
Agree here. People have forgotten the loopy FH already . Also confidence was lacking and several mid court balls were there in the rallies which Rafa killed . His serve has been great but that alone is not going to cut it.

I normally don't give much chances for Rafa at the USO, but the way he is aggressive these days and an improved serve, he is the overwhelming favorite
 
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C

Chadillac

Guest
Cincinnati is the one tournament that has eluded Djok. Not sure he can play on fast courts
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
Rafa has never defended a HC title and suddenly he's the favorite at UO? Have to disagree with this. Djokovic and Federer are safer picks than him. Djokovic has never won Cincinnati so it wouldn't be anything new.
LOL, Federer hasn't won the US Open in the last 10 years and suddenly he is more favorite than Nadal, the defending champion and the best US Open player of the 2010s decade? Have to disagree with this.
 

tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
Rafa has never defended a HC title and suddenly he's the favorite at UO? Have to disagree with this. Djokovic and Federer are safer picks than him. Djokovic has never won Cincinnati so it wouldn't be anything new.
C'mon Defending a title has nothing to do with consideration . A player could win 5 USO over 10 years without defending

Rafa needs draws to align and if he avoids the big hitters the early rounds he can always fight the top 5 in the second week
 

FreeBird

Legend
Rafa has never defended a HC title and suddenly he's the favorite at UO? Have to disagree with this. Djokovic and Federer are safer picks than him. Djokovic has never won Cincinnati so it wouldn't be anything new.
When I say struggle, I mean that he will still have troubles against Journeymen. Reaching Cincy SF/final and losing to Nadal/Federer/Delpo will be a good result.

We should not go by the history but by the form. Not defending a HC title is some rule and has to continue. Winning 3 titles in last 7 years and the current form is enough to mark him as the favorite. I can also say that 'Federer has not won USO in 10 years and suddenly he's the favorite at USO?' But this won't be a good argument. Isn't it?
 

tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
LOL, Federer hasn't won the US Open in the last 10 years and suddenly he is more favorite than Nadal, the defending champion and the best US Open player of the 2010s decade? Have to disagree with this.
Federer can be favorite for Wimbledon next year but Dal is the huge favorite for this USO
 

MeatTornado

G.O.A.T.
I have to agree. He beat Rafa by the slimmest of margins on one of the faster courts on tour. And he looked completely gassed by the end of it.

Rafa's defense will be on better display if they meet again on that gritty hard court. Novak will need to do more than guide the ball with his backhand like he did in so many rallies. Rafa will be able to track down those DTL shots and keep extending the rally.
 

GabeT

G.O.A.T.
As I have written in other thread, in this W, Djokovic played at a solid level but there are plenty of holes in his game which cant be exploited on grass. On HC, he will need more power and penetration in his shots. It will take some time to be improve physical strength and I guess at least the start of Toronto won't be enough to do it.

I expect him to be back to his physical best by USO though.

From what I have seen at W, Rafa is the heavy favorite. His BH is better than ever and we already know how lethal his FH is. He and many other players will bully Djokovic on HC if Djokovic doesn't improve.
I wonder if winning Wimbledon will push him to train even more. Now that he knows he can return to the top levels, something which was in doubt for quite a while.
 

Smurph

Rookie
The hard court Masters are very tough to win as the draw is more stacked with higher ranked players than in a Grand slam. If you are lucky to face a qualifier early, it is unlikely that a player will face more than 1 qualifier in the draw (that's for you PCB!). Plus, later in the week, there aren't days off to recover from tough matches.

I think Novak has put on some muscle since earlier in the year. He is a threat throughout the hard court season.
 
All three of Nadal, Federer, and Djokovic probably have roughly a 20% chance at the US Open. Strong cases can be made against any of them, but they are less unlikely than anyone else. As for the MS1000s, Djokovic will likely do pretty well in Canada, but I'm not sure about Cincinnati.
 

FreeBird

Legend
I wonder if winning Wimbledon will push him to train even more. Now that he knows he can return to the top levels, something which was in doubt for quite a while.
Thats why I think he will be okay by USO. You cant have visible results of training hard in 20 days. I guess 50 days will be enough. Losing to Nadal in a close match would have been terrible to his psyche esp. after the Cecchinato loss.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
C'mon Defending a title has nothing to do with consideration . A player could win 5 USO over 10 years without defending

Rafa needs draws to align and if he avoids the big hitters the early rounds he can always fight the top 5 in the second week
Big hitters at the US Open? Look at Del Potro and Anderson how easily Nadal beated them last year. I think big hitters are more dangerous on grass than slower hard court. Not only for Rafa, but in general. Raonic and Anderson have defeated Federer at Wimbledon, Querrey has defeated Djokovic at Wimbledon, Müller has defeated Nadal at Wimbledon... that would never happen at the US Open.
 

tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
Big hitters at the US Open? Look at Del Potro and Anderson how easily Nadal beated them last year. I think big hitters are more dangerous on grass than slower hard court. Not only for Rafa, but in general. Raonic and Anderson have defeated Federer at Wimbledon, Querrey has defeated Djokovic at Wimbledon, Müller has defeated Nadal at Wimbledon... that would never happen at the US Open.
Rafa got thrashed by Delpo in 2009. Last year Delpo was gassed in the SF

Rafa got beat by Pouille the previous year

What I am saying is Rafa's chances go up if his draw comprises of clay court specialists or Kohlscreiber / Busta / Agut kind of players.

If he gets players who swing for the fences like Khachanovs, Pouille or for that matter a steady player like Coric, they can give Nadal trouble
 

West Coast Ace

G.O.A.T.
Big hitters at the US Open? Look at Del Potro and Anderson how easily Nadal beated them last year. I think big hitters are more dangerous on grass than slower hard court. Not only for Rafa, but in general. Raonic and Anderson have defeated Federer at Wimbledon, Querrey has defeated Djokovic at Wimbledon, Müller has defeated Nadal at Wimbledon... that would never happen at the US Open.
That’s a bit of an unfair comparison - Delpo’s wrist didn’t allow him to hit a real BH; Nadal hit 90% of his shots st it (Federer, being stubborn, didn’t and went home). Anderson in his 1st major final - easy pickings.

Fognini and Pouille have beaten Nadal at the USO....
 

uscwang

Hall of Fame
As I have written in other thread, in this W, Djokovic played at a solid level but there are plenty of holes in his game which cant be exploited on grass. On HC, he will need more power and penetration in his shots. It will take some time to be improve physical strength and I guess at least the start of Toronto won't be enough to do it.

I expect him to be back to his physical best by USO though.

From what I have seen at W, Rafa is the heavy favorite. His BH is better than ever and we already know how lethal his FH is. He and many other players will bully Djokovic on HC if Djokovic doesn't improve.
"Will" is too strong a word. I doubt anyone can "bully" this Novak on HC. It is more likely that no one wants to face him.
His stamina is good, his wife is in the player's box, he is winning sets he should have lost, his confidence is high, this is just like good old days.
Yes, there is still room for him to improve. But, isn't that scary for the rest of the field?
 

FreeBird

Legend
"Will" is too strong a word. I doubt anyone can "bully" this Novak on HC. It is more likely that no one wants to face him.
His stamina is good, his wife is in the player's box, he is winning sets he should have lost, his confidence is high, this is just like good old days.
Yes, there is still room for him to improve. But, isn't that scary for the rest of the field?
Wrong choice of words from me. 'May' would be the correct one in this context.
Thats what I am excited about. This Novak was not even at his best this W and is still improving. But given his streaky nature in past 2 years or so, I am still wondering what to expect.
 

True Fanerer

G.O.A.T.
LOL, Federer hasn't won the US Open in the last 10 years and suddenly he is more favorite than Nadal, the defending champion and the best US Open player of the 2010s decade? Have to disagree with this.
Do you have to be reminded of his cakewalk draws or losing to Fognini there LOL. 3rd and 4th round exits were his results the two years before his most famous cakewalk last year.
C'mon Defending a title has nothing to do with consideration . A player could win 5 USO over 10 years without defending

Rafa needs draws to align and if he avoids the big hitters the early rounds he can always fight the top 5 in the second week
It's true that a player can do that 5 times in ten years yeah. He's failed to defend every single title he ever got anywhere ever on HC. Not just the UO.
 

vex

Hall of Fame
As I have written in the other thread, in this W, Djokovic played at a solid level but there are plenty of holes in his game which cant be exploited on grass. On HC, he will need more power and penetration in his shots. It will take some time to be improve physical strength and I guess at least the start of Toronto won't be enough to do it.

I expect him to be back to his physical best by USO though.

From what I have seen at W, Rafa is the heavy favorite. His BH is better than ever and we already know how lethal his FH is. He and many other players may bully Djokovic on HC if Djokovic doesn't improve.
I hope he doesn't even play Toronto.

USO is the only thing that matters.
 

pikku05

Rookie
Yup, that wimby win against Rafa was like a fluke for Novak. He looked dead tired in the fifth set and yet ended up winning the match. HC requires much more energy and don't think he is completely fit yet. Still looks bit underweight to my eyes
 
As I have written in the other thread, in this W, Djokovic played at a solid level but there are plenty of holes in his game which cant be exploited on grass. On HC, he will need more power and penetration in his shots. It will take some time to be improve physical strength and I guess at least the start of Toronto won't be enough to do it.

I expect him to be back to his physical best by USO though.

From what I have seen at W, Rafa is the heavy favorite. His BH is better than ever and we already know how lethal his FH is. He and many other players may bully Djokovic on HC if Djokovic doesn't improve.
Captain, you predicted that a player, who barely returned to top form will not be able to hold it enough to crush everyone all the time, but he will return to the needed level to win another Major just in time for USO?

You really went on a limb out there.

:cool:
 

joekapa

Legend
Djokovic will win Cincy before he retires. He has been in countless finals. I hope he does it this year. I don't care about the USO, as much as I do Cincy, this year. Obviously I would like it if he is in top form for the USO, and has a great run........but I would like him to retire having all the masters under his belt. That would be a MAJOR feat.
 

Plamen1234

Hall of Fame
Djokovic have big chance for Cincy title this year.Federer is probably going to play Toronto which means he could skip Cincy.Without Federer in Cincy Novak can win the title.
 

weakera

G.O.A.T.
The whole "Rafa hasn't defended a hard court title" argument is so incredibly circumstantial, context-irrelevant and stupid. I roll my eyes whenever I see it. Did Rafa's record at RG matter in 2015 when he was at his worst? Did Novak's AO history matter when he lost to Chung?

Rafa's level is super high and should improve from grass to hardcourt, that's why he's the favorite.
 

weakera

G.O.A.T.
Rafa got thrashed by Delpo in 2009. Last year Delpo was gassed in the SF

Rafa got beat by Pouille the previous year

What I am saying is Rafa's chances go up if his draw comprises of clay court specialists or Kohlscreiber / Busta / Agut kind of players.

If he gets players who swing for the fences like Khachanovs, Pouille or for that matter a steady player like Coric, they can give Nadal trouble
Yeah Coric will give Rafa plenty of trouble :confused::confused::confused::p:p:p
 

Mark jd

Rookie
The whole "Rafa hasn't defended a hard court title" argument is so incredibly circumstantial, context-irrelevant and stupid. I roll my eyes whenever I see it. Did Rafa's record at RG matter in 2015 when he was at his worst? Did Novak's AO history matter when he lost to Chung?

Rafa's level is super high and should improve from grass to hardcourt, that's why he's the favorite.
That's if he can mentally get over the loss in Wimbledon. I have a feeling it will not be easy for him.
 

weakera

G.O.A.T.
That's if he can mentally get over the loss in Wimbledon. I have a feeling it will not be easy for him.
Historically, Rafa has rebounded quickly and gone on to win slams soon after his worst career losses (AO17, RG09, AO12, AO14, WIM13). So that argument is just stupid. If anything Rafa has trouble maintaining a truly dominant level at slams and rebounding from tough losses is what he is best at.
 

Mark jd

Rookie
Historically, Rafa has rebounded quickly and gone on to win slams soon after his worst career losses (AO17, RG09, AO12, AO14, WIM13). So that argument is just stupid. If anything Rafa has trouble maintaining a truly dominant level at slams and rebounding from tough losses is what he is best at.
He lost two close matches against Djokovic in IW and Miami 2011 and was mentally done against him for the rest of 2011. (even though one would expect that if it was so close on Djokovic's best surface then on clay Nadal should win against him, but it doesn't work that way). He is yet to win a set against Federer after AO 2017 final, and I'm sure mentality has a lot to do with that. So yes, I think I have a point here. He might lose confidence again in the matchup against Djokovic now. Especially given the fact that the next slam is USO, not RG.
 

Jimbud

Semi-Pro
As I have written in the other thread, in this W, Djokovic played at a solid level but there are plenty of holes in his game which cant be exploited on grass. On HC, he will need more power and penetration in his shots. It will take some time to be improve physical strength and I guess at least the start of Toronto won't be enough to do it.

I expect him to be back to his physical best by USO though.

From what I have seen at W, Rafa is the heavy favorite. His BH is better than ever and we already know how lethal his FH is. He and many other players may bully Djokovic on HC if Djokovic doesn't improve.
Good points. But a HUGE part of Rafa’s strategy against Nole at Wimbledon was the dropshot. I’d say he had between 5 and 10 winners, seemingly all on important points. I’m a huge Novak fan, but I have to admit Rafa’s dropshots were the best disguised and executed I’ve ever seen. And I don’t think he missed a single one. He won’t be able to explain that as much on grass. And the only other observation — this year, Wimbledon grass played a bit closer to hardcourt than usual so the transition won’t be as tough as usual.
 

weakera

G.O.A.T.
He lost two close matches against Djokovic in IW and Miami 2011 and was mentally done against him for the rest of 2011. (even though one would expect that if it was so close on Djokovic's best surface then on clay Nadal should win against him, but it doesn't work that way). He is yet to win a set against Federer after AO 2017 final, and I'm sure mentality has a lot to do with that. So yes, I think I have a point here. He might lose confidence again in the matchup against Djokovic now. Especially given the fact that the next slam is USO, not RG.
Those losses against Nole in 2011 had to do with Novak's level, not Rafa's confidence, and the same goes for his matchups with Roger.

Rafa played Novak to a standstill on INDOOR GRASS. God bless you if you think that that will damage his confidence moving forward. He won't get a half as many aces on slow HC.
 

Mark jd

Rookie
Those losses against Nole in 2011 had to do with Novak's level, not Rafa's confidence, and the same goes for his matchups with Roger.

Rafa played Novak to a standstill on INDOOR GRASS. God bless you if you think that that will damage his confidence moving forward. He won't get a half as many aces on slow HC.
I'm not questioning Djokovic's level in 2011, but I still think the mental part also played a big part there. Same goes with Federer in 2017. I just didn't see any confidence against Nadal in these matches. That's why I'm afraid he can lose it again. Yes, it was indoor grass and ideal conditions for Djokovic, but matchups don't work that way. Djokovic pushed Nadal to the limits in RG 2013 but Nadal beat him easier at the US Open, right?
 

weakera

G.O.A.T.
I'm not questioning Djokovic's level in 2011, but I still think the mental part also played a big part there. Same goes with Federer in 2017. I just didn't see any confidence against Nadal in these matches. That's why I'm afraid he can lose it again. Yes, it was indoor grass and ideal conditions for Djokovic, but matchups don't work that way. Djokovic pushed Nadal to the limits in RG 2013 but Nadal beat him easier at the US Open, right?
These are some extreme and convoluted mental gymnastics you're performing.

Clearly we disagree in regards to what the match means to Rafa's confidence and time will tell who is correct.
 

I Am Finnish

Talk Tennis Guru
Djokovic will win Cincy before he retires. He has been in countless finals. I hope he does it this year. I don't care about the USO, as much as I do Cincy, this year. Obviously I would like it if he is in top form for the USO, and has a great run........but I would like him to retire having all the masters under his belt. That would be a MAJOR feat.
Djokovic said he can only win cincinnatti if Fedr retires
2.30
 
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