For me, Fed has surpassed Jordan, Brady and Gretzky

metsman

G.O.A.T.
I avidly follow all four - NFL, NHL, NBA and tennis.

I couldn’t disagree with the assessment the best all around atheletes probably would be found in basketball. And I wouldn’t have an issue saying that the QB position in the NFL is probably the most pressure filled in all of sports.

But somehow, in spite of all that, Federer to me has become the most impressive athlete in my time.
I would say NHL goaltender might have more pressure than QB. Extremely hard to win if your goalie messes up, poor goaltending has sunk many an elite team. You still have your defense and running game to fall back on if your QB isn't up to par. And of course the pressure of an individual sport is another level up.
 

Mr Feeny

Hall of Fame
He did that for me with Aussie Title last year.

He has more records in his sport than any other athlete in theirs.
He's not as dominant in his sport as Jordan was in his, though.

Jordan has 6 fmvps. The next guy in line? 3.
Jordan has 10 scoring titles. Nobody else has more than 7.
Jordan is the alltime leader in PER and ws/48 in the regular season, playoffs,and finals.
Jordan is the highest scorer in the regular season, playoffs, and finals.
Jordan 3 peated as lead dog (hadn' been done since the 60s), retired, then came back to do it AGAIN, before retiring again after hitting the championship winning shot to clinch the 2nd 3peat.

His numbers were videogame numbers. He was in another stratosphere from his peers. I love Federer, but Federer isn't THAT MUCH ahead of Pete, Nadal, Laver, Djoko and co.
They're only a tier below.
 

Mr Feeny

Hall of Fame
@Tiki-Taka would argue that it's Messi and he might well have a claim. Like Maradona, he seems like a human video game. He's the best scorer and playmaker on the planet all rolled into one. I'm not even a fan, but this is one athlete who leaves your jaw dropping at times. He's stupidly good and once you start making your peers look like amateurs,that's a sign that you'e a really special player.
 

Bobby Jr

G.O.A.T.
But with that I’d say Michael Jordan is a superior athlete to Fed.
How can you say that when he competed in a vastly less skillful sport than tennis? What do you have to base the claim on? Basketball requires 1/50th of the technical athletic abilities of tennis even if it does require an insane level of other attributes which are greater than in tennis.
 

Bobby Jr

G.O.A.T.
Still a long way to go before he gets Taylor.
If you bring Taylor up in every conversation of these types then I'll have to keep bringing up these guys. Their record makes Taylor look average.

Eric Murray and Hamish Bond. Undefeated in any competition (even friendly) - in every heat, round, regatta, event they ever competed in across multiple Olympic cycles in one of the most physically demanding sports there is.
 
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Deleted member 742196

Guest
I would say NHL goaltender might have more pressure than QB. Extremely hard to win if your goalie messes up, poor goaltending has sunk many an elite team. You still have your defense and running game to fall back on if your QB isn't up to par. And of course the pressure of an individual sport is another level up.
Yip. Goalie or QB, I could agree with both. Maybe the format of NFL means slightly more pressure as it’s not a series, so the maxim of “on any given Sunday” holds a bit true. But yeah, I couldn’t argue with the opinion goalie, QB or tennis player is the most pressure filled position in sports.
 
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Deleted member 742196

Guest
How can you say that when he competed in a vastly less skillful sport than tennis? What do you have to base the claim on? Basketball requires 1/50th of the technical athletic abilities of tennis even if it does require an insane level of other attributes which are greater than in tennis.
Hey, I’m a tennis nut but even I think elite basketball is extremely technical. Maybe more so than tennis. What makes tennis special and even more demanding is each point is a contest. You can constantly chuck bricks in basketball and still eke out a win. And heck even if you lose the game, you still have a whole series to even things out. The price to pay in football and tennis means on game day you can’t have mistakes. Tennis is the most demanding of all in this respect.

To me basketball is more athletic than tennis but less demanding because of its format.
 

smoledman

G.O.A.T.
I like the comparison to Gretzky. The same lack of 'beastly' physique but incredible hand-eye coordination and intelligence. Another athlete I'd compare Roger to is Greg Maddux. Also he wasn't known for the best physique or fastest pitches but he was very dominant in his era and was known as the smartest pitcher in baseball.
 

Bobby Jr

G.O.A.T.
Hey, I’m a tennis nut but even I think elite basketball is extremely technical. Maybe more so than tennis.
Yeah, nah. It's not even close.

What makes tennis special and even more demanding is each point is a contest. You can constantly chuck bricks in basketball and still eke out a win. And heck even if you lose the game, you still have a whole series to even things out. The price to pay in football and tennis means on game day you can’t have mistakes. Tennis is the most demanding of all in this respect.

To me basketball is more athletic than tennis but less demanding because of its format.
This ^.
 

smoledman

G.O.A.T.
How can you say that when he competed in a vastly less skillful sport than tennis? What do you have to base the claim on? Basketball requires 1/50th of the technical athletic abilities of tennis even if it does require an insane level of other attributes which are greater than in tennis.
Even at 36, Fed pulled off an insane half volley yesterday that had everyone gasping. Michael Jordan still played at a high level to the age of 35(1998 NBA Finals). But then he retired and only resumed at age 38 for 3 years and was a shell of himself. But yeah I'd say they are VERY close. Also stable mates at Nike. MJ line is huge in USA, Roger worldwide outside of US. Remember Roger also sponsors high-end brands like Jura, Rolex, Mercedes-Benz, Moet En-Chandon.
 

Tiki-Taka

Hall of Fame
@Tiki-Taka would argue that it's Messi and he might well have a claim. Like Maradona, he seems like a human video game. He's the best scorer and playmaker on the planet all rolled into one. I'm not even a fan, but this is one athlete who leaves your jaw dropping at times. He's stupidly good and once you start making your peers look like amateurs,that's a sign that you'e a really special player.
I actually thought about bringing him up yesterday but decided not to. :p I wouldn't want to listed to his detractors but I avoided the topic mostly because it's Federer's moment and he deserves all the attention right now.
 

T1000

Legend
Please get serious "suspected PED". Bonds was on PED for many years at the end of his career. Don't dirty the conversation with this guy. Henry Aaron was a better baseball player than Barry Bonds.
Never failed a test and lmao at thinking Aaron is even in the same league as bonds. Aaron's teammates used peds so if you want to say bonds used then Aaron used too.
 

T1000

Legend
Can't give it to him because of roids. Williams had a similar stretch anyways despite skipping 3 years in the middle to go fight in a freakin World War. Granted talent pool was not as large then, but 42 year old Williams was still the best hitter in the league almost 15 years post integration so I really don't think it would have mattered. Bonds is still a top 5-10 player ever without roids though. In the modern era, I probably have him third behind Williams and Mays for position players, just ahead of Mantle.

If we're going by WAR, GOAT is Williams. 130 career WAR while basically missing FIVE years to go fight in WW2/Korea. Also, his WAR is the least variance prone because all of it came from hitting.

Ruth probably has an excellent case to be GOAT because of how good of a pitcher he was, but obviously that was probably the easiest era ever for offense, and it's just impossible to compare.
Are you talking about his 4 year stretch right after world war 2? The numbers aren't even close bonds was way better. If you're talking about 33-36 then bonds is still better. I just have a hard time giving the goat title to someone that played in a watered down era (not his fault). Bonds played against juiced up pitchers and a much larger/better talent pool. I guess we'll just agree to disagree. I also really don't care about ped usage since pretty much everyone was on at that point
 

Service Ace

Hall of Fame
Even at 36, Fed pulled off an insane half volley yesterday that had everyone gasping. Michael Jordan still played at a high level to the age of 35(1998 NBA Finals). But then he retired and only resumed at age 38 for 3 years and was a shell of himself. But yeah I'd say they are VERY close. Also stable mates at Nike. MJ line is huge in USA, Roger worldwide outside of US. Remember Roger also sponsors high-end brands like Jura, Rolex, Mercedes-Benz, Moet En-Chandon.
Don't kid yourself, MJ's brand is global, one of the largest in all the world and synonymous with Nike.
 

Bluefan75

Professional
Are you talking about his 4 year stretch right after world war 2? The numbers aren't even close bonds was way better. If you're talking about 33-36 then bonds is still better. I just have a hard time giving the goat title to someone that played in a watered down era (not his fault). Bonds played against juiced up pitchers and a much larger/better talent pool. I guess we'll just agree to disagree. I also really don't care about ped usage since pretty much everyone was on at that point
Thing is, Williams having those years means he is quite likely to have been #3 in home runs for us growing up. Aaron, Ruth, Williams is likely how that reads, which would change the view of Williams immensely I would say.

Plus Williams didn't come to the plate wearing 3 feet of armor on his right arm to allow him to dive over the plate.

(Bonds probably is better, but I think you are underrating Williams quite a bit here. The man's eyesight was so good he stood at home plate one time, looked out and said second base was off. They measured, and sure enough it was like an inch off. It was said umps didn't call strikes if Williams didn't swing, because if he didn't think it was a strike, it wasn't a strike. It's not cut and dry between him and Bonds frankly. It's much closer than that, even if it does tilt to Bonds.)
 

Bluefan75

Professional
Yeah you know his career was 1979-1999 which coincided with incredibly high scoring that only dropped dramatically in 1997 and continued until 05 and hasn't reached those levels since?

Lemieux was better offensively and Orr is the greatest skater. Bobby Hull lead the league in goal scoring 7 times while Ovechkin might equal that this year.

Federer is way ahead.
Then why didn't the other guys put up those numbers? He was winning scoring titles by 75 points. That's a dependable long term veteran's production even in that era, and he's just blown away other stars with it.

Here's an example of of why he was so good: Kevin Lowe tells a story about how Gretzky found the Islanders the toughest to play against. Makes sense, given 4 straight Cups plus a finals at the end of it? Nope, that's not it. It's because their pants were a very similar blue to the Oilers, and Gretzky couldn't calculate as quickly how many teammates vs opponents were nearby when he was making a play behind the net. The pants for heaven's sake!
 

Chaoster

New User
I put him 3rd behind Jordan and Usain Bolt.
Really? Usain Bolt?

Don't get me wrong, nothing against the guy and I'm sure he's trained very hard his whole life but..

Sprinting is a sport largely to do with genetics, Usain Bolt is physically gifted, you can't deny that. Also with sprinting, it's a one-man game, your opponents' moves don't affect you the way tennis does, which is more of a gladiator style sport

Federer isn't the most athletic on tour, not the tallest nor the strongest, he's far from his physical prime in fact, and to maintain such a record, is nothing Usain Bolt can ever dream of achieving
 

jmc3367

Rookie
I am not a Pats fan (Falcons) so I have no love lost for Brady but it's hard to make an argument against him being one of, if not the top guy in sports greatness. The guy plays a difficult sport in to his late 30's. I got to give him props. However on the world wide stage of sports I think Fed is King of all. oh and Brady thinks he can play till he is in his 40's he still could win a couple more championships.
 
For me, I don’t think it’s possible or fair to compare GOATs across sports.

Jordan/Lebron, Brady, Ali, Gretzky, Federer, Jack Nicklaus, Messi, etc. are all the best in their respective sports no doubt. I don’t think it’s possible to objectively compare them.
Messi is not the best in his sport.
 

tacou

G.O.A.T.
By that logic if they had 4 championships per year Jordan would have 24 titles. 24>20 Jordan wins.
What sort of logic are you using? I know MJ never lost a final but you can't assume he'd have the equivalent of 6 calendar slam seasons.

Or you could. Like I said, pretty pointless and impossible comparison.
 
Nobody knows or cares about Fed outside the tennis-playing and -viewing sphere.

I measure greatness by influence. Tennis will always be seen as a sport for the rich and privileged. Is this label unfair? Absolutely. But it's the same reason NCAA football and basketball players get special treatment and chicks at their games while tennis players are getting sloppy seconds and thirds (if that).
 

jussumman

Professional
What sort of logic are you using? I know MJ never lost a final but you can't assume he'd have the equivalent of 6 calendar slam seasons.

Or you could. Like I said, pretty pointless and impossible comparison.
Fed has 4 chances per year to win a title, whereas Jordan only 1, not really complicated. But anyway, it's complicated more in that it's a team vs individual sport comparison
 
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MathGeek

Hall of Fame
I'm more of a Fed fan than a fan of Brady and Jordan. But the more impressive thing about Brady and Jordan is how they rose to the top of a much larger talent pool working very hard. Would Fed have accomplished the same thing if there were comparable numbers of youths working as hard to excel in tennis as there are working to excel in football and basketball?

This dynamic is one reason I've tried to steer my own children toward disciplines with lower levels of competition - where a certain amount of laziness can be depended on among most of the competition in the field. Take shooting for example, because of the ammunition and range expenses, a teen who starts early can be competitive (and I'm talking top 5) in a given state (and possibly even nationally) with about an hour of shooting practice a week for several years. Instead of requiring thousands of hours of practice, success in shooting only takes thousands of rounds of practice ammunition - hundreds of hours of practice. Likewise, success in mountain biking, fencing, mini-golf and Ultimate frisbee requires much less practice time and skill than the big sports: football, basketball, baseball, hockey, etc.

The fruit in tennis is a bit higher to reach than shooting, mountain biking, fencing, etc., but it is also considerably lower than the most popular sports. After 3 years of practicing an average of 6 hours per week, my son is ranked in the top 25% of players in his age group. We estimate that it would take more than twice the practice time to put him in the top 10% (the scholarship zone), but we choose to focus on academics instead. But another year at his current level of practice might put him in the top 15%, still outside the athletic scholarship zone, but much higher than he would possibly be with similar effort in the more popular sports.

But compare all sports to academic pursuits like science and engineering, and the sports lose. In addition to making good use of the standard class time for academic subjects, I can turn most above average students into top 1% performers in science and engineering with about 200 hours a year extra. Why? Because the other 99% is not working very hard, and the fruit hangs pretty low.
 

tenisdecente

Hall of Fame
Nobody knows or cares about Fed outside the tennis-playing and -viewing sphere.

I measure greatness by influence. Tennis will always be seen as a sport for the rich and privileged. Is this label unfair? Absolutely. But it's the same reason NCAA football and basketball players get special treatment and chicks at their games while tennis players are getting sloppy seconds and thirds (if that).
By that same rule, very few people care about Brady or Gretzky outside NA. Heck, even basketball fights for popularity against tennis, and the NBA is one of the most sold leagues in the world.
 
My bad then. Was probably too much to put him in the same sentence as Malone in terms of playoff performances.

Although I stand by my original opinion that MJ has not seen the same level of competition Fed did.That 2 year period of him fking off and playing baseball will always be a dent in his resume considering how many people consider Hakeem as maybe the best peak of all time.
I consider Hakeem the greatest center of all time, apologies to Wilt and a few others, but that team couldn’t have handled the Bulls back then.

The reason Jordan is the Goat is bc in every title he won, he faced a true HOF, top 50 nba Star, not only in the finals (Magic, Drexler, Barkley, Payton, Malone/Stockton 2x) but on the way to the finals (Thomas/Dumars, Ewing, Shaw, etc), and was easily the most fierce, stubborn, unwilling to lose athlete I’ve ever seen. Anybody saying his era was weak has zero knowledge of basketball history.

His two year hiatus had nothing to do with competition but rather his loss of drive to play, partly due to his father’s murder.

I get made fun of regularly for how big of a FedFan I am, but Jordan is the greatest sportsman ever (I hate the term “athlete,” if that was the question we’d be talking about who can match Bo Jackson, to which the answer is clearly nobody).



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

DRII

G.O.A.T.
sorry, phants...

but theres no way the Goat of GOATS can be relatively dominated by his greatest rival.

now move on and find something else to crow about...
 

Bobby Jr

G.O.A.T.
I'm more of a Fed fan than a fan of Brady and Jordan. But the more impressive thing about Brady and Jordan is how they rose to the top of a much larger talent pool working very hard. Would Fed have accomplished the same thing if there were comparable numbers of youths working as hard to excel in tennis as there are working to excel in football and basketball?
Um, what? There are a ****ton more people who play tennis than American football. And, because it's a global sport there is a vastly more diverse knowledge pool of how to get ahead in tennis, how to train, how to nurture talent etc. Most fail of course but the talent pool per se is much, much larger.

Basketball is more global than American football but still a pretty minor sport in most ways except in TV coverage.
 

metsman

G.O.A.T.
Are you talking about his 4 year stretch right after world war 2? The numbers aren't even close bonds was way better. If you're talking about 33-36 then bonds is still better. I just have a hard time giving the goat title to someone that played in a watered down era (not his fault). Bonds played against juiced up pitchers and a much larger/better talent pool. I guess we'll just agree to disagree. I also really don't care about ped usage since pretty much everyone was on at that point
No, I'm talking about 1941, 1942, 1946, 1947 when he averaged more than 11 WAR per year despite missing 3 years in the middle to go fight. Give him those 3 years and you are looking at a 7 year stretch that's just absurd. Remember they didn't play 162 games in those days so he would have averaged closer to 12 if they did. I don't hold his era against him given that it wasn't the live ball era like Ruth and co. played in, and given that he was still basically the best hitter in the league in 1960 at age 42 which is almost 15 years after integration and at a time when Aaron, Mays, Mantle were at their peak and no one uses watered down era against those guys.

Williams lost 5-ish almost full seasons to war and probably lost more than that when you consider the impact it had on his body/training/conditioning because he had a lot of injury issues later in his career that stopped him from playing full seasons. Give him a normal career and I think he's regarded as the GOAT by some distance. All things considered, I think he's definitely the best pure hitter of all time, and a lot of people would agree. Bonus points for being an ace fighter pilot.

Bonds' era was still a bit tougher probably due to more players of color and more pitching diversity, but I'm not giving him a complete pass for steroids given that some of the other top players of his era (Junior, Thomas) likely weren't on the juice and neither were most of the top pitchers (Unit, Pedro, Maddux) besides Clemens. Also the impact juicing has on pitching is mostly for health, like Clemens and Pettite taking HGH to recover from injuries, I doubt it increases performance as much as it does for hitters, pitchers were getting killed in the steroid era on average. Like I said, in the modern era (post live ball) I still have Bonds third behind Mays and Williams, and he's definitely the best player I've seen (along with pedro, and unit, we'll see what Trout does).
 

metsman

G.O.A.T.
I'm more of a Fed fan than a fan of Brady and Jordan. But the more impressive thing about Brady and Jordan is how they rose to the top of a much larger talent pool working very hard. Would Fed have accomplished the same thing if there were comparable numbers of youths working as hard to excel in tennis as there are working to excel in football and basketball?

This dynamic is one reason I've tried to steer my own children toward disciplines with lower levels of competition - where a certain amount of laziness can be depended on among most of the competition in the field. Take shooting for example, because of the ammunition and range expenses, a teen who starts early can be competitive (and I'm talking top 5) in a given state (and possibly even nationally) with about an hour of shooting practice a week for several years. Instead of requiring thousands of hours of practice, success in shooting only takes thousands of rounds of practice ammunition - hundreds of hours of practice. Likewise, success in mountain biking, fencing, mini-golf and Ultimate frisbee requires much less practice time and skill than the big sports: football, basketball, baseball, hockey, etc.

The fruit in tennis is a bit higher to reach than shooting, mountain biking, fencing, etc., but it is also considerably lower than the most popular sports. After 3 years of practicing an average of 6 hours per week, my son is ranked in the top 25% of players in his age group. We estimate that it would take more than twice the practice time to put him in the top 10% (the scholarship zone), but we choose to focus on academics instead. But another year at his current level of practice might put him in the top 15%, still outside the athletic scholarship zone, but much higher than he would possibly be with similar effort in the more popular sports.

But compare all sports to academic pursuits like science and engineering, and the sports lose. In addition to making good use of the standard class time for academic subjects, I can turn most above average students into top 1% performers in science and engineering with about 200 hours a year extra. Why? Because the other 99% is not working very hard, and the fruit hangs pretty low.
First of all the elites in tennis play WAY more often than the elites in basketball. Jordan played Hakeem 0 times in the playoffs for example. So yes while the overall talent pool is probably deeper, the elites aren't forced to play as often as they are in, and since it is a team sport, you can get away with not playing the elites if their teams are crap unlike tennis so it evens out.

Also, in football most of the best athletes aren't even quaterbacks so I doubt the talent pool is any deeper.
 

Darrell

New User
To me, Federer is the greatest of all time, no matter what other sport superstars you compare him with. Granted, I have nothing but the upmost respect for what Jordan, Gretsky, and Brady have done in their respective sports.

Tennis, unlike other sports, is not a team sport. There are no timeouts when things get tough. There is no halftime. There are no substitutions when you get tired. There are no teammates to shoulder the blame when you lose. It's just you and your opponent. It's all up to you to figure out what to do when things aren't going well during a match.

Federer has beat all-comers in the tennis world. Yes, I am well aware that he has a head-to-head record of 15-23 and 22-23 against Rafa and Novak, respectively. However, that doesn't take away from his greatness. His longevity, in one of the most grueling sports, is unbelievable. Here he is at 36-years-old winning his 20th major. That is unreal to me! Tennis players were once considered done once they reached the age of 30, and that was in a time when tennis wasn't as physical as it is now. Federer will turn 37 this year and has a chance to be #1 in the world. That is almost unfathomable!

Sure, there is a slim chance that Rafa, who is only 4 majors behind, could catch Roger, maybe even surpass him. But for me, Roger will still be my GOAT.
 

Mustard

Talk Tennis Guru
Perhaps, but Roger Federer will never surpass Phil Taylor for dominance of his sport. Taylor doesn't have a losing record against anybody he has played against at least twice. He has 16 World Championships (first won in 1990, last won in 2013) and 16 World Matchplays (first won in 1995, last won in 2017), the biggest titles of loads and loads he's won. Taylor retired after the 2018 World Championship, where he lost the final (his 21st World Championship final). Taylor was out in Melbourne watching the Australian Open this year, out there playing darts exhibitions. It wouldn't surprise me if Federer has heard of him, at least.
 

Mustard

Talk Tennis Guru
Anyone ever see Connors or Mcenroe blubbering like idiots after winning? Sampras? Agassi? Just pathetic, the guy on a tennis court is a KING. Soon as he steps a few feet away, you see why he only gets Mirka to hug afterwards.
Agassi, yes. Plenty of tears after he won the 1992 Wimbledon final against Ivanisevic.
 

Mustard

Talk Tennis Guru
If you bring Taylor up in every conversation of these types then I'll have to keep bringing up these guys. Their record makes Taylor look average.
Do they play a professional sport? Phil Taylor has dominated professional darts, including when there's been millions to be won.
 

Newballs

Professional
I put him 3rd behind Jordan and Usain Bolt.
Can’t get behind Usain, he just runs, where’s the thought in that?
‘Oh my god I have to run faster than the other guy...’
Everyone in every sport (that involves running of any kind) MUST do this to win.
And then sticking or moving and thinking or something else whilst running!
It’s better than a golfer that’s for sure.
But that’s not near enough to be considered a great amongst greats in my humble opinion...
 
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