Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by The Gorilla, Jul 14, 2007.
he actually starts crying at one stage
great interview and speech from pete. such a class guy. thanx for posting.
I was actually there today. Pete had a really tough time handling himself and it made for a very emotional speech.
Gosh, you can see how much it really means to the guy. His life is really all about tennis, 100% total dedication.
iS HE coming back to the tour?
That was a great interview. I like how Sampras remembered how he won all his majors and masters events like it was yesterday.
thanks for posting...i didnt know where it was on tv so thanks for providing us the chance to see this
Pete left it all on the court and he always gave so much of himself to his game. His emotions are so raw while recalling his career. He was a blessing to tennis and will be missed(as an active player).
what a guy! such a class act!
About time...Sampras gets what he deserves
Great interview ... thanks for the link
His interview shows how much he isn't caught up with his major wins, he's not constantly thinking about his legacy and what he did in this year and that. Why? Note, at around 2:30 in the clip they point towards the aussie trophy, Pete says, is that the 92 one? Oh, no thats 97, yeah that was tough etc....I was really at my peak won around 3 in a row - Us fans know that he lost to Krajicek in 96...
He won 3 in a row from 93-94.
Also, the 92 AO one? He won his other AO in 94 :grin: So perhaps contrary to common belief, he doesn't obsess about his own career as much as most think, he doesn't know the details as well as us fans.
they also were asking him about his davis cup match vs russia when he cramped. i think they said 1992 but it was actually 1995. pete didn't say anything to correct him.
his emotional end really shows that he's glad hard work pays off.
He is a class guy. Truly one of the greats.
hehe, yah i noticed that. I was like, wow that's sad that i obsess more about his majors than he does.
Thank you Pete Sampras .... a 1st class champion on & off the courts.
I posted the video on my blog too. Seeing his respect for the game, the humility he has, only adds to his legend.
Yeah, I'm amazed at how poor his memory is concerning his career. He's certainly no Agassi or Mac, they seem to remember every match they played & details about each match.
Sampras has always been that way, when he was on tour he often didn't remember if he played someone before(or when or where he did if he did remember) Fitting, considering his playing style was that of a 'short term memory' player(was able to forget bad errors more quickly during a match better than anyone I've seen)
In an interview in Tennis Magazine a few years ago, he said his best match ever was vs Agassi in the '00 W Final, when they actually played in the '99 Final.
And when he won his last slam, Brigitte & him did an interview for CNN, they asked her "what's the only slam Pete hasn't won?" She didn't know. I'm not sure she could have named all 4 majors had they asked, that's how little I assume Pete talks tennis off the court. All these stories & the fact that Sampras didn't pick up a tennis racquet for years after retiring, nor did any interviews for years or accept any commentary gigs, shows that he could care less about his legacy(& maybe never cared that much, considering how poor his recollection is), he's moved on. I'm amazed by the many posts on this board that claim he can't let go of the past, when even his wife doesn't know some pretty basic facts about his career. I'd bet anything he has no idea how many total titles he has or how many masters series he has or how many weeks he was #1, since apparently he can't even remember what year he won what slam. And every interview he's done for the last 2 years, he says that Fed will win 17-18 majors & 8-9 Wimbledons. Yeah, he seems like a really self-involved guy.
He's no McEnroe or Becker, that's for sure. Pretty much any great player that is a current commentator is partly doing it out of ego, in a way they get to still be in the spotlight(Mac gets to remind all the younger viewers who never saw him play how great he was etc)
Sampras really seems similar to Lendl in many ways, really low-key. Appropriate that Lendl mentored him a little bit very early in his career.
I noticed Evert also has a pretty bad memory concerning her career(while Martina N remembers everything, go figure)
As far as the HOF goes, its a shame that Pete didn't thank Pete Fischer, the coach that was most instrumental in his development. But they have been on shaky terms for many years now.
Donald Dell's comments about Sampras's game and the way he carried himself were spot on.
I also couldn't help but notice that Barry McKay choked up with Pete at the end of their interview. Unpretentious. Very real, very genuine.
The consistency of Pete's character all the way through to his induction to the Hall is what I will remember most about him.
"I am a tennis player. Nothing more, nothing less."
That's how to be a champion...Guy is up there with Barry Sanders in terms of being a class act...
That might be why the emotion hit him so suddenly. He was so casual talking about his career, then he gets to the end of it, and suddenly it hits him. He's not a professional tennis player any more.
He definitely has some regret for retiring while he still had some game left in him, that's why he still talks about Wimbledon so much. I don't get the impression that he was taking tennis very seriously during his final years on tour. Not picking up a racquet for years just speaks to how sick of it he was.
This is why I think that at his best, he was better than Federer. If he knew a guy like Federer would be following him, I think he would have won a couple more Slams, and certainly a lot more tournaments. I was surprised to hear Agassi say that Federer was better, because no one put the beatdown on Agassi like Sampras.
Does anyone know if Sampras' actual speech at the Hall of Fame induction ceremony is on video anywhere on the web? I really want to see that. I heard he had to stop like 14 times due to his emotions getting the best of him.
One for each slam, eh?
Agreed I would love to see this, I haven't been able to find it either
Superb! I love it.
Yeah, I guess every time he recalled winning a Slam and holding up the champion's trophy, he broke down, a la Federer.
As I recall, Barry McKay(one of the commentator) was the guy
who gave young Sampras wild cards to his tournaments
when he debuted.
It must be emotional to walk thru the hall with a guy who
helped him when he started out the whole thing.
Great point. McKay's been around--I'm sure it was touching for him too.
Just read a column on Sampras by Steve Flink
an interesting excerpt:
As he accepted his great honor at the Hall of Fame, I thought of how he changed without ever surrendering his integrity. After he first made it to No. 1 in the world in 1993, we spoke for some time about his temperament and mindset, about how perhaps the public misunderstood him. Sampras said then, "The knock on me the last couple of years is if I am not playing well and I have got my head down, they think I am tanking whereas when I am hitting great shots and playing unbelievable tennis, I can look like a genius. I remember Arthur Ashe comparing himself to Jimmy Connors, saying he wished he had the intensity and willpower that Connors had, but he just did not. And Ashe said he was not going to change then and he probably never would change in that respect.
"I see myself much more like Arthur than Connors. I wish I had the killer instinct and obviously I want to win, but Connors really wanted to win. He hated to lose. I hate to lose, too, and wish I was a little more like Connors, but I am not, and I am not going to try to be."
In retrospect, that is a fascinating comment because Sampras, without compromising even a trace of his hard earned reputation as a sportsman, would eventually be reminiscent of Connors without letting go of the Ashe influence. Sampras became in his quiet way every bit as tough and resilient a competitor as Connors ever was, without resorting to vulgarity and crudeness as was often the case with Connors. His mental toughness was as big a weapon as his exquisite serve, which I believe is the best delivery the game has ever seen.
But Sampras, like Ashe, kept a wide range of emotions bottled up inside of him. In 1998, when he was in the latter stages of a long quest to secure the No. 1 world ranking for a record sixth straight year, Sampras played Jason Stoltenberg in Stockholm. He was playing his sixth consecutive indoor event, an endeavor which left him thoroughly debilitated. After losing an opening set tie-break, Sampras stepped totally out of character. As he told me, "I threw my racket down on the court and broke it in about a million pieces. I was so stressed out from the whole race for No. 1 and I wasn't eating or sleeping well. I was on the edge. I had never done anything like that in my career before and would not do it after, but I just snapped for a moment. It felt pretty good. I will never forget the looks on the faces of those fans."
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