Greatest 2 year run in Men's tennis history?

Coria

Banned
I'd have to say it is. What he's done is mind boggling. Has there ever been a player who's been this dominant over a two year period?

He's won four majors, about 11 Masters' series events, and 21 titles since Munich in April of '03. He's been in two other finals and five or six semis. Since the U.S. Open, he's 48-1.

Sampras, Borg, Connors, Mac, Lendl? I just can't imagine how any of them has equaled over two years what this guy has done--against a better field no less.
 

BigboyDan

Semi-Pro
Coria said:
I just can't imagine how any of them has equaled over two years what this guy has done--against a better field no less.
Uh-huh.


Rankings

1985:

1. Ivan Lendl
2. John McEnroe
3. Mats Wilander
4. Jimmy Connors
5. Stefan Edberg
6. Boris Becker
7. Yannick Noah
8. Anders Jarryd
9. Miloslav Mecir
10. Kevin Curren

2005

1. R. Federer
2. L. Hewitt
3. M. Safin
4. A. Roddick
5. I. Ljubicic
6. R. Nadal
7. J. Johansson
8. A. Agassi
9. N. Davydenko
10. G. Gaudio
 

Coria

Banned
Uh-uh--and the 2005 group is better than the 1985 group. You can't just look at the top 10 anyway. It's a different ranking system now. There are some great players still in the top 25-30 that are currently not ranked in the top 10.

Federer has a BETTER all around game than any of those players. Dude, I seriously suggest you get a tape of the 2004 US OPEN final where Federer beat Hewitt 6-0, 7-6, 6-0. And there are about 20 other matches you could get yourself a copy of and watch. You really are pathetically misinformed.
 
While that 85' top 10 list is impressive, I definitely think mens tennis today has much more depth than in 85'. Every year there is more prize money/endorsement money. So world wide more and more top atheletes, not just wealthy country clubbers, are getting into it. So even if they arent top 10 "talent-wise", they are supremely inshape and usually have at least one big weapon to use when "on" their game. Fed IS amazing. I remember when Pete was rapping up his career, I thought, man the game is getting so "big" that nobody will be able to consistently dominate like Pistol did anymore...just too many big hitters. Then along comes Fed and is now forcing ALL the players to step it up.
 
the greats all had pretty good runs over two year periods that probably equal rogers previous two years. borg, connors, sampras, and lendl.
 

HookEmJeff

Semi-Pro
No doubt about it. This is by far the most incredible run ever in tennis. This might be even more impressive than Graf's Golden Slam year in 1988. Just think, if Federer wins the remaining three Slams this year, he will have been ONE point from a calendar Grand Slam.
Regardless, his record in finals, against Top 10 players, take everything into account...it's just sick. The guy is probably the best and most fluid mover, the most talented ball striker and most thoughtful player around. Today he showed heart, fitness and the ability to win on a seriously off day.
I don't know what more the guy can show on a tennis court, honestly. He's a total freak, which is why we should all just take pause and realize we're watching something and someone who is about as good as it gets in what they do.

Jeff
 

AndrewD

Legend
You guys have got to be joking. Federer's accomplishments are outstanding but to say that no-one has ever done anything like it before is ludicrous. In days gone by the top pro didnt usually have two years to stack up the trophies. At the end of an outstanding year, when their asking price was highest, they turned pro. If you've any doubts, take a look at your own Tony Trabert who won everything bar the Aus Open one year (lost in the semis), won about 95% of his matches and then had to turn pro so he could put food on the table.

Also, the 1985 list is far stronger than the 2005 one. Even Mecir and Wilander, the most passive players, were attacking in their baseline games. In 2005 you've got (not counting Federer) Agassi, Safin, Roddick and Johansson who are attacking players capable of knocking you off the court or overwhelming you with their game. In 2005 the entire top 10 could do that, regardless of the surface. Also, of that 1985 list, 7 of 10 won a major singles and of the other 3, 2 won doubles titles at a major. In 2005, Federer, Agassi, Hewitt and possibly Roddick are the only ones worthy of joing the 1985 list (you could substitute them for numbers 7-10).

If the 2005 crop of players were better than the 1985 group then Hewitt would not be ranked as high as he is.
 

Rob_C

Hall of Fame
Mecir & Wilander attacking in their baseline games????? Both of those guys were huge pushers

Also, the 2005 list is the stupid ass Champions race, not the real rankings, the entry system. Nadal just broke into the top 20 with his final showing at Key Biscayne. The ATP should get rid of the Champions race once & for all. The only reason it came about is b/c of the 2 billion dollar deal with ISL or whoever, that went bankrupt a year later.
 

Kevin Patrick

Hall of Fame
Federer:
78-17, .821%, '03
74-6, .925%, '04
32-1, .970%, '05
Lendl:
84-7, .923%, '85
74-6, .925%, '86
74-7, .914%, '87
McEnroe:
82-3, .965%, '84
71-9, .888%, '85

Not sure about Borg & Connors, can't find reliable records due to the ATP/WCT split of the 70s.
 

andfor

Legend
Kevin Patrick said:
Federer:
78-17, .821%, '03
74-6, .925%, '04
32-1, .970%, '05
Lendl:
84-7, .923%, '85
74-6, .925%, '86
74-7, .914%, '87
McEnroe:
82-3, .965%, '84
71-9, .888%, '85

Not sure about Borg & Connors, can't find reliable records due to the ATP/WCT split of the 70s.
Hmmmm, looks like this discussion is over.
 

spirit

Rookie
Let's keep our perspective

Kevin Patrick said:
Federer:
78-17, .821%, '03
74-6, .925%, '04
32-1, .970%, '05
Lendl:
84-7, .923%, '85
74-6, .925%, '86
74-7, .914%, '87
McEnroe:
82-3, .965%, '84
71-9, .888%, '85

Not sure about Borg & Connors, can't find reliable records due to the ATP/WCT split of the 70s.
Good stats. Looks like Lendl's run was better and longer (so far) and McEnroe's run was close to as good and still could be better, depending on how the rest of the year goes for Federer, but he is on a roll. If he takes Roland Garros, then that might seal the agument that he was the greatest ever. (That would still leave McEnroe as the greatest doubles player ever)

To put things into perspective and to appreciate what it was like for a tennis great who turned pro before the Open Era, read this Bud Collins' obit of Richard Gonzalez (copied below).

Tireless and Fiery, Everyone Paid to See Pancho
By Bud Collins
Special to The Washington Post
July 5, 1995
July 5 LONDON, JULY 4 -- Wimbledon patrons, an orderly crowd, seldom hiss and boo, but they gave Pancho Gonzalez the vocal business that dank June evening 26 years ago. He was 41 years old, and the Old Wolf was starting to look it, silver highlights in the sumptuous jet mane, especially as he trudged sourly from Centre Court in a hailstorm of negative noise.
The problem was he had pouted and aimlessly pottered through the 6-1 second set against Charlie Pasarell, muttering that it was too dark to play. He had screamed that sentiment at the imperious referee, Capt. Mike Gibson, after losing the opening set, 24-22. "Play on, Mr. Gonzalez!" ordered Gibson from behind his Guardman's mustache. Pancho complied, half-heartedly, reaping consumer disapproval when the referee did close proceedings.
Gonzalez was two sets behind in the first round, and giving away 15 years to Pasarell, the No. 5 American. He fumed most of the night, playing cards with his wife until dawn while winding down. Hours later, back on Centre Court, Gonzalez was rejuvenated. Once again the ageless, peerless competitor, the predatory wolf, he created one of the game's masterpieces, and left the full-house gathering of 15,000 -- and Pasarell -- raving and gasping.
Crashing out of seven match points in the fifth set (twice from 0-40), Gonzalez turned the jeers of the previous dusk to hosannas as he beat Pasarell, 22-24, 1-6, 16-14, 6-3, 11-9.
Conversations turned to that dinger today as word that Gonzalez died of cancer Monday night at 67 in Las Vegas reached the Big W, the tournament he didn't win only because of the segregated condition of tennis during his best days. Then, traditional tournaments were limited to alleged amateurs. After winning the U.S. Open in 1949, Gonzalez sought his fortune with the outlaws, the out-and-out pros, and didn't make it back to Wimbledon for nearly two decades, until open competition dawned in 1968. He was 40, yet a factor, a quarterfinalist at the French and U.S. opens.
Ted Schroeder, loser of the 1949 Open final to Gonzalez, said, "You could never be too far ahead of Pancho. I led him by two sets in '49 so I know how Pasarell felt here in '69.
A two-part comeback of comebacks, it consumed 5 hours 12 minutes, a jewel from the time before tie-breakers and therapeutic furniture. No chairs were there to sag on at changeovers. You just kept moving and playing.
Ricardo Alonso "Pancho" Gonzalez -- Richard to his friends, "Gorgo" to his few colleagues on the lonely pro tour of one-night stands -- kept moving so long at the top level that he was still dangerous into his 44th year, a fiery patriarch. Nobody ever played tennis better. But the fire has burned out. This king is dead, and his like won't reappear.
Schroeder said, "He came from the wrong side of the tracks, a Chicano in L.A., but he carried himself as proudly as a Spanish nobleman." He had pride in performance, a ruggedly handsome man with a scarred cheek and soft voice.
Nobody called the volcanic Pancho "Gorgo" to his face. It stood for gorgonzola -- the big cheese -- and for years he was just that, carrying the fragile pro game around the world in his satchel. Pancho and pro tennis were synonymous.
"He's not the best player anymore." That was a slightly aggrieved Rod Laver in 1964, when Laver was, and deprived Gonzalez of a ninth U.S. Pro title in a splendid rainstormed final in Longwood, Mass. "But nobody -- including Pancho -- knows that. He's the one player everyone knows and wants to see."
Seeing Gonzalez at his greatest might have involved squeezing into a small armory or a high school gym when the pro caravan hit town, pitching its portable canvas court on whatever flooring, including ice. It was a king-of-the-hill tour, Gonzalez against the latest hotshot Wimbledon or U.S. champ lured to professionalism by promoter Jack Kramer's dollars. Frank Sedgman, Tony Trabert, Ken Rosewall, Lew Hoad, Ashley Cooper, Pancho Segura, Alex Olmedo -- a Hall of Fame parade -- all tried to knock him off his green canvas hill. But Pancho won and stayed king, zinging the magnificent serve, moving so fluidly, confronting the foe as though, said his closest pal, Segura, "he didn't want to do any more than kill you."
"It was a night-after-night nightmare," Rosewall said, shaking his head. "An experience that doesn't exist now. Imagine playing Sampras or Agassi almost every night throughout a year." Rosewall, a callow 22, did very well, but he lost like everybody else.
"Remember that cold winter night at Boston Garden?" It was 1957, and Gonzalez was conducting a three-way battle: against persistent Rosewall, also a more persistent ********* heckler and the insistent press with their insidious typewriters. In his rage to play and win, Gonzalez let no one interfere.
Pausing in his decisive 19-17 set win to silence the loud critic in the first row, Gonzalez intended to put his service grip on the poor guy's windpipe. At that moment the man in the next seat stood up to his full, muscular 6 feet 7 saying, "Why don't you just play, Pancho?" It was Jungle Jim Loscutoff, the Boston Celtics' enforcer.
Though 6 feet 2, a magnificent athlete, Gonzalez could see the wisdom in returning to quelling Rosewall and the clacking reporters in their balcony roost. Becoming an ack-ack gun, he sprayed the journalists with a barrage of balls. That turned off the labors of the survivors. Then he finished Rosewall.
"We didn't make much money but we had a lot of fun," said Segura. "But if you beat him, he might not talk to you for days. But he had a big heart. Difficult guy but honorable."
Gonzalez once recalled his rookie pro campaign: "Two guys were the show, and the show went on. That tour, '49-50, I got beat by Jack Kramer, who was also my boss. The promoter. I showed up one night, could hardly walk with a bum ankle, and told Jack I couldn't play. He says to me, Kid, we always play,' and got a doctor to shoot up the ankle with novocaine. That's the way it was."
The tennis show goes on, but without a majestic ornament who showed a couple of generations the wonder of power, presence and passion within his rectangle.
Bud Collins, a member of the Tennis Hall of Fame, writes on tennis for the Boston Globe and works as a commentator for NBC-TV., 1995
© 1995 The Washington Post Company
 
I agree. If he has a great clay court season and replaces it from his 2003 clay court season, it is enough to push him over the edge of a few of these others. Kevin
Patrick's stats shows that he is very close and competitive with those guys years already.
 
I agree. If he has a great clay court season and replaces it from his 2003 clay court season, it is enough to push him over the edge of a few of these others. Kevin
Patrick's stats shows that he is very close and very competitive with those guys two-span years already.
 
Federer is the best ever....no player EVER could beat him i mean come on thats ridiculous...Well, you cant compare players from two different eras right? Try comparing Chamberlin to Shaq...which one was better? You can Chamberlin's one hundered point performance is impossible to do nowadays even if your opponents are the bobcats.
 

Kevin Patrick

Hall of Fame
I know you're young, RoddickSafin, but its kinda sad that you have that attitude. I don't understand why so many feel the need to **** all over anything that isn't the 'present.' Whether or not Federer could beat anybody from any era isn't the issue, Borg, McEnroe & Wilt were amazing athletes & competitors that clearly distanced themselves from the field. Their records speak for themselves. Why do you feel the need to denigrate them? I read garbage like "a recreational player from today playing with a graphite racquet could beat Borg" on these boards. Pure nonsense, but why hold Borg's equipment against him, wood is what he played with & he clearly was the best in the world for a time. If Borg/McEnroe/Lendl were born 20 years later and had their games adjusted accordingly, they'd do just fine.

Do you consider Michael Jordan to be from a different era? Are today's players that remarkable that he couldn't compete with them? The way people unfavorably compare Sampras to Federer on these boards you'd think they were talking about Bill Tilden. No game has changed that much, no athlete has evolved that much that true talent wouldn't be able to be competitive in any era.

20 year's from now, your kids will be talking about how ordinary Federer looks from their perspective. Hopefully you will then realize how wrong they are.
 

NoBadMojo

G.O.A.T.
i gotta disagree Kevin..i think tennis is the game that has changed a real lot and i dont mean since pancho played..i mean since sampras played, and that makes it so much more difficult to even attempt a comparison, but each new crop of pros are better trained, faster, and more fit, and now they are armed w. hi tech gear which they will happily use if it gives them any bit of an edge..dont think there reallly is that in football or basketball or baseball or soccer..all of those have remained relatively unchanged. unfortunately volleys arent done so much, there really is almost no such thing as an aproach shot, etc etc. the number of UE's that Roger produced is unheard of for him, but that would have been the standard number for a Laver or a Gonzales..the equipment has alot to do with it, but players of then i feel would have made more errors than players of today even with the same gear. the game is that different..if it werent so we would still be seeing alot of serve/volley play at least on the hard courts, and wasnt it panatta servevolleying is way to the italian open and noah serve and volleying his way to the french? any chance of something like that happening today? no way..that sould be enough of an indicator how much the game has changed. this coming from an old fart who has seen laver play live (when past his prime), nastase, etc etc
 

spirit

Rookie
NoBadMojo said:
i and that makes it so much more difficult to even attempt a comparison, but each new crop of pros are better trained, faster, and more fit, and now they are armed w. hi tech gear which they will happily use if it gives them any bit of an edge..dont think there reallly is that in football or basketball or baseball or soccer..all of those have remained relatively unchanged.
Well, something has happened in baseball. Used to be 37, 38,39, 40 homeruns put you in contention for most homers in a season. Babe Ruth hit 60 home runs in a season that was until Roger Maris hit 61. Then years went by and the leaders now hit 50, 60, and 70 home runs. What's the record now, 73? Something must account for this - smaller ball parks, souped up ball, bigger and better conditioned athletes, steroids? How do you compare what some consider to be the best hitter ever in baseball,Ted Williams, -the last to hit for an average of over 400 for the season, and I think 562 lifetime homeruns and who spent 5 of his prime time years as U.S Marine fighter pilot in WWII and the Korean War - to Barry Bonds? For that matter, how do you compare Babe Ruth with Barry Bonds?
 

NoBadMojo

G.O.A.T.
i think those are subtle changes in comparison. but people who know baseball tell me the ball is hotter these days. but still, they arent scoring 20 runs in a game or anything like that and the athletes in baseball are just that..athletes, when before many of them werent even in half decent shape. in baseball you still have bunts and homers and all the same elements...in tennis, you barely even have serve.volley any more.''elements of the game are turning up missing. just from the time sampras retired until now, serve and volley had become almost extinct. edberg had to learn to stay back more to compete and they solved his serve and he retired..ditto for rafter..they never solved the sampras serve however,,but that is my point all along, you really cant compare past althletes to present ones because things are diff now than then, but you gota believe they are better conditioned, bigger, stronger, faster, better training techniques etc unless you dont believe that people evolve...so each generation of tennis palyers are better than the preevious.....fed is better than samps, samps was better laver, etc etc. also, past players are often exhaggerated in the mystique.
 
Agreed Mojo...and i can hardly belive my kids saying "Daddy wow Federer is so normal...jeez. how could that man be no.1 for 10 years?" while watching a tape.
 

AndrewD

Legend
I'm sorry mate but anyone who thinks that Mecir and Wilander were just 'pusher's couldnt have seen them play. 'Attacking' doesn't mean hitting winners left, right and centre. It means what it means, taking the game to the other player, attacking them. Wilander could bore you to tears, especially in his early days, but he knew his way around the net. Mecir is another thing altogether. Just the way he played was aggressive but in a totally different way to guys like Becker. It was attacking because he didn't give his opponents time to breath.
 

PJVA

Rookie
In comparing the top 10 of '85 and '05 you have missed one thing that even McEnroe concedes. In that '85 era and before the players were not as athletic and no one was facing huge servers of 140 mph and more. Today even the return of serve is bigger. The fact that Federer can use finese and variety against the power baseline hitters of today is something miraculous. In McEnroe's day it was about deftly dinging the ball to one side or the other and then a little drop over the net. That's wonderful but not so difficult when the velocity of groundstrokes is slow.

Here's a site that compares the all time best players.

http://www.setratings.com/content/view/30/2/

It puts McEnroe #1, Federer #2, Borg #3, Lendl #4 in all time greatness of achievements. Federer still has time to do more of course. But if Mac calls him the greatest he's ever seen I think he should know.
 

snark

Rookie
NoBadMojo said:
ithe number of UE's that Roger produced is unheard of for him, but that would have been the standard number for a Laver or a Gonzales..the equipment has alot to do with it, but players of then i feel would have made more errors than players of today even with the same gear. the game is that different..

Any evidence to back this up?

If I remember correctly, in a Borg - McEnroe final (which Borg won) the total number of unforced errors was three!
 

spirit

Rookie
PJVA said:
In comparing the top 10 of '85 and '05 you have missed one thing that even McEnroe concedes. In that '85 era and before the players were not as athletic and no one was facing huge servers of 140 mph and more. Today even the return of serve is bigger. The fact that Federer can use finese and variety against the power baseline hitters of today is something miraculous. In McEnroe's day it was about deftly dinging the ball to one side or the other and then a little drop over the net. That's wonderful but not so difficult when the velocity of groundstrokes is slow.

Here's a site that compares the all time best players.

http://www.setratings.com/content/view/30/2/

It puts McEnroe #1, Federer #2, Borg #3, Lendl #4 in all time greatness of achievements. Federer still has time to do more of course. But if Mac calls him the greatest he's ever seen I think he should know.
Interesting rating system. Putting the Mac #1 and Federer #2 seems about right (with the Fed still with much play left, he will surely pass Mac in this system). In fact, if Mac had won that final against Lendl at Roland Garros in 1984, we would all probably be conceding he was the greatest player in the open era. I emphasize "open era" here, because that is what this rating system does, rates player who played all, or most, of their career in the open era. It leaves out a player like Richard "Pancho" Gonzalez. Does it leave out Rod Laver?

1984 final, Roland Garros: John McEnroe v Ivan Lendl

Those critics who felt John McEnroe was his own worst enemy had a field day during this match.

McEnroe had blazed his way through the tournament by swearing, arguing, driving balls at the photographers' pit, claiming he was on a "Haagen-Dazs" diet, and requesting on-court repairs mid-match.

Brilliantly, he took a two-sets-to-love lead against Lendl in final, but then he indulged his temper once too often.

At 1-1 in the third, McEnroe objected to a cameraman's headset that was emitting the director's instructions and cast it aside.

Lendl held serve and then saved three break points later in the decisive third set when McEnroe berated photographers.

McEnroe, who succumbed 5-7 in the fifth to Lendl, would never win the French Open, and he never had a better chance than that year.

Alas, he became one of the greatest players to miss out on at least one grand slam title.
 

andfor

Legend
What a great list. Thanks PJVA.

Ratings Flash
All-Time Top Ratings
1 McEnroe, J. (USA ) 2536
2 Federer, R. (SUI ) 2464
3 Borg, B. (SWE ) 2458
4 Lendl, I. (USA ) 2455
5 Sampras, P. (USA ) 2385
6 Connors, J. (USA ) 2379
7 Agassi, A. (USA ) 2372
8 Becker, B. (GER ) 2360
 
In my opinion, as great as Roger is, I dont see how one could even start considering him over McEnroe, Borg, or Lendl yet. He has about half the slams they do, and when you think of barometers such as the "ironman factor" it is hard to see how he could have gotten that high already. He could retire today, and have had a truly great career and be a great player. His best year or span of two years, and his ability at his peak for his time, could be compared to those all-timers. However his entire career at this point could not, he has gone alot of the way to getting to that area, but still needs to go further clearly.
 

Camilio Pascual

Hall of Fame
andfor said:
What a great list. Thanks PJVA.

Ratings Flash
All-Time Top Ratings
1 McEnroe, J. (USA ) 2536
2 Federer, R. (SUI ) 2464
3 Borg, B. (SWE ) 2458
4 Lendl, I. (USA ) 2455
5 Sampras, P. (USA ) 2385
6 Connors, J. (USA ) 2379
7 Agassi, A. (USA ) 2372
8 Becker, B. (GER ) 2360
It's either a terrible or misnamed list. "All-Time" and nobody from before the Open Era!!! Hogwash title.
 
I cant believe Johnny Mac never won a grand slam past the age of 25 though. That is a deterrant on his greatness for me, as much as I hate to say it, since I love watching old tapes of his tennis.
 
L

laurie

Guest
I just love the argument about somehow been better trained and better conditioned and all that stuff than just say five years ago. Funny that, considering Hewitt, Safin, Thomas Johanson, Kiefer, Henman, Chela, Moya, Haas, Agassi, Ferrero, Hrbaty, Kuerten, Scheuttler etc etc etc were all around in 2000. I remember Fererro beating Hewitt in 2000 to win the Davis Cup for Spain.

Considering this, when Sampras won the US Open in 2002 age 31 and Agassi the Aus Open in 2003 age 32 it was great for the game that older guys could beat the younger players. Anyone who thinks things change that dramatically in such a short space of time is either extremely young or needs their brains tested. The modern game as we know it today has been played hard and fast and physical since the mid 1908s when Becker, Noah, Lendl, Edberg, Cash, Wilander,Agassi came through and then continued with Courier, Goran, Sampras, Stich, Krajicek, Rafter, Brugera, Muster, Pioline etc etc. Please note with all these top names, they all have different styles of play.

Where you can say the game has changed dramatically since the 1980s is the women's game. There are a lot more physically imposing and athletic players, Sharapova been the latest.

Also, the technical level of the men's game has slightly gone down. Despite the likes of Jonathon Johansson serving really fast first serves, the serve is not really a weapon. Why? Beacuse they don't have the placement. Also, they can't impart the same sort of spin on the ball as the players before them. So a fast serve from a Becker, a Sampras, a Goran, a Stich and Krajicek is harder to deal with at 125mph with spin in the corners than a fast flat bomb by Johannson at 140mph.

Also, the second serve in the men's game seems to have gone AWOL. Its almost gone full circle from the past. The second serve is a means to get the ball into play, not a shot to outsmart your opponent. Therefore more players have an equal chance against eachother on the ad court. Thats where Federer is so good, he has the mind and ability to seve with pace and spin like the guys before him.

The problem is, not enough players are playing with that kind of skill against him. There are far too many players in todays game who are all alike. They don't have the ability, or the willpower to change the game or style of play during a match.
 

andfor

Legend
NoBadMojo said:
fed is better than samps, samps was better laver, etc etc. also, past players are often exhaggerated in the mystique.
With all due respect I'll say for argument sake that we tend to forget how good the players of the past where. Lendl, Edberg, Emerson, Poncho Gonzalez, Hoad etc. etc. where all great players, highly trained and very fit. Heck alot of folks have forgotton how good Borg and Sampras where. Even McEnroe who we tend to think of as not very fit played a full schedule of single and doubles and was a tremendous force in his prime. Trying to rightfully compare players of today to players of the past ultimately is an injustice to the latter. There is really no way to fully quantify it and we can argue our points until the end of the earth with out resolve.

As for players not serve and volleying today. Mark my word. We will see that style come back. I can't say when but it will. In tennis as in life so many things are cyclical in nature. Styles that dominate today's landscape soon become a thing of the past.
 

Camilio Pascual

Hall of Fame
Don Budge - 1937 & 1938
Singles:
Won all 6 Majors he entered including the Grand Slam in 1938.
Rankings:
Ranked #1, both years.
Davis Cup when it was a big deal in U.S.:
Went 10-0 in singles, including 2-0 each year in the final to lead U.S. to Davis Cup victories both years.
Doubles:
Won Wimby 1937 & 1938 and U.S. in 1938.
Reached final of Roland Garros 1938 and U.S. 1937.
Mixed doubles:
Won U.S. and Wimby both years.
Totals:
13 Majors titles in 2 years.
2 Davis Cups.
Match record:
We don't know, incomplete records.
Best arguments:
Slammed.
Not a one trick pony singles player, was a major force in doubles.
 

PJVA

Rookie
Camilio. in the days of Budge they used to have the winner of Wimbledon go directly to the final the next year and not have to play any rounds. Also they used to play all the majors on Grass or Clay.

I would imagine most of the field were like amateurs compared to today.
 

PJVA

Rookie
andfor said:
With all due respect I'll say for argument sake that we tend to forget how good the players of the past where. Lendl, Edberg, Emerson, Poncho Gonzalez, Hoad etc. etc. where all great players, highly trained and very fit.
QUOTE]

They were good for their day but going back to the days of McEnroe, Borg and Connors the players were smaller and slighter and they didn't lift weights and train other than playing tennis. Connors and Borg were the size of Hewitt, McEnroe and Nastase were about the size of a young Agassi except with no muscle what so ever. Lendl was big......about the size of Federer. I read McEnroe's book and he said the top players went from one jet set party to another. They weren't even thinking about getting stronger or faster. I am not arguing about Sampras or Edberg's athetiscism they were from the more current generation of more athletic bigger, stronger players.
 

HookEmJeff

Semi-Pro
I agree with what Fedfan says. Clearly, Roger is on PATH to becoming the greatest, but he's got to do this over time and sustain it to be the All-Time best. I would say that the level he's currently playing at, is better than anything I've ever seen, and I've heard so many people say that what he's doing now on a tennis court IS the highest quality the game has ever been played at. He's just downright nasty right now in a final. Even Sampras wasn't that good in finals.
Also, tha SET rating thing has some weird matches being taken into account to generate those ratings. I don't see how a 6-3, 6-4 win by Sampras over Bjorkman in a Masters Tournament or a 6-3, 6-3 final round win over Chang in Memphis in 1993 or whatever, really enhanced his legacy. Interesting study and I applaud the graphics and the research...but the content is pretty flawed.

Jeff
 

Camilio Pascual

Hall of Fame
PJVA said:
Camilio. in the days of Budge they used to have the winner of Wimbledon go directly to the final the next year and not have to play any rounds. Also they used to play all the majors on Grass or Clay.

I would imagine most of the field were like amateurs compared to today.
Discontinued in 1922, Budge went through all the rounds.
There were not as many pros then, the field was most likely stronger than Rod's was in 1962. Good point though, Perry went pro in 1937. Yeah, everybody was playing on grass or clay...the point? Versatility? See below.
Let's not forget the doubles achievements while he won those 6 Majors in 2 years. There is an indication of a well rounded game and understanding of the sport.
 

andfor

Legend
PJVA said:
andfor said:
With all due respect I'll say for argument sake that we tend to forget how good the players of the past where. Lendl, Edberg, Emerson, Poncho Gonzalez, Hoad etc. etc. where all great players, highly trained and very fit.
QUOTE]

They were good for their day but going back to the days of McEnroe, Borg and Connors the players were smaller and slighter and they didn't lift weights and train other than playing tennis. Connors and Borg were the size of Hewitt, McEnroe and Nastase were about the size of a young Agassi except with no muscle what so ever. Lendl was big......about the size of Federer. I read McEnroe's book and he said the top players went from one jet set party to another. They weren't even thinking about getting stronger or faster. I am not arguing about Sampras or Edberg's athetiscism they were from the more current generation of more athletic bigger, stronger players.
I get it now. The players of the past greatness and skill was mearly and illusion. So if you put Fed against Mac in "83" given the conditions he would be a partier and suck like everyone else then. If you put Mac in the 2000's and he trained like everyone else he would still dominate. This whole discussion is flawed.
 
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