Had Haas won the 2002 Australian Open would his career have been different

craigster

Banned
Looking back Haas's best chance of a slam by far was the 2002 Australian Open. He lost in 5 sets to Safin after being up 2 sets to 1. He had no chance really in the last 2 sets (which he lost 6-0, 6-2) since Safin went into unbeatable mode, and Haas after the break/delay also had his already inflamed shoulder stiffen up to boot. He also ran out of gas after a whole bunch of 5 setters with a tough draw. However Haas could have won each of the first 3 sets, he lost the 2nd set after being up a break when Safin was a bit subpar and struggling. He probably would have beaten Johansson in the final.

I think had he won there his career would have been different even with all the injuries. He would have had the confidence to win some of the big matches in slams he lost, such as maybe the 2006 Australian Open 4th round he lost in 5 sets to Federer. I just think with a slam title until his belt his overall confidence would have been higher, and he could have gone to the next level with his immense talent, even with all the injuries he has had. He needed that big breakthrough to go to the next level mentally.
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
Looking back Haas's best chance of a slam by far was the 2002 Australian Open. He lost in 5 sets to Safin after being up 2 sets to 1. He had no chance really in the last 2 sets (which he lost 6-0, 6-2) since Safin went into unbeatable mode, and Haas after the break/delay also had his already inflamed shoulder stiffen up to boot. He also ran out of gas after a whole bunch of 5 setters with a tough draw. However Haas could have won each of the first 3 sets, he lost the 2nd set after being up a break when Safin was a bit subpar and struggling. He probably would have beaten Johansson in the final.

I think had he won there his career would have been different even with all the injuries. He would have had the confidence to win some of the big matches in slams he lost, such as maybe the 2006 Australian Open 4th round he lost in 5 sets to Federer. I just think with a slam title until his belt his overall confidence would have been higher, and he could have gone to the next level with his immense talent, even with all the injuries he has had. He needed that big breakthrough to go to the next level mentally.


I doubt Haas wins that match. Federer was blowing him away until he got complacent, when it came down to it Federer was just too good.

I do think Haas may have beaten Johansson though, I doubt he would have made the same mistake as Safin :D
 

craigster

Banned
I doubt Haas wins that match. Federer was blowing him away until he got complacent, when it came down to it Federer was just too good.

I do think Haas may have beaten Johansson though, I doubt he would have made the same mistake as Safin :D

I just think in general he would have had more belief and confidence in himself to bid for big titles and challenge the very best if got that slam win relatively early. Without it and with Hewitt, Roddick, Federer, Ferrero, all having broken through (and Safin but well earlier than all of those) I think it affected his mentality and he didnt really have the belief he could ever rise to that level, and that plus all the injuries.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
I just think in general he would have had more belief and confidence in himself to bid for big titles and challenge the very best if got that slam win relatively early. Without it and with Hewitt, Roddick, Federer, Ferrero, all having broken through (and Safin but well earlier than all of those) I think it affected his mentality and he didnt really have the belief he could ever rise to that level, and that plus all the injuries.
I am not sure he had what it took to have any longevity at the same level though. I do see him winning the 2002 Australian Open if he makes the final - but I don't see his future problems going away either. I also noted that each time he returned to the tour post 2002, his level was never quite as high as it was before -- and a lot of that had to do with the nature of his injuries and not his level of confidence, which I am sure waned along with the injuries anyway.

I think he makes things hard for Hewitt in 2002, pushing him for the No. 1 spot until what really happened does happen again. I don't see him repeating said GS glory due to the injuries, his history and how unlucky he was. I also don't see him getting past Federer in 2006, Fed might have a terrible 5-set record but back in 2006, if it was anybody besides Nadal he'd have had enough belief to take them out.
 

HipRotation

Hall of Fame
As much as it changed for Roddick, Ferrero, Costa etc. Kinda like asking what if Chang didn't win the French Open, everyone was making a big deal out of Agassi making the semi finals the year before and being the first American since Trabert. Then comes along another American out of nowhere and wins it, did this play on Agassi's mind for the next 3 years causing him to flounder at slams and not win the french until 10 years later? Really makes you think.
 

Noelan

Legend
I don't think so. Guy was one of the weakest players as far as winning mentality is concerned. Yeah I know injuries derailed a lot his career but I doubt that even without it he would be any successful than he was.
Reminds me a little of Ivanovic from WTA, beautiful face, and game but those were just shells in which they were hiding their maiden weaknesses . At least Ivanovic won one GS when she had a chance.
 

craigster

Banned
I am not sure he had what it took to have any longevity at the same level though. I do see him winning the 2002 Australian Open if he makes the final - but I don't see his future problems going away either. I also noted that each time he returned to the tour post 2002, his level was never quite as high as it was before -- and a lot of that had to do with the nature of his injuries and not his level of confidence, which I am sure waned along with the injuries anyway.

I think he makes things hard for Hewitt in 2002, pushing him for the No. 1 spot until what really happened does happen again. I don't see him repeating said GS glory due to the injuries, his history and how unlucky he was. I also don't see him getting past Federer in 2006, Fed might have a terrible 5-set record but back in 2006, if it was anybody besides Nadal he'd have had enough belief to take them out.

I do agree his injuries would have really limited his potential regardless. I just think with more confidence he might have been able to push a bit further those periods he was healthy or made good runs. Who knows though.

I wonder why he is so injury prone and couldn't do anything about it. Was it a poor training regimen, his body type, poor coaching, or just plain bad luck? I feel awful he had to go through a career like that as he is the kind of player the mens game could have really used- feisty personality, good looking, from a tennis rich country, a bit controversial, a nice and friendly guy, and an interesting and unique and complete game. He would never be a dominant player but he could have been one of those strong slam potential winning challengers behind the big 3/big 4 the game sorely lacked a lot of the last 10 years.
 

craigster

Banned
As much as it changed for Roddick, Ferrero, Costa etc. Kinda like asking what if Chang didn't win the French Open, everyone was making a big deal out of Agassi making the semi finals the year before and being the first American since Trabert. Then comes along another American out of nowhere and wins it, did this play on Agassi's mind for the next 3 years causing him to flounder at slams and not win the french until 10 years later? Really makes you think.

Very good point. Perhaps it really doesn't mean much. I think it makes more a potential difference for Haas than those though since he is mentally weak, which those others aren't.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
I do agree his injuries would have really limited his potential regardless. I just think with more confidence he might have been able to push a bit further those periods he was healthy or made good runs. Who knows though.

I wonder why he is so injury prone and couldn't do anything about it. Was it a poor training regimen, his body type, poor coaching, or just plain bad luck? I feel awful he had to go through a career like that as he is the kind of player the mens game could have really used- feisty personality, good looking, from a tennis rich country, a bit controversial, a nice and friendly guy, and an interesting and unique and complete game. He would never be a dominant player but he could have been one of those strong slam potential winning challengers behind the big 3/big 4 the game sorely lacked a lot of the last 10 years.
Agreed.

I have no idea why his body faltered the way it did. I do know personal affairs first took hold, then shortly after he just fell apart. His parents had a vehicle accident, and then only a short time later he was dealing with injuries of his own.

I don't feel his style of play brought them on either, as he played in a way that wouldn't incapacitate him like other players. I think he was just unlucky with genetics and/or luck in general.
 

craigster

Banned
Agreed.

I have no idea why his body faltered the way it did. I do know personal affairs first took hold, then shortly after he just fell apart. His parents had a vehicle accident, and then only a short time later he was dealing with injuries of his own.

I don't feel his style of play brought them on either, as he played in a way that wouldn't incapacitate him like other players. I think he was just unlucky with genetics and/or luck in general.

Yeah I agree. He did train with Nick most of his career, who is someone whose knowledge I question despite his success. Still most of Nick's pupils are not injury prone so I dont think it was that either.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
Yeah I agree. He did train with Nick most of his career, who is someone whose knowledge I question despite his success. Still most of Nick's pupils are not injury prone so I dont think it was that either.
I also think time away from the game damaged him. Imagine taking someone like Federer out of the game mid-way through 2004 for example and placing him back into the game in 2006 -- this is going to marginally affect what he can produce in the future. I'm not saying Haas had what it took to be as good as Federer, but everything went against him and he still made a decent career out of what he could.

Is he still planning on coming back to the tour? If so he may finally get to hang up the racquet on his terms.
 

craigster

Banned
I also think time away from the game damaged him. Imagine taking someone like Federer out of the game mid-way through 2004 for example and placing him back into the game in 2006 -- this is going to marginally affect what he can produce in the future. I'm not saying Haas had what it took to be as good as Federer, but everything went against him and he still made a decent career out of what he could.

Is he still planning on coming back to the tour? If so he may finally get to hang up the racquet on his terms.

I totally agree on that, and tennis is a sport if you miss any significant period of time you lose momentum and an edge even if your game is basically close to the same. Especialy with the game being so mental. Look at Justine's return in 2010, she came back technically being almost as good as before, the womens game much weaker than when she left as the dominant player, even owning Serena that year, but didnt win a big title, got crushed by Maria and Serena and lost to many players she never had problems with before, and didnt even make it back into the top 10 before retiring again. Capriati took years to get back to the top, even once she started getting in shape in late 98/early 99. Rubin never got back to where she was in early 96 after missing a couple years with wrist injuries. So that really hurts him, especialy since it wasnt even just one extended break, when he was making progress up, it was another injury layoff time, and starting over again. It is even harder for him since his strength is a great all around game with lots of variety and enough power. He doesnt have that one enormous weapon to just rely on and win easy points. Plus his mental game and confidence not being the strongest to begin with.

I am not sure on your last question, but I check his website when I can and I havent seen any news either way.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
I totally agree on that, and tennis is a sport if you miss any significant period of time you lose momentum and an edge even if your game is basically close to the same. Especialy with the game being so mental. Look at Justine's return in 2010, she came back technically being almost as good as before, the womens game much weaker than when she left as the dominant player, even owning Serena that year, but didnt win a big title, got crushed by Maria and Serena and lost to many players she never had problems with before, and didnt even make it back into the top 10 before retiring again. Capriati took years to get back to the top, even once she started getting in shape in late 98/early 99. Rubin never got back to where she was in early 96 after missing a couple years with wrist injuries. So that really hurts him, especialy since it wasnt even just one extended break, when he was making progress up, it was another injury layoff time, and starting over again. It is even harder for him since his strength is a great all around game with lots of variety and enough power. He doesnt have that one enormous weapon to just rely on and win easy points. Plus his mental game and confidence not being the strongest to begin with.

I am not sure on your last question, but I check his website when I can and I havent seen any news either way.
The game also moved away from the true "all-court" style Haas played with (not too dissimilar to guys like Sampras or even Federer; but without any huge weapons they had in their arsenal like a huge forehand, serve, ect) to one that was mainly dominated by power-baseliners. I don't think Haas ever had a true problem with that style of play, but I don't think he'd personally have the power or even the guile to consistently push by guys like that - especially Nadal/Djokovic on the biggest stages.

I think he was a victim of his time, along with injuries and bad luck to boot. He could have at least won a slam but he wasn't truly given enough of a chance to do so.
 

craigster

Banned
The game also moved away from the true "all-court" style Haas played with (not too dissimilar to guys like Sampras or even Federer; but without any huge weapons they had in their arsenal like a huge forehand, serve, ect) to one that was mainly dominated by power-baseliners. I don't think Haas ever had a true problem with that style of play, but I don't think he'd personally have the power or even the guile to consistently push by guys like that - especially Nadal/Djokovic on the biggest stages.

I think he was a victim of his time, along with injuries and bad luck to boot. He could have at least won a slam but he wasn't truly given enough of a chance to do so.

Even though his playing style is nothing like Haas's I think the change in game was also hard on Hewitt in a different way. He loves to counterpunch, and especialy love to return, pass, and defend against serve and volleyers and all court attacking power hitters. With everyone staying back, and many guys even playing from well beyond the baseline he could no longer do this. Add to that losing some speed after his hip problems and he was in big trouble. That plus the slowing of the court surfaces, when he always preferred faster courts.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
Even though his playing style is nothing like Haas's I think the change in game was also hard on Hewitt in a different way. He loves to counterpunch, and especialy love to return, pass, and defend against serve and volleyers and all court attacking power hitters. With everyone staying back, and many guys even playing from well beyond the baseline he could no longer do this. Add to that losing some speed after his hip problems and he was in big trouble. That plus the slowing of the court surfaces, when he always preferred faster courts.
Hewitt never really had a problem playing guys from the back of the court at his best IIRC - he and Agassi had quite a fierce rivalry and they both enjoyed playing that far back. Noted he didn't have any stand-out weapon, much like Haas, but I think he was more set-up for the current era than Tommy.

I do believe the change in S&V hurt him quite a bit however, and turned him from being a top 3 player into just a regular top 10 guy -- and with injuries that pushed him back to being a regular top 20 guy.
 

craigster

Banned
Would his parents have still gotten in the accident? That's what killed his career, not the AO loss.

Long term? I mean I am sure that was hard on him at the time, but they completely recovered and are doing very well from what I know. So I don't think so, unless there is something I haven't heard.
 
It would have made him a slam champion, so even if every single result for the rest of his career were unchanged, it would have profoundly affected his career.
 

Wilhelm

Hall of Fame
Haas is one unlucky fellow. He had so many problems, but his game wasn't one. His last great win in Indian Wells still is the boilerplate how to beat Djokovic with an all court game.
 

metsman

G.O.A.T.
Long term? I mean I am sure that was hard on him at the time, but they completely recovered and are doing very well from what I know. So I don't think so, unless there is something I haven't heard.
he probably would have been one of the top 3 favorites for Wimbledon. Instead he had to miss it, completely skip 6 weeks and then when he came back he wasn't the same probably out of concern for them. He was really never the same afterwards and then the injuries piled up
 
he probably would have been one of the top 3 favorites for Wimbledon. Instead he had to miss it, completely skip 6 weeks and then when he came back he wasn't the same probably out of concern for them. He was really never the same afterwards and then the injuries piled up

Which Wimbledon was this? 2002? If so, I don't see him beating Hewitt on the form Hewitt showed. With a decent draw, he might have made the final, though.
 
Looking back Haas's best chance of a slam by far was the 2002 Australian Open. He lost in 5 sets to Safin after being up 2 sets to 1. He had no chance really in the last 2 sets (which he lost 6-0, 6-2) since Safin went into unbeatable mode, and Haas after the break/delay also had his already inflamed shoulder stiffen up to boot. He also ran out of gas after a whole bunch of 5 setters with a tough draw. However Haas could have won each of the first 3 sets, he lost the 2nd set after being up a break when Safin was a bit subpar and struggling. He probably would have beaten Johansson in the final.

I think had he won there his career would have been different even with all the injuries. He would have had the confidence to win some of the big matches in slams he lost, such as maybe the 2006 Australian Open 4th round he lost in 5 sets to Federer. I just think with a slam title until his belt his overall confidence would have been higher, and he could have gone to the next level with his immense talent, even with all the injuries he has had. He needed that big breakthrough to go to the next level mentally.
No

He's an overrated player.
 

craigster

Banned
Which Wimbledon was this? 2002? If so, I don't see him beating Hewitt on the form Hewitt showed. With a decent draw, he might have made the final, though.

I agree, but Haas could play Hewitt alot closer than Nalbandian or a badly off form Henman were able to. I think he could have taken him to a good 4 set match but ultimately still likely lost.
 

Tardigrade

Banned
Which Wimbledon was this? 2002? If so, I don't see him beating Hewitt on the form Hewitt showed. With a decent draw, he might have made the final, though.


Yep, Hewitt showed tremendous ability beating a bunch of nobodies and Nalbandian (A nobody on grass; His biggest achievement was kicking a linesman) in the final. It was by far the weakest draw I have ever seen along with Murray's draw this year.
 

Tardigrade

Banned
That's on you, Chichi :D

No, it's not on me; You've literally called me out for saying Haas isn't overrated. Please provide proof that Haas in overrated on this board - you were the one to say it. The fact is I cant find any evidence of Haas being overrated on this board and neither will you. You basically tried talking **** and had no other way to cover yourself so resorted to 'prove it doesn't exist'.





For the lurker of casual fan who has never seen Haas play; Haas was a very fine player, although I heard things about his character which wasn't fine, he was elegant, had a good baseline game, good serve and volley ability and had a lovely one handed backhand. He missed 03 due to having family issues, and had injury problems.




The fact he nearly broached (lol) the top 10 at 35 years old after all of his injury/personal troubles pretty much speaks volumes about his ability. I've never seen anyone handle Roddick's serve the way Haas could. Haas made Federer's ability of defending the Roddick serve look mundane and average. Roddick's serve is a top 5 serve in history. Haas is not overrated, anyone who thinks Haas is overrated should either read the crap that gets posted about Rios or catch up on the stuff people were saying about Dimitrov in 2010. Better yet, feel free to read upon the countless articles written by journalists on how Gasquet was going to win 10 slams. I swear the dude barely has 10 titles in his career.
 

HuusHould

Hall of Fame
I doubt Haas wins that match. Federer was blowing him away until he got complacent, when it came down to it Federer was just too good.

I do think Haas may have beaten Johansson though, I doubt he would have made the same mistake as Safin :D

I agree, the Fed was in control of that match, Haas did well to nab a couple of sets. It would've taken a bit of a choke for Haas to win it, confident or not.

I would've given him a 60% chance of beating Johansson if he'd gotten past Safin at the AO that year.

You look at someone like Stosur, she's beaten Serena in the final of the US Open and the psychological demons still plague her. I loved Haas's game, but I think he only had 1 or 2 major titles in him at best. I'm disappointed that he and Nalbandian never won a major, Haas in particular deserved his moment in the sun!
 

Mainsacross

Semi-Pro

Watch from 12:35 on. When asked which match he would like to replay from all the ones in his career, Haas talks about the Safin AO match.
 

tipsa...don'tlikehim!

Talk Tennis Guru
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Mainsacross

Semi-Pro
Wonder what he would have done differently?
He thinks stretching out his body during the rain delay was a bad idea. He wishes he had stayed close to court and kept moving around to keep his body warmed up instead. I think that's fair. I have had my body fall asleep on me after extended breaks between games and lost my momentum.

I have to say that he comes across as very self-aware and gracious in the interview. He doesn't sound bitter despite the way things turned out for him. All things considered, being remembered as a solid pro with some great matches in your career, appointed tournament director of IW, and married to a beautiful model is not a bad way to end up at all.
 
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