How long did Connors actually use the Pro Staff 85?

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
#1
We know that Connors switched to the Pro Staff Mid some time during the summer of 1984 after Wimbledon and switched back to his T-2000 for several more years some time after the 1984 US Open, but for how long did he actually use the Pro Staff that was designed by and for him?

1984 French Open:



1984 Wimbledon:



1984 US Open:



1985 French Open:



1985 Wimbledon:



1985 US Open:

 

big ted

Hall of Fame
#3
im guessing up until spring '85? i think poster rabbit even said something like during that time he would still play with his T2000 in early rounds in small tournaments and then switch to the prostaff during televised matches out of contractual necessity i assume? so he never really adapted to it even though they said he helped design it..
i think the final nail in the coffin when he ditched his T2000 was when he went out early at the 86 us open to todd witsken. after that he switched and never really looked back.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
#4
im guessing up until spring '85? i think poster rabbit even said something like during that time he would still play with his T2000 in early rounds in small tournaments and then switch to the prostaff during televised matches out of contractual necessity i assume? so he never really adapted to it even though they said he helped design it..
i think the final nail in the coffin when he ditched his T2000 was when he went out early at the 86 us open to todd witsken. after that he switched and never really looked back.
Yeah, Rabbit mentioned in another thread that Connors used the ProStaff for about 18 months but I couldn't really find evidence of that, so I was wondering if anyone else had any information to substantiate Rabbit's claim? I mean, the time between the end of '84 Wimbledon and beginning of '85 French Open would have been only about 10 months. I'm sure all of Connors's matches in the Slams would have been televised somewhere so these pics show that he was probably using the T-2000 in all of his matches. I couldn't find any pics of him using the ProStaff other than at the '84 US Open.
 
#13
He used the PS85 in the Davis Cup final -84 against Sweden.
That was in the middle of December 1984.

You can find pictures here:
http://www.daviscup.com/en/draws-results/tie/details.aspx?tieId=10005481
Interesting......maybe that's why he got crushed by Wilander, 6-1, 6-3, 6-3? LOL

Perhaps that was the straw that finally broke the camel's back and he ditched the PS 85 and went back to his trusty T-2000 after that devastating Davis Cup final loss?

Thanks for the info.
 
#15
I didn't know you could hit a two-handed backhand with a midsize racquet.
Both of these are standard size racquets which are 20 sq. in. SMALLER than the ProStaff 85 Midsize:






Not only that, but two-handed backhand volleys with a standard size:





And, yes, with a Midsize, too (PS 85)



 

Seth

Hall of Fame
#16
Both of these are standard size racquets which are 20 sq. in. SMALLER than the ProStaff 85 Midsize:






Not only that, but two-handed backhand volleys with a standard size:





And, yes, with a Midsize, too (PS 85)



These guys were shining stars in their time. It takes true talent to effectively use a standard/midsize racquet, let alone hit a two-handed backhand with one. How would these fellows do playing The Modern Game?
 
#18
Just found this very interesting tidbit:

"At the Tokyo Indoor in October 1983 Connors switched to a new mid-size graphite racket, the Wilson ProStaff, that had been designed especially for him and he used it on the 1984 tour.[18] But 1985 again found Connors playing with the T2000."

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jimmy_Connors

And this would back that up:

"Since its release in 1983, the Wilson Pro Staff 6.0 has established itself as one of, if not the, epitomic player’s frames of the modern era."

http://www.tennis.com/gear/2012/06/tennis-radar-modern-classics/38583/#.VnChnuLfiQB

:D

But then we see him using the T-2000 again at both the French Open and Wimbledon in 1984 (above pics).
 
#21
BP- was the PS85 just "released" for Connors in 1983? And then went into world wide release in 1984?
Don't know. I'm just sharing information I've been able to find while trying to figure out how long Connors used the PS 85.

At least it looks like Connors "introduced" it to the world in October 1983. :)
 
#22
OK, I think I may have found the definitive answer to this question:

"Connors said he made the switch essentially because he wanted to step out of the Dark Ages. The steel
T2000, which Wilson stopped selling in 1982, has a small sweet spot and doesn`t offer
nearly the power and control of the midsized, graphite ProStaff.
But Connors discovered this winter it was hard to let go of an old friend. Connors lost to Miloslav Mecir in the semifinals of the U.S. Pro Indoor Championships in Philadelphia. The following week, he fell to Stefan Edberg in Memphis. Then, in a tournament in La Quinta, Calif., Connors was crushed by Greg Holmes 6-0, 6-3.
After taking a month off (``the best time of the year``), Connors competed in the Paine-Webber Classic in Ft. Myers, Fla., last week. Which racket did he use? Yep, the T2000."


http://articles.chicagotribune.com/...80772_1_racket-pro-indoor-championships-t2000

So it looks like he continued to use the ProStaff until the end of February 1985 (La Quinta) and then switched back to the T-2000 in March 1985 (Ft. Myers). We know he used the T-2000 at the '85 French Open, so unless we can find evidence that he switched back to the ProStaff in April 1985 and before the French Open, I think we can safely assume that he didn't use the ProStaff again in tournaments after February 1985.

So August 1984 to February 1985 = 7 months total. :)
 
#24
Connors using the T-2000 at the Dallas WCT in April 1984.


So it looks like after using the ProStaff in October 1983 in Tokyo, he didn't use it again in a tournament until August 1984.


And here's something interesting. Although Connors had stopped using the ProStaff in February 1985, Tennis Magazine put him on its October 1985 cover using the ProStaff. LOL I'm sure the advertising dollars from Wilson to the magazine had some influence on this. ;)

 
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#26
I was there when Connors lost to Mecir @ the EBEL US Pro Indoors and smashed his Pro Staffs in the tunnel as he exited the Spectrum's court . That was the last Sat in Jan,1985.
 
#27
I was there when Connors lost to Mecir @ the EBEL US Pro Indoors and smashed his Pro Staffs in the tunnel as he exited the Spectrum's court . That was the last Sat in Jan,1985.
Very cool! Instead of smashing them, too bad he didn't just toss them all into the crowd. Had you gotten one, it would probably be worth a lot of money today - one of the very earliest ProStaffs ever produced.

I understand he was under tremendous pressure from Wilson to continue using the ProStaff since the T-2000 was discontinued 2 years earlier so Wilson couldn't make any money selling those any longer, and of course they wanted maximum market exposure for the new ProStaff. I heard that after Connors switched back to the T-2000 for good, Wilson canceled his contract. I assume that was when Connors appealed to the general public to send him any T-2000s that they were no longer using because he couldn't get any more from Wilson. :)
 
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#30
I was there when Connors lost to Mecir @ the EBEL US Pro Indoors and smashed his Pro Staffs in the tunnel as he exited the Spectrum's court . That was the last Sat in Jan,1985.
Thank you. I remember when I was a young man I read that he had done this. But I could never find any article on it thereafter. Can you remember what Jimmy said after that? I think one of the reporters asked him why he broke his rackets. :)
 
#31
Thank you. I remember when I was a young man I read that he had done this. But I could never find any article on it thereafter. Can you remember what Jimmy said after that? I think one of the reporters asked him why he broke his rackets. :)
Just that he could not get the pace he wanted. Spots coverage was scant in the 1980's.
 
#32
Very cool! Instead of smashing them, too bad he didn't just toss them all into the crowd. Had you gotten one, it would probably be worth a lot of money today - one of the very earliest ProStaffs ever produced.

I understand he was under tremendous pressure from Wilson to continue using the ProStaff since the T-2000 was discontinued 2 years earlier so Wilson couldn't make any money selling those any longer, and of course they wanted maximum market exposure for the new Pro Staff. I heard that after Connors switched back to the T-2000 for good, Wilson canceled his contract. I assume that was when Connors appealed to the general public to send him any T-2000s that they were no longer using because he couldn't get any more from Wilson. :)
The T2000 he wanted were also not made any more. The fist models were welded differently than the later version, those are the ones he wanted
It was written that Connors had a shaft that had more flex than the stock Pro Staff
 
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