If Agassi didn't have the back issue in late 2005/through 2006 would he have played on or was retirement dead set for 2006?

Zardoz7/12

Hall of Fame
Andre had a solid 2005, finished in the top 10 once again surely he could have maintained a top 10 position during 2006 if he remained fit and motivated?

Was he always going to retire in 2006 or was the back issue the reason? I think he could have stayed on, even with his pains he was still very competitive.

 
Seemed pretty clear the back forced his hand. At that point not only was he still competitive, he made no bones about the fact he was playing for his foundation - even switching to Adidas since they and not Nike agreed to send $$$ that way. I'm quite sure if his body allowed, he would have kept going if only to be able to keep promoting his cause.

I doubt he could have pushed Big 3-type longevity but in that form I think he could have stayed Top 5-10 for another three years. Would have been nothing wrong with that.
 

big ted

Legend
his back was in really bad shape in 2006 (from reading his book)..
what i don’t get is if he hated tennis as much as he said he did why did he
try to hang on for so long .. wasn’t he 35/36 by then?..
i can understand why Connors & the big 3 played well into their 30s, becuz they
love the game (& want to break records i assume...) ... but Andre ?
i don't entirely get it unless he was exaggerating in his book ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
 
^ As Bigbadboaz stated he was playing for his foundation and used that for motivation. However, I thought with all his endorsement deals and various investments there were ways to get corporate sponsors to help his cause. Nonetheless, I think after he lost to Fed in the 2005 USO Final it was a good time to exit. It was obvious that Fed and Nadal were the dominant forces of the sport and the changing of the guard had taken place.
 

CyBorg

Legend
his back was in really bad shape in 2006 (from reading his book)..
what i don’t get is if he hated tennis as much as he said he did why did he
try to hang on for so long .. wasn’t he 35/36 by then?..
i can understand why Connors & the big 3 played well into their 30s, becuz they
love the game (& want to break records i assume...) ... but Andre ?
i don't entirely get it unless he was exaggerating in his book ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
I think staying busy kept Andre's bad habits in check.
 

FD3S

Hall of Fame
his back was in really bad shape in 2006 (from reading his book)..
what i don’t get is if he hated tennis as much as he said he did why did he
try to hang on for so long .. wasn’t he 35/36 by then?..
i can understand why Connors & the big 3 played well into their 30s, becuz they
love the game (& want to break records i assume...) ... but Andre ?
i don't entirely get it unless he was exaggerating in his book ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
There was a section in his book right before the big drug reveal/comeback effort where he noted that a lot of people hated their jobs but did them to the best of their ability anyway. Only Andre knows if he really hated tennis as much as he says he did, but I will say that if even half the Mike Agassi stories floating around are true it wouldn't surprise me if that were actually the case.
 
I don't understand how you could read the book and not understand the arc he went on, and how his relationship to the game changed. By the end he had clearly gotten to a much better place with respect to the sport.
 

big ted

Legend
I don't understand how you could read the book and not understand the arc he went on, and how his relationship to the game changed. By the end he had clearly gotten to a much better place with respect to the sport.
well from what i remember from the book he said he hates tennis, not he used to hate tennis
 

martinezownsclay

Professional
It is possible he plays on without his back in such disarray, but his back problems had been severe and building for awhile. I am amazed he managed to play well enough to be a major contender on 1 surface (hard courts) still in 2004 and 2005, play close to his former best and in some matches (some of the big US Open matches) better than his mid 90s performances where he got struck by nerves in some of those big matches vs Sampras, and really push peak Federer in both their 2004 and 2005 US Open matches. I am sure that is the reason he was useless on both clay and grass by then, after still being strong on both in 2003. I can't imagine there is a scenario he can last much longer.

Furthermore nobody played full time singles tennis until 40 back then. Just wasn't done. In fact most retired barely past 30 like Sampras, Graf, Seles, all did. I am not sure the mindset to play until 40 would have ever existed. He was married to Steffi Graf, they had 2 young growing childen, and his chances of ever winning another major, already slim, would just diminish as he got older, and Federer and others grew only stronger, even at full health.
 
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