If Nadal and/or Djokovic break Federer’s GS record does the record become meaningless?

WhiskeyEE

G.O.A.T.
I think Novak would deserve it. Nadal with his dozen+ clay open titles and vultured cakewalk USO's (for real, ridiculous luck doesn't even begin to describe it) would (will?) be bad for the game and bad for the sport.
 
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Lebsta

Rookie
Nadal is still 2 Slams away from passing Federer.
Djokovic is 5 Slams away from passing Federer.
There's still A LOT of work to be done yet for either of them to win the Slam race.
I'm not sure Djokovic is going to win another 5 Slams. I don't think I see it happening at this point at his age.
Nadal has the best shot and even then it seems to be getting really tough for him. He had to quit mid-way in 2 Slams in 2018 from injuries. And that US Open 2019 final took everything in his being to cross the finish line. The competition is getting tougher and tougher each season.
Let’s be honest the fives set final in US Open was more down to Rafa choking rather than it Medvedev being on the same level
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
Let’s be honest the fives set final in US Open was more down to Rafa choking rather than it Medvedev being on the same level
No, it wasn't. Nadal only failed an easy volley in the third set. From that moment on, Medvedev raised his level and started to defend like a wall and hit clean winners. He was more aggresive. The opponent also plays, and it is fair to recognize Medvedev amazing level in late 2019. Medvedev beat Djokovic in Cincinnati 2019 and destroyed Dimitrov in 3 at the USO 2019. He was in really great form.
 

Roddick85

Hall of Fame
I don't think it will change anything. It will always be an incredible feat regardless of who ends up with it. These 3 will most likely go down in history as the 3 best players to have played the game, so I'm at peace with any of them having the most slams.
 

ForehandRF

Hall of Fame
Olympics are equally relevant as ATP finals. I wonder if you will ever understand this.
Yeah right, a tournament held every 4 years, that received a mere 750 points in the past, it's comparable with the ATP Finals where only the top 8 participate (so no easy draws).False equivalence, you are just exposing your bias and we are getting nowhere.We are already offtopic anyway.
 
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Sport

G.O.A.T.
Yeah right, a tournament held every 4 years, that received a mere 750 points in the past, it's comparable with the ATP Finals where only the top 8 participate (so no easy draws).False equivalence, you are just exposing your bias and we are getting nowhere.We are already offtopic anyway.
The fact that it is played every 4 years adds to its relevance. It is more difficult to win a tournament which is only played every 4 years. Think about that. A player A can participate 16 times in the ATP finals. On the other hand, a player B can participate only 4 times in the Olympics. 16 > 4. There are far more chances to win the ATP finals, which neans the Olympics are extremelly relevant and difficult to win because of the minor number of editions.

To stablish an analogy, in football the World Cup is considered the most relevant tournament. A football World Cup is played once every four years, meaning it is the most difficult title to achieve.
 

ForehandRF

Hall of Fame
The fact that it is played every 4 years adds to its relevance. It is more difficult to win a tournament which is only played every 4 years. Think about that. A player A can participate 16 times in the ATP finals. On the other hand, a player B can participate only 4 times in the Olympics. 16 > 4. There are far more chances to win the ATP finals, which neans the Olympics are extremelly relevant and difficult to win because of the minor number of editions.

To stablish an analogy, in football the World Cup is considered the most relevant tournament. A football World Cup is played once every four years, meaning it is the most difficult title to achieve.
Tennis is an individual sport so you can't make an analogy with a team sport.Players can be injured (like Fed in 2016) or simply be out of form when the Olympics take place, it's a question of timming also.Guess who would have been the favorite had the Olympics taken place in 2011 or 2015 ? Also, the World Cup is part of football since forever so the situation is incomparable.Tennis is not even a traditional olympic sport.At this point I think we can agree to disagree.
 
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Sport

G.O.A.T.
Tennis is an individual sport so you can't make an analogy with a team sport.Players can be injured (like Fed in 2016) or simply be out of form when the Olympics take place, it's a question of timming also.Guess who would have been the favorite had the Olympics taken place in 2011 or 2015 ? Also, the World Cup is part of footaball since forever so the situation is incomparable.Tennis is not even a traditional olympic sport.At this point I think we can agree to disagree.
Olympics also include individual sports, so I do can make an analogy with football.
 

ibbi

Legend
If 3 men all playing at the same time amass all the titles for over a decade then it is safe to say that the record is already 'meaningless'. It does not matter who is in the lead. Context first, numbers second.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
If 3 men all playing at the same time amass all the titles for over a decade then it is safe to say that the record is already 'meaningless'. It does not matter who is in the lead. Context first, numbers second.
Whatever helps you sleep.
 

ChrisRF

Hall of Fame
If 3 men all playing at the same time amass all the titles for over a decade then it is safe to say that the record is already 'meaningless'. It does not matter who is in the lead. Context first, numbers second.
What? If the 3 best players of all time play in the same era, why shouldn’t it be important who comes out on top of them?

Also imagine how big their numbers would be if only 1 of them would have chosen football or be absent for another reason. The record would have been near 30 then.

Or imagine how many Slams Federer would have won in another era without Nadal/Djokovic, for example in the 90s. He would have dominated almost at will, against specialists on all courts.
 

Mike Sams

G.O.A.T.
Let’s be honest the fives set final in US Open was more down to Rafa choking rather than it Medvedev being on the same level
Medvedev had said that if he had lost the first set against Stan Wawrinka, he would've quit the match because of how physically worn down he was.
I'm pretty sure Medvedev's best level was a lot higher than those first 2 sets he showed against Nadal.
 

BringBackSV

Hall of Fame
If we are counting Finals, Fed has been to five RG Finals too. So Fed’s record at RG is the same as Nadal’s at AO, and we generally think of Fed as having been mostly a failure at RG.

Rafa has one Aussie title, Fed and Djok both have 6+. Rafa still has yet to win a WTF.

Their resumes are just more balanced. It is what it is. Everyone has to decide for himself whether that outweighs Rafa’s advantage on overall count.



1. If he had ten RGs and three Aussies, I think that would be “better”. As it is, only three of his Slams are on faster courts. He has as many Slams on slower courts as Djokovic does in total.

2. If we are evaluating these guys vs each other than record matters. Rafa has only one Win vs another Big 3 member at a Slam since 2014, coming this year v Fed at RG SF. Otherwise he has come up short against both of them for some time now and has been extremely fortunate to meet guys like Thiem and Anderson and Wawa in Finals on his best surfaces.

Whereas Fed and Djok basically had to face each other or Murray over the same time period.
Neither Fed nor Djoker have the perfectly balanced resume you believe is so important. Like Rafa, they both have a slam at which they "only" have one. With that said, Rafa has achieved at least 2 slams on each of the three majors surfaces, which is something your "well balanced resume" duo have failed to do.

If we are talking about slam totals though, if Novak and Fed are better on two of three slam surfaces, then that would make Rafa's level of difficulty even higher if he is to attain the slam record. I won't even mention all the slams he's missed along the way either.

With regards to the post 2014 Slam H2h, that's just a rather arbitrary starting point but I'll address it none the less. Fed and Rafa have played twice in a slam since 2014 and Roger has a 2-1 edge. He beat Rafa at his best event in Wimbledon and then also pulled out a close AO match that could have gone either way. His lone loss to Rafa over that time period occurred this year after Roger decided to start playing RG again.

As for Novak, I'll instead pick a different arbitrary starting point and say post 2016. This is reasonable enough given that Rafa was in a pretty big slump in 15-16. Also lucky for Novak that he didn't face Rafa during his own slump. So Novak is 2-0 during that period but that's nothing shocking given that Novak stylistically matches up well with Rafa. None the less, Rafa could easily have won the Wimbledon match in 18. The AO match was admittedly pretty pathetic from Nadal but it is Novak's best surface so, not sure what that says about their meeting up outside the AO. Djokovic has obviously managed not to have to play Rafa on his own best surface over this time period.

You think he was fortunate to come up against Thiem or Wawrinka at RG, WHAT? So a 3 time slam champion playing high level tennis and a consistent clay performer in Thiem are being dismissed as quality opposition? Then you go on to promote the notion that Murray was something special as an opponent in comparison? Seems like a pretty big stretch, Murray has never really made inroads against the big 3. Thiem has shown the ability to beat the big 3 at various events so he is hardly some pushover. It is not Rafa's issue if Thiem's best surface happens to be Rafa's also. Anderson is nothing special but he's a two time slam finalist so, nothing to scoff at in this era (how many players can say that at the moment?). I do remember Rafa having to deal with an in-form Delpo that year in the round prior also.

Lets not downplay the achievement for whomever gets the most slams. You are already coming up with excuses in case one of your preferred goat contenders fails in their attempt at getting the slam record. And Rafa is not getting 20 RGs, no idea why you think that might happen.
 
Sounds like a whole lotta coping there, bud.

Flash news: the world of tennis does not revolve around Federer’s GS record.

Wanting the Next gen to take over from the big 3 is like wanting to replace a Ferrari for a Toyota.

why would anyone want to watch significantly lower quality tennis?
 

Eren

Professional
OCO, Federer was Nadal pigeon for years; even dropping matches on grass to the Spaniard! Roger had success in the last couple seasons, but before that it was all about Fedal in representation alone! Djokovic has been Nadal's only true rival, defeating him on all surfaces; esp. the last few years rarely dropping a set on HC! :unsure:
Could you mention one match on grass besides Wimbledon 2008 that Federer lost to Nadal?
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
Neither Fed nor Djoker have the perfectly balanced resume you believe is so important. Like Rafa, they both have a slam at which they "only" have one. With that said, Rafa has achieved at least 2 slams on each of the three majors surfaces, which is something your "well balanced resume" duo have failed to do.

If we are talking about slam totals though, if Novak and Fed are better on two of three slam surfaces, then that would make Rafa's level of difficulty even higher if he is to attain the slam record. I won't even mention all the slams he's missed along the way either.

With regards to the post 2014 Slam H2h, that's just a rather arbitrary starting point but I'll address it none the less. Fed and Rafa have played twice in a slam since 2014 and Roger has a 2-1 edge. He beat Rafa at his best event in Wimbledon and then also pulled out a close AO match that could have gone either way. His lone loss to Rafa over that time period occurred this year after Roger decided to start playing RG again.

As for Novak, I'll instead pick a different arbitrary starting point and say post 2016. This is reasonable enough given that Rafa was in a pretty big slump in 15-16. Also lucky for Novak that he didn't face Rafa during his own slump. So Novak is 2-0 during that period but that's nothing shocking given that Novak stylistically matches up well with Rafa. None the less, Rafa could easily have won the Wimbledon match in 18. The AO match was admittedly pretty pathetic from Nadal but it is Novak's best surface so, not sure what that says about their meeting up outside the AO. Djokovic has obviously managed not to have to play Rafa on his own best surface over this time period.

You think he was fortunate to come up against Thiem or Wawrinka at RG, WHAT? So a 3 time slam champion playing high level tennis and a consistent clay performer in Thiem are being dismissed as quality opposition? Then you go on to promote the notion that Murray was something special as an opponent in comparison? Seems like a pretty big stretch, Murray has never really made inroads against the big 3. Thiem has shown the ability to beat the big 3 at various events so he is hardly some pushover. It is not Rafa's issue if Thiem's best surface happens to be Rafa's also. Anderson is nothing special but he's a two time slam finalist so, nothing to scoff at in this era (how many players can say that at the moment?). I do remember Rafa having to deal with an in-form Delpo that year in the round prior also.

Lets not downplay the achievement for whomever gets the most slams. You are already coming up with excuses in case one of your preferred goat contenders fails in their attempt at getting the slam record. And Rafa is not getting 20 RGs, no idea why you think that might happen.
I agree with this logico-methodological analysis. As you accurately point out, he was already preparing excuses, so in case Nadal achieves the Slam record, he can dismiss that historical achievement.

Fortunately, he is an exception. The big majority of Federer fans are true gentlemen, classy and educated posters that will not put excuses to dismiss the relevance of the Slam record.
 

Fiero425

Hall of Fame
Could you mention one match on grass besides Wimbledon 2008 that Federer lost to Nadal?
I guess once was enough to make it quite memorable; like it would have been for Federer to defeat Nadal in Paris! It never really happened after all's said and done, many times I didn't even wake up at 8 am just to watch another Nadal RG trophy hoist! Don't put me on the list of "haters;" just realistic after being initially impressed with Roger professionalism and early dominance! He did initially take advantage of a lame era after retirement of Sampras making it easier to win 3 of 4 majors 3 times in 4 years! That was unprecedented until Nadovic came along to see it's not impossible even when competing against one another! Nadal and Djokovic have proved they can dominate on all surfaces going up against Federer! Roger can't say the same; even with these last few surprising wins over his closest rivals! It's even hard to say Fed's the "grass goat" seeing as Nole's taken their 3 meetings in the final! Nuff said to just pull back a little with the defensiveness! Age can't be used as a crutch since he has beaten both of late, just not when it really counted in the last season aside the Wimbledon SF! :unsure:
 

swizzy

Hall of Fame
this topic is obviously trying to push some buttons. still, the premise is ridiculous since the 3 of them are gonna end up within a slam or 2 difference..and each accomplishment will be incredible in a vacuum and only more profound when considered together. sampras had the slam record and it seemed pretty safe at the time..and then it wasn't.. and now is taking a backseat to the greatness that followed. you would have to guess that whoever emerges from this race will keep it considerably longer than pete and possibly forever.... and if it were ever to be eclipsed it would never be described as meaningless
 

Sephiroth

Hall of Fame
Breaking the GS record right in front of Federer's face while he's still an active player would be a gazillion x more meaningful than Federer breaking Sampras' record who was never a moving target and retired eons ago, and a smaller number of GS titles to match.

Fedtаrds should be lucky Federer kept playing otherwise he would've already been surpassed.
 

MichaelNadal

Bionic Poster
Breaking the GS record right in front of Federer's face while he's still an active player would be a gazillion x more meaningful than Federer breaking Sampras' record who was never a moving target and retired eons ago, and a smaller number of GS titles to match.

Fedtаrds should be lucky Federer kept playing otherwise he would've already been surpassed.
This but don't call them anything foul. Maestronians :D
 

alexio

Hall of Fame
Fortunately, he is an exception.
not sure about the better player, it's very subjective term, different people could imply various definitions by that and everyone can debate this till we're blue in the face , but for sure both fed and djok are better all-rounders than nadal and will always be (until somehow nadal changes that in the years to come)..12-9-7 - number of slams won by big 3 participants outside their favourite slam (home sweet home)..this is not excuses but a cold hard facts, please don't forget it's not about goat race what i'm talking about here
 
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Rosstour

Legend
No, it isn't more balanced. You strategically forgot to mention Federer's lack of Olympic Gold in in singles which compensates Nadal's lack of ATP finals.
Strategically forgot? Maybe a bit of projection there man.

Olympic Games are every four years, WTF is every year and Rafa has had what, 15 chances to win and never has?

And Fed/Djoker have more balanced resumes. They have done better at their second-best and third-best Slams than Rafa has.

If Fed had 12 Wimbys, 4 Aussies, 2 US, and one French...we wouldn’t have an issue labeling him GrassGOAT and not much else. Rafa is open to the same perception.

If Rafa gets 21 slams he will be considered worldwide and by the ATP, the goat.
He already is IMO. It’s just a matter of time. But he has been crowned already. No one will ever forget Wimbledon 2008, and it doesn’t matter to most pundits that the balance of power changed post-2014.
 

California

Semi-Pro
I always felt Nadal both benefited and suffered on slow courts. Benefited in that he could defend like a wall. Suffered because he couldn't hit through the court as much with his big FH and BH. He probably would've had more success against Djokovic on much faster courts.
I generally like your posts but don't agree at all with this one. Nadal is a great, great player but he has benefited the most of the Big 3 with the slowing down of the courts and the homogenized surfaces. He is a slow court player by nature. His court positioning and big backswings are perfect for slow courts. His return positioning works on slow surfaces, if the courts are sped up he is in trouble. He won't be given the time to set up for his shots, his court positions will be exploited.

There is a reason why he hasn't won many indoor tournaments. He greatly benefited from the slowdown at Wimbledon. When the courts are fast he struggles. Djoker is much more adaptable IMO
 

Rosstour

Legend
I generally like your posts but don't agree at all with this one. Nadal is a great, great player but he has benefited the most of the Big 3 with the slowing down of the courts and the homogenized surfaces. He is a slow court player by nature. His court positioning and big backswings are perfect for slow courts. His return positioning works on slow surfaces, if the courts are sped up he is in trouble. He won't be given the time to set up for his shots, his court positions will be exploited.

There is a reason why he hasn't won many indoor tournaments. He greatly benefited from the slowdown at Wimbledon. When the courts are fast he struggles. Djoker is much more adaptable IMO
This is borne out by results.

Rafa has two Wimbys and one Aussie?

Djok has four and seven. And as many US titles as Rafa, right?

The guy you responded to said that Rafa would do better against Djokovic on fast hard courts...how did that work out at AO19?
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
Strategically forgot? Maybe a bit of projection there man.

Olympic Games are every four years, WTF is every year and Rafa has had what, 15 chances to win and never has?

And Fed/Djoker have more balanced resumes. They have done better at their second-best and third-best Slams than Rafa has.

If Fed had 12 Wimbys, 4 Aussies, 2 US, and one French...we wouldn’t have an issue labeling him GrassGOAT and not much else. Rafa is open to the same perception.

So no, no more balanced resume because Federer' lackfederef



He already is IMO. It’s just a matter of time. But he has been crowned already. No one will ever forget Wimbledon 2008, and it doesn’t matter to most pundits that the balance of power changed post-2014.
Again, the fact that it is played every four years makes it more difficult to achieve and so more relevant than other titles. ATP finals can be played 15-16 during a career, the Olympics can only be played 4-5 times during a career. Because of the limited number of editions, it is extremelly difficult to win the ATP finals.

Stablishing an analogy with football, in football the World Cup is considered to be the most relevant title precisely because it is only played once every four years. It makes it the most difficult title to achieve and so the most prestigious.

So no, no more balanced resume because Federer's lack of Olympic Gold in singles compensates Nadal's lack of ATP finals.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
not sure about the better player, it's very subjective term, different people could imply various definitions by that and everyone can debate this till we're blue in the face , but for sure both fed and djok are better all-rounders than nadal and will always be (until somehow nadal changes that in the years to come)..12-9-7 - number of slams won by big 3 participants outside their favourite slam (home sweet home)..this is not excuses but a cold hard facts, please don't forget it's not about goat race what i'm talking about here
OK, let us forget the GOAT race. Let us discuss specifically the claim that Nadal, even if he gets the Slam record, will be less "all-rounder" than Federer or Djokovic. Typically, there are two claims to defend this argument:

1. Slams distribution.

2. Less well-balanced indoor-outdoor results.

I will explain why none of these claims prove that Nadal is less all-rounder if he gets the Slam record.


1. Slams distribution: it is typically suggested that Nadal's resume is less well-balanced because he has won too many RG titles. 12 to be precise. But that is penalizing Nadal for being too dominant on his favorite surface, not for having his Slam titles less evenly distributed, which makes no sense.
For instance, Nadal achieved the Career Grand Slam (winning all 4 Grand Slams). Sampras never won Roland-Garros. It follows that Nadal has his Slams more evenly distributed by surface than Sampras. Nadal won more RG (12) than Sampras won WB (7) and it doesn't mean Nadal's Slam distribution is worse than Sampras' one only for being more dominant on his favorite Slam. Coming back to the Nadal-Fedovic comparison: Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface than both Federer and Djokovic. In effect, Nadal has won at least 2 Grand Slam titles on each surface (hard, grass and clay). Federer and Djokovic only won 1 Slam on clay. 2 Slams on each surface >>> 1 Slam on each surface. Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface, because 2 > 1.



2. Less balanced indoor-outdoor results: Federer and Djokoviv have won the ATP finals multiple times. Nadal doesn't. Federer and Djokovic have also won all the most relevant titles in both conditions outdoor-indoor. But it doesn't mean they are more all-around if Nadal gets the Slam record. Why? Because if Nadal gets the Slam record he would have better outdoor resume than both of them in outdoor conditions. Nadal has the most outdoor times in the history of the Open Era (82). If he gets the Slam record, he would be the best outdoor player of all time, since he would also be the only member of the Big 3 with 2 Slams on each surface (hard, grass and clay) and the Olympic Gold in singles. Now, how can Federer or Djokovic be more balanced if they are only better in one of the conditions (indoor)? To be better all-rounder they would need to be better both in outdoor conditions and indoor conditions, not only indoor conditions. In sum, if Nadal gets the Slam record he would not be a less "all-around" player than Federer or Djokovic.
 
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Mike Sams

G.O.A.T.
I generally like your posts but don't agree at all with this one. Nadal is a great, great player but he has benefited the most of the Big 3 with the slowing down of the courts and the homogenized surfaces. He is a slow court player by nature. His court positioning and big backswings are perfect for slow courts. His return positioning works on slow surfaces, if the courts are sped up he is in trouble. He won't be given the time to set up for his shots, his court positions will be exploited.

There is a reason why he hasn't won many indoor tournaments. He greatly benefited from the slowdown at Wimbledon. When the courts are fast he struggles. Djoker is much more adaptable IMO
That's true. It just seems at times when he's really trying to get through in a tight contest, he tries to ramp up the velocity on his shots and can't get it through the court. There have been times where he's actually tried to go for hail marys against Djokovic. I think set 4 at Wimbledon in 2011, he was going all out with the flat Inside out FHs and ended up netting or missing them. AO2012 final also was tough for him as it seemed he was basically playing himself in the later sets. Playing a guy who can defend all day and get everything back.
 

Mike Sams

G.O.A.T.
This is borne out by results.

Rafa has two Wimbys and one Aussie?

Djok has four and seven. And as many US titles as Rafa, right?

The guy you responded to said that Rafa would do better against Djokovic on fast hard courts...how did that work out at AO19?
Djokovic has 3 USOs to Nadal's 4. And Nadal beat Djokovic to win 2 of them. USO plays or played faster than AO.
 

TripleATeam

G.O.A.T.
OK, let us forget the GOAT race. Let us discuss specifically the claim that Nadal, even if he gets the Slam record, will be less "all-rounder" than Federer or Djokovic. Typically, there are two claims to defend this argument:

1. Slams distribution.

2. Less well-balanced indoor-outdoor results.

I will explain why none of these claims prove that Nadal is less all-rounder if he gets the Slam record.


1. Slams distribution: it is typically suggested that Nadal's resume is less well-balanced because he has won too many RG titles. 12 to be precise. But that is penalizing Nadal for being too dominant on his favorite surface, not for having his Slam titles less evenly distributed, which makes no sense.
For instance, Nadal achieved the Career Grand Slam (winning all 4 Grand Slams). Sampras never won Roland-Garros. It follows that Nadal has his Slams more evenly distributed by surface than Sampras. Nadal won more RG (12) than Sampras won WB (7) and it doesn't mean Nadal's Slam distribution is worse than Sampras' one only for being more dominant on his favorite Slam. Coming back to the Nadal-Fedovic comparison: Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface than both Federer and Djokovic. In effect, Nadal has won at least 2 Grand Slam titles on each surface (hard, grass and clay). Federer and Djokovic only won 1 Slam on clay. 2 Slams on each surface >>> 1 Slam on each surface. Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface, because 2 > 1.



2. Less balanced indoor-outdoor results. Federer and Djokoviv have won the ATP finals multiple times. Nadal doesn't. Federer and Djokovic have also won all the most relevant titles in both conditions outdoor-indoor. But it doesn't mean they are more all-around if Nadal gets the Slam record. Why? Because if Nadal gets the Slam record he would have better outdoor resume than both of them in outdoor conditions. Nadal has the most outdoor times in the history of the Open Era (82). If he gets the Slam record, he would be the best outdoor player of all time, since he would also be the only member of the Big 3 with 2 Slams on each surface (hard, grass and clay) and the Olympic Gold in singles. Now, how can Federer or Djokovic be more balanced if they are only better in one of the conditions (indoor)? To be better all-rounder they would need to be better both in outdoor conditions and indoor conditions, not only indoor conditions. In sum, if Nadal gets the Slam record he would not be a less "all-around" player than Federer or Djokovic.
Well, to respond to point #2 - you don't have to be better in all facets of something to be better all-around. You just have to be more consistent.

A player with 20 outdoor titles and 3 indoor is a worse all-around player than a player with 15 outdoor and 12 indoor titles. You're more of an "all-around" player if your titles on each surface are relatively close, and an all-around better player is just the better player when you take all surfaces into account.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Again, the fact that it is played every four years makes it more difficult to achieve and so more relevant than other titles. ATP finals can be played 15-16 during a career, the Olympics can only be played 4-5 times during a career. Because of the limited number of editions, it is extremelly difficult to win the ATP finals.
I assume you meant Olympics here, and I do concede that having them only every 4 years does add something to the mystique.

However, Rafa has had so many chances at WTF, and hasn't won even once? Not even in years like 2010, 2013, 2017, 2019 where he was far and away the best player? C'mon.

I'm not even super high on the WTF, but it's something that Fed has won six times, and Djok 5...and Rafa can't even muster one, despite being a better player than both of them? That's a stretch.

Sport said:
Stablishing an analogy with football, in football the World Cup is considered to be the most relevant title precisely because it is only played once every four years. It makes it the most difficult title to achieve and so the most prestigious.
1. That's an insufficient analogy. Football/soccer is a team sport, not an individual one. Golf is the nearest analogy.

2. Even within your soccer analogy, you've made World Cup = Olympics. The Olympics also feature soccer...why compare soccer World Cup to tennis Olympics when you can just compare soccer Olympics to tennis Olympics?

Sport said:
So no, no more balanced resume because Federer's lack of Olympic Gold in singles compensates Nadal's lack of ATP finals.
This isn't a Fed v Nadal thing at all. Djokovic has won 5 WTFs too. Lendl has 5, as does Sampras. Mac has 3. And Rafa doesn't even have one despite being better than all of them.

Sport said:
1. Slams distribution: it is typically suggested that Nadal's resume is less well-balanced because he has won too many RG titles. 12 to be precise. But that is penalizing Nadal for being too dominant on his favorite surface, not for having his Slam titles less evenly distributed, which makes no sense.
Of course it makes no sense when you phrase it that way. But that's not what the issue is.

The issue isn't that 12 RGs is too many; it's that ONE Aussie and 2 Wimbledons are not enough...not to support the narrative that Nadal dominated everyone, everywhere, and is the best player of all time.

65% of his Slam total comes from RG.

Novak's best major accounts for only around 45% of his total, and Fed's is even lower at 40%. Those are simply more balanced careers which rely less heavily on one Slam to pump up their counts.

You may not LIKE it, but it is true. Even without the WTF. And it only gets more lopsided/imbalanced if you do count that.

Not taking anything away from winning 12 freaking French Opens. But it's important to be realistic. He did a lot more winning there than his main rivals, and a lot less everywhere else. He hasn't won Aussie since 2009 and last won Wimbledon in 2010...since then it's all been RG and USO.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Djokovic has 3 USOs to Nadal's 4. And Nadal beat Djokovic to win 2 of them. USO plays or played faster than AO.
Right, I was only counting 4 Wimbledons for Djok. My mistake.

USO plays faster? Maybe at one time, but not for a while. Otherwise you'd see Fed getting further there instead of losing slugfests to DelPo and Kandyman and Millman.

It's no coincidence that Rafa has done his damage at RG and USO largely unchallenged, while Novak and Roger are fighting each other over Wimbledon and Australia. Clearly that has hurt them, and helped him.
 

Mike Sams

G.O.A.T.
Right, I was only counting 4 Wimbledons for Djok. My mistake.

USO plays faster? Maybe at one time, but not for a while. Otherwise you'd see Fed getting further there instead of losing slugfests to DelPo and Kandyman and Millman.

It's no coincidence that Rafa has done his damage at RG and USO largely unchallenged, while Novak and Roger are fighting each other over Wimbledon and Australia. Clearly that has hurt them, and helped him.
Good points. It seems the season is getting taxing for Federer at his age and he seems to be worn down by autumn nowadays. Everything after Wimby was a struggle this season other than Basel. Even Nadal has struggled a lot in parts, especially in the autumn hardcourt swing. So we can't just assume that Nadal benefits always. 2018 is one example of when he was worn out. The interesting thing is that at the U.S Open, Del Potro is 4-1 against Fedal, having beaten them both twice each.
 

Rosstour

Legend
Good points. It seems the season is getting taxing for Federer at his age and he seems to be worn down by autumn nowadays. Everything after Wimby was a struggle this season other than Basel. Even Nadal has struggled a lot in parts, especially in the autumn hardcourt swing. So we can't just assume that Nadal benefits always. 2018 is one example of when he was worn out. The interesting thing is that at the U.S Open, Del Potro is 4-1 against Fedal, having beaten them both twice each.
Thanks. Nadal doesn't "benefit always" but the tour is definitely favorable to him when you look at all the points paid out by the clay season. The guy feasts on his favorite surface, then slows down/gets injured for practically the rest of the year outside of making a push at USO, and is still in the mix for #1 every year despite being too worn down to ever win a WTF.

On top of having 3 M1000s and 1 500 in the 2 months leading to RG, the other Slams were slowed down right before/as he arrived on the scene.

Getting back to Federer and age re: the USO, imagine if Fed could play 3 M1000s and a 500 all on grass to tune-up and build rankings/seeding for Wimbledon? Think about how much less worn-down he would be for the US, and how much easier it would be for him to challenge for YE #1.

I know all this wasn't done on purpose, but the addition of the roof at USO has created a sweat lodge down there on the court, and that helps Rafa yet again. No coincidence IMO that the roof was first used in 2016, and Rafa has won 2 out of the 3 years he has played there since then (IMO). Meanwhile Fed's results there have been notably worse than the 3 or 4 years before his absence in 2016. The court has changed so much w/the roof that it sent their fortunes there in opposite directions.
 

ForehandRF

Hall of Fame
Djokovic has 3 USOs to Nadal's 4. And Nadal beat Djokovic to win 2 of them. USO plays or played faster than AO.
Those days when the USO played faster than the AO are long gone.In fact in the last few years, especially since the roof was installed on Arthur Ashe, USO has been at it's slowest but the AO on the other hand is faster than pre 2016/2015.IMO the USO has been different post 2010, only 2014 being the exception.
 

weakera

G.O.A.T.
Thanks. Nadal doesn't "benefit always" but the tour is definitely favorable to him when you look at all the points paid out by the clay season. The guy feasts on his favorite surface, then slows down/gets injured for practically the rest of the year outside of making a push at USO, and is still in the mix for #1 every year despite being too worn down to ever win a WTF.

On top of having 3 M1000s and 1 500 in the 2 months leading to RG, the other Slams were slowed down right before/as he arrived on the scene.

Getting back to Federer and age re: the USO, imagine if Fed could play 3 M1000s and a 500 all on grass to tune-up and build rankings/seeding for Wimbledon? Think about how much less worn-down he would be for the US, and how much easier it would be for him to challenge for YE #1.

I know all this wasn't done on purpose, but the addition of the roof at USO has created a sweat lodge down there on the court, and that helps Rafa yet again. No coincidence IMO that the roof was first used in 2016, and Rafa has won 2 out of the 3 years he has played there since then (IMO). Meanwhile Fed's results there have been notably worse than the 3 or 4 years before his absence in 2016. The court has changed so much w/the roof that it sent their fortunes there in opposite directions.
The roof helps Rafa? Lol. What a complete nonsense post. From 2010-2014, Rafa won twice, made one final and missed two US Open's. 2015-2016 was the worst tennis of Rafa's career. Then from 2017-2019 we have two victories and a semi-final. So in reality, Rafa has been dominating when he shows up to the US Open for 10 years. If we're absolving 2015-2016 (obviously those years count, they are just a huge outlier period in Rafa's career in terms of his level/capability), in his last 6 US Open tourneys he has won 4 times in addition to a final and a semi. And 2008-2009 he made two semis.

Rafa is a US Open legend, plain and simple.
 

alexio

Hall of Fame
OK, let us forget the GOAT race. Let us discuss specifically the claim that Nadal, even if he gets the Slam record, will be less "all-rounder" than Federer or Djokovic. Typically, there are two claims to defend this argument:

I will explain why none of these claims prove that Nadal is less all-rounder if he gets the Slam record.


1. Slams distribution: it is typically suggested that Nadal's resume is less well-balanced because he has won too many RG titles. 12 to be precise. But that is penalizing Nadal for being too dominant on his favorite surface, not for having his Slam titles less evenly distributed, which makes no sense.
. Coming back to the Nadal-Fedovic comparison: Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface than both Federer and Djokovic. In effect, Nadal has won at least 2 Grand Slam titles on each surface (hard, grass and clay). Federer and Djokovic only won 1 Slam on clay. 2 Slams on each surface >>> 1 Slam on each surface. Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface, because 2 > 1.
that doesn't sound very convincing.. 1) noboby penalizing him about winning titles there(12 or 9), point was about how much he won outside of that..2) the funny thing how you mixing up two terms because it suits your agenda pretty well.. saying about slams dustribution but then it's about surface distribution, this is lame argumentaion-surface argument and that;'s why: he could have just 2 or 3 US titles without any AO titles, in this case it's also 2 surfaces > 1 surface (for fed and djok).. following your logic, it still would be better well-balanced resume(better all-rounder) just because 2 surfaces > 1 surface, but that's not true since everyone knows it's only about titles not surfaces.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
that doesn't sound very convincing.. 1) noboby penalizing him about winning titles there(12 or 9), point was about how much he won outside of that..2) the funny thing how you mixing up two terms because it suits your agenda pretty well.. saying about slams dustribution but then it's about surface distribution, this is lame argumentaion-surface argument and that;'s why: he could have just 2 or 3 US titles without any AO titles, in this case it's also 2 surfaces > 1 surface (for fed and djok).. following your logic, it still would be better well-balanced resume(better all-rounder) just because 2 surfaces > 1 surface, but that's not true since everyone knows it's only about titles not surfaces.
You are right, I said Grand Slam titles distribution by surface. There is no contradiction in considering it.
 

Sport

G.O.A.T.
I assume you meant Olympics here, and I do concede that having them only every 4 years does add something to the mystique.

However, Rafa has had so many chances at WTF, and hasn't won even once? Not even in years like 2010, 2013, 2017, 2019 where he was far and away the best player? C'mon.

I'm not even super high on the WTF, but it's something that Fed has won six times, and Djok 5...and Rafa can't even muster one, despite being a better player than both of them? That's a stretch.



1. That's an insufficient analogy. Football/soccer is a team sport, not an individual one. Golf is the nearest analogy.

2. Even within your soccer analogy, you've made World Cup = Olympics. The Olympics also feature soccer...why compare soccer World Cup to tennis Olympics when you can just compare soccer Olympics to tennis Olympics?



This isn't a Fed v Nadal thing at all. Djokovic has won 5 WTFs too. Lendl has 5, as does Sampras. Mac has 3. And Rafa doesn't even have one despite being better than all of them.



Of course it makes no sense when you phrase it that way. But that's not what the issue is.

The issue isn't that 12 RGs is too many; it's that ONE Aussie and 2 Wimbledons are not enough...not to support the narrative that Nadal dominated everyone, everywhere, and is the best player of all time.

65% of his Slam total comes from RG.

Novak's best major accounts for only around 45% of his total, and Fed's is even lower at 40%. Those are simply more balanced careers which rely less heavily on one Slam to pump up their counts.

You may not LIKE it, but it is true. Even without the WTF. And it only gets more lopsided/imbalanced if you do count that.

Not taking anything away from winning 12 freaking French Opens. But it's important to be realistic. He did a lot more winning there than his main rivals, and a lot less everywhere else. He hasn't won Aussie since 2009 and last won Wimbledon in 2010...since then it's all been RG and USO.
? Federer only has 1 Slam on clay. Nadal has won at least 2 Slams on each surface (hard, grass and clay). So Nadal has his Slam titles more evenly distributed by surface, because 2 Slams on each surface >>> 1 Slam on each surface.

Also, the fact that 65% of Nadal's Slams come from clay says nothing nagative about his Slams' distribution by surface, it only says that he dominated a lot at RG. Sampras won 50% of his Slams on grass. Following your logic (considering the highest winning percetage at one Slam surface as indicative of bad distribution), Sampras would have better Slams' distribution by surface than Nadal. But he doesn't. Sampras has his Slams less evenly distributed by surface than Nadal. Why? Because we need to look at the worst surface percentage. Sampras won 0% of his Slams on clay. Federer only won 5% of his Slams on clay. Nadal doesn't have such a low winning percentage on any Slam surface. Nadal has won 10% of his Slams on grass and 26% of his Slams on hard.

No one said that Nadal dominated everyone and everywhere. No one has. Nadal is only human and, like any other all-time great, his resume is not perfect.
 
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Sport

G.O.A.T.
Well, to respond to point #2 - you don't have to be better in all facets of something to be better all-around. You just have to be more consistent.

A player with 20 outdoor titles and 3 indoor is a worse all-around player than a player with 15 outdoor and 12 indoor titles. You're more of an "all-around" player if your titles on each surface are relatively close, and an all-around better player is just the better player when you take all surfaces into account.
Nor did I say that. I said being better in both of the main conditions (outdoor-indoor). Federer is, right now, better than Nadal both in outdoor (more Slam titles) and indoor (6 ATP finals), so he can be considered more all-around than Nadal. It doesn't mean that "Federer is better in all facets" (he is not better than Nadal in the Canadian Open for instance). It only means that Federer is better both in outdoor and indoor, and so more all-around as of now.

Djokovic is certainly better than Nadal on indoor conditions (5 ATP finals). But he is not better than Nadal in outdoor conditions (Nadal has 3 more Slams, the Olympic Gold in singles, more Masters 1000, more overall titles in outdoor, etc). It follows that Djokovic is not more all-around than Nadal.

I apply the same criterion to all cases, even when it does not favor Nadal. For instance, Sampras is better on indoor (5 ATP finals) than Nadal. Subsequently, Nadal is not more all-around overall than Sampras. He can be considered more all-around in outdoor conditions, but not overall, because he is only better than Sampras in outdoor conditions.

"A player with 20 outdoor titles and 3 indoor is a worse all-around player than a player with 15 outdoor and 12 indoor titles." Player B is still not more all-around than player A. Player B is only better than player A on indoor. To be better all-around overall, he should better both on indoor and outdoor, not only indoor.

I can also make an extreme example to try to "dismiss" your thesis that it is not necessary to be better both on indoor and outdoor:

A player A with 5 outdoor titles and 4 indoor titles is not a more all-around player than a player B with 16 outdoor titles and 2 indoor titles. Why? Because he is only better on indoor, but not in outdoor.
 
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