If/when Federer is overtaken in slams, will he still be the GOAT?

Will he or not?

  • yes

    Votes: 35 27.6%
  • no

    Votes: 53 41.7%
  • it depends

    Votes: 39 30.7%

  • Total voters
    127
If Djokovic was to surpass Federer GS tally, then I would have to say he has a very strong case to be considered GOAT, and deservedly so...but if Nadal does it without improving his WTF abysmal record and by just piling on more RG titles, then I would say definitely not.
Either way, the way Federer plays the game is what makes him the best in most people's eyes and that will never change
 
Lol at people voting "It depends".

Every time a Nadal or Djokovic fan claims their favorite player to be the GOAT, Federer fans run to remember the number 20, the Grand Slam count.

But if Federer is surpassed, then the Grand Slam count is no longer relevant. What a double standard. They change the GOAT criteria just to suit Federer.

Also, no one is gonna consider Federer as the GOAT if Nadal and/or Djokovic surpass him. How can Federer be the GOAT with less Grand Slams than Nadal/Djokovic and a losing H2H against them? The age excuse is ridiculous, when prime Federer has lost at age 26 at Wimbledon 2008 or age 27 at the Australian Open 2009. Djokovic also leads Federer 4-2 in Grand Slams between 2010 and 2012, and Federer was in good form those years.
There really isn't a GOAT and never will be, but slams are considered the main criteria.

I do agree with you it's a double standard the way Fed fans hold the 20 slams at the benchmark but want to consider other things in the case of someone overtaking that. However that's the sort of double standard you often employ to suit Nadal so now perhaps you can see how frustrating this is.

Ps, in 2010-2012 Federer was 29-31 and thus while in reasonable form, past prime. He's played more matches in Djokovic's prime than in his. You make age excuses for Nadal, so it's a double standard. since Nadal was 29 he's 0-3 in slams vs Djokovic on 3 different surfaces and Djokovic is only 1 year younger rather than 6, so it's not exactly like he was facing prime Djokovic like Federer was.
 
There is no GOAT, but if Federer gets surpassed in slams I think he will no longer be widely considered the GOAT. Some people will still say he is but will be a minority.

The only scenario where I see it being a bit of a tricky one, is if Nadal surpasses him with only RG titles from now on. Then I can see the argument that Nadal is the clay GOAT and Federer the overall GOAT being held by a reasonable amount of people.

But really, what does it matter? the title of GOAT is just an opinion, people still maintain it's Laver or Gonzales, so people can say whatever they like. Just enjoy the tennis, and whoever is your GOAT, good for you.
 
There is no GOAT, but if Federer gets surpassed in slams I think he will no longer be widely considered the GOAT. Some people will still say he is but will be a minority.

The only scenario where I see it being a bit of a tricky one, is if Nadal surpasses him with only RG titles from now on. Then I can see the argument that Nadal is the clay GOAT and Federer the overall GOAT being held by a reasonable amount of people.

But really, what does it matter? the title of GOAT is just an opinion, people still maintain it's Laver or Gonzales, so people can say whatever they like. Just enjoy the tennis, and whoever is your GOAT, good for you.
GOAT has become such an annoyingly overly done topic in tennis I am practically sick of the word.
 
Nole doesn’t need to reach 20 slams

If he wins one more FO, two more USO, and one more WTF he will be ahead of Fred in 2, arguably three, of the Slams, and will likely be ahead in time at number 1 as well. He will also be the HC Goat. Fed will be ahead of Nole only at Wimbledon and a couple of masters.

Hard, but doable.
 
There really isn't a GOAT and never will be, but slams are considered the main criteria.

I do agree with you it's a double standard the way Fed fans hold the 20 slams at the benchmark but want to consider other things in the case of someone overtaking that. However that's the sort of double standard you often employ to suit Nadal so now perhaps you can see how frustrating this is.

Ps, in 2010-2012 Federer was 29-31 and thus while in reasonable form, past prime. He's played more matches in Djokovic's prime than in his. You make age excuses for Nadal, so it's a double standard. since Nadal was 29 he's 0-3 in slams vs Djokovic on 3 different surfaces and Djokovic is only 1 year younger rather than 6, so it's not exactly like he was facing prime Djokovic like Federer was.
2010-2012 Federer was 29-30 in all his Grand Slam matches against Djokovic (USO 2010, AO 2011, RG 2011, USO 2011, RG 2012, WB 2012). In none of these matches was Mr. Federer 31 years old. 29-30 is not the same as 35.
 
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2010-2012 Federer was 29-30 in all his Grand Slam matches against Djokovic (USO 2010, RG 2011, USO 2011, RG 2012). In none of these matches was Mr. Federer 31 years old. 29-30 is not the same as 35.
He was a couple of months from 31 in 2012, but he did win that match so probably doesn't count that much, the ones he lost were 29-30 yes that's true. But that has been said by you to be non prime (slightly past) prime. Nadal has not yet scored a win in a slam vs Djokovic past 29, not even on clay (lost on all surfaces) and was playing an older Djokovic as well. His closeness in age means for him his prime age is virtually the same as Djokovic so virtually no excuse can be made for him, so would you say there is no age excuse for him being 0-3 or he has started to slip as he's gotten older?
 
Well,I'll just say "it depends". Federer has been the biggest star in the history of the sport,tennis' MJ. Don't think for a minute that this doesn't factor into it. I have a hard time seeing him just being pushed to one side. I could see it being a split,I can never see it being a unanimous thing. Hell,even now it's not unanimous when Fed still has a large lead in slams,titles and weeks at #1...
 
Well,I'll just say "it depends". Federer has been the biggest star in the history of the sport,tennis' MJ. Don't think for a minute that this doesn't factor into it. I have a hard time seeing him just being pushed to one side. I could see it being a split,I can never see it being a unanimous thing. Hell,even now it's not unanimous when Fed still has a large lead in slams,titles and weeks at #1...
This is the correct answer. It's never going to be unanimous and it's not even unanimous now.

Nadal fans especially are kidding themselves though if they think a majority of people are going to suddenly say Nadal is the best if he just keeps winning on clay long enough to get 20-21 slams and does nothing else new or different. Limping on to break the slam count by 1, doing the same thing he's always done, with still 0 WTF titles just ain't gonna cut it. It just isn't. His fans will say he's done it of course, but there's not going to be the massive shift in consensus that he'd need to be in the historical position that Federer is now in. It would be much more disputed than it currently is, is basically what I'm saying. If he breaks the record by several and shows something different, like more Wimbledon titles or, finally, a WTF win, then that obviously changes things.

Djokovic however might have a shot a becoming a reasonable consensus GOAT if he breaks more of Fed's records including the slam one, which he just may do. The #1 record and WTF record in particular. If he can break all three and show some of Fed's longevity then that's going to persuade many, many people. Myself included.
 
I've also never held slam number as the one and only benchmark. That's a silly position as there are many other events in tennis and if they count for nothing then why do they play them? The obvious answer is that they do count. Duh.

A lot of Fed fans mention the slam count first up as it's a quick way to shut down arguments for other players who have clearly inferior records. Fed has several more slams than the others and a better resume outside of the slams too, so just saying "talk to me when they get 21" is a quick and easy way to remind others to stay in their lane. :D
 
Me too, it's lost all meaning. It's like people can't bare to think that there might not be a best player ever.
I also dont like it since it involve comparing and tearing down players who are all in their own right just amazing. Be it on the mens side with Federer, Laver, Nadal, Djokovic, Sampras or the womens with people like Serena, Navratilova, Evert, Court, Graf. The argument to prove so and so are the GOAT always involve lots of tearing down of all others. And with players of that calibre it is pretty ridiculous and disrespectful.
 

ABCD

Hall of Fame
Oh, so now Federer is a bad man as well as a sub-standard tennis player, according to you?
You wrongly interpreted my posts. According to me Federer is:

1) One of the best tennis players that ever lived, certainly top 3-5. He is just not as good as Djokovic.

2) I don't know what kind of man is Federer, but his behavior is not as perfect as claimed by another poster.
 
I think it depends on if it is Djokovic or Nadal that equals or surpassed Federers slam count. If Djokovic does then I am comfortable giving the mantle to him as he has a similar wtf count and a greater count at masters 1000 compared to federer. If Nadal its a bit more complicated especially if Rafa doesn’t win the wtf. Federer’s 6 Wtf’s are not nothing and they need to be taken into account. They represent 29 victories over players in the top 8 - no small thing.
 

mxmx

Professional
I think Djokovic would likely be considered superior with the same number of slams, let alone more. Most of his other stats would be superior by that point. He would clearly be ahead in all #1 ranking related stats, well ahead in Masters, probably atleast tied in WTF titles. Djokovic would need only the same number, maybe even 1 less in some scenarios.

Nadal is a tougher call. It depends how much people start focusing on the head to head, and how much people care about the clay imbalance.
But part of the reason for my question is whether people will actually start saying and admitting this...that Djokovic is now all of a sudden the GOAT. Commentators who always said (or implied) without any doubt that Federer is the greatest player to ever play the game (when Djokovic and Nadal was on courts or even on the other side against Federer). Its not like Nadal or Djokovic were retired...no...they still had the shot but everyone had to jump on the Federer wagon as soon as they possibly could.
 
I mean Federer had the highest peak ever and he was able to sustain it for several years. For me, he is the GOAT even if Novak gets to 30 slams in this pathetic era
federer has more GS titles and weeks as no1 than nole because he has played longer time at the top level because he is 6 years older. His records are related to a long-term high carer. novaks records are based on the dominance of the whole tour and on all surfaces when he is on top.

so if federer has the highest peak ever, why doesn't he has:

- The best year in open era (like djokovic w2015-rg2016)?
- the best ATP season (like djokovic 2015)?
- points record, (like djokovic 16,950)?
- 4 slams in a row, (like djokovic)?
- positive h2h against all big4 (like djokovic)?
- the best ELO rating (like djokovic)?
- Longer streak wins than novak (41 vs 43)?
- won more than 7 titles in a row (once 7 vs novak once 7 + DC final and once 7)?
- better W-L% than novak (82% vs 82.8%)?
- better W-L% vs top10 than novak (65.2% vs 68.8%)?
- dominated the entire tour (all opponents) and all surfaces when he was at the top (as novak did)?
 
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federer has more GS titles and weeks as no1 than nole because he has played longer time at the top level because he is 6 years older. His records are related to a long-term high carer. novaks records are based on the dominance of the whole tour and on all surfaces when he is on top.

so if federer has the highest peak ever, why doesn't he has:

- The best year in open era (like djokovic w2015-rg2016)?
- the best ATP season (like djokovic 2015)?
- points record, (like djokovic 16,950)?
- 4 slams in a row, (like djokovic)?
- positive h2h against all big4 (like djokovic)?
- the best ELO rating (like djokovic)?
- Longer streak wins than novak (41 vs 43)?
- won more than 7 titles in a row (once 7 vs novak once 7 + DC final and once 7)?
- better W-L% than novak (82% vs 82.8%)?
- better W-L% vs top10 than novak (65.2% vs 68.8%)?
- dominated the entire tour (all opponents) and all surfaces when he was at the top (as novak did)?
4 of your first listings are the same thing.
If Novak was so dominant then why is his consecutive weeks as #1 basically half of Fed's?
 
4 of your first listings are the same thing.
If Novak was so dominant then why is his consecutive weeks as #1 basically half of Fed's?
it is not the same thing. half 2015 + half 2016 is not the same like whole 2015. the highest peak doas not need to be several years. ATP raitings circulate in one year periods. and nole had the best year and the best season in atp history and did it in big4 era. federer not, so competition! federer never had (no year) dominated the entire tour, all oponents and all surfaces like novak did in 2015 and in period W2015-RG2016!
 
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mxmx

Professional
Federer is the goat not because of titles, match wins and numbers. The way he behave himself, both in and outside the court. The way he wins his matches. The never ending joy of his to play the game and compete. Federer just has the charisma to be the greatest player.
Djokovic and Nadal as good as they are, are beyond the point at which they could be considered better than Roger. No amount of titles could change that.

Perfect example is the kid at Us Open 17 who asked Roger " why are you the goat " . Thr way he handled that is just pure class
Surely it's not a popularity contest though?
 

mxmx

Professional
8/20 of Federer's slams are at Wimbledon e.g. 40% e.g. not most.

The FO is indeed as relevant as any slam but there's certainly more balance to Federer/Djokovic's resume which arguably counts for quite a bit when talking about the Greatest of all Time rather than just the Greatest on Clay.
It's probably harder to win wimbledon...Sampras and others has set aside other grand slams to focus on wimbledon...
 

mxmx

Professional
I mean Federer had the highest peak ever and he was able to sustain it for several years. For me, he is the GOAT even if Novak gets to 30 slams in this pathetic era
I mean Sampras had the highest peak ever and he was able to sustain it for several years. For me, he is the GOAT even if Federer gets to 30 slams in this pathetic era

See the problem? I actually (to some degree) believe what I just stated.
 
- The best year in open era (like djokovic w2015-rg2016)?
Novak played more masters, well done but he also burned out quicker because of it, so Fedr is the wisest in the end, eh? So you can't have the best four-year stretch and the best single-year stretch together because it's too much, good thing Fed has the former. ;)

- the best ATP season (like djokovic 2015)?
- points record, (like djokovic 16,950)?
McEnroe had the most dominant season in 1984, while Laver won the CYGS in 1969. Those are the best. Djokovic's best *was* a bit more prolific than Federer's because he played more masters, see above.

- 4 slams in a row
Nadal at RG.

- positive h2h against all big4 (like djokovic)?
Age.

- the best ELO rating (like djokovic)?
Tour consistency. Not under control and not a direct measure of competitiveness.

- Longer streak wins than novak (41 vs 43)?
Good one, but having 2 more wins is not exactly a superior argument. What are Djokovic's best streaks on HC and grass?

- won more than 7 titles in a row (once 7 vs novak once 7 + DC final and once 7)?
This is a copy of the previous one.

- better W-L% than novak (82% vs 82.8%)?
Slow start (more early bad seasons).

- better W-L% vs top10 than novak (65.2% vs 68.8%)?
Haha, a win is a win irrespective of opponent ranking. See above.

- dominated the entire tour (all opponents) and all surfaces when he was at the top (as novak did)?
Nadal on clay / RG.
 

NatF

Bionic Poster
It's probably harder to win wimbledon...Sampras and others has set aside other grand slams to focus on wimbledon...
More great players over the years have prioritised Wimbledon, whether it's harder to win in an absolute sense I don't know e.g. is it harder to develop the skills to be successful on grass? Does the nature of grass court tennis make it harder to win matches against the field?
 
Novak played more masters, well done but he also burned out quicker because of it, so Fedr is the wisest in the end, eh? So you can't have the best four-year stretch and the best single-year stretch together because it's too much, good thing Fed has the former. ;)
We are talking about the highest peak not career. novak has time for the second.

McEnroe had the most dominant season in 1984, while Laver won the CYGS in 1969. Those are the best. Djokovic's best *was* a bit more prolific than Federer's because he played more masters, see above.

first of all we are talking about novak vs federer, and secondly, novak has the best ATP season anyway. 3 slams + F, WTF and 6 masters (record) and 16,585 points (record for the season). Laver's 1969 was a transition between Amateurs and Open Era, see for example, his way to AUS's title. and that was before ATP (and hard cord surface) was established anyway.

Nadal at RG.

so? nadal is still active and was it in 2015 and 2016 too!

Age.

age goes in both directions. one is too young another too old. federer always had negative h2h with 2 of 3 big4! first rafa and muzza and rafa and nole after that.

Tour consistency. Not under control and not a direct measure of competitiveness.

read about ELO rating.

Good one, but having 2 more wins is not exactly a superior argument. What are Djokovic's best streaks on HC and grass?

This is a copy of the previous one.

but nole had 2 streaks of 7+ tournaments vs feds only 1!

Slow start (more early bad seasons).

Haha, a win is a win irrespective of opponent ranking. See above.

haha ... not really, it's much harder and more prestigious to defeat top10 players than the top100 +. That's what sets big champions apart.

Nadal on clay / RG.

again, nadal is still active and was it in 2015 and 2016 too!
nadal lost in RG against soderling in 2009. federer was YE # 1 then. but did almost nothing on HC and failed to dominate all surfaces anyway.
 
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We are talking about the highest peak not career. novak has time for the second.


Djokovic played more masters in his best season too, that's why I referred to. Good job still making all 8 finals, was on the ropes a couple times.

first of all we are talking about novak vs federer, and secondly, novak has the best ATP season anyway. 3 slams + F, WTF and 6 masters (record) and 16,585 points (record for the season). Laver's 1969 was a transition between Amateurs and Open Era, see for example, his way to AUS's title. and that was before ATP (and hard cord surface) was established anyway.
I see him beating peak Tony Roche in a 90-game that lasted over four hours. That alone makes it tougher than some 128-draw slams.

so? nadal is still active and was it in 2015 and 2016 too!
Um, he withdrew from 2016 RG with a bad wrist, so except for the journeymen he beat in the first two rounds, it's like he never played; didn't actually get beaten by anyone.

Age.

age goes in both directions. one is too young another too old. federer always had negative h2h with 2 of 3 big4! first rafa and muzza and rafa and nole after that.
They played more matches with Federer 'too old' than Djokovic 'too young'. Nadal H2H is a separate issue, Murray's was never relevant seeing as Federer is 5-1 against him in GS.

haha ... not really, it's much harder and more prestigious to defeat top10 players than the top100 +. That's what sets big champions apart.
The champions are those who win, no matter the ranking. It's annoying to have a Slam champ with no top 20 wins for the tournament, but that's still much better than losing to an unseeded player.

again, so? nadal is still active and was it in 2015 and 2016 too!
2015dull 1-2 against Fognini on clay, oh yeah.
 
federer was 2-4 against refa in his best season, 2006! and 0-1 against muzza too! and we talk abouth 2015 (not 2016) like the best season, year that nole did beat rafa in RG! and he had most big titles and most points in all of 3 surfaces! and positive h2h against all major oponents.

fed could never dominate the whole tour and all surfaces. not even in his best year / season (2006). unlike novak 2015-rg2016. in his best years (2011, 2015-16), novak had two 7-0 streaks including clay vs rafa.
 
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Lew II

Hall of Fame
Federer is one of the GOATs now, but not the clear GOAT.

- Slam results
- outside Slams results
- competition

Djokovic is ahead of Federer in 2 of these 3 criterias.
 
federer has more GS titles and weeks as no1 than nole because he has played longer time at the top level because he is 6 years older. His records are related to a long-term high carer. novaks records are based on the dominance of the whole tour and on all surfaces when he is on top.

so if federer has the highest peak ever, why doesn't he has:

- The best year in open era (like djokovic w2015-rg2016)?
- the best ATP season (like djokovic 2015)?
- points record, (like djokovic 16,950)?
- 4 slams in a row, (like djokovic)?
- positive h2h against all big4 (like djokovic)?
- the best ELO rating (like djokovic)?
- Longer streak wins than novak (41 vs 43)?
- won more than 7 titles in a row (once 7 vs novak once 7 + DC final and once 7)?
- better W-L% than novak (82% vs 82.8%)?
- better W-L% vs top10 than novak (65.2% vs 68.8%)?
- dominated the entire tour (all opponents) and all surfaces when he was at the top (as novak did)?
Half of that is literally a case of having Murray in a RG final rather than Nadal and half of those aren’t related to peak level.
 
Federer is one of the GOATs now, but not the clear GOAT.

- Slam results
- outside Slams results
- competition

Djokovic is ahead of Federer in 2 of these 3 criterias.
Federer is ahead in top 2 of these.

6 masters doesn’t compensate for like 23 additional titles or whatever it is + 1 YEC.

Competition is about equal with Nole having the weakest era so far since 2014. If it goes on til 2020 Nole is undoubtedly the weak era king.
 
federer was 2-4 against refa in his best season, 2006! and 0-1 against muzza too! and we talk abouth 2015 (not 2016) like the best season, year that nole did beat rafa in RG! and he had most big titles and most points in all of 3 surfaces! and positive h2h against all major oponents.

fed could never dominate the whole tour and all surfaces. not even in his best year / season (2006). unlike novak 2015-rg2016. in his best years (2011, 2015-16), novak had two 7-0 streaks including clay vs rafa.
Yeah because beating Murray at RG is even remotely comparable to 05-07 Nadal :laughing: he beat a crap version of Nadal then lost to Fed’s pigeon Wawrinka LOL

Nole is the weak era king. Majority of slams won vs old Fed, washed up Nadal and Mauresmo Murray. Weakest era of all time.
 

Lew II

Hall of Fame
Federer is ahead in top 2 of these.

6 masters doesn’t compensate for like 23 additional titles or whatever it is + 1 YEC.

Competition is about equal with Nole having the weakest era so far since 2014. If it goes on til 2020 Nole is undoubtedly the weak era king.
Nole won all masters once, and 8 of them twice. Federer misses two.
 
It is about the greatest of all time and when Zverev and Tsitsipas are playing in the same era of big 3 it is not fair to wait until the career of all contenders are over
If Tsitsipas or Zverev finish their career with more slam wins than whoever wins the most out of Federer/Nadal/Djokovic I'd happily concede they're the GOAT. Tsitsipas has a (very) remote chance, Zverev none at all.
 
I would say yes for Djokovic.

Fed was my first choice as a fan but besides that as a tennis fan (and therefore a fan of all 3) I think as most here have said, while GS tally is the most memorable, being well rounded is also important.

H2H is overrated and IMO kind of useless especially with Fed. He's much older. Nadal started much younger which changes things but I wouldn't argue if someone brought it up with Djokovic as at least they're almost the same age.

Its a dangerous road bringing that up though because all the fanbases bring up competition which is a crap shoot. You can only play who's in front of you. I think the big 3 (and even Murray in the masters), dominance messed up the confidence of the lost-gen, and we're not getting quality competition.
 
I think it is too much focus on slams. ok, they are by far the biggest tournaments but it is no1 and not slams that define the best player. former ATG champions have often skipped some slams but greatest prestige has always been to be no1, especially ye # 1. just see what did muzza to be ye # 1 in 2016. and what it had brought to him. And yet, even though he only had 1 and nole had 2 slams that year, everyone (including ATP and ITF) had seen him as the best player that year. however, here all people just appreciate slams but other tournaments, no1, ye # 1 and other records totally ignore.
 
I also dont like it since it involve comparing and tearing down players who are all in their own right just amazing. Be it on the mens side with Federer, Laver, Nadal, Djokovic, Sampras or the womens with people like Serena, Navratilova, Evert, Court, Graf. The argument to prove so and so are the GOAT always involve lots of tearing down of all others. And with players of that calibre it is pretty ridiculous and disrespectful.
You're right, GOAT arguments nearly always involve diminishing other players' achievements
 
There obviously is a greatest player ever - we just can’t prove definitively who it is.
I don't think there is though. For one there's different eras so could never really say if Laver played today or Fed played in the 60s who would have done what. Then it depends on who you play, due to matchups the draw makes a big difference. Then there's changing surfaces, Laver played on mainly grass, courts have sped up and slowed down.

So maybe one player would be best in certain conditions and another in other conditions. Maybe no one else could have done the calendar slam when Laver did but he wouldn't be able to win 4 in a row on current conditions like Djokovic did
 

Apun94

Hall of Fame
I mean Sampras had the highest peak ever and he was able to sustain it for several years. For me, he is the GOAT even if Federer gets to 30 slams in this pathetic era

See the problem? I actually (to some degree) believe what I just stated.
It's all subjective any ways since theres no way to say who's GOAT definitively. All speculation really
 
All those who are saying “Let us wait until Djokovic career is over “ - would you willingly admit Fed continues to be the GOAT if Djokovic fails to reach the target ?
 
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