Is 52 weeks at #1 more valuable than a slam?

buscemi

Hall of Fame
I take hewitt over wawrinka though. Murray is ahead because of the titles and massive win % etc I would take his career without say second wimbledon.
Agreed. But Hewitt had 80 weeks at #1 and 2 year-end #1 rankings vs. Stan having a career high ranking of #3.
 

mtommer

Hall of Fame
If being #1 was easier, you'd expect to see more people as #1 and fewer winning slams. The opposite is true, hence the claim must be false- being #1 is harder.

To be #1, it takes 52 weeks of consistent work, effort, talent, and ability on all surfaces. To win a slam, you can specialize on a surface or just be really good for 2 weeks, then fall off soon after. After all, we all know Pat Rafter; who knows Petr Korda?
Perhaps, or there is less motivation to achieve the #1 spot and so it's easier for anyone person to stay there. Also, I would say it may depend on how the number one spot is calculated. Are tournaments "weighted" fairly? Is progressing in a tournament and each spot weighted fairly? Do all players start at zero at the beginning of the tennis season? The number one ranking can be complicated compared to: Slam - Won (check).
 

BGod

Legend
The #1. Look at it this way. Lleyton Hewitt has 2 Slams, but 80 weeks at #1, good for 10th and 75 consecutively, good for 9th.

Compare his career with Gustavo Kuerten who has the extra Slam.

In the OP's scenario you got 6 to 5. How about Jimmy Connors vs. McEnroe with 8>7? Except Jimmy had more weeks to boot.

Obviously in the case of Mats Wilander, who had 7 Slams but only 20 weeks, it's different but that's not the OP's question.


It also changes based on what the spread was. Are we compare 2-1-1-1 to 5-1-0-0? What about WTFs? To get an extra year in #1 you're probably looking at more YEs too, maybe 3 to 1.
 

buscemi

Hall of Fame
The #1. Look at it this way. Lleyton Hewitt has 2 Slams, but 80 weeks at #1, good for 10th and 75 consecutively, good for 9th.

Compare his career with Gustavo Kuerten who has the extra Slam.
But I don't know that Hewitt spending 52 consecutive weeks at #1 in 2002 makes much of a difference. Imagine a world where Agassi is able to play in the 2002 Australian Open and ends up spending a few weeks at #1, but Hewitt still spends most of 2002 at #1 and finishes the year at #1. I don't think that the Hewitt vs. Kuerten analysis changes much.
 
D

Deleted member 307496

Guest
The #1. Look at it this way. Lleyton Hewitt has 2 Slams, but 80 weeks at #1, good for 10th and 75 consecutively, good for 9th.

Compare his career with Gustavo Kuerten who has the extra Slam.

In the OP's scenario you got 6 to 5. How about Jimmy Connors vs. McEnroe with 8>7? Except Jimmy had more weeks to boot.

Obviously in the case of Mats Wilander, who had 7 Slams but only 20 weeks, it's different but that's not the OP's question.


It also changes based on what the spread was. Are we compare 2-1-1-1 to 5-1-0-0? What about WTFs? To get an extra year in #1 you're probably looking at more YEs too, maybe 3 to 1.
Lleyton Hewitt was a better player than Gustavo Kuerten, he was just unlucky to run into Roger Federer on his favorite surfaces every chance he got (which is where he'd accumulate more majors), while Gustavo Kuerten was busy getting routined by journeyman in the first rounds at his favorite slam and then after getting through the match (somehow?) he makes the final against someone like Magnus Norman. Once both got injuries they were finished.
 
Player A has 5 slams, 2 years at #1, consecutive.
Player B has 6 slams, 1 year at #1, consecutive.

Who is better?
2 years at number one. Whilst slams are the highest value of tournaments to win, to say they are the only thing makes a mockery of the rest of the tour. This being the only criteria is a modern development. To be the best, you want to win everything. McEnroe only won 2 slams in 1984, but it's still damn near the best season in tennis history.

If you were talking the difference between a smaller number of weeks, then I'd opt for the slam, but to be the best tennis player in the world for an additional year, I'd take that.
 
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