Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by 5555, Jan 29, 2012.
What do you think?
I was wondering this same thing myself.
I figured I had procrastinated long enough in putting Djokovic on my all-time list.
So right now he has 5 majors total, plus I have to factor in that triple from last year.
Can he keep it up? Right now, he looks unstoppable (except for his own injuries).
Interesting that Trabert who also has five, also had a triple.
One thing that Djokovic over those other guys is that he has already had one dominant year. Wilander's year in 1988 was great but he really didn't win too many tournaments that year.
It's odd how Djokovic has seemingly done so much in such a short time, relative to Edberg, Becker and Wilander.
Wilander's first GS title was in 1982, last in 1988, with a total of 7 over seven years, and his 3 in one year were his last.
Edberg's first GS title was in 1985, last in 1992, for a total of 6 over eight years.
Becker's first GS title was in 1985, last in 1996, for a total of 6 over eleven years.
Djokovic doesn't look like he's done winning majors yet, so if he's not in the tier with these three yet, I have little doubt he will be.
All good points.
Djoker's present dominance seems to have certainly put him on a fast track.
Yeah, Djoker is level with those guys and it looks extremely probable he will surpass them this year, barring injury.
How do you compare a near Grand Slam year with a HoF career? It's close. I'm tempted to even put him above those guys on the expectation that he'll continue to win championships for the next few years.
I think it is silly to group him with the likes of Courier and Vilas at this point. So yes I definitely think he is part of that group, despite that he is a major or two behind at this point.
If not, he's just on the cusp. You can definitely make a strong argument that he belongs in that group who all won 6 (Becker, Edberg) or 7 (Wilander) Slams. He's beaten the top guys of his era, he's achieved No. 1.
One thing differentiating him from that group, other than, obviously, the lower Slam count is:
(1) longevity. While I assume he will continue to win Slams, so far he has won Slams over a 4 year period (2008-2012), while Edberg (1985-1991 six years), Becker (1985-1996 11 years) and Wilander (1982-1988 six years) have shown Slam caliber tennis over longer period.s Obviously, Novak has the skills and the opportunity to do the same, but he's not there yet.
(2) Slam finals - again, he'll probably get there shortly, but including wins he's been to 7 slam finals, while Becker (10), Edberg (11) and Wilander (11) have more.
But, obviously, in Novak's favor of being included in that group NOW is that he had dominant 2011 year. True, Wilander won 3 of 4 in 1988, but he wasn't as dominant in the non-Slams that year.
All have won Davis Cups for their country. I supposed you could look at overall tournament wins, etc.
But, the fact is you can make arguments for being included now or having to achieve just a bit more. No one is going to agree.
I'd put him in that group now despite having "only" 5 slams.
Novak has dominated tennis in the last over a year now in a way none of those ever have. Even Wilander's 3 slam year was nothing overall like Djokovic's 2011, especialy hardly losing a match for over 8 months. Heck he barely edged slamless Lendl for the #1 ranking that year if I recall. Becker and Edberg between them had a combined 1 multi slam year between them.
You could also easily argue Novak is more consistent than any of them. He has been in the year end top 3 for 5 years running now. He was winning Masters titles (or atleast 1), and making slam semis or finals everyone of those years.
Not to mention he is playing in an era with 2 of the very greatest players of all time. Becker, Edberg, and Wilander were the leaders and of an era between the McEnroe/Lendl era and the Sampras era to come. Almost something of a long transitional era with no dominant dog, and Wilander, Becker, Edberg, Courier all shining at #1 for awhile, mostly in brief stints. Which wasnt a weak era, but they hardly had a Federer and Nadal combo in their way on all surfaces. Should be noted of course Becker, Wilander, and to a lesser extent Edberg had also shown brightly in the Lendl era prior to that. Someone like Wilander though might be hard pressed to win more than 1 or 2 majors in something like a Federer/Nadal era.
I think it's not only a question of number. Becker and Edberg, and even McEnroe, won more Grand Slams than Vilas and Courier, but they won only on fast courts, they didn't win the French. Vilas, Courier, Wilander won on fast courts (grass or hard) and on clay. I think they're greater than the others, for this reason.
Not sure one can argue about consistency until Djokovic has played more years. Edberg, for example, had a very consistent career, with 5 years in the top 3, 9 years in the top 5, 10 years in the top 10, and his entire career - 13 years - in the top 25.
Djokovic can still get there, but I wouldn't rank him more consistent just yet.
Tennis may be more "physical" today, but that simple observation does not mean it is better or of higher quality.
Weeks at number 1:
according to 90% of people from this forum from 1 year ago, Djoker is just one slam wonder, on the same side with Safin.
Becker won 6 GS, Edberg also...Djokovic remains still lower ( and not considering how weak is Djokovic era¡¡¡)
He is no better than Vilas.
Short answer: no, not yet, but he is on his way to enter that tier, and may even surpass it. But common, give it some time, his carreer isn't over yet. Time will tell.
How many more weeks till Djoker can mathematically be knocked from #1? I imagine he will be near Edberg's total at a minimum.
another clueless statement from the clueless kiki ...
Djokovic >>>>> Vilas
Djoker's era is weak ???????? LOL, that's as much as a joke as Vilas's draws to win the AOs were !!!! ha ha .....
Vilas had one "legit" GS win, in a full field ....USO in 77 ....... FO 77 win was only because borg didn't play ..... And of course Vilas' AO wins were against joke, weakened fields ....
Djoker has beaten either/both of federer/nadal in his GS wins ......5 of them, all against full fields .......
Vilas is more more more charismatic than Djoko, Vilas is a legend, and he's better too. He won on clay and on grass, he won 62 tournaments, he makes incredible records in 1977 : tournaments won in one year (14), and matches won consecutively (46). I think that saying "because borg didn't play" is absurd : who knows ? + that's not Vilas's problem.
About AO, a lot of people say that Vilas wins are not great victories, beacause he didn't beat top ten players, and especially Borg or Connors. I think it's absurd too. First, AO is a Grand Slam, you have to win several matches in 5 sets, so it's a great tournament. Second, it's not Vilas's problem if Borg and Connors prefered staying with their families for Christmus, while Vilas trained 7 hours/day on australian grass with only Ion Tiriac. And third, Vilas beated in AO great grass players of this era, like McNamara, Chris Lewis (Wimbledon finalist), Amaya ... And in 1978, it's not his fault if Marks beated Ashe in semi-final (it's sure that Vilas-Ashe would be a greater final than Vilas-Marks). And, last point, on january 75, in the Masters, on australian grass, Vilas beated Borg, Nastase and Newcombe !!
Vilas was never No. 1. Not even for only one week.
For once we agree on something. Vilas is basically a 1 slam winner really. One could argue Djokovic was a better player even before 2011 began. Now he is in a whole other planet from Vilas.
Everyone knows that in 1977, Vilas was the world champion, like said the magazine World Tennis. ATP ranking was absurd at this period : the number one in 1977 was Connors, who didn't win a Grand Slam !
It's possible to say anything, but Vilas won 4 Grand Slams. On two opposite surfaces : grass and clay (even 3 surfaces because european clay and american clay are very different). Djokovic, Becker, Edberg, McEnroe, Sampras never did.
... and you can see here that Vilas's volley is much better than Djoko's volley.
Ok, I know Marks was totally unknown. But he did a great tournament, played a fantastic tennis, and beated Arthur Ashe in semi-final after saving a match point. He was like Verkerk, Lewis, Pecci ... One tournament players.
Djokovic still has a ways to go.
To his credit is winning against both Nadal and Fed where Fed is still a major force and Nadal is in his prime.
If Djokovic wins RG it will give him a career slam and four in a row, a few more weeks as #1 and probably enough for year end #1.
A short amount of time but huge stats for over a year with no end in sight.
It's possible to say anything, but Vilas was never No. 1
In 1977, Tennis Magazine (France) ranked Borg #1. Lance Tingay of the London Daily Telegraph and Rino Tommasi of Rome's Tennis Club magazine also rated Borg first. ATP awarded Borg "Player of The Year". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World-number-one_male_tennis-player_rankings
You are so clueless about Vilas...well, 2 more years of Djokovic vs Nadal, and tennis will sound as exciting as a FISHING contest...jajajajaja
... and more important, during Vilas playing years he had to face: Connors,Borg,Mc Enroe,Newcombe,Gerulaitis,Nastase,Orantes,Panatta,Laver,Ashe,Smith,Kodes,Rosewall,Lendl,Tanner and a few ones...
Djokovic rivals other than Nadal and Fed, just suck, they never even dreamed of winning something bigger than a Masters Series.Weakest competitive era since Tilden and the 4 Mousketeers...
Yes, they live in 2 planets.Vilas that one called " Golden era" and Djokovic that one called " weakest competitive era".True.
Pecci was much more than a one shot guy.Great record along 1979-1981.great matches with Vilas, one specially at Washington (7-6,6-7,6-6 Pecci retired with cramps)
Vilas was a weak volleyer during his time, but would be superstar volleyer today...Djokovic and volley don´t fit in the same sentence.
Yes, and french Tennis Magazine received a lot of letters from their readers who didn't understand this ranking. For World Tennis (which was the reference at this era), Tennis de France, Le livre d'or du tennis, Eugene L. Scott (Gros plans sur le tennis), Michel Sutter ... Vilas was n°1. And ATP should recognize today the "mistake".
Can you find one reliable source which claims that Vilas was undisputed No. 1? There many reliable sources which claim that Djokovic is undisputed No. 1 http://www.anywhere.me/gresult?source=0&client=haringey&q=djokovic undisputed 2011&page=1
Vilas won 2 of the 3 majors, reached the final of the 4 th and the semis of the 5 th (Masters).results wise, he deserved the nº 1 spot.
It´s like 1989, with Becker winning 2 of the big 3 ( and being sf at the third, the FO) and yet, Lendl, who didn´t win a major, ended up ranked nº 1.
That's true. Nobody can seriously say that Vilas is not the world champion in 1977. It's totally absurd.
In any case, Vilas played more years than 1977...
He was always a factor, from 1974-1979 in any GS, except Wimbly...played several times the USO sf and FO sf, was beaten in 2 FO finals by his nemesis Bjorn Borg, who also defeated him at the 1976 WCT Finals, after Vilas beat the swede, 2 years early, at the Kooyong´s Masters.
Vilas never did well enough at Wimbledon, but he didn´t have the talent to adjust to ultra fast London´s grass, while he had a month or so to prepare for Australian Open´s Grass...
from 1979 to 1983, Vilas was not one of the favourites to win a slam title, but I remember seeing him play extremely well in the first half of 1982 ( FO finalist, USo and Masters SF, winner of 4 or 5 TMS, beating handiliy Connors,Lendl in venues like Milan,Rotterdam,Madrid and Montecarlo)
all in all, one of the best representatives of the golden era.
Very good post. I agree. Vilas is a real legend. The only real disappointment in his career is the French final against Wilander. He should win that match, and his fifth and last Grand Slam. He was unlucky, because he has a set point in the second set. But he lost.
But from 1973 to 1983, he was in the top ten, and even in the top five. Played a lot of great matches. He was also a fantastic Davis Cup player, even if Argentina didn't win the Cup : but Vilas in Buenos Aires won fantastic matches against McEnroe, Noah ... Fantastic period for the tennis. He did a come back in 1992, at 40 years, won a few matches and was in the top 400 ! Vilas loves the tennis.
I really liked Vilas's clay-court game (and I loved his Head racquet). On my OAT-list, I have Vilas behind Djokovic already: Vilas at no. 31 and Djokovic at 25.
Djokovic can easily move up; Vilas can only go down.
oh then enlighten me, oh wise one , which part did I get wrong about Vilas' GS victories ......
The joke AO fields or borg missing the FO ?
Face it , djoker >>>>>> vilas .....Only in your la la land of nostalgia, Vilas is close to Djoker , not in the land of reality ...
What drugs do you take, young babies, to endure a Djokovic vs Nadal match? Any suggestion?
Djoker's rivals also include the likes of Murray, Tsonga, delpo, Berdych, Roddick, Nalbandian,Davydenko,Safin etc who are just as good as the likes of Tanner, Gerulatis, Panetta ,Orantes , 40 year old Rosewall ( not peak Rosewall ) , Kodes etc ...... Just that most of them weren't allowed slams by the trio of Federer, Nadal and Djoker ....
Most importantly, Djoker has managed great wins vs both Nadal and federer. Vilas didn't do much vs Borg ......He won 5 slams vs full fields .. unlike Vilas who did so only once - USO 77 ....
I don't ....... I have after all watched the clay court matches like Vilas-Borg FO final in 78.....Have you ? :twisted:
That Master win in early 75 was finest achievement of Vilas on grass. But that's about it. I don't rate his AO wins that much at all.....
yes, AO is a Grand Slam. But that was a very weakened slam at that time. One of the things that makes a Grand Slam great is full fields , with most of the top players playing. That wasn't the case with the AO in Vilas' time ..
Oh and Ashe was getting quite old by that time ....
Saying Borg didn't play isn't absurd at all. Borg totally owned Vilas on all surfaces ....He was forced to skip the FO in 77 because of WTT ..... It might have been different if the circumstances were different, say an injury or something like that ...
Oh and while Vilas' 77 was a great year, Djoker's 2011 was by some distance superior ..
I decided after that pitful Wimbledon final of last year to rechannel batteries and wait for a better future.
You mean you have actually watched a match in the modern times ? :shock:
The present is still better than those borefests on clay in the 70s ( of which Vilas was a big part ) .....I would prefer to see some more aggression and all court tennis, but Nadal-Djoker is million times better those borefests on clay .....
Funny how you mention Djoker being 'boring', in a thread comparing him with Vilas !
I won´argue with you sice, obviously, our taste and criteria is completely opposed...and I won´t even try to explain to you why Vilas had a very nice craftmanship.I saw him live lots of times and you obviously never have, so I thing it is a lose of time to even start with it.
LOL, wut ???? I have seen quite a few of Vilas' matches .....
So 30-40 shot rallies of players looping the ball over the net ( ala Borg-Vilas ) is exciting tennis ?? :lol:
Atleast nadal-djoker try to make each other move side to side, create angles and try to get an opening to finish the point. Those clay court matches in the 70s , involving Vilas, on the other hand were just about patience, about who blinked first ....
Its not taste at all ..... Its about your hypocrisy/nostalgia-blindness .......I'd understand if you mention mcenroe/connors/becker as more exciting than djoker playing style wise, but Vilas ???? You cannot be serious ...
Like I said, Nadal-Djoker isn't what I prefer or my first choice , I'd rather see more offense and all-court play ala Federer, Edberg, Sampras, Mac ..... Atleast Djoker is capable of more offense, as he showed in 2007-08 .... Now with surfaces having slowed down even more, he is playing more defense as that is the best way to go and he is capable of it ..... But to glorify Vilas ( his boring play, atleast on clay ) and then say Nadal-Djoker is boring is the heights !!!!!!!
Vilas was not a fav of mine but he certainly moved into the net twice or three times ( maybe, even more) the total combined of Djoker and Nadal... and, as you say, he was a classical clay court groundstroke player'''.
If the boring player of the golden era is more appealing than the top 2 players of nowadays...well. maybe I am the only one in this forum to see it but TENNIS, WE HAVE A PROBLEM
Moving to the net to finish off a point after a 50 shot rally isn't really something to brag about - I'm referring to his play on clay of course ....
If you are talking about his play on AO grass, then give the current players grass of that speed, they'll come in more, guaranteed .....
It's sure that the matches Borg/Vilas were not the most exciting, because they had the same game. But Borg/McEnroe, Vilas/Connors, Borg/Gerulaitis, Vilas/Noah ..., it was fantastic ! More and more beautiful than Nadal/Djokovic/Murray/Federer, because today all players played exactly the same game. And even Borg/Vilas is more exciting than the matches today : I would like to see today rallies of 40, 50 or 60 shots. But even on clay, 5 or 6 shots, and the point is ended.
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