Is Nadal done winning slams, or has he got one left? (ie the Lendl, Agassi, Sampras conundrum)

merlinpinpin

Hall of Fame
Interestingly enough, the last ATG's to dominate the game before the current crop of players were all 'gifted' a slam (with a draw that totally disintegrated before they had to play it) at the tail end of their respective careers.

* Lendl got AO '90, his very last slam win, with Cherkasov in QF, Noah in SF, and a retirement from Edberg in the final.

* Agassi got AO '03, also his last slam win, in which he played Grosjean, Ferreira, and Schuettler in QF, SF, and F.

* Sampras got his at Wimby '00, with his infamous draw from cakeland (not a single top 20 in sight): Gambill in QF, Voltchkov in SF, and Rafter (then ranked 21) in the final. After that, he got one last win, at his home slam, USO 2002.

* Nadal got the cakewalkiest draw ever at USO 2017, with Rublev, Del Potro, and Anderson in the last three rounds. Then, he won one more at his 'home' slam, RG 2018.

Now, as we can see, the last two guys to win 8 slams were essentially 'gifted' the last one, while Sampras, who is in the 10+ slams bracket, got gifted his next-to-last. Nadal is also a 10+ slam winner. Does this mean that he was also gifted his next-to-last slam (which would mean he won't win anymore)? Or can we imagine that, as a 15+ slam winner, he gets *two* slams after his gimme, which would mean another one to come? If asked, I would pick the second option, ie one more to come (FO 2019 seems the most logical pick).

(Of course, if the series hold and Federer gets *three* slams after his gimme (as a 20+ slam winner), that would mean he isn't through winning by a long shot, as he hasn't had said gimme yet (although he got an injured Cilic in the Wimby 2017 final, the rest of his draw from QF on (Raonic and Berdych) was perfectly normal, and could actually be argued to have been on the tough side considering their ranking and ability on grass). Still, even should this one be considered as an 'easy' win, that would mean two more to come, including at least one at his 'home' slam, ie Wimby.)

So, either one or zero more slams for Nadal, and either two or four+ for Federer should the series hold.

Discuss.
 

tennisaddict

Bionic Poster
I like Federer more than Nadal, but I think Federer will not get to 21, while Nadal will get to 21-23.
For Nadal to win 4-6 more majors, he needs at least 12 attempts . Do you see him play at a high level for 3 years ? The field is garbage but still ..
 

Mike Sams

Legend
Nadal should win at least 2 more Slams in Paris and maybe 2 more Slams outside of Paris. Possibly at USO and AO if he can get more gift draws. I might peg him for another Wimbledon if he gets a dream draw and avoids everyone and only plays a real threat in the final. He should be able to get 20-21 Slams. I think Federer has another 2 Slams in him if the field stays exactly as it is. Likely it will be at Wimbledon and/or AO. Possibly 3 Slams but hard to say. Wimbledon will tell us a lot this year. Federer will need to bring his level up obviously from the past 2 weeks and need to avoid any big threats in the first week.
 
D

Deleted member 512391

Guest
I don't think he's done, but I don't see him surpassing Roger.
 

mightyrick

Legend
I used to think Nadal was probably done winning slams, but now I don't think so. After seeing this nextgen for the last 12 months, they simply cannot deal with Nadal's style of relentless grinding. Every single nextgen player gets frustrated after four or five shots and tries to hit a miracle -- thus becoming an unforced error machine. Nobody is going to stop him. The entire nextgen field is far below his level. They have a tough time beating him in best-of-three... much less best of five.

I think the only thing keeping Nadal from surprassing Federer will be Nadal's health. If Nadal has one more major physical setback which puts him out for 6 months or more... then I think he's done at that point.

So I see Nadal winning at least three more slams... and then I think injury will force retirement. But if by some miracle Nadal stays healthy, then I think he surpasses Federer probably winning something like 5 or 6 slams. Three FOs and then two or three of the others.
 

Pheasant

Hall of Fame
Nadal's level over the field at the FO is still massive. He can still drop a bit and win a slam there. Ironically, I think that Nadal has 3 more slams(2 at FO and one more elsewhere) in him and will hit 20 for his career. I also think that this is Fed's last chance. Hopefully, Fed can win Wimbledon to get to 21.

Final slam count prediction:

Federer 20
Nadal 20
Djoker 16

If Nadal and Fed ended up tied, then this website will go insane. It will blow up so badly, that there will be power outages throughout the world! It'll be anarchy everywhere!
 

zverev2018

Semi-Pro
I’m pretty sure when Federer won the 2017 AO and Nadal won the 2017 RG, people thought it was their last hurrah... yet they won 2 additional slams each right after...
 

merlinpinpin

Hall of Fame
Not saying that this is my opinion or not, but this series is funny (although we don't have tons of stats yet, so it could be down to luck for all three of Lendl, Agassi, and Sampras (and Nadal at USO) without any relation to each other).

Still, people that I've been here for a while may remember that, in 2012, I made a thread about "the law of 13's", that posited that, every 13 slams, Fed's main rival went out early, and Fed almost lost, but finally won. For the series to keep going, he had to win Wimby 2012 while his main rival went out early (which he did after surviving a scare against Benneteau, while Nadal got Rosoled in R2), and then he had to win USO 2015 (which he almost did, reaching the final for the first time since 2009 and dominating most of the match but being unable to convert a gazillion BP's--but this time, he didn't survive any scare (his road to the final was much too easy) and his main rival hadn't gone out early). What I mean is, the law of 13's was almost right, so if this series is almost right, too (ie off by one slam, for example), I'll take it, too. ;)

Also, the current situation is quite unheard of. On the one hand, both Federer and Nadal are at an age when their level may drop anytime (or when an injury could spell the end of their career), and at the same time, the young players still aren't stepping up, so the current trend might either keep going for months or stop suddenly, for one or both of them.

(Djokovic getting back into the mix could help Nadal tremendously, as he would be fighting for the same slams as Federer, but only if he bounces back strong enough to beat Fed, and we'll have to wait for them to play each other to know that.)
 
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clout

Hall of Fame
I mean if Rogers last slam was the AO 2018 then that could probably fall under this category as well as the toughest player he played was Cilic. He's also 36 going on 37 and he looked quite vulnerable during the grass warmups so he isn't exactly a pencil in for the wimbledon title, though he's still the fav to win Imo (but not by as much as last year)
 

GOATzilla

Banned
Federer fits the pattern to the T as well :)

Cakewalkiest draw at Wimbledon 2017 where he beat Berdych (LOL mug), Raonic (LOL) and an injured Cilic (pretty much a bye). And then he won one more slam at AO 2018 :)

In OP’s divine words: “Does this mean that Federer was also gifted his next-to-last slam (which would mean he won't win anymore)? Or can we imagine that, as a 15+ slam winner, he gets *two* slams after his gimme, which would mean another one to come?” :)
 

Tennisanity

Legend
The issue is that when Federer passed his prime and entered his 30s, he still had peak Djokovic to deal with. Nadal in his 30s basically has no one to deal with. Thus, Nadal has been gifted and will be gifted additional slams. If Nadal had peak Djokovic to deal with on clay like Fed had on grass, Nadal would not have won the 2017 or the 2018 FOs. Definitely not USO2017. Nadal has really lucked out.
 

tennis_pro

Bionic Poster
Federer fits the pattern to the T as well :)

Cakewalkiest draw at Wimbledon 2017 where he beat Berdych (LOL mug), Raonic (LOL) and an injured Cilic (pretty much a bye). And then he won one more slam at AO 2018 :)

In OP’s divine words: “Does this mean that Federer was also gifted his next-to-last slam (which would mean he won't win anymore)? Or can we imagine that, as a 15+ slam winner, he gets *two* slams after his gimme, which would mean another one to come?” :)
LMAO Federer's draw at Wimbledon was 10000x tougher than Nadal's draw at the US Open.

Fed's 3rd and 4th round opponents (Zverev and Dimitrov) alone were tougher than Nadal's 2017 US draw LOL.
 

Vamos Rafa Nadal

Professional
Nadal will win 5 more Grand Slams! :)

Truth is we have no idea if any of the top 3 will ever win again. Or if they will win more and more. Are any of the younger players hungry enough to start winning? I am predicting that someone new will win a GS within the next year and things will start to change. But I do HOPE that Nadal wins more Grand Slams. I am a Nadal fan. and a Thiem fan. and a Coric fan. Among other players...
 

Slightly D1

Professional
The issue is that when Federer passed his prime and entered his 30s, he still had peak Djokovic to deal with. Nadal in his 30s basically has no one to deal with. Thus, Nadal has been gifted and will be gifted additional slams. If Nadal had peak Djokovic to deal with on clay like Fed had on grass, Nadal would not have won the 2017 or the 2018 FOs. Definitely not USO2017. Nadal has really lucked out.
It works both ways, Fed was able to stockpile trophies and weeks at number 1 before Nadal and Djokovic fully burst onto the scene. You complain that a 32 year old is playing great in a noticeably weak era yet you don’t complain about Fed racking it up with nobody to deal with during the start of his prime.
 

Tennisanity

Legend
It works both ways, Fed was able to stockpile trophies and weeks at number 1 before Nadal and Djokovic fully burst onto the scene. You complain that a 32 year old is playing great in a noticeably weak era yet you don’t complain about Fed racking it up with nobody to deal with during the start of his prime.
Fed had to deal with Roddick who leads Djokovic in H2H. Other guys from Fed's era, Blake, Davy, Bags, etc, destroyed Nadal during his peak year in 2010 when those guys were past prime. So really it's Fed who suffered the most since he had to beat super stars throughout his career.
 
Interestingly enough, the last ATG's to dominate the game before the current crop of players were all 'gifted' a slam (with a draw that totally disintegrated before they had to play it) at the tail end of their respective careers.

* Lendl got AO '90, his very last slam win, with Cherkasov in QF, Noah in SF, and a retirement from Edberg in the final.

* Agassi got AO '03, also his last slam win, in which he played Grosjean, Ferreira, and Schuettler in QF, SF, and F.

* Sampras got his at Wimby '00, with his infamous draw from cakeland (not a single top 20 in sight): Gambill in QF, Voltchkov in SF, and Rafter (then ranked 21) in the final. After that, he got one last win, at his home slam, USO 2002.

* Nadal got the cakewalkiest draw ever at USO 2017, with Rublev, Del Potro, and Anderson in the last three rounds. Then, he won one more at his 'home' slam, RG 2018.

Now, as we can see, the last two guys to win 8 slams were essentially 'gifted' the last one, while Sampras, who is in the 10+ slams bracket, got gifted his next-to-last. Nadal is also a 10+ slam winner. Does this mean that he was also gifted his next-to-last slam (which would mean he won't win anymore)? Or can we imagine that, as a 15+ slam winner, he gets *two* slams after his gimme, which would mean another one to come? If asked, I would pick the second option, ie one more to come (FO 2019 seems the most logical pick).

(Of course, if the series hold and Federer gets *three* slams after his gimme (as a 20+ slam winner), that would mean he isn't through winning by a long shot, as he hasn't had said gimme yet (although he got an injured Cilic in the Wimby 2017 final, the rest of his draw from QF on (Raonic and Berdych) was perfectly normal, and could actually be argued to have been on the tough side considering their ranking and ability on grass). Still, even should this one be considered as an 'easy' win, that would mean two more to come, including at least one at his 'home' slam, ie Wimby.)

So, either one or zero more slams for Nadal, and either two or four+ for Federer should the series hold.

Discuss.
Since nobody seems to have, I will challenge the assumption that Rafter or Thiem were cuppycake for Sampras/Nadal. Rafter beat Agassi (the 99 finalist and 92 winner) in the semis and was the strongest opposition Sampras had on grass at that point. Likewise Thiem vs Nadal was the only final people thought would be barely worthwhile out of the possible combinations. And while it was one sided, it was less so than last year's RG.
 

merlinpinpin

Hall of Fame
Since nobody seems to have, I will challenge the assumption that Rafter or Thiem were cuppycake for Sampras/Nadal. Rafter beat Agassi (the 99 finalist and 92 winner) in the semis and was the strongest opposition Sampras had on grass at that point. Likewise Thiem vs Nadal was the only final people thought would be barely worthwhile out of the possible combinations. And while it was one sided, it was less so than last year's RG.
True, it might be argued that Rafter was a tough opponent for Sampras in 2000 (and compared to the rest of his draw, he certainly was! Gambill was ranked #56 when Sampras met him in the QF, and Voltchkov, his SF opponent, was #237 at the time!). However, at the time, Rafter was in the slump of his life, down to #21 and with only a single tournament win to his name all year, in s'Hertogenbosch (oddly enough, he also had one single win in 1999, also in s'Hertogenbosch). That was a far cry from the Rafter who got to #1 after beating Sampras in Cincinnati and at the US Open in 1998. And yet, that Rafter was only a couple of points from a two sets to love lead...

As for Thiem, I fail to see how he was a tough opponent for Nadal at USO 2017, where Nadal didn't even face him.
 

hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
Interestingly enough, the last ATG's to dominate the game before the current crop of players were all 'gifted' a slam (with a draw that totally disintegrated before they had to play it) at the tail end of their respective careers.

* Lendl got AO '90, his very last slam win, with Cherkasov in QF, Noah in SF, and a retirement from Edberg in the final.

* Agassi got AO '03, also his last slam win, in which he played Grosjean, Ferreira, and Schuettler in QF, SF, and F.

* Sampras got his at Wimby '00, with his infamous draw from cakeland (not a single top 20 in sight): Gambill in QF, Voltchkov in SF, and Rafter (then ranked 21) in the final. After that, he got one last win, at his home slam, USO 2002.

* Nadal got the cakewalkiest draw ever at USO 2017, with Rublev, Del Potro, and Anderson in the last three rounds. Then, he won one more at his 'home' slam, RG 2018.

Now, as we can see, the last two guys to win 8 slams were essentially 'gifted' the last one, while Sampras, who is in the 10+ slams bracket, got gifted his next-to-last. Nadal is also a 10+ slam winner. Does this mean that he was also gifted his next-to-last slam (which would mean he won't win anymore)? Or can we imagine that, as a 15+ slam winner, he gets *two* slams after his gimme, which would mean another one to come? If asked, I would pick the second option, ie one more to come (FO 2019 seems the most logical pick).

(Of course, if the series hold and Federer gets *three* slams after his gimme (as a 20+ slam winner), that would mean he isn't through winning by a long shot, as he hasn't had said gimme yet (although he got an injured Cilic in the Wimby 2017 final, the rest of his draw from QF on (Raonic and Berdych) was perfectly normal, and could actually be argued to have been on the tough side considering their ranking and ability on grass). Still, even should this one be considered as an 'easy' win, that would mean two more to come, including at least one at his 'home' slam, ie Wimby.)

So, either one or zero more slams for Nadal, and either two or four+ for Federer should the series hold.
I guess these “gifts” are in the eyes of the beholder.
 

Rafa24

Hall of Fame
Nadal is younger and looks far more fit than Federer. The real question is: will Federer be done winning Slams in 2018 or 2019?
The only difference is Fed has a massive weapon with his serve. He looked pretty average compared to last year in Halle but breezed thru his service games for the most part. Serve is the last thing to go with age and it' his best shot.
 

Bukowski

Professional
Very difficult to tell. I thought he was done for sure after his 2015/2016 seasons. I have seen Moya or Toni say they believe Rafa can take RF's slam record. I dont think theyd make such a bold claim if they didnt believe it. If RF can win at 35+ i dont see why Rafa cant other than his game just not being good enough on HC and grass against red lining or top ranked big hitters. I think hes got 2+ FO's left and maybe could sneak another HC slam like he did the last US Open. But in contrast to RF, when his confidence is shot, his form seems to dip quickly and for long periods of time. For example after that shock 2009 FO loss his didnt really regain top form until the following clay season I believe. Roger seems to pull together consistent deep runs even after shock upsets and dips in form.
 

Red Rick

Talk Tennis Guru
I’m pretty sure when Federer won the 2017 AO and Nadal won the 2017 RG, people thought it was their last hurrah... yet they won 2 additional slams each right after...
Not really. Federer won the Sunshine double right before skipping the clay season, so he was the very obvious favorite for Wimbledon, whereas if Nadal is reaching Slam finals on HC, he's not done at RG in the next year.

As for the OP, Nadal should definitely be the favorite for RG next year and probably the year after that. But I'm mainly interested to see how he does healthy on HC in 2018.
 

Bukowski

Professional
Me as well. Rafa hasnt put together an entire season of top form in quite a while. Usually his dominance is followed by injury lay offs or some upsets. But i cant think of another year in recent memory where he took a good chunk of time off in the early parts of the calendar (IW and Miami). Maybe this will grant him good form for the latter end of the year. Either way, him playing at this level bodes well for him in 2019.
 

Red Rick

Talk Tennis Guru
Granted, Fed was a long way from in top form, but I don't think a win over Delpo on HCs in final rounds is ever a cakewalk.

Some majors are easier than others, and it's just a matter of luck.
Honestly I think Del Potro is playing better now than he was at that USO.
 

Gary Duane

G.O.A.T.
Me as well. Rafa hasnt put together an entire season of top form in quite a while. Usually his dominance is followed by injury lay offs or some upsets. But i cant think of another year in recent memory where he took a good chunk of time off in the early parts of the calendar (IW and Miami). Maybe this will grant him good form for the latter end of the year. Either way, him playing at this level bodes well for him in 2019.
I'm thinking next year maybe he will cut down his clay schedule. Of course he'll play RG, but he doesn't have to play all the rest. It pushes up his ranking, but it pushes down his performance later in the year. I'll be very curious how he looks at Wimbledon. I thought he look gassed at the end of RG.
 

Jonas78

Legend
A huge factor will be If Djokovic or someone else steps up. If Djokovic finds his 2016AO level It will be extremely difficult for Fedal to win HC slams, and also tough on grass/clay.
 

ewiewp

Semi-Pro
Something has changed.
Players career has been extended.
Players are playing actively into mid-30s, some are peaking at mid-30's.
The tour is the oldest EVER.
 
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