Laver Overrated

Cyborg! I noticed you didn't address my statement because ypu know it is true. Laver played against a very small pool of talent representing mainly Australia, US, and England. At only 5'8'' he couldn't possibly compare athletically to Sampras and Federer. I get so sick about hearing about Lavers two grand slams-what a joke! He won those mainly on grass against only a handful of players competitively. When it is all done Federer will go down as the greatest player ever and not a little munchkin!
 
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Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
Cyborg! I noticed you didn't address my statement because ypu know it is true. Laver played against a very small poll of talent representing mainly Australia, US, and England. At only 5'8'' he couldn't possibly compare athletically to Sampras and Federer. I get so sick about hearing about Lavers two grand slams-what a joke! He won those mainly on grass against only a handful of players competitively. When it is all done Federer will go down as the greatest player ever and not a little munchkin!

I guess then the difference between 5' 8" and 5' 11" is astronomical? Andre Agassi is 5'11" and seemed to fare well against Roger Federer even though he was way over 30.


Using your logic, there is no way Oliver Rochus at 5'5" (really 5'3") should be able to compete with, I don't know, Ivo Karlovic? And yet, when the cold light of reality is shown, Rochus has defeated Karlovic not once, but twice. And, one of those victories was on grass.

Now, certainly the "poll of talent" (is that different than "pool of talent") is greater now, but I don't believe Mr. Laver's height would in any way preclude him from competing on today's tour. Much as it doesn't appear to hurt a host of players who compete on today's tour and are under 6' 2".

Your assumption is false and your agrument ridiculous.
 

FiveO

Hall of Fame
Cyborg! I noticed you didn't address my statement because ypu know it is true. Laver played against a very small poll of talent representing mainly Australia, US, and England. At only 5'8'' he couldn't possibly compare athletically to Sampras and Federer. I get so sick about hearing about Lavers two grand slams-what a joke! He won those mainly on grass against only a handful of players competitively. When it is all done Federer will go down as the greatest player ever and not a little munchkin!


Massive oversimplification combined with overlooking some fact:

Did the US and Australia dominate International competition in those days? Sure. ("England"? Yeah, okay.) Was tennis still one if not the most international sport of the time? Yeah it was.

How about South Africa, Spain, Romania and Italy?

In Laver's era when Davis Cup actually meant more than it does now, at least in the U.S.:

Italy behind Nicola Pietrangali reached the DC final in '60 and '61.

Mexico reached a DC final in behind Rafe Osuna and Tony Palofax in '62.

Spain behind Manuel Santana reached the DC final in '65 and '67.

India reached finals in '66 and '74.

Romania with Ilie Nastase reached DC finals in '68, '69 and '72.

S. Africa won it in '74 before that blond guy from Sweden took his team to the title.

Here are some other guys in Laver's draws. And this list is limited to the Major winners and finalists reflecting Nationality and height (was that a joke?) in Laver's era.

Ever hear of these guys?

Pancho Gonzalez (6'2")? U.S.

Alex Olmedo (6'1")? Peru. (Olmedo was only allowed (after some heavy lobbying) to play for the U.S. Davis Cup team only because he was a U.S. resident and Peru had no Davis Cup team.)

Rafael Osuna? Mexico.

Arthur Ashe (6'1")? U.S.

Tom Okker? Netherlands.

John Newcombe (6'0")? Australia

Andres Gimeno (6'1")? Spain.

Stan Smith (6'4")? U.S.

Manuel Santana? Spain.

Nicola Pietrangeli? Italy.

Fred Stolle (6'3")? Australia

Jan Kodes? Czech Republic

Željko Franulović? Croatia former Yugoslavia

Alex Metreveli? Russia

Ilie Nastase (6'0")? Romania


Other 6'+ guys aside from John Newcombe who could play a little in Laver's time? Nikki Pilic (former Yugoslavia), Cliff Drysdale (South Africa) part of Lamar Hunt's original "handsome eight" along with Laver and Rosewall. The only three aside from Laver and Rosewall, that I'm not sure were over six feet tall were Butch Buchholz, Pierre Barthes (France) and Roger Taylor (Great Britain).

Height? Still got to be a joke. On average the top 100+ players on tour are shorter than they were even in Sampras' day. There is more to it than height or even raw athleticism. How did Yannick Noah do vs. better "tennis players"? How about Max Mirnyi or later Gael Monfils? How about Agassi's success v. Sampras. Let's pick a more current one, how 'bout Safin v. Santoro. Yeah, I know. "Yeah, but..."

You are welcome to the opinion you hold. The facts you offer in support, on the other hand, are mis-represented.
 
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CyBorg

Legend
The smallest guys are often the strongest on the tour. Years working as a hockey scout I learned that small players should not be ignored - particularly the short, stocky ones. They frequently exhibit the best lower body strength and build up muscle exceptionally well and quickly.

I watched Martin St. Louis throughout junior and he dominated tall lanky men on the ice. Today he can bench press an ungodly amount of pounds with his legs.

Short guys are also often the nastiest, meanest, most determined.
 
Rabit,Gorilla,Fiveo,-you guys are missing the point. Of course
pros play at all different heights but the ideal height for a male pro is 5'11-6'3"-McEnroe,Edberg,Lendl,Borg,Sampras,Federer,Nadal, Agassi,Kuerton,Courier,Brugera,Krajek,ect. I am talking about the all time best players will be taller due to leverage on the serve and ground strokes. Ideal height for leverage and movement is 6-6'2". Of course there are exceptions but there is no way to compare Laver at his height to Sampras and Federer due to leverage on the serve-last I checked the serve is the most important shot in mens tennis. Laver at 5'8" is a shrimp who could not hold a candle to Sampras and Federer athletically, particularly Sampras. Savin is the best overall athlete on tour today but lacks motivation and mental toughness. When you start getting over 6'3" there are movement issues and under 5'11" you tend to be very quick but lack leverage which translates to power. Of course there are exceptions but not as it relates to being the best tennis player ever. Noone under 6' enters in that discussion period! Also, McEnroe was the biggest waste of incredible talent due to his lack of training and partying but that is a whole different subject.
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
Rabit,Gorilla,Fiveo,-you guys are missing the point. Of course
pros play at all different heights but the ideal height for a male pro is 5'11-6'3"-McEnroe,Edberg,Lendl,Borg,Sampras,Federer,Nadal, Agassi,Kuerton,Courier,Brugera,Krajek,ect. I am talking about the all time best players will be taller due to leverage on the serve and ground strokes. Ideal height for leverage and movement is 6-6'2". Of course there are exceptions but there is no way to compare Laver at his height to Sampras and Federer due to leverage on the serve-last I checked the serve is the most important shot in mens tennis. Laver at 5'8" is a shrimp who could not hold a candle to Sampras and Federer athletically, particularly Sampras. Savin is the best overall athlete on tour today but lacks motivation and mental toughness. When you start getting over 6'3" there are movement issues and under 5'11" you tend to be very quick but lack leverage which translates to power. Of course there are exceptions but not as it relates to being the best tennis player ever. Noone under 6' enters in that discussion period! Also, McEnroe was the biggest waste of incredible talent due to his lack of training and partying but that is a whole different subject.

Unfortunately, you're the one missing the point(s). There are intangibles in the mix which you don't account for or even comprehend. Tennis magazine some years ago said the perfect physical build for a tennis player could be found in Jose Luis Clerc. While he had the perfect build, he did not have the intangibles to go with it. Laver did.

Rod Laver is simply the greatest player to ever step foot on a tennis court at any height. He could compete with Sampras, he did compete with Borg, Newcombe, Nastase, Connors, and other players around 6 feet.

Saying Laver couldn't compete with taller players is just plain stoopid and woefully uninformed.
 

FiveO

Hall of Fame
Rabit,Gorilla,Fiveo,-you guys are missing the point. Of course
pros play at all different heights but the ideal height for a male pro is 5'11-6'3"-McEnroe,Edberg,Lendl,Borg,Sampras,Federer,Nadal, Agassi,Kuerton,Courier,Brugera,Krajek,ect. I am talking about the all time best players will be taller due to leverage on the serve and ground strokes. Ideal height for leverage and movement is 6-6'2". Of course there are exceptions but there is no way to compare Laver at his height to Sampras and Federer due to leverage on the serve-last I checked the serve is the most important shot in mens tennis. Laver at 5'8" is a shrimp who could not hold a candle to Sampras and Federer athletically, particularly Sampras. Savin is the best overall athlete on tour today but lacks motivation and mental toughness. When you start getting over 6'3" there are movement issues and under 5'11" you tend to be very quick but lack leverage which translates to power. Of course there are exceptions but not as it relates to being the best tennis player ever. Noone under 6' enters in that discussion period! Also, McEnroe was the biggest waste of incredible talent due to his lack of training and partying but that is a whole different subject.

This gets even more outlandish. The argument now is leverage advantage, based on nothing more than because 'you say so'. Explain the leverage advantage to these players who were considered at one to or another the best player in the world. ALL sub-six footers.

Hoad
Rosewall
Laver
Osuna
Santana
Connors
Borg*
McEnroe*
Agassi*
Hewitt

* Having stood in close proximity to each of these player the " 5'11" " heights ascribed to these players seems about as believable as Serena's weight she lists in her WTA bio.

These players beat other major winners with the "leverage advantage" you want to believe exists, and who haven't progressed to the movement limiting heights of over 6'2".

Your claim is outlandish and baseless. You have to "want to believe" in order to make it so. The history says you are wrong. The current "downsizing" of players today from the 90's only amplifies how wrong your theory is.

You've missed the point.
 
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Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
Of course there are exceptions but there is no way to compare Laver at his height to Sampras and Federer due to leverage on the serve-last I checked the serve is the most important shot in mens tennis. Laver at 5'8" is a shrimp who could not hold a candle to Sampras and Federer athletically, particularly Sampras.

Rabbit, I never said that Laver could not compete with todays players including Sampras and Federer just don"t enter him in the discussion of the "greatest" player.

So, you just make this crap up as you go, huh? Why don't you read what you wrote and then try to lie your way out.

Fellow TW'ers, I would like to place Japanese Maple's name in nomination as Troll of the Year. Do I hear a second and is there any need in a vote?
 

Gizo

Hall of Fame
Connors would have atleast reached a French final if he'd played his peak years in 74-78. I don't think Borg's failure at Flushing Meadows was such a blemish. He was a great hard court player.
Rosewall would have won Wimbledon if he'd been playing in the open era. Federer would have won the French in the 80s and 90s. Nadal would have stopped anyone at Roland Garros, with the exception of Borg.

Would have, could have, should have. What ifs are entirely irrelevant.
 

sandy mayer

Semi-Pro
This gets even more outlandish. The argument now is leverage advantage, based on nothing more than because 'you say so'. Explain the leverage advantage to these players who were considered at one to or another the best player in the world. ALL sub-six footers.

Hoad
Rosewall
Laver
Osuna
Santana
Connors
Borg*
McEnroe*
Agassi*
Hewitt

* Having stood in close proximity to each of these player the " 5'11" " heights ascribed to these players seems about as believable as Serena's weight she lists in her WTA bio.

How tall are Borg, Mac and agassi?
 

caulcano

Hall of Fame
IMO, the Open Era list looks like this:

1. Laver - did it all, twice
2. Borg & Sampras
4. Agassi
5. Connors & Rosewall
7. McEnroe & Lendl
9. Mats Wilander
10. Becker & Edberg

Federer is absent, he's still playing. Were he to quit today, he'd probably be at number 4 pushing Agassi down. Two 3/4 Grand Slam years, his Wimbledon record, his ability to win on any surface (yes, clay included) and two French Open finals get him #4 spot. Remember, before anyone fusses, that it's he quit TODAY. As is, he's still got another 4 years ahead of him and that'll probably translate to 6 more Grand Slam titles easy.

I'd put Sampras #2 & Borg #3 AND agree with what you said about Federer.
 
Sandy Mayer-I am talking about the best player of all time-not the best player in their era. Once again, no player under 6' can remotely enter into the discussion of the best player of all time except for Borg who was 5'11 1/2. I believe most definitely that Agassi was closer to 6' than 5'11 and Roddick is not 6'2 he is 6'3 plus.
 

FiveO

Hall of Fame
...How tall are Borg, Mac and agassi?

My very unscientific, personal observation having stood in close proximity to each of them at different times. I stand 6'1" exactly, and eyeballing each they appeared shorter than 5'11". Could I swear to it in court? No. While it is not unusual for athlete's to inflate numbers regarding height in most competitive sports or measure themselves in playing footwear, it is, admittedly, my own impression.




Additionally regarding heights of tennis players trending downward since the highs of the mid-'90's which I've read in several tennis publications here is a graph furnished by Moose Malloy in another thread on a similar topic:

www.tennis28.com/charts/Player_Heights.GIF
 
FiveO-you are the one who has misseed the point! Your idea that the mens tour is downsizing is ridiculous! The latest ATP rankings list 21 out of the top 25 at 6' or greater and the majority are 6'1"-6'2"-is this your idea of downsizing? There will always be top players in the history of the game at various heights including under 6', but to be considered the greatest ever that person will most definitely be over 6'. When the serve is the most important shot in mens tennis a taller person as a distinct advantage, but you can't be too tall because movement becomes an issue. Ideal height for optimum leverage and movement is 6'1"-6'2"-Federer, Nadal,Sampras,Lendl,Edberg,ect. Agassi is closer to 6'. FiveO, get your facts correct before you babble on about "downsizing"!
 

FiveO

Hall of Fame
FiveO-you are the one who has misseed the point! Your idea that the mens tour is downsizing is ridiculous! The latest ATP rankings list 21 out of the top 25 at 6' or greater and the majority are 6'1"-6'2"-is this your idea of downsizing? There will always be top players in the history of the game at various heights including under 6', but to be considered the greatest ever that person will most definitely be over 6'. When the serve is the most important shot in mens tennis a taller person as a distinct advantage, but you can't be too tall because movement becomes an issue. Ideal height for optimum leverage and movement is 6'1"-6'2"-Federer, Nadal,Sampras,Lendl,Edberg,ect. Agassi is closer to 6'. FiveO, get your facts correct before you babble on about "downsizing"!

Babble on Maple, babble on.
 

NoBadMojo

G.O.A.T.
I've been wondering why a 'Drago' type tennis player hasnt ever emerged in tennis...you know...A 6'6 type of human speciman with crazy skills, athelticism, endurance, and power. When Safin first came up, I thought he might be it, but we all know what happened to him, and no need to discuss why.

The only thing I can figure out is that the sports where you swing something (a racquet, bat, hockey stick, golf club, etc), dont seem to benefit the very tall types, perhaps having something to do with having a longer lever which is harder to control. There are exceptions of course like the Big Unit in baseball altho he cant swing a bat very well <i dont think>, and Mario in hockey.
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
What you still don't get, what you either refuse to get or just plain can't comprehend is that tennis is not about height. The proof in the pudding is a player like Agassi, Connors, or Laver. While you keep on about how 6'2" is the great height, it's simply not the height of the greatest player.

You have already said that Laver couldn't compete with Sampras and/or Federer in one post and then in another denied ever having said anything like that. Until you can put forth a cogent argument and stick with it without waffling back and forth and saying this and that, you're nothing but a troll. In fact, you've defined troll.

I could care less about the height of the ATP now. You made the blanket statement that Laver couldn't compete with guys taller. That is a complete fabrication and totally untrue and proved untrue when Laver competed with guys at that height. Further, players shorter than him (Ken Rosewall) have competed longer and with guys taller with as much success albeit not a Grand Slam. Your statement that Laver's two Grand Slams doesn't mean anything to you further exemplifies your total lack of perspective or appreciation for the greatest accomplishment in the sport. None of this is name calling, it's just statement of fact.

Why don't you address how Oliver Rochus could beat Ivo Karlovic on grass? There is better than a foot difference between these two players. If height is such an advantage and such a determination of how good a player is, how does a player like Rochus survive, or win?

Why don't you explain how Andre Agassi won a career Grand Slam against players in the height range you described as being the optimal one when Agassi is 5'11" (on the books and possibly shorter).

If height is so important, let's include Justin Henin in the conversation and let you explain how she can't possibly be #1 in the world because she's too short.

You can't. The reason is that height is not the final determination of how good a player is. Your premise is invalid and your arguments are specious at best and just plain trolling at worst.
 
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jnd28

Rookie
Havent read all the posts here but would offer the following.

I think that Lavers record against Arthur Ashe was something like 21 -0. Ashe competed favorably with Conners and even McEnroe. To say that Laver couldnt handle the players of today is foolish.

When discussing the best tennis player of all time, I also think that you should include doubles. Without his doubles record Laver should be considered the best of all time, and when you include his doubles record it's really a no-brainer.

JN

JMHO
 

krosero

Legend
" 'We had a lot of time to talk', revealed Federer. Maybe it all gave me a sense of security because, for me, Sampras was the best player of all time. That is not to take anything away from Rod Laver, but when he won the Grand Slam, three of the tournaments were played on grass.'
In any Sampras-Laver comparison, this fact about the Slams of Laver's time is inapt, because Sampras' failure was on clay, and Laver did win the Slam on that surface.
 

jnd28

Rookie
It is hard for me to understand how anyone who has any understanding of tennis could look at the you tube video I posted above and not recognize that his game would hold up today. There is no one that volleys like that today - no one. Even at the age he was when this video was shot, his superior movement is apparent.

I am old enough to have seen him as well as many other all time greats play in person. In my humble but informed opinion, the best of any era could compete with the best of today. I believe that is true with all sports. Willie Mays, Joe Montana , Terry Bradshaw, and Tom Seaver would dominate today - as would Mr Laver.

JN
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
I believe when Laver played Borg in the video provided, he was 36 years old. The Rocket was rock solid.
 

jnd28

Rookie
can u imagine how many slams sampras would have had three of out of four been on grass

Not sure what your point is here. Laver could and did win on all surfaces - fast slow and medium. Having the different surfaces would have suited him more than anyone. With todays grass at the all England Club, not sure if Sampras would benefit. If the grass was as it is now in the not so distant past, Mr Lendl would have won a couple for sure.

JN
 

jnd28

Rookie
I would be very interested in more of Mr Mayers thoughts on the subject of the "best of all time". As I have said I think its Laver for sure. I would also put Emmo up there as well. Again I think that that doubles should be part of the equation unless you are ttalking about the best singles player. If you say best tennis player than doubs need to be part of the answer.

JN
 
Watching that YouTube clip and Laver just looks like an artist out there. Who is the best is certainly debatable but Laver is in the conversation.
 

alan-n

Professional
I believe when Laver played Borg in the video provided, he was 36 years old. The Rocket was rock solid.
I think Laver was closer to 40 Rabbit in that video. None the less not many people have talked about Rod Lavers movement, that was an area he was the at the top in during his era among other things such as top spin passing angles. The serve and volleyer of the past were torched by the angles that only Rod Laver could generate from his combination of pace and topspin. As great as Sampras still is and will always be, come-on Laver had the shots off the ground to put the ball out of anyone's reach. As for the all-court game, only Federer exceeds Rod in movement and anticipation. Agassi shortened the court by playing closer to the baseline and hitting on the rise... Federer and Rod are in a class of their own when it comes to being so smooth getting into position and executing any shot.
 

Moose Malloy

G.O.A.T.
Which type of grass? All on Wimbledon grass?

Yeah, I think its very poor logic, just assuming sampras would have 20 majors or something if grass was still used at 3 majors. look at how close goran was to beating him at wimbledon, imagine if he got 2 more shots at him per year, he'd get his share. ditto krajicek, stich, or even agassi.

And I think navratilova's record at the AO on grass compared to her record at Wimbledon in the 80s pretty much debunks this theory. She won 9 Wimbledons & only 3 AOs(she even lost to Chris Evert on grass in the '82 AO final, someone who was always at a clear disadvantage vs martina on grass) All grass is not the same, fans(& commentators) should look at players results from when 2 slams were on grass to see how they varied. Wilander couldn't even get to the semis at Wimbledon, yet made 3 finals on AO grass(winning 2). Becker won Wimbledon in '85/'86, yet lost early at the AO on grass in '85, '87.

Wilander played Zivojinovic at both Wimbledon & the AO in 1985. He lost to him at Wimbledon & beat him at the Australian. Wonder if the different grass was a factor in those results, I'm sure they thought so.

If so many here go on & on about the difference between the hardcourts at the AO & US Opens, its only fair to point out there were similar differences when grass was used at 3 majors. And Agassi & Sampras' records on Rebound Ace vs the US Open can show what this slight differences can do to favor one player over another.
 

Moose Malloy

G.O.A.T.
[QUOTEI think Laver was closer to 40 Rabbit in that video.][/QUOTE]

Yeah Laver was 38 & already basically retired(1977)at the time of that match, while Borg was reigning Wimbledon champ(& 20) That youtube match was not considered an official match(its not on the atp site), it was a 4 man invitational event with some good prize money.
Mixed doubles was part of the event as well.
 

CyBorg

Legend
I've been wondering why a 'Drago' type tennis player hasnt ever emerged in tennis...you know...A 6'6 type of human speciman with crazy skills, athelticism, endurance, and power. When Safin first came up, I thought he might be it, but we all know what happened to him, and no need to discuss why.

The only thing I can figure out is that the sports where you swing something (a racquet, bat, hockey stick, golf club, etc), dont seem to benefit the very tall types, perhaps having something to do with having a longer lever which is harder to control. There are exceptions of course like the Big Unit in baseball altho he cant swing a bat very well <i dont think>, and Mario in hockey.

A 6-foot-6 tennis player. Guys this tall are typically very lanky and awkward. Not too likely, but I suppose possible if the guy is a freak of nature.

As for Mario, I think he's 6-foot-4, but hockey is different. Zdeno Chara is 6-foot-9 and successful on ice, but wouldn't be very good on a tennis court. Just look at him.
 

krosero

Legend
Yeah, I think its very poor logic, just assuming sampras would have 20 majors or something if grass was still used at 3 majors. look at how close goran was to beating him at wimbledon, imagine if he got 2 more shots at him per year, he'd get his share. ditto krajicek, stich, or even agassi.
I agree, and I think part of the problem is that some people are imagining what things would be like for Sampras if he played the opponents that he played and nothing else changed except the surface.

For instance, Sampras lost to Agassi in the '95 Aussie Open final. If you imagine the same matchup but simply change the surface to grass (and you imagine it to be just like Wimbledon grass), then of course you would give the edge to Sampras.

But if the Aussie final in '95 had been on grass, Sampras might well have faced Ivanisevic, Krajicek, or Stich. I like their chances against Sampras, though as you point out even Agassi was a threat (pushing him to 5 sets at Wimbledon in 1993).

Everything changes if three Slams go back to grass, I think that's the key; Sampras is not the only variable.

And I think navratilova's record at the AO on grass compared to her record at Wimbledon in the 80s pretty much debunks this theory. She won 9 Wimbledons & only 3 AOs(she even lost to Chris Evert on grass in the '82 AO final, someone who was always at a clear disadvantage vs martina on grass) All grass is not the same, fans(& commentators) should look at players results from when 2 slams were on grass to see how they varied. Wilander couldn't even get to the semis at Wimbledon, yet made 3 finals on AO grass(winning 2). Becker won Wimbledon in '85/'86, yet lost early at the AO on grass in '85, '87.

Wilander played Zivojinovic at both Wimbledon & the AO in 1985. He lost to him at Wimbledon & beat him at the Australian. Wonder if the different grass was a factor in those results, I'm sure they thought so.
I think it was in 1987 that Becker, during the 1987 AO, said that the center court made him feel 5 feet tall, when he was serving from the end that was lower. I'm not saying this had anything to do with Martina, but it seems to have affected the men with huge first serves -- of which Sampras was certainly one.
 

CyBorg

Legend
That and don't forget the fact that Aussie simply didn't mean as much as Wimbledon and still doesn't.

Sampras won there twice and I doubt he put in as much preparation into winning it a third time as he did at the other three slams. Twice was enough. He knew it.
 

NLBwell

Legend
Where did you get the information on who Sampras and Borg played in the early rounds at Wimbledon? I was looking for information like that.
 

CyBorg

Legend
Where did you get the information on who Sampras and Borg played in the early rounds at Wimbledon? I was looking for information like that.

go to www.atptennis.com and 'players'. Thereafter you just need to search for the player's name and his profile appears. There you just need to go to 'playing activity'. The info goes back to 1973 only, so it's missing Borg's first major - the 1972 US Open. If you need info for that let me know.
 

NLBwell

Legend
Looked up Laver's record in 73/74 Laver did not play any of the majors in 74 -
Everyone speculates whether Connors would have won the French in 74 - Laver could have won it. He was 2-1 vs. Borg through 73-74 including beating him on Red Clay in Houston.
Though Connors wiped out Rosewall in the finals of the US Open and Wimbledon which everyone remembers, he had 5 setters against Syd Ball (Laver Record 0-0), Jan Kodes (5-2), and Phil Dent (3-1) in Austrailia and Wimbledon - guys who Laver would be expected to beat. Maybe Connors won those because Laver didn't play. [They played on competing circuits, so they never played each other in that time period]
Also, for those who think the modern serve would hurt Laver, he had commanding records vs. Roscoe Tanner, Colin Dibley, and Phil Dent. The first two hit the serve harder than anyone playing now except Roddick and Guccione -145 mph on the non-juiced radar gun. Don't think Laver would've have much trouble with Taylor Dent, since Phil was a better player. (well, a lot of guys don't have much trouble with Taylor Dent)
 

herosol

Professional
hmm. you cant say someone is just as good because they almost could've won

you either win or don't win.
that separates the champions from everyone else.

btw: can't compare what happened 30 years ago to now.

things have changed.
 

krosero

Legend
Looked up Laver's record in 73/74 Laver did not play any of the majors in 74 -
Everyone speculates whether Connors would have won the French in 74 - Laver could have won it. He was 2-1 vs. Borg through 73-74 including beating him on Red Clay in Houston.
Though Connors wiped out Rosewall in the finals of the US Open and Wimbledon which everyone remembers, he had 5 setters against Syd Ball (Laver Record 0-0), Jan Kodes (5-2), and Phil Dent (3-1) in Austrailia and Wimbledon - guys who Laver would be expected to beat. Maybe Connors won those because Laver didn't play.
After Connors won either Wimbledon or the USO in 1974, he reportedly went to his promotor, Bill Riordan, and said, "Get me Laver." So Riordan set up a Challenge Match between them in Las Vegas that took place the following spring, which Connors won in four sets.
 

tennishead93

Semi-Pro
annoying

its so annoying that ppl are saying laver is the best. in his time 3/4 of the yr slam were played on grass and none of the 4 were on clay!!!!!
 

Rabbit

G.O.A.T.
its so annoying that ppl are saying laver is the best. in his time 3/4 of the yr slam were played on grass and none of the 4 were on clay!!!!!

Do what? Ever heard of Roland Garos? It was played on clay when Laver won it, twice....

And, I dare say that the 4 surfaces they have now probably play more like each other than the surfaces that Laver competed on then.

There is a reason "they say" Laver is the greatest....it's true.
 

tennishead93

Semi-Pro
what! 3 /4 were grass. have u heard of a high bouncing court made up of mashed up tires, a grass court, clay, and hard. they arer a lot differnet than just grass
 
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