List of Connors racquets throughout his career

Ciaron

Semi-Pro
I was wondering if anyone knows the series of racquets Jimmy C used . There was the obvious Wilson T2000 from the mid 70s to late 80s I think . What did he use before? Then he had that ghastly yellow mid size looking thing at the US Open. I think he now uses the Prince Mono 660? Cool
 

Brett69

Rookie
The T-2000 1972-84 Pro Staff 84-87 Slazenger Panther 87-89 Slazenger wide body 89-90 Estusa Aeromax 91-94 Prince Mono 94 - present
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
The T-2000 1972-84 Pro Staff 84-87 Slazenger Panther 87-89 Slazenger wide body 89-90 Estusa Aeromax 91-94 Prince Mono 94 - present
Connors only used the Pro Staff a little bit in 1984. He was back with the T-2000 until he switched to the Slazenger Panther Pro Ceramic. I'll never forget the match at the Lipton in 1986 where he flipped out playing Lendl and walked off the court.
 
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Brett69

Rookie
Connors only used the Pro Staff a little bit in 1984. He was back with the T-2000 until he switched to the Slazenger Panther Pro Ceramic. I'll never forget the match at the Lipton in 1986 where he flipped out playing Lendl and walked off the court.
Actually, he went back and forth between the Pro Staff and the T-2000 during that period between 84 and 87. You can YouTube clips and see Connors using the Pro Staff as early as the 84 US Open. He was also using it at the 87 Lipton.
 

Ciaron

Semi-Pro
I wonder if the Prince Mono is the closest to the T2000 in design . Different materials and a larger head size sure but similar badminton racquet look
 

Brett69

Rookie
I wonder if the Prince Mono is the closest to the T2000 in design . Different materials and a larger head size sure but similar badminton racquet look
It's a horrible racket. The idea that he's continued to use it 20 years after Prince stopped producing it is puzzling. There's so many good frames out there. The Mono was an ugly frame that was poorly received by the public. I believe Prince discontinued it after 1 year.
 

BorgCash

Legend
I think he uses Mono may be because it is a little similar with his lovely T2000, the racquet is very difficult to play for common players, but not for Jimbo with his unique style.
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
Actually, he went back and forth between the Pro Staff and the T-2000 during that period between 84 and 87. You can YouTube clips and see Connors using the Pro Staff as early as the 84 US Open. He was also using it at the 87 Lipton.
Actually that was a Black Slazenger Panther Pro at Lipton in 1987. He used the Pro Staff at the US Open and Davis Cup in 1984 and did not use it much after that. At all the slams it was his T-2000 until 1987 when he switched to Slazenger.
 
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DUROC

Professional
Actually that was a Black Slazenger Panther Pro at Lipton in 1987. He used the Pro Staff at the US Open and Davis Cup in 1984 and did not use it much after that. At all the slams it was his T-2000 until 1987 when he switched to Slazenger.
And just as the PS was released he used a prototype that was never put into regular production. Painted to look exactly like the PS85 but it had an almost completely round hoop and pretty flexible.
I strung a few during those mixed double matches with Evert in the early 80s.
 

dak95_00

Hall of Fame
It's a horrible racket. The idea that he's continued to use it 20 years after Prince stopped producing it is puzzling. There's so many good frames out there. The Mono was an ugly frame that was poorly received by the public. I believe Prince discontinued it after 1 year.
It's definitely not a horrible racquet. It's very easy to hit with control and power. I'm sure it wasn't received well because of its weird look. Players get used to their off hand helping in turning the racquet and the roundish mono shaft makes that difficult.

I balked at it when it came out. I actually just tried one for the first time last year on a whim and it has since become my main stick. I put down my i.Prestige MP XL for them because of the better overall feel and power. It's a very easy racquet to use from the baseline and attacking the net too.

Since I've hit with a few T2000s on a whim too, I can probably give some comparisons. They're both flexible and you can feel them bend. They're both 27". They can both generate powerfully flat shots but the Mono also has more access to spin.
 

Ciaron

Semi-Pro
It's a horrible racket. The idea that he's continued to use it 20 years after Prince stopped producing it is puzzling. There's so many good frames out there. The Mono was an ugly frame that was poorly received by the public. I believe Prince discontinued it after 1 year.
I funnily enough use the Mono. I was lucky enough to get one on the bay and then one from one of the tt members. I think I'm probably the only person who owns or at least uses the racquet in South Africa ha ha . It's a great racquet to volley with and slice the BH. Maybe not the best for the serve but I'm better off with this racquet than the more modern wide beam ones which I tend to hit on the frame when I kick serve and send the ball over the fence at 45 degrees
 

Brett69

Rookie
It's definitely not a horrible racquet. It's very easy to hit with control and power. I'm sure it wasn't received well because of its weird look. Players get used to their off hand helping in turning the racquet and the roundish mono shaft makes that difficult.

I balked at it when it came out. I actually just tried one for the first time last year on a whim and it has since become my main stick. I put down my i.Prestige MP XL for them because of the better overall feel and power. It's a very easy racquet to use from the baseline and attacking the net too.

Since I've hit with a few T2000s on a whim too, I can probably give some comparisons. They're both flexible and you can feel them bend. They're both 27". They can both generate powerfully flat shots but the Mono also has more access to spin.
It's a horrible racket (imo) I had one when it first came out. I couldn't get rid of it fast enough. It felt very unstable to me and it just looked silly. I had a pair of the yellow Estusa's that were stolen, along with the car they were in. That was my favorite Connors era racket.
I was a huge JC fan and miss seeing him play.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Actually, he went back and forth between the Pro Staff and the T-2000 during that period between 84 and 87. You can YouTube clips and see Connors using the Pro Staff as early as the 84 US Open. He was also using it at the 87 Lipton.
Here's a pic of Connors at the 1987 Lipton. That's not a Pro Staff 85 that he using, looks to be a blacked out Slazenger or a prototype of it.



Don't think Connors used the PS 85 very much after the fall of 1984.
 

Brett69

Rookie
Here's a pic of Connors at the 1987 Lipton. That's not a Pro Staff 85 that he using, looks to be a blacked out Slazenger or a prototype of it.



Don't think Connors used the PS 85 very much after the fall of 1984.
Interesting. I know he hated the PS and said it felt stiff as a board. He must have had an endorsement deal with Wilson that he had to respect. Maybe the reason it looks similar? Very thin beam on this frame whatever it is
 

DNShade

Hall of Fame
And just as the PS was released he used a prototype that was never put into regular production. Painted to look exactly like the PS85 but it had an almost completely round hoop and pretty flexible.
I strung a few during those mixed double matches with Evert in the early 80s.
He's playing with it here and they talk about it around 14 min.

 

BorgCash

Legend
Only Mr.Connors and may be some few other people know it. The fact is that the next racquet Jimmy played on regular basis after T2000 was Panther Pro Ceramic.
I have these two racquets, and played both. They're are very different racquets.
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
I think at Lipton he used Panther Pro Ceramic blacked out prototype. At Wimby he already played Panther with regular white paintjob.

Yes, Connors at Lipton and at the French Open was using the Slazenger Panther Pro Ceramic blacked out. Then at Wimbledon had the full white paint job of the Slazenger. I have a Slazenger Panther Pro Ceramic. Its the same mold as the Dunlop Black Max II, Silver Max, Max Competition, and other Dunlop frames that were made in West Germany.
 

BreakPoint

Bionic Poster
Only Mr.Connors and may be some few other people know it. The fact is that the next racquet Jimmy played on regular basis after T2000 was Panther Pro Ceramic.
I have these two racquets, and played both. They're are very different racquets.
So are Federer's Tour 90 and his RF97A. I think the top pros are good enough to use just about anything.
 

BorgCash

Legend
Yes, Connors at Lipton and at the French Open was using the Slazenger Panther Pro Ceramic blacked out. Then at Wimbledon had the full white paint job of the Slazenger. I have a Slazenger Panther Pro Ceramic. Its the same mold as the Dunlop Black Max II, Silver Max, Max Competition, and other Dunlop frames that were made in West Germany.
I also have Panther Pro Ceramic and i can hit quite comfortably with it, T-2000 is completely different story. It's very difficult to topspin with it.
 

Ciaron

Semi-Pro
I also have Panther Pro Ceramic and i can hit quite comfortably with it, T-2000 is completely different story. It's very difficult to topspin with it.
Which was fine for Connors' flat shots I reckon . Is that what his shot selection would be classified as ? Flat punch shots? I've seen him hit with a bit of side spin in the rare rally off the back hand but other than that both the FH and BH had similar results
 

BorgCash

Legend
Which was fine for Connors' flat shots I reckon . Is that what his shot selection would be classified as ? Flat punch shots? I've seen him hit with a bit of side spin in the rare rally off the back hand but other than that both the FH and BH had similar results
Yes, correct. And of course he continued to hit flat from both hands with new racquet, that was quite easy to topspin with.
 

DUROC

Professional
nice find.. i wonder why he didn't stick with that one..or why they didn't make a midsize version of the t2000..that would have seemed easy enough to do...
It was just a 1st gen prototype..........soft with an almost round hoop.........he also had layers and layers of lead tape (just like his T2000s) on them.

As for a midsize T2000.........it stopped selling.......Wilson and Lacoste both stopped the production because no one was buying the bloody things.
 

Sanglier

Semi-Pro
It was just a 1st gen prototype..........soft with an almost round hoop.........he also had layers and layers of lead tape (just like his T2000s) on them.
I never noticed this before, because I always assumed that it was a PS85. How very interesting!

Now that I've seen the video (too bad there aren't any close-up stills from that tournament available online, where we can have a clear view of that racquet), I am wondering if what he was wielding was a forerunner of the Reflex/Odyssey series. The smaller open throat, the slightly more rounded head, the softer feel - these are all features that distinguished the latter from the PS series. Plus, the PS 85 frame geometry was largely based on that of the Sting Mid (minus the stabilizer bar and slightly beefed up), which was already available in '83, so why would they make such a big change to the frame less than a year before the commercial release, only to change it back months later?

Is it possible that Wilson was developing a number of new frames in parallel, from the stiffer model that was on track to become the PS to a softer version that later became the Odyssey, and Connors happened to prefer the softy at that time, which was then painted to look like the PS for him to use in these tournaments? Does the racquet on the left resemble the ones you had strung?



My Odyssey Comp was made in 1988, likely by Long-Yi (rather than San Ho Sun). It may be one of the last Wilson models made without a bumper; something that was quickly becoming an anachronism by then. Perhaps Wilson was recycling their R&D materials from the early '80s, and decided to commercialize the prototype that Connors once preferred over the PS85? It may have been marketed as a cheapo racquet, but it is a buttery smooth frame; one of my all time favorites.

Incidentally, watching Chris Evert returning Roscoe Tanner's serves with her wooden racquet was the true highlight of the video for me. :)
 
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DUROC

Professional
No not at all like that series........if anthing it had a much more "pinched" throat. It was actually very close to the T2000 shape.

Also as a junior Jimbo used a Wilson Kramer auto until he first saw the T2000.
 

Sanglier

Semi-Pro
No not at all like that series........if anthing it had a much more "pinched" throat. It was actually very close to the T2000 shape.
You are absolutely right. I looked at the video more carefully; the long and narrow throat and the 18x18 string pattern are unique to this design, which doesn't appear to have had any counterpart among the production models:



Do you remember whether it had any taper in the beam like the Ultras, or was it a constant-beam design?

Someone somewhere must have kept one of these?!!
 

Ciaron

Semi-Pro
I never noticed this before, because I always assumed that it was a PS85. How very interesting!

Now that I've seen the video (too bad there aren't any close-up stills from that tournament available online, where we can have a clear view of that racquet), I am wondering if what he was wielding was a forerunner of the Reflex/Odyssey series. The smaller open throat, the slightly more rounded head, the softer feel - these are all features that distinguished the latter from the PS series. Plus, the PS 85 frame geometry was largely based on that of the Sting Mid (minus the stabilizer bar and slightly beefed up), which was already available in '83, so why would they make such a big change to the frame less than a year before the commercial release, only to change it back months later?

Is it possible that Wilson was developing a number of new frames in parallel, from the stiffer model that was on track to become the PS to a softer version that later became the Odyssey, and Connors happened to prefer the softy at that time, which was then painted to look like the PS for him to use in these tournaments? Does the racquet on the left resemble the ones you had strung?



My Odyssey Comp was made in 1988, likely by Long-Yi (rather than San Ho Sun). It may be one of the last Wilson models made without a bumper; something that was quickly becoming an anachronism by then. Perhaps Wilson was recycling their R&D materials from the early '80s, and decided to commercialize the prototype that Connors once preferred over the PS85? It may have been marketed as a cheapo racquet, but it is a buttery smooth frame; one of my all time favorites.

Incidentally, watching Chris Evert returning Roscoe Tanner's serves with her wooden racquet was the true highlight of the video for me. :)
I loved Chrissies 80s hair do ...
 

vsbabolat

G.O.A.T.
The racquet he used at the 1984 US Open and after look like a Pro Staff Midsize but with a more rounded head.

 

Crocodile

Hall of Fame
He had a white Slazrnger OMS ceramic graphite as mentioned further up in this thread and this racquet was made in Germany. He used a bright yellow racquet as well.
 

galain

Hall of Fame
Not sure if it's been mentioned in this thread, or if my memory is acting up, but was there ever a time when Jimbo was using a Wavex frame? A pink or neon pink stick?
 

BorgCash

Legend
TE="Crocodile, post: 10599426, member: 257068"]He had a white Slazrnger OMS ceramic graphite as mentioned further up in this thread and this racquet was made in Germany. He used a bright yellow racquet as well.[/QUOTE]
Bright yellow was Estusa
 
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