Most talented player of all time

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by pc1, Apr 9, 2009.

  1. Tshooter

    Tshooter Hall of Fame

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    Well worth reviving my post. :rolleyes:

    And duly noted.

    Someone else around here keeps the official talent ranking list so it's not my call. :(
     
  2. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    Did I respond to a post from 5 years ago, again?
     
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  3. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    Yup, the fact that Gonzalez was self taught and reached the pinnacle of the sport for the better part of a decade is just incredible. Gonzalez wasn't known for his backhand, but maybe the only thing separating him from having an ATG stroke was decent coaching when he was a youngster :eek:. I do believe Tilden, Vines, Hoad and Laver either due to their stroke production, champions mind or athletic ability (perhaps a combination of all) would be incredibly strong players in the modern era with the technology and training - however Gonzalez might perhaps have even more potential still.
     
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  4. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    The Gonzalez story is truly amazing. He was a great tennis player who was also a great athlete. He was very smooth and moved extremely well with great touch yet he could turn on the power if needed with his great powerful serve and forehand which was timed (with the primitive devices of the 1950s) at 112.88 mph followed by Jack Kramer at 107.8. Segura incidentally wasn't timed in this pro event in 1951.

    I would add some of the more modern players for talent in Sampras, Borg, Connors (for his pure stroking ability), Federer, Nadal, Murray, Leconte, del Potro, Mecir, Lendl, Agassi and Djokovic.
     
  5. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    We all do that at times.
     
  6. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    I think Sedgman, Hoad and Rosewall might disagree about Gonzalez' backhand. It was an all time great touch shot that he could hit with pace when needed.

    [​IMG]
     
  7. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    Great with touch and volley, he learnt to pass with it better around 1960 IIRC. But still not an all time great rally shot.
     
  8. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    I didn't mean to imply that Gonzalez had an all time great backhand passing shot. I'm not sure why you think Gonzalez improved his passing shot in 1960. He was hitting great chip/touch returns and throughout the 50's, and had a very good dtl passing shot. But, after returning, he didn't usually give his opponent much chance to make him hit a passing shot or rally shot. He usually chipped and charged and challenged his opponents at net.
     
  9. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    I recall reading that Gonzalez improved that shot to better deal with Hoad.
     
  10. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    He switch his backhand grip to allow him to hit better backhand crosscourt passing shots. I don't think he was a better player as some have indicated because he was about 30 at the time but perhaps his strokes were a little better.

    Incidentally Gonzalez did have an injury that caused him to lose some mph off his serve. Forgot the nature of the injury but his serve I believe wasn't of the same level as it was earlier even though it still was the best serve in tennis.
     
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  11. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    My point in this post was that Gonzalez, because of the injury was less talented than he was just a few years earlier imo. Forgot to mention that.
     
  12. NatF

    NatF Talk Tennis Guru

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    That was it. Never meant to imply Gonzalez was better at 30, was just making a point about his backhand.
     
  13. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    Never thought you imply that, however I think some have thought that which I disagree with.
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2016
  14. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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  15. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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  16. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    It was extraordinary that Gonzales could dominate Rosewall so thoroughly in spite of this injury to his wrist.
     
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  17. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    I think Gonzalez was simply too good to be stopped by Rosewall at that point despite the injury. What was particularly impressive to me was the tour victory over Rosewall, Olmedo and Segura in 1960 with an overall record of 49-8! Rosewall was second at 32-25.

    Actually Rosewall was very gifted in his own ways. Extraordinary reflexes, very quick, excellent touch, the ability to repeat strokes and a great pure hitter of the ball. That was for you Bobby.
     
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  18. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    Rosewall had extraordinary anticipation. He seemed to sense where opponents were going to hit the ball before they hit it.
     
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  19. George K

    George K New User

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    Most talented isn't the same as greatest. Nastase was extremely talented. As to his mental qualities, Ion Tiriac, his Davis Cup doubles partner described Nastase this way: "He's afraid to lose and afraid to win!" ..... not exactly a picture of mental toughness, is he.
     
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  20. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    Didn't Tony Trabert refer to Gonzalez as a big cat. That would make Gonzo the original big cat.
     
  21. Limpinhitter

    Limpinhitter G.O.A.T.

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    Thanks for the explanation, George. But, I don't think Nastase was quite as talented as the greats that I listed. That's why I didn't include him in my list.
     
  22. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    I felt Nastase didn't have the great power on his backhand that many great have.
     
  23. Dan Lobb

    Dan Lobb Hall of Fame

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    Rosewall was great day-to-day...where his record falls below the level of the greatest players is in the most important events, where raw power seemed to work against his great skills.
    Many spectators and commentators felt sorry for the Little Master on those occasions.
     
  24. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

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    On a subjective level that's one of the things Rosewall lacked, the huge power weapons when he needed it. He didn't have the serve and forehand of a Kramer, Gonzalez,Tilden, Federer, Vines, Sampras and Borg. Yes Rosewall could hit the ball with decent pace when he needed it but he never had the overwhelming power of the players I named above. He was vulnerable if a Hoad or Laver was using his power and was on his game. Laver once mentioned if he was playing well he would win against Rosewall. I think some lesser players like Kovacs could defeat Rosewall when on their games.

    Rosewall was always excellent but he didn't have the super super high gear some other greats had. However he may have been more consistently good than some.
     
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