Peak Federer Vs. Peak Djokovic

Federer or Djokovic


  • Total voters
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Who displayed a higher level, in his peak? The era, they played in, or their h2h is irrelevant in this case. I'm talking solely, about the level of their game.

Common arguments include, that Roger had the h2h advantage in the beginning, and Novak could catch him only when he declined.

Others suggest, that Novak attained his peak level later. Hence, he managed to catch Fedal.

Personally, I believe, that neither Federer nor Djokovic competed against each other, while being at their peak level.

''Peak'' here, refers to their highest quality of tennis, sustained for a period of time. I think, that in the beginning of their encounters, post 2008, there were glimpses of high level matches. But, more often than not, Novak couldn't sustain his highest level for the longest period of time.

So, there were a few matches, when young Novak, may have played at an extremely high level, but they were rare. When Novak, truly became consistent(in terms of level), Federer declined.

So, while we may have had, both competing at their peak level, the sample size is too small, to necessarily judge. There is no clear 200% answer.

So please, avoid giving extreme answers like Novak wins by a landslide, or Roger thrashes him. It may well be possible, that their level approximately matches.

Many former greats, themselves appear to be split over the verdict(not that it matters). So, you're not doing a favor, by acting like the answer is obvious.

This thread, mainly relates to the technical aspects of their game. Mainly, your opinion on their level.

Also, I realize that they're many threads, on Fed - Djokovic. So, if you're sick of these threads, then don't waste your time on online forums. Do your homework, or respond to other threads.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
I think that Federer's overall level was slightly higher -- although I don't feel Djokovic is a joke. When I talk about the field, I am not saying Novak is a bad player. Far from it, he's a great player -- but it's like the field don't even wanna fight him at this point.
 
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Deleted member 307496

Guest
Nole of course.

Federer is the most technically aesthetic player, which has people confused.
Nole has the best forehand + backhand combination. Federer's forehand was a more deadly shot but Nole's more complete from the baseline. I feel the serve is the determining point here though, and I'd have to give the edge to Federer. It's close though but I do feel Federer was slightly better at his best.
 
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nowhereman

Guest
Fed-****s: Federer's peak is the highest level ever seen. Djokovic gets pushed hard by 34 year old Federer, peak Federer would crush him easily.

*********s: Federer played in a weak era during his peak, it's highly overrated. He never played against someone like Djokovic at his peak, he only looked good because he got to feast on mugs like Roddick and Hewitt. Peak Djokovic would expose him for the fraud he is.

There, I just summed up both fan bases' arguments. No need for any more replies.
 
Nole has the best forehand + backhand combination. Federer's forehand was a more deadly shot but Nole's more complete from the baseline. I feel the serve is the determining point here though, and I'd have to give the edge to Federer. It's close though but I do feel Federer was slightly better at his best.
I think Steve0904 made a good point though that the most important combo in modern mens tennis is the serve + forehand one and Fed is clearly ahead here. Even if Djokovic is probably ahead of Federer in both the forehand + backhand and serve + return (and of course easily on the return + backhand) combos.
 

PeterHo

Hall of Fame
Equal, or very close.

The fact is that their dominant years had similar stats. Both also had a long match win streak.

The difference may be, that 2011 nole dominated nadal. Fed didn't do that in his peak, while both dominated everybody else.
 

PeterHo

Hall of Fame
I think Steve0904 made a good point though that the most important combo in modern mens tennis is the serve + forehand one and Fed is clearly ahead here. Even if Djokovic is probably ahead of Federer in both the forehand + backhand and serve + return (and of course easily on the return + backhand) combos.

I think that was the most important combo up to and ended with federer. The last two ATG players we've seen didnt have the greatest serves (Nole and nadal).

While there is one thing in common for the last two ATGs, ie. Defence.
 

Bilders

Semi-Pro
How about some new material, such as "Who do you think digests there food more efficiently, Roger or Novak?". Strong case for Novak on this one as the gluten-free diet means less bloating and thus a greater chance at being the digestive GOAT.
 
I think that was the most important combo up to and ended with federer. The last two ATG players we've seen didnt have the greatest serves (Nole and nadal).

While there is one thing in common for the last two ATGs, ie. Defence.
Well I still think the most important shot combo in the modern game is absolutely serve + forehand. Now you could make an argument the most important aspect (as opposed to just shot(s)) is speed and overall defense. Thinking about the greatest players of the last 10 years- Fed, Rafa, Djokovic, Murray, Hewitt, even Ferrer who has been the regular 5th guy for awhile, what do they all have in common?
 

PeterHo

Hall of Fame
Well I still think the most important shot combo in the modern game is absolutely serve + forehand. Now you could make an argument the most important aspect (as opposed to just shot(s)) is speed and overall defense. Thinking about the greatest players of the last 10 years- Fed, Rafa, Djokovic, Murray, Hewitt, even Ferrer who has been the regular 5th guy for awhile, what do they all have in common?
The serve fh combo was most successful only becoz players had relatively poor backhands, and to an extent, poor return games.

Whats stopping a player from having a serve bh combo and be the most successful? Also with the return shot?

Serve and fh is fast becoming history so i wouldn't say its the most "successful" in the modern game. Its still the most effective combo of trying to finish a point, but not the best in terms of trying to win the point. That's becoz most points are won through rallies now.

Players used to get away with subpar backhands and still win majors. I think the modern game requires at least a top 10 bh.

The most successful "combo" in the past five years has been relentless backhand to backhand exchanges. The backhand gives players the advantage in court positioning and the fh is used to finish the point. Plenty more of novak murray finals in the next few years.
 
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Alien

Hall of Fame
You have all previous pros like Gilbert sating tennis is much more physical now. You have Toni saying it is way faster thab before. We all know ten years is a lot for a sport, and evolution certainly raises level of the game.

Then you mantain that Federer supposed peak (which is not because he kept learning) ten years ago is at least as high as Djokovic's.

People claiming so has to believe that Sampras level was at least at same level as Federer's. Well certainly not.

You are being delusional. I live Federer tennis, technique, ability.

But I have never seen tennis as Nole is showing.
 
The serve fh combo was most successful only becoz players had relatively poor backhands, and to an extent, poor return games.

Whats stopping a player from having a serve bh combo and be the most successful? Also with the return shot?

Serve and fh is fast becoming history so i wouldn't say its the most "successful" in the modern game. Its still the most effective combo of trying to finish a point, but not the best in terms of trying to win the point. That's becoz most points are won through rallies now.

Players used to get away with subpar backhands and still win majors. I think the modern game requires at least a top 10 bh.

The most successful "combo" in the past five years has been relentless backhand to backhand exchanges. The backhand gives players the advantage in court positioning and the fh is used to finish the point. Plenty more of novak murray finals in the next few years.
I dont know. I think the best forehands will always be better shots than the best backhands, and the serve will always be the hardest shot to return when struck well. I think the serve-forehand combo will always be the most important one still, although you do make some good points. FWIW Djokovic has one of the best serve-forehand combos today (and with the visible decline in Federer's forehand from his absolute peak years, not much difference between the two even in that today).

Remember in the earlier time you are discussing you had Nalbandian, Agassi, Safin, Haas, Kuerten, all at their best. The game hardly lacked in great backhands then either.
 
I picked Federer since I think his peak level on grass and faster hard courts (and possibly indoors) is probably still higher, and on clay or slower hard courts it is pretty close. Djokovic is clearly above Federer on slow hard courts now (both greater and better IMO), but just peak playing level would still be relatively equal IMO, but Djokovic is far more consistent in producing it there than even peak Roger.
 
Depends how you define higher level. While we the internet denizens presume to be able to judge with ease the differences in level of these great champions, it's very, very close and seemingly small factors make the difference. Which is why, for instance, it's often said that either of the two players (the losing one) wasn't playing their best when they played each other in a big final. Two exceptions to this that immediately come to mind are Nadal in the Nadal-Djoko AO 2012 final and, likewise, Djoko in the RG final later that year (this one being closer than the scoreline suggested). But yeah, say Fed was past his best in his match against Nole in 2011 USO while Nadal was not yet at his best against Fed in W 2007, so on and so forth. So...if you define higher level as more aggressive strokeplay, it was clearly Federer from 2004 to 2006 (actually up to AO 2007, which was the apex). If you define higher level as a brutal combination of physicality and accuracy, it was Nole mainly in 2011 and 2015 but also in parts of 2012 as well as W 2014.Those are their respective strengths and as mentioned in the OP, there is a lack of peak-to-peak matches between them to know how the clash of these opposing styles would pan out. History suggests the match up favours Fed on the latter two slams and Nole in the 'slow' slams. But it's really not so cut and dry between the two either way (i.e. not only Nole at his best would be capable of taking the fight to Fed at W/USO but Fed too would take it to him on clay as well as slow hard).
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
Depends how you define higher level. While we the internet denizens presume to be able to judge with ease the differences in level of these great champions, it's very, very close and seemingly small factors make the difference. Which is why, for instance, it's often said that either of the two players (the losing one) wasn't playing their best when they played each other in a big final. Two exceptions to this that immediately come to mind are Nadal in the Nadal-Djoko AO 2012 final and, likewise, Djoko in the RG final later that year (this one being closer than the scoreline suggested). But yeah, say Fed was past his best in his match against Nole in 2011 USO while Nadal was not yet at his best against Fed in W 2007, so on and so forth. So...if you define higher level as more aggressive strokeplay, it was clearly Federer from 2004 to 2006 (actually up to AO 2007, which was the apex). If you define higher level as a brutal combination of physicality and accuracy, it was Nole mainly in 2011 and 2015 but also in parts of 2012 as well as W 2014.Those are their respective strengths and as mentioned in the OP, there is a lack of peak-to-peak matches between them to know how the clash of these opposing styles would pan out. History suggests the match up favours Fed on the latter two slams and Nole in the 'slow' slams. But it's really not so cut and dry between the two either way (i.e. not only Nole at his best would be capable of taking the fight to Fed at W/USO but Fed too would take it to him on clay as well as slow hard).
umm, how does history suggest matchup favors Nole at RG ? his loss at RG 11 ? his failure to fend off wawrinka in 2015 while fed was able to fend off del potro in 2009 ?
 
umm, how does history suggest matchup favors Nole at RG ? his loss at RG 11 ? his failure to fend off wawrinka in 2015 while fed was able to fend off del potro in 2009 ?
Are you seriously saying Wawrinka in 2015 is only as good as Del Potro in 2009? Come on, you can do better than that.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
That is such a huge disagreement that I will simply agree to disagree and leave it at that.
you can disagree all you want. But the way the match went ( no BPs for federer until the beginning of the 4th set, del potro winning sets 1 and 3 by a double break etc. ) and the match stats will show otherwise.

In any case, there's no evidence to show RG favours djokovic in the matchup. the only match they played prime-prime level was RG 11 and federer took that.

and of course there's the tiny matter of federer actually having an RG vs zero for djokovic.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
Depends how you define higher level. While we the internet denizens presume to be able to judge with ease the differences in level of these great champions, it's very, very close and seemingly small factors make the difference. Which is why, for instance, it's often said that either of the two players (the losing one) wasn't playing their best when they played each other in a big final. Two exceptions to this that immediately come to mind are Nadal in the Nadal-Djoko AO 2012 final and, likewise, Djoko in the RG final later that year (this one being closer than the scoreline suggested). But yeah, say Fed was past his best in his match against Nole in 2011 USO while Nadal was not yet at his best against Fed in W 2007, so on and so forth.
AO 12 , nadal was playing well, but not his very best tennis

RG 12 final ? djokovic was getting dominated apart from the stretch of 8-9 games when it rained and conditions became heavy - that's when he dominated.

2007 W final nadal was just as good as 2008 W final nadal ( better from the baseline, worse on serve )

While I can somewhat understand AO 12 and 2007 W viewpoints, though I definitely do not not agree with it; saying 2012 RG final djokovic was close to his best is downright ridiculous.
 
saying 2012 RG final djokovic was close to his best is downright ridiculous.
That he was getting dominated by Nadal doesn't make him less than his best. I really don't see what Djokovic could have done differently in that match. Nadal was just too good, as always. At the most I would say Djoko started slowly but once he got going, he really gave Nadal a scare. But again, Nadal still won the 2nd set in spite of the level Djokovic produced.
 
V

VexlanderPrime

Guest
I wish there was a tagging feature, where I could tag everyone on this forum, and bring them all to these GOAT/Better Peak threads.
The mods could always just dump GOAT / Better Peak thread #635192 into one big dumpster fire thread where these guys could thunderdome it out day after day lol
 
In any case, there's no evidence to show RG favours djokovic in the matchup. the only match they played prime-prime level was RG 11 and federer took that.
Yeah, nevermind that the next year Nole beat the same Fed in straight sets who went on to win Wimbledon, right? I mean, you have to consider both matches. Neither matches were in Fed's prime but in the 2011 match, somewhat like last year at W against Murray, he turned the clock back whereas in 2012 he never got going. In any case I agree that there is no evidence from their head to head that clay would favour Djokovic and that is simply my conjecture based on their respective styles. The longer the match gets, the more it will favour Djokovic. But Fed can turn the tables on Djoko with his strokeplay as he did at RG 2011.

and of course there's the tiny matter of federer actually having an RG vs zero for djokovic.
Yeah, but Djokovic got much closer to beating a strong Nadal at RG, even if not the 2005-08 version. He was nearly there in 2013. Fed won RG fair and square, but only when Nadal wasn't there. I fear Nole may have lost his chance now but again it's not like Nole sucks at RG and Fed has a huge gap on him.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
That he was getting dominated by Nadal doesn't make him less than his best. I really don't see what Djokovic could have done differently in that match. Nadal was just too good, as always. At the most I would say Djoko started slowly but once he got going, he really gave Nadal a scare. But again, Nadal still won the 2nd set in spite of the level Djokovic produced.
how about playing better ?

djokovic was 10 W to 14 UEs in the 2nd set, broke nadal once and was broken by nadal thrice.
He served at 50% in that set, winning 47% points on first serve and second serve.

If that's the best djokovic can do, its not very good.

Nadal was too good and would've won regardless, but djokovic could've played better in the match --- apart from the stretch of 9 games from 0-2 in the 3rd set to 2-1 in the 4th set where he played great.

Apart from that stretch when conditions became heavy and djokovic won 8 out of the 9 games ; nadal won 20 games, djokovic won just 10 games ( 6-4, 6-3, 2-0, 6-3 -- in nadal's favour )
 
If that's the best djokovic can do, its not very good.

Nadal was too good and would've won regardless, but djokovic could've played better in the match --- apart from the stretch of 9 games from 0-2 in the 3rd set to 2-1 in the 4th set where he played great.

Apart from that stretch when conditions became heavy and djokovic won 8 out of the 9 games ; nadal won 20 games, djokovic won just 10 games ( 6-4, 6-3, 2-0, 6-3 -- in nadal's favour )
It's not like Fed fared better against Nadal at RG, though. So that's just Nadal. I don't really give any weight to the 2015 RG win for Nole over Nadal. Nadal at his best was too good for both these players, period. And yeah, without the rain, Nadal would have won more easily. Again, that's just how good Nadal was. Though he generally regressed in 2012 compared to 2011, he played better on clay throughout the 2012 season. At MC itself he gave the message to Nole that his RG dreams were to remain just that. Rain very nearly ruined the script but the suspension of play saved Nadal and on resumption, he finished it off.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
Yeah, nevermind that the next year Nole beat the same Fed in straight sets who went on to win Wimbledon, right? I mean, you have to consider both matches. Neither matches were in Fed's prime but in the 2011 match, somewhat like last year at W against Murray, he turned the clock back whereas in 2012 he never got going. In any case I agree that there is no evidence from their head to head that clay would favour Djokovic and that is simply my conjecture based on their respective styles. The longer the match gets, the more it will favour Djokovic. But Fed can turn the tables on Djoko with his strokeplay as he did at RG 2011.
2012 match is close to irrelevant if you want to see how it'd go prime to prime as federer played mediocre tennis.

2011 is very much relevant as both played at a very high level.

@ the bold part , that's my point..

history does not suggest the match up favours Nole at RG.


Yeah, but Djokovic got much closer to beating a strong Nadal at RG, even if not the 2005-08 version. He was nearly there in 2013. Fed won RG fair and square, but only when Nadal wasn't there. I fear Nole may have lost his chance now but again it's not like Nole sucks at RG and Fed has a huge gap on him.
yeah, but he didn't win, did he ? djokovic could've had his shot in 09 as well, but blew it vs kohli. Lost the chance he had in 15 as well. Argue based on conjecture of playing styles all you want ( I totally disagree with you btw, federer's a better CCer IMO and better player at RG in their matchup prime to prime ), but as for evidence, there isn't much in favour of djokovic at RG.
 
history does not suggest the match up favours Nole at RG.
You say that because you are looking only at the history of their head to head whereas I am looking at that of clay court tennis in general and am inclined to favour Nole's more grinding style of play.



yeah, but he didn't win, did he ? djokovic could've had his shot in 09 as well, but blew it vs kohli. Lost the chance he had in 15 as well. Argue based on conjecture of playing styles all you want ( I totally disagree with you btw, federer's a better CCer IMO and better played at RG in their matchup as well prime to prime ), but as for evidence, there isn't much in favour of djokovic at RG.
No more did I say there was. But if we are to bring evidence to the table, there isn't much to go by either way. One match that is close to prime to prime does not decide how their match up would pan out. There are simply not enough prime to prime matches between the two on any surface so evidence doesn't really help us very much at all in this discussion. So yes I will argue on conjecture all I want and you'll have to live with that.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
It's not like Fed fared better against Nadal at RG, though. So that's just Nadal. I don't really give any weight to the 2015 RG win for Nole over Nadal. Nadal at his best was too good for both these players, period. And yeah, without the rain, Nadal would have won more easily. Again, that's just how good Nadal was. Though he generally regressed in 2012 compared to 2011, he played better on clay throughout the 2012 season. At MC itself he gave the message to Nole that his RG dreams were to remain just that. Rain very nearly ruined the script but the suspension of play saved Nadal and on resumption, he finished it off.
yes, nadal was clearly better in 12 on clay than he was in 11. But that doesn't mean a djokovic who won 47% of his 1st serve and 2nd serve points on serve and got broken thrice in a set playing his best tennis. Not even close. Only that stretch of 9 games, he was playing his best tennis, but otherwise no.

He was better in the 11 SF vs federer and the 13 SF vs nadal as well.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
You say that because you are looking only at the history of their head to head whereas I am looking at that of clay court tennis in general and am inclined to favour Nole's more grinding style of play.


No more did I say there was. But if we are to bring evidence to the table, there isn't much to go by either way. One match that is close to prime to prime does not decide how their match up would pan out. There are simply not enough prime to prime matches between the two on any surface so evidence doesn't really help us very much at all in this discussion. So yes I will argue on conjecture all I want and you'll have to live with that.
Nope, I'm looking at their overall record and play at RG and not just that at their history of h2h, as should be evident by me posting : "federer's a better CCer IMO " and the clear mention of 1 RG for federer to 0 for djokovic and whatever happened in 09 and 15 RG.
 
So that doesn't mean a djokovic who won 47% of his 1st serve and 2nd serve points on serve and got broken thrice in a set playing his best tennis.
And Fed in 2006 lost a set 6-1 to Nadal in spite of having a better serve than Djokovic. The 2012 Nole didn't really get too many free points on his serve, so those stats are not surprising. Once he got into rallies, he was bound to be in trouble against Nadal. I would say he looked better in the 2013 SF simply because that was a more depleted version of Nadal. In 2013, he choked. In 2012 he showed a lot of spunk in spite of being up against the odds throughout the match. I guess he really thought he could win and when he couldn't, it dented his spirits a bit against Nadal at RG. Otherwise there's no explanation for why he lost in 2014.
 

Diehard

Semi-Pro
Who displayed a higher level, in his peak? The era, they played in, or their h2h is irrelevant in this case. I'm talking solely, about the level of their game.

Common arguments include, that Roger had the h2h advantage in the beginning, and Novak could catch him only when he declined.

Others suggest, that Novak attained his peak level later. Hence, he managed to catch Fedal.

Personally, I believe, that neither Federer nor Djokovic competed against each other, while being at their peak level.

''Peak'' here, refers to their highest quality of tennis, sustained for a period of time. I think, that in the beginning of their encounters, post 2008, there were glimpses of high level matches. But, more often than not, Novak couldn't sustain his highest level for the longest period of time.

So, there were a few matches, when young Novak, may have played at an extremely high level, but they were rare. When Novak, truly became consistent(in terms of level), Federer declined.

So, while we may have had, both competing at their peak level, the sample size is too small, to necessarily judge. There is no clear 200% answer.

So please, avoid giving extreme answers like Novak wins by a landslide, or Roger thrashes him. It may well be possible, that their level approximately matches.

Many former greats, themselves appear to be split over the verdict(not that it matters). So, you're not doing a favor, by acting like the answer is obvious.

This thread, mainly relates to the technical aspects of their game. Mainly, your opinion on their level.

Also, I realize that they're many threads, on Fed - Djokovic. So, if you're sick of these threads, then don't waste your time on online forums. Do your homework, or respond to other threads.
Nadal has answered this question I think at USO 2013 when he said djokovic is the best player he has ever faced. I think nadals opinion is more valid than any of ours
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
And Fed in 2006 lost a set 6-1 to Nadal in spite of having a better serve than Djokovic.

The 2012 Nole didn't really get too many free points on his serve, so those stats are not surprising. Once he got into rallies, he was bound to be in trouble against Nadal. I would say he looked better in the 2013 SF simply because that was a more depleted version of Nadal. In 2013, he choked. In 2012 he showed a lot of spunk in spite of being up against the odds throughout the match. I guess he really thought he could win and when he couldn't, it dented his spirits a bit against Nadal at RG. Otherwise there's no explanation for why he lost in 2014.
federer played a rubbish 2nd set in 06 RG final ( he had 19 UEs in that set ) and that match wasn't federer at his best. But you are insistent on saying djokovic played his best tennis in 12 RG. He didn't. That's my point.

Saying djokovic showed spunk is different from saying he played his best tennis, very different.
 
federer played a rubbish 2nd set in 06 RG final ( he had 19 UEs in that set ) and that match wasn't federer at his best. .
So which one was, of his matches against Nadal? When one player is so dominant on that surface, he is bound to open up a huge gap on his opponents, no matter that they too may be good players on the same surface. The bottomline is Fed's level in the 2006 final was good enough to have beaten any of his then rivals other than Nadal (obviously Djokovic being too young at that point wouldn't figure in the equation). Likewise Djokovic easily played well enough to have beaten anybody else in 2012, just wasn't good enough for Nadal. Now you can't say that about his 2014 loss, he just completely fell apart after the first set. Likewise Nadal didn't play very well in either his W or USO defeats to Djokovic in 2011. That is all I mean when I say 'best'. It doesn't mean Nole gets to play against Nadal the way he can against Ferrer; that's not happening.
 

abmk

Bionic Poster
So which one was, of his matches against Nadal? When one player is so dominant on that surface, he is bound to open up a huge gap on his opponents, no matter that they too may be good players on the same surface. The bottomline is Fed's level in the 2006 final was good enough to have beaten any of his then rivals other than Nadal (obviously Djokovic being too young at that point wouldn't figure in the equation). Likewise Djokovic easily played well enough to have beaten anybody else in 2012, just wasn't good enough for Nadal. Now you can't say that about his 2014 loss, he just completely fell apart after the first set. Likewise Nadal didn't play very well in either his W or USO defeats to Djokovic in 2011. That is all I mean when I say 'best'. It doesn't mean Nole gets to play against Nadal the way he can against Ferrer; that's not happening.
on clay ?

hamburg 07 final ( last 2 sets in particular ) , madrid 09 final , Rome 06 final

Bo5 match : obviously Rome 06 final

RG: 2007, 2011

I'm not talking about djokovic's level vs ferrer as compared to vs nadal.

I'm talking about what he's capable of vs nadal only. He's played better vs nadal himself in hamburg 08, madrid 09, rome 11, madrid 11, MC 13 and RG 13. I wasn't that impressed by his level vs nadal in 12 ( apart from the stretch of 9 games where he was spectacular ) .. granted nadal was better in 12 final than in any of these matches, but djokovic just looked overwhelmed by him ...
 

PeterHo

Hall of Fame
I dont know. I think the best forehands will always be better shots than the best backhands, and the serve will always be the hardest shot to return when struck well. I think the serve-forehand combo will always be the most important one still, although you do make some good points. FWIW Djokovic has one of the best serve-forehand combos today (and with the visible decline in Federer's forehand from his absolute peak years, not much difference between the two even in that today).

Remember in the earlier time you are discussing you had Nalbandian, Agassi, Safin, Haas, Kuerten, all at their best. The game hardly lacked in great backhands then either.
If i look at the bh, todays top 2 players definitely have better bhs than fhs, and if you look at top 4 theres 3 of them with better bhs! Their bhs are clearly the best in the game while fhs are barely top 10! Many top 30 guys can hit as good, or better forehands than novak, murray or stan.

As a pure shot the fh should be better, as to what combo is important i believe the bh... fh combo is now more prevalent in top tennis. In the 90s the most successful combo was serve and volley, while the 00s was serve and fh.

You named great players with great backhands, but none of them were the best players of their time. The bh was never as successful in the history of tennis than now, with 3 top 4 guys who excel at bhs. A year from now we are probably talking about all top 3 guys having better bhs than fhs!
 

every7

Hall of Fame
It is not even CLOSE!

PEAK Federer won a LOT.

He won MORE than PEAK Djokovic

And he made it LOOK GOOD!

All while elevating gentlemanly conduct, sportsmanship, on-court style and the profile of tennis to a level not seen since the 70's TV heyday.

Go back and have a look at the USO 2004 final. If it didn't look so graceful and fun to watch it would just be SCARY.
 

The Green Mile

Bionic Poster
My goodness, not only Peak Roddick, but Peak Federer also! 22 votes to 5 so far! Soon to be 23, as I finally make my decision.
 

guanzishou

Hall of Fame
Peak Federer built a Chalet in Valbella and lives happily ever after with his complete family eating chocolate, cheese and ice cream.

Peak Djokovic went for a retreat in Marbella to get all weird with Pepe eating gluten free broccoli and kale, hugging trees and stuff.
 

SinjinCooper

Hall of Fame
Peak Nole and Fed during his worst years have played to a virtual stalemate. Peak versus peak, Federer is better at everything you do on a tennis court except hit backhands, though Djokovic's backhand isn't really heavy enough to cause Fed's BH to break down.

Fed in a laugher.

But it's closer than their careers, where Federer is running laps around Novak.
 

BeatlesFan

Bionic Poster
Never forget that young Djoker beat peak Federer in the 2007 Canadian Open. I still watch that match on DVD and Djoker was impressive, winning it 7-6 in the third. But old Fed beat absolute peak Djoker in the 2011 FO, so that resonates too.

Peak Fed was sublime, beautiful and other-worldly. Peak Nole (2011) was ruthless and his mental strength was off the charts. The question is unfair, since 99% of Fed fans will vote for Roger and 100% of Djoker fans will take their guy.
 
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