The Value of an Olympic Gold Medal?

What value do you put on an Olympic Gold Medal when judging a career?

  • Above a Slam

    Votes: 6 8.0%
  • A Slam

    Votes: 6 8.0%
  • Above a WTF

    Votes: 24 32.0%
  • Same as WTF

    Votes: 12 16.0%
  • Above a Masters

    Votes: 15 20.0%
  • Same as Masters

    Votes: 7 9.3%
  • Below a Masters

    Votes: 5 6.7%

  • Total voters
    75

BGod

Legend
From a career point of view for you, the fan.

When the ATP awarded points, it was 750. Less than a Masters but also with the perspective that a player would lose all those points without the ability to defend them so it couldn't be too high.

I think there's something to be said about the draw being 64 with no BYEs with no 3rd set tiebreaker and the title match is Best of 5 sets. Adding to that, it typically has majority participation from top ranked players and occurs once every 4 years. I mean, there are 4 Slams every year so literally for every 16 Slam tournaments there is one Olympic draw. Even in 2016 when the ATP awarded no points and the health concerns in Brazil resulted in many players skipping it had the #1-2, 5-8 players, Federer had skip because of injury and additional 6 players from 11-20. Also the finalist del Potro's ranking was due to missed time due to injury as he would make the USO quarterfinal shortly after. So the tournament itself hasn't produced anything close to a typical ATP 500 event. As such the poll's lowest option is below a Masters.

Olympic Gold Medalists Men
Mecir
Rosset
Agassi
Kafelnikov
Massu
Nadal
Murray
Murray

Olympic Gold Medalists Women
Graf
Capriati
Davenport
V. Williams
Henin-Hardenne
Dementieva
S. Williams
Puig


To me that's a better list than WTF champions but that's me.
 

BGod

Legend
The Olympic Gold in singles has the same value as the ATP finals (It's not called "WTF" anymore).

Category of tennis tournaments:

Grand Slams (Tier A)
ATP finals/Olympics (Tier B)
Masters 1000 (Tier C)
ATP 500 (Tier D)
ATP 250 (Tier E)
Where I disconnect with the WTF and Olympics is WTF can win with a loss, there IS a 3rd set tiebreak and of course no Bo5 anymore. Granted you still have the argument a player has to win at least 4 matches against a Top 8 player but sometimes they play the same player twice and the Olympic set-up often means at least 3 tough matches for the title while needing a Bo5 set again. The frequency of the WTF (4 to 1) is the final point I can make. IF there were point totals I agree I'd probably have the Olympics given 1,500 not like 1,600 but in terms of careers I look at for example Murray's 2 Golds worth more than 2 WTFs.

I'm an old hag I'll continue calling it WTF until nobody knows what I mean.
 
Glorified masters same as the YEC, lawwwwwl. I may accept 1992/2008/12/16 as being close to the YEC due to a BO5-heavier format (1992 was full BO5 like a slam, 08-16 retained a BO5 final when YEC did not), but now that lolympix is demoted to basic BO3, it's worse than IW/Miami cumpetishun-wise, only the happy meal, sorry medal, brings it artificial value.
 

Rattler

Hall of Fame
I don’t know the value per say, but I did get to hold two gold medals won by the American quad wheelchair doubles team. They may have played in the Special Olympics but the medals are identical to able bodied awards. They were heavier than you’d expect.
 

bluetrain4

G.O.A.T.
I'm in in the minority, but I've always thought the Olympic tennis tournament was essentially BS in terms of how much it "counts" - with the 64 draw but per country player restrictions, it's really less than a Masters. It's not the most important achievement in the sport, and it's simply coattailing on the prestige of the Olympics in general.

But, I'm not stupid - it's become a bigger and bigger deal rather quickly. And I understand why. Because The Olympics is a global brand that everyone recognizes. Olympic Gold is a sporting achievement that a 5-year old could tell you was a big deal. Non-tennis fans would instantly be impressed by a player having an Olympic gold, no matter what the format, how many participants, or the rankings of the participants -- probably more impressed than a player winning, for example, an Australian Open title. Tennis having a spot within that brand has created a tennis achievement that I think is more prestigious than it actually should be. But, I know most others don't and will never see it that way. It can actually stand on its own as a general sporting achievement, not specifically a tennis achievement. You can talk about it relative to Slams and Masters, but only tennis fans will but it in that context. General observers will just see it first in the Olympic context and think Capriati, Graf, Murray, Agassi (just to name a few) have achieved the same thing as Michael Phelps, Usain Bolt, Nadia Comenici - or any other Olympic champion in any sport that they hold in high regard. That's the power of "Olympic Gold" even if the tournament itself is very "meh" for a tennis tournament.
 
Last edited:

Mike Sams

Legend
The Olympics are a joke. 90% of the sports played at the Olympics consist of broke athletes playing sports that have zero mainstream coverage and no real audience. Who the hell watches handball or field hockey or synchronized swimming or amateur wrestling? LOL Garbage!
 

Mr.Lob

Legend
I'd say above a masters. But it would need to be in singles.

A gold in doubles would be a 500 tourney equivalent.
 

TMF

Talk Tennis Guru
Depends on if Federer and Djokovic win Olympic singles gold or not.

At the moment, Olympics is on par with a 250.
All gold medals have the same value in the Olympic. Djokovic is only 1 of the big 4 who is not a gold medalist.
 

clout

Hall of Fame
I’d have to rate it quite high as it’s probably the most famous sporting event in the world (besides maybe the World Cup). Also I think some people don’t understand how much pride these athletes take in getting the opportunity to officially rep their nation on an international stage. In these events pro athletes are no longer just playing for themselves or their team but now they’re playing with their whole country on their backs. When an athlete wins in something like the Olympics, it makes the whole country feel like winners.

As a Canadian, watching our Olympic hockey team win gold made our entire population feel like champs for months haha
 

Le Master

Professional
It has different subjective values for each player, but it has zero value as far as applying it to a player’s achievements since zero points are awarded for winning it. There’s no arguing around that either.
 

titoelcolombiano

Hall of Fame
Of course, according to the ATP the WTF is the 5th biggest tournament. But winning an Olympic Gold medal is one of those things that will get listed in a career highlights reel before a WTF is mentioned. Major achievements in Tennis are pretty much slams and the number 1 ranking, everything else is secondary, but the Olympic Gold medal holds weight because of the esteem the Olympic Games are held in.
 

PMChambers

Hall of Fame
Below some masters above others.

Depends if your a sports fan or tennis fan. Or specific sport fan. Most professional sports have bigger events, cycling, tennis, basketball, baseball, tennis, etc. With current 0 pt it's likely to become meh again.
 

BeatlesFan

Talk Tennis Guru
They're probably better or at least as good as some of these past WTF champions:

Nastase
Smith
Orantes
Corretja
Nalbandian
Davydenko
Dimitrov
Zverev
Tsitsipas
That’s not what he said, however. My point stands: no OGM list of winners comes anywhere close to the greats who have won the WTF. And Stan Smith won 2 slams and ranked #1, he was a great player.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
That’s not what he said, however. My point stands: no OGM list of winners comes anywhere close to the greats who have won the WTF. And Stan Smith won 2 slams and ranked #1, he was a great player.
You are trying to diminish the significance of the OGM by citing past winners you don't think worthy. As I point out, every single tennis event including the Slams is full of players who accomplished little else so that simply won't work.

Plus it's true that Stan Smith won 2 Slams but then so did Kafelnikov also ranked #1 who figures in your list! For every Mecir and Massu there is also a Gaudio, Johansson or Costa in the Slams and a Corretja, Nalbandian, Davydenko, Dimi or Zverev in the WTF. That's my point.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
Ask Federer or Djokovic which they choose?
3 Masters or a Olímpic Gold? You will be surprised.
Djokovic said that the 2020 Olimpics is his priority for this year!
Gotta scratch that itch, plug that gap.

When George Mallory was asked why he was so keen to climb Mount Everest he replied, "Because it is there!"
 

hoodjem

G.O.A.T.
Gotta scratch that itch, plug that gap.

When George Mallory was asked why he was so keen to climb Mount Everest he replied, "Because it is there!"
And when Tenzing Norgay was asked the same question, he said "Because George was paying me to carry all his crap."
 
Last edited:
For me I think it's every bit on par with a slam if not viewed as slightly better just for the rareness of chances you have to take home a gold with it only being available every 4 years. All the best players in the world are typically are playing in it this century (Rio aside for health reasons) and you represent your country in an event with all the best athletes in the world that only comes around every 4 years. How is that not of extreme value on the resume for a career with what it represents.

Even if you play 20+ years like Fed you might only get 4 or 5 chances at a gold and really probably only a couple chances when you are actually in your prime. I think there was enoumous pressure on him to win one to cap off his resume and he couldn't so I do think it goes down as a strike on an otherwise brilliant career. It's certainly way better than the Masters and WTF I think for sure. I'd probably even trade a slam if I had a bunch for a Gold if I didn't have it just to complete having one of every big thing.
 
Last edited:

TMF

Talk Tennis Guru
Rafa said on Wednesday: "The Olympics is the most important event in the world of sport (from 7:44 - 8:56 in the video)":

That's just his opinion.

Sampras skipped the 1996 Olympic and focus on playing small events in his country.
 

KG1965

Legend
That's just his opinion.

Sampras skipped the 1996 Olympic and focus on playing small events in his country.
Pete chose well. Much better to skip the useless Gold and try to win the Canada Open and Cincy.

-Sampras, - Muster, - Chang, - Krajiceck, - Rios, - Martin ...
A joke...Master 500.
 

Red Rick

Talk Tennis Guru
So you think these guys:

Mecir
Rosset
Agassi
Kafelnikov
Massu
Nadal
Murray


are better than past WTF champions? Here are some of them:

Mac
Connors
Lendl
Agassi
Becker
Sampras
Fed
Djokovic
Edberg
Dimitrov
Zverev
Tsitsipas
Davydenko
Nalbandian
 
Pete chose well. Much better to skip the useless Gold and try to win the Canada Open and Cincy.

-Sampras, - Muster, - Chang, - Krajiceck, - Rios, - Martin ...
A joke...Master 500.
Serious? The guy skipped the Olympics in his home country. He obviously had no vision about what it would ultimately mean to a legacy for most people. If we are just looking for a payday I wonder how many more endorsement deals Agassi got just for showing up much less from winning that gold medal. Look at these NBA players worth 200+ million that still show up, it's hugely important just for their brand and they aren't even competing on an individual basis like the big 3 and others are trying to compile resumes and legacies to compare to each other. Olympics is a big one and a pretty obvious differentiator that's rare and you don't get but so many opportunities at.
 
I'm in in the minority, but I've always thought the Olympic tennis tournament was essentially BS in terms of how much it "counts" - with the 64 draw but per country player restrictions, it's really less than a Masters. It's not the most important achievement in the sport, and it's simply coattailing on the prestige of the Olympics in general.

But, I'm not stupid - it's become a bigger and bigger deal rather quickly. And I understand why. Because The Olympics is a global brand that everyone recognizes. Olympic Gold is a sporting achievement that a 5-year old could tell you was a big deal. Non-tennis fans would instantly be impressed by a player having an Olympic gold, no matter what the format, how many participants, or the rankings of the participants -- probably more impressed than a player winning, for example, an Australian Open title. Tennis having a spot within that brand has created a tennis achievement that I think is more prestigious than it actually should be. But, I know most others don't and will never see it that way. It can actually stand on its own as a general sporting achievement, not specifically a tennis achievement. You can talk about it relative to Slams and Masters, but only tennis fans will but it in that context. General observers will just see it first in the Olympic context and think Capriati, Graf, Murray, Agassi (just to name a few) have achieved the same thing as Michael Phelps, Usain Bolt, Nadia Comenici - or any other Olympic champion in any sport that they hold in high regard. That's the power of "Olympic Gold" even if the tournament itself is very "meh" for a tennis tournament.
Who cares if it's a 64 draw if all the top players are in it. WTF has like 8. What great players are really excluded by the country restrictions? The US is a country of 330 million or whatever where maybe that should be a real issue but we've sucked for years at producing tennis players despite the population so that's not an issue and it's not like one country has just dominated the talent field really like the USA has mostly done in basketball for example. Even then that doesn't mean it's a sure thing they win.

Players skip some masters even when they are healthy. I don't think the top players have been skipping the Olympics for a long time. Maybe if they are hurt or something but that's a lot of tournys and slams too.
 

bluetrain4

G.O.A.T.
Who cares if it's a 64 draw if all the top players are in it. WTF has like 8. What great players are really excluded by the country restrictions? The US is a country of 330 million or whatever where maybe that should be a real issue but we've sucked for years at producing tennis players despite the population so that's not an issue and it's not like one country has just dominated the talent field really like the USA has mostly done in basketball for example. Even then that doesn't mean it's a sure thing they win.

Players skip some masters even when they are healthy. I don't think the top players have been skipping the Olympics for a long time. Maybe if they are hurt or something but that's a lot of tournys and slams too.
That was entire point of my post - no one cares because it's the Olympics. Still not a great tournament, IMO - but a fantastic prize - Olympic Gold.
 
Top