Where do you point the blame for the mess tennis is in?

Who shoulders the lion's share of the blame?

  • The Tour

    Votes: 15 23.4%
  • Individual players

    Votes: 19 29.7%
  • Technology

    Votes: 16 25.0%
  • Tournament directors

    Votes: 13 20.3%
  • Decreasing attention spans

    Votes: 18 28.1%
  • (something else?)

    Votes: 20 31.3%

  • Total voters
    64
  • Poll closed .
#1
The game's in a real pickle.

Common knowledge at this point. Dwindling rec interest aside, there are a host of issues facing the pro tour now.

Does it stem from the outrageously ballooning major title tallies? Whether they're legit is another question entirely. But the fact that the tour spearheaded the initiative to inflate numbers and establish marketable rivalries against a rising tide of diversified entertainment options was fairly short-sighted.

This is going to be a very tough act to follow. At least a few folks got paid.

 
#3
-Technology
-overhyping of young players before they've done anything, or if they get one win over Fedalovic
-homogenizing of surfaces, decreasing the range of skills youngsters development
-the game becoming more physical and less technical.
-coaches at junior level prioritizing short term results over long term improvement.

There's various reasons
 
#5
-Technology
-overhyping of young players before they've done anything, or if they get one win over Fedalovic
-homogenizing of surfaces, decreasing the range of skills youngsters development
-the game becoming more physical and less technical.
-coaches at junior level prioritizing short term results over long term improvement.

There's various reasons
Do you foresee a resolution? Will future tennis bear at least some small resemblance to the game that we've come to know and love? :p

Seems as if we're set up to acclimate to a "new normal."

At least the records will remain intact, no? ;)
 

Red Rick

Talk Tennis Guru
#7
A lot of things

- Media overglorifying players to the point that all attention goes to them and that tennis stands and falls with them
- Poly strings changeing the junior game as well, which leads to more underdeveloped players after playing formative years with poly
- Other sports snatching away many better talents
- Big 3 being as good as they are/were. They set kinda ridiculous standards, made each other better, and only Murray could slightly keep up, the rest just has no self belief they can beat them when it matters, apart from Wawrinka occasinally drinking himself into believing he can beat Djokovic
- Social media. I blame social media a lot.
- Attention spans. Both of fans and of new players. Young players now have spent at least a decade of reading ******** about the players they're now supposed to beat. Developed terrible mentalities doing it
- Top heavy pay structures
- Overall funding and training structures of young players, with zero eye for long term improvement, and everything about making the moneyz now.
 

Mustard

Talk Tennis Guru
#12
Phasing out carpet until it vanished completely, and getting rid of best of 5 sets Masters finals. The former meant a decreasing variety on surfaces on the tour, while the latter meant that the big 2/3/4 could start monopolizing Masters events for a good number of years, shutting out competitors further from gaining confidence to challenge them.

Now, the key to the decision to scrap best of 5 sets Masters was the 2006 Italian Open final when Nadal beat Federer 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 2-6, 7-6, and then both of them pulled out of Hamburg where they had been scheduled to play. Nadal had also pulled out of Hamburg the previous year after his 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 win over Coria in the 2005 Italian Open final, although Coria did play Hamburg straight after. The last Masters final to be best of 5 sets was 2007 Miami, when Djokovic beat Canas.
 

OhYes

Hall of Fame
#13
- Media overglorifying players to the point that all attention goes to them and that tennis stands and falls with them
- Social media. I blame social media a lot.
- Attention spans. Both of fans and of new players. Young players now have spent at least a decade of reading ******** about the players they're now supposed to beat. Developed terrible mentalities doing it
These things...it had to backfire.
And we know how it started. :happydevil:
 

Red Rick

Talk Tennis Guru
#16
Phasing out carpet until it vanished completely, and getting rid of best of 5 sets Masters finals. The former meant a decreasing variety on surfaces on the tour, while the latter meant that the big 2/3/4 could start monopolizing Masters events for a good number of years, shutting out competitors further from gaining confidence to challenge them.

Now, the key to the decision to scrap best of 5 sets Masters was the 2006 Italian Open final when Nadal beat Federer 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 2-6, 7-6, and then both of them pulled out of Hamburg where they had been scheduled to play. Nadal had also pulled out of Hamburg the previous year after his 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 win over Coria in the 2005 Italian Open final, although Coria did play Hamburg straight after. The last Masters final to be best of 5 sets was 2007 Miami, when Djokovic beat Canas.
I swear Bo5 masters finals feels much longer ago and I am a bit mindblown to learn Djokovic even won one of them in Bo5.
 
#21
It's become a science. The team who can afford the best scientists win.

It was telling when Nadal withdrew from Brisbane that he said he took the advice from his doctors. He's travelling with more than one personal doctor whose job it is to monitor him? That's the impression I got.
 

Mainad

Bionic Poster
#22
Phasing out carpet until it vanished completely, and getting rid of best of 5 sets Masters finals. The former meant a decreasing variety on surfaces on the tour, while the latter meant that the big 2/3/4 could start monopolizing Masters events for a good number of years, shutting out competitors further from gaining confidence to challenge them.

Now, the key to the decision to scrap best of 5 sets Masters was the 2006 Italian Open final when Nadal beat Federer 6-7, 7-6, 6-4, 2-6, 7-6, and then both of them pulled out of Hamburg where they had been scheduled to play. Nadal had also pulled out of Hamburg the previous year after his 6-4, 3-6, 6-3, 4-6, 7-6 win over Coria in the 2005 Italian Open final, although Coria did play Hamburg straight after. The last Masters final to be best of 5 sets was 2007 Miami, when Djokovic beat Canas.
The scheduling must also take its share of the blame. Back to back 5 set Masters events was just ridiculous and it even is today despite being reduced to best of 3. Small wonder players play one and skip the other. Who wants to expend a lot of energy winning Indian Wells or Madrid or Canada only to be expected to fly straight to Miami, Rome or Cincinnati the day after and start all over again?
 
#24
Would the game be in a much better state if Zverev, Tsitsi, Coric etc were the leading pack of the game? I'm not so sure about that.

Fedalovic are titans of the game, and it wouldn't be the same without them. If they are gone the ratings and interest would drop until someone really special arrives again along with other ones. It's a big ask to succeed these guys.

It's not a coincidence that all three of them, still active, are the ones who have won most GS titles in the history of the sport. They are just that good that the youngsters can't make the breakthrough, my opinion.
 

OhYes

Hall of Fame
#26
Has nothing to do with Djoker.

I'm pleased as punch that he's scalped Nadal yet again. And as I've opined repeatedly, I find him admirable on many levels.

The issues I'm raising here are ones that I've voiced for a while.
One thing I hate are people who can't take sport as it is, but create havoc when things don't go their way.
What was thelast thread you made before this ?
Any gamesmanship anticipated? Implying Novak and Rafa will do something in final which goes with their character, etc
Stop being bitter Fedfan.
 
#27
Would the game be in a much better state if Zverev, Tsitsi, Coric etc were the leading pack of the game? I'm not so sure about that.

Fedalovic are titans of the game, and it wouldn't be the same without them. If they are gone the ratings and interest would drop.

It's not a coincidence that all three of them, still active, are the ones who have won most GS titles in the history of the sport. They are just that good that the youngsters can't make the breakthrough, my opinion.
I've bolded the crux of the thing here.

In a nutshell, that is the whole point.

There's no succession plan.
 

NKDM

Professional
#28
This is actually fascinating to me.

Because you're probably not alone with that line of thinking!

Genuinely curious about your perspective: All is truly hunky dory? No issues whatsoever coming down the pike?
Not sure I can answer your question without elucidating what the purported issue is. Just making blanket conspiracy statements is not carte blanche for picking on random things we don’t like about the sport.

I noticed that you mentioned Sampras’ record. Why do you consider his total to be somehow above board if we are going to discuss deliberate changes to the game?

Occams razor explanation for me is that the game has evolved like it always has. There were periods of not much change and then changes came in flooding in - that’s the nature of change.

Read books like The Black Swan or Tipping Point about how change works. Look at how the internet up-ended the world in a short span of 5 years (93-00) even greater than the personal computer revolution before it.

We know a lot of credible things have changed in the sport - rackets, string tech, fitness training, player support in recovery and injury management. Surface homogenization has helped a lot too but then again it wasn’t done to favor any one particular player but style of game. Then again that’s happened in the past too - 3 slams were on grass at one point!
 

Mustard

Talk Tennis Guru
#30
The scheduling must also take its share of the blame. Back to back 5 set Masters events was just ridiculous and it even is today despite being reduced to best of 3. Small wonder players play one and skip the other.
In the past, the tennis authorities would have been happy for other players to make names for themselves if some big names skip the tournament through injury or fatigue, but when Federer and Nadal skipped 2006 Hamburg it was like the ATP decided to make it a priority to make sure that they played at all the Masters events. Why were the ATP doing this? Why not let other players take their chances? This played a role in creating the current situation.

In the past, the attitude would have been "You can't win all the Super 9 because of fatigue? Tough luck". Variety was reduced from 2003-2009.
 
#31
Not sure I can answer your question without elucidating what the purported issue is. Just making blanket conspiracy statements is not carte blanche for picking on random things we don’t like about the sport.

I noticed that you mentioned Sampras’ record. Why do you consider his total to be somehow above board if we are going to discuss deliberate changes to the game?

Occams razor explanation for me is that the game has evolved like it always has. There were periods of not much change and then changes came in flooding in - that’s the nature of change.

Read books like The Black Swan or Tipping Point about how change works. Look at how the internet up-ended the world in a short span of 5 years (93-00) even greater than the personal computer revolution before it.

We know a lot of credible things have changed in the sport - rackets, string tech, fitness training, player support in recovery and injury management. Surface homogenization has helped a lot too but then again it wasn’t done to favor any one particular player but style of game. Then again that’s happened in the past too - 3 slams were on grass at one point!
Okay. Lot of words to say that you're good with it all. No problems for you then.

Nothing blanket here. Starting a conversation to try to hash things out. Because the bar's been set so high now that relative mediocrity is going to have to suffice as the next "great."

I'm asking questions. You're accepting status quo.
 
#37
OP was pulling for Nole just because he is a Fed fan, truth to be told.
I wonder who would Fedfans root for if Fed’s records were not threatened by neither of Djokdal.
Answers could be surprising, uh?
"Just because he is a Fed fan"? Are you quite sure about that? :D

I don't think you even thought that through, to be honest. There were two choices. I wonder whether anything else could have factored into the decision? :unsure:
 
#39
"Just because he is a Fed fan"? Are you quite sure about that? :D

I don't think you even thought that through, to be honest. There were two choices. I wonder whether anything else could have factored into the decision? :unsure:
Come clean, my friend. I have already accepted it.
If I have to freely choose between play styles of Rafa and Nole, I like Rafa better.
 
Last edited:

Mainad

Bionic Poster
#40
In the past, the tennis authorities would have been happy for other players to make names for themselves if some big names skip the tournament through injury or fatigue, but when Federer and Nadal skipped 2006 Hamburg it was like the ATP decided to make it a priority to make sure that they played at all the Masters events. Why were the ATP doing this? Why not let other players take their chances? This played a role in creating the current situation.

In the past, the attitude would have been "You can't win all the Super 9 because of fatigue? Tough luck". Variety was reduced from 2003-2009.
I guess the ATP wanted to showcase their newly-named Masters events and assumed they could only do this by making them mandatory for the top players. But they should have realised that forcing them to play these events back to back would inevitably misfire when the top guys started trotting out the fatigue and injury excuses which obviously became more common as they grew older and more injury-prone. They urgently need to come to their senses and start to rethink the way these Masters events are scheduled.
 
#41
Why do you think he was pulling for Novak?
That poster has been talking down on Novak a thousands times on this boards.
You and I both know it has nothing to do with Djokovic anyway. I'm just tired of seeing him go around doing this. He does it to me, FFW, and some others I won't name. It's one thing to argue and belittle about tennis, but he takes it beyond that and it's time for it to stop.
 
#45
Homogenization and technology to a certain degree is hindering development, but at the end of the day we just aren't getting athletic talents on the caliber of the big 3, Pete, etc. Tennis' neglect towards its lower levels and other sports lapping it in terms of pay floor is probably the biggest reason.
 
#46
Players, especially youngsters who are pretty much clueless no matter how you put it and no matter how many of us want to see them start winning majors and moving to the next level. Everything else is pretty much irrelevant as everyone is playing under same conditions and same technology is available to everyone.
 
#49
The game's in a real pickle.

Common knowledge at this point. Dwindling rec interest aside, there are a host of issues facing the pro tour now.

Does it stem from the outrageously ballooning major title tallies? Whether they're legit is another question entirely. But the fact that the tour spearheaded the initiative to inflate numbers and establish marketable rivalries against a rising tide of diversified entertainment options was fairly short-sighted.

This is going to be a very tough act to follow. At least a few folks got paid.

Only 800k visitors to melbourne park is a real problem
 
#50
I contest the premise that “tennis” is in trouble. It’s a multibillion dollar global sport. Rec interest is flat in the US, but that’s because there are no top-level US male stars. If Tiafoe becomes a multi Slam winner, you’ll see some movement in that. I think Osaka is going to move the needle a bit.

Are TV revenues cratering? I haven’t heard either way, have you? The tournaments all seem to be undertaking gigantic engineering projects like space age roofs.

Or is the question more framed as a dearth of young talent? IDK, watching De Minauer, Shapo, Tiafoe, Tizitzipas, and a few others besides them, they’re pretty gosh darn good at tennis. Who the hell knows, Kyrgios decides he wants to be great, someone else comes up... these guys can play the game in a way that looks, to me, every bit as miraculous as the highlights of the greats. So we’ll see. Djokovic is probably gonna suppress things a bit. I really like him but I think a lot of people don’t because he’s odd.
 
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