Who has a weaker claim on the year end number 1?

Discussion in 'Former Pro Player Talk' started by timnz, Jul 16, 2012.

  1. timnz

    timnz Legend

    Oct 17, 2008
    Connors - 1977


    McEnroe - 1982

    By my thinking McEnroe 1982 has the weaker claim.

    Neither of them deserve the number 1 ranking for those years, but the ATP gave it to them anyway. But McEnroe's is the weaker claim - he was a long way behind Connors and Lendl that year, whereas Connors was closer to Vilas and Borg in 1977 (close but not quite there).
  2. pc1

    pc1 G.O.A.T.

    Jul 18, 2008
    Space/Time continuum alternative reality
    I would agree with you. According to the Collins book, Connors won 8 of 21 tournaments with a 70-11 record but he won WCT which was a big deal.

    McEnroe, according to some sources had a slightly better percentage record than Connors but won none of the top tournaments.
  3. Gizo

    Gizo Hall of Fame

    May 15, 2007
    In 1977 Connors won 8 'official titles', WCT titles at Birmingham and St Louis, Las Vegas, the WCT finals, Hawaii, Sydney, the WCT Challenge Cup and Masters.

    His record at the 5 biggest tournaments that year was:
    WCT Finals - Champion
    Roland Garros - Did Not Play
    Wimbledon - Finalist
    US Open - Finalist
    Masters - Champion

    He won 2 out of the 5 biggest tournaments, and reached the final at 4 of them.

    His h2hs against Vilas and Borg 0-1 and 1-2 respectively that year, so he didn't play them much.

    McEnroe won 5 'official titles' in 1982, Philadelphia, San Francisco, Sydney, Tokyo and Wembley. Philadelphia was the only title that he had won until September that year. He went on a tear at the end of the year between the US Open and Masters, winning 26 matches in a row including 4 out of his 5 titles for the year and his Davis Cup semi-final and final rubbers. 1982 of course was the year of his perfect 12-0 record in Davis Cup singles/doubles rubbers.

    Philadelphia and Wembley were both huge titles back then, definately among the top 10 most important tournaments I would say. However his record at the 5 biggest tournaments was:
    WCT Finals - Finalist
    Roland Garros - Did Not Play
    Wimbledon - Finalist
    US Open - Semi-Finalist
    Masters - Finalist

    So 0 titles at those events (in fact he also didn't win any WCT titles all year), and his h2hs against Connors and Lendl were 2-2 and 0-4 (with Lendl beating him at the WCT finals, US Open and Masters).

    Connors has much a greater claim in 1977 than McEnroe did in 1982, and was much closer to Vilas/Borg than McEnroe was to Connors/Lendl in those respective years.

    Since the creation of the computer ranking system in 1973, I would say that McEnroe in 1982 and Sampras in 1998 are the two weakest year end no. 1 players in the last 39 years.
    Last edited: Jul 16, 2012
  4. Xavier G

    Xavier G Professional

    Feb 13, 2012
    I don't believe Jimbo or Mac deserve the no.1 ranking for 1977 or 1982 either, but Connors' 77 was better than Mac's 82. Connors won the two biggest indoor play-off titles for the season and beat Borg in the Masters final. John was dominated by Lendl all of the 82 season and was heavily thumped in the Masters final.

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