Photo Albums

« Where do Serena and Federer Go From Here? | Main | Federer: The Day After »

January 29, 2007

Comments

Peacemaster

Ain't that just peachy.

Bring on the French Open.

Stellcat


I think Roger can't get much better than the level he's been at since Wimbledon (throw out the match against Murray, that was a fluke). But I do think he can maintain a very high level of play for the next few years and continue to dominate as long as he stays injury-free.

I saw in a press conference that he wants to still be playing in 2012 so he can experience the Olympics at Wimbledon (that will be so cool). Let's say he plays the four Slams up through 2012 and calls it quits. That's 23 more Slams. If he stays healthy and playing great, he will win at least 9-10 more. My god, he could reach or pass 20 Slams.

Peacemaster

After 2004, everyone thought Federer could not get any better (won three slams and the TMC). Scratch that - everyone thought tennis cannot be played any better.

Then he lost only four times in 2005. Played the match of this generation (till then) in the Wimbledon final. Won a record 4 TMS tournaments. People thought that was the best tennis anyone has ever played and, surely, Federer can't get any better.

Then came 2006. He made all four slam finals. Won three and 9 more tournaments, including four TMS tournaments (again!). Shattered the points record (his own) and broke several others. Played the "best tennis anyone has ever seen" in destroying Blake in the TMC final. Surely, he cannot improve.

2007 - won AO without dropping a set. Destroyed a pumped up Roddick in the semi - his supposed "rival". Played flawless tennis - hailed, again, the best tennis anyone has ever played. Primed for a fantastic season as he is already in peak form a month in.

See a pattern? Federer is in terra incognita. No player in history has done so much in such a short period. Nobody knows how much better he can get, including himself. His "peak" will be identified only after his game falters with age. Enjoy the ride.

Spuddog

Totally agree with Peacemaster here. I'm starting to hear more and more from the media; "Same ol' final, same ol' champion, tennis is boring, blah, blah, blah."

I truly hope that sports fans are not so dull-wiited that they buy into this and neglect to enjoy the tennis history unfolding right before their very eyes! In the last 8-10 months, in my opinion, Fed's backhand has improved quite a bit and, though his volley has always been good, it has improved quite a bit in that time-span as well. That's what makes him Fed, it would be so easy to just stay with the game he had in 2005 or 2006 but he is putting in big time effort to improve and not let the gap close for his competitors.

The media folks keep asking, "Who would win between Sampras in his prime and Fed in his prime?" My answer to that is, "Fed may not have hit his prime yet!"

Unbelieveable! As Peacemaster just said, "Sit back and 'enjoy the ride'."

Stellcat


Sampras may have been getting old when Federer beat him at Wimbledon in 2001 but I'm sorry but Roger hadn't even scratched the surface of his talent yet. It all evens out.

I'm tired of hearing about Sampras wasn't in his prime when Roger beat him. Sampras had won the last four Wimbledons without a challenge and was still one of the top players in the world...especially on grass. Roger was young, inexperienced and on the big stage for the first time in his career and he slayed the giant. It was our first sign of what was coming in years ahead.

I've seen both players in their prime and my money's on Roger. He's got a better all-around game than Sampras had I think. Pete had a better serve and was better at the net but Roger's got a great return game to neutralize big servers and would eat Sampras up in baseline rallies.

Federer vs. Sampras by surface
Grass - even
Hard court - even
Clay - Federer easily
Rebound ace (slower hard court) - Federer

sensationalsafin

dont take annything away from sampras. he too is one of the greatest players, and imo the current greatest until roger finishes beating all his records, of all time. and it is tough to call who would win in their prime. but i agree, lets wait till we see federer's prime, or can atleast identify it. i mean he's lost 15 matches in the last 3 years and unfortunately he still hasnt achieved only 3 losses that mcenroe did, but cmon. i mean. for all we know he might only lose 3 times this year, then 2 times next year. its quite a mystery. this is kinda crazy talk, even if it is about federer, but what if he does win the grand slam this year. is he gonna lose next year? it doesnt seem like, so he could potentially win 10 straight slams or even more. plus, if he wins all 4 slams this year and next year AND wins the olympics, he will have accomplished a grand slam and backed it up with a GOLDEN slam. that would be sick, kinda boring, but sick.

Tiff

If that is true, then I don't know what to think about the game...I agree with everyone who says that history is unfolding before our eyes, but I also will remember how boring a lot of the matches are...sometimes dominance in a sport isn't a good thing...people get tired of seeing a dog do the same tricks...we are missing a great rivalry...even if Fed dominated that rivalry, it would make for better tennis...tennis is taking a beating on ratings in the States... about the highest ratings tennis had in America was when Agassi made the US Open final against Fed...I hope for tennis we can see some competition...maybe Fed will inspire the field to try to catch up...u can say Rafa is a rival, but off of clay, Rafa will have to win a few...and Roddick needs to try to win even one (or in his case, maybe just a set)...I am happy for Fed and his accomplishments, but as a lover of the game, I want some gritty 5 set matches with tiebreaks and the lot...this isn't Fed's fault...the field never shows up to play him...

And a final side note: I have gotten to where I mute the Fed matches...I became nauseated with the commentary from Enberg and Carillo...it really was quite crazy...I think between the 2 they came up with a 100 adjectives to describe Fed...why do u think he mutes his own matches?? The coverage of the Aussie Open here was horrible...even when live tennis began at 7:00pm here, coverage picked up at 9:30 and they never showed 'live' tennis, always started matches already played (only got about 4 days of real live tennis)...shame on ESPN...this is off the topic, but I had to share :)

Let's hope for a fun and exciting French Open...

Stellcat


We could go on and on all day about what we hated about ESPN's Australian Open coverage. There was plenty of just stupid things they did. You have to give them credit though for going all the way to Australia and dedicating that much time and coverage to tennis.

My main problems are the heavy American (Roddick mainly) bias and choice of match coverage. Don't show us a replay of a Serena or Roddick boring blowout when then there's a great fifth set going on another court. Also, when you start your coverage and Roddick and Ancic or Serena and Peer are in the third set, don't start the match over and not let us watch live tennis.

We'll see how they handle the French Open.

sensationalsafin

is espn even showing the french? i agree with the whole dominance is boring. i would love to see crazy 5 setters going to 20-18 in the fifth. this is why the safin-federer match was so great. two great players playing great tennis for such a long time. the 5 setter between nadal and federer is also another great match. sure its crazy that federer won the whole thing without dropping a set. great accomplishment and all. but still. id rather see him go through 4 or 5 5-setters in a row than winning the tournament so seemingly easily. well. lets hope the french brings out some thrilling 5 set matches.

harini

i thought feds was really boring up until the french last year. even at wimbledon, i got bored at his matches 'cos he plays so well and wins so easily. he plays amazing tennis, definitely, but he beats his opponents before we can even blink our eyes and that bothered me because i like tight, tough matches that are full of surprises even if they end in straight sets (like the oz open final yesterday for example). i think the playing field has definitely gotten better and there are players who give federer some trouble now more than before. i think rafa bringing out federer's 'vulnerability' gave other players the realisation that federer is beatable. but i think federer knows that and plays his best, and better, to push away those conceptions.
i think federer is getting better. i've been wowed by his performances in the past couple years but during the final yesterday i was blown away. i mean, really. he's like a zen master or some sort of magician on court, the way he just had control of the ball and the court...amazing.
anyway...i think rafa is going to be a formidable force during clay season but i think federer's looking forward to it.

and sensationalsafin, that safin-federer match from oz open 2005--good stuff! if only safin could control his demons...he would be difficult to beat!!

Stellcat


I think if Safin could've stayed injury-free and mentally strong he could've become a good rival to Roger. Safin's got the game to really push Roger as you can see in all of the close matches they've had. If Safin can put it together now, he could still become a top-5 player again and try and challenge Roger.

I think the whole Fedal rivalry has been losing steam. Nadal hasn't been the same player since Wimbledon. Maybe the return to the clay court season in the spring will make Rafa say "Vamos!"

Tennis needs Nadal to get back on his game and make it a rivalry with Roger again. When he was beating Roger, it made it interesting because you didn't know who was going to win when they played. It wasn't just Federer domination. Like Borg had McEnroe and Connors and Sampras had Agassi, we need another great rivalry. Fedal showed sings of it in 2006, it needs to return.

Peacemaster

I agree with you all that a four or five-setter is, generally, more gripping than a straight-sets victory. I stress the word generally. There are exceptions e.g. the Federer - Roddick match from this year's AO - a match that was high quality tennis and very entertaining to watch due to the sheer level of artistry displayed by Federer.

I, for one, do NOT find domination (and, consequently, shorter matches) boring. No offence intended to any of the posters here, but my love of the sport is deep enough so that I appreciate every single point on its own. For me, there are exciting points (made so by one or more of a few hundred factors) and not-so-exciting points; not exciting or boring matches.

But, for the sake of argument, let us allow that Federer's domination is boring (I contend to the contrary, obviously). In that case, many (certainly not all) have to "man up" and stop blaming Federer for his domination. The kind of domination he has is the dream of all who have dabbled in the athletic. He is simply doing his job. If you find tennis boring, square the blame on the ineptitude and frailty of his challengers. Someone mentioned about Nadal challenging Roger for a while last year and making things interesting. But, he faltered and could not keep up his level; whereas Federer kept chugging along and not by luck mind you. The effort that goes behind his consistency is largely unseen, I'm sure. May be he even wants his opponents to think that he's able to do it effortlessly (how demoralizing is that?).

If the average tennis fan cannot appreciate Federer for the once in a lifetime player that he is, indeed, tennis is the poorer. My humble advice: watch for every point he plays and consider it as a little adventure, a chance for the sublime to ensue. Don't look at the scoreboard; because, when it comes to Federer, it's not just about winning - the real joy is in the journey to victory.

sensationalsafin

im not an average tennis fan, and i try to take in every moment i can of being around to watch the soon-to-be greatest player ever. but still, i want something unexpected to happen.

Spuddog

I'm still with Peacemaster here. The words 'boring' and 'Federer' do not belong together on any level for me. I could watch him destroy challenger after challenger and never get tired of his complete game. It's out of my control to worry about the interest other sports fans have in the best game in sports. They will always be fickle and tennis will never be football here in the U.S..

For more competitive matches, I try to watch the rest of the field. (When the networks will allow.) These guys are not chumps, yet they wrestle for the scraps left behind by their master. I am enjoying this era of tennis, fans will refer to it for the rest of my time on this planet and I feel lucky to be living it.

It will be interesting to see if Fed lifts the entire game to a new level or whether it will take injury (God forbid) or old age to bring him back to the pack. The new studs all know what they're up against as they develop their respective tennis games (Berdych #12, Murray #14, Djokovic #13, Gasquet #16, oh yea and that old Nadal guy at #2)

I heard that the Tennis Channel bought the rights to the French Open coverage but to what extent I do not know. I'll have to research.

Tiff

I was one of the people who said boring...if u read my entire post, I said his matches could be quite boring, not Fed himself...even with complete dominance, I said that if the matches were good as far as competitive, it would allow tennis to be more interesting....I can't say matches that end 6-2,6-0, 6-0 hold my interest much and it doesn't matter whether Fed is showing his brilliance or not...sport is also about competition and there is none..I said that it hurts the game, but that is the field's fault...either someone will step up, or Fed will continue to win anything and everything...I never attacked him as a player...he is awesome and the greatest I've ever watched...but I still say that matches can be boring if it is all one-sided with no fight, no anything from the opponent...and that goes for anyone on either side, men or women...I love matches that go the distance...generally most people do...take football for example...who wants to see a game end 45-0?? You want to see something tight and close that comes down to the final 2.00 minutes...that is what I meant...I never said Fed's style was boring or blamed him for the lack of competition...

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)