Andre Agassi: Rafael Nadal Has An Argument To Make For The Best Of All Time [Video]
by Tom Gainey | September 23rd, 2013, 2:27 pm
  • 415 Comments

Andre Agassi was out promoting education, his foundations and his new kids snack food line called “Box Buddies” this morning. The tennis great gave an extensive interview with Marc Lamont Hill of Huffington Post live touching on his foundation, his work with children though education and his future plans away from tennis.

“Now I have a canvas to do whatever it is want to do,” the 43-year-old Agassi said. “I feel like I can impact people not just for a couple hours anymore, I have the opportunity to impact them for a generation.

“I feel like there’s so much more out there to do, and I’m glad I have the time to do it without putting that unnecessary drama on my body or mind.”

Agassi, a former No. 1 with eight majors and a career Grand Slam, also talked candidly about the greats of the game including his main rival Pete Sampras.

“He made me better in some ways, and he made me worse in others,” Agassi said. “He was one of those guys that no matter how well you played you knew it wasn’t necessary going to be in your hands and I never felt that way about anybody until a guy named Roger Federer showed up.”

And when pressed, what about the greatest?

“Pete was the best of his time,” Agassi said. “I think Federer’s a class above.”

“Pete was off the hook on the faster courts but during the clay season players wanted to play against him. You didn’t have that luxury against Fed,” he said. “Until Nadal, you would say Fed was probably the best of all time.”

Agassi then gave his take on the raging “Roger vs. Rafa” debate.

“I personally think that Nadal has an argument to make for the best of all time,” Agassi said. “If Nadal is sitting at a table with Federer and Federer says I’m the best ever, my first question would be, ‘How come you didn’t beat me?’ I beat you twice as many times and by the way, I won everything including the gold medal and Davis Cup.”

“But at same token Federer has separated himself for a few years like nobody else and he’s done it more consistent,” Agassi added. “To be able to make the argument for both guys playing in the same generation is pretty remarkable.”

“For me, those two [Roger and Rafa] and Laver are in a whole other tier.”

Agassi is of course married to all-time great Steffi Graf who Andre, admitting to bias, says is still the best, even better than Serena.

Here’s the full interview, a must listen for tennis and Agassi fans:


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Fedal Wars: Hey Agassi, Who’s Your GOAT If Roger Federer Wins A Second Career Slam In Paris?
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415 Comments for Andre Agassi: Rafael Nadal Has An Argument To Make For The Best Of All Time [Video]

Brando Says:

Did you just say it like it really is Andre?

Naughty, naughty stuff…. :-)


Perfect fan Says:

hey andre….how u doing?

say hi to Steffi as well.

well, when I was a kid….I used to cheer seles a lot ahead of Steffi. I still remember, when seles was stabbed….I seriously believed, it was Steffi who was behind the attack. GOD!…. I m truly missing those kiddish days ;-)


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

I have watched some of the video,but have got bored waiting for the Andre interview,after nearly 20 minutes of rabbiting on about BS i gave it up as a bad job(sigh).


skeezer Says:

“But at same token Federer has separated himself for a few years like nobody else and he’s done it more consistent,”

Nothing else needs to be said there.

How many Slams does Steffi have? Hehe….oh…must have been a weak era LMAO.


Brando Says:

^But what Fed have done that IF Sampras, Borg etc were in his era?

Just asking since IF seems > what happened, according to some! :-)


hawkeye Says:

Agassi was Fed-like with a significant losing record to Sampras.


SG1 Says:

Agassi did not have Fed’s movement or serve. Those are huge Fed advantages.


hawkeye Says:

“Until Nadal, you would say Fed was probably the best of all time.”

“I personally think that Nadal has an argument to make for the best of all time,” Agassi said. “If Nadal is sitting at a table with Federer and Federer says I’m the best ever, my first question would be, ‘How come you didn’t beat me?’ I beat you twice as many times and by the way, I won everything including the gold medal and Davis Cup.”

Nothing else needs to be said there.

What’s Roger’s h2h vs rest of Top 4? Hehe…oh… must be a strong era LMAO.


Steve 27 Says:

“For me, those two [Roger and Roger] and Laver are in a whole other tier.

This is like the movie kramer vs kramer. I think is a bad translation.

“For me, those two [Roger and Rafa] and Laver are in a whole other tier.

I believe this is Andre want to meant


josh Says:

I don’t entirely disagree with Andre, but I do believe Pete is right up there with Roger & Laver overall. Roger is definitely better, but Pete wasn’t too shabby for his generation. We have to give credit where it’s due. It always comes down to intangibles, do slams alone make a player great, and of course it’s always hard to pick players across all generations.


Steve 27 Says:

No French, you dont deserve be in Tier 1, even if it is by sheer luck.


queen Says:

Yea he separated himself because there was nobody good enough to challenge him until Nadal showed up and started woopin his a$$. Hmm… Maybe Fed was not so special after all…


SG1 Says:

Fed was a special player (…still is actually). Don’t kid yourself. Even in Cincinnati, you could still see the genius of the man, 3 or 4 years past his prime.


Steve 27 Says:

Prime? A man who reaches in 2009 all GS finals is past his prime, with only 28 years?
You could be a passionate fan but you cant deny the fact that in that year he was still in his prime.
If you mean peak is ok, but 2 gs title plus 2 gs finals is definetely in his prime.
Not because it began to be defeated in the finals of grand slam you conveniently point such player passed his prime.


J Beer Says:

I really enjoy the sheer despair that the Cryfeds all over the web display these days. Rafa is coming to get the crown of GOAT and there is nothing that can be done about it. It has had a nice nine years so far, but the weak era was definitely the wrong moment in time to hand out such a big title. Nine years (marketing machine started calling him GOAT in 2004) is relatively short, considering we are speaking of all times.


SG1 Says:

Fed was excellent in ’09 but nowhere near as good as he was in ’05 and ’06. Also remember that Rafa was not himself in ’09 (family problems) and to some degree this opened the door for Federer. Fed was in tears at the ’09 AO after losing to Rafa. The pressure of losing to Rafa often was getting to him.


Okiegal Says:

@Queen @3:58

Spot on, Sista!!! Rafa is simply the best!! End of story.


queen Says:

The pressure of knowing there somebody better than him.


James Says:

I agree with Agassi.


hawkeye Says:

Federer was an improved player in 2009 compared to 2005-06. Continual improvement. The field closed the gap so the difference was not so obvious.

It’s all relative you see.


Polo Says:

Agassi spoke well about the “greatest” debate. He is ambivalent as to who is but he gave accolades to all who deserve to be mentioned


Polo Says:

I do agree without reservation with Agassi when he calls Steffi the greatest of all the women.


Patson Says:

Long Roger vs Rafa comparison post coming. I tried to be as fair as I could.

As a neutral person (because I’m a Nole fan) , there are two handicaps Nadal has which he won’t be able to do away with. One is that Federer has a much greater appeal in the tennis world, and the other one that Federer’s game is aesthetically pleasing. Alongside the 17 majors, which are 3 more than the second one, Federer becomes a great candidate for the Greatest player to play the game. Having said this, Nadal can turn this around because he’s got time on his side.

Federer’s losing head to head against Nadal is generally attributed to the fact that outdoor hard courts have gotten slow over the years, and Nadal is the greatest player to play on clay. Barring one, all of Nadal’s wins have come on clay and outdoor hardcourts. Federer fans think the head-to-head is unfair. Federer has never lost to Nadal indoors, and he’s won the Masters cup many times while Nadal hasn’t won a single one. Had they played more on indoor courts, would the head-to-head be as bad as it is ? A Fed fan would reply with an emphatic No.

Federer fans then say that take away Federer’s Wimbledon slams (7 in total), and he’s got 10 from 3 different majors. Take away Rafa’s clay slams, and he’s got 5 from 3 different majors. Federer fans then say that Federer is the 2nd best clay player of his generation (1 FO win and 4 finals) , the best player of hard courts (9 majors in total) , the best player of grass courts (7 majors) and the best player of indoor courts (plenty of master cups and never lost to Nadal ).

What will Nadal have to do to be considered greater than Federer ? Here’s a guess, may be win around 3-4 more majors other than clay and win more than 17 majors. A year-end masters cup title, one should be enough I suppose. One more Olympic title would boost his status further. 35+ Masters titles with 10+ on hard courts would be a GREAT addition. He’s already pretty far ahead on the Masters front. Because Davis Cup is a team effort, Davis Cup victories will be considered less important by the historians. And then at the end, with some 200+ weeks as the number 1 player, even the Fed fans will then begrudgingly accept that Nadal may have surpassed Federer’s accomplishments. But until this happens, Federer will be considered the greatest player to play the game.

I believe Rafa’s legacy from now onwards will be shaped by how many majors does he win on surfaces other than clay. The 2013 US open was a step towards that. The year 2014 may be Nadal’s best chance to close the gap.

As for me, I would want Nole to carve out his own legacy. In the era of Roger and Rafa, how awesome will it be if its Nole who gets the calendar slam.

Looking forward to 2014.


hawkeye Says:

Agree that Graf was the female GOAT. Although Graf has fewer majors than Margaret Court, she played in a tougher era.

Deja vu all over again.


Polo Says:

Most of Court’s majors were not in the Open era. A lot of the professionals who were good players were not allowed to play until the Open. Graf came around during the era of two of the greatest female players in history, Navratilova and Evert, and started beating them consistently while still a teenager. She achieved the true Golden Slam at the age of 19. I wonder if that could happen again.


Anna Says:

Patson – I’m sure your analysis will be more than fair to both parties, completely quantifiable and without prejudice of any sort, but let me save you all that trouble by simply saying that what Andre says is true. Right now, today, a case can be made for Nadal being the GOAT. Three years from now it will simply be fact, and that fact will be based on numbers. GOAT is not a popularity contest, nor is it based on Roger’s (or anybody else’s) ability to float or dance on a tennis court. You don’t get to make up criteria for Goatness willy nilly, and if you insist on writing your post then you should clearly define your criteria prior to your analysis. Somethimg like a grid would probably suit this purpose best.


Tennis for Life Says:

Much to the agony of fed fans Agassi clearly states that H2H, Olympic gold and Davis cup are much relevant in the GOAT debate.
LMAO
Thank you Agassi.


Pogi Says:

Roger is GOAT…

Nadal is BOAT…

Greatest > Best


Tennis for Life Says:

Agassi, Sampras, JMac, Wilander, Borg, etc. have all opined that H2H is relevant.


pogi Says:

^ same thing as being # 1 for more than 300weeks and 6>0 WTF is also very relevant


Tennis for Life Says:

Obviously these two numbers are relevant and most probably Federer will be left with only these two numbers.
Rafa will trump him with everything else, GS count, MS count, gold, Davis cup, H2H, dominance over the field, longevity, etc.


pogi Says:

“Don’t count your chickens until they are hatched”


Patson Says:

@Anna:

I think you focused too much on what I said about Federer’s game being aesthetically more pleasing. Despite being a Nole fan, I have no qualms in admitting that it is lighter to the eyes. By no means did I try , nor should anyone , use that as a criterion to judge the greatness of a player. It’s more of an off-hand comment than anything else.

Greatness is determined by achievements. Let me just focus on grand slams in this post to illustrate a point. I truly believe Nadal can excel Federer in terms of achievements. Having said that, I also think that there’s still work for him ahead. If we compare Rafa with past champions, say Sampras, Rafa’s records beat him on clay. But Sampras has a superior hard-court (US open and Australian open) grand slam and Wimbledon record. Compare Federer to Sampras, and Federer has a superior Australian Open and French Open record while he stands equal with him in Wimbledon and US open. Similarly we can do the comparisons based on grandslam achievements with Borg, Lendl, Connors, Mcenroe, Laver etc.

As of now, Federer’s resume is more well-rounded – barring clay. In 4 years time, it may be that Nadal’s resume is as well-rounded as Federer’s or even more so. If it is, then there will be no doubt in anybody’s mind that Nadal is the superior player. His well-rounded resume would speak for itself.

I actually think that if Nadal does end up getting 17 majors , tennis historians would consider him greater of the two. That’s when head-to-head would kick in. The debate would get very interesting when Rafa crosses Pete’s 14. If he wins more than 17 with a few those being non-clay, no arguments whatsoever. No ifs and buts.

Grandslam and grandslam records tend to take the center stage in tennis i.e the number of majors one wins, number of career grandslams, number of calendar grandslams etc. I bet if one asks Federer which of the two records he’d like to keep i.e either the 17 majors or 302 weeks as world number 1, he’ll choose the former and rightly so.


Sirius Says:

So…. I think that according to the pundits, murray is right behind nadal for the GOAT title. He’s got a positive h2h vs roger, an olympic medal. He just needs to win the davis cup next year and complete his career grandslam. Then he’d be the 2nd goat after rafa. Simple, no?


Jo Says:

Agassi couldnt say now who is the GOAT. But is expecting it to be Nadal in the making.


pogi Says:

^…and Delbonis maybe not far behind as well in GOAT title because 1-0 H2H with Roger…


Sirius Says:

^delbonis don’t have an olympic SINGLES GOLD. He needs it first, then the DC

in order to be GOAT, you need these things

1. H2h positive against rog

2. Olympic singles gold medal. (singles gold, remember? It can’t be anything else)

3. A DC title.

Have these 3 and you’re a goat contender

its a shame borg, laver couldn’t play roger. So they’re not eligible for the GOAT debate :(


Callin Says:

I’ve seen so many GOAT debates online lately. A lot of people who want Federer to be the GOAT often frame the debate on Federer’s terms: # of GSs, # of weeks being #1, the YEC etc.

For a truly objective analysis, it needs to look at the case from both sides. From Nadal’s side, he has more than the H2H, the Olympic gold medal, 4 Davis Cups, # of Master 1000 and the tough competition (between two future Hall of Famers). He has the highest winning % in the history of tennis (Borg is #2). That is one astounding stat that few people mention. Isn’t it fitting for the guy who wins the most to be the GOAT?

He doesn’t need to get 3-4 slams off the clay to be considered GOAT. If he wins one more Australian Open, he’ll have a double career Grand Slam and the only man who achieves that on 3 different surfaces. (Laver did it on 2 surfaces.) No one can call the man with the only double career GS on 3 different surfaces as “not rounded”.

That’s all he needs: One more AO and he has the most rounded resume in the history of the sport. Any FOs or anything else will be just gravy.


Jo Says:

I think the term “WEAK ERA” is an unintelligent comment.
I dont think todays GREATS would better the Borgs, Samprases,.. if they use a 67 or 85 sq.in racket weighing 13-16oz. in faster courts.


roy Says:

nadals h2h with federer isn’t the only h2h to consider. his h2h with novak,murray(compared to federer)… and against top 10.

career versus top 10

1. Bjorn Borg .700 -
2. Rafael Nadal .690 -
3. Boris Becker .651 -
4. Roger Federer .648
5. Ivan Lendl .643 -
6. Pete Sampras .636 -
7. Novak Djokovic .576


roy Says:

and consider nadal plays the vast majority of the year off his favourite surface while federer plays the vast majority on it.


Tennis for Life Says:

Pogi and Sirius
You are not quite right.
For delbonis or Murray to become a goat they have to complete the career golden slam, 14 slams, Davis cup, win slams for 8 or more consecutive yrs, winning H2H against all top rivals, have a winning record of > 80% against the field, 20+ masters, etc. and something more. Goathood is not so easy.


Pogi Says:

Wow Tennis for Life… Are you the one to decide criteria for goathood? Wow… How in the world you custom fitted it to your idol Dull…expert?


Pogi Says:

When did the davis cup become an individual achievement?


Patson Says:

This post specifically focusses on Davis cup. This is probably the golden age of tennis for Spain. Nadal, Ferrer, Almagro are consistent top 20 players. Then there is the dangerous Verdasco, the mercurial Feli lopez, and Tommy Robredo from the old guard. Spain’s success in Davis cup is owing to all these players.

Similarly, Serbia’s success in Davis cup is owing to Nole, Tipsy, Troicki, and Nenad. Nole cannot claim he alone is the source of success. Everybody contributes and everybody shares the glory. One man does not and cannot win the whole thing.

So here is the question: Is it fair to present Davis Cup as an achievement of a player as if it was he alone who won it ?


Pogi Says:

Thanks Patson for the explanation.


Sirius Says:

And one thing for sure, to be the GOAT you need to get rosoled out in your prime. Not everyone can do that back to back years :)


Tennis for Life Says:

The focus on Davis cup is given only by fed fans to not consider for anything.
Even if take out Davis cup fed has a lot of other holes in his CV.


Tennis for Life Says:

Sirius and Pogi
please tel me who should define the goat criteria


J Beer Says:

Patson, Federer’s resume is more well rounded? Nonsense! The opposite is the truth. Federer and Roland Garros victory only happened when Rafa was beaten by Soderling. Federer only has one clay court GS and never beat Rafa at RG, while Rafa has multiple HC and Grass majors and really kicked Fed’s ass anywhere, anytime.


Patson Says:

@J Beer:

Rafa is the greatest clay court player ever. Federer was always a distant second. However, tennis is played on 4 surfaces: outdoor hard-courts, indoor hard/carpet, grass, clay. Federer’s records are impressive for 3 out of the 4 surfaces.
We should be able to agree on that.


Sirius Says:

Tennis for Life,

i don’t think anyone can define the goat criteria. In my opinion, to be the greatest player of ALL TIME you need to be perfect. There’s no absolute goat, you may only define one relatively. But there’s always going to be argument about who is the goat. People like to declare their fav as the goat which I quite don’t like nor agree

if slam counts make one goat, its roger now. But what crime did laver do? He couldn’t play for 5 years. Who knows how many he’d have won? (don’t talk about the only 2 surfaces back then. Rafans don’t quite like the surface talks. They say surface don’t matter, title does)

as far as dominating the tour, roger wins here. He has been the top dog for 302 weeks. But rankings started since 1973. So rog can’t be called the greatest of ALL TIME, can he be?

If masters counts, rafa wins here. But masters were held as 5 setters in the past. So how can you be fair to the guys of the past?

If olympic gold matters, rafa, murray and massu will contest. Lol

if davis cups matter, which I don’t think is a legitimate factor to determine a Goat, i’ve got no idea who has the most dc titles

these are some factors that the FEDAL fans try to use to determine the goat. When you combine them, try to be unbiased and i’m pretty convinced that you’ll be left confused just like i was everytime I wanted to find out the goat :)


Giles Says:

@Sirius. The Rosol joke is now a very stale joke. A more recent joke would be much more appreciated e.g. Stakhovsky’d on his (fed) favourite surface!


James Says:

Federer is still the more successful player of the two even if Nadal is the better player.

McEnroe, Courier, Agassi, Wilander, Navratilova, Murray, Djokovic, all seem to think that Nadal is the best of this era, even ahead of Federer.

The H2H between two GOATs is very much relevent. I’m not sure Federer would dare say he’s the best of his time after what Nadal’s done to him on all three surfaces.

Still too early to crown Nadal the greatest of his time. He still needs to win a few more slams. If he can equal Federer’s slam count, he’d be considered greater than the Swiss maestro by most tennis experts.

As of now, Fed is still the more successful of the two and a few steps ahead of Rafa in the GOAT debate/discussion.


Patson Says:

James:

“As of now, Fed is still the more successful of the two and a few steps ahead of Rafa in the GOAT debate/discussion.”

A wise thing to say for now.


gonzalowski Says:

About Wtf:
Rafa hasn’t got a Wtf indoor 1500 pts. event, but Fed hasn’t got one single Rome or Montecarlo (sea level alttitude clay Masters) 1000 + 1000=2000 pts.


Sirius Says:

^Get ur head out of rafas butt, rafa hasn’t won miami and shanghai. Thats also 2000 points


Giles Says:

Am surprised Sirius’ comment at 5.39 pm was published. That to me is extremely rude. Obviously the moderator thinks otherwise!!
@Sirius. Where is Fed’s single gold medal I keep asking myself. Oops, he hasn’t got one but he does have a silver which doesn’t count!!


Giles Says:

^^ am not pm.


Sirius Says:

^ i forgot to mention paris. Thats 3000 points


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Funny how one GS for Rafa has changed the dynamics in GOAT conversaton,some months ago our pyschic friend was claiming Novak would surpass Rafa,and now some are saying Rafa may surpass Roger,and while either/or both senarios are possible/plausible,i think these things are much easier said than done,to assume Novak will win another 8 GS,or Rafa another 5 GS just like that is unrealistic,bearing in mind its took Novak all his career till now to win the 6 he has already won,which dont get me wrong is a fantastic achievement,no harm in predicting as we all do i suppose,so winning GS is never easy,but i think the more realistic thing is both win probably or most likely win more GS yet,but talk of this player surpassing that player or that player surpassing this player is purely speculation at the moment and nothing more


Sirius Says:

Alison,

sensible talk, no foul words as always :)


Giles Says:

http://alturl.com/wjtkn
Rafa will play in Abu Dhabi end of December.
Vamos Rafa!


J Beer Says:

@Patson. Surely Federer’s records on those surfaces are impressive. He will go down in history as one of the Greatest ever, no doubt about it. The shadow of Nadal (still growing) and the weak era are two huge arguments to say he can never be the GOAT though.


hawkeye Says:

Sirius Says:

in order to be GOAT, you need these things

1. H2h positive against rog

CORRECTION: No, not against “rog”, but against your main rivals. “rog” has a losing record vs Nadal (understatement) and Muzz (also losing record vs Nole since 2009 when he matured mentally and physically).

2. Olympic singles gold medal. (singles gold, remember? It can’t be anything else)

(CORRECTION: no, not a requirement, but certainly a consideration)

3. A DC title.

(CORRECTION: no, not a requirement, but certainly a consideration. Not “a” Davis Cup but I think multiple Davis Cups are key. Rafa has FOUR for example. Often an excuse from the Federazzi that Spain has more depth than Switzerland however Nole won with Serbia and Fed has only played in one non-relegation DC tie over the last 10 years).


Brando Says:

Right now Fed is the undisputed GOAT. Period. The h2h v Rafa is irrelevant- and I say this as a firm Rafa fan- since Rafa for me isn’t quite there yet. Right now both Sampras and Laver are at the same level or greater than Rafa. However: Rafa is still playing and IF he were to get say 16 slams then automatically the h2h becomes a factor as he then would be a direct rival to Fed in such conversations. Right now though nothing’s really changed at all. Time will tell eventually just not right now IMO.


Perfect fan Says:

With all due respect to rafa & fans….i wud say Roger is currently greater of the two (sorry, I wudn’t say GOAT….as I still believe it is really diff to determine unless someone touches 20 or more…them I may be tempted)

But rafa is definitely in a great position to upstage fed following his uso win….he has opened a world of optimism and belief for himself and fans worldwide. I hav no doubt that rafa will have a great 2014 season…i believe at least 2 and possibly 3 slams for him. But then it all boils down to his 2015 season…which is the trickiest part. If he gets at least his fav paris title….he will dethrone fed for sure soon enough to finally end the most popular debate in tennis ever. But if he goes slamless in ’15 or limp out of the tour….i wud say curtains for rafa and hopes of his fans…he may end up at 15 or 16 probably.

But all said, I believe roger is best of the two up till now……

Gives me goosebumps sometimes…..thinking what the next couple of years is going to unfold…….

coz everytime we predict something b4 start of a season (which seems most likely at that moment of time)….something strange and sensational happens……how many had guessed that rafa will return like a terminator in ’13……how many guessed that roger will win a slam in ’12, let alone getting back to no. 1…..who had even in his wildest dream thought of nole’s rising in ’11.

God….don’t tell me someone is going to achieve a clean sweep of slams in ’15. Its TENNIS….u never know ;-)


hawkeye Says:

Exactly PF, I’m amazed at how quickly the tennis landscape changes (especially in terms of top dog) and even more amazed at how sure prognosticators continue to be as they are constantly proven wrong.

Too funny.


Sirius Says:

@alison,

you’re welcome :)

@brando,

the question still remains how do you define a GOAT??


SmashingAces Says:

For me, Agassi was and probably still is the most exciting player to watch. This doesn’t make him ‘The Best’ but his record speaks for itself. Federer has the all round game, none of his shots are the best in the world but all are in the top 3. He has/had no weaknesses. Rafa, if he can stay injury free, will take Feds slams record! He has more wins to come. I enjoy watching all 3 for completely different reasons!


holdserve Says:

I think 2014 could be Muzz’s year if he recovers well from back surgery. The back has been bothering him a lot. He is due that 3 slams in a year which the other big 3 have had ( Fed : 2004, 2006, 2007; Rafa: 2010; Nole: 2011)


gonzalowski Says:

Sirius, with my last comment I meant, as a little detail in the Rafa-Fed controversy, that it’s true that Rafa hasn’t won indoor Wtf, but at the same time Fed has never won none of the 2 “sea level-alttitude” Master events, Rome and Montecarlo.
Rafa has won all type of Masters events, apart of indoor Paris.
It’s only a little idea I had, man! ;)
I still consider Fed avant of Rafa, but we’ll see…
I’m with Agassi: Laver, Fed and Rafa above the others.


Sirius Says:

@Gonzalowski,

you can’t win everything. Fed may never win those tourneys, rafa may never win wtf or paris. I don’t care. I’m just getting a bit tired of this ALL OF A SUDDEN GOAT DECIDING situation. Thats why i was a bit harsh in my post, sorry for that

i don’t believe there’s any goat in tennis. I know only one kind of goat. It has four legs and for sure it doesn’t play tennis


Andy Says:

To those on the Fed side of the debate: don’t you see, the very fact that there’s an argument means you’ve already lost.

Fed was supposed to be the hands-down, slam dunk GOAT. He had the pretty game, the week after week at #1, and when he passed Sampras’ GS totals, he was a lock for GOAT that would never be surpassed.

But there are too many cracks in the facade now. One crack here or there does not bring the entire GOAT argument down, but enough cracks will make the statue crumble. Losing H2H to Rafa. No gold medal. No Davis Cup title. Rafa, his contemporary, has more Masters 1000 tournaments. Worse winning percentage than Rafa. Only one FO when Rafa was out injured.

The fact is, Rafa may not be the slam dunk GOAT — but it will never, ever be Fed again. Fed was a slam dunk, but now he will not be able to add to his legacy. The fact that he’s not retired and we’re already arguing that Rafa, his contemporary, has or will likely unseat him, means he already lost.

There can be no question for GOAT. When there are questions, then you no longer have a GOAT. You just have a great player was bested in many ways by another. Fed fans, you have already lost, no matter what happens to Rafa after today.


Giles Says:

@Andy. Great post. Spot on.


Sirius Says:

“There can be no question for GOAT. When there are questions, then you no longer have a GOAT.”

That is why no player can ever be declared as GOAT


J Beer Says:

Andy said it exactly as it is. I would like to add that the fact that Fed has been called GOAT since 2004. For how many of those nine years can we say he actually was the Slam Dunk GOAT? I will open the bidding and say ‘zero’. He was the world no. 1 for multiple years, that’s all (a wonderful achievement, but no reason to start taking things way out of context).


J Beer Says:

Andy said it exactly as it is. I would like to add that the fact that Fed has been called GOAT since 2004. For how many of those nine years can we say he actually was the Slam Dunk GOAT? I will open the bidding and say ‘zero’. He was the world no. 1 for multiple years, that’s all (a wonderful achievement, but no reason to start taking things way out of context).


Frankie Says:

Roger: How many year-end champs have you won?

Rafa: …… Que? (then scratches butt)


skeezer Says:

“the very fact that there’s an argument means you’ve already lost.” Then goes on with an argument for Rafa.
So much intellegence here.


Patson Says:

@J Beer:

From 2004-2007, Roger ended up winning 11 out of the 16 majors. By the end of 2007, despite trailing Pete’s 14, Roger was more or less being considered a slam dunk GOAT by the press at that time. His inability to beat Nadal especially on clay was considered a mere anomaly. 2008 was Nadal’s break-through year but Fed still won a major, and 2009 was Federer’s resurgence.

I still remember a Wimbledon commentator saying as soon Nadal won and fell to the ground ‘There is a new man at the helm of men’s tennis: Rafael Nadal’. That match meant that Federer will no longer be able to have a streak like that from 2004-2007.

I agree that what was being said about him in the press back in 2007 when Federer won 3 slams the 3rd time; they are no longer saying that.


Ben Pronin Says:

If Federer isn’t the GOAT, then tennis has no GOAT.


Patson Says:

@Ben

If Laver hadn’t turned pro, there may not be a GOAT conversation simply because the bar would’ve been impossibly high to surpass. Laver had 11 grand slams and 9 pro slams. That’s a GOAT candidate right there.

Roy Emerson benefited greatly because of Laver’s absence. Laver’s head-to-head against Emerson is something like 49-18.

So I disagree with your statement. Laver’s records are nothing to sniff at.


AR Says:

Between the following two groups of accomplishments, which is the more impressive?

1. Superior h2h against main rivals, career slam, Davis cup, Olympics singles gold, 2 years of dominance (not consecutive), record number of titles at 1 slam.

2. Record number of slams, career slam, record number of weeks ranked number 1 (both total and consecutive), sharing record number of titles at 3 slams, consistency steaks at slams (holding record for consecutive finals, semis, AND quarters), 4 consecutive years of dominance, Olympic silver (singles) and gold (doubles).

I think it’s pretty obvious whose resume is more impressive.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Great post from Tennis Fan @9.23 am,the next couple of years will be exciting in terms of tennis,i think Rafa will be hell bent on trying to surpass Roger,whether or not he does is another matter,either that or he will kill himself trying,although its still my belief that Roger will eek out maybe 1 or 2 more before hes done.


Ben Pronin Says:

I’m not sniffing at anything. But I find it really hard to call someone who played in the 60s the best of any sport.


James Says:

Roger Federer comes closest to being the tennis GOAT IMO.

The fact that he has been hopeless against his biggest rival (another all time great) Rafa Nadal since 2008 may be the main reason why tennis greats such as Agassi, McEnroe or Wilander hesitate to crown him the GOAT.

Nadal has 13 slams, so he can’t be the GOAT if someone from his own era has more slams than him.

Nadal needs a few more slams to be considered greater than Federer. As of now, Federer is the greater player of the two. But Nadal is 27 and has time on his side.


Hamza Says:

Tennis X Hippy Chic: Agreed. Federer’s best chance remains the All-England club. Just like Murray, I wouldn’t be surprised if Federer takes some specific decisions in terms of his schedule to solely focus on Wimbledon.

On the other hand, Murray is yet to have a a year where he wins multiple majors. He’s too good a player not to do that. Will it be 2014 ? or 2015 ?
For 2014, the interesting encounter would be Nadal vs Murray. I believe there’ll be quite a few of these in 2014.

For Nole, the challenge remains to get his 2011 mojo back. The mental edge seems to be what he’s lacking.

Finally, has Rafa ever defended a title off-clay ? If not, his own history is against him. His off-clay performance has historically lasted a year. Will he be able to change that in 2014 ? As a Rafa fan, I sure hope he does that because he can. Such is the positivity in this guy that if you tell him something is impossible, he’d probably say “Even the word impossible spells ‘i’ ‘m’ possible”

2014 could be the year when many legacies are shaped , and that’s why it’s going to be so exciting.


James Says:

@AR, if they both retire today, Federer would have had a greater career than Nadal. No question there.

If we compare their accomplishments at age 27 each then that’s a different thing. I believe what Nadal has achieved at 27 trumps Federer’s at 27. JMO.


James Says:

Also, I don’t doubt that Federer can win another slam before he’s done with his tennis career. Whether he does it or not is up to him. Wimbledon next year is his best chance.

The top players today are very good on the HCs and clay to some extent as they play a lot of tennis on these two surfaces. Most of the current top players aren’t that great on grass. Understandbly so because they only play on it for like a month. Fed’s best chance is on grass. Wimby 2014 could be his last chance to add another Wimbledon crown to his GOAT-like resume.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Hamza im a massive Rafa fan too,Murrays my second favourite,and from a selfish point of view i would love them to meet in some finals especially GS as its a win/win senario for me lol,i dont believe Rafa has defended a none CC title so indeed history is against him,however never has doesnt necassarily mean never will so we will see,this year was actually unusual for him in the sense as he lost 1st round at Wimbledon,but went on to win the USO who saw that coming ?not me for sure,especially after missing the USO last year too,i actually thought Murray was going to go on a tear,thats the beauty and the unpredictability of this beautiful game though i suppose.


SG1 Says:

Nadal has 13 slams, so he can’t be the GOAT if someone from his own era has more slams than him.

——————–

They played in the same era, but not the exact same one. Rafa is 5 years younger. He is presently on track to being the GOAT. He seems like a GOAT shoe-in if he keeps up what he’s been doing. No guarantees though. It’s easy to get off the rails and not find your way back. Just ask Tiger Woods. Another guy who looked ready to be the GOAT. Last I checked, most people still consider Nicklaus the GOAT. I do think that Tiger’s best golf is the best ever played but right now, I don’t think he’s the GOAT.

If all the tennis stops right now, even with the h2h discrepancy, I think Fed is a little ahead from a GOAT stand point. However, I think Nadal passes Federer if he gets to 15 slams. Then he’s close in slam numbers and has a winning record against all his rivals (and overwhelmingly against Federer). And Rafa’s competition has been ridiculously good.

I’ve said before that I think that Fed’s first 7 slams were won in a bit of tennis vacuum. Not his fault but there was this kind of hole between Agassi/Sampras who were already past their prime and Nadal/Nole/Murray. You can only beat who’s in front of you, which Roger did, but it’s clear that once the competition got tougher he wasn’t nearly as dominating.


SG1 Says:

Now if Roger finds some way to put a good run together and takes out Rafa convincingly in a semi or the final of slam (particularly at RG), and then win the slam, I would have to re-evaluate things in my own mind. 18 slams and taking out a prime Rafa when you’re of your prime? That would be an incredible accomplishment. Is it likely that Roger could beat Rafa at RG? No. But what a story it would be.


Hamza Says:

@SG1

That’s a good post.


Ben Pronin Says:

If Federer had won the 2011 French Open I think this discussion would be very different.

SG1, hard to argue, but I’ll add a little asterisk. Nadal needs to get to 15 off of clay to be greater than Federer.


Steve 27 Says:

2014 and 2015 are key years.
Who has a crystal ball?


hawkeye Says:

AR Says:

I think it’s pretty obvious whose resume is more impressive.

Agreed, Rafa’s.

Ben Pronin Says:
I’m not sniffing at anything. But I find it really hard to call someone who played in the 60s the best of any sport.

Agreed.

Federer needs to get to 14 off of weak era to be greater than Rafa.


holdserve Says:

Why would Nadal need 15 off of clay to be greater than Federer?
Fed needs to win 3 consecutive slams on 3 different surfaces, reverse the h2h with Rafa, win at least 5 clay slams, win Olympic gold to be considered greater than Rafa.
Fed unfortunately is not in the running for GOAT as long as he has that h2h against another multiple grand slam winner in his era.


skeezer Says:

@ben
Truth!


skeezer Says:

@holdserve
H2H, H2H, H2H, H2H!!
Any other GOAT argument?
H2H, H2H, H2H, H2H!!
This is not boxing, its against a feild of players to win a title.
And….
Fed has the most, the most consistent, the most varied, and the most important.
Give your uninformed opinions a rest.


Thomas Says:

Don’t really think there is a GOAT tbh.


Perfect fan Says:

Hello fellas………..

I checked a crystal ball and here are the predictions for 2014……….

1. There will be 4 GSs.

2. First one will be AO and las one be USO.

3. OMG…wats this??…..RAFA fans will start cheering for FED to keep going and don’t retire …….and FED Fans will cheer for RAFA to reach the 17 mark……

4. GOD!! this is a shocker………once fed & rafa get tied at 17, FEDAL fans will then resolve all their differences online and share their love and admiration for each other……….even go the distance by apologizing for their harsh comments.

5. Take this….even crazy & eerie…………….FED & RAFA will come on TV shoulder hugging and saying,
“Long-Live FEDAL fans….we are nothing without you…..keep loving us…..but plz-plz-plz stop hating each other, stop this FED-RAFA racism….and love the sport itself “TENNIS”….respect your fav players opponents and don’t disregard them…..we-love-you……”
and then they start hi-fiving and hugging each other even joined by nole, murray and horde of other players.

HOLY Sh!t…..Wats happening….this is insane. :(


skeezer Says:

@PF
Sorry, you are not the pulse of the Fedal wars. If you read atttentively, the rafafanatics keep pushing Rafa’s goatness whilst pissing on Feds accomplishments. The only argument these types ride on over and over isH2H. This is why Davy is so popular in this argument. Every player has a bad matchup. Does it dictate the deicsion of a players greatness? No way.

In accumulating records, and achievements in the mens game, its not about beating a singular player in a singular matchup. Tennis was never designed as a game to measure a player’s success as such. This really is all about the ignorant rafafanatic who is blinded by love of a man, his hot sexiness, not of the game.
Not saying that Rafa is not great, but a majority of ones accomplishments on 1 surface doesn’t make one GOAT by a LONG shot.


Perfect fan Says:

Its ok skeezer…..

I was jus tryin to make u all guys smile after such a long exhausting heated debate on the “hottest debate topic ever in tennis”.

Seriously i love both gangs….at least by chatting, we come to know a lot of facts and records by these 2 legends….i mean u guys are really special to this sport and without these kinda debates….i doubt the popularity of fedal may not be that much hotter….its guys like u that contribute to the popularity of players, the rivalry and what not….

anyways…love u mate….keep sharing !!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Personally i have never cared about H2Hs as a basis for an argument,the only thing i care about is my favourite beating whomever is stood in front of them at any given time,its great Rafa has such a good record against Roger but its not the be all and end all though,and it shouldnt be used as a slant on Rogers legacy,im sure if you asked most Rafa fans honestly im sure they would much rather have the 17 GS that Roger has,as opposed to the H2H that Rafa has against Roger.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Whether or not Rafa will overtake Roger or not remains to be seen,but the idea that we are actually discussing it as a possibility makes the tennis landscape very exciting and very interesting.


skeezer Says:

@PF
Gotta say, you ride the wave well!
;)


Perfect fan Says:

Thanx skeezer :)

But tell u what….I strongly believe that Fed is the better player of FEDAL as of now and i don’t need anyone’s facts to agree or disagree to that. I admit I’m a fed fan but my declaration of fed being better is not biased at all.

But i also agree that if rafa eclipses his GS record….he will be better without any doubt. I don’t believe in any other scales truly apart from the GS count which is the ultimate test.

Yeah..i too believe that considering h2h as a factor to determine who is best of all is far-fetched….but then i don’t have to convince anybody to believe that….it is what it is.

But never the less, i have always believed that FED & RAFA careers are beautiful, amazing, most importantly different…….and for that they shud thank each other. coz’ i feel if rafa didn’t belonged in fed’s gen, fed wud have amassed countless titles and that wud have been very boring & monotonous…..


nitesh Says:

If rafa wins AO and gets beaten by djokovic in FO final 2014 hows that for tennis


James Says:

If Rafa wins the AO next year, I doubt Novak can stop him on clay in Paris. If Novak somehow beats Nadal and wins the FO, great for him and his fans. He’s a great player and deserves to be recognized as one of the best in history.

I’m glad Rafa earned most of his slams against two all time greats in Federer and Djokovic. Not surprised, Rafa thanked Novak for their USO final match in NY.


Perfect fan Says:

“Shriekopova”….come back soooon….i m missin u dearly. :(

C’mmon !! ;)


gonzalowski Says:

I’ll continue with the Fedal h2h (sorry) :) , as a funny controversy.
On one side, the same Rafa expressed that is not very important: Chelsea won his 2 matches against Manchester, but this last team won Premier league, so it was the best team.
By the other side, legends like Agassi, JMac or Wilander know that h2h is important in this Fedal thing ( to which level?)


hawkeye Says:

Perfect fan, maybe you are a perfect fan!

Need more like you around, sure no?

h2h against main rivals (note plural) is but one factor in my opinion along with many others.

For some to claim Davy’s 6-5 as a bad matchup for Rafa and think it is comparable to 21-10 is both telling and hilarious!!!


Ben Pronin Says:

Nadal needs to get to 15 off of clay. As in, his next 2 slams need to be off of clay. If his next 2 slams are both in Paris, what does it tell us about his greatness that we don’t already know? Nothing.

I’m not making up random milestones for Nadal. I don’t care if you make them up for Federer, no one cares. I think if Nadal wins the Australian Open again, this year or whenever, the debate will change in dynamic big time. 2 Career slams, something never done in the open era. Might not even have to get past 14 to be the GOAT.


Tennis for Life Says:

Ben
I do not agree
Winning more FOs may not be important for Rafa
But it is important for him to stop others from winning FO
Just imagine the GOAT debate if he had won FO in 2009


the DA Says:

Apparently Nole just announced his engagement to Jelena. Congrats. Who’s next: Rafa/Xisca or Andy/Kim?


Tennis for Life Says:

If Nole wins FO 2014 it will give him a career slam.
If Fed wins FO 2014 it will give him his second career slam.
Rafa should make sure such things don’t happen to keep his nose ahead of others in the GOAT race.


holdserve Says:

skeezer, h2h against another multiple slam winner and a fellow no. 1 in his own era cannot be wished away. It is a requirement of Goatdom to have positive h2h against fellow greats.
A necessary but not sufficient condition.
It is necessary to have a positive h2h against all the fellow greats in your era to be a GOAT. Fed fails this test so cannot be the GOAT.
Rafa satisfies this necessary test but the condition is not sufficient by itself to make him the GOAT.
But Rafa can be the GOAT. Fed can never be unless he reverses that fatal h2h.
You can say someone saying the sun rises in the East is an uninformed opinion. But facts are facts.
Feel sorry for you skeezer and other Fed fans. To some extent understand the frustration and hatred that is there on the internet against the guy who irretrievably damaged Fed’s legacy.


holdserve Says:

With the way Nole has shaped up his game on clay, I am not sure Rafa can keep Nole from winning French Open. In any case even if Rafa maintains his stranglehold on French Open till 2016 when he is likely to retire, Nole can win it in 2017 and complete a career slam or even a calendar slam!
The GOAT debate can never be over and even the greatest of this era cannot be determined before all the Big 4 have retired.


Ben Pronin Says:

H2H is not a requirement of GOATdom.


holdserve Says:

Ben Pronin, of course you are making up conditions for GOATdom. There is no officially laid down rule which says clay slams don’t count. It is a rule made up by you.


holdserve Says:

By clay slams I mean French Open grand slam titles.


Ben Pronin Says:

Nope. I didn’t say clay slams don’t count. I said “If his next 2 slams are both in Paris, what does it tell us about his greatness that we don’t already know? Nothing.”

Nadal is the greatest clay court player ever. There’s simlpy no discussion here. If he continues to win on clay, what will it tell us? He’s better than himself on clay? He’s the greatest greatest clay courter? It’s cemented to such an extent that it makes no difference what he does on the surface from now on. He can stop entering any and all clay court tournaments for the rest of his career and it won’t matter, no one’s touching those records for a long time (if ever).

Regardless of what specific criteria you use to determine the GOAT, I think we can all agree that overall greatness is the most important thing. Nadal has 2 US Opens, 2 Wimbledons, and 1 Australian Open. If those numbers end up being 2, 3, and 2 when he retires, it’s probably safe to say he’s the GOAT. Unless Federer adds to his own records. But that’s looking more and more unlikely.


holdserve Says:

Positive h2h against fellow greats is a requirement of goatdom by definition.

First you have the h2h against the field. If you consistently beat most players you will be in most finals, have multiple slams and be no. 1 sooner or later. You are then classified as a great.
Second you have the h2h against fellow greats in your era which determines who is greater.
To be the greatest you must be greater than all the greats in your era.
If you have an adverse h2h against a fellow great, you are disqualified.
h2h by itself against fellow greats cannot determine the GOAT but it can disqualify someone.
h2h is the only way you can compare two players but sufficient number of important matches need to be played by the two to make it statistically significant.
In case of fellow greats playing in the same era, they are likely to meet significant number of times in important matches usually finals and semifinals of slams and Masters because of the seeding system. So their h2h against each other is statistically significant as a way of comparing the two.

You toss a coin and it comes up heads. You cannot assume it will always be heads. But you toss it 31 times and 21 times it comes up heads……..?


skeezer Says:

^so true. And to add, outside of clay slams, who current and in history has a better record on surfaces other than Clay?


skeezer Says:

^was in response to Bens post


queen Says:

Why the hell do u have problem with clay slams? Can somebody PLEASE explain this nonsense to me? Why are they any less valuable than any other slams? I bet fed would not mind have more RG than one??????


Ben Pronin Says:

Holdserve, how often do we discuss McEnroe’s h2h against his rivals or the field? How often do we discuss Sampras’s h2h against his rivals or the field? How often do we discuss Laver’s h2h against his rivals or the field?

Rivalries in tennis are a novelty. It’s always great to say “I remember when Sampras and Agassi battled” or “Remember those classic Fedal matches?” But they don’t have anything to do with records. No one compares Borg and McEnroe by their h2h against each other or against others, they’re compared by their accomplishemnts ie. titles, slams, time spent being number 1, consecutive streaks, incredible years, etc.

The only reason the Fedal h2h is discussed so much is because we are still watching it unfold. It’s always nice to see them put on a great match. But it’s irrelevant to their GOATness. As a Nadal fan, why are you so hell bent on making it matter? Wouldn’t you rather Nadal attain GOAThood by winning lots of slams and titlees and being number 1 and all that good stuff? Why do you resort to this crutch?


Tennis for Life Says:

If you ignore clay Federer and Sampras are neck to neck with respect to all time records.
If you ignore grass Rafa has the best ever record.
If you ignore hardcourts Rafa trumps every other al time great.


queen Says:

Ben pro, as a fed fun why r u so hell bent to disregard h2h? Does it hurt too much?


queen Says:

Ben pro, u know why nadal’s fans count h2h? Because if somebody claims to be the best but has a losing record against another great player that really shows he is not the best until he has a winning record against everybody else. That is why h2h matters.


queen Says:

And u know what people will be saying when fed retires? The best of all time…but he could not beat Nadal…hmm


Tennis for Life Says:

In simple terms…
Take away clay Fed and Pete are co GOATS.
Take away grass Rafa is the GOAT.
Take away hardcourts Rafa is the GOAT again.
And Rafa has more time to add to his legacy.
Even this “take away” short cut won’t help Rafa haters in the long run.


holdserve Says:

Ben, I believe in logical arguments. I am not interested in proving Rafa is the GOAT.
He is undoubtedly one of the greatest and so is Federer. Both are tennis geniuses as are Nole and Muzza.
I object to fans claiming Fed is the greatest when he isn’t greater than Rafa.


queen Says:

And u know what people will be saying when Nadal retires? Nadal the GOAT slayer…lol


Ben Pronin Says:

Isn’t Federer greater than Nadal at 3 of the 4 slams? Isn’t he greater on 2 of the 3 surfaces (3 of 4 if you count carpet but we can’t since it hasn’t been used in so long)?

Nadal creeping up the GOAT ladder is obviously making it harder to call Federer the GOAT. But, as I stated earlier, if tennis has a GOAT then it’s Federer. Otherwise it’s no one. Unless Nadal surpasses Federer in a few key areas.


Patson Says:

@Ben

Tennis CAN have a GOAT and it hasn’t ABSOLUTELY HAVE to be a person named Federer or Nadal. Babe Ruth is considered the greatest baseball player, Don Bradman is considered the greatest batsman in cricket, Nicklaus is considered the greatest golf player and they played the game during and before the 70s. Just because these people played the game before we were even born doesn’t mean they cannot be the greatest. Just like we are focussing on accomplishments for Federer and Nadal, past greats should be evaluated in the same vein. Doesn’t matter if they played on 2 surfaces, or with wooden rackets or anything else. The point is that they played the same game which we are watching now.

P.S Nicklaus played in the 80s as well but his wins came in the 60s and 70s.


Tennis for Life Says:

Nadal need not surpass each and every record of Federer.
If that is the case then Fed needs to surpass some of Rafa’s records. Ex. MS titles, gold, longevity, career win-loss record over the field, etc.


hawkeye Says:

Borg couldn’t handle PMac’s eventual domination over him and losing record.

If Agassi had a 21-10 h2h vs Sampras, Pete would not have been the GOAT.

This is well known and remembered tennis information.

Seriously.


James Says:

I’m with Ben Pronin. Rafa needs a couple more non clay slams to be considered greater than Federer.

Winning the AO to complete a double career slam would be a huge achievement. If/when he achieves that and wins another slam or two, he should be considered greater than Federer.

But to be the GOAT, I think Nadal needs to wins more slams than Federer. If not, he could still be considered the greatest of his time but not of all time.


SG1 Says:

Ben Pronin Says:
If Federer had won the 2011 French Open I think this discussion would be very different.

SG1, hard to argue, but I’ll add a little asterisk. Nadal needs to get to 15 off of clay to be greater than Federer.

———————————–

I agree with you. I think Rafa needs a couple of more slams off the clay to be a legitimate GOAT.

I do believe that the H2H thing is important though. I don’t think Roger needs to have winning record against Rafa to be the undisputed GOAT but the their H2H needs to be close. Problem is, the match up is so lopsided in Rafa’s favor that it’s hard to ignore. And I believe it’s even more lopsided in slams (not sure though). Consistently beating the best of your peers has to mean something.

Let’s look at it this way. If you reverse Roger’s record against Rafa, Roger is well into 20 slam territory. At over 20 slams, how can anyone state that Roger isn’t the GOAT with a straight face? Here’s a case where H2H is important. Also consider that Roger lost matches to Rafa when he was at the peak of his powers.

Right now, I still see Roger as the GOAT. However, I just don’t think he will be the GOAT in 2 or 3 years from now. It’s all on Rafa’s racket.


Perfect fan Says:

1. slams – fed has 17 to rafa’s 14….adv. fed
2. wtf – fed has 6 to rafa’s nil….adv. fed
3. Olympics singles- fed has silver to rafa’s gold….adv. nadal
4. Masters – fed’s 21 to rafa’s 26….adv nadal
5. h2h – fed’s 10 to rafa’s 21….adv nadal
6. no.1 ranking record….adv fed
7. dominance(in terms of 3 or more slams per season)- fed’s 3 to rafa’s 1….adv fed

overall- fed’s 4 to rafa’s 3….which pretty much sums it “who’s better” now.

but 2 years from now….”finger-crossed.”


hawkeye Says:

^^^in majors.


SG1 Says:

I just don’t think there are many GOAT candidates who have been owned by any of their rivals.


hawkeye Says:

If Roger was 21-10 or even 5-6 vs Rafa h2h and all else unchanged, he would be the undisputed GOAT IMO.


hawkeye Says:

SG1, exactly.

Sampras, Laver and Nadal did/do not have significant losing records to ANY other player.


hawkeye Says:

PF, nice comparison except Rafa’s achievements were done during a much stronger era.

Advantage Rafa!


SG1 Says:

If I had to pick one guy to play for my life…it would be Nadal. They guy doesn’t have an ounce of quit in him.


Ben Pronin Says:

SG1, the Fedal case is incredibly intriguing because of this. I don’t know what to tell you. I can’t say, hands down, that Federer is the GOAT and Nadal is the single reason for this. But to me, Nadal isn’t better than Federer. Not in terms of appeal, but in terms of accomplishments. When you look at how their careers have played out especially. Federer, for so long, has been the model of consistency from the beginning of the year to the end of the year, even while losing to Nadal regularly on clay. Nadal has often struggled to maintain his form for an entire year. He’s had ups and downs almost every single season since his breakthrough. You can blame injury, but quite frankly history doesn’t care about injuries.

Maybe I’m wrong here, but I really think Nadal would be no where close to the player he is now if not for Federer. Federer, on the other hand, might have ended up a worse player, but would have accomplished a lot more if not for Nadal. I don’t think that’s the case for Nadal. With Federer as a target, Nadal has had to improve nonstop to get to where he is. He needed a winning streak of 32 matches to get the number 1 ranking. Subsequently, Djokovic needed a 43 match win streak to get there, and then some. Federer raised the bar to ridiculous heights. Nadal and Djokovic, really, just barely got there. I don’t think anyone has ever raised the bar to such an extreme like Federer did. If h2h is important, then this is even more so.

I also don’t think the Olympics matter at all in the GOAT discussion. It’s an awesome accomplishment, but what about all the greats from the past who didn’t even have the option of playing? It’s a tournament that comes around once a year. A big tournament, but almost completely irrelevant when deciding who’s the GOAT. Unless every single other record is even and this was a tiebreaker.

Hawkeye, we already discussed the Borg-McEnroe rivalry, there was no domination. And it’s irrelevant. People consider Borg the greater player.

“The point is that they played the same game which we are watching now.”
-Patson

The game is the same, but the sport surely isn’t.


Ben Pronin Says:

Sampras had losing records to plenty of players.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan just curious when you say two years from now fingers crossed,are you hoping Rafa will surpass Roger,or hoping he wont?if you want Rafa to surpass Roger that sounds rather strange coming from a Fed fan?unless you have switched race horses?love your posts BTW.


hawkeye Says:

Yes but Borg could never have been considered GOAT after he retired because PMac owned him in the end.

Federer was the model of consistency from 2004-07 consistently beating those he faced at that… time.

Olympics are relevant today and is therefore one of many factors in today’s GOAT nominees IMO.


Patson Says:

@Ben

“The game is the same, but the sport surely isn’t.”

All games evolve. Golf, cricket, baseball etc. Tennis is no exception. Different sport , sure but they played tennis, and so do these folks. The evolution of a game does not imply the irrelevance of past champions in modern-day GOAT debates. If one wants to do do so, then one should not use the word GOAT. GOAT by definition, HAS to include champions of the yore.


hawkeye Says:

Well, Ben, of course he did. No one said otherwise.

Here is a complete list. In only two cases is there a differential of 2. The rest are -1.

Nothing there comes anywhere near 10-21.

Pete dominated his main rivals.

Richard Krajicek (4–6)
Marat Safin (3–4)
Sergi Bruguera (2–3)
Andy Roddick (1–2)
Carlos Costa (1–1)
Kevin Curren (1–1)
Mikael Pernfors (0–2)
Roger Federer (0–1)
Miloslav Mečíř (0–1)
Yannick Noah (0–1)
Jay Berger (0–1)
Leander Paes (0–1)
Gilbert Schaller (0–1)
Christian Saceanu (0–1)
George Bastl (0–1)
Jay Berger (0–1)
Max Mirnyi (1–2)
Christo van Rensburg (1–2)
Paul Haarhuis (1–3)
Sergi Bruguera (2–3)
Derrick Rostagno (1–2)
Mark Keil (0–1)
Mikael Pernfors (0–2)


queen Says:

Olympics do not matter? Stupid. Everything what is tennis matters.


hawkeye Says:

^^ correction, four cases with a differential of two.


hawkeye Says:

Rafa won’t be the GOAT forever (just like Fed wasn’t, or Sampras before him, or Laver before Sampras).

As James Blake said, “In 10 years, whoever is No. 1 in the world at that time is the best at that time,” said Blake. “The game gets that much better. I think it’s partly because the training gets a little more specific, a little bit tougher. Guys are able to handle things more than they used to. The games just get bigger, faster, stronger. You see it in every sport.”

Continual improvement dictates GOAT evolution.


Ben Pronin Says:

I’m not saying the Fedal h2h isn’t bad, but it does little to damage Federer’s career as a whole and does only a little bit to make Nadal look great.

Look at it this way, what if the Fedal h2h was what it was but all in semis and quarters. And instead of beating Federer for slams, he lost to a Gonzalez or a Roddick or a Hewitt or something? It wouldn’t matter. Does Berdych’s winning record over Murray matter? No, because he never wins the title.

Nadal is an all time great because he has won 13 slams, 26? Masters titles, been number 1 for over 100 weeks including 2 (soon to be 3) year end finishes, etc. Not because he keeps beating the same guy over and over.


hawkeye Says:

Sorry Ben, but again, there would be nothing really to debate if Fed even had a near even record vs. Rafa.

It would be pretty much undeniable so it is more than just “little” damage to Fed’s credibility as GOAT.


Ben Pronin Says:

If they both stop playing right now, who’s the GOAT?


hawkeye Says:

And to be clear, the overwhelmingly unbalanced Naderer h2h doesn’t make Rafa GOAT, but it does preclude Roger IMO. It is not even a factor in Rafa’s GOAT resume other than it is part of his overall domination of his main rivals.


hawkeye Says:

Ben Pronin Says:
If they both stop playing right now, who’s the GOAT?

Rafa IMO.


Perfect fan Says:

@ Alison:

Thanx for asking that….well! firstly, I m a fed fan from the core of my heart….secondly, I respect & admire rafa immensely for being such a warrior by heart. he is a true fighter….cannot say the same about fed. this tells us how much talented fed is for making it look so easy when he was winning titles after titles during his prime, with such graciousness….and then came rafa with his own brand of play (which is now being followed by nole & andy)….he seriously took fed by surprise with his play especially the topspin forehand, even fed admitted same after he lost his 1st match to rafa at Miami masters…. that he was so uncomfortable playing his topspin and that doubt stayed with him like a mole in his mind.

yeah….now the answer to your curiosity is that I m a sucker for fedal matches, their records and their famed rivalry….TBH I m so obsessive about this is that I sometimes make my own analysis about future tennis seasons and the outcomes it will bore…but always the centre point would be fedal. now it really doesn’t matter to me if rafa goes on and get 18 slams….kudos to that and i’ll be too happy for rafa….but never-the-less I wud like roger to fight for his record and get a slam or more to make it even tougher for rafa to get there.

The point is I’m not the type to pray god and expect that rafa gets injured or pray that rafa don’t play well enough to reach 17 majors. I will be rather thrilled to know that rafa had it in himself to prove all wrong by being the slam king. But definitely, being a passionate fed fan….I have never lost hope in fed and I truly believe he could still surprise us all like 2012….touchwood!! :)

Thanks again Alison, for the lovely gesture :)


Hamza Says:

I can’t help but say that the GOAT discussion is so intriguing. It’s ridiculous yet so enticing. The GOAT is like the Iron throne in Game of Thrones. There is an ongoing war between the king and the one who aspires to be. There is no truce between the two, there is no sharing of the kingdom. There can only be one king. Federer sits on the Iron throne of tennis for now but the throne is not kind to those who sit on it.

Sorry for the rant. Carry on.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan its great that your a passionate Federer fan,but also one that doesnt feel the type of annimosity for Rafa that some of you fellow fans do,im pretty much the same when it comes to Roger,i have nothing but admiration for the guy,anyway whether or not he does surpass Roger remains to be seen,but its as sure as hell is fun and exciting seeing him giving it a damn good try,whatever happens both will go down in history as two of the games greats,and for me tennis is all the better for it,and BTW your welcome :)..


hawkeye Says:

perfect fan, you are a perfect fan.

Hamza, yes, intriguing, ridiculous and enticing at the same time for sure, no?

Only stick in the muds say there can be no GOAT. What fun is that???


Ben Pronin Says:

Based on what? Federer has more slams and weeks at 1 and those are the 2 biggest factors. Nadal has more Masters and French Opens.


C!P! Says:

it’s mind-boggling how people wish to compare 2 players ,yet disconsider the H2H between them ,it’s ilogical!


Tennis for Life Says:

Who said slams and weeks at no.1 are the two biggest factors ?


C!P! Says:

to me Rafa is the best ,right now , even if achievements wise he is a bit behind Federer ,for the moment; but what i always admired on Rafa was his versatility and the will to ever improve something ,which i never saw with Fed; people said of Rafa he wouldnt last long ,he will fade quickly ( now he has 9 years in a row with at least one slam ,never done by anyone), people said ” yes he may beat Fed on clay but he won’t be able to beat Federer on grass or hard slams; people said “look ,he fears the bombers ,hard-hitters ,like Soderling ,Berdych,Del potro “(btw when is the last time one of them beat him?); people said he will never come back from such a lengthy and hard injury ,well he did it ,and he does this over and over, he conquers practically every obstacle one may think he wont be able to; and that is something; how many all time greats ,proved us they can ever improve ,adapt ,conquer all sorts of obstacles and still win big?


hawkeye Says:

Admittedly Ben, based on my opinion. Based on domination of your main rivals, quality of opposition, double-digit major titles, record masters titles, gold medal, four davis cups and (very subjective) intangibles such as his domination this year after seven months away with no professional competition.

Again, in my Humb1e opinion. I respect yours.


Sirius Says:

“rafa and his versatility”

that’s interesting. tell us more about this :)


hawkeye Says:

C!P!, yes exactly well said.

His continual improvement, drive to find solutions and succeed (combined with his other achievements) is a key intangible on his GOAT resume to be sure, no?


Patson Says:

I read somebody’s comment on telegraph a while back. It was a very interesting comment. It went something like this,

Let me compare the two: if I had one shot to get out of purgatory, I’d put my life on Rafa’s hands. But if I knew I had to stay in the purgatory forever, I’d watch Federer play forever.


C!P! Says:

i was talking to people that are open-minded , who take into consideration many factors (not only those that suit their liking); people who are more concerned with Rafa’s butt than his game, obviously are missing stuff!tennis stuff!


Teeg Says:

The h2h does matter and anyone who says it doesn’t is deluding themselves. It is just as glaring as Pete never having won the French. Its why Pete was never overwhelming proclaimed as the GOAT. Sure, he won the most slams, and had the most weeks at no.1, but never having won the French is a huge blemish on his CV. Same with Roger. Only thing his blemish is his negative h2h with his main rival. I do feel that Roger is the GOAT. But his record against Rafa does stick out.


James Says:

I think Nadal will most likely end his career as the greatest tennis player of his time, ahead of other all time greats like Federer and Djokovic and possibly Murray too. But to be the greatest of all time, he needs to surpass Roger’s slam record.

If Nadal really is that good, I believe he will win more slams than Federer even though he’s had to earn most of his slams against other all time greats.


C!P! Says:

The PAST belonged to FED , the FUTURE sides with RAFA, the PRESENT is OURs to enjoy!


Ben Pronin Says:

Once again, if tennis has a GOAT, it’s Federer. Can Nadal overtake him? Yes. Is Federer’s career perfect? No. But it’s as close as it gets right now.

I don’t understand how you guys can harp on the h2h for so long. You realize that this is the one big standout in Federer’s career. He’s so complete every where else, this is the thing that draws the most attention.

What about Federer’s 23 straight slam semis? 36 straight slam quarters? For almost a decade this guy was in the second week of every single slam regardless of surface, weather, player, what have you.

Day in and day out consistency that’s never been matched. And you guys harp on his record against one player. Tennis isn’t about one player. No sport is. It’s about the accolades. And Federer has the most.

Consider that Federer is only 4 slams ahead of Nadal. Only 4 slams. Only. As in, he’s a whole year of slams worth ahead of Nadal.

James, you say Nadal at 27 is more accomplished than Federer at 27. Is he? Federer had 15 slams before his 28th birthday and was heading towards his 5th year end number 1 finish.

“Who said slams and weeks at no.1 are the two biggest factors?”

Well let’s think about this. Every athlete, growing up, aspires to be a champion and to be the best. In tennis, being the ultimate champion means winning slams. Being the best means being number 1. What was Federer’s goal as a kid? Djokovic’s? Sampras’s? Roddick’s? To win Wimbledon and be number 1. None of these guys were thinking “I really hope I have the best h2h against everyone”. It’s something that tends to happen when you win a lot of events. Nadal has won a lot of events, he has a great h2h against almost everyone. But that’s not the end goal. So who says they’re the biggest factors? The players do.


Perfect fan Says:

If GOAT is jus the point of debate after all….
then I was thinking lets have 2 GOATs then coz fed fans will never accept rafa as GOAT and vice versa….moreover when we have millions & billions of goats in our planet, then whats wrong in having 2 in TENNIS.

but LOL….it then immediately struck me that still it won’t serve the purpose coz’ guess what….??

then the debate wud be which is the bigger one in size…who has the bigger horns…who’s hair is more shiny….LOL ;))

Well! I was thinking….is there anybody owning a goat and named it Federer or Nadal….I think that could possibly solve this near impossible riddle of who is GOAT….that,

“How many GOATs in the world are named Federer or nadal?”……. start the countdown folks. LMAO !!


hawkeye Says:

Weak era is, unfortunately for Fed, another asterisk for many.

I say unfortunate because he had no control over this and could only beat the “competition” put in front of him.

Again, my subjective opinion.


Teeg Says:

The h2h is a glaring stand out in Roger’s career. His ineffectiveness against his biggest rival cannot be underestimated. No other GOAT candidate before him had this dilemma.


hawkeye Says:

PF, there can be no debate, Fed’s hair is the Greatest of All Time.


Patson Says:

@Ben

“Once again, if tennis has a GOAT, it’s Federer”

If tennis has a GOAT, it’s Laver. If tennis has a Greatest-After-1980s, that’s Federer for now. Federer’s records are matched by Laver. I’m sorry but your insistence on discarding champions from the yore is misplaced. I’ve already rebutted your argument of ignoring the candidates from the 1960s by giving examples of baseball, cricket, golf etc.

If you want to say Federer is GOAT, that’s fine. But to say that nobody other than Federer can be claimed as a GOAT is plain wrong.


Teeg Says:

@Patson

Fully agreed.


James Says:

“James, you say Nadal at 27 is more accomplished than Federer at 27. Is he? Federer had 15 slams before his 28th birthday and was heading towards his 5th year end number 1 finish.”

That’s very impressive, Ben.

Let’s compare their titles at age 27:

Federer at 27 had 13 slams, 4 YECs, 16 Master shields, several 250s, 57 titles in total.

Nadal at 27 has 13 slams, OG, 4 Davis Cups, Record 26 Master shields, record 500 level tournaments, 60 titles in total, possibly more titles to come before the end of the year.

Ummm I think a slight edge to Rafa here. He has a better career winning % and h2h vs all top rivals, won a slam for 9 consecutive years (never been done before), has multiple slams on all surfaces.


Ben Pronin Says:

Another thing, if the h2h for Federer is such a glaring setback, then shouldn’t Nadal’s inability to be number 1 over a long period of time be a big setback for him? Nadal has basically been the greatest number 2 in the history of the sport. Can the GOAT be number 2?


SG1 Says:

Ben,

If they both stop playing now, Fed is the GOAT. But, that’s an unrealistic hypothetical situation. Nadal is 5 years younger. Nothing Federer can do about it.


Ben Pronin Says:

Federer had 15 slams. And when did Davis Cup become a single competition?


SG1 Says:

Serena hasn’t been No.1 very much. A lot of people seem to think she’s the GOAT.


James Says:

Federer was 27 in 2008 and his 13th slam was the US Open that year.

Davis Cups? They are counted because an individual’s brilliance can help his team win the cup. Nadal did just that.


tennisbro Says:

As a longtime Fed fan, I have been forced to reach conclusions based on performance facts. Rafa has proved that he has the desire and ability to step up his game when he needs to. Fed has neither the will or ability to do this – at least he hasn’t done it yet. Fed is only going to work so hard – art is beautiful but I’m not looking for tennis ballet but who works the hardest to win the match and who has the best and most consistent accuracy on the run – and I think this is Rafa even more than Nole – but even Djokovic has the desire and ability to up his game – so the Rafa/Novak contest is still on.


James Says:

I guess the GOAT battle will come down to how Nadal finishes his career. It’s on his racquet it seems.


C!P! Says:

Ben you dont make much sense ,and your logic has big flaws “can the GOAT be No.2?” really thats all you can come up with? Rafa was and will be very soon No.1 again , while that H2H in his favour will always stand; one can be called the greatest No.2 IF he has never been No.1 ,and that one is Villas; and by the way Rafa being No.1 102 weeks ,its not a short time ,no? not to mention achievements such winning a slam at least 9 years in a row ,as is right now, its way more important than those streaks you mentioned with semis and quarters ,did they give awards for quarters nowadays? you may take into consideration any trophy from slams ,to masters ,YEC ,DC,Olympics ,just live away the quarters and semis please! they dont win anything there.


C!P! Says:

but just to repeat your quetion Ben ,can your GOAT come up 2nd everytime he plays his longtime rival?


Rafaisthebest Says:

Very interesting discussion. I am a big fan of Rafa, but to be GOAT, Rafa has a few bases to cover:

1) Slams – overtake Roger, preferably with more Wimbledons

2)Weeks at No.1 – This is a no-brainer. 102 weeks pales in comparison to 302.

3)Tour Finals – The best players of the year play. Rafa needs to win this title and show he can dominate the entire tour through out the year and not 1 or 2 surfaces – through out the year.

Davis Cup does not count. What next Hop Man Cup? I think Federer and Djokovic have won that. Not Rafa!

All said, this Rafa fan can admire Roger and his greatness. Lot of times I wish Rafa would play like Roger – Rafa himself says so how it is not easy to do what Roger does. I will call Rafa the GOAT when Rafa himself tells everyone he is.


James Says:

@Rafaisthebest, very interesting post :)

As your moniker says, Rafa is the best. But to be the GOAT he needs to surpass Roger’s slam count. That’s all;) but it’s gonna be very difficult even for Rafa.


Ben Pronin Says:

I was gonna say some stuff, but I agree with rafaisthebest. So, there you go.


James Says:

LOL Rafa doesn’t need to win more Wimbledons than Federer nor spend more time at #1 ranking than Fed to be considered greater than the Swiss.

He’s guaranteed to be the year end #1 ranked player. He’s gonna add several more weeks to his current 102. He’ll be at least 150-200 weeks before he’s done with tennis.

I have no doubt that Rafa will win the WTF at least once before retirement. But is it a must? I think not. Just the way OG or DC isn’t a must for Roger.

If Rafa does the double career slam, it’s gonna be a HUGE achievement. I’m not sure it’s been done before in the Open Era.

Rafa is too humble to proclaim himself the greatest of all time. Hell! I’m yet to hear Roger say he’s the best or greatest of all time. If Rafa wins more slams than Roger, rafa doesn’t need to say anything. Like always, he’d rather his racquet do the talking for him. Then there’s the McEnroes, Wilanders, Couriers, Everts, Navratilovas, Murrays, Djokovics, and many more.


skeezer Says:

ben @ 3:16. killer post!
rafaisthebest
great post ;)


Ben Pronin Says:

James, sometimes the things you say really make me scratch my head. So the year end championships is the same as Davis Cup (a team effort) and the Olympics (4 players per country regardless of ranking, comes around once every 4 years)? Come on now…

Also, 150-200 is a HUGE range. That’s 1 or 2 years worth of being number 1. Let’s wait for him to get to 150 first. That still means that Federer was the best player in the world for twice as long as Nadal was. I don’t know why you guys like to ignore that (I mean I know why but I don’t get how).


C!P! Says:

trophies matter ,especially big ones , once you’ve reached world number 1 status ,and stayed there a long period (over 100 weeks)it’s enough ; that comparison should end here,cause imagine what Rafa has done this year he’s won 10 out of 13 tournaments he entered ,the only guy with 2 slams ,and 5 masters ,and at the end of the year there is a chance he might not be No.1 ,even if it is certain that in 2013 he won by far the most tournaments! does that seem fair to you? its practically the same logic as comparing weeks at no.1 to other achievements


C!P! Says:

by my count ,considering important tournaments (slams, masters ,YEC ,Olympic Gold) ,which are those where you need to compete against the best ,or need to qualify for, Federer is at 44 ,and Nadal is at 40 ,and when the stats are this close, one cannot discount the H2H , especially since that -4 gap is covered simply by the 6-2 edge Rafa has in slam finals


James Says:

Likewise, Ben. I don’t get it why you agreed with @rafaisthebest that Nadal needs to win more Wimbledons than Federer and also spend more time at #1 ranking.

I’m not sure the WTF is as big as many Fed fans make it sound. I’m sure Rafa will win it at least once. He should. But even if he never does it, no problemo. Slams matter much more and the OG I believe is more prestigious than the WTF.


Ben Pronin Says:

He said he prefers Nadal to win a few more Wimbledons, not more Wimbledons than Federer.


skeezer Says:

“its practically the same logic as comparing weeks at no.1 to other achievements”

if you’ve earned the number one spot and held on to it that long you its because you have won most all the achievements/titles.

??


James Says:

ok. My bad. Winning another Wimbledon would be great for Rafa but again not a must since he’s already won two times. I hope he wins at least one more though. Right now the AO is more important.

And great posts, @C!P.


queen Says:

WTF is not important at all. Whoever is less tired at the end of the year wins… Lol


Teeg Says:

@James

The YEC is a big deal. After the Majors, it is the most important
tournament. Yes, I would say even moreso than an Olympic gold. The Olympics really only took prominence when Graf won it in 88 along with her 4 Majors. Nobody knew what to call it since it had never been achieved before so they called it a golden slam. But the YEC have always been a big deal, big money, huge spectacle, everything. Having said that, I am with you in the belief that Rafa will eventually win it. Just like he’s done his entire career, he’ll find a way.


queen Says:

Good chance for Fed to win WTF this year. Cannot be too tired since he did not win much…


C!P! Says:

did you actually read what i just wrote above? then why is Rafa not yet no.1 this year? and maybe not even at the end of the year? if Djoko wins every tournament he enters till the end of the year ,he will have 7 titles ,Rafa already has 10 ,and if he doesnt add more points he wont be No.1! is that clear enough for you? so in this case who is the better player of the two ,the one with 10 titles ( including 2 slams and 5 masters) or the one who was all year world no.1 yet only won 1 slam and is for the year 1-3 H2H against Rafa?


C!P! Says:

my last post was meant for skeezer


Ben Pronin Says:

Nadal skipped a slam and lost in the first round of the other.


James Says:

@Teeg,

Rafa has a good chance this year to win the YEC, no?

It would be awesome if Rafa wins another AO for the double career slam and then wins the OG in Rio in 2016 :D a double golden career slam LOL
Doubt he’ll win another OG, but AO is very much possible.


Teeg Says:

@James

This year has to be his best chance. He’s playing better than ever. I thought the same thing in 2010, but after that grueling SF against Andy, I knew he’d be too spent for the final. But with his improved play on hc, I see no reason he can’t win it this year.

And wouldn’t that be awesome. To win the AO and become the
first male player to win a double career slam. He’d be 30 by the next Olympics. Should it be on clay, I think he has a shot. As long as he’s healthy and his body holds up.


C!P! Says:

yes, he skipped a slam ;yes he had periods of inactivity ,thats why he doesnt have more weeks at No.1 ,but what matters most is what he has done in the tournaments he has entered ,how many finals ,how many titles! Rafa has 13 slams in 36 tournaments entered (36%) ,Roger has 17 from 58 (29%)


Teeg Says:

@C!P!

Just as impressive is the fact that Rafa has made the finals of half the Majors he’s entered (18/36). That’s pretty good.


C!P! Says:

to me Olympic Gold is much more important and difficult to win than the YEC ,cause you have only one chance in 4 years, 6 games to play with best of 5 final , whereas at YEC ,you may actually lose once ,and still be in the competition and have a chance to win it ,which is un-tennis like; hell if you think about it ,you may lose twice in the group stage ,and if all results in the group go in your favour you may qualify with the 2nd spot and go play the semis ;and thats plain ridiculous!


C!P! Says:

to all of you who want to make an accurate comparison between the 2 players ,do it in percentages ,its the only accurate way .since one has started earlier ,and the other has more years ahead of him to play ; in the end isn’t tennis a game of percentages?:)


Teeg Says:

You could say the YEC is the most difficult tournament to win because it is the 8 best players for the year entered. And to win you have to beat players all ranked in the top ten. Look at Wimbledon this year. Murray did not face a top ranked player until the finals. The same thing could happen in the Olympics. Whereas at the Tour Finals, you face a top player from the get go.

The fact remains, the YEC have always been a prestigious tournament to win and after the 4 Majors, the most important.


Patson Says:

@Teeg

I agree. To Rafa’s disadvantage though, YEC are indoors and his indoor record is average. Indoor hard is his worst surface for sure. For Rafa, the problem is not the best 8 players that play. The problem is his game doesn’t translate that well indoors. Didn’t he say in a recent interview that he thinks it’s unfair they play YEC on the same surface ? He probably wants it to be played on clay just once. Having said that, I think he will eventually win it. He did make the finals once.


Rafaisthebest Says:

I don’t know why my fellow Rafa fans are making excuses for Rafa. He is not to hide behind excuses. We should not do it either.

Do you know the Grand Slam Rafa values the most? Wimbledon. I am sure he also knows how valuable a WTF is. Many experts refer to it as the 5th slam. Federer beat 5 top 10 guys to win the tournament. Djokovic did the same last year. Please tell me any tournament Rafa won beating 5 top 10 players?

Weeks at number 1? Are you serious? You are giving rafa fans a bad name by disregarding the number 1. Every kid playing tennis grows up with the dream of being no.1 in tennis. How can it be not important. In the last 10 years. Federer was no.1 for 300 weeks which amounts to 60% of the time. Nadal and Djokovic have been no.1 for 20% of the last 10 years. Rafa will have to log in more weeks at no.1. I am sure he is planning on that.

One more point. Ask yourself this question ” What would a kid dream about achieving “.

If he makes a list, it would look like

Winning Wimbledon. No.1 ranking, many Slams, many WTF. Very few kids play tennis dreaming of winning Monte Carlo, Davis Cup and Olympic medal [definitely not in tennis]. I am very glad Rafa actually values Wimbledon as the most important trophy in Tennis. As his fans, let us not disregard Wimbledon and weeks at no.1 because Roger has done better on that front. It suggests a very serious lack of knowledge when it comes to tennis history. Slams and No.1 is why tennis is played not so much for Davis Cup and Hopman Cup or that other team tournament before French Open.


Patson Says:

@Rafaisthebest

Spot on ! Although I’ll say that the kid most likely won’t know about WTF either. As a kid, all I knew about was Wimbledon.


Sônia Says:

Agassi used illicit substances (unfair), has no moral authority to assess.


skeezer Says:

Rafaisthebest,

Bringing some SANITY into the rafafanatic koolaid drinking imaginary fantasies! Well done in straightening them out on several points. The DC achievements, a team sport, for goat criteria was the biggest stretch so far I have ever seen, lol,

Good luck to your fav this year and next, if he continues this run the best ever award torch will be passed.


skeezer Says:

WTF is not a Slam, but it for sure belongs above any other tournies, thus the importance. Oympics belongs up there also, despite it only has been relevant the past few years.
In WTF, your playing the best 8 players that year in a shootout format, and not playing any qualie guys or 200th ranked players in the first 3 rounds like you usually do in Slams. Its intense from the get go.
As usual, its only rafafanatics who whine about its false “non” importance. Why?

Count on this, when(if) Rafa ever wins WTF it will become one of the great achievements in Rafa’s career by rafafanatics. All of the sudden, it will become 1 of the most important tournaments ever to this gang. Lol.
Mark it.


holdserve Says:

rafaisthebest is obviously a Fed fan. Shame on you my dear using such a base device as calling yourself Rafaisthebest to denigrate Rafa.
No Rafa fan is fooled. Nor are Fed fans fooled. They are pretending to be fooled so as to get some credibility for their claim that the little-more-than-an-exhibition WTF is the 5th slam!!! Unfortunately rafaisthebest came on too strong in expressing support for Fed’s lost cause claim to goatdom to really be credible!
Next time be a little logical so one can at least have a doubt about denouncing you as a fake!


skeezer Says:

“rafaisthebest is obviously a Fed fan”
Why, cause he/she doesn’t say what you need to hear, the Truth?
Rafafanatics live in a world all there own. And anything else is unacceptable.

And btw, callng WTF an “little-more-than-an-exhibition” just shows absolute ignorance and disrespect to all the players who have worked hard to earn there ranking and invitation to play in such a prestigious event, held at one of the premier venues in the world, the o2 arena in London. It also awards more points than any Masters, 1500.


holdserve Says:

skeezer even if Rafa wins WTF it isn’t going to become more important. Rafa kept winning Monte Carlo and he has won Rome umpteen times. Did we try to make either of them into the 5th slam although their claim is superior to that of WTF?
Only Fed fans think whatever records Fed has are more important and so declare Rafa has to surpass Fed’s records in order to be a GOAT.
How about Fed surpassing Rafa’s records to be the GOAT?


holdserve Says:

Can Fed be a true no. 1 if he was getting beaten by a No. 2? What is worse, this no. 2 hadn’t even reached his prime when he started thrashing Fed. Tut tut!
IN 2008 Rafa was 21-22 and we can start comparing Fed with Rafa from 2008. Rafa has the edge in slams, Masters etc. Haven’t calculated weeks at no. 1 but must be not far behind if not ahead.


holdserve Says:

What wasFed’s ranking before he was 22?

His long reign at no. 1 was in the weak era when the closest rivals he had were pre-prime Rafa, Nole and Muzz!


skeezer Says:

“Can Fed be a true no. 1 if he was getting beaten by a No. 2?”
Yes. Look at the record books. Study, research. Learn how the game of tennis rewards players. Not beating one, but beating a field of players through a tournament until the last man standing is the winner. Object; win the tournament, not beat one player and thats all, you win the tournament. The rule book doesn’t allow that.
Any more repetitive rehashing questions? This conversation is getting old and dumber than dumb and dumber.


skeezer Says:

One last add…
Lets see, what does the ATP(thats …Association of Tennis Professionals), not holdserve, say about the value of the WTF?
Masters series tournaments award the winner 1000 ATP points for the winner. WTF? 1500.
And someone here opined it was “little-more-than-an-exhibition”?


Patson Says:

@Skeezer:

The point system is a slippery slope. If you’d go by that logic, somebody winning 3 Masters in a season would get 3000 points while another guy winning a slam would get 2000 points. What would you prefer to have ? 3 years of winning a major or 3 years of winning 3 masters every year ? I’d go for the former. Andy Murray won tons of Masters, but it was his first major that got him the recognition, the respect and the right to be called amongst the Big 4.

Points are a slippery slope. Tread carefully I’d say.

WTF is the major tournament played indoors. It can be thought of as playing in conditions different from Grand slams (yes I know Wimbledon and AO have a roof). So irrespective of the points, it tests a player’s game by removing external elements i.e wind, sun etc. It is because of this reason the tournament has a certain importance to it.


Margot Says:

Yay! Ben Ainslie. The true GOAT!
BTW, as holdserve said, ages ago, surely all Raf?Rog arguements should be suspended, oh pleeeeaasee, until BOTH retire?


Margot Says:

Dunno why that question mark crept in there should be: Raf/Rog of course.


Giles Says:

@holdserve. I applaud your post Sept 26th 12.51 am. You saw through this fake Rafa fan. He/she is indeed a fed fanatic who deems it necessary to post under the blinkered moniker of “rafaisthebest”. Well done!


Teeg Says:

@Patson

Spot on.


gonzalowski Says:

Accepting that Fed is Goat right know,
I repeat my point with Wtf: Rafa hasn’t got this indoor big event, and not Paris indoor; and Fed hasn’t got sea-level altiitude clay Masters (Rome-Montecarlo)


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Just wondering if Novak were to surpass Rafa with weeks at number 1,does that make him a greater player than Rafa,even if Rafa ends his career with more than double the GS count,hypothetically speaking?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Agree with Rafaisthebest on the WTF front,i would love to see Rafa win one before hes done to complete the set,although like some i have found the whole format strange,strange that its best of three instead of best of five,strange how you can lose twice yet still be in the final and win depending on how the other players fair in the rest of the group,also just wondering if that were to happen to Rafa would winning the title lose some credibility knowing that even though he lost two matches,he still won the title?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

If Rafa were to surpass Roger and win 18 GS,and especially if he won more AO,USO,Wimbledons to even things out on other surfaces,if he doesnt win a WTF and falls short with weeks at number 1,just wondering who would be considered the greater player Roger or Rafa?


C!P! Says:

can you actually tell me that a tournament where you can lose twice ,still winning it with a 3-2 record can be considered tougher than a masters series event where you have to win 6 games (Miami ,Indian wells)without losing? and dont give me that top 8 stuff ,cause we all know how many times players skipped the tourney for various reasons ,which forced them to appeal to those not qualified , i remember one time they(ATP) got turned down by so many players at that moment ,the only one that answered the call was Stepanek ranked 27 in the ranking ,and he came straight from the beach, where he was in vacation ; face it YEC/WTF whatever you wanna call it ,isnt the same tournament as it was in the 80s or even 90s, now it’s more of marketing tool ,some players show up only for media day to get their financial bonus and then say good bye; and by the way some of us dont find excuses for Rafa ,we provide facts ,data, not our fault Fed fans can’t accept the reality and the trend!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Just wondering,actually im wondering alot lol,but this is an internet forum for people to speculate so what the hell?is Andre actually having a dig at Pete/and or Roger too saying this?meaning haha Pete there is now two players in history that are greater than you?or haha Roger as Rafa is greater than you now?


Perfect fan Says:

I seriously think that rafa having nil WTF titles is hurting rafa fans real bad…and they are hell bent on justifying it to be a dud of a tourney which actually is not….or else it never wud hav given 1500 points and the importance next only to the GSs.

Do you wanna say that the entire Tennis officials, the players, the legends who have already played this event……all of them are fools to approve it.

Comm’n guys! fed has nil record in so many titles like MC & Rome masters….but fed fans are not whinning on that.

Why can’t u accept that no tennis player is perfect enough to master all surfaces and all titles….had that been so, there wud never be a GOAT debate at all…coz such a player wud have been the ultimate GOAT….period.

The beauty of this game is that we have so many diversity in terms of surfaces and playing conditions….which makes it very challenging and exciting for the players to compete.

But i still believe that rafa is too good not to have won WTF once, which is really shocking….but i feel 2013 is a great chance for him to grab it….and believe it or not, i will be too happy for rafa if he does that.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Perfect Fan in my post i said i would really love Rafa to win a WTF,and im not trying to justify it because he hasnt,but i believe my question is quite pertinant does it loose some credibility if a player any player looses two matches yet makes the final and wins it?and this is not reaching as i dont do that.


Perfect fan Says:

@ Alison:

See IMO….WTF has its own share of PROS & CONS!

Cons is what u have jus mentioned….

Pros is that the field belongs to the best 8 players of the season (as against the GS & other tourneys where u don’t face tough competition untill the Qtrs)….so here the players are at their toes right from match 1….though the luxury of round robin format is there, but after losing one match the pressure to win is huge facing yet another top tier player….here there is no luxury of settling in by playing some dud matches with low ranked players….

now somebody wud say….that sometimes even low ranked players does crop up like stepanek in some year….but tell me, is that a mistake of the management if some top player gets too tired or injured by that time?

I feel that(unbiased by fed’s success here)….this is a special tourney as it is different from the usual format, the ambience is jus mesmerizing, all matches are pure business and no fooling around.

Common now….Rafa has 8 titles at Monte Carlo & 7 at Rome compared to Fed’s nil in them….but i have no complains at all….doesn’t mean that i don’t want that to happen, i certainly do….but its difficult for fed now to do that…..but certainly rafa has time on his side to complete the full set of the masters….however i feel, it will be Nole to do it first, maybe next year by winning cincy.


Thomas Says:

The stepanek incident was an anomaly. Normally, they send in 1 or 2 reserves (the 9th and 10th ranked players) just incase one of the top 8 gets injured. This happened a few years back when Murray got injured(bad back I believe) and had to pull out. Unless I am mistaken, Tipsarevic(who was number 9 at the time) replaced him.


skeezer Says:

@PF
Spot on.

@Patson
You mis understood. As a single tournament, the WTF rewards more points than a Masters. That is all.

Btw could care less what titles Fed doesn’t have(ie; Rome, whatever..), His career results and achievements is good enough for this fan :-).


hawkeye Says:

At least Rafaisthebest got the moniker accurate. Congrats for that. Not bad for a fed fan.

Indoor round robin tennis is little more than a hit and giggle unless the air conditioning fails.

Yowza.


Perfect fan Says:

@ skeezer & alison:

I was thinking very recently (now since this favoured surface debate cropped up)….
that we have 9 masters out of which 6 r on hard courts and 3 on clay…..why is that there is no masters tourney on Grass?

Now why is that we need 6 on HC….i have no probs with 3 on clay. Logically, all other tourneys apart from GSs are tuneups to prepare for the main event (not saying that masters are not imp)….but the point is, since Wimby being a GS, why is there no tuneup masters for it….puzzling, really!

I mean at least there could be 1 or 2 on grass….cutting down on the HCs. Now we have 2 GS on HC….so let there be 4 HC masters(2 each), 3 for FO….and possibly 1 or 2 for Wimby….wat say?

The present situation gives me a thought sometimes….is grass dying? Will there be no more grass and jus hard and clay courts? The history of Wimbledon (more than 100 years and the oldest one) does give me a glimmer of hope though….but have to say it, “there is nothing like watching wimby matches”.

But my question is still on….”whats the future of grass?”


hawkeye Says:

It’s not about what makes sense. It’s about what makes cents.

Hard court is cheaper to maintain.

Wimby grass will never change in our lifetime at least. If it was in the US, it would be artificial turf by now.

Simple maths.


holdserve Says:

skeezer the discussion is getting dumber because Fed fans have to resort to irrationality to maintain their idol’s claim to Goathood.
Use logic and your idol has no claim.
Look at the dumb argument that Rafa has been longest no. 2 and how can he be greater than Fed at no. 1?
Fed was not even no. 2 when he was below 22. If I remember correctly he was at some lowly rank when he was 19 or 20.
The reason a still forming Rafa was no. 2 and later a still forming Nole and Muzz were 3 and 4 was because 2003-2007 was a weak era with Fed having no rivals in his age group. Ranks 2,3, 4, 5 were up for grabs as there was no other great.
No wonder a Fed in his prime was no. 1 for so long.
I doubt skeezer that in tennis history you have a no. 1 who was regularly thrashed by a no. 2 who was pre-prime.
This no. 2 when he reached his prime bageled Fed on clay, thrashed him on his best surface (grass), seized the no. 1 ranking and humiliated the so-called GOAT at AO.
The media till recently were talking about Rafa as if he was Fed’s age group.
2013 has shut them up for good. At least now they realize Rafa and Fed are not the same age. But they have realized this because Fed is getting old. What the Fed fans pretend not to realize is that even in 2003-2007, Fed and Rafa weren’t in the same age group and while Fed was in his prime, Rafa was not.
Between 2008 and 2012, they were both in their prime, before 2008, it was advantage Fed and now it is advantage Rafa in terms of age.
Rafa has been hampered by his injuries. Otherwise he would have shut down the GOAT debate by now.


Rafaisthebest Says:

Here is a straightforward question. How many of you have played tennis? What level have you played at?
I cannot imagine anyone who plays tennis and cannot appreciate the Genius of Roger Federer. Rafael Nadal is the greatest competitor in our sport. However Federer along with Laver and Borg are the Perfect tennis players. Yes they have deficiencies but it is hard to see them be as bad as Nadal is indoors or Sampras on clay.

I have tremendous respect for both Nadal and Sampras but Federer, Laver and Borg [Andre you missed considering him] are the most perfect tennis players. When I advise my friends or their kids on their tennis, those are the 3 I refer to the most. Ofcourse I site Rafa’s mental strength too and how he never gives up and his training regime, but would I want them to play the knee-pounding game Nadal has embraced? I am sorry I know better.

Holdserve: To be a fan you don’t have to live in denial and badmouth some of the greatest tennis players to have walked the earth. Try it, it IS possible to be fair to both Rafa and Roger.


Perfect fan Says:

@ hawkeye: thanx for sharing.

@ rafaisthebest: u hit a jackpot buddy ;)


madmax Says:

I remember in 2009 FO when Agassi, after shaking fed’s hand when he won the final against soderling…said, ‘Man, you are the greatest of all time’. Then I remember ALL tennis pundits saying, IF fed wins the FO, he will be the Greatest of all time. He reaches that, and then he has to win davis cup? I mean, seriously. Oh My God. OF COURSE, IT IS ALL OPINION BASED BUT YOU HAVE TO LOOK AT THE FACTS IN ORDER TO CONSIDER THE ARGUMENT FAIRLY, SURELY?

Federer has more records than any of the big 4. He has the most achievements, the fact that he remained the best for all thOse years AND stayed healthy proves it. Federer won all those slams because Nadal mostly lost to other players and Federer shouldn’t be penalised for the fact that Nadal didn’t reach the latter end of the slams. Saying Nadal beat Federer more times, well Federer beat all those people Nadal lost to in slams… Answer this question: Has nadal stayed number 1 for 5 years straight ? Has he won 2 different grand slams 5 straight years in a row? Has nadal been in 23 straight semi final for grand slams? Has he been in 36 consecutive quarter final slam matches? The answer is no. Nadal has his own achievements and he is great for that but the fact remains even if he surpasses federer in slams and beats him more times than federer beat him, federer’s accomplishments altogether will outweigh anything Nadal could ever do. Not only that, you can’t say that he is a player who has a wide range of slam wins , roughly equal. The majority (9) of his slam wins come on clay! That is great in itself, but you can’t compare him with the versality of Federer’s wins in slams on a variety of courts.
And Nadal wining Davis cup as against Federer not winning. Seriously, HE has never won the Davis Cup. SPAIN has won the Davis Cup 4 times – Switzerland never. It is a team event and you need more than one player in your team to stand a chance. Hence Spain’s success with its incredible array of talent. 9 or 10 in the top 100!

Pulleeasse!

What Fed has given to this game is compared to the likes of Rod Laver and Bjorn Borg; this says volumes. He elevated the game to new levels and Nadal, Djokovic, Murray and others have all benefited from it. The reason he’s considered GOAT is how he’s been one of the best ambassadors of the game ever, apart from being voted fans favourite and players’ favourite, year in year out. I lose count. Is it 7 times now?
And What about Federer’s 6 ATP World Tour Final titles? ATP World Tour Final is contested amongst the top 8 players – so to win that, you need to beat the best. And Federer won that 6 times.

Nadal? never.

Federer is called greatest of all time because of his consistency. Over 4.8 consecutive years as World No. 1, 36 consecutive Grand Slam quarter finals, 23 semi finals , 10 consecutive finals, reaching finals of all Slams at least 5 times each, reaching many of the finals of 1000 Masters, 6 ATP World Tour Finals, tying Sampras for most Wimbledon titles, Djokovic for most Australian titles, Sampras and Conners for most US Open titles, and the list goes on.

Roger definitely is not the best on clay, but he came up second. This does not apply for Rafa on grass.

Simple fact: Roger is the second best clay.-player to Rafa, but not the second best grass player.

It’s obvious everyone will agree that without a doubt, Federer and Nadal are the two greatest tennis players of all time. But for Nadal to unequivocally claim the GOAT, he has to win more GS on HARD court. Like 3 more at the US Open, 3 more at the Australian Open and 3 more at Wimbledon. Then and only then can he be considered the GOAT. But to keep racking up GS on clay in my opinion is not going to pull it off.

Nadal has to also start winning the year end tournament where the best 8 tennis players IN THE WORLD compete. Nadal has never won this, while Federer has won it 6 times as I have said.

Roger Federer is the greatest with more shots than the others including Nadal who just pounds it back and forth relentlessly.

Answer me this honestly, how on this earth, is it possible Nadal gets more credit for winning a Davis Cup title (2009) where he never played until the Final and beat the mighty Jan Hajek there… in comparison to Federer winning a year end Championship where he went unbeaten and beat all of the other top 6 that week (2010).

The Nadal-Fed GOAT debate can be so unreal. Seriously, when Patrick and John Mcenroe were going on about Davis Cup titles, why do people seem to forget Nadal never won a year end championship? I know I keep repeating myself on this point, but Fed never gets this mention here? And surely the WTF is more important than Davis Cup?

They never mention this and please don’t say it doesn’t count? Else why laud it as THE fifth slam? Or that Federer won 6 of them against 6 different opponents at 3 different venues and went unbeaten in winning 5 of them (when only 2 players in the previous 30 years won that tournament going unbeaten).

Federer’s 10 GS finals in a row is an astonishing achievement – never really gets mentioned because somehow 36 straight QF and 23 straight SF seem to stick more in the mind for people and I can understand that.

Federer is the GOAT.


Teeg Says:

I am a Nadal fan, and while I do appreciate and admire Roger’s achievements, I would not say he is the “perfect” player. Tennis is so physical these days that if you can’t last 3-4 hours playing grinding, baseline tennis, you might as well not even show up. Serve-and-volley have just about seen its last days. Net rushing is a thing of the past. Whether we like it or not, the game is dominated today by aggressive baseliners. And IMO, the “perfect” player based on today’s standard is Novak Djokovic. That guy has no weakness to speak of. He played a level of tennis in 2011 that we’ve never seen before. That to me was perfection.


hawkeye Says:

Madmax says:

Answer this question: Has nadal stayed number 1 for 5 years straight ? Has he won 2 different grand slams 5 straight years in a row?

No, and neither has Federer.

Too funny.


hawkeye Says:

Madmax says:

Then I remember ALL tennis pundits saying, IF fed wins the FO, he will be the Greatest of all time

Federer didn’t have to win DC to be GOAT. Everyone can take different paths. Chillax dude.

IMO, he WAS the GOAT after FO 2009.

He just isn’t anymore.


Teeg Says:

@madmax

You can have your 23 straight SFs, 36 QFs…lol
I’ll keep Rafa’s NINE STRAIGHT years winning a Major.

So Roger is definitely 2nd on clay, but Rafa is not 2nd on grass? How do you figure. By my count, Roger has ONE French Open title to go along with 4 Rup. That’s 5 finals. Rafa, on the other hand won Wimbledon TWICE, to go along with his 2 rup. Thats also 5 finals. See, I just dont get your logic. They both made the same amount of finals on their least preferred surface, but while Rafa actually has more titles, he is not considered at least 2nd best, and Roget is? I just dont get it.


Teeg Says:

*3 rup …


hawkeye Says:

FedererWasTheGOAT says:

Have to admit, Nole is now a better clay court player than Fed ever was IMO.

Dude is scary good now and is pretty much a pick’em with Rafa on clay which sadly Federer never was.

No one is ignoring Fed’s outstanding achievements. He couldn’t have been GOAT without them. Definitely raised the bar and made Murray, Rafa and Nole better players.

One of the best of all time, seriously.


Teeg Says:

@hawkeye

Good post.


skeezer Says:

Since when is DC play a consideration for being a GOAT? LMAO…..

@Teeg,

I agree there is no perfect player either. But Rog is(was?) the closest thats ever been. I don’t don’t if you play but from a players point of view but Fed has the near perfect game. Technically speaking he has the largest variety of shotmaking skills, can play the most varied tactical game ( when he is not stubborn ) and in his heyday his movement was sublime. I don’t think your going to have any player on Tour today say that Fed is not that. To outlast someone and “grind” it out is a different argument. It does not equate to the “perfect” game. However, as you so astutely said, its the obvious style of play in todays game in order to win.


C!P! Says:

madmax’s post is a model for all Fed’s fans ,completely irrational; how come you guys exclude all sorts of things you dont like,now matter how important they are ,and the Rafa fans say everything matters? pretty much the same behaviour as the 2 players ,one keeps adding hardware ,and one is on the downslide having no idea what’s wrong with his game ,or why is he still playing; but its’good to have finally find out how many slams Rafa needs to win in order to be consider breater than Roger ,so 22 it’s the new mark ,lol set by MADmax; oh ,another Fed fan said above he thinks of him as the Most perfect ,only that? hmm ,not the greatestest perfect one? did you include his backhand in that perfect equation? his H2H against his main rival ,is also as close to perfect as one can get too
let’s recapitulate ,Rafa needs 22 slams with at least 4 at each ,in order to beat Roger’s 17 ,with only one French ,where he happens to have that big of an asterisk.Then he can be GOAT ! courtesy of madmax


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Madmax you actually answered the question to my post at 5.35am thanks.


hawkeye Says:

skeezer Says:
Since when is DC play a consideration for being a GOAT? LMAO…..

Since when isn’t it? LMAO…


rafaeli Says:

I don’t see how Federer has separated himself from the rest, of his 77 titles, a whopping 21 of them are 250s; 21 are M1000s, 12 are 500s, 6 WTF plus 17 slams.

Of Rafa’s 60 titles, only 6 are 250s, 14 are 500s and 26 M1000s with 1 Olympic Gold and 13 slams. Not to mention 4 DC on top of that.

There are 5 years age gap between them, so Rafa is the one separated from the rest. So far, Rafa has had a more successful career.


Teeg Says:

@rafaeli

C!P! noted in a post earlier that of the biggest titles (Grand slams, WTF, Masters, Olympics) Roger has 44 while Rafa has 40. When we look at it from this perspective, they are alot closer in achievements than some would have you believe.


Rafaisthebest Says:

Wimbledon is timeless. That is why it is the single most important tournament in the tennis world.

Patson: Agree with you WTF is not what kids dream of. If you give them a choice of winning WTF and Monte Carlo, I know which one they are choosing :)


rafaeli Says:

Teeg, also considering the age gap, I think Rafa is in the lead.


C!P! Says:

imagine how funny would have been this GOAT argument ,if we had 2 slams on clay instead of 2 slams on hard :)


hawkeye Says:

Rafaisthebest Says:
Wimbledon is timeless. That is why it is the single most important tournament in the tennis world.

Patson: Agree with you WTF is not what kids dream of. If you give them a choice of winning WTF and Monte Carlo, I know which one they are choosing :)

Spoken like a true Rafan LMAO…


rafaeli Says:

Someone seems to be impersonating rafaisthebest who spells his name all in lower case. We weren’t born yesterday,


Teeg Says:

@hawkeye & rafaeli

Yeah…I was getting the feeling that he was no Rafa fan


ID Fan Says:

As a Djokovic Fan, I appreciate fair Rafa posters like Rafa is the best and Alison.
Kudos to Skeezer and Ben for educating people about the important tournaments in tennis


anonymus Says:

Roger is GOAT…

Nadal is BOAT…

Nole is COAT…

Great—>Best—>Cockiest


C!P! Says:

all of us love Nadal fans ,love Roger too ,we love him so much that we want to see him play against Rafa as many times as possible :) , not the other way around!


Teeg Says:

@C!P!

Lol… So true.


SG1 Says:

I think madmax is correct in a couple of ways. Firstly, Roger still is the GOAT. Secondly, I do think it would help Rafa’s case for being the GOAT if he could put together next year, a year like he just had. It would show some sustained dominance. It’s reasonable to expect to GOAT to show some sustained dominance.


rafaeli Says:

@C!P!, we certainly don’t want Roger to retire because has unfinished business to beat him at least 30 times.


rafaeli Says:

@C!P!, we certainly don’t want Roger to retire because Rafa has unfinished business to beat him at least 30 times.


skeezer Says:

@SG1
Fair post there. Rafa can and may put together another year or 2 like this we all will be talking about him in another perspective. But reading all this crap ( like DC=GOAT ) is just biased crap only good for scrolling exercise for my finger.


hawkeye Says:

Radek Stepanek’s appearance at the 2008 WTF pretty much sums up the importance players put on that spectacle. From Wikipedia…

Although the ATP Rulebook states that the two players immediately ranked after the last qualifier at the Masters Cup should be selected as singles alternates, and be present at the event’s location,[71] only two players ranked in the Top 35 of the ATP Race, after Gilles Simon, accepted the invitation to come to Shanghai : 26th-ranked Radek Štěpánek of the Czech Republic, and 35th-ranked Nicolas Kiefer of Germany.[72] Among the twenty-four players who declined to come – because they needed to prepare for the Davis Cup final, for reasons of injury, or to preserve themselves for the next season – were James Blake, David Nalbandian, 2007 Tennis Masters Cup finalist David Ferrer, Stanislas Wawrinka, 2007 qualifier Fernando González, Fernando Verdasco, Gaël Monfils, Robin Söderling, Igor Andreev, Nicolás Almagro, Tomáš Berdych, Tommy Robredo, Marin Čilić, Mardy Fish, 2007 qualifier Richard Gasquet, Ivo Karlović, Philipp Kohlschreiber, Dmitry Tursunov, Marat Safin, Feliciano López, Paul-Henri Mathieu, Mikhail Youzhny, Rainer Schüttler and Mario Ančić.

Not quite as important as a major, masters, 500, 250 or even abu dhabi now, is it. LMAO.

WTF acronym seems quite accurate.

indoors,
off-season,
round robin,
fake surfrace,
eight players,
many injured/pullouts,

WTF???


hawkeye Says:

^^^ how does one highlight text on tennis-x?

please highlight: because they needed to prepare for the Davis Cup final

haha too funny LMAO.


James Says:

@Rafaisthebest, if Rafa is really the best, he’s better than Roger, no? If not, why your moniker rafaisthebest?

Roger is the greater player of the two as of NOW because he has 4 more slams than Rafa.

Roger a perfect tennis player? Really? I don’t think there’s a perfect tennis player that exists. We all have a weakness in our game. Even Federer does.

Fed fans and many others thought Roger was perfect until Rafa came and exposed his backhand and lack of mental strength.

One of the main reasons why Rafa is always confident against Roger imo is because he knows Roger would eventually give up when the going gets tough. Whoever has pushed Roger hard have beaten him more times than not.

I for one don’t find Roger’s mental strength GOAT worthy. You know it’s something when a tennis great like Wilander says Roger has “no balls” when facing Nadal. This imo is the main reason why Roger’s become Rafa’s whipping boy esp in majors.

Is Rafa perfect? Hell no! He isn’t even the most talented player I’ve seen. He doesn’t have the biggest serve nor the best backhand. But his game doesn’t have a big weakness like Roger’s does. He’s also the most determined player I’ve seen who keeps on trying to improve his game to be the best.

Rafa is also one of the best when it comes to exploiting the chink in opponent’s armor. No wonder Rafa has the best career winning % of all time. He’s a superior player to not only Federer but also the entire ATP top 100. Only the great Davy is an exception.

I personally don’t rate the WTF that high as I’m yet to hear a tennis great/expert say it’s a must for GOAThood. Only the fans rate it almost as high as slams. But if it’s really that important, then Rafa needs to win it at least once.

Rafa needs to win a few more slams to be considered greater than Roger, and surpass his slam count to be the GOAT, if there is such a thing. If Rafa really is that good, he will do it. If not, not my problem. Not something I can do much about.

Gotta accept it the way it is.

Oh and winning a title >>> multiple finals!


madmax Says:

hawkeye Says:
FedererWasTheGOAT says:

Have to admit, Nole is now a better clay court player than Fed ever was IMO.

Dude is scary good now and is pretty much a pick’em with Rafa on clay which sadly Federer never was.

No one is ignoring Fed’s outstanding achievements. He couldn’t have been GOAT without them. Definitely raised the bar and made Murray, Rafa and Nole better players.

One of the best of all time, seriously.

September 26th, 2013 at 11:43 am

Too funny Hawkeye,

So Fed wins 1 F0 and reaches 5 finals and you think that novak is a better clay court player?

Too funny Hawkeye.


madmax Says:

hawkeye Says:
Madmax says:

Answer this question: Has nadal stayed number 1 for 5 years straight ? Has he won 2 different grand slams 5 straight years in a row?

No, and neither has Federer.

Too funny.

September 26th, 2013 at 11:31 am

Too funny Hawkeye!

Apologies! I meant THREE GRAND SLAMS THREE YEARS ON THE TROT. MY BAD!


Teeg Says:

@madmax

Just as funny as you claiming that Rafa has not been the 2nd best grass court player despite the fact he’s reached 5 finals and won Wimbledon twice.

Yeah, too funny.


madmax Says:

C!P! Says:
madmax’s post is a model for all Fed’s fans ,completely irrational; how come you guys exclude all sorts of things you dont like,now matter how important they are ,and the Rafa fans say everything matters? pretty much the same behaviour as the 2 players ,one keeps adding hardware ,and one is on the downslide having no idea what’s wrong with his game ,or why is he still playing; but its’good to have finally find out how many slams Rafa needs to win in order to be consider breater than Roger ,so 22 it’s the new mark ,lol set by MADmax; oh ,another Fed fan said above he thinks of him as the Most perfect ,only that? hmm ,not the greatestest perfect one? did you include his backhand in that perfect equation? his H2H against his main rival ,is also as close to perfect as one can get too
let’s recapitulate ,Rafa needs 22 slams with at least 4 at each ,in order to beat Roger’s 17 ,with only one French ,where he happens to have that big of an asterisk.Then he can be GOAT ! courtesy of madmax

September 26th, 2013 at 11:58 am

CIP! Too funny! “and the Rafa fans say everything matters?”

Really?

Tell you what, why is it that people like you never recognise the WTF, 6 titles for Fed? Let me guess now. Oh, yeah. Because Rafa hasn’t won one. May be that is the reason.

Talk about irrational thinking. let’s recapitulate shall we?


Teeg Says:

@madmax

Madmax says:

Answer this question: Has nadal stayed number 1 for 5 years straight ? Has he won 2 different grand slams 5 straight years in a row?

No, and neither has Federer.

Too funny.

September 26th, 2013 at 11:31 am

Too funny Hawkeye!

Apologies! I meant THREE GRAND SLAMS THREE YEARS ON THE TROT. MY BAD!

If “ON THE TROT” you mean non consecutive years, then thats true. Because he did it in 04, 06-07. Still, very impressive.


hawkeye Says:

Teeg, you beat me to it.

From the ATP rulebook:

The commitment for the commitment player is, the singles event of all ATP World Tour
Masters 1000 tournaments for which he is accepted, the Barclays ATP World Tour Finals

So qualified players HAVE to play WTF. All those in 2008 who didn’t have to play had better things to do such as prepare for DC.

WTF is more like say… the NFL Pro Bowl. Lots of money, fanfare, sponsors and schmoozing but no one takes it that seriously, no?


C!P! Says:

madmax are you blind ,stupid ,ignorant ,or all these combined ? cause you continue to bring arguments against yourself ; look above mate ,i included WTF in the important tournament category along with the slams ,the masters and Olympics, and i said that WE rafa fans include everything ,you Roger fans disconsider important elements; what i said is that WTF in my opinion is below Olympics or even a masters series event ,because one can lose there and STILL be in the tournament!


madmax Says:

Hawkeye and CIP!

Everyone knows head-to-head records are not necessarily the best way to judge players. You just choose to latch on to this because it adds to your ever growing ego when it comes to nadal. Look at the facts:

Jimmy Connors has a very uneven losing record against all three of his big rivals, Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe and Ivan Lendl, but no one doubts his Hall of Fame credentials, yet you want to doubt Federer’s because you beat the drum for rafa, but forget the basic facts that his wins are heavily in favour of clay court triumphs.

But let’s forget that “little piece” of information shall we? Or does the h2h with Davydenko not matter either? No. Let’s forget that too, shall we?

Too funny guys. Too funny.


C!P! Says:

you dont even read what you are writing , then i guess whe shouldnt be surprised you dont read (carefully) what others write; we all make mistakes ,but you are simply embarassing yourself


rafaeli Says:

The WTF is a glorified exho.


rafaeli Says:

So why not discount indoors for Fed as it’s the only arena where he dominates Rafa. Rafa even dominates Roger on outdoor h/c!!!!!!!!!!1


C!P! Says:

lol.ridiculous once again ,who doubted Connors’s credentials ,was this even in discussion? lol ; Davy does not count because he is not a candidate for the GOAT status ! we compare Rafa to Roger here ,not Rafa with Davy; look we can only be blamed for what we say ,not for what you understand ,unfortunately too little


Tennis for Life Says:

Hawkeye
Great post at 1:14pm


Tennis for Life Says:

Hawkeye
Great post at 1:14pm


James Says:

@madmax, Rafa is the 2nd best grass court player of his era, 3rd best HC player and by far greatest ever on clay.

Only Federer has more Wimbledons than Nadal among active players, no?


rafaeli Says:

There is a massive difference in a 5-6 h2h between Rafa and Davy and 21-15 between Rafa and Roger. By the end of 2010 Rafa will be on his way to beating Roger 30 times.


C!P! Says:

how many slams does Rafa have on his least prefered surface? 3 (defeating Fed once and Djoko twice in those finals); how many does Roger ? 1 (defeating Soderling)


Teeg Says:

@rafaeli

Its actually 21-10 Rafa vs Roger. The 22-15 is vs Nole.

But 21-10 is even worse. Lol


hawkeye Says:

madmax Says:
Hawkeye and CIP!

Everyone knows head-to-head records are not necessarily the best way to judge players.

I agree. If you read my posts, you should know that. Just one of many factors.


James Says:

@rafaeli, 21-15??? Roger has won only 10 times out of 31 matches vs Rafa. It’s 21-10


AD Tennis Says:

You can really tell people who actually play tennis and have knowledge about the history of the game from people who do not.

rafaisthebest, alison, kimberly, skeezer, margot, ben, sg1 – these are the posters who have played tennis or spent a good amount of time reading and watching tennis.

madmax, you have wonderful points to make but you can present them better.

The rest, well, they really need to pull their socks and do some more reading on tennis.

Weeks at no.1 and YEC are more important than masters titles or DC. This is a fairly established metric in the tennis world. Remember Lendl had 22 Masters abd 8 slams for a total off 30 big titles. Sampras with 11 masters and 14 slams still trumps him in the GOAT debate.

What it tells us is that you can be a GOAT even if you have a bad record at French Open. If you donot win Wimbledon or you are inferior on Grass, you will pay a heavy price in the GOAT debate. Ask Lendl, Wilander.

So Roger with 7 wimbledons to 2 from Rafa will be at an advantage even Rafa wins 10 French Open to 1 French Open from Roger.

The other Big Slam USO, even there Roger has a 5-2 lead.

Do Rafa fans have anything substantial in this debate other than the H2H? Even there Lendl had a 24-14 H2H on Connors, but very few consider Lendl greater than Connors. If you are 5 years younger than another player you will most probably end up with a winning H2H unless the younger player is not really a good player. When all is said and done, Murray, Novak, will also join with a winning H2H over Federer. It is a credit to Roger that he beat two of those young guys back to back at the greatest tennis tournament in the world, even after he turned 30. Something Rafa, we can safely agree will not do. He cannot even beat Darcis/Rosol on grass, even when he is at his prime.


rafaeli Says:

What’s Roger’s longest winning streak on clay? His least favourite surface. Rafa has a 22-0 winning streak on h/c, his least favourite surface.


rafaeli Says:

James Says:

@rafaeli, 21-15??? Roger has won only 10 times out of 31 matches vs Rafa. It’s 21-10

Sorry, a typo.


popsicle Says:

31-10 is an incredible advantage, 2-1.


C!P! Says:

@AD Tennis
and how did you come up with that conclusion ? have you seen all of those play? from what they wrote ,and what you write ,once can draw the exact opposite conclusion
for your info ,this is NOT a tennis match this is were we make comments about the game ,and can or may bring arguments ,more or less valid ;feel free to include this sentence of yours in the ridiculous category (So Roger with 7 wimbledons to 2 from Rafa will be at an advantage even Rafa wins 10 French Open to 1 French Open from Roger.) so when you the tennis guy plays a match against somebody ,if it is on clay ,and you beat your opponent will feel inferior to that guy if he beats you on grass ,no? makes sense to you and only you i guess; you must be a Youzhny fan also ,be careful too many racquets broken to your head have severe repercussions


James Says:

LOL @AD Tennis, so now you can tell who’s played tennis and who hasn’t just by reading their posts on the internet? :D

I actually do play tennis…but whatever.


C!P! Says:

out of curiosity AD ,what is your NTRP level?


AD Tennis Says:

James: What is your NTRP level? Mine is a 6. I am a coach of a NCAA tennis team.

Yes, I can tell people who PLAY tennis from people who play tennis. There is a difference when your heart soul and mind wants tennis and more tennis, you PLAY tennis.

So tell me, do you play tennis or PLAY tennis? Your comments reflect a fundamental lack of knowledge in tennis history. If you are interested I can suggest a few books and articles that I suggest to my students.


C!P! Says:

i love and respect Roger ,for what he is and has done for the game, i hope he doesnt read this blog to see posters like AD and madmax ,he will feel ashamed for sure;
we go back and forth here comparing the greatness of the 2 stars, everyone tries to emphasize what one has achieved in support of his favorite ,but to come up with stuff like Rafa needs 22 slams to be better than 17 ,or Wimbledon counts much more than Roland garros ,is simply outrageous ,you dont get tennis ,you are just obsessed with Federer


C!P! Says:

you a tennis coach ?ha ha ha ,IF that is true ,which i doubt seriously ,then we have one more clue why US tennis experiences such a rough period


AD Tennis Says:

Ofcourse C!P!

We should all accept those wonderful claims by rafa fans

1) Masters titles are more important than slams

2) H2H is more important than weeks at no.1

3) Monte Carlo is a bigger tournament than WTF

4) Davis Cup is also more important than WTF [never mind Roger plays all 3 matches for his country and Rafa rarely bothers to turn up outside europe and Spain win Davis cup even without Rafa, so what exactly is Rafa doing for Spain in Davis cup?]

anything else I’ve forgotten – skeezer, Ben, Madmax or any non-rafa-blinded tennis fans?


C!P! Says:

but if in your case NCAA means No Clue About Anything ,then i might agree


C!P! Says:

who said all of what you said now? have you seen me say such things? you invent arguments no one mentioned and bring this as proof?


skeezer Says:

@AD
Glad u posted. Yes, if your a player, u can tell for the most part who plays tennis and is a fan of the game and who doesn’t play but is still a fan.
Does it matter? After all, a fan is a fan, all is welcome, no?
The big Butt comes when someone tries to sound all authoritarian about the game, but only watches tennis or “googles” information because they have an infatuation that goes beyond the game. Its all about the love of a man. Thats when things get weird.


AD Tennis Says:

US tennis experiences a rough time because Americans have much better and lucrative sports to play. Talk to me when Spain or any other tennis-successful nation can match US in the Olympics medal tally.

I am sure everyone reading our posts knows who the one without clue here is.

Hint: the one who thinks lendl is greater than sampras because he won 22 Masters titles and Sampras only cared to win 11.


hawkeye Says:

Where to begin, lol…

AD Tennis Says:
YEC are more important than masters titles or DC.

RogersHairIsTheBest Says:
All those professional players who declined WTF in 2008 to rest for DC were not aware. Maybe they don’t play tennis.

AD Tennis Says:
Do Rafa fans have anything substantial in this debate other than the H2H?

RogersHairIsTheBest Says:
If you read my posts, you should know that’s not the case. Just one of many factors.

AD Tennis Says:
Even there Lendl had a 24-14 H2H on Connors, but very few consider Lendl greater than Connors.

RogersHairIsTheBest Says:
Simply subjective and not true. Americans maybe.

AD Tennis Says:
If you are 5 years younger than another player you will most probably end up with a winning H2H unless the younger player is not really a good player.

RogersHairIsTheBest Says:
Why? Shouldn’t Federer have built up a positive h2h from 2006-09 when Rafa was 19-23 and Fed was in his prime at 25-28??? Instead, Rafa was already 13-7 including slam wins on ALL surfaces, no?

Same goes for Muzza. Why didn’t Fed take advantage when Muzza was younger?

Same old federazzi propaganda, no?


James Says:

You a tennis coach, AD? I’m impressed! So how old are you? It’s a pity we can’t sort out this on a tennis court;)

So what part of my comment did you find amusing? Are you gonna now claim that Andre Agassi doesn’t play tennis or doesn’t know much about it because he says Rafa has an argument to be the best ever?


C!P! Says:

what?you dont make any sense mate ,who won 22 masters? Lendl hasnt won any masters titles mate
well i guess it’s my fault too ,since i’m arguing with someone that has no idea what he is talking about!


Teeg Says:

No one in their right mind would claim a Masters 1000 title is bigger than a slam. That is just ridiculous.

And the only reason the h2h is such a talking point today is because no other Goat contender has ever been so utterly dominated by their main rival as Roger is. It is a legitimate argument.

Also, who said Monte Carlo is bigger than WTF?

And Rafa barely turns up for Davis Cup? You sure you know as much about tennis as you claim? Rafa was apart of Spain’s winning team in 04, 08-09, & 2011. He didn’t play the final in 2008 because of injury, but he was integral in the SF. Really, how could you not know this.

You seem to be making things up at this point.


AD Tennis Says:

“Its all about the love of a man. ”

Well said. I will be very happy if Rafa achieves GOAThood by actually earning the laurels. He is in the final lap of his career [knees might go anytime] and his fans are desperate to change goalposts so they can anoint him GOAT.

Fortunately Rafa himself is well-grounded. He knows he has spent his entire career in the shadow of Federer. Federer was under Sampras’ shadow till 2009 and then he achieved GOAThood. There is a reason Rafa is humble. He has always been 2nd in the pecking order. Even when he was no.1, Federer enjoyed greater fan and peer support – which is finally what matters.

It is very unlikely Rafa will overtake Laver as GOAT, forget Federer. As rafaisthebest mentioned, Federer, Laver, Borg are the perfect tennis players. I will add Sampras and Djokovic there too. Rafa is NOT the perfect tennis player. He is an excellent athlete and a great tennis player but he does not cross the fine-line from great to genius!


C!P! Says:

about shadows AD :) who lost in the shadows of a Wimby 2008 final ? who cried in shadow of Rafa’s arm at the end of Australian Open 2009?


James Says:

Those of you who claim to be good tennis players, it would be fun to actually see how good you really are :D

and btw Roger is NOT the perfect tennis player. Rafa has beaten the perfection outta him 21 times out of 31 matches played between them!


rafaeli Says:

@AD 3.05 PM, ALL OF THIS IN YOUR OPINION.

You sound so scared that Rafa is leaving Roger in the shadows that you now resort to not letting the facts get in your way.


hawkeye Says:

Where to begin, lol (Part II)…

AD Tennis Says:
1) Masters titles are more important than slams
2) H2H is more important than weeks at no.1
3) Monte Carlo is a bigger tournament than WTF
4) Davis Cup is also more important than WTF

RogersHairIsTheBest Says:
1) Ummmm, no.
2) Ummmm, no.
3) Well then all of those players who skipped WTF and played MC must be Rafans, LMAO.
4) See 3).

Wowowowow, so Fed has been more committed to DC than Nadal????? I guess only TENNIS players think so as defined by AD Tennis.

Hilarious!!!


Teeg Says:

If I were Rafa, I wouldnt mind living in Roger’s shadow if I knew I whooped his a%& 2/3 of the times we played.


Teeg Says:

@James

Couldn’t have said it better.


AD Tennis Says:

Teeg:

Those are claims rafa fans have made. please read their posts.

James: Tell me where you want to play and we can arrange something.

hawkeye: flawed reasoning. Murray/djokovic not taking advantage of the 5year age difference means Rafa is better than them, it does not prove Rafa is better than Roger.

Federer was 3-0 against Agassi before Wimbledon 2003. After that Agassi did not win a match. In the last 7 matches, Agassi won 1 or 2 sets out of 17 sets or so. Age does that. Till 2007, Rafa was 8-6 on Roger. After that, when even players like Fish and Gonzalez started beating Roger, that is when Rafa built up a 13-4 lead, where simlar to Lendl winning 17 straight against Connors in their final 17 matches!


C!P! Says:

i’m definitely glad to see that Rafa fans outnumber Fed fans here on tennis-x, i didnt think it was possible ,but apparently one more positive stat for Fed is about to be overshadowed by Rafa:)


John Says:

My Goodness, every time AD Tennis makes a Good comment the only reply he gets is a monkey with a Grenade; very disappointing.


James Says:

AD, I first need to know how old you are. If you’re 35+ it would be unfair.

Btw, Roger was once asked who was better, him or Rafa. He said we’ll never know.

What we know is that Fed is 5 years older and has 4 slams more than Nadal. And we respect him for his massive achievements and what he’s contributed to tennis. But still he’s Rafa’s pigeon since 2008. Not perfect.


hawkeye Says:

AD Tennis Says:

hawkeye: flawed reasoning. Murray/djokovic not taking advantage of the 5year age difference means Rafa is better than them, it does not prove Rafa is better than Roger.

Flawed reading. No where did I say that meant Rafa was better than Fed (even though I think he is for different reasons which I’ve already explained many times).

False reasoning: Agassi is 11 years older than Federer!!! So the period that Fed was in his prime and Agassi was old was muuuch greater than when Agassi was in his prime and Fed wasn’t LMAO.

Not the case with Muzza and Rafa.

This is too easy.


Teeg Says:

I dont see anywhere anyone saying that Masters are bigger than Majors. I see someone suggesting that Olympics are more important (to which I disagree) than WTF.

Davis cup is thrown in there to add to the argument. Just like weeks at no.1, titles, slams, masters titles – its just another measurement to go by. If you dont think so, take that up with McEnroe, Agassi, Becker and other experts who seem to think that it does.


AD Tennis Says:

Better to lose to Rafa than lose 7 times in a row to your rival who is the same generation as you. Cannot think of another 10+ slam winner who was as humiliated as Rafa was in 2011.

7 matches – 3 slams, 4 masters

3 surfaces – 2 on clay, 4 on hardcourts 1 on grass.

Let us also not forget Davydenko who holds a 6-5 H2H.

Remember Hewitt – that weak era player still has a winning H2H outside clay. Outside clay, Rafa is alright. Clay has always been the dominion of lesser players wilander, courier, bruguera, muster with a couple of exceptions [Borg and Federer]. Grass and hardcourts is where tennis’ champions thrive – Borg, Laver, Sampras, Federer on grass. Sampras, Agassi, Federer, Safin,Connors, Lendl and Djokovic on hardcourts.


C!P! Says:

what Good comment? that Lendl won 22 masters titles? that Wimbledon is more valuable than Roland Garros?that 10 < 7? monkeys do not posess high intelligence ,so thats why they might confuse bad things with good things !


rafaeli Says:

Rafa beat Roger on Roger’s favourite surface nearly a year after not playing on the surface in straight sets at IW. How perfect is Roger’s game?


Teeg Says:

@AD Tennis

Yeah getting beat 7 times in a row to one of your main rivals is indeed a harsh blow.

But what does Rafa do, he goes right back to work and beats him 6/7 of their next meetings. Its all good though, the h2h is still overwhelmingly positive in Rafa’s favour (22-15). I’m sure Rafa is completely fine with his winning record against his 3 biggest rivals especially his 21-10 over the so-called GOAT.


C!P! Says:

indeed Teeg ,i said that in my opinion Olympic Gold is more important and difficult to obtain than WTF ,and i explained why ,for the simple fact that one can win WTF with a 3-2 record in the tournament,and in Olympics you need 6 wins and a 5 set final; in which other tournament you may still progress after you lost once or twice?


rafaeli Says:

AD, Rafa still owns Djokovic, 22-15.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Agree with much of AD Tennis post@3.25 pm,however if the FO is regarded as so inferior/the poor mans slam,why was Roger so delighted to win it,and why is Novak so hell bent on winning it now?come to think of it whats the point in them even bothering to try?(sigh).


hawkeye Says:

Nole had the best single year in tennis history in 2011. He was simply outstanding.

The only reason Rafa lost to him more than anyone else that year is that he was the only one consistent enough to get that far. Fed was 1-4.

Difference is Rafa found solutions and adapted and is 6-1 since. Another reason for his GOAT status. Something Roger couldn’t do against Rafa. Graceful dancing (only valued by TENNIS players) didn’t cut it.

And there in lies the true pain, no?


Teeg Says:

@C!P!

I understand your reasoning. I just feel that the WTF have always been an important tennis event. The Olympics, while being a big deal today, was not always a big tennis event. It only recently gained importance since 1988 when Graf won it, bringing attention to the”golden slam”. Before that, it was hardly that important. That’s how I see it. Today though, it is one of the most important for sure.


Teeg Says:

@hawkeye

If not for Novak in 2011, this wouldnt even be up for discussion. That’s how I see it.


C!P! Says:

thats why i placed WTF and Olympics in the same category ,important ones, just that i give a higher degree of difficulty for the Olympics; cause you can afford a BAD day in the WTF ,NOT in the Olympics


AD Tennis Says:

Hippy Chic:

Since you are one of the knowledgeable Rafa fans, I will answer your question.

Do yo really believe Sampras, Becker, Mcenroe, Laver, Federer, Agassi, Djokovic and other tennis players plan their schedule around FO? The answer is no.

There was a poll/research done a few years back based on player opinion and fan reach and guess which slam came top of the heap? Comfortably, if I may add.

As I said. Rafa a is a great athlete, but to quote another Rafa fan who knows their tennis, rafaisthebest : Laver, Borg, Federer are perfect.

Please don’t be offended by my responses to some ill-mannered rafa fans. Atleast I did not say Djokovic kicked Rafa’s behind and the likes. I hope you realise how frustrated your rafa fans from the erst-while tennis site that shut down are.[because the rafa fans ganged up and drove away other tennis fans].


Teeg Says:

We can agree to disagree, but I think its the slams, the tour finals, then the Olympics, then the Masters. In that order. But that’s just me.


C!P! Says:

AD do you even know the meaning of the word PERFECT ? have you ever heard of the saying : only idiots are sure on themselves ,smart people have always doubts? just think about it! from what i’ve seen in this thread at least , between rafa fans and fed fans ,means straight sets win for Rafa( tennis knowledge, ,reason)


Teeg Says:

So he’s a great “athlete”. Why can’t it be he is a great tennis player. As if he doesn’t have the skills or talent and relies completely on his physicality or his athleticism. Just another effort to diminish his accomplishments. Rafa is a great tennis player and anyone who says otherwise is deranged.


holdserve Says:

Dear Ad tennis, Rafaisthebest is not a Rafa fan. He is a Fed fan!


holdserve Says:

Also AD tennis, while tennis x hippy chic is knowledgeable about tennis how do you expect her to know what the greats of the past would have preferred? You are simply trying to make her admit she doesn’t consider FO important. But she is smart and will not fall into your trap. Elsewhere she has said Fed and Djoko were frantic to win the FO. And that speaks of the importance of this slam.


hawkeye Says:

AD Tennis Says:

Do yo really believe Sampras, Becker, Mcenroe, Laver, Federer, Agassi, Djokovic and other tennis players plan their schedule around FO? The answer is no.

Novak Djokovic Says:
“Well, I’m more motivated to win this trophy than the fact that you just brought,” Djokovic told a journalist today. “I know that if I win this tournament it’s going to be the part of the history, so I would be very honored to be part of that small, small group of players that manage to win all four Grand Slams.

But, you know, there is so much to this tournament. It means a lot. As I was saying before, and I will say it again, you know, it is the No. 1 priority of my season and I will go for it. If I don’t make it this time it’s not the end of the world. I will keep on working hard and trying to make it another year. As I said, I will give my best to go all the way.”

Djokovic also knows that his recent win over Nadal in Monte Carlo could prove the difference should they meet in the semifinals.

“Well, it definitely gave me the confidence boost, you know, before Madrid and Rome and also this tournament,” he said. “Winning against Nadal on clay is not something that happens every day, you know. It’s a big challenge. I managed to play one of the best matches on the clay courts ever in my career, and that’s an important it’s an important fact prior to Roland Garros. That’s it. That’s all I can say.”

Nole stated the French Open as his top priority this year but I guess he didn’t prepare for it if you say so.

Hilarious!


C!P! Says:

AD you come up with Roland Garros is less important than Wimby ,10 < 7 slams ,Lendl won how many masters? lol ,and you want people to take you seriously?
how funny is this :"Do yo really believe Sampras, Becker, Mcenroe, Laver, Federer, Agassi, Djokovic and other tennis players plan their schedule around FO? The answer is no' ; you just provided the biggest proof you have absolutely no idea of tennis and no logic at all; mate all those you mentioned ALL of them did plan their schedule for the French ,how laughable for you to say otherwise


holdserve Says:

Incidentally now media guys are admitting Fed is or at least was a great athlete. His skills are the same but age has reduced his athletic ability.
Greatness in tennis requires both extraordinary skill and athletic ability.
Earlier fFed was considered to be non athletic, no muscles, no practice, playing and winning by sheer magic.
Rafa was just a great athlete.
Now the media is recognizing that Rafa has extraordinary skills and that Fed owed his success asmuch to his athletic ability as to his skill.
As a matter of fact all 4 are capable of magic in their shotmaking.


Teeg Says:

@hawkeye

Shows how much they know. The FO was Djokovic’s top priority this year and will continue to be his top priority until he wins it.


C!P! Says:

please AD ,enough with this stupid nonsense of yours ,enough is enough, i mean it’s one thing to contradict with others ,but to be the one bringing the best arguments against yourself is absolutely mind-boggling


Teeg Says:

@Holdserve

Spot on.


holdserve Says:

If Ad tennis can believe rafaisthebest is a Rafa fan, he can believe anything including that great players do not prepare or plan for French Open.


SG1 Says:

I guess I’m in the minority. I think Lendl was greater than Connors. I hated Lendl back in the ’80′s and was a big Connors fan. This being said, I’ve always thought Lendl’s game was better technically. Connors got the most out of his talent and may have been the smarter player who ever lived (Wilander’s right up there too). I just think of Lendl obliterating McEnroe time after time from 85′ onward. The big hitting attackers like Becker, Edberg and Sampras eventually caught up to Lendl but for a time, he was a really imposing figure on a tennis court.


SG1 Says:

The father of the modern power game and the first to bring high end fitness into the equation. His legacy will far outlast Connors’.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

AD Tennis its no problem,i wasnt actually offended,i just thought it was/is unfair that the FO is considered a lesser GS,and my post was an overall generalisation about the FO as a whole,not really from a Rafa fan perspective,Roger has one and im sure he would love another to have a second GS,and Novak wants one to complete the set,Pete doesnt have one so thats a hole in his otherwise very impressive resume.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Holdserve as i said above in my post to AD Tennis it was just an overall generalisation about the FO as a whole,rather than been a Rafa fan having a rant,and not in any way trying to score points against the Fed fans on this forum.


AD Tennis Says:

SG1:

I agree with you on Lendl, but unfortunately his legacy is about something he did NOT win. I am sure every tennis fan is aware of it.

Connors is a much more talented player than Lendl. He is the GOAT of returners, ahead of Djokovic, Hewitt, Murray and Federer. [Agassi was too risky on the return. Federer's return was the single biggest reason why Andy Roddick remained a single-slam champion]

Hippy Chic:

Do not be bullied into submission by the rafa-kool-aid drinkers as Skeezer very aptly calls them. Sampras/Federer/Djokovic will covet 1 FO title to prove that they can win on clay. However Nole and Rafa’s most favorite slam is Wimbledon. Federer and Murray, you need not even ask.

We all know the truth – Wimbledon is THE tournament in tennis and Wimbledon Champs are the real people’s champions, except if you are wearing rafa-tinted glasses or you are from Spain and feel patriotically obliged to support the ball-retreiving and uber-defensive spanish style.

I would take Safin and his shot-making game over some grinder like Bruguera or Alberto costa or the likes, for example!


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

AD Tennis no im not trying to seek any approval,i actually meant what i said,which was an overall generalisation,actually thinking back to what Ben said some days ago,as happy as i was when Rafa won the FO and i always am,the sweeter thing as a fan for me was the titles he won off clay especially the USO which is evening out his legacy,1 GS away from clay has done wonders for his resume,having multiple slams now on all surfaces must surely make him a complete player,not the one dimensional CC player anymore,and if it doesnt now then nothing ever will surely?


Teeg Says:

AD Tennis: “Wimbledon Champs are the real people’s champions”. What on God’s green earth does this even mean?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Obviously im not saying Rafa is more talented,greater,or a more complete player than Roger,just saying i think hes done enough to be regarded as a complete player now.


Teeg Says:

@Tennis X Happy Chic:

He’s done more than enough. He has 3 hc slams, 2 gc slams,
8 hc Masters, he’s won the Olympics (of all tournaments) on hc – his supposed worst surface. If all this isn’t enough to be regarded as well-rounded, then surely what is?


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Rafa has won Wimbledon twice and altogether been in 5 finals,so hes no slouch on grass either,Roger is the only active player thats been in more finals and won more titles.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Sorry evaning out not evening out duh.


hawkeye Says:

SG1 yes you, me and a majority of others are in the minority that think Lendl was better than Connors.

Connors was my favourite before Sampras but Lendl was a better player. He played safe, higher margin tennis but it was very successful. Speaking of, he never won a French.

Both Sampras and Connors skipped many more Aussie Opens than French Opens. So much for the “Coach’s” theory regarding the French Open, no?

Brilliant! :)


hawkeye Says:

^^^Connors that is who never won the French.

Too busy laughing.


James Says:

So according to some Fed fans, the French Open is a poor man’s slam. Interesting! Keep ‘em coming.


madmax Says:

CIP

You are the one who is embarrassing themselves with your distorted version of ‘Rafutopia!’

Don’t like the facts? Deal with it. H2H is not the be all and end all, like I mentioned above.

Perfect fan Says:
1. slams – fed has 17 to rafa’s 14….adv. fed
2. wtf – fed has 6 to rafa’s nil….adv. fed
3. Olympics singles- fed has silver to rafa’s gold….adv. nadal
4. Masters – fed’s 21 to rafa’s 26….adv nadal
5. h2h – fed’s 10 to rafa’s 21….adv nadal
6. no.1 ranking record….adv fed
7. dominance(in terms of 3 or more slams per season)- fed’s 3 to rafa’s 1….adv fed

overall- fed’s 4 to rafa’s 3….which pretty much sums it “who’s better” now.

but 2 years from now….”finger-crossed.”

September 25th, 2013 at 12:46 pm

Perfect fan. Interesting analysis.


Skeezer Says:

@madmax
“Rafutopia”
Lol, so classic. So appropriate for this thread…..


metan Says:

James @ 7.39pm. Cool .
Roger in his hey day couldn’t do hat trick Montreal-Cincinnati-USopen. And he is the GOAT.LOL!!!


SG1 Says:

I definitely agree that Wimbledon’s prestige does appear to outshine the other slams. However, appearances can be deceiving in realistic terms. The grass season is damned short and essentially unimportant other than Wimbledon itself. The lack of grass tournaments in the ATP sort of marginalizes the importance of grass.

Red clay is the more ubiquitous surface in terms of the number of tournaments available for the pros to play in. This would seem to counter balance a lot of Wimbledon’s prestige.

I wouldn’t want to get into which slams are more important than the others. In terms of prestige, the AO is probably right at the bottom of the list. Are we going to say the Roger’s 17 slams aren’t really 17 because he’s won 4 AO’s? A slam win is a slam win and let’s leave it at that.


SG1 Says:

Hawkeye,

I don’t think that when people look at Lendl, the first thing that comes to mind is “Hah, that guy never won Wimbledon.” I think most knowledgeable tennis fans recognize that this guy may have had the best forehand around, was incredibly well conditioned and shared an era with some of the all time greats (Borg, Connors, McEnroe, Wilander, Becker, Edberg and Sampras). Not easy to rack up the slam wins with all those guys in the way all the time.

Lendl has more than solidified himself among the best ever (definitely in my top 10), with or without a Wimbledon title.


SG1 Says:

If anyone wants to ordain Wimbledon as the only slam worth winning, I’ll go for it. My favorite player was Pete Sampras and I have never seen anyone play better at Wimbledon than him and that includes Federer. Finally, a reason for Sampras to regain his GOAT status. I’ll take it…LOL.


SG1 Says:

Meant comment about Lendl for AD Tennis, not Hawkeye. Sorry.


ID Fan Says:

AD Tennis:

Great to know your credentials. I am a 4.5 player myself and maybe I will ask you for tips COACH!

SG1:

Wimbledon as no.1 tournament makes sense to me. I was a Sampras fan who now supports Djokovic. I wouldn’t mind if Djokovic wins 7 wimbledons and 0 French Open!

I think Federer is the greatest player I have seen play at Wimbledon. Federer-Sampras 2001 match is one of my favorite matches – some great tennis those 2 played. I guess we can say they know how to play tennis.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

ID Tennis i think Novak begs to differ though,he has said he would dearly love to win the FO.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Sorry ID Fan not ID Tennis.


Steve 27 Says:

The truth is Nadal beat Federer in his sacred land in 2008.
Can we say the same thing in Roland Garros?
The answer is a resounding no. And it’s not even close.


Steve 27 Says:

I will add Sampras and Djokovic there too.

Priceless!. and you are a teacher?
As Mc Enroe said: You’ve got to be kidding me!


ID Fan Says:

Tennis X Hippy Chic : I think Novak will not complain if he wins 7 Wimbledons.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Seems a bit bizarre when a fan states that they dont want their favorite to win a certain GS,i mean a GS is a GS,not saying its the most prestigious,as all players indeed want Wimbledon out of all the GS,but ive had chats with alot of Novak fans Jane,Mat4,Wogboy,Courbon,Duro,Nina etc,and they have all said they would love for Novak to win the FO at some point,Nina came across as been quite bitter when Rafa beat Novak in the FO final last year.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

ID Fan i think your missing the point,but fine whatever,no harm or foul.


James Says:

If some Novak fans are okay with Djokovic never winning the French, fine with me. I’d like Rafa to win that thing in Paris every single year until retirement.

I’d like him to end his career with more than 10 French Opens. 2-3 more non clay slams would be good too.


Giles Says:

http://alturl.com/8ve4v
We now have Pete Sampras chiming in!
#Vamos Rafa


hawkeye Says:

Hmmm, who to believe, the Coach or former GOAT Pete Sampras…

Sampras on who is the greatest tennis player of all time: “It’s always been so clear to me that Roger is the greatest. But I would say that, with Rafa doing what he’s been doing, he has an argument to be in the conversation. Rafa isn’t done yet. He could win more majors. He’s got a winning record against everyone that he has played in his generation. He’s won the Davis Cup, he’s won the Olympics. It’s such bar-room talk. You look at Rafa and what he has been able to do, you look at Roger and the fact that he did what he did for so long, winning all those majors. I hate talking about it. I feel as though every generation has the guy. Which generation was the best? You could talk about it all day.”

Yes Pete, it was once clear to me that you were the GOAT and then, like you, it finally became clear that Federer was the GOAT.

There’s a new GOAT in town and people are beginning to realize it. Some sooner than others.

Change is good. Continual Improvement.


hawkeye Says:

Sampras lists Davis Cup, Olympics and, what’s this? Head-to-head?

Blasphemy!

Obviously not a TENNIS player I guess? Sorry Pete, apparently you don’t make the cut.


Margot Says:

@SG1 11.57pm
That’s such a good point about Lendl. Mac is my favourite player ever, Andy’s a very close second of course..;) and when I think about Mac I don’t think about losing H2H’s or a lack of sufficient slams to be a candidate for goatiness, I just think of the most magical, wild, talented tennis player whom I have been privileged to watch.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Its only Petes opinion thats all just like it was Andres,im just wondering if this is a tongue in cheek sly dig at Roger.


James Says:

@hawkeye, at this rate, some Fed fans soon will be arguing with Pete and Andre. ;)


hawkeye Says:

… and JMac too lol!

Apparently, the only former GOATS that still don’t play real TENNIS are Laver and Federer.

Just a matter of time.


Tennis X Hippy Chic Says:

Time for this thread to close me thinks,same old conversations going around in circles,im really missing posts from Courbon,Mat4,Wogboy,Harry,Jane,Grendel,Raquet,Colin,the DA etc this forum is becoming a tit for tat battle between the Rafa and Roger fans now,im missing the diversity of all the different fan groups that we used to have here.


James Says:

Don’t worry, @hippy chic, normalcy will return once the action begins in Beijing. Then next is Shanghai. Some good matches to come.


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[...] a few days after Andre Agassi gave his thoughts on the “bar-room” GOAT debate, Pete Sampras has now offered his take on who’s the [...]


ID Fan Says:

Hippy Chic:

I meant 7 Wimbledons 0 FO will not be a problem for Novak.

James:

I would really want Novak to win Wimbledon as many times as he can – say 7. I can dream as a fan.

FO – 1 time will be great. Even if he does not win, it did not prevent Sampras from being GOAT, as others have pointed out.


James Says:

ID Fan, no worries, mate! Even I’m not a Djokovic fan, I hope he wins at least 1 French Open for the career slam. I feel like he deserves it for being a great champ.

Oh yes 7 Wimbledons for 0 is good for anyone. I’m afraid the opposite is also true. 7 French Opens for 0 Wimbledon, I won’t mind.

I’m not sure Djokovic can win more than 2 Wimbledons. He had a good chance this year but ran into an inspired Muzza on home soil.


James Says:

*even though I’m not a Djokovic fan, I hope he wins the French at least once.


SG1 Says:

Definitely would like to see Nole win at RG in the near future. A lot of rough breaks for him in the recent past. He’s too good on clay to not pull out at least one FO.

I expect him to bounce back next year and dig a little deeper in some of the close matches and pull them out. I have a feeling he’ll defend his AO title. Question is, what happens after that?


madmax Says:

rafaeli Says:
The WTF is a glorified exho.

September 26th, 2013 at 1:45 pm

Is that because rafa hasn’t won the tournament? Yeah. I get it. When Rafa doesn’t win a tournament, it becomes a glorified exho.

How convenient.

Steve 27 Says:
The truth is Nadal beat Federer in his sacred land in 2008.
Can we say the same thing in Roland Garros?
The answer is a resounding no. And it’s not even close.

September 27th, 2013 at 5:30 am

How distorted is your view?

Remember SODERLING beat the crap out of rafa in 2009. Problem is you guys come up with the excuse that he was “injured”. Nope! Soderling beat Rafa fair and square. If you aren’t well enough to enter and play the tournament, then DON’T PLAY! and certainly don’t come up with excuses as to why you lost!

But don’t use the excuse that because your guy was beaten FAIR AND SQUARE IN THE FOURTH ROUND, THAT ROGER’S WIN HAS AN ASTERIX AGAINST IT! IT DOESN’T! NOT FED’S FAULT he reached the final and Rafa didn’t!

Deal with it!


Steve 27 Says:

kid, you need to calm down. the time of your idol has passed and the nature of sport is that there are always best players in the passing of TIME. But I will not waste my time with someone as stubborn and does not understand that survival is HISTORY and ALWAYS will be better tennis players, football players, swimmers, finally, better athletes than the PAST, as representing you old idol. And you have to deal and live with it FOREVER. VAMOS!


madmax Says:

Steve27,

You see that is the difference.

Rafa is a great, great player. One of the best and if we are talking about slam totals, currently Roger is the greatest of all time. Should Rafa surpass him, then I would have no hesitation in calling him the greatest of all time.

You put it here about the FO. Distorted, cock-eyed viewpoint, to which I replied and to which you deftly side stepped. Simply because Roger won the FO, after reaching the final, and as Rafa didn’t reach the final, then Roger’s win doesn’t count?

In all seriousness, I have never heard anything so lame. At the best of times, you come across as a fed hater so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised. But at least come up with a cogent argument that works, rather than base it on the bile you have in your stomach which rests there whenever you discuss the current GOAT.

I think that is a fair comment.

Your response above was disappointing. I waited all night for that?


madmax Says:

Yeah I agree Steve27

Vamos!

Vamos Federer!


didi Says:

How many of the Tennis Masters finals has Nadal one compared to Nadal. A BIG ZERO!!!!


Steve 27 Says:

zzzzz


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[...] After his first round win over Santiago Giraldo in Beijing, 13-time Grand Slam champion Rafael Nadal addressed the GOAT question that both Pete Sampras and Andre Agassi raised last week. [...]

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