Novak Djokovic On Catching Roger Federer’s 17 Slams: I Don’t Think About It At All, It’s Not A Goal!
by Tom Gainey | October 12th, 2016, 1:05 pm

Last month Novak Djokovic admitted that he no longer was motivated by the No. 1 ranking or winning Grand Slams. A few weeks later, Djokovic was asked if anything had changed in his outlook. Well, it hasn’t. And he doesn’t even have catching Roger Federer’s 17 Slams as a goal.

“Right now, no,” Djokovic said of reaching 17. “I don’t think about that at all. I don’t think about any achievements. I don’t think about any trophies or No. 1s of the world, the ranking or anything like that.

“It’s completely different,” he said. “I play partly because, you know, I also enjoy being successful and seeing the results of my work. But on the other hand, that comes second now. It’s not the priority.”

Djokovic again explained his new outlook.

“I try to look at things from different perspective, from more human perspective rather than from perspective of professional tennis player,” he said. “When I get on the court, of course I want to give my best and eventually try to win the match, but that comes as a consequence of how I feel and how I approach, how I prepare, you know, just a general mindset and approach. But not as a priority of must-win type of mindset, you know, because that is not working for me anymore.

“I’m going to stick with that and I have just a different kind of vision right now.”

Djokovic added that some of the recent injuries could be a factor to his new mindset.

“Just before I arrived to Olympic Games, things were looking great, I was in great shape,” he said. “I won Toronto. You know, I was, as I can say, the peak of my abilities. I was extremely motivated to do well there, but I lost that equilibrium. I lost that balance, because I exaggerated with the way I pushed myself in that kind of preparation and I really, you know, wanted it too much maybe.”

“So that’s why I think this injury, if I analyze it more deeply, is a reflection of that kind of mindset. I learned a lesson and I move on. Again, I can learn so much from these kind of circumstances and situations, especially when I lose big matches, that that’s when I learn the biggest lessons.”

On Thursday in Shanghai the Serb continues his title defense against Vasek Pospisil.

“What I’m saying is that I’m still here, I’m still playing because I enjoy it, but that’s my main priority,” he said. “I’m a father, I’m a husband, I enjoy my life to full extent. But in tennis, you know, things happened differently for me last three months and that’s it. Right now this is where I am.”

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34 Comments for Novak Djokovic On Catching Roger Federer’s 17 Slams: I Don’t Think About It At All, It’s Not A Goal!

Willow Says:

Surely if you say your not thinking about something, means you are otherwise you wouldnt even mention it ! ….

Willow Says:

And for the record, when Rafa was having his amazing year in 2013 after he had just won the USO, he said the exact same thing, so its not me been selective ….

Van Persie Says:

Of course, Novak would be pleased to reach that record, or to surpass it, but he wants to play without that pressure. They are asking him at almost every press conf about that, so he has to say somethibg about :)…and so they did also with Rafa.

J-Kath Says:

Yes gals – it’s a p-ss!
And the pursuit of Andy re. No. 1. is almost as bad.

Danica Says:

Media puts ridiculous, unnecessary pressure to these guys. Nole has already built one of the most amazing legacies in sport and even if he retires now and doesn’t win anything, his achievements stay. So, his approach to the rest of his career is that what happens happens. He is not gonna sweat and cry over missed opportunities . He is not gonna expect too much of himself anymore. He will just enjoy it while it lasts and try to be at ease and relaxed. To be honest, I think that it’s actually a scary prospect for his opponents. If he swings freely and abandons the passive play from the baseline we saw in the USO final, he’ll be hard to beat.

Giles Says:

The faker strikes again lol. Not thinking about 17, ffs that’s all he’s thinking about.

Danica Says:

Um Giles, don’t you have more worrisome issues to think about? We know, hard not to be affected by greatness inside and out, hard to ignore the supperior mind.

RZ Says:

Purely for the purpose of stirring up trouble…😃

“I try to look at things from different perspective, from more human perspective rather than from perspective of professional tennis player”

Headline: Novak Djokovic doesn’t think professional tennis players are human!!!

truthsquad Says:

What I once thought was quite possible, now seems unlikely. Maybe you can only sustain that level of play for so long emotionally or mentally.

RZ Says:

@truthsquad – I think it’s still very much in the realm of possibility. It was inevitable that Novak’s level would drop off for at least a while after such a long period of sustained excellence. It all depends on how next year goes for him. He could very well have another 3-slam year.

J-Kath Says:

Nole probably did himself a small dis-service by confessing to be human. Some players may believe him and believe they can take advantage and a few more than in the past may actually succeed.

I hope you all understand that – it’s late and two glasses of wine later. After all it is Saturday night isn’t it?

skeezer Says:

@5:57 post
Unless your the GOAT RF.

James Says:

17, 14. Those are final numbers. Lets see where Nole ends.

As I have said before – even the topmost players like these, they win lots of slams, and then it stops suddenly.

Slam no. 16 at AO 2010 for that for Fed. Then just one more in 7 years.

Slam No. 13 at USO 2013 was that for Nadal. Then just (and barely) 1 at FO 2014, that’s it.

Will Slam No. 12 at FO 2016 be “that one” for Nole, after which he struggles to win slams and wins just 1 or 2 more?

Though Nole does have the advantage of NO GREAT YOUNGER players………..

Van Persie Says:

Like Federer had NO GREAT OPPONENT from his own genaration. This was his advantage from 2004 until 2007 ;)

Danica Says:

Here is novak speaking about his goals in 2017 for chinese tv news after his second round win …now we know how he has forearms like spinach eating popay

Giles Says:

Has anybody noticed the size of his head? Vertically?? Freak! Lol

Old School Hitter Says:

Very complex, several levels. Home pressure has to be there, balance between full time never ending training and wife and son is impossible. Takes a strong man to pull back. Takes a strong man not to lament over lost majors. He could already have few more titles, maybe 15 or 16. Could also have only 8 or 9. Many Super Bowl and WS and USTA Major champs have said losing the big one hurts more than the joy of winning the big one. If Novak can truly move emotionally past those loses, prioritize family first and cease the macro chase with the associated wear and tear I commend him. Doesn’t mean he won’t win another major; I interpret this as a higher level of rationalizing his world.

Temple Says:

Old School Hitter, spot on. I don’t think Novak Djokovic really felt “joy” in this year’s French. Relief, yes in the nth degree, but joy, not so much. Having said this, I am watching a much more balanced individual in Shanghai so far, no self loathing or racket breaking. But let’s wait and see.

J-Kath Says:

Danica: Those are crazy pictures. Don’t think many females would allow themselves to be displayed so distorted….ouch!

J-Kath Says:

Several articles going the rounds re. farewell to Becker & Novak “partnership”. Nole indicates the arrangement will continue until the end of the season.

AndyMira Says:

Real DANI[The Saint],come out please..Your FAKER has strikes again at 6:00 am..

Danica Says:

Just to let everyone here be aware: THAT WAS NOT ME @ 6.00 AM. I didn’t even bother to open that link.

AndyMira, thanks for noticing. ;)

AndyMira Says:

@Dani..Anything for you sis..

Danica Says:

Thanks dear ;).

I really cannot comprehend the mind of an internet troll.

Margot Says:

Danica, just think Jabba The Hutt, that should help…;)

Danica Says:

spot on! ;)

AndyMira Says:

Dani..there’s so many trolls in the LORD OF THE RINGS as well..Pick one..Gollum,Saruman,Aragorn etc..

Danica Says:

I know of those in “The Hobbit”. And in “Harry Potter” :)). And if I’m not mistaken, there is an animated movie coming up one of these days :).
As far as LOTR is concerned, send me that Legolas elf ;). Or better yet, Boromir :)))

AndyMira Says:

Dani sis..Doesn’t matter which’s ugly inside out!Sorry no disrespect to Trolls..

Margot Says:

Yikes! Aragon is a mighty hero/ warrior m’dear.
A troll? No way!

AndyMira Says:

@M…Ha ha ha..Really M?My mistake then..A thousand apology to Aragon fan!

Danica Says:

Yes, I was a bit surprised that Aragorn is mentioned in troll context as he is handsome (of course), warrior king, the embodiment of a fair and brave ruler.

No worries AM, the world of fantasy swarms with trolls, gnomes, orcs and the such :)))

Back to tennis, surprised also to see Nole win, not surprised with other results, but judging by the scores and comments, this tournament is Andy’s to lose.

AndyMira Says:

@Dani..for the past 5 years..i never ever count Nole out in every tournament that he’s entered..Not once..Like yesterday,i knew as soon as he won the 2nd set,he’s going to win the match..He’s already done a psychologically damage to Mischa..And agree with you,this tournament is Andy’s to lose BUT once again,i would never ever count Nole matter how inconsistent he is atm..He’s really really good to find a way to win..That’s one of his speciality..

FedExpress Says:

you can count him out for a while AndyMira

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