Roddick, Blake Just Say No to Davis Cup in 2010
by Sean Randall | January 7th, 2010, 4:09 pm

Surprise or not a surprise? Peter Bodo is reporting that both Andy Roddick and James Blake are leaving Davis Cup off their 2010 schedules. ADHEREL

“It certainly appears to be the end of era,” longtime US captain Patrick McEnroe said to TENNIS Thursday. “But the door will always remain open to both of those guys in the event they decide they want to play again.”

“End of an era?” Sounds like they will never be back!

I am not surprised that Roddick passed up a free plane ride to Serbia to play Novak Djokovic on clay in early March, but I am that he’s dumped the entire year which means if things do go south for the US in the first round (they almost assuredly will now!), then he’ll miss a vital relegation tie later in the year.

Roddick has been outspoken about the length of the tour season, and now being a husband this may be the best way in his mind to reduce to the workload. Or maybe it was something else entirely (?). Whatever the reason, I’m sure we’ll get some answers later tonight after Andy plays Richard Gasquet in the Brisbane quarterfinals.

Blake is on the downslope of his career so I’m not 100% sure he would have received the call to play against Serbia anyway, but Roddick is or was the clear go-to guy for the U.S.

Now Sam Querrey and his stitched up arm will carry the load. The No. 2 slot will likely go to either Mardy Fish, John Isner or maybe even Taylor Dent if he continues to climb plus the Bryans. Wayne Odesnik is a viable choice on the clay. Regardless, it doesn’t look good for the U.S. in Davis Cup if Andy’s not part of it.

Welcome to your new job captain McEnroe.

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28 Comments for Roddick, Blake Just Say No to Davis Cup in 2010

huh Says:

Good decision by Roddick as usual, I hope he concentrates and gives his best at slams, I would support him 100% at this year’s Wimby! That said, in case Fed doesn’t win AO (God Forbid!), I’d throw all my support behind Roddick or Murray there to win it.

jane Says:

I agree with huh; this is a good decision by both Roddick and Blake. They have won a cup with their team; they have also paid their dues, both being stalwart Davis Cup players, playing for their country whenever they could. Now players like Querrey, maybe even Donald(!), can step up, and it’ll give them added practice and experience.

jane Says:

I will add that clearly both Roddick, but especially Blake, are in the second half of their careers so they may want to devote time to their individual results solely, and that seems like a totally fair (and wise) decision.

kudz Says:

well, if the refs are making calls on both ends of the court, i guess there should be a line here about how andy is ducking novak, right??

andrea Says:

what’s happened to gulbis? he was promising.

jane Says:

kudz, I am not sure if I catch your drift, but just wanted to say, Roddick wouldn’t have any need to duck Novak since he’s won their last few matches. So I wouldn’t think that has much to do with it, imo anyhow. I see it more in the light of Roddick wanting to focus on trying to get another slam, before he one day retires.

sar Says:

I think Roddick wouldn’t like playing Novak on clay in Serbia with fans who might not like what he said about Novak in NY. Might be revenge booing.

jane Says:

True sar – I hadn’t thought of “revenge booing” but I suppose you’re spot on there. Certainly, in Davis Cup too, crowds get, shall we say, “frisky”!?

But I still suspect Roddick is opting out – particularly if it’s for the entire year – so that he can focus on slams.

kudz Says:

jane, i dont think roddick is ducking anyone, he made a good decision for his calendar and his career..but when roger does the same, then its called ducking

Cindy_Brady Says:

How selfish of Roddick!

He should step up and play for his country when it is down. Maybe he is afraid of Djokovic. After all, Djokovic is still a rising star and Roddick is in the twilight of his career and fading fast.

I like tennis bullies Says:

so is roddick done with davis cup for life or just for the first round? article doesnt say.

puckbandit Says:

The season is just too long and the travel too much of a burden in today’s game – even without the Davis Cup.

Still, as much as the players complain (and I think they have a right to) they still pad their schedules with exhibition matches for the $$$. So I’m not yet shedding tears for these guys.

Perhaps his decision would be different if it weren’t on clay and in Europe?

I don’t fault any of the players for bowing out. But I have to admit, Johnny Mac’s commitment to Davis cup while rival Connors avoided it, is part of what endeared him to me early on.

puckbandit Says:


How about our boys (yours – CA and mine-USA) in Saskatoon!
What a game! Lots for all involved to be proud of!


Andrew Miller Says:

Roddick did the right thing – this is a gift to younger players who need more experience. Roddick became much more of a big-time player through Davis Cup – he is letting other players have the same opportunity, to face big pressure situations and see what they’re made of. So what if the U.S. Davis Cup team sucks it up – it’s the exposure and if I’m Patrick McEnroe I’m calling the players right now and selling them on an opportunity. Because it is.

Davis Cup is where players turn into champions. Roddick is a champion and he doesnt have much time left out there – he’s already accomplished everything necessary in Davis Cup, there’s no need to do it again. Time for someone else to have a chance.

Andrew Miller Says:

As for Blake, sorry I havent been a believer in James Blake for a while. So much game, so much less than Fernando Verdasco to show for it. Verdasco used to be the poster boy for wasted talent, but he’s making the most of it and for better or worse has swapped lives with James Blake. Blake, man you are one helluva tennis ball striker. But unfortunately you have not risen past that status for a long time. It will take a miracle to see Blake in a Grand Slam semifinal. And those are in short supply these days!

jane Says:

puckbandit – yes what a game! I posted that night to see if you were watching. Jordan Eberle is something else. Wow. And the USA did such a great job at shot-blocking. And that was the juniors. Lots to which to look forward in the NHL in year’s to come.

puckbandit Says:


I haven’t been to the boards for a few days so I missed your original posts.

I was really impressed with the speed of the game. The future of the NHL looks pretty bright.

As a Devils fan I was very pleased. All four of our prospects: Cormier, Henrique with CA and Josefson and Tedenby with Sweden, all had a good tourny.

Who is your NHL team?

puckbandit Says:

@Andrew Miller

I agree with your sentiment about it being time for Roddick to pass the torch to the next generation.

Also agree with your assessment on Blake. I thought after he came back from his terrible year of illness and injury after his father’s death that he would work to develop a more complete game. He is a great ball striker — when his game is on. Unfortunately, he never really did develop a “plan b.” No bag a tricks to turn to, hence little ability to adjust his game when needed. It’s a shame really, because whenever he would string together a string of beautiful play and reveal his potential, I would get my hopes up. But he could never keep it up with any consistency.

jane Says:

puckbandit, I am torn between the Blackhawks and the Canucks mainly; I was happy for Pittsburgh last year but don’t really want them to win this year again; I like both the Rangers and Devils; and finally, I have a soft spot for the Leafs. Just like with tennis, I tend not to get too attached to one team (player), until playoffs of course. ; )

puckbandit Says:

I like the Hawks too, great story. And I’ve always admired Bobbie Lou on the nucks. If it has to be a western team, I wouldn’t mind either of those. Except the current media love affair with the Hawks is getting a bit obnoxious and I may hate them by the time we get to April. Would love another cup for Marty and a first for Parise, but it Devs would be a darkhorse this year.

May/June always has the possibility of being such a great sports for me with FO, Wimby and Stanely Cup.

huh Says:

Cindy_Brady better not call Roddick selfish! Cindy_Brady herself is the most selfish. And Roddick fears not even Federer and that’s why he always fights and has kept most of his matches with Roger close to very close. Roddick doesn’t run away from challenges, not even against Roger Federer, what to speak of guys like Novak! Heck! Cindy_Brady lives in her own selfish and delusional world only to take break to indulge in mud-slinging and make unwarranted criticism of the GREAT tennis players. It’s often laughable to see Cindy drawing her baseless conclusions against players.

Sean Randall Says:

The U.S. was also in a precarious situation with Davis Cup this year. Odds were against them winning in Serbia on red clay, so more than likely that would have been their only main draw DC tie of 2010.

Had Roddick played and they lost, I don’t know if Andy would have availed himself for the relegation matches down the road against potentially teams like Chile, Canada or Brazil.

And no, I wouldn’t call Roddick (or Blake) selfish. Andy’s punched the clock for Davis Cup more than enough in his career, and this year for whatever reason he decided to take a break. There’s nothing wrong with that is there?

huh Says:

Sean Randall, thanks for clearing the air on the alleged selfishness of Roddick.

Nina Says:

Of course Roddick is afraid of Novak and he should!

MMT Says:

Roddick isn’t afraid of anyone. He’s earned the right to quite Davis Cup altogether and his love of the competition and the US team can never be questioned.

By the way – the US is baked – they’ll be lucky to win a set in Serbia no matter who they play.

BumblebeeTennisNYC Says:

I think this is a good career move on both their parts; they’ll both still shine in other events and like Jane said, it’s gives others the chance to step up.

huh Says:

Nina, may be you’re afraid of Roddick! ;)

Anyway, you’re a very enthusiastic Nole fan, I like it. It’s bad that Duro who’s apart from you one of the BIGGEST Nole fans on the planet, is not here to give you company. But I’d rather say that it’s good to love Nole as a fantastic player that he actually is, he deserves that, but it’s pretty useless to assume that Rod’s afraid of Nole, may be it gives you pleasure, but it doesn’t mean anything, it’s absolutely no basis. If anything, Rod’s shown throughout his career that he’s a respectful and decent guy and respects and admires pretty much everybody’s talent and worth, but he’s by no means a coward or afraid of anyone, let alone Nole! On the contrary, Nole has time and again exposed his nervousness against the top guys. That said, even Roger and Rafa find it tough when going through pressure cooker situations and have faltered. Roddick too has done that sometimes, I accept, but it doesn’t mean that it’s all about freaking out seeing the opponent! Hope I’m not too harsh on you. If I appear harsh, then I must add that I’ve nothing against you, just differed from your view a bit. I think that’s ok, no?

tenisbebe Says:

jane Says: “puckbandit, I am torn between the Blackhawks and the Canucks mainly” Woo hoo! Jane I am a Chicago girl and a Blackhawks fan. Puckbandit, didn’t know the media has been having a lovefest with the Blackhawks – what a switch! We all in Chicagoland are just grateful that ole man Wirtz finally bit the dust (isn’t that terrible?) & Rocky is a passionate, capable manager/owner. GO BLAKHAWKS!!

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