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Who is the greatest tennis player of all time?

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  • Originally posted by Trickstat View Post

    Phelps, like a T&F athlete, can be assessed by the clock (or 'tape measure' on the field) as well as the titles he won.
    Even in T&F and swimming hardware is a better measuring stick than the clock lest we believe that Bolt was 0.47s better than Hayes in the 100 and Phelps was 10s better than Spitz in the 200.

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    • Originally posted by TN1965 View Post
      Well, Emmo was certainly more noteworthy than Neal Fraser. (No disrespect to Fraser.)

      And I think you are underestimating Rosewall, like most other people. He was 22 when he turned pro. Two years younger than the age Laver turned pro. He was 33 when he got to play the Grand Slam again. He won a record 15 pro majors in between. I once went into a very extended argument with an Aussie guy over whether Laver or Rosewall was the GOAT (this was before Federer reached his prime). Although neither of us convinced the other, we ended up agreeing that those two were the two greatest. (Hoad was better in their amateur careers, But his back injury prevented him from matching Rosewall in pro and open careers.)
      Agree about Emmo and Neale Fraser - not really sure why I included him in this discussion. He's another level down

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      • Originally posted by jazzcyclist View Post
        I'm not going to get into a silly game of semantics when I'm pretty certain you and other folks here understand what I'm talking about. Phelps may be the GOAT but he also has a body of work that Laver doesn't due to the era he played in. Laver is more comparable to Jesse Owens than he is to Phelps or Usain Bolt.
        No, disagree. Laver is stronger than Owens, which is saying something. Two calendar year Grand Slams - only in tennis or golf ever to do that. Then missed 5 years in his prime when pros couldn't play the Grand Slams. Until Federer came along he was almost universally acclaimed as the GOAT

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        • Originally posted by TN1965 View Post
          What makes that match more important than 2017 Australian Open? Most people thought Federer was "done" by that time, and he proved all the doubters wrong (including myself). Nadal was up a break in the fifth and Federer won the last five games of the match.
          The 2017 Australian Open was a great match but does not compare to the epic 2012 Aussie Open final between Djokovic and Nadal, which Djokovic won in 5 sets, 7-5 in the 5th, after 5 hours and 53 minutes on court in stifling heat. Neither player could stand for the victory ceremony.

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          • Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post

            No, disagree. Laver is stronger than Owens, which is saying something. Two calendar year Grand Slams - only in tennis or golf ever to do that. Then missed 5 years in his prime when pros couldn't play the Grand Slams. Until Federer came along he was almost universally acclaimed as the GOAT
            Not quite true. Laver was universally acclaimed as the GOAT for at least 10 years after his retirement, but many experts gravitated to both Borg and Sampras in the next 20 years, until the rise of Federer changed the equation. Now both Nadal and Djokovic have entered the picture (though Djokovic is currently just in the margin).

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            • And on the women's side, does anyone still believes that Serena Williams will ever surpass Margaret Court with 25 majors?

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              • Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post

                No, disagree. Laver is stronger than Owens, which is saying something. Two calendar year Grand Slams - only in tennis or golf ever to do that. Then missed 5 years in his prime when pros couldn't play the Grand Slams. Until Federer came along he was almost universally acclaimed as the GOAT
                In comparing him to Owens I mean we have to extrapolate what he might have done because of the limited opportunities in his era. We don't know that Owens would have racked up as much hardware as Lewis if two Olympics didn't get cancelled, there had been World Championships in those days and the sport had professionalized but we believe he would have. Similarly, we don't know that Laver would have won 20+ Grand Slams if he had been born 10-15 years later but we believe it.
                Last edited by jazzcyclist; 10-15-2020, 04:01 AM.

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                • Originally posted by AFTERBURNER View Post
                  And on the women's side, does anyone still believes that Serena Williams will ever surpass Margaret Court with 25 majors?
                  I don't see her making it to even 24 - getting old, injuries piling on. Gets tough to recover from those at 39 yo, and that only gets worse. She has Achilles tendinitis and said she would be ready in 6 weeks. I first got Achilles problems at about 42 yo, and finally got rid of it after my 2nd surgery in 2014 (62 yo), so only took me 20 years.

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                  • I still go Laver, Federer, Nadal in that order. Rosewall never won Wimbledon, Borg and Lew Hoad never won the US Open, Sampras, McEnroe and Connors never won at Roland Garros (Chang did) Djokovic needs to get his head together. Too much stuff going on with him right now. He needs to focus more like Nadal.

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                    • Originally posted by jazzcyclist View Post
                      Even in T&F and swimming hardware is a better measuring stick than the clock lest we believe that Bolt was 0.47s better than Hayes in the 100 and Phelps was 10s better than Spitz in the 200.
                      Yes, times and distances have to be considered relative to their era. If you greatly improve the WR and/or hold it for a long time then that marks you out as particularly outstanding.

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                      • Originally posted by Per Andersen View Post
                        I still go Laver, Federer, Nadal in that order. Rosewall never won Wimbledon, Borg and Lew Hoad never won the US Open, Sampras, McEnroe and Connors never won at Roland Garros (Chang did) Djokovic needs to get his head together. Too much stuff going on with him right now. He needs to focus more like Nadal.
                        I agree with Per - here's my top 10 in order

                        1 Laver
                        2 Federer
                        3 Nadal
                        4 Tilden
                        5 Djokovic
                        6 Gonzales
                        7 Sampras
                        8 Borg
                        9 Rosewall
                        X Connors

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                        • Originally posted by bambam1729 View Post
                          I agree with Per - here's my top 10 in order
                          1 Laver
                          2 Federer
                          3 Nadal
                          4 Tilden
                          5 Djokovic
                          6 Gonzales
                          7 Sampras
                          8 Borg
                          9 Rosewall
                          X Connors
                          I'm close:
                          1. Laver
                          2. Federer
                          3. Tilden
                          4. Djolovic
                          5. Sampras
                          6. Nadal
                          7. Borg

                          that's where ai lose clarity . . .

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                          • Ok, So Tilden is in there but where to we put Don Budge?

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                            • Originally posted by Per Andersen View Post
                              Ok, So Tilden is in there but where to we put Don Budge?
                              Good point

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                              • Laver won the Grand Slam twice but as bambam pointed out, he never faced anyone of the caliber of "Fedalovic". Would he have won the Grand Slam if he had faced players of that caliber? Conversely, how many times would Federer, Nadal or Djokovic have won the Grand Slam if they didn't have to face each other? Also, how many total Grand Slams would Nadal have if not for his multitude of injuries? It's amazing that he hasn't been demoralized into retirement. Certainly most athletes would have.

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