Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT? - MensTennisForums.com
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 04:11 AM Thread Starter
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Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

If you just do open era, Rod Laver shouldn't be part of the discussion, since most of his achievements were before the open era (not that a grand slam is all that shabby). If it's because most of us have never seen them play, I can't imagine too many people have seen Laver play. I assume it's because of the method everyone uses to judge: count number of slams won (with a few adjustments for diversity, age, peak level, etc), which becomes difficult before the open era. But that really is an awful way to judge. I assume this has been discussed ad nauseum, but oh well.

Edit: on this board only, of course; elsewhere, I've seen plenty of talk about Tilden, Gonzales, etc.

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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 04:33 AM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

Well, not only have most people probably not seen Tilden, Gonzales, Budge, and such here, it's hard to even judge numerically what they did, what with the amateur/pro game conflicts, different rules in some parts, etc.



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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 04:41 AM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

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Originally Posted by hra87 View Post
If you just do open era, Rod Laver shouldn't be part of the discussion, since most of his achievements were before the open era (not that a grand slam is all that shabby). If it's because most of us have never seen them play, I can't imagine too many people have seen Laver play. I assume it's because of the method everyone uses to judge: count number of slams won (with a few adjustments for diversity, age, peak level, etc), which becomes difficult before the open era. But that really is an awful way to judge. I assume this has been discussed ad nauseum, but oh well.

Edit: on this board only, of course; elsewhere, I've seen plenty of talk about Tilden, Gonzales, etc.
Didn't one of his calendar slams happen in the open era? I think it did

Anyway, before the open era tennis was so restricted to club goers, rich, etc., that it probably excluded the bulk of the great competition. So it makes sense to not look at their achievements the same way as when everyone who wanted to participate got in through their own steam for the most part
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 05:01 AM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

Take the example of Pancho Gonzalez... If you read up on history, it's clear that Gonazalez was a truly phenomenal player. But the structure of the tennis world in his day was so utterly different than that of the Open Era, it's almost impossible to make a comparison.

Gonzalez was No. 1 on the pro tour for an unparalleled 8 consecutive years, but he only won two major titles (both at the U.S., before he turned pro and was no longer eligilble to play those amateur events). Weighing his achievements against Federer, Sampras or Borg is a really thorny undertaking. You could resort to anecdotal evidence (his contemporaries raved about him!), but that's impossible to quantify and compare. I think it's just too hard, so many commentators/writers limit their discussion to the Open Era, for better or for worse.

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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 05:02 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

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Originally Posted by R.Federer View Post
Didn't one of his calendar slams happen in the open era? I think it did

Anyway, before the open era tennis was so restricted to club goers, rich, etc., that it probably excluded the bulk of the great competition. So it makes sense to not look at their achievements the same way as when everyone who wanted to participate got in through their own steam for the most part
Yes, one of his grand slams was in the open era, but IMO that isn't enough to put him in the running for best player of the open era.

I agree that it makes it difficult because of the way it works, but if you factor in the "level of competition" it makes it difficult any way you look at it, even open era only. Add in new racquets, the popularization of hard courts...obviously the whole discussion is meaningless and subjective, but it's just for fun, so for fun, why not add in the old players?

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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 05:12 AM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

I know that Tilden was a legend.
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 05:48 AM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

MTF doesn't have a former pro board, so it mostly attracts the younger fans from what I can gather. That's fine - this is the best tennis message board for discussing ongoing tournaments.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 10:18 AM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

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MTF doesn't have a former pro board, so it mostly attracts the younger fans from what I can gather. That's fine - this is the best tennis message board for discussing ongoing tournaments.
Blast from the past.

There are a lot of older posters on MTF (depending on what you mean by older) but most of them don't come on GM every day because of the younger members you mentioned trolling and flaming. If you see a good topic occasionally you get a lot of more sensible posters posting and it can be good.

You also see many of the older and wiser members staying in their favourite players fan forum for a friendlier atmosphere.

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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 01:19 PM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

lol

The BIGGEST (borderline delusional) fan of players on General Message Board according to Forehander:
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 02:47 PM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

Gonzalez, Rosewall, Hoad were the equal of Laver in their primes. Each, dominated Laver for a few years when he turned pro. Had Rosewall and Gonzalez been allowed to play the Slams during their Pro years, They would probably won anywhere from 15-20 Slams or more. Combining the Pro Slams and regular slams Rosewall has won 23 of them, Laver 19. Gonzalez was, as someone here has mentioned, the #1 Pro for eight years. I am not sure how many combined Slams Gonzalez won, but I am sure it is close to Rosewall^s total.
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 09-16-2007, 04:04 PM
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Re: Why doesn't anyone prior to Rod Laver come into discussion for GOAT?

####

Don Budge deserves to be mentioned<
6-straight slam victories [2-Wimbledon, 2-USO, 1-AO, 1-FO]~~ including THE SLAM in 1938!!!

...
Travel was so much harder in those days, so the fact that he`d take a ship half way across the World from America, to Australia, & then Europe... is in itself a great achievement [not to mention that he won THE SLAM]!!!
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