When did the modern era start? - MensTennisForums.com

 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 11:37 AM Thread Starter
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When did the modern era start?

When people speak of the modern era what do they mean?

Also lets say we wanted to decide on a GOAT for the open era and a GOAT before the open era, because that would make things a lot simpler. Where does that leave Laver? He won 6 slams before the open era and 5 after. That would mean he cant be the GOAT of the modern era cos he only won 5 slams, even though it was the calender slam. Or can he?

I dont think there can be one GOAT, but if we devide it into two eras, one where Laver is and one where he is not, it will make it at least easier to decide on a GOAT(one in each era).

So where did the modern era start, if indeed there is such a thing?

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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 12:53 PM
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Re: When did the modern era start?

I would say the modern era would be synonymous with revolution in racket technology, ie post wooden racket era. So from about 1983 (by which time most players had converted to graphite)onwards which is post Borg and heralded power tennis spearheaded by Lendl and Becker.
There is no GOAT, just all-time greats.
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 01:03 PM Thread Starter
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Re: When did the modern era start?

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Originally Posted by Allez-Ollie View Post
I would say the modern era would be synonymous with revolution in racket technology, ie post wooden racket era. So from about 1983 (by which time most players had converted to graphite)onwards which is post Borg and heralded power tennis spearheaded by Lendl and Becker.
There is no GOAT, just all-time greats.
Yeah thats pretty much what i thought. But i think one can definitely make a case for a GOAT in the modern era. When you include Laver and Borg it gets complicated.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 01:14 PM
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Re: When did the modern era start?

I don't believe in a GOAT, but obviously one has to look at records to decide who is the best so far of the modern era and that has to be Pete Sampras followed very closely by Roger Federer.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 04-27-2009, 05:34 PM
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Re: When did the modern era start?

We're dealing with human abstraction, you know. Change is fluid and gradual. Reality isn't divided into neat "era elements" that follow one another - we construct these to simplify our understanding of history.

The modern era is a kind of indefinite abstraction probably referring to increase of power as a result of changing technology. But this didn't really materialize in a particular year, so there's bound to be disagreement over the time most accurate to designate.

There's a number of factors to consider - the graphites themselves and large head sizes, as well as poly strings and increased control they provide. None of this materialized at once and both racquet materials and strings are constantly being altered, because they are products made to be bought. So corporations always make claims of doing something revolutionary - but exactly what they're doing and changing is ambiguous. All that we can say is that they're doing it constantly.

If I was forced to point to the period when something really changed, just visibly - by looking at matches, time-specific - I'd point to the later 80s. That's when guys not so much hit harder (I think they hit as hard even in the late 70s), but rather began to take the ball earlier and go for the lines more. Increased control, comfort, topspin, etc.

I watch Lendl and Wilander play their matches, for example, and I see them as fairly old school in terms of the way they time the ball.

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