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post #1 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:18 PM Thread Starter
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MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

I remember there was a thread on here where MTF voted 80-20 that Pete's serve was better than Roddick's and better than any of the current players' serves, bar Karlovic - even though several of today's players register much faster speeds. I don't agree with this (and I'm often called a Fedtard Pete-hater for this reason!) But let's look at the evidence.

I've posted links to Federer-Sampras and Federer-Roddick in Shanghai 06. A lot of people believe that Pete's disguise and placement compensates for the slower pace of his serve compared to today's big servers (Roddick, Ljubicic). I think a comparison between these two videos (or pick any Fed-Roddick video you want, even AO 07) shows that view to be a myth. Federer is able to take a full swing at a lot of Pete's first serves and hits several clean winners on first serve returns. Lleyton Hewitt did the same. Against Roddick, however, Roger simply doesn't have time to attack. He can only float a blocked return back, relying on his superior skill to win the point from there. People often talk of how Federer is able to handle Roddick's serve - but Andy usually gets a defensive, floaty response to his first serves from Roger, it's just that he can't take advantage of it. Watch the videos and see for yourself. Andy's serve has a lot more bite on it than Pete's does and draws weaker responses from Roger, even though Andy is facing a far stronger version of Roger than Pete did. Furthermore, the Andy-Roger match is on a relatively slow surface whereas Pete-Roger is on grass.

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post #2 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:19 PM Thread Starter
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

For Andy, the point generally goes downhill after he gets the floaty return. I chose Shanghai and not a grass game (which would have been a better comparison) because Andy serve-volleys a lot in that match and I wanted to compare his volleys to Pete's. And it seems pretty clear that Pete's volleys and movement are several levels above Roddick's. I don't agree that the way to play Roger is to try and dominate him. But maybe if you had a player with Roddick's serve and Pete's volleys/movement to come in and pick off the floated returns, that player would be able to cause Roger some problems, especially on grass where the big serve would get a lot of floaty blocks. In 2001 Pete's serve wasn't big enough to trouble Federer, and in 2007 Roddick's volleys aren't good enough to take advantage of his blocks. But still, Andy does often get 70%+ first serves and if he could sort his volleys out, maybe he'd be onto something.

Of course, the implication of all this that if Pete played Roger, he would come under a lot of pressure in his service games and would probably lose - even on grass. But I mean this as a thread on serves, not a Pete v Roger thread.
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post #3 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:21 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

Why don't you use the search engine and find the thread? Now the mods have to merge this thread.
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post #4 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:24 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

Great effort putting these together. Thank you.
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post #5 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:32 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

comparing roddick's serve to sampras
yeah right

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post #6 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:42 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

I think this is a way off comparison, you're watching highlights. Off course you see all the returns were Federer could take a good swing and hit a winner against Sampras. Those are great points against a serve and volleyer. He can't just float the ball because Sampras would have the easy volley. He has to take some chances. That's exactly why people want Roddick to volley. You wont see the points were Sampras had the easy volley in the highlights or the missed returns.
Roddick serves harder then Sampras, but in my opinion no way he got more bite on the serve. One of the biggest disappointments to me is that Roddcick almost never serves to the body and that could be a big weapon.

Btw did you notice the court speed at Wimbledon, i wish they speed it up again a little bit, it was just perfect back then in 2001 and what a pitty Federer doesn't serve and volley anymore.

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post #7 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 09:52 PM Thread Starter
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

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Originally Posted by madmanfool View Post
I think this is a way off comparison, you're watching highlights.
Well watch full matches if you want a better comparison. I doubt most people have the time. But I think the point stands. I can't remember Roger ever hitting clean winners off Andy's first serve in the same way he does off Pete's. The highlights point goes both ways - if Roger had hit even a single winner from Andy's first serve, that would show up in the highlights.

People just say things like "oh Roddick's serve, better than Pete's, yeah, you must be joking" without being able to back it up at all, other than with unsubstatiated claims about better placement and variety.
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post #8 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 10:09 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

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Well watch full matches if you want a better comparison. I doubt most people have the time. But I think the point stands. I can't remember Roger ever hitting clean winners off Andy's first serve in the same way he does off Pete's. The highlights point goes both ways - if Roger had hit even a single winner from Andy's first serve, that would show up in the highlights.

People just say things like "oh Roddick's serve, better than Pete's, yeah, you must be joking" without being able to back it up at all, other than with unsubstatiated claims about better placement and variety.
yeah, but Roddick is not serve and volleying all the time like Sampras, just every now and then, so he doesn't have to hit the big winners on the return. He can just float the ball in play and then beat Roddick with his eyes closed.

edit: you get a lot better comparison from this if you ask me: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktOo4CNo_H4

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Last edited by madmanfool; 01-31-2007 at 10:31 PM.
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post #9 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 10:40 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

You're on dope mate. You're comparing a 30-something year Sampras to Roddick. Find something from 94-98 then. Nobody ever served like Sampras.
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post #10 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 10:44 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

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You're on dope mate. You're comparing a 30-something year Sampras to Roddick. Find something from 94-98 then. Nobody ever served like Sampras.
You don't get the point mate. I find Pete's serve at 30 years a lot bigger then Roddick, so where does that leave the Pete from 94-98...If i can prove it for 30 year i also prove it for 25, no? mate?

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post #11 of 53 (permalink) Old 01-31-2007, 10:46 PM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

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Originally Posted by madmanfool View Post
You don't get the point mate. I find Pete's serve at 30 years a lot bigger then Roddick, so where does that leave the Pete from 94-98...If i can prove it for 30 year i also prove it for 25, no? mate?
I'm talking about the thread starter. Trying to diss Sampras' serve.
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post #12 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-01-2007, 12:54 AM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

Sampras had a ton of spin on his serve. If i'm correct, he had some of the higest rpm for any player during his era. It would be interesting to see what Roddick's service rpm is.

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I guess Roddick must be the greatest player to ever play the game.
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post #13 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-01-2007, 01:38 AM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

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Originally Posted by madmanfool View Post
yeah, but Roddick is not serve and volleying all the time like Sampras, just every now and then, so he doesn't have to hit the big winners on the return. He can just float the ball in play and then beat Roddick with his eyes closed.

edit: you get a lot better comparison from this if you ask me: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ktOo4CNo_H4
Are you comparing Roddick's return of serve to Federer's?
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post #14 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-01-2007, 01:52 AM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

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Originally Posted by GlennMirnyi View Post
You're on dope mate. You're comparing a 30-something year Sampras to Roddick. Find something from 94-98 then. Nobody ever served like Sampras.
I agree
We can't compare Sampras with someone else

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post #15 of 53 (permalink) Old 02-01-2007, 02:06 AM
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Re: MTF sacred cows: Sampras' serve

i don't know much about tennis skills, but i think, the most important thing is that pete's serves seem to be more effective and won him more matches, and if his serves were off, he still has other weapons, while in roddick's case, if his serves are off, then there is a high chance that he will lose

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