He'll more likely spend the time in New York with his girlfriend.
From Ted Robinson's
Mixed reviews on Roddick's San Jose win.
Interesting to hear mixed reviews of Andy Roddick
’s win in San Jose. Some feedback focused on strong play from Roddick, a sound strong backhand that he was willing to rip up the line, his potent serve (particularly in the final against Radek Stepanek) and a growing confidence as he rolled through the week (albeit against no top ranked players until the final.)
Then there were the comments that ranged from concern to contempt for Roddick’s attitude. He derailed Japanese teen Kei Nishikori
, conqueror of James Blake in the Delray final, and unloaded a verbal barrage in the process. Nishikori first claimed not to hear Roddick, then admitted an unwillingness to repeat the words publicly.
The esteemed Jon Wertheim, who shares with me a tendency to like Roddick, framed the San Jose incident in the light of recent transgressions, notably Andy’s explosion at umpire Emmanuel Joseph during his loss to Kohlschreiber in Australia, and wondered if there has been a sea change in Roddick’s demeanor. Fair question- is he being influenced by Jimmy Connors?
Here’s what I know: from an early age, Roddick understood his position as the heir to the Sampras-Agassi throne. As a sports fan, he was aware of tennis’ position in the American sports arena and went to pains to sell/promote the sport much more than himself. His triumphant media tour of New York after winning the 2003 US Open was masterful. It signaled that American tennis was set for the next 6-8 years.
Of course, we couldn’t have predicted Roger Federer. Andy could never have imagined not just Fed’s 12 Slams but also the 15-1 head-to-head dominance of Roger.
And for four years, imagine how many times Roddick has heard that line of questioning….Why is Roger so good? What can you do to stop him? Can you beat him? Is Roger the best ever? Think Roddick may tire of that?
Something else I know: Roddick has been great with young American players on tour. At Wimbledon, he has insisted on using the upper-tier of the men’s locker room, the area to which lesser players and juniors are relegated. There Andy hands with the group that has largely been his peers while the other top-ranked pros dress on the lower level. Roddick is also a thorough American sports fan, thus the concept of “talking” to an opponent may not strike him as foreign as it does many who love tennis.
Story I never forget: 2000 Davis Cup in Los Angeles. Johnny Mac, as captain, chooses 17-year-old Roddick as practice player. What Andy learned was that the role called for him to be “fresh meat,” in this case for Andre Agassi. The great Agassi punished Roddick on the court in their head-to-head practice match. And then Andre piled on a verbal assault. The cumulative effect was so fierce as to force Johnny Mac to halt the proceedings.
I have only talked briefly to Andy about that time, but I am fairly sure he has never forgotten. So when he “talks trash” to Nishikori, Andy may think it’s nothing compared to what he took from Andre. And to the treatment of umpires, well could Connors be advising Roddick that his flare-ups are nothing compared to the classics of Jimmy’s era?
The world of super models, high-stakes poker and private jets in which Roddick lives is another issue, one raised in a fair manner by Jon Wertheim. And I agree with Jon’s conclusion. If Roddick has veered in some ways, the Andy I know will return.