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Your visions will happen
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A lot of talk has gone on as Djokovic and Nadal close in on Federer's records, that Roger was a weak era GOAT, his records are not as impressive, etc.

And I just laugh at that.

Many times Federer has had his back to the wall, one match where if he had lost, Djoko or Rafa or both would have had a much better case for GOAT than Roger.

I fully believe that Roger still plays not just for the love of the game and the faint chance of another slam, but to bar Djoko and Rafa from overcoming his records himself. Not waiting for them to get old or the next gen to mature. To stop them himself. He does not want to end up like Sampras, declared the GOAT upon retirement but being usurped 3 times in 15 years. For Fed it might be even worse. He'd be usurped BEFORE EVEN RETIRING.

So, knowing all of this, Roger has had many performances especially this decade where he stood tall and denied at least temporarily, the erasing of his legacy.

1. 2019 WTF RR3 vs Djokovic. WTF title record on the line, YE #1 on the line, weeks at #1 in peril. Federer turned back the clock 15 years to save his billion dollar empire.

2. 2019 Wimbledon SF vs. Nadal. A Nadal victory here puts him within shouting distance. A win over Djoker and maybe we already are talking about Rafa as the GOAT. But Roger pulled out an incredible performance to keep his place in history secure. At least for now.

3. 2017 AO F vs. Nadal. The obvious one. Don't think I need to explain much more on this one.

4. 2012 Wimbledon SF vs. Djokovic. A forgotten one imo, but very important. Fed had not won a slam since AO 2010. His level was slipping and falling. If he lost this match, he may have not won a slam for 7 full seasons! Another slam for Djoker and another less for Fed. So long to the legacy if he had lost this one.

5. 2011 RG SF vs. Djokovic. Sure it was early. But if Nole wins here, and he owned Rafa that year, you could easily see Nole having won the mythical CYGS such were the heights of his level in 2011. Where would Roger be in history then? Sure Fed lost to Nadal in the finals, again, but Fed can afford if Rafa wins another RG because his records are better elsewhere.

6. 2010 WTF F vs. Nadal, another forgotten one since Fed won it going away at the end, but if Rafa finally won a WTF title? And Roger has one less? Not to mention the psychological blows.

So there we have 6 matches off the top of my head where if Fed had lost, his legacy would look very very different to what it does now. But Roger won. All 6 of them.

We will see if the trend continues in 2020.

Any other legacy saving matches I missed? Maybe Miami 2005 just to salvage some kind of mental edge with Nadal from the previous year?
 

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Federer has choked mote when his legacy was on the line, than when he saved it. So those who call Federer names are within their right to do so. Federer's GS are massively inflated. But, if you look into the details, 20 GS is not worth much.

Anyway If I were to answer the question, the entire 2017, Federer saved his legacy by winning against Nadal 4 times, bringing the h2h closer.
Also, Hamburg 07, Federer ended Nadal's 81 match winning streak on clay, including bageling him. But it mattered for naught, as he bent over to Nadal soon after in RG. Which is why I'd never consider Federer to be a good clay courter. He's an average to decent one at best. Same with Djokovic, watching them lose to Nadal at RG(except 15 where any decent clay courter would've beaten Nadal there) too many times has dented their clay resume.
 

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Good list.

His wins against Haas and delpo when he won RG can easily be added as well, he was on the brink of defeat and defeat in one of those matches = no career slam, which would obviously be a huge dent in his legacy.
 

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I fully believe that Roger still plays not just for the love of the game and the faint chance of another slam, but to bar Djoko and Rafa from overcoming his records himself. Not waiting for them to get old or the next gen to mature. To stop them himself. He does not want to end up like Sampras, declared the GOAT upon retirement but being usurped 3 times in 15 years. For Fed it might be even worse. He'd be usurped BEFORE EVEN RETIRING.
By this way of thinking we should concentrate on recent matches first of all i.e. at RG'11 Djokovic (sitting at 2 slams) didn't treaten Federer's legacy at all. Looking back (after many years) one could say Fed protected his legacy then but it wasn't the case at that time. Obviously there were matches when Fed protected his legacy (like AO'17) but OTOH he lost very important matches as well (which affected negatively his legacy). He won Wimby'19 semi but lost the final to another big rival (having had MPs) and Nadal wouldn't be favoured in the final anyway. It's hard to treat Wimby'19 as legacy protection (it would have been had he won). Same with WTF RR match - it's overrated as Djoko was still 2 matches away from clinching YE#1 (it was far from certain given his patchy form).
 

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Dull will never be GOAT as his achievements outside his favorite surface aren’t near the other 2 and he also has 0 WTF’s. You could argue that there is no GOAT and that it simply is some of the best players of all time competing which is probably the best way to look at it. Djokovic still needs some more slams but he’s got the other factors needed to be in the argument.
 

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Great list.

I would add Wimbledon 2007. People forget that Federer held off Rafa at #2 in the rankings for three years. In the fourth set in 2007, Rafa pulverised Federer, almost bagelled him. That fifth set still sends shivers up my spine, especially that backhand slice, inside-in forehand combination to break Rafa at 2-2. If Rafa had won that match, it would have taken a mighty bite out of Fed's legacy. In the end, Federer held him off for another year and went down all guns blazing in maybe the best match ever.

Otherwise:

Shanghai 2014 vs Novak
Cincinnatti 2015 vs Novak

These two victories ensured that Federer stayed in touch with Djokovic, and proved to himself and everyone that his new net-rushing attacking style could cut the mustard against the best, on good days at least. Without those victories, Novak begins to look invincible.
 

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Dull will never be GOAT as his achievements outside his favorite surface aren’t near the other 2 and he also has 0 WTF’s. You could argue that there is no GOAT and that it simply is some of the best players of all time competing which is probably the best way to look at it. Djokovic still needs some more slams but he’s got the other factors needed to be in the argument.
By the same token, Rogie has NO claim on GOAT whatsoever based on his ultra-thin clay resume.
 

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Your visions will happen
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Discussion Starter #9
Good list.

His wins against Haas and delpo when he won RG can easily be added as well, he was on the brink of defeat and defeat in one of those matches = no career slam, which would obviously be a huge dent in his legacy.
RG 09, yes, that was a big one too because Fed would never get another real chance at RG, and he knew it too, 2 huge wins over Haas and Delpo

By this way of thinking we should concentrate on recent matches first of all i.e. at RG'11 Djokovic (sitting at 2 slams) didn't treaten Federer's legacy at all. Looking back (after many years) one could say Fed protected his legacy then but it wasn't the case at that time. Obviously there were matches when Fed protected his legacy (like AO'17) but OTOH he lost very important matches as well (which affected negatively his legacy). He won Wimby'19 semi but lost the final to another big rival (having had MPs) and Nadal wouldn't be favoured in the final anyway. It's hard to treat Wimby'19 as legacy protection (it would have been had he won). Same with WTF RR match - it's overrated as Djoko was still 2 matches away from clinching YE#1 (it was far from certain given his patchy form).
Well if Fed had lost to Rafa in W 19, sure Rafa still had to beat Djoker. But it would be out of Roger's hands. He would have to sit around and wait for them to lose. He took matters into his own hands. Sure he lost to Djoko, but he could afford such a loss without losing his GOAT mantle. A win there and there is not even a discussion now probably

This upcoming AO, Fed can afford Djokovic to win another slam but CANNOT afford to have Nadal win AO. Then Rafa ties with 20, won 2 of each slam which no one other than Laver and Emerson can say, and with RG around the corner.

Great list.

I would add Wimbledon 2007. People forget that Federer held off Rafa at #2 in the rankings for three years. In the fourth set in 2007, Rafa pulverised Federer, almost bagelled him. That fifth set still sends shivers up my spine, especially that backhand slice, inside-in forehand combination to break Rafa at 2-2. If Rafa had won that match, it would have taken a mighty bite out of Fed's legacy. In the end, Federer held him off for another year and went down all guns blazing in maybe the best match ever.

Otherwise:

Shanghai 2014 vs Novak
Cincinnatti 2015 vs Novak

These two victories ensured that Federer stayed in touch with Djokovic, and proved to himself and everyone that his new net-rushing attacking style could cut the mustard against the best, on good days at least. Without those victories, Novak begins to look invincible.
That 07 final was another one, yes. Shame Rafa got hurt with the knee. I remember getting so pissed when Rafa got broken after missing 4 BP early in the 5th before Fed ran away with it.
 

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By the same token, Rogie has NO claim on GOAT whatsoever based on his ultra-thin clay resume.
Federer still had a lot of success on hard courts despite grass being his favorite surface whereas Dull has 2/3 of his slams at the FO and over half his overall titles are on clay.
 

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More crap from Rafa tards. Yawn.

Fed missed out on many, many opportunities where he would have extended things. Del Potro Match, 2003, had he won one match, he would have been the YE in 2003. All the close Djokovic battles at Wim and at the USO. Point is, Federer has won 20 slams, yes, but he also lost 10 slam finals. He's given himself more chances and opportunities than anyone else in tennis history. If he had 20 slams and only lost a few of them, I could see you making the argument, but we can speculate both ways.

What happens if he wins WIM 2008 vs Rafa? Del Potro in 2009 at the USO for six in a row? Do we even talk about Rafa? Nope. So you can't just look at things one way and not the other.
 

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Anyways, 5th set losses for Federer.

2008 WIM vs Rafa, 2009 AO vs Rafa, 2009 USO vs Del Potro, 2014 Wimbledon vs Djokovic, 2019 Wimbledon. That's 25 slams for Roger if he gets these, two vs Rafa and two vs Djokovic.
 

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One aspect to add regarding RG '11 is that Novak would have went to #1 if he had won that semis (regardless of the outcome of the final). Therefore, retrospectively, should Novak fail to return to #1 again (an unlikely but not outlandishly improbable scenario), we can say that Federer has topped and tailed his time at #1.
 

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Federer still had a lot of success on hard courts despite grass being his favorite surface whereas Dull has 2/3 of his slams at the FO and over half his overall titles are on clay.
The "Nadal is just a clay specialist" argument really needs to die. He beat the Grass and HC giant Federer for his Wimby and AO titles, and HC behemoth Djokovic for two of his US Opens. He's proven himself against the best, there's no meat to this argument.
 

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By the same token, Rogie has NO claim on GOAT whatsoever based on his ultra-thin clay resume.
So the player who has won the 2nd most matches in the history of RG has an ultra-thin clay resume? Hahahah honestly I feel so sorry for low-intelligence Nodaltards and thank the heavens that I avoided their fate.
 

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Federer still had a lot of success on hard courts despite grass being his favorite surface whereas Dull has 2/3 of his slams at the FO and over half his overall titles are on clay.
I don't expect you know how to do it. But if you run a correlation test between hard court, grass and clay slams you will find much higher correlation, i.e., much more similarity between hard court and grass, than between clay and non clay. Clay is a totally different animal. So it's much harder to break through the barrier between clay and non-clay. But judging by your account name, I think I am just wasting time here.
 

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The "Nadal is just a clay specialist" argument really needs to die. He beat the Grass and HC giant Federer for his Wimby and AO titles, and HC behemoth Djokovic for two of his US Opens. He's proven himself against the best, there's no meat to this argument.
True that Nadal is not just a clay specialist. But at the same time Federer is greater at 10 of the 14 greatest tournaments in tennis. Considering that Nadal hasn't really won any of the tournaments in which he is behind for years except USO and Madrid I don't think this will change much. It's pretty clear that Nadal is far more specialized than either Federer or Djokovic.
 

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True that Nadal is not just a clay specialist. But at the same time Federer is greater at 10 of the 14 greatest tournaments in tennis. Considering that Nadal hasn't really won any of the tournaments in which he is behind for years except USO and Madrid I don't think this will change much. It's pretty clear that Nadal is far more specialized than either Federer or Djokovic.
10 out of 14? I think just 9 out of 14. You made it like a big difference, actually they have the same number of "Big titles" based on ATP. And Nadal is definitely the most dominant on single surface.
 
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