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Pete Sampras desperately wanted to be known as the greatest ever, as an athlete who was so dominant that he transcended his sport, and for a while he had the general sports media in the U.S. on his wagon. But the fact is that the Peetster never dominated tennis at a level that gave him an undisputed claim to "greatest ever" and that would put him in the same category as Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan.

a few points:

Sampras had only two years in his career, 1993 and 1994, where he was a truly dominant #1 player, and even in those years he failed to win more than 2 Slam titles.

Sampras had a very one-dimensional game after 1996, and by the end of his career, other players on the tour were openly contemptuous of his inability to play from the baseline. At Roland Garros, Sampras was just another guy in the Top 100 struggling to win a couple of rounds.

While the crown jewel of Sampy's career, his 7 Wimby titles, is nothing to sneeze at, you have to consider that out of the few occasions from 1992-2001 when he played a big serve-and-volley player who had an on day, three times he was beaten (Ivo in '92, Krajicek in '96, Feds in '01), and a fourth time (Philipoussis in '99), his opponent retired injured after winning the first set.

Two of the Peetster's USOpen victories against Agassi ('95 and '02)were due, plain and simple, to Agassi getting screwed by the idiot USTA schedulers forcing him to play late into Saturday night in his semifinal matches, while Sampy had many hours of extra rest. This was especially the case in the '95 final, when Agassi was playing far better tennis than Sampras. After beating Becker 76 76 76, 14 hours was just not enough turnaround time for Andre to win two tough best of fives. And when Sampras came up against solid returners in the '00 and '01 USO finals, what did he get? A pair of straight set thrashings.

The only reason Sampras holds the record for Slam titles is that Borg skipped the Australian Open during his 9 year period of dominance. If Borg had bothered showing up in his prime he would have won the Australian four or five times, giving him 15 or 16 Slam titles, and people would still be calling Borg the greatest ever.

In sum, Sampras carved out his place in tennis history by winning 14 GS titles. But does he have a record that is going to stand the test of time qualifying him as "greatest ever"? No way.
 

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wow... just... wow...
2002 us open. his LAST matches. all that needs to be said. he's amazing, he won the last slam he played against andre in the final and never looked back. who cares if he never won more than 2 in a year (and that he only did that twice)? how many years did chris evert win 2 or more slams?
 

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faboozadoo15 said:
how many years did chris evert win 2 or more slams?
5 :angel:
 

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vogus said:
Two of the Peetster's USOpen victories against Agassi ('95 and '02)were due, plain and simple, to Agassi getting screwed by the idiot USTA schedulers forcing him to play late into Saturday night in his semifinal matches, while Sampy had many hours of extra rest..
OR... maybe... just maybe... Pete dominated Andre head-to-head at Wimbly and USO... because... get ready for this.... here it comes... no, it's receeding... diminished beyond recognition... oh wait, it's back with a bang and there's no stopping it:

BECAUSE HE WAS A BIGGER ALL-AROUND TALENT, BOTH PHYSICALLY AND ESPECIALLY PSYCHOLOGICALLY.




Food for thought; eat up.
 

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Sorry..... But i don't he is overrated.
 

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MisterQ said:
5 :angel:
oops, my bad... i guess i just had in mind her 13 consecutive years of winning a slam... so she never won three in a year? like pete...
i guess she wasn't the best example.
 

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You guys denounce him as a troll without even really reading his posts. Pete has an almost unimpeachable slam record but that does not mean that Vogus has not brought up some thought provoking points. Indeed, Pete was only truly dominant in the years 93-95 and even then he lost twenty or so matches on the year- nowhere close to McEnroe's, Lendl's, Borg's, or Federer's best years. Pete was the best at racking up slams though, whether it was one a year or not. But in terms of peaks and dominant years he is out of any top contention. Pete's style was the most conducive to a long haul of slam achievement but he was no longer a truly dominant player by the end of 97. 96 was only saved as a year by his thrashing of Chang at the US Open. He never had the aura that the player's of the eighties, and Federer do, where a single loss can shatter their image of invincibility. He had domains like the grass of wimbledon, where people knew he was beyond reach, but also many others where even journeymen were quite comfortable in competing against him. Not so with the aforementioned players. Even if they were not pre-eminent on a surface, they were top-5 on all of them, and specialists knew they could be blown off the court regardless of the bounce or speed. And yes, folks Federer is top 5 on clay. Actually he is the #2 clay-court player in the world at the moment based on results and what have you. Coria and Gaudio don't trouble him anymore. Only Nadal does. There is a misconception that clay is somehow federer's kryptonite, and some people lose sight of how accomplished he is on the surface sans a Roland Garros win.
 

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Sampras' fault was having a boring s&v game, no personality, anti-Rafter attitude, and doing Sharapova-like runs on my TV with those braggard RBS commercials. If I could take slams away from him on those points alone I would...

However, I wish Agassi, Krajicek, et al would have stepped it up more often. The mid '90s were the pitts because of Sampras. Which is why I was watching Monica, Aranxta, Hingis, et al.
 

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Tourmalante said:
You guys denounce him as a troll without even really reading his posts.
They don't care. It's a ride on the insult bandwagon. Anyone who doesn't agree with their views are trolls.

Real trolls are really, really nasty characters who get banned almost immediately (for those of you who remember costaslam2, etc).
 

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Tourmalante said:
96 was only saved as a year by his thrashing of Chang at the US Open.
I was so badly rooting for Chang to win his 2nd Slam. This was even a better year for him than '89.

I still think of the view of his brother sitting alone, despondent, in the stadium seats long after everyone had gone.

Too bad stupid Alex couldn't take out a vomiting Sampras in that tiebreak :(
 

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Pete never had two years like Fed has had these two years. He was never as dominant as Fed has been, that is true. What Fed has done in these past two years can only be compared to a different era when winning 10+ titles was done more often by the top players such as Vilas, Nastase, Connors, Jmac, Lendl.

BUT.....

He had a different approach to things. He knew that Slams were what would cement his legacy and he concentrated on them. He wasn't out to win every tournament like Fed (so far) and Lendl.

If you want to say that the 7 time Wimbledon champion (and it could've been 8 in a row if Richard K. hadn't played an extraordinary match), 5 time US OPen Champ nad 8 time finalist, amazing totals of weeks at #1 and consecutive streaks at #1 is overrated, then go right ahead.
 

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Actually most of what was written is true and it gives a little bit of perspective. I mean duh, nobody is disputing Sampras' dominance at the slams, I mean how can you? He wasnt even dominant at remaining #1 through out the full 52 weeks. So theres certainly some truth about the issues that were brought up.
 

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Pete played his entire career with Thalysemia (did I spell that right? I think not), a blood condition that can create fatigue and lack of conditioning. The fact that he was able to achieve what he did under those circumstances is pretty awe-inspiring to me.

As for his match record, Pete said many, many, many times that he was mostly concerned with Slams and maintaining his #1 ranking, not necessarily racking up titles (which might possibly be one of the reasons Andre has more Masters titles). He did what he needed to do to achieve those two goals. What made Pete great is a combination of the way he played the game and his results, not just his results.

Would have been easier for me to respect your argument a little bit more, Vogus, if you had left out the apparently derisive nickname. Your personal problem with Mr Sampras detracts from your argument (to me anyway). :D
 
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vogus said:
Pete Sampras desperately wanted to be known as the greatest ever, as an athlete who was so dominant that he transcended his sport, and for a while he had the general sports media in the U.S. on his wagon. But the fact is that the Peetster never dominated tennis at a level that gave him an undisputed claim to "greatest ever" and that would put him in the same category as Tiger Woods and Michael Jordan.
Please point out which article you read that Pete said he desperately wanted to be known as the greatest ever, thank you.

a few points:
Sampras had only two years in his career, 1993 and 1994, where he was a truly dominant #1 player, and even in those years he failed to win more than 2 Slam titles.
In the open era, how many players win more than 2 slams titles?

Sampras had a very one-dimensional game after 1996, and by the end of his career, other players on the tour were openly contemptuous of his inability to play from the baseline.
By the end of many players career, many of them hardly able to win a match or a title, let alone a Slam.

At Roland Garros, Sampras was just another guy in the Top 100 struggling to win a couple of rounds.
A guy who struggling to win a couple of rounds managed to win a TMS title on clay and reach SF in Roland Garros. Last time I check, you need to win 5 matches to reach the SF in a GS.

While the crown jewel of Sampy's career, his 7 Wimby titles, is nothing to sneeze at, you have to consider that out of the few occasions from 1992-2001 when he played a big serve-and-volley player who had an on day, three times he was beaten (Ivo in '92, Krajicek in '96, Feds in '01), and a fourth time (Philipoussis in '99), his opponent retired injured after winning the first set.
It's all other players fault that he won 7 Wimbledon titles. And it's Pete's fault that his opponent retired after winning the first set. Last time I check, winning the first set in a GS match doesn't mean you will win the match. The latest one being James Blake won 2 sets and up a break in the 3rd set and still lost to Agassi.

Two of the Peetster's USOpen victories against Agassi ('95 and '02)were due, plain and simple, to Agassi getting screwed by the idiot USTA schedulers forcing him to play late into Saturday night in his semifinal matches, while Sampy had many hours of extra rest. This was especially the case in the '95 final, when Agassi was playing far better tennis than Sampras. After beating Becker 76 76 76, 14 hours was just not enough turnaround time for Andre to win two tough best of fives. And when Sampras came up against solid returners in the '00 and '01 USO finals, what did he get? A pair of straight set thrashings.
Why Pete lost to solid returners like Hewitt and Safin but defeat the best returner of the last decade and a half, Agassi is way beyond my limited intelligence?

And of course, Sampras losing in '01 USO was USTA's fault, he had to play 3 previous champions before he reached the final. :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

The only reason Sampras holds the record for Slam titles is that Borg skipped the Australian Open during his 9 year period of dominance. If Borg had bothered showing up in his prime he would have won the Australian four or five times, giving him 15 or 16 Slam titles, and people would still be calling Borg the greatest ever.
Yes, if XXX played tennis instead of pingpong, he would defeat Sampras in all his Slam finals. If I bothered to show up to play USO, I would easily won 4 or 5 times. There's no if or what if in real life.

If Borg winning all his Slam titles in 2 GS events is called dominance, what's Pete winning his Slam titles in 3 GS events?

In sum, Sampras carved out his place in tennis history by winning 14 GS titles. But does he have a record that is going to stand the test of time qualifying him as "greatest ever"? No way.
No, he also being #1 at the end for 6 consecutive years. Of course, you can easily forget about his other records as they are not convenient to your biased theory.
 

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Tourmalante said:
You guys denounce him as a troll without even really reading his posts. Pete has an almost unimpeachable slam record but that does not mean that Vogus has not brought up some thought provoking points. Indeed, Pete was only truly dominant in the years 93-95 and even then he lost twenty or so matches on the year- nowhere close to McEnroe's, Lendl's, Borg's, or Federer's best years. Pete was the best at racking up slams though, whether it was one a year or not. But in terms of peaks and dominant years he is out of any top contention. Pete's style was the most conducive to a long haul of slam achievement but he was no longer a truly dominant player by the end of 97. 96 was only saved as a year by his thrashing of Chang at the US Open. He never had the aura that the player's of the eighties, and Federer do, where a single loss can shatter their image of invincibility. He had domains like the grass of wimbledon, where people knew he was beyond reach, but also many others where even journeymen were quite comfortable in competing against him. Not so with the aforementioned players. Even if they were not pre-eminent on a surface, they were top-5 on all of them, and specialists knew they could be blown off the court regardless of the bounce or speed. And yes, folks Federer is top 5 on clay. Actually he is the #2 clay-court player in the world at the moment based on results and what have you. Coria and Gaudio don't trouble him anymore. Only Nadal does. There is a misconception that clay is somehow federer's kryptonite, and some people lose sight of how accomplished he is on the surface sans a Roland Garros win.
I read all the points before I called vogus a troll and I overestimate MTF posters that all of them should see the holes in most of his points.

My bad :rolleyes:
 

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The fact is this: Sampras is the only other player besides Borg to win at least 1 Slam every year for 8 consecutive years. Yes, Borg could have surpassed his total of Slams if he'd had success in one of his failed US Open finals, which would have convinced him to give Australia a shot, but ifs and maybes aren't worth talking about, only their actual achievements. This thread smacks of the recency effect to me; when Federer has finished as year-end no. 1 for 6 straight years, then we can talk. That quote from Blade Runner about the light that burns twice as bright and half as long springs to mind.
 

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And before some Fed fans jumping into defense, please note saying Pete is a great player doesn't mean Roger is not. Actually, as Pete being one of the greatest players and Roger manages to break all his records at the end of his career, only means that Roger is even a greater player but we'll see.
 

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Lee's already covered most of what I said, I see. I find it funny that all of a sudden three-quarter Slams are an essential prerequisite for every dominant no. 1 in the history of the sport, when it has only happened three times in the Open Era since Laver's Grand Slam in 1969, and even then an average of once every 15 years. Sampras won ONLY 2 a year from 93-95, you say? For shame!
 
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