Has this man lost the plot? In the above video you will see an interview with Andre Agassi about the fact that he hated tennis, as well as his opinion about the Fedal rivalry. Agassi was my favorite player before Roger came along. When he beat Roger in the final of Miami he was still my favorite player. In fact he was probably my favorite until he retired. I have also read his book Open. But I can’t say that I have a lot of respect for his opinion on tennis these days. Last year he said Murray would win a slam which I didn’t agree with, and we all know what happened thereafter. Now he is saying that Rafa only needs to win the US Open to be up there in GOAT contention with Roger. WTF?! I don’t think his drug habits did him well. If you listen carefully he contradicts himself in the interview and makes non-factual statements.
First we’ll get to the part where he contradicts himself. He says that Nadal would be on par with Roger if he wins the US Open because ‘more has never been the criterion’. That is not only absolutely wrong, but also a contradiction. He puts a lot of emphasis on the head-to-head, but if you go by what he says about more not being a criterion, then what does it matter that Rafa has beaten Roger more? According to his argument Roger just needed to beat Rafa on all surfaces, and then more wins does not make a difference. Roger has of course done exactly that. He has beaten Rafa on all surfaces. In fact he trails Rafa in head-to-head only on clay, which is to be expected. Now lets get to the part where he makes a statement that simply isn’t true, aside from the fact that ‘more does not matter’. He says that Rafa has a ‘dominant’ head-to-head against Roger in his prime.
Roger’s prime was from 2004-2007. During that time Rafa had a 8-6 head-to-head record against Roger. Hardly ‘dominant’. And again I must add that half of those meeting were on clay. You just can’t overlook that fact because no player is ever the GOAT on all surfaces. If you look after 2007, then Rafa dominates Roger 6-1 in head-to-head meetings, when Roger was clearly past his prime. But wait, I haven’t even gotten to the most absurd part about Agassi’s statements. If Rafa wins the US Open, then he will be on 9 slams and Roger will be on 16. That would be a difference of 7 slams, the exact difference which they currently have in head-to-heads(14-7). So according to Agassi Rafa will then have a case for being the GOAT. Lets just set aside the other achievements from both players outside of the slams for a second.
Then you come to the absurd conclusion that according to Agassi, one single match is as important as one grand slam title! Are you following? Agassi gives more or less similar importance to one tennis match as he does to a grand slam title. I mean the guy has either completely lost it, or he is jealous. I think he is indirectly trying to say that he has the calender slam and Sampras has not, therefor he is right up there with Sampras. He also has the Olympic gold and Sampras hasn’t. Smells all too much like a hidden message in there somewhere. Anyway I’m done trying to figure out what he is trying to say, because it can’t be figured out. He makes no sense, which is pretty sad for a former tennis great. The fact is the head-to-head is mostly irrelevant since they have met so much on clay, and they have also played 7 matches where Roger was already past his prime. We’ve been over this many times.
Rafa never makes it far enough on hard courts to meet Roger, while Roger always makes it far enough on clay. If anything, the Fedal head-to-head tells us that Roger is much better on his worst surface(clay) than Rafa is on his worst surface(hard). It really that simple. The people who keep pointing out the head-to-head either knows very little about tennis, or they are trolling. So what does it mean if Rafa wins the US Open if Agassi is talking nonsense? It means Roger will lead Rafa 16-9 in slams, and not until Rafa won an equal amount of slams as Roger will the head-to-head be relevant. Grand slam titles has always been the most important measure of greatness and only after that is taken into account comes all the other things. This is all so highly speculative anyway. For one I don’t think Rafa is ever winning the US Open.
His chances are very slim. He needs to stay healthy and have the luckiest draw of all time. Then he has a chance. The much better bet would be Roger winning the US Open this year, putting him on 17 slams and Rafa still on 8. It keeps it sort of interesting to think that Rafa can catch Roger in the future, but my honest opinion is that it will never happen. Roger is just a better player. I can go on and on about things like his 23 consecutive semi-finals in slams, the fact that he is the only player to win 5 or more titles of 2 different slams, or the fact that he won 3 slams a year 3 times. But that is pointless. If you haven’t gotten by now that Roger is better than Rafa you probably never will. You either get it or you don’t. Agassi clearly doesn’t, and I’ll leave it up to you to decide whether it was the drugs or the jealousy that clouded his reason.
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