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Beyond the Baseline

Video: Best points, shots of Djokovic-Nadal

The U.S. Open men's final was tennis at the highest level. Point after point, game after game, Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal battled it out in long rallies with a dazzling display of shotmaking and athleticism. While the world's top-ranked tennis players were often content to slug it out from the baseline, the riveting match required both players to reach deep into their arsenals. Here's a sampling:

1. With Djokovic up 6-5 in the third set and serving for the match, Nadal won a crucial point to start the game, shifting the momentum enough to secure a break and force the tiebreak.

2.Djokovic showed a bit (OK, a lot) of touch with this remarkable drop shot. And kudos to Nadal, who doesn't quit on any point and somehow nearly tracked this ball down.

 

3. The third game of the second set required eight deuces and lasted over 17 minutes. Nadal had Djokovic on the run, but smashed an overhead into the net to give Djokovic the break.

 

4. And since we can't get them all in, here's a montage of some other great points.

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