• Lots of you roasted me for this. I try to stay away from this question because too often it's used to denigrate women's tennis. We all know that the gulf between the top men and the top women is a vast one.
Last week's question was specifically about Serena and I think her game (and her disposition) is singularly well-suited to take on a man. Does she have top 200 talent? No way. Would she beat a decent male college player? I might be inclined to take that bet.
But let's just stress this again: The St. Louis Rams would destroy the Florida Gators. Yet the Gators draw more fans, attract bigger television audiences, generate more passion among fans, etc. There's a reason for that. Don't use the qualitative differences between men and women as justification for "hating on the WTA," as
• Honestly, "steady semifinalist" is an overreach. If
Anyway, give Davydenko his props. He's not the flashiest player or, for that matter, the flashiest guy. He tends to earn his rankings points opportunistically, winning, say, the indoor Masters Series event in Shanghai when the top players are hurt and/or mentally checked out. He's obviously best known for his alleged role in a betting scandal. Yet here he is. This question by
• Motivation? See, the Phoenecians invented this thing called money that can be accumulated and then used to purchase goods and services. Less cynically, most of us will never be the absolute best in our career. But there is virtue in clocking in, trying our best, drawing satisfaction from small triumphs and motivations from shortcomings.
• True. Though let's be clear: This will mark the first and last time Cyndi Lauper will be quoted in this space.
• Definitely Wilander. Don't look now, but he won as many majors as
• Funny story: A few years ago,
• In the U.S., pool makes tennis look like the NFL. But supposedly when you fly to the Philippines, one of the choices for in-flight entertainment is a highlight reel of the recent pool events.
• If it's not on YouTube, did it really happen? This was a point during an otherwise forgettable match at a Richmond tournament in the 1970s. Not surprising that YouTube leaves us hanging. (Still, if anyone has footage, I'm happy to upload and/or link.) Trivia: The winner of the longest point,
• Rac and Ram sounds like the name of a pool hall. But sure, anything to boost the profile of two Midwest guys.
• That, too. Good point. You are no cockeyed optimist.
On the topic of pros in other sports who can play tennis ...
• Good one. Thanks. When he wasn't
• Not sure about Garcia. But I love the "Sviiidhen" spelling. Reminds me of
• New rule: No one who uses the word "abstruse" can complain about intellectual references. Especially when the intellectual reference can be explained in a single
• For a guy who was a higher-ranked junior than del Potro and
• From a regional USTA source: "Just read your mailbag and wanted to answer your question about the [lack of tournaments in the] Pacific Northwest. I have it from a good source that a veteran promoter of Challengers is looking at adding about eight more to the schedule with the USTA. Several of the cities I have heard would include Seattle and Portland. I have heard that several factions are possibly putting in bids to buy the Indy ATP 500 event, but we likely won't hear anything until early December on that. One supposedly has a title sponsor lined up that wants to move it to their hometown."
• Venus has a book titled
• Speaking of books,
• Speaking of books, for the NASCAR fan on your Christmas list, my
Have a great week, everyone!