What the future holds
PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) -- The United States was savoring the moment. Now, whether the team's victory over Russia in the Davis Cup has any kind of impact on American tennis remains to be seen.
"What it does on a bigger level, you know, you hope it has some effect," Davis Cup captain Patrick McEnroe said. "But to be perfectly honest, that's sort of out of our control. But I think we've done our part. I think the guys have done their part."
The U.S. team -- made up of sixth-ranked Andy Roddick, 13th-ranked James Blake and the top-ranked doubles team of Bob and Mike Bryan -- defeated defending champion Russia 4-1 to reclaim the Davis Cup for the first time since 1995.
The Russians included fourth-ranked Nikolay Davydenko, who is under investigation into unusual betting patterns during a match he played in August, as well as Dmitry Tursunov, Mikhail Youzhny and Igor Andreev.
The once-dominant United States had not won the Davis Cup in 12 years, the longest span without an American victory. Pete Sampras last led the team to victory over Russia on clay in Moscow.
The victory on the hard court at Portland Memorial Coliseum gave the United States its 32nd title in the international team tennis competition, going back to 1900.
On Friday, Roddick defeated Tursunov 6-4, 6-4, 6-2 in the opening match and Blake outlasted Youzhny 6-3, 7-6 (4), 6-7 (3), 7-6 (3) to give the United States a 2-0 advantage going into the doubles match.
The Bryans defeated the Russian duo of Andreev and Davydenko 7-6 (4), 6-4, 6-2 on Saturday to give the Americans an insurmountable 3-0 advantage in the Davis Cup final.
While the title was already decided, the teams played reverse singles on Sunday for the final tally.
The first match was supposed to be between Roddick and Youzhny, but the captains for Russia and the United States each made substitutions beforehand.
Andreev gave the Russians their only win in the final by defeating Bob Bryan 6-3, 7-6 (4). In the second match, Blake defeated Tursunov 1-6, 6-3, 7-5.
When he was 10 years old, Roddick watched the United States -- a team that included Andre Agassi, Jim Courier, Pete Sampras and John McEnroe -- defeat Switzerland in the 1992 Davis Cup final in Fort Worth, Texas.
That was the last time the United States hosted a Davis Cup final. And it served as inspiration for Roddick.
"For us to have our moment, I feel like we really do deserve it," he said. "We've been the ultimate team, and it's just been an honor to be a part of that."
Tennis overall this season has been clouded by allegations of gambling and match-fixing.
Davydenko is at the center of an investigation into unusual betting patterns during a loss to Martin Vassallo Arguello of Argentina at a match in Poland.
Betfair, an online gambling company, voided all bets on the match after unusually large amounts were wagered on the lowly ranked Argentine throughout the contest, even after he lost the first set 6-1. Davydenko retired with an injury in the third.
Davydenko denies wrongdoing.
Earlier this month, Italian player Alessio Di Mauro was handed a nine-month suspension and fined $60,000 for online betting on matches.
Di Mauro has said he will appeal, calling the punishment too severe because he did not attempt to affect any results and did not wager on his own matches.
Additionally, a new ATP rule requires players notify officials within 48 hours if they hear any information about gambling or match-fixing. The measure was approved during a three-day ATP board meeting at the season-ending Masters Cup in Shanghai.
Davydenko said that he could use a break.
"It is a relief for me that the season's over and that I remained fourth in the rankings, and I'm not going to hear anything from the press in all of December because I'll be in Thailand, where they can't get at me," Davydenko said.
After it was all over, Patrick McEnroe noted that Sampras had text-messaged a congratulations to the whole U.S. team. Defending the title next year, and what it means in the big picture as far as the United States is concerned, was kind of an afterthought at that point.
"With these guys, as I've said, the journey's been great. We've won this. It's in the books," McEnroe said. "Our name's going to be on the Cup, that's not going to change."