Daily Bagel: Inside the mind of fans

Wednesday February 15th, 2012

• Behind-the-scenes video of the Sports Illustrated photo shoot for Rafael Nadal and Bar Refaeli. Is it just me or did Rafa look stressed out? You would be too if you suddenly realized that your girlfriend was going to see these pictures.

• Great new feature at Tennis.com: Steve Tignor tries to figure out the complex psychology of a tennis fan by interviewing supporters of specific players to see what makes them tick. This week: Rafael Nadal.

• Christopher Clarey on John Isner's coming of age, so to speak. "[U.S. Davis Cup captain Jim] Courier, who has called Isner 'probably the most disruptive force in the men's game,' has long been convinced that he needs to impose himself more with consistent aggression," Clarey writes. "Mission accomplished in Fribourg, but in an 11-month season, there are so many more missions to come. 'The way I played today,' Isner said Friday as he stood on the red clay, 'is the way I need to play in all of my matches.'"

• How tough is it being a tennis mom? Ask Judy Murray, Andy's mother. Support your kid too much and you're "overbearing," but take a step back when your child needs your support and you're failing your duties. "‘I was watching the press conference in the players’ lounge [after Murray lost to Roger Federer in the 2010 Australian Open final] and I could see in his face that he was devastated," Judy told the Daily Mail. "I will never forget him looking at me and saying, 'I’m so sorry, mum'. I pushed him away and said, 'Andy, don’t ever tell me you are sorry. Have you any idea how great that is for me, watching you on one of the best courts in the world, playing against the best player of all time? Your time will come, never forget that.'" Moms gotta be moms, folks.

• What happens when you rank players according to their average results at majors and the WTA Championships? You get results that are fairly consistent with how many people rank these players in their heads.

• This is great news: Alisa Kleybanova has finished chemotherapy and resumed her off-court training. • Non-tennis: If you missed it Tuesday night, or if you're confused or curious about all this "Linsanity" business, check out what the Harvard grad and Knicks guard did against the Toronto Raptors.

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