Daily Bagel: Bill Clinton almost jinxed Serena Williams in U.S. Open final

Monday September 9th, 2013


The Daily Bagel is your dose of the interesting reporting, writing and quipping from around the Internet.

• Video: Fun ESPN video recapping some of the best of the U.S. Open hijinks.

• How Bill Clinton almost cursed Serena Williams during the U.S. Open final.

• As The Changeover proves, Williams' match point celebration was the stuff GIFs are made for.

• "Rafael Nadal is the Leonardo da Vinci of Tennis" -- The Atlantic on the most underrated aspect of Nadal's game: his brain.

• A look at Novak Djokovic's new hire, Wojtek Fibak. Is he the new Ivan Lendl to Djokovic's Andy Murray?

• Steve Tignor reacts to the reactions to Roger Federer's slump.

I’ll finish by saying that while this was Federer’s first loss before the semifinals of the U.S. Open since 2003, it wasn't the first time we've talked of his descent from heaven to earth. In 2008, he had his string of five straight Wimbledon titles, and four straight years at No. 1, snapped by Rafael Nadal. At the Open that year, he fought through a long fourth-round match with Igor Andreev and was emotional in victory throughout the two weeks. Afterward, I wrote about the 27-year-old Federer, “He showed us the effort that has always been there, just beneath the surface mirage of his effortlessness.” I speculated that seeing Federer fight to win would be the fun part of watching him in the future.

In other words, the man has been “human” for years. Federer has always been an athlete, not an artist. He’s always won because he’s a good competitor, not because he makes competing look easy. He shouldn’t have needed to start losing for us to appreciate that.

• In case you missed it, here's Williams' fiery double "Come on!" during her semifinal win over Li Na.

• Apparently Murray is cursed by a certain British sportswriter.

• The dramatic five-setter between Djokovic and Stanislas Wawrinka brought the U.S. Open to life. Finally.

• Vandals destroyed a sand sculpture of Murray. I guess he's back to being Scottish.

• Marion Bartoli has asked the All England Club if she can play a private doubles event there.

• The USTA is flush with cash. Good luck getting the association to admit it.

• Jason Gay of The Wall Street Journal sits down with Rod Laver to discuss the modern game.

• The ATP catches up with Mario Ancic, who is studying at Columbia Law School and was on the grounds to watch two young Croats win the junior titles.

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