How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract? - TennisForum.com

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post #1 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 05:09 AM Thread Starter
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How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

Back in the late 1980's, Navratilova used the exact same Dunlop racket Steffi used in an effort to keep up with Steffi, except Navratilova painted it and put her MN initials on the strings as if no one would notice. I want to say she did this for 2 years. Anyone else remember the big stink about it? Pam Shriver, are you out there?

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post #2 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 11:25 AM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

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Originally Posted by SelesFan70 View Post
Back in the late 1980's, Navratilova used the exact same Dunlop racket Steffi used in an effort to keep up with Steffi, except Navratilova painted it and put her MN initials on the strings as if no one would notice. I want to say she did this for 2 years. Anyone else remember the big stink about it? Pam Shriver, are you out there?
Who cares ? it's not your and our problem

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post #3 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 12:12 PM Thread Starter
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

I was watching old videos of Navratilova and Graf and just thought it was a serious act of desperation that Martina did this.

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post #4 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 02:51 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

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I was watching old videos of Navratilova and Graf and just thought it was a serious act of desperation that Martina did this
Why would it be a serious act of desperation? Tennis players, first and foremost, usually do what they think is in their best interest. It's a trait they all share in common. If Martina was switching racquets in an effort to help her game at least she was trying something. This is no different in my view than Evert switching from wood to metal or Steffi trying out two handed backhands at one point during her rough patch in the early 90s.

Contractual disputes are hardly unique to Martina either. Monica Seles threw Nick Bolliteri (spelling?) under the bus in 1990 and Steffi had gobs of representaion issues at one point. For all we know Martina asked Yonex to make changes to her racquet and they couldn't or wouldn't.

Details would be nice.
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post #5 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 05:38 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

She used the Dunlop racquet only in 1987 and put the Yonex sign in it not her initials,
she did it quite in the open, I saw it done before matches.

In 1988 she played with a white Yonex racquet RQ180 and was back with them. Martina played with Yonex from 1982 before that it was only known as a badminton branch, she was the player who made Yonex big with their tennis racquets. She did more for them them then they did for her, she once said that Monica Seles as a coming player did get a lot more then she who made the branch big.

How ironic that a Selesfan brings this up. If it was a scam it is only a very little one. Yonex should be paying Martina to this day for what she did for them.
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post #6 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 06:53 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

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She used the Dunlop racquet only in 1987 and put the Yonex sign in it not her initials,
she did it quite in the open, I saw it done before matches.
Did she ever give a reason Wimbledon? Was there something she liked about the Dunlop racquet?
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post #7 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 7th, 2010, 08:25 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

The premise of this thread assumes a lot, i.e., that Navratilova actually violated her contract.

Billie Jean King also played with Yonex in 1982.
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post #8 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 8th, 2010, 06:43 AM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

When Navratilova switched to the Dunlop in 1987, Yonex terminated their contract with her.

She played with the Dunlop through Wimbledon 1988, but they were unwilling to offer her a contract. She debuted her Yonex RQ180 on tour in Montreal at the Canadian Open that summer and re-signed with Yonex shortly thereafter.
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post #9 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 8th, 2010, 11:37 AM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

Terminating a contract does not imply that the other party violated the contract.
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post #10 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 8th, 2010, 12:49 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

Navratilova was playing with Yonex before 1982, she switched to their graphite that year but had been playing with their wood racquet at least since 1980, if not 1979. She was not the only player that played with them either, BJK was playing with them at least as early as '79 so perhaps we shouldn't get so carried away on Navratilova "making" Yonex, since BJK was a bigger star than Martina until the early '80s.

That's what she said!!!
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post #11 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 9th, 2010, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

There's a YouTube video of Steffi and Martina at Wimbledon 1987, and NBC's Dick Enberg brings it up...Bud Collins intimated it wasn't making her current sponsor (Yonex at the time) too happy. For me, it was just very bizarre.

Besides that, I just find it amazing that a champion like Martina put so much emphasis on her racket. Play with what got ya there!

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post #12 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 9th, 2010, 11:20 AM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

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Originally Posted by SelesFan70 View Post
There's a YouTube video of Steffi and Martina at Wimbledon 1987, and NBC's Dick Enberg brings it up...Bud Collins intimated it wasn't making her current sponsor (Yonex at the time) too happy. For me, it was just very bizarre.

Besides that, I just find it amazing that a champion like Martina put so much emphasis on her racket. Play with what got ya there!
I recall reading somewhere she was a bit paranoid that the Dunlop gave Steffi something Martina's racket didnt, some hidden advantage. So she switched to it briefly just to get the idea out of her mind that Graf had an equipment advantage. Might seem silly now, but when you've got the thought in your head, better to do whatever to get rid of the irritant than go on court with it bugging you..

Of even more significance, there's this little gap in Graf's resume the size of the hole in the ozone layer: It's called Monica Seles. Was Graf the best female player of all time? She wasn't even the best in the heart of her career.
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post #13 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 9th, 2010, 10:25 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

I spent 20 years packing Lucky Strikes into my Chesterfield boxes, so I know where Martina is coming from.

Whitney Houston and her receipts:

http://www.tennisforum.com/showthrea...17447&page=324
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post #14 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 10th, 2010, 06:51 AM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

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Originally Posted by SelesFan70 View Post
Back in the late 1980's, Navratilova used the exact same Dunlop racket Steffi used in an effort to keep up with Steffi, except Navratilova painted it and put her MN initials on the strings as if no one would notice. I want to say she did this for 2 years. Anyone else remember the big stink about it? Pam Shriver, are you out there?
It wasn't a big stink. Not many cared about it then, and not many care about it now.

Pam Shriver: What is your worst memory of The US Open?
Martina Navratilova: Losing to you,bitch
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post #15 of 28 (permalink) Old Dec 10th, 2010, 07:50 PM
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Re: How Long Did Navratilova Violate Her Yonex Contract?

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It wasn't a big stink. Not many cared about it then, and not many care about it now.
It was a big deal at the time, primarily because Martina came off of one of her most dominant years ever on the tour (1986) to not winning a title until July of the following year. It was a huge turn around and her switching racquet's in violation of her endorsement contract was seen as an act of desperation to reclaim the form she seemingly lost overnight.

That's what she said!!!
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