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View Full Version : Did the 'Great Whi .... oops sorry .... Anti-Williams Hype' hurt Kim?


Volcana
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:28 PM
That is, did being built up as 'the one to stop the Williams' have anything to do with her tightening up in the third? All credit to Serena for taking a gift when Kim gave it to her, but Kim lost that match as much as Serena won it. I have no idea if the players are insulated from the media hype or not. But Kim was almost in the position Tim Henman is in at Wimbledon. So many people making it so clear that her winning was important, for reasons that had nothing to do with Kim.

JonBcn
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:29 PM
Probably. It was at a similar level for Capriati last summer, and definitely affected her too. People should give them a break.

victory1
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:32 PM
The amount of pressure people and the media put on Kim must be so overwhelming, which prove what a great player she really is for being able to compete so well under so much pressure!

WtaTour4Ever
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:41 PM
I hate the media, life would be so much nicer if they would just stop trying to CREATE rivalries and let them evolve into their own. And stop trying to bait people all the time.

WtaTour4Ever
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:44 PM
BTW- I really wish you would stop using the term GWH ...at this point they are looking for Divine Intervention to stop Serena, this player could be orange with 4 eyes and hopping on one leg and they would support this player over Serena, in addition, hypothetically if Alex or Chanda had the game to challenge they would be cheering them over the WS in a hot second.


This isn't meant to start a fight, just my humble opinion.

Volcana
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:47 PM
WtaTour4Ever - I actually thought the current title was a concession, and one I wasn't obligated to make.

Scorch
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:50 PM
Kim's popularity in Australia seems to have exploded this year. I think that this must have weighted on her mind - the comparison of Tim Henman playing Wimbledon is right on.

But as far as Kim being the GWH (I hate that phrase too, but since it is used here...) from reading Kim's press conference transcripts it really seems as though Kim does not put too much pressure on herself with regards to V & S.

I think the pressure of being near to another grandslam final has more to do with what happened.

WtaTour4Ever
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:51 PM
Oh I'm sorry I didn't catch that. I apologize...sorry then :-)

Cybelle Darkholme
Jan 23rd, 2003, 03:52 PM
Kim is not weak minded! I can't believe anyone would suggest that Kim is so sad and sorry to let some dumb reporters influence her. No. I don't think so. Look at kim's interviews before and after the match. She knows what she did wrong. She knows that serena stepped it up and that those double faults were costly.

Jen let the media get to her. Jen spoke about being the only challenger in her interviews. Does kim do that? No, Kim talks about a bunch of players being challengers, not to beat serena or venus, but to WIN THE TITLE! Kim's mother doesnt go and say "oh I guess there will be another all williams final" when her daughter goes out.

Face it Kim doesnt need the media to hype her up as a threat to the williams sisters because kim knows shes a threat to the number one spot, no matter who holds it.

ARealVenusFan
Jan 23rd, 2003, 04:11 PM
Kim is definitely Serena's greatest physical and mental competitor, but the media (and I believe that boyfriend Lleyton)has put too much pressure on her to win. All their hopes were on her shoulders and that's just not right.

This is the same as what happened to Cappy. If they would just let these young ladies have fun and play maybe there would be parity in tennis.

Scorch
Jan 23rd, 2003, 04:15 PM
What evidence is their that Lleyton puts any pressure on Kim???

BTW there is so much comedy potential in that question!

Weevee
Jan 23rd, 2003, 04:19 PM
Kim's strategy was to play aggressive if Serena is playing well and to play defensive if Serena was makiing errors. It is a very sound strategy. In my opinion she did not choke. If Serena is not making errors there is not much that Kim or any other player can do.
KIim is a great player but let's not get crazy!!

HingisLove
Jan 23rd, 2003, 04:25 PM
Just because you cheer for kim or any other player including Hingis doesn't mean that you are anti williams.
I cheered for serena but I know(sorry wrong word) believe that Kim is strong enough too see through the media. See it's the media that are looking to find someone to beat the sisters, true fans of her and other player just want their fav to do well.
My wish for this year is that Venus will win the AO and that Marti will come back stronger than ever! Also that the media would stop insulting the girls on the tour, you don't see them try their manipulation on the mens tour. Do they really believe that the women are less intelligent and won't see through their scam.
Women tennis don't need that extra off court attention!!!

harloo
Jan 23rd, 2003, 04:47 PM
IMO, both of these ladies feel the pressure of the media.

Vee said it perfectly, "Their is a new pressure when you become #1". I think that Serena has allowed that to creep into her game. When she played at the U.S. Open semis against Lindsay she didn't feel it, but since she had put so much expectation on herself of going undefeated she couldn't execute against Kim.
Rena should just calm down and play her game and she wouldn't get into stuff like this. She won this time and I knew she wouldn't go down without a fight. However, she needs to get herself under control in these situations now. She is starting to let the pressure step into her game.

Kim is experiencing a new type of pressure. It's not something she's created, but it's something that the media has molded for her. It's the GWH syndrome. I think it's unfair and they need to stp it and let her just enjoy her game. I really do feel that in the end the pressure got to her. It was something that she couldn't shake. I feel she will learn from this slam, and I expect many close matches with her and the Williams. I say may the best lady win.

Kart
Jan 23rd, 2003, 04:52 PM
Originally posted by Volcana
WtaTour4Ever - I actually thought the current title was a concession, and one I wasn't obligated to make.

One you clearly won't make, in spite of some people here not liking it. I wonder what would happen here if everyone adopted that attitude.

***********************************************

I think that Kim actually benefited from all the attention she got. I wonder if it increased her self belief and perhaps got her a bit more motivated ? She came out in that match all set to win it and I think that's why she pushed Serena all the way. When Serena broke her in the first set I was thinking that it could have ended in a straight sets thrashing. Glad it didn't :D.

vs1
Jan 23rd, 2003, 05:52 PM
Kim is smart and tough. She doesn't buy much into the media hype. She just needs experience. GS Championships are in her near future, baring any injuries.

Kim's attitude wasn't like Jenn's at all. Jenn really showed the burden of carrying the "load" of being the Williams-stopper. I don't think Kim's attitude is like that at all. Just do your best and be gracious is probably her approach, which seems healthier anyhow, no matter the outcome.

Kim is clearly player #3. She needs to use this year (2003) to establish consistent wins against the top 10 players (she's well on her way) and hope she keeps injury free. She's obviously very dedicated and motivated...still working on those tedious arm exercises. Very good news that she's so disciplined.

Larrybid
Jan 23rd, 2003, 06:34 PM
I agree, I see no indication that Kim has bought in to the media hype, (correction: tennis industry hype - remember her own friends like Myskina were overzealous in hyping Kim's stautus as the reigning Williams stopper. This can't be laid entirely at the feet of the media).

Cappy actually beleived it was her mission to stop the Williams, and has apperently collaped under the burden. Kim seems a little stronger of mind. She's 19 - we'll see.

Dawn Marie
Jan 23rd, 2003, 07:16 PM
Imho what really hurt Kim was playing Serena. Oz Open didn't help much by giving Kim a much too easy draw. Her nerves were never tested until her big semifinal with Serena.

Personally and imho obviously the hype got to them BOTH during that match. Serena played with errors and started to sulk and Kim just got ball back and lost her nerves when serving for the match. Yes, the GWH crap that the media put out hurt Kim a bit. It won't stop her though because Kim is not weak minded like the other past GWH's.

Serena, Venus and Kim are great players.

RAA
Jan 23rd, 2003, 07:17 PM
Originally posted by Weevee
Kim's strategy was to play aggressive if Serena is playing well and to play defensive if Serena was makiing errors. It is a very sound strategy.

well, yes, but the problem is that Kim couldn't quite execute this plan. She played a sound game when serena was making errors. When Serena stepped it up (finally, just a bit in the third set) Kim did NOT play aggressively.

Which to my mind speaks to flaw in the strategy. You must go in and play your OWN game. If Kim thought she could play aggressively against Serena, she should have done this all the time from the start, then it wouldn't have been hard to turn it up and on when Serena dug in.

Volcana
Jan 23rd, 2003, 08:37 PM
Kart - as near as I can tell, that IS the prevalent attitude here

WtaTour4Ever - When I first wrote the thread, the title as 'Did the Great White Hype ....'. Then I though, most folks probably didn't see THAT movie either, why not back off a little. Hence the current title. The elimination of the word 'Hype' from the thread title may have been a mistake.

Kart
Jan 23rd, 2003, 10:59 PM
Originally posted by Volcana
Kart - as near as I can tell, that IS the prevalent attitude here


That doesn't make it right, but I'm sure you don't need me to tell you that. If you follow that road it's your choice. I may be saddened but I'm not into judgement (today anyway).

Lisbeth
Jan 23rd, 2003, 11:04 PM
Originally posted by cybelledarkholmexx
Kim is not weak minded! I can't believe anyone would suggest that Kim is so sad and sorry to let some dumb reporters influence her. No. I don't think so. Look at kim's interviews before and after the match. She knows what she did wrong. She knows that serena stepped it up and that those double faults were costly.

Jen let the media get to her. Jen spoke about being the only challenger in her interviews. Does kim do that? No, Kim talks about a bunch of players being challengers, not to beat serena or venus, but to WIN THE TITLE! Kim's mother doesnt go and say "oh I guess there will be another all williams final" when her daughter goes out.

Face it Kim doesnt need the media to hype her up as a threat to the williams sisters because kim knows shes a threat to the number one spot, no matter who holds it.

Very well said. I think it was a combination of general pressure on Kim (she is nowhere near as experienced when it comes to this stage of a tournament) and just Serena rising to her best level.

I don't think Kim lets the media get to her, or anyone really.

disposablehero
Jan 24th, 2003, 12:31 AM
It had absolutely nothing to do with it. I doubt if Kim seriously cares whether or not anyone wants her to stop the Williams.

What affected her was being 2 wins from a Slam title, with the tougher opponent playing hurt and down 2 breaks in the 3rd. The enormity of her personal opportunity froze her.

Informative
Jan 24th, 2003, 01:19 AM
I'm sure all the anti-Williams hype hurt Kim in the end. There was enough pressure playing and then serving for the match of a GS final and #1 player of the world staring at you across the net without all the foolishness about "taking down a Williams" swirling in the atmosphere. It's too bad too because while i wanted Serena to pull off the impossible (while thinking at the same time that she had absolutely no chance of doing so after falling behind 1-5 in the third set), I feel sorry for Kim whom I and many other people have enormous respect and admiration for. Not only is she a great player but she is one of the kindest and most mature people on the entire tour. I'm glad that she and Serena are friends.

BTW: There's been a lot of ill-informed speculation on this board and elsewhere as to the nefarious historical origins of the term/expression "Great White Hope" or GWH. The term didn't originate as the title of either a play (which broke records on Broadway in 1968 and starred Tony Award performances by both the great James Earl Jones and his co-star Jane Alexander, both of whom starred again in the Acdemy Award nominated flick in 1970) or a movie. Nor is it an expression that began with African Americans. The term was invented by famed white novelist and journalist Jack London who wrote a viciously racist editorial in the New York Times in 1909 demanding and pleading with former white heavyweight champion, Jack Jeffries, to come out of retirement and defeat the new black heavyweight champion, the legendary Jack Johnson, in the "name of white supremacy" (London's words). London declared that white Americans needed a "great white hope" to once again reaffirm the racial superiority of whites over blacks and to permanently wipe that "golden smile off of that ******'s (Johnson's) face." I could go on in more detail about London's infamous tirade but you get the point. A national clamour ensued after London's editorial with Jeffries being literally besieged with demands and fervent requests by thousands of people and the white media who immediately endorsed London's editorial that he perform the task of being a "great white hope" for the "honor and supreme dignity of the white race." Pretty crude, huh? Anyway a year late Jeffries did fight Johnson in a championship fight on July 4, 1910. after Jack Johnson absolutely annihilated Jeffries in the title bout, whites became so angry in the aftermath of Johnson's victory that they initiated race riots in over 25 major cities and over 10 black people were killed by whites via lynchings, gunshots, and beatings throughout the country as a result of cheering for or openly supporting Johnson's triumph. Immediately afterward the federal government seized the filmed account of the bout (the fight was filmed in hopes of showing Jeffries defeating Johnson to a national audience), and a federal law was actually passed declaring it illegal to show or distribute fight films across state lines in the United States (the law lasted until the late 1930s when it was declared unconstitutional by the Supreme Court). Incredible, but true. Jack Johnson went on to remain champion for five more years before being run out the country on trumped up charges only to return in 1915 after making a deal with federal authorities to throw a championship fight to another white fighter named Jess Willard in exchange from immunity from prosecution. Johnson went on to write four books (Johnson was a brilliant intellect in addition to boxer) and died in 1946 at the age of 68. He latere of course became one of Muhammad Ali's greatest idols (along with Sugar Ray Robinson). Not so ironically the "great white hope" slogan began to dramatically reappear in public during Ali's legendary ascension as champion in the 1960s and '70s. By then the GWH phrase was being used by whites and blacks alike as both a racist banner and call to arms as well as a satirical, sarcastic putdown of white athletes who are asked to be "great white hopes" by the white public to defeat a black champion in any particular athletic competition. To acknowledge only one recent example, basketball star Larry Bird was widely perceived by many people--white and black alike-- during the 1980s as a "Great White Hope." Of course there have been many others over the years. America has a very peculiar, complex, and tragic racial history, doesn't it? (Postscript: Jack London has many streets named after him throughout the United States and is widely considered one of the major American writers of his era. London always maintained until his death that he was a "white supremacist and proud of it."

disposablehero
Jan 24th, 2003, 01:37 AM
Informative, I've posted the Jack Johnson story numerous times. What makes you think people will remember this time? BTW, the white guy was named Jim Jeffries.

anton
Jan 24th, 2003, 01:40 AM
serena stopped making errors. that is what hurt kim.

2284
Jan 24th, 2003, 01:46 AM
yeah, that's true. It seems that Kim's game plan relies on Serena's errors...and Kim''s 2 DFs didn't help

banana
Jan 24th, 2003, 05:02 AM
if two players are evenly matched like serena and kim then u can't alwayz play to ur strengths, u have to play too ur opponents weakeness aswell especially with the risk of dovetailing