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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:31 AM   #1
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Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

I'm consistently seeing posters (and now tennis players) assert that Serena is the greatest of all time, not Graf.

I'm wondering--in what empirical data as of this moment in time is Serena greater than Graf in terms of achievements? Or is it simply a peak versus peak hypothetical that she's greater?
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:36 AM   #2
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

In before the stabbing reference

In all seriousness I personally find it hard to pick between the two, I might give Steffi the edge because of 88 but I personally think its hard to pick one.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:43 AM   #3
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

Given the increased global competitiveness of the sport and the greater strain the modern game puts on the women's bodies, I don't think Graf-like achievements are possible anymore. Just my two cents.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:43 AM   #4
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

Steffi has the numbers for now, but Serena is seen to have the best peak of any woman.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:46 AM   #5
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

I believe Serena wins the peak vs. peak debate. As has been stated by many posters and pundits-when at her best she has no weakness. There are few other players, including Graf (backhand) that you could say that about. Also she is adding to her legacy everyday now with this high level of play in the twilight of her career. The second French title 11 years after the first also gives her a much stronger argument for GOAT than she had prior (winning her weakest slam in her twilight years). Also, while it's unlikely, she *could* equal or beat Graf in slams. That rather unfortunately is the only shot she's got at beating Graf empirically, and it is a BIG ask to win 6+ slams past 31.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:48 AM   #6
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

Neither. Martina Nav.........
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 01:57 AM   #7
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

Graf's backhand was not a weakness, certainly no more than Serena's footwork.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:02 AM   #8
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

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Originally Posted by blackandblue View Post
Given the increased global competitiveness of the sport and the greater strain the modern game puts on the women's bodies, I don't think Graf-like achievements are possible anymore. Just my two cents.
Regardless of who is at Graf's heel, Seles stabbing is a serious elephant in the room when talking about Graf's record.


The trouble with this debate is that appearing to argue on the behalf of a particular player (challenging Seffi's record) often poisoned the debate, taking that element out makes for a better debate.


Let's not forget, Seles had the momentum when this happened. She had just won USO and AO, looking forward to RG.
Imagine Martina Nav the victim of a stabbing at the height of her rivalry with Chris Every.
I can't even think how many more titles Chrissy would have won, since they in so many finals
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:04 AM   #9
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

It comes down to numbers and we will need to wait a few more years to see if that happens for Serena. But if the likes of McEnroe says it, well it is has got to be worth something.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:09 AM   #10
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

Graf is GOAT, enough said. Had a graceful game worthy of the title too.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:13 AM   #11
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

Quote:
Originally Posted by tennisbum79 View Post
Regardless of who is at Graf's heel, Seles stabbing is a serious elephant in the room when talking about Graf's record.

Let's not forget, Seles had the momentum when this happened. She had just won USO and AO, looking forward to RG.
Imagine Martina Nav the victim of a stabbing at the height of her rivalry with Chris Every.
I can't even think how many more titles Chrissy would have won, since they in so many finals
Ok, but Maria had momentum against Serena in 2004 which amounted to nothing. In theory the same could have happened with Seles/Graf. Coming up with theories and what ifs is ridiculous. The facts are what they are, Steffi has her slams and her golden slam which has no connection whatsoever with Monica.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:20 AM   #12
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

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Originally Posted by MB. View Post
I'm wondering--in what empirical data as of this moment in time is Serena greater than Graf in terms of achievements?
At the current time, in terms of achievements, there isn't any. Although that could certainly change, but it's a long shot.

But remember that Court has better numbers than Graf in every area, except total weeks ranked number one. Which is something that really highlights how difficult it is to compare eras, since the computer rankings began in the mid-70s.

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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:22 AM   #13
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

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Originally Posted by KournikovaFan91 View Post
Ok, but Maria had momentum against Serena in 2004 which amounted to nothing. In theory the same could have happened with Seles/Graf. Coming up with theories and what ifs is ridiculous. The facts are what they are, Steffi has her slams and her golden slam which has no connection whatsoever with Monica.
Maria example is weak one. That was her first GS.
The example of Martina Nav, is the most alike parallel to Monica's.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:24 AM   #14
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

And YEC, so she beat Serena in 2 big event finals in 2004.
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Old Jul 1st, 2013, 02:25 AM   #15
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Re: Serena and Graf and the GOAT Debate

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And YEC, so she beat Serena in 2 big event finals in 2004.
She beat a Serena who literally couldn't serve in 3 sets. Let's be real.
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