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Old Mar 25th, 2007, 07:14 PM   #301
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Originally Posted by trivfun View Post
I think people international (particularly in Asia) liked her looks but was too homely white American in public.
But Triv, you make my point for me -- that's who Chris WAS! She didn't have the facial features of Shriek or Kourny or Dementieva or Harkelroad (to give examples from today's players)! She was the American "girl next door!" Which translates to "average - nothing spectacular."

In my opinion, Chris took average and made it special and appealing! Many guys had crushes on her -- and I don't think it was just white American guys from what I read on the net.

I always admired her for becoming a sex symbol, dispite only having "girl next door looks," by emphasizing style over God given features like a perfect nose and mouth and eyes, that she quite honestly was not given. She knew how to dress nicely and carried herself with class. When she lost weight and went with Ellessee clothing, no one looked better than Chrissie. She was attractive in her own way.

Now that her rivals (for love as well as tennis) are middle aged and fading from gorgeous beauties to handsome, Chris seems better looking than most of the others because she was always "handsome" (which I think hurt her when she was young) and has aged well, in addition to remaining a shining example of good health. Whereas others have gained weight, etc.

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I feel that she married John Lloyd so the British public would stop criticizing her. I feel that she didn't want to improve her power of her serve because it was too manly to do so. She wanted to win as a feminine as possible. I for one didn't think that her looks were marketed for me but for somebody else. I thought it was a bit in your face that I wanted it gone during the 1970's and 1980's.
I think that Chris married John Lloyd because she honestly thought she loved him (she was only 24) and she was lonely. He was great looking, models were after him, so I'm sure it fed her ego to have this great looking guy fall for her. Especially after Jimmy continually dumped her for models, actresses, etc. Also, John was someone that she could quite honestly (in my opinion) control! Jimmy Connors sent her emotionally into a whirlwind, whereas John would say, "Whatever you want lovey..."

Unfortunately for John, Chris likes spice and individuality and manliness. When John refused to learn to drive for so long, I was surprised that she married him!! Especially living here in Los Angeles (I live here - I know) where its difficult to get around if you can't drive or have no car.

She must have felt really annoyed at having to take him everywhere! So it was bound to fail eventually. But the experience seems to have been good for John in particular. He seemed to learn to become more independent from being with Chris.

As for her serve -- who knows! Part of me thinks that Chris was hampered by thinking of herself as less athletically inclined and slow. Tony Trabert once said that if Chris could get some spring in her legs during her service motion, that she could really pop it. But Chris remained stiff in the legs and back.

Also, she was sort of old (for a player) when she began to change her body and game dramatically. She started at what -- 28 to build up her body through weights and fitness, and added a better volley game, plus better all court coverage to her game? Even Billie Jean once commented on how amazed she was that Chris was able to change to much so late an age (for an athlete). Chris did add the "twist serve," but she never was able to add spring in her service delivery like Martina or Steffi. I believe that she wanted to though.

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As for the Williams sisters, they come across for everybody to look. They don't market to anyone but themselves and everybody in the world is eating it up. Though, they could be different in private.
Don't forget that when Chris first came on the scene 36 years ago when women athletes didn't have the marketability that they have now. It was a totally different time for the way women as a whole thought of ourselves. In one of the documentaries about Chris, her IMG agent talks about Chris was really the first to be marketed in a major way being a career woman and athlete.

Now, people look to cutting edge WOMEN and athletes to market! Serena and Venus are considered cutting edge and they're women, and quite honestly there is more opportunities for black athletes and other people of color and ethnicities than there were 30 and 40 years ago.

Back in the 1980's Zina (who at one point was number 4 in the world) couldn't even get a clothing or shoe contract. Today, companies want to cross market to all people and nations, and Serena (especially) and Venus came along challenging EACH OTHER for grand slams and took advantage of the coverage that both being so unbelievably talented brought to them. Plus people of color are now hot to market.

I hate to say it, but Chris was a young girl in the days of Twiggy and European looks and fashion, and she was no Susan Dey (who was the cute all American sister next door)! That anorexic figure that everyone wanted didn't begin with models in the 2000's. It began with Twiggy in the 60's, and that was the body image that most girls of my era desired. No hips, small breast, thin, with a straight hair and a perfect nose and lips. Can we say Michelle Phillips.

This body image may still have its place in the design world, but with the hip hop generation and more exposure to international beauties and entertainment (such as Bollywood, asian movies, and latin culture), modern culture has generated more exposure and opportunity for people of color to strut that bootylicious brick house shape of Serena's (also J-Lo and Ashwarya don't forget Missy Elliott, along with a host of rappers and hip hop singers!).

In the 70's, the only people paying tribute to the female "Brick House" were the Commodores (who had a number one record by that title). Zina Garrison WISHES the brick house had been acceptable as high beauty then.

It wasn't the right time, but it is now.
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Old Mar 26th, 2007, 02:33 AM   #302
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Originally Posted by trivfun View Post
Here is a youtube clip of tennis fundamentals from Jimmy Connors listen to Chris!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ddqJI...elated&search=
poor john lloyd!!!!! he looks like a slow-moving & balding wreck...

good comments from the as-always gorgeous CE about placement being as important as power in creating an effective, controlling service.
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Old Mar 26th, 2007, 04:29 PM   #303
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Originally Posted by OrdinaryfoolisNJ View Post
I have this theory that what made Chris a tough champion tennis player was how she dealt with her greatest insecurity: feelings early on of not being as pretty or as personally interesting as her peers and even siblings while growing up in South Florida.

Where Chris was recognized by her parents as being determined (like her namesake grandmother), it was Jeanne Evert who was called "vivacious and pretty" (like her mom). Or Laurie Fleming that attracted the boys at Holiday Park (remember Chris' comment in her autobio that Laurie "even married my first boyfriend!"). The younger siblings were good looking, charming, open, and rebellious! Even Drew, while having a personality every bit as withdrawn as Chris, was noticed as he dressed up and played pretend priest on their homemade altar (which had to tickle their super religious dad).

Where did that leave Chris who already thought of herself as plain and shy? According to Chris' autobio, it left her separate and seeking individuality and solace in her own imagination. And winning! The winning more than anything allowed her to attain some form of individuality and indeed sense of specialness (and dare I write revenge?) in her younger years.

Although all of Chris' siblings became competative juniors, none had that extra drive (or personal need) that formed Chris' championship personality. I don't think that Jimmy Evert so much "made" Chris a champion, as she herself discovered this unique personal drive fueled by trying to purge loneliness and separateness while she hit 1000s of tennis balls year after year.

Chris once commented that as a teen that it was important for her to never lose to Laurie Fleming or Jeanne (and she didn't like losing to her brothers either in practice). And this spilled over to later friendships with friends like Kris Kemmer. Chris couldn't be close to anyone who was a serious threat to winning.

Its why Billie Jean saw Chris as running, "hot and cold" in their friendship, and why Chris cut Martina out of her inner circle when she first showed signs of being a threat. What few got (in my opinion) is that winning was what Chris needed to validate herself and to feel good about who she was in the moment (even if it wasn't enough as she grew older and wiser).

It was "negative" energy (using that word from the 1989 SI interview with Chris) that fueled her early personality and tennis success to be sure, but there was a kind of revenge for "the rest of us girls" that the average but mentally tough girl was the best! Was feared! Could come back strong against seemingly debilatating odds, and could ultimately even break away from the expectations set out by family and religion (I personally got a kick out of sweet shy little Chrissie falling in love with bad boy finger in the air cursing and taunting Jimmy Connors!!!!)! She was and remains a tough girl.

What's especially interesting to me now is how much Chris has changed since her retirement. She's still a tough customer, but now she's also very outwardly engaging, easy going expressing an opinion, and who can resist her completely engaging head thrown back laugh! Who woulda imagined this new Chris in say 1973, 74, 75, 76, 77, 78...even in the 80s! !!!

Recently in discussing the Evert/Norman relationship, a reporter unkindly referred to Greg as trading in his old "cadillac" (Laura) for a nice "porsche" (Evert). I couldn't help thinking about how true (although unkind) this analogy is, AND how much Chris must love how the tables have turned!

Chris, the girl who was not the prettiest or thought of as Miss Personality, has totally caught up with her perceived rivals now that they're competing on the middled aged playing field!

Evert is extremely fit (a writer rececently commented on how she's fitter at age 52 than at 22), attractive, and confident as she ages (with the help of a little cosmetic work -- but nothing too noticable). And while she may not still be as competative in her dotage as Martina, she can still play an entertaining game on the fundraiser circuit!

Patty Connors may have been the hot sexy Playboy centerfold model that was the envy of some watching ex fiance Jimmy Connors back in the 70's, but Chris has caught up and morphed into a women that many a much younger women would not only love to be but certainly to emulate!

I love this post. I agree with pretty much everything in it. Since I was a preteen and teenager during the latter part of Chris' career, I didn't have the perspective needed to see through Chris' armor. I believed the "Chris America" imaged placed on her and almost resented seeing someone seemingly have it so easy.

I have often talked about why I picked the favorites that I did. I didn't know it back then and only recognized it years later when I started examining some of the people that I chose to make a part of my life. But I guess I always needed a project. I needed to see someone overcome something and fight the odds, even against public perception.

Back then, there was no way for me to know that Chris was a project in and of herself. She was much more like me than I could have ever imagined. I love stories and examples of redemption. I just didn't know Chris needed redeeming in some ways.

But I got some of these same impressions reading her autobio, her book with John, and rereading old articles in the last few years. I see her in a much different and more pleasing light than I did back then.

Not suggesting that any of you are older than me, although I know that some are. But did you guys see this while Chris was playing? Because for me, it would have affected how I watched her play certain matches, particularly against Tracy.
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Old Mar 26th, 2007, 11:44 PM   #304
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Originally Posted by HanaFanGA View Post
I love this post.
Thanks!

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But did you guys see this while Chris was playing? Because for me, it would have affected how I watched her play certain matches, particularly against Tracy.
I was really young when I first became a CE fan, but I did pick up on a few things even then.

Not to the extent that I do now with more information of course, but I noticed Evonne being portrayed as the free flowing cute girl and Chris as the dour and unemotional (boring?) one. When I learned more of Jimmy Connors, I knew that there was more to Chris than what was written if she attracted his attention!

I also remember reading back in the early 70's the comments about Jeanne Evert being the "better looking" Evert girls sibling, and how Jeanne was also more emotional and open. True or not, I thought the comments were kind of mean (I was only a young teen myself, as I'm 5 years younger than Chris).

When I started to get a true inkling of the vulnerable person underneath the ice maiden facade was when Jimmy Connors brought that actress to Wimbledon in 1975. I remember feeling really badly for her, and even though Chris moved on to dating some hot guys herself, clearly she still liked Jimmy as he moved from cute actress to beauty queen. I remember an article back then (from an SI in 76?) commenting on Chris' hurt feelings and bad reactions to Jimmy's hot new girlfriends.

But like you, the pieces really started to come together when I read Evert's autobio (which is really excellent in my opinion - but there needs to be a follow up in the next ten years as Chris has grown sooo very much since then). I was touched by her description of the family car with the hole in the floorboard, and her embarassment about how loud it was. Also, the part about her being a day dreamer living in her own imagination, and worrying that Gloria Connors would steal her dad away from her mom. Chris hiding in the ball box so afraid of what another parent would tell her dad about a junior match she played when she was still such a little girl.

Finally, the 1989 Sports Illustrated article by Curry Kirkpatrick was really an eye opener, and had me reconsider a lot of what I had read over the years. Especially Chris' comments when she was with Lloyd about always searching for something. Wanting peace (which seemed to elude her). I remember an article where she mentioned searching for something or wondering if there was more, and she said that John kept tellling her that there wasn't anything more. Obviously he was not tuned in to what was simmering inside of his wife at the time.
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Old Mar 27th, 2007, 02:16 AM   #305
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

I thought Chris was like her dad and had his qualities that usually see in sons. However, it was her. It kind of remind me of what Roman Gabriel said of his former coach, George Allen and his daughter Jennifer who was the only girl in the family of boys. However, it was Jennifer that resembled George compared to George Jr., Bruce, and Gregory. Her book talks about George Jr. being a bully and redneck as well. Jennifer is now married and has two sons, Roman and Deacon.

I believe Chris realized this and wanted to prove that she is feminie. But it was never enough and never will be. I believe she is bi-sexual but doesn't like it. For her, you are either straight or not. However, her fluidity is revealing because she makes freinds with people who are better than her in both men and women. That is a rare quality especially from a competitive person like Chris.

One thing you didn't mention about Chris's play is her ability to improvise in tight situations ala Joe Montana. Chris did lot of version of Montana to Clark or make that charge at net. She just wasn't a moutpiece of John Evert like her other siblings were. She was able to process his coaching and make her own decisions particularly in tight situations. The only to get CHris was to blitz her and make her come up with decision and after decision which was Mike Estep strategy for his pupil Martina Nav. His view if you weren't being passed at least 30 or more times, you aren't doing your job. Eventually, the constant decision making wore her out.
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Old Mar 27th, 2007, 06:27 PM   #306
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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The only to get CHris was to blitz her and make her come up with decision and after decision which was Mike Estep strategy for his pupil Martina Nav. His view if you weren't being passed at least 30 or more times, you aren't doing your job. Eventually, the constant decision making wore her out.
No one could beat Martina when she was on at net and playing well. Mike Estep said that its tougher to hit great pass after pass from the baseline, than for a great volley to hit a winner. Especially given Martina's ability to place her serves to open up the court. Also, Martina's groundies just were not as steady as Chris', so Estep told Martina that she had to live and die by what she did best.

In that Youtube clip (I've also got the DVD) of the Jimmy Connors Comprehensive tennis, Chris talked about how Martina could serve her wide to the backhand (the two hander giving her less reach), taking her off of the court to open up the entire court for the put away volley. Chris had to be in unbelievable form to hit the passer in that situation (which she often was -- I remember the great down the line and cross court winners in that situation -- but it was tough). Also, Chris said that Martina had wonderful placement of her serves, which I believe took away some angles not to mention making Chris have to hit the return of her life.

So, I disagree that it was "decision after decision" that Martina took advantage of, rather than reach and speed. Fact is, as quick as Chris' feet were (which really helped her), she wasn't comfortable or as quick moving forward and back. Everyone knew that and tried (if they had the ability) to take advantage. The very best players could to some degree. Billie Jean would hit that low slice on grass at her feet and make Evert dig and bend for it, or push her out of court as Martina did with that low slice angle.

Chris wasn't really as bad an athlete as she thought, but Martina and Steffi were FASTer than even the good players, which meant they could naturally get to more shots than Chris (leaving her to have to make unbelievable passes to compensate).

An example was 1988 Wimbie semi. Chris played outstanding, but Martina reached some shots that few others could have gotten too.
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Old Mar 27th, 2007, 07:12 PM   #307
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Originally Posted by OrdinaryfoolisNJ View Post
No one could beat Martina when she was on at net and playing well. Mike Estep said that its tougher to hit great pass after pass from the baseline, than for a great volley to hit a winner. Especially given Martina's ability to place her serves to open up the court. Also, Martina's groundies just were not as steady as Chris', so Estep told Martina that she had to live and die by what she did best.

In that Youtube clip (I've also got the DVD) of the Jimmy Connors Comprehensive tennis, Chris talked about how Martina could serve her wide to the backhand (the two hander giving her less reach), taking her off of the court to open up the entire court for the put away volley. Chris had to be in unbelievable form to hit the passer in that situation (which she often was -- I remember the great down the line and cross court winners in that situation -- but it was tough). Also, Chris said that Martina had wonderful placement of her serves, which I believe took away some angles not to mention making Chris have to hit the return of her life.

So, I disagree that it was "decision after decision" that Martina took advantage of, rather than reach and speed. Fact is, as quick as Chris' feet were (which really helped her), she wasn't comfortable or as quick moving forward and back. Everyone knew that and tried (if they had the ability) to take advantage. The very best players could to some degree. Billie Jean would hit that low slice on grass at her feet and make Evert dig and bend for it, or push her out of court as Martina did with that low slice angle.

Chris wasn't really as bad an athlete as she thought, but Martina and Steffi were FASTer than even the good players, which meant they could naturally get to more shots than Chris (leaving her to have to make unbelievable passes to compensate).

An example was 1988 Wimbie semi. Chris played outstanding, but Martina reached some shots that few others could have gotten too.

What I remember from the 1988 semi was the air of Steffi Graf. It was kind of strange both players knew that they were going to get whipped in the final by Graf (though Martina took the first set) so they really put a lot into the match like it was a final. I remember feeling that I rather have Chris return Martina's serve than for Chris to serve. Martina seemed to read her serve and attack it well off it particularly the second one. Though Chris served well, I wasn't comfortable with it because both GRaf and Martina seemed to bounce around a little too much while she was serving.
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Old May 11th, 2007, 04:54 PM   #308
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

Found this lovely photo of our favourite girl while surfing today.

http://archive.gulfnews.com/articles.../10124181.html
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Old May 11th, 2007, 06:24 PM   #309
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Found this lovely photo of our favourite girl while surfing today.

http://archive.gulfnews.com/articles.../10124181.html

It seems like reality has just hit Chris while Greg looks like he is just getting started.
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Old May 28th, 2007, 09:11 PM   #310
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

This article is talking about Serena's first round win, and the fact that she hasn't succombed as of yet in a GS first round. But it also mentions that fact that Chris had 55-0 Grandslam first round losses in her career. Margaret Court had 47-0! Way to go girls.

http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/ten...nie&id=2884163
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Old Jun 9th, 2007, 05:54 AM   #311
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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This article is talking about Serena's first round win, and the fact that she hasn't succombed as of yet in a GS first round. But it also mentions that fact that Chris had 55-0 Grandslam first round losses in her career. Margaret Court had 47-0! Way to go girls.

http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/ten...nie&id=2884163
Technically, that's true. But Margaret lost her first match in the second round at Wimbledon in 1962 (to Billie Jean Moffitt) after receiving a first round bye.
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Old Jun 13th, 2007, 05:48 PM   #312
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

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Technically, that's true. But Margaret lost her first match in the second round at Wimbledon in 1962 (to Billie Jean Moffitt) after receiving a first round bye.
Not to stray too far off topic, but I think Billie Jean Moffitt's upset was more important, and more spectacular than Graf losing to McNeil. People (and Graf) knew who Lori McNeil was long before that upset, and I believe (correct me if I'm wrong) Lori had wins over both Evert and Navratilova prior to this particular grass-court first round with Graf. In 1962, Billie Jean Moffit was still pretty much a chubby little unknown to most of the tennis world.
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Old Jun 13th, 2007, 06:59 PM   #313
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

Lori never beat Martina.
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Old Jun 15th, 2007, 01:20 AM   #314
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

From the Sporting News July 18, 1981

I wonder how many years it took John to forgive Chrissie for the following:

King John Snubs Hosts and Press

London-Newly crowned Wimbledon tennis champion John McEnroe bade goodbye to England in a shower of glass and broken china as he barged past photographers at Heathrow Airport in a desperate attempt to sneak away to a flight to his home in New York.

McEnroe, who already had created some bad feelings when he skipped the annual champions' dinner at the Savoy Hotel the night before, had booked a seat on a morning flight July 5. But instead of checking in at the long-distance terminal, he went to the airport's European terminal, where his passport was checked, and then rode in an airline automobile across the tarmac to his plane.

The calm of British Airway's Concorde VIP lounge was shattered as cameramen leapt over loaded tables to chase after him. But McEnroe refused to talk and pushed photographers out of the way as he boarded the plane.

John McEnroe Sr. of Douglaston, N.Y., asked why his son did not attend the champions' party, said, "He was out celebrating somewhere else - don't ask me where."

Chris Evert-Lloyd, the women's singles champion, was appauded loudly at the dinner when she gave McEnroe's thank-you speech for him, in effect.

"Sir Brian Burnett (chairman of the All-England Tennis and Crocquet Club) said, in John's absence, that I would have to make two speeches," Chris said. "Unfortunately, I can make only one because I haven't John's vocabulary. But I apologize, as an American, for the fact that he is not here."
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Old Jun 15th, 2007, 03:26 PM   #315
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Re: Chris Evert Thread

Quote:
Originally Posted by Declan View Post
Lori never beat Martina.
Thanks for the correction.
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