Top 10 Greatest Men's Tennis Players of All Time

Updated on February 9, 2020
bdegiulio profile image

I have had a lifelong passion for the game of tennis from my days as a competitive youth player to now following the world's top players.

International Tennis Hall of Fame: Newport, RI

The International Tennis Hall of Fame and Museum
The International Tennis Hall of Fame and Museum | Source

I grew up playing tennis in the 1970s, which was a great time for the sport of tennis. It was then that tennis really became more of a mainstream sport than a sport for the privileged, especially here in the United States. With the likes of Jimmy Connors, Bjorn Borg, John McEnroe, Chris Evert, and others, there were plenty of personalities to fuel the rivalries that took place on and off the court. Since that time, many great players have come and gone. Because it is difficult to compare players of different eras in any sport due to technology changes and higher fitness standards, selecting the greatest player ever can be a difficult and very subjective task.

One thing I think most fans can agree on is that we are currently witnessing 3 of the greatest ever in Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, and Novak Djokovic.

Despite the challenge, here is my list of the ten greatest male tennis players of the Open Era - 1968 to present. I have actually included eleven players here with two greats tied for the tenth position.

10. Ken Rosewall

Ken Rosewall
Ken Rosewall | Source
  • Born: November 2, 1934
    Sydney, Australia
  • Resides: Sydney, Australia
  • Turned pro: 1957
  • Retired: 1980
  • Career prize money: $1,602,700
  • 133 career titles
  • 8 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 4 Australian, 2 French, 2 US Open
  • 15 Pro Majors: 2 US Pro, 5 Wembley Pro, 8 French Pro
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 1980

With a long career that included both the pre and post Open Era, Ken Rosewall certainly deserves a place among the all-time greats of tennis. His eight Grand Slam titles combined with 15 Major Championships undoubtedly qualifies Rosewall a place in tennis immortality. With a career that started in the early 1950s and ended with his retirement in 1980, the quick and agile Aussie was renowned for his backhand and crisp and accurate volleying. His last Grand Slam title came at the 1972 Australian Open at the age of 37, still a record for the oldest Grand Slam winner.

I watched Ken Rosewall play during the latter part of his career and at the time probably did not realize the greatness I was watching. To compete at his age with the next generation of tennis greats speaks volumes to his conditioning and mental toughness. I am placing him in the tenth position along with Andre Agassi as I feel that both players are worthy of a top ten.

10. Andre Agassi

Andre Agassi
Andre Agassi | Source
  • Born: April 29, 1970
    Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Resides: Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Turned pro: 1986
  • Retired: 2006
  • Career prize money: $31,152,975
  • 61 career titles
  • 8 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 4 Australian, 1 French, 2 US Open, 1 Wimbledon
  • Olympic Gold Medalist 1996
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 2011

Who can forget the young, brash, long-haired Andre Agassi when he first arrived on the tennis scene in the late 1980s? I have to admit that at first I was put off by his seemingly "rock star" looks and attitude. But something happened along the way, and by the time he finished his 20-year career, I was not only a fan but I had also come to respect him as a great player and spokesman for the game. With those killer ground strokes and returns of serve, no top-10 list would be complete without Andre Agassi.

Off the court, Agassi has proven to be a champion as well. There may be no athlete out there who does more for their community than Agassi and his wife, tennis legend Steffi Graf.

9. John McEnroe

John McEnroe
John McEnroe | Source
  • Born: February 16, 1959
    Wiesbaden, West Germany
  • Resides: New York City
  • Turned pro: 1978
  • Retired: 1992
  • Career prize money: $12,547,797
  • 105 career titles
  • 7 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 3 Wimbledon, 4 US Open
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 1999

John McEnroe: What do we do about Johnny Mac? Well, for starters we include him on our list of all-time greats. When it came to hard courts, fast surfaces, and creative shot-making, there may have been no one better.

His fiery attitude and occasional bad-boy behavior made tennis fans either hate him or love him. Underneath was a highly competitive athlete who hated to lose and sometimes let his emotions get the best of him.

Who can forget his epic battles with rival Jimmy Connors and his five-set loss to Bjorn Borg in the 1980 Wimbledon final, one of the greatest matches in Wimbledon history?

8. Jimmy Connors

Jimmy Connors
Jimmy Connors | Source
  • Born: September 2, 1952
    East St. Louis, Illinois
  • Resides: Santa Barbara, CA
  • Turned pro: 1972
  • Retired: 1996
  • Career prize money: $8,641,040
  • 147 career titles
  • 8 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 1 Australian, 2 Wimbledon, 5 US Open
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 1998

No one dominated tennis more during the mid-1970s than Jimmy Connors. In 1974 alone, Connors had a staggering 99-4 record and won the three Grand Slam tournaments that he entered. Connors was banned from playing in the French Open in 1974 due to his association with World Team Tennis, and this prevented him from a possible Grand Slam sweep. Despite peaking in the 1970s, Connors had a long and impressive tennis career, retiring in 1996. Connors still holds the record for ATP tour titles with 109.

7. Ivan Lendl

Ivan Lendl
Ivan Lendl | Source
  • Born: March 7, 1960
    Ostrava, Czechoslovakia
  • Resides: Goshen, Connecticut
  • Turned pro: 1978
  • Retired: 1994
  • Career prize money: $21,262,417
  • 144 career titles
  • 8 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 2 Australian, 3 French, 3 US Open
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 2001

The quiet and stoic Czech with the big serve was the most dominant player of the 1980s. Lendl wore down his opponents with his powerful ground strokes, topspin forehand, and incredible level of conditioning. He was the world’s top-ranked player for four years, and held the number one ranking in the world for 270 weeks, a record in that day. In contrast to many of his more outspoken peers, Lendl was known for letting his game do his talking.

6. Bjorn Borg

Bjorn Borg
Bjorn Borg | Source
  • Born: June 6, 1956
    Sodertalje, Stockholm County, Sweden
  • Resides: Stockholm, Sweden
  • Turned pro: 1973
  • Retired: 1983
  • Career prize money: $3,655,751
  • 101 career titles
  • 11 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 6 French, 5 Wimbledon
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 1987

What was not to love about the long-haired, blonde Swede with the killer ground game? With ice water in his veins, the quiet Borg dominated tennis in the late 1970s and had some memorable matches with the likes of John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors. Borg dominated Wimbledon, winning the title five consecutive years from 1976 to 1980.

Despite his relatively brief career (he retired in 1983 at the age of 26), Borg won 11 Grand Slam titles, all at Wimbledon and the French Open. Borg was the first player of the modern era to win more than 10 majors. In my book Bjorn Borg could have been a top five all-time had he continued to play and not retired while seemingly in the prime of his career.

5. Pete Sampras

Pete Sampras
Pete Sampras | Source

Born: August 12, 1971
Potomac, Maryland

  • Resides: Lake Sherwood, California
  • Turned pro: 1988
  • Retired 2002
  • Career prize money: $43,280,489
  • 64 career titles
  • 14 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 2 Australian, 7 Wimbledon, 5 US Open
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 2007

Pete's place in tennis history is difficult to judge as he only won three of the four Grand Slam events over the course of his career. Clearly more comfortable on hard courts and grass how do we decide one's place when they dominate on one surface and struggle on another. When Pete retired in 2002, he was considered to be the best player of all-time although some would dispute this. He was number one in the world rankings for six consecutive years and his 14 Grand Slam titles was a record at the time. Who can forget his epic battles with Andre Agassi that made the 1990s a great decade for tennis? Pete went out on top when he won the 2002 US Open, his last Grand Slam tournament. But, without a French Open title, or even a final, how do we decide where he belongs in the list of best ever. For now I think he comes in at the number five spot.

4. Rod Laver

Rod Laver
Rod Laver | Source
  • Born: August 8, 1938
    Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia
  • Resides: Carlsbad, California
  • Turned pro: 1962
  • Retired 1979
  • Career prize money: $1,565,413
  • 200 career titles
  • 11 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 3 Australian, 2 French, 2 US Open, 4 Wimbledon
  • 9 Pro Slam Singles Titles: 3 US Pro, 4 Wembley Pro, 1 French Pro, 1 Wimbledon Pro
  • Inducted into Tennis Hall of Fame: 1981

It’s difficult to assess how Rod Laver would have fared against the players of today, but I suspect the redheaded Aussie would have done just fine. It’s hard to argue with the “Rockets” record. He was ranked number one in the world for seven straight years (1964 – 1970) and has more career titles (200) than anyone in the history of the game.

He is the only player to have twice won the Grand Slam, doing it once as an amateur in 1962 and again as a pro in 1969. If Laver was not excluded from the Grand Slam tournaments during a five-year period in the mid-1960s, who knows how many he would have won. During this time period, the pre-open era, the Grand Slam tournaments were for amateurs only. The “open era” in tennis did not begin until 1968, when professionals were finally allowed to compete in the Grand Slam events. Given that Laver was ranked number one in the world during this five-year period, it’s likely he would have won many more Grand Slam titles.

3. Novak Djokovic

Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic | Source
  • Born: May 22, 1987
    Belgrade, Serbia
  • Resides: Monte Carlo, Monaco
  • Turned pro: 2003
  • Career prize money: $143,059,955
  • 78 career titles
  • 17 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 8 Australian, 5 Wimbledon, 3 US Open, 1 French Open
  • Current active player

Placing Novak Djokovic on this list was an easy decision, but where to place him was not. At 32 years of age and in the late prime years of his career, Djokovic is clearly the best player in the world at the moment and has the potential to win many more Grand Slam titles. With 17 Grand Slam titles already under his belt, he certainly has the potential to surpass Federer’s total of 20. But, in the highly competitive world of tennis, he could also succumb to injury and miss out on some of his best remaining years, so the jury is still out on his ultimate place in tennis history.

Based on his body of work to date, he has certainly made the case that he is deserving of a top three all-time. With his 2016 French Open title, Djokovic became the eight-man to secure a career Grand Slam. His dominating performance at the 2020 Australian Open and his epic 5-set win against Roger Federer at the 2019 Wimbledon Championship makes it clear that Djokovic is the best player in the world at the moment. But, is his body of work to date, and his status as the current number 1 enough to grant him greatest of all-time status? Time will tell, but for now we place Djokovic at number 3 all-time.

2. Rafael Nadal

Rafael Nadal
Rafael Nadal | Source
  • Born: June 3, 1986
    Manacor, Majorca, Balearic Islands, Spain
  • Resides: Manacor, Majorca, Balearic Islands, Spain
  • Turned pro: 2001
  • Career prize money: $120,583,119
  • 84 career titles
  • 19 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 1 Australian, 12 French, 4 US Open, 2 Wimbledon
  • 2008 Olympic Gold Medalist - Beijing Summer Olympics
  • Current active player

Were it not for the recurring tendinitis in his knees, and wrist injuries, Rafael Nadal may well have a few more Grand Slam titles to his already impressive resume. At 33 years of age, the fiery Spaniard, known as Rafa and “The King of Clay,” already has 19 Grand Slam titles and certainly has the potential to catch Roger Federer. Rafael is regarded as the greatest clay-court player of all-time, although fans of Bjorn Borg may dispute this claim. His record 12th French Open title in 2019, in dominating fashion, certainly makes it difficult to imagine anyone being better on clay.

While it is difficult to draw comparisons of players from different generations I think Nadal has proven that he deserves to be considered among the best to ever grace the courts. Winning 2 Grand Slams in 2019, including his gusty, marathon 5-set win at the US Open certainly raises the possibility that he will catch and potentially pass Roger Federer in the coveted race to capture the most Grand Slams titles.

1. Roger Federer

Roger Federer
Roger Federer | Source
  • Born: August 8, 1981
    Basel, Switzerland
  • Resides: Bottmingen, Switzerland
  • Turned pro: 1998
  • Career prize money: $129,231,891
  • 103 career titles
  • 20 Grand Slam Singles Titles: 6 Australian, 1 French, 5 US Open, 8 Wimbledon
  • Current active player

It’s hard not to select Roger Federer as the greatest of all time. His record 20 Grand Slam titles speak for themselves, and even at the age of 38, he is still winning and competing at the highest levels. His 310 weeks ranked as number one in the world is an open-era record. From 2004 to 2008, Federer went 237 consecutive weeks being ranked number one in the world, a record that may never be surpassed. Even though younger players are now finding a way to beat him, his consistently high level of play over his twenty-year career is a testament to his conditioning and ability.

Winning the 2018 Australian Open after his outstanding 2017 season that saw him win Wimbledon and the Australian Open prove without a doubt that Roger Federer is indeed the greatest of all-time. Barring injury, Roger will continue to be a force to be reckoned with for who knows how long? His dramatic 5-set loss to Novak Djokovic at the 2019 Wimbledon Championship proves that even at almost 38 years of age that he can still compete with anyone. Roger certainly had his chances to secure Grand Slam number 21, a loss that will haunt him with limited opportunities remaining, but he is setting a new level for excellence at an age when most players have long since retired.

After 6 years and almost 125,000 votes it’s time to refresh our list of players and the votes.

Who is the greatest men’s tennis player of the Open Era?

See results

Thank you to everyone for voting over the last 6 years (2013 - 2018). We are closing this poll in lieu of the newly expanded list of players.

Who do you think is the greatest men's tennis player of all-time?

  • 1% John McEnroe
  • 9% Novak Djokovic
  • 1% Andre Agassi
  • 0% Jimmy Connors
  • 0% Ivan Lendl
  • 14% Rafael Nadal
  • 3% Bjorn Borg
  • 2% Rod Laver
  • 2% Pete Sampras
  • 67% Roger Federer
124,807 people have voted in this poll.

This poll is now closed to voting.

Questions & Answers

  • How do you comment on the fact that Djokovic has a better score H2H vs. Nadal and vs. Federer? And Fed has a negative score vs. two of his greatest opponents? Few grand slams to Djokovic and few more wins vs. Fed and Nadal (so the score can be even better), and for me, he is the goat with no doubt.

    The head to head between the three players is very close. You have to take into consideration the playing surface and also their age. Federer is the oldest by almost five years, so obviously you would expect Nadal and Djokovic to have an advantage, especially at this point in their careers. Likewise, Nadal excels on clay so he would have a distinct advantage when playing on this surface.

  • Why don’t you take into account that almost half of the Federer grand slams were in the first years, before Nadal, Djokovic, etc?

    I did take that into account, just like I took into account that most of Nadal’s Grand Slam titles have come on clay, and Djokovic has not won a Grand Slam title since 2016. If you take their entire body of work into account, I think most ratings will have Federer as the greatest of all-time.

  • If Federer is the greatest men's tennis player, why was he never able to beat Nadal on the clay?

    Clay is just one surface, if you take that out of the picture the advantage goes to Federer. Consider also that Nadal is five years younger than Federer.

  • Who is the best men's tennis player on clay?

    I think without a doubt that Rafael Nadal is the best player to ever play on clay. Certainly his 11 French Open titles should be enough to make this perfectly clear.

  • What do you think about the 1000 masters series complete by Novak? is this achievement worth the upgrade on the list?

    Following completion of the U.S. Open, I plan on updating both the men’s and women’s top 10. Completing the Masters 1000 Slam is quite a feat, and Novak certainly seems to be back in top form.

© 2013 Bill De Giulio

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    • profile image

      Tyran Mathurin 

      7 days ago

      I think this is a fair article. Federer and Nadal deserve to be in the top two positions, in my opinion. And I feel in order for Dokovic to have ranked higher, he needed to do more during the 1st half of his rivalry against Federer and Nadal (2006-2010). During that periord of time referenced, Djokovic only managed to win just 1 GS title, of the first 20. Nadal, who is just 1 year younger than he, won 8. In fact, Nadal recorded more GS than Djokovic did on all 3 surfaces, by 2010. Djokovic should've at least held an edge over Nadal, on his best surface (HC). But he didn't. Djokovic also never faced a young Federer on grass (Fed's best surface). Most of Djokovic's bigger or greater achievements took place against an aging Federer, who had already reached 30 years old, by 2011. And also during the time Nadal was experiencing greater struggles with injuries. Nadal experienced more challenges with injuries, post 2011, than prior to that year. He missed more GS tournaments during 2012-2016, than he did from 2006-2011. To me, those factors made Djokovic's path towards his greater success was easier than that of Federer and Nadal.

    • profile image

      kunny 

      7 days ago

      i think rafael nadal is the best or djokovic if pick 1 i pick nadel

    • profile image

      Bob h 

      2 weeks ago

      Hej!

      Did I miss something or did Bill Tilden win 12 grand slams: FO 2; W 3; UO 7 between 1920-1930?

      Also, as far as most influential in the sport, MAC and Borg have to be on top (OK - Conners won UO on 3 different surfaces). Other than Federer nobody plays the FULL game in modern times as it should be played!

      There will be another. That’s just the nature of tennis!

    • profile image

      RAO SRINIVAS 

      4 weeks ago

      There is no doubt that Roger Federer is the Greatest of all Time. The testimony to this is that at 38 years of age he is still in top 3, and his rivals Rafael & Novak are in top 3 of the greatest of all time, which none of the rivals of Rod Laver or any other player had.

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      Farhaan Rahman 

      4 weeks ago

      Oh, this is really great information that you provide. But Roger has shown superb professional conduct and also an enviable tennis player

      Visit Us https://pressurelesstennisball.com/

    • profile image

      Grace 

      7 weeks ago

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      Gonzalo 

      7 weeks ago

      No doubt at all: The best tennis player ever is Rod Laver. I have been doing research watching his numerous games and he was a superb gifted tennis player. Also, he always showed a charming beautiful personality proper of a true professional sport man; he presented himself in the field as a humble sport man.

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      Tennis Hall of Fame 

      7 weeks ago

      The selection committee of The Tennis Hall of Fame hereby declare Rod Laver to be the Greatest Male Tennis Player of all Time! We believe that Rod Laver’s achievement of winning the The Grand Slam Twice, four calendar Grand Slam titles in the one year will never be equalled, let alone overtaken.

      We have also taken into account the 24 Grand Slam tournaments that Rod Laver was forced to miss, playing as a professional player from 1963 to 1968. We are of the belief that Rod Laver would have won around 15 to 19 out of those 24 Grand Slam tournaments on offer, which would have made his total Grand Slam titles rise from 11 to around 26 to 30.

      Those were the peak years of Rod Laver’s tennis career that he missed as a professional not being allowed to compete in Grand Slam tournaments.

      It was truly amazing that in 1969, Rod Laver eventually returned to playing Grand Slam tournaments, having been permitted to do so, and still won The Grand Slam, 4 Grand Slam titles in the calendar year, having done exactly the same in winning The Grand Slam in 1962, 4 Grand Slam titles in the calendar year.

      As he was banned from playing as a professional in Grand Slam tournaments from 1963 to 1968, in effect, Rod Laver won 8 Grand Slam tournaments in a row.

      Congratulations Rod Laver on being named The Greatest Male Tennis Player of All Time and may the Stadium named after him, The Rod Laver Arena, continue to go from strength to strength.

    • profile image

      Tennis Expert 

      8 weeks ago

      Rod Laver is the Greatest Tennis Player of All Time. The only man to have won the Calendar Grand Slam Twice. Laver missed his peak years of not being allowed to play as a professional between 1963 to 1968. If he had been allowed to play, Rod Laver would have won at least 25 Grand Slam singles titles. Federer, Nadal and Djokovic have not won even 1 calendar Grand Slam, 4 Grand Slam singles titles in the one year.

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      Tennis Referee 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, your complaints have been shown to officials within the ATP and no action will be taken. The Tennis Code of Conduct committee believes there is absolutely no case to answer for both Nadal and Djokovic.

      The committee believes that individuals like yourself are entitled to their opinion like anyone else but Federer has been asked his opinion and more importantly, he accepts the behaviour of both Nadal and Djokovic.

      He is not at all distracted by their past or present behaviour and in fact has told the hierarchy at the ATP and The International Tennis Federation that he gets along very well with Nadal and Djokovic and the three of them have been catching up on Zoom. He holds both Nadal and Djokovic as true professionals, who behave professionally. Federer’s word matters the most.

      Mr Djokovic has complained about the crowd behaviour towards him in matches against Federer, which he claims is unfair advantage to Federer. The ITF take this matter very seriously and will consider evicting unruly spectators against Djokovic in the future. The Security Guards at future tennis matches between the pair will be more vigilant.

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      Wayne 

      8 weeks ago

      Absolutely adore the GOAT Nadal.

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      Tennis Umpire 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, no matter you say you and how you write it, your are a very bad sport. Federer is not the greatest. I have no problem whatsoever with Nadal and Djokovic’s behaviour. Your appeal has been dismissed.

      Game set and match to Nadal and Djokovic.

    • profile image

      Bliss 

      8 weeks ago

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      Gonzalo 

      8 weeks ago

      Dear Tennis Umpire,

      Nadal, repeatedly has harassed the opponent by requesting additional time before serving. This action is unlawful because the players once ready can serve whenever they want unless there is an emergency. Again, I repeat, Nadal does this over and over; this is cheating and seriously upsetting for the opponent.

      Now, Novak also *used* to distract the whole game by showing extreme tiredness and in this way taking his time to "recover". Since a few years ago I have not observed this behavior. This behavior denotes his lack of professional conduct. Novak also used to have other aggressive actions such as breaking apart his shirt, etc.

      I do know that these two players, Novak and Rafael, probably, are among the very best 5 tennis player ever. Nevertheless they have shown unlawful, distracting, upsetting behavior that should not have been permitted. Since we are talking about men, I do not mention other tennis players that have even behaved much worst.

      At the contrary, Roger has shown a superb professional conduct and also an enviable tennis game; no doubt, Roger is a superb professional tennis player. The same occurs with Laver; you can even argue that Laver probably is the best tennis player ever but that is quite a long discussion and I am not ready to justify it because I don't know enough and requires a detailed research.

      Mr. Tennis Umpire, have in mind that I have been a true tennis lover and I have had the privilege of watching many ATP games, mostly involving the top tennis players: Roger, Novak, Rafael, Andy, Juan Martin, etc.

      And of course, my preferred tennis player used to be Rafael, but no more, he has been seriously abusive. And of course, I do accept that you could be proven that Novak has shown, about in 2011, probably the best tennis game ever. But quantitative success is not all. Not to me anyway.

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      Tennis Umpire 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, you don't seem to understand the issues of what constitutes cheating. Both Nadal and Djokovic are quite within their rights to take the full twenty seconds between serves. If they take longer, they are given a warning by the umpire. It's not at all cheating. They have been doing that for their whole careers, regardless of whether they play the best players in the world or qualifiers who they beat easily. It's only to settle themselves properly. There's no point rushing. It's just that other players are quicker to serve. It has absolutely nothing to do with cheating. For a player it's far more annoying to have the crowd barracking for an opponent like Federer and the crowd getting under your skin than it is for an opponent to take the full 20 seconds to serve.

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      Jeremy 

      8 weeks ago

      What shouldn’t be allowed Gonzalo is the excessive one sided cheering for all of Federer’s matches. It’s just not fair! Hopefully, matches without crowds or very limited crowds will help his opponents.

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      Larry 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, your hatred of Nadal and Djokovic is clear. It wouldn’t matter to you if Nadal and Djokovic had won 30 Grand Slam singles titles each. You can hate them. I just admire players who do their job well, winning their Grand Slam singles titles in a shorter time frame than Federer. Nadal and Djokovic will keep letting their racquets do the talking by winning more Grand Slam singles titles overall than Federer. Both Nadal and Djokovic are ACHIEVERS only.

    • profile image

      Gary 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, you are just trying to make ridiculous excuses for Federer losing to Nadal and Djokovic in Grand Slam tournaments. It is not the reason Federer loses to them. Federer has lost the biggest matches in Grand Slam tournaments to Nadal and Djokovic in the past, because Nadal and Djokovic have played better than Federer.

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      Realist 

      8 weeks ago

      Face the facts Gonzalo. Not only has Federer had a 5 year head and 20 Grand Slam tournaments head start start over Nadal and Djokovic to win Grand Slam titles, Federer’s first 5 years in Grand Slam tournaments were not against Nadal, Djokovic and Murray. When Nadal, Djokovic and Murray started their careers, they had to play each other at their peak, as well as Federer. Nadal and Djokovic have had far more tougher competition than Federer throughout their careers and Nadal and Djokovic have thrived. What they have achieved over a tougher and shorter Grand Slam tournament career is far more impressive than Federer.

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      Tennis Observer 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, Federer always has the crowd cheering much more for him. It’s an unfair advantage. It’s cheating. Yet, Federer still loses the majority of the big matches to Djokovic and Nadal for most of his career. Cheats never prosper.

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      Pancho 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, Federer is a CHEAT. He serves too quickly when the other players aren’t ready. He makes an excuse to go off the court when he is losing 5 set matches to break his opponents’ rhythm. Federer is a CHEAT. He made an audible obscenity to a female umpire during the Australian Open and got a warning. Federer is a bad person.

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      Ken 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, Nadal is a delightful, humble man. I am a massive Nadal fan and take offence to your pathetic and untrue observations. Nadal is only one Grand Slam title behind Federer, and has played in less than 20 Grand Slam tournaments than Federer and has had to miss many more Grand Slam tournaments than Federer. He has a better head to head record against Federer in Grand Slam tournaments and overall. Nadal is a true champion and the greatest tennis player of all time. Congratulations Rafa on a brilliant and remarkable tennis career!

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      Tom 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, they’re not cheating! Get that through your head! Nadal and Djokovic are the greatest tennis players of all time!

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      Gonzalo 

      8 weeks ago

      Dominic, why not? Does professional conduct count? Cheating should not be allowed. And yes, there are other famous tennis players that have behaved really bad on court. So Dominic, the professional conduct should participate in the evaluation of a player.

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      Dominic 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, your argument has absolutely no relevance whatsoever as to who is the greatest male tennis player of all time. Stick to the point and stop criticising other players.

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      Mohn JcEnroe 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, You Cannot Be Serious! Your disgraceful, disgusting and completely inaccurate accusations of cheating is utter nonsense! Nadal and Djokovic are much better players than Federer! Nadal and Djokovic are the greatest tennis players of all time and Federer is not. Look up the head to head records and who has won their Grand Slam titles in a shorter time frame.

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      Bob 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, you’re a very bad sport. Nadal and Djokovic have won their Grand Slam titles in a much quicker timeframe than Federer. Both Nadal and Djokovic have better head to head to records against Federer in both Grand Slam tournaments and overall.

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      Tennis Analyst 

      8 weeks ago

      Nadal is the greatest tennis player of all time because he won his 19 Grand Slam singles titles in a 5 year shorter timeframe than Federer’s 20 Grand Slam singles titles.

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      Warren 

      8 weeks ago

      Gonzalo, your logic is absolutely ridiculous. Nadal is the greatest tennis player of all time.

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      HHfan 

      2 months ago

      To Stats guy: I compared top 10 on both list and I would like to write:

      1) according to statistics Rod Laver is No 13 which does not take under consideration that he was not able to take part in GSlams for 6 years. Rod Laver is probably the only player who can claim that he is GOAT except RF, Rafa and Nole.

      2) Bjorn Borg retired very early - it was his decision, not injury. I think he deserves No 6 or maybe No 5 today. Bjorn is the second tennis player who can be in Top 5 easily if he played longer. Could surpass players 4-7 from stats list.

      3) Bill De Giulio's list will be probably soon updated and Nole will be No 2.

      So generally speaking Bill's list is in my opinion much closer to reality than pure statistics. Difference between Rafa and Nole is 2-3% today so it is very difficult to say who is better.

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      Stats guy. 

      2 months ago

      Great list pretty close to the statistic list.

      .

      https://www.ultimatetennisstatistics.com/goatList

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      Gonzalo 

      2 months ago

      We must reason objectively based on facts; only on facts and not on subjective feelings. We have seen Nadal and Djokovic being cheaters; that is a fact, the records are right there. Both, Nadal and Djokovic have purposely upset the opponent in several ways. This behavior has never EVER seen from Roger Federer. Roger has always played with the outmost professional conduct. These are facts we cannot deny; these are facts. Of course, Rod has always been a model when it comes to professional values.

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      Terry 

      2 months ago

      Eric, you forgot to mention Nadal has 19 majors in 5 less years and 20 less Grand Slam tournaments than Federer. Fred, you forgot to mention that Nadal has 12 French Opens, the hardest Grand Slam title for any top player in history to win. Wimbledon is not the biggest prize. It’s only 1 Grand Slam tournament and has the same and equal importance as a Grand Slam title as the French Open, Australian Open and US Open. Nadal is GOAT for sure. He has even beaten Federer in a Wimbledon Final and won 2 Wimbledon titles, his worst surface. That is awesome.

      Federer who was brought up on clay has only won 1 French Open.

      Nadal has also won 4 US Opens and an Australian Open on hardcourt. Awesome. Nadal is the GOAT.

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      Trevor 

      2 months ago

      Rod Laver is the GOAT.

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      Brett 

      2 months ago

      Nadal is the GOAT.

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      Frank 

      2 months ago

      Nadal is the GOAT for sure. 19 majors, 5 less years than Federer, only 1 major less, winning head to head record against Federer in Grand Slam tournaments and winning overall record against Federer. Nadal is the best.

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      Fred 

      2 months ago

      Federer is GOAT for sure. 8 Wimbledon’s tennis’s biggest prize. Awesome.

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      Eric 

      2 months ago

      Tennis channel agrees with you. 20 majors and 310 weeks at #1 is the GOAT Federer. Awesome site.

      https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.sportskeeda.com/a...

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      Realist 

      2 months ago

      In the end, it won’t matter what anybody says about who is the greatest male or female tennis player of all time. There are no awards given out for it. You simply cannot compare different eras of tennis. The main awards that are given out are for Grand Slam title trophies. When all these great players have retired, the history books will show who has won the most Grand Slam singles titles, as well as Grand Slam titles overall. What any one says will be irrelevant compared to the actual proof, the history.

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      Mohn JcEnroe 

      2 months ago

      To all the Federer fans, You Cannot Be Serious! Both Nadal and Djokovic are greater tennis players than Roger Federer. Both Nadal and Djokovic have better Grand Slam records when playing head to head against Roger Federer and both Nadal and Djokovic have almost caught Roger Federer on Grand Slam singles titles won, having both started their Grand Slam tournament career 5 years after Federer. Federer may be the most popular and the best game to watch but Nadal and Djokovic have claims to be the GOAT, not Federer.

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      Scott 

      2 months ago

      Gonzalo, your logic is ridiculous! We are talking about the greatest tennis player of all time. How can Federer be the greatest player of all time when he has only won 1 more Grand Slam singles title than Nadal and played 5 years longer as a professional than Nadal and played in 20 more Grand Slam tournaments than Nadal? Nadal has won his Grand Slam singles titles at a much quicker rate than Federer. I therefore declare Nadal to be the greatest male tennis player of all time.

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      The Referee 

      2 months ago

      Federer is only number 1 on polls because he is the most popular. He is not the greatest. Nadal, Djokovic and Laver are the greatest tennis players of all time.

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      Cameron 

      2 months ago

      Nadal is not a cheater. He is the greatest tennis player of all time. Federer is not the best. It has taken him 5 years longer than Nadal and Djokovic to win his Grand Slam titles. Federer is overrated. Nadal is the best, followed by Djokovic, then and Laver.

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      Gonzalo 

      2 months ago

      I used to be for Rafael Nadal. But after further analysis, I have noticed that he is a cheater: He frequently distracts the opponent by telling him that he is not ready. That is not acceptable at all because Rafael must get ready within a few seconds. I am sure that Rafael has this behavior to upset the opponent so he does it purposely; that is with no doubt a corrupt behavior. I am now highly pro Roger Federer because this player has always showed a full professional conduct, probably better than most. Even Novak Djokovic also has shown unprofessional conduct by appearing extremely tired and therefore distracting purposely the opponent. So the GOAT is between Roger Federer and Rod Laver; Rod has shown incredible professional conduct on the field.

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      Faith 

      2 months ago

      PeRFect list. The GOAT Federer is #1 on every website and poll!

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      Michael 

      2 months ago

      1. Rod Laver

      2. Rafael Nadal

      3. Novak Djokovic

      4. Roger Federer

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      Jerry 

      2 months ago

      Rod Laver is the GOAT. Rod Laver was absolutely brilliant in winning the Grand Slam twice in 1962 and 1969. This was an absolutely phenomenal achievement to win the Australian Open, French Open, Wimbledon and US Open in the same calendar year in those 2 years of 1962 and 1969. Rod Laver would have won the most Grand Slam titles of all time had professionals been allowed to play in Grand Slam tournaments from 1963 to 1968. Rod Laver is the greatest male tennis player of all time. The big 3 in Djokovic, Nadal and Federer have never won the Grand Slam, 4 Grand Slam titles in the 1 calendar year. Well done Rocket Rod Laver!

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      Tennis Observer 

      2 months ago

      Federer is not the GOAT. He has a losing head to head record to Nadal and Djokovic. Nadal is the GOAT. Then Djokovic will be the GOAT. Federer is not as good as Nadal and Djokovic.

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      Fred 

      2 months ago

      Federer is king of tennis and GOAT.

      Rafa is king of clay and bull.

      ND is joker.

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      Grace 

      2 months ago

      Federer is the GOAT for sure. Great list!

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      Rafamania 

      2 months ago

      Nadal has 19 Grand Slam singles titles. When Federer was the same age as Nadal is now, Federer had 17 Grand Slam singles titles. Rafa Nadal is the greatest male tennis player of all time.

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      Nadalmania 

      2 months ago

      Rafael Nadal is the greatest tennis player of all time. He is a much better player than Roger Federer. Carn The Mighty Rafa Nadal!

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      Gary 

      2 months ago

      Love the tennis GOAT Rafa Nadal.

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      Tennis fan 

      2 months ago

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      Gary 

      2 months ago

      Tony, I disagree entirely with you. You forgot to mention that Federer’s last 3 Grand Slam singles titles, twice in 2017 and once in 2018 came about when Djokovic and Murray and to a lesser extent Nadal, were handling injuries that prevented them from competing at their best and Djokovic even missed playing in some of the Grand Slam titles won by Federer in that period. You fail to mention that when Federer was at his peak, Nadal, Djokovic and Murray were either not on the scene or very new to the ATP. You also fail to mention that Nadal and Djokovic are still and always have been competing against each other at their peak and Federer for Grand Slam titles, like they were doing against Murray at his peak before Murray suffered major injuries. This is greater competition than Federer has ever had before Nadal, Djokovic and Murray came on the scene. Believe me, Federer has had the greatest advantage of all of those players by playing on the ATP tour at least 5 years before all of those other players and for Nadal, to be only 1 Grand Slam title behind Federer after giving Federer 5 years head start, as well as continually competing with Djokovic, Federer and Murray for the whole of his career, is truly remarkable. That’s why Nadal is the greatest male tennis player of all time.

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      John 

      2 months ago

      I think one of the biggest tragedies of all time was the continual injuries suffered by Juan Martin Del Potro. After Del Potro, aged 20, beat Federer in the US Open Final in 2009, he was often injured for long periods of time. He was very talented and so good that had he remained free of major injuries for the majority of his tennis career, he could have ended up one of the greatest male tennis players of all time.

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      Brett 

      2 months ago

      John Newcombe is the greatest male tennis player of all time because he won 26 Grand Slam titles, 7 in singles, 17 in doubles and 2 in mixed doubles.

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      Harry 

      2 months ago

      I completely disagree with the people who say Nadal and Djokovic are lucky there is no one younger than them who are good. That’s because Nadal and Djokovic are that good that no one younger than them can beat them consistently. Federer is lucky that Nadal, Djokovic and Murray did not start their careers the same time as Federer because Federer would have a lot less than 20 Grand Slam singles titles by now.

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      Jeff 

      2 months ago

      Nadal and Djokovic have had it much harder than Federer because Nadal And Djokovic have not only had to face one another at their peak, but also Federer and Murray at their peak throughout their whole careers. Whereas for many years of his career, Federer did not have to face Nadal, Djokovic and Murray at their peak.

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      Larry 

      2 months ago

      Rod Laver is by far the greatest male tennis player of all time. He won The Calendar Grand Slam twice and no modern day male player has won a calendar Grand Slam even once. Rod Laver won 11 Grand Slam singles titles but I firmly believe he would have won at least 25 Grand Slam singles titles or more had he not turned professional, as he was not allowed to play as a professional in the years 1963 to 1968 inclusive, and his calendar Grand Slams were in 1962 and 1969. That’s 24 Grand Slam singles tournaments that he missed at the peak of his career.

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      Paul 

      2 months ago

      Nadal is the best player of all time because he has a better head to head record against Federer in Grand Slam finals and overall. Not only has Nadal won 12 Grand Slam singles titles on clay, but he has won 4 US Open singles titles on hardcourt, 2 Wimbledon titles on grass, of which one was against Federer, and 1 Australian Open title on hardcourt. Most of the best players of all time have clay as their worst and hardest surface, yet Nadal has won 12 French Opens, the hardest Grand Slam tournament to win. Don’t forget that Federer was brought up on clay in Switzerland. He only won 1 French Open when Nadal was knocked out early in the tournament. Yet Nadal has won 2 Grand Slam titles on his worst surface, grass. Nadal is a better player than Federer, and Federer has had 5 years head start on Nadal. Nadal is the greatest male tennis player of all time.

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      Brian 

      2 months ago

      Rafa Nadal is the best male singles player of all time. He started as a tennis professional 5 years later than Federer and is only 1 Grand Slam singles title behind Federer, 19 to 20. Only injuries have prevented Nadal from passing Federer with the most Grand a Slam singles titles. Nadal has played 20 fewer Grand Slam tournaments than Federer.

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      mirko 

      4 months ago

      Pity that a current situation stopped tennis being played because Novak has been in an incredible swing and likely to surpass a majority of Federer's records. We hope that tennis will be soon played and these three aliens keep pushing boundaries.

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      Tony 

      4 months ago

      Head to Head issue.

      This is a misleading issue to these 3 all time greats.

      No matter what is the form of Federer, he always went deep into the tournament.

      But this is not the case for the rest of two. Those who do not agree could check, e.g. the most consecutive wins in grand slam matches.

      And if Nadal and Novak were in good form, they are certainly could go deep into the tournament.

      And for example, in 2015, Novak is in a very good form but how about Federer, only a fair one. But they meet for 8 times in which Federer could still secure 3 wins. And in 2017, people thought Federer came back and Novak had some issues, how many times they met in 2017 ? No doubt, I would have thought if they met 8 times in 2017, how many wins could Novak get ?

      And for Nadal, since the end of 2016, if I am not wrong, they had met 6 times in which Fed got 5 wins and Nadal could only get a win on clay in FO 2019. Taken also into account of their age, the issue between them who is better is quite clear.

      Besides, I observe there is some difficulties for Nadal to beat top players in a consecutive manner in the same tournament and that is why his win in London Final is yet to be accomplished.

      Grand Slam wins issue

      Without the Nadal and Novak, there is no doubt Federer will have more slam wins in his pocket.

      It is very difficult for him to get some more wins in view of the 2 potential all time great are still playing at this high level.

      But for Nadal and Djo, there is now no competitive young guys to stop them to win some more slams, unlike Federer to face Nadal.

      It accounts for the reasons that even if Nadal and Djo could surpass the number of slam wins, there will not reflect the difficulty in which Federer to get a slam win at the age of 30+

      Grand slam wins in early days issue.

      Federer in his early days, he has to face many No. 1 and these No. 1 are almost the same age of Federer, like Ferror, Hewitt, Roddick, Safin. Apart from these so called young guns at his generation, he has also to face other 2 potential all time greats - Sampras and Agassi who are only at their late twenties or early thirties at that time, you could see how competitive or to get a win in a slam or other tournament at this era.

      So people say Federer could get easy win in his early time is by all means showing disrespect to all these good and No. 1 players.

      There are in fact some other issues which are in favour of Federer to be the all time great over Nadal and Djo. that could not be possibly list them all out.

      Hope there is no hard feelings to all Nadal and Djo fans.

      The above is only my personal observation and there is nothing showing disrespect to Nadal and Djo and the duos are still remain the best players for the moment, indeed.

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      Tennis player 

      4 months ago

      Open era is since 1968.

      1. Federer

      2. Laver

      3. Nadal

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      Dragan Cekic 

      5 months ago

      Period 2010. - 2020. - ATP Masters 1000 - Novak Djokovic 29 Titles, Rafael Nadal 20 Titles and Roger Federer 12 Titles. Period 2010. - 2020. - GRAND SLAM (2.000 points) - Novak Djokovic 16 Titles, Rafael Nadal 13 Titles and Roger Federer 5 Titles.

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      HHfan 

      5 months ago

      I think Nole should be No 2, and Rafa on the 3rd.

      Nole: approx 10% less weeks as No 1 and 15% less GS.

      Rafa: approx 33% less weeks as No 1 and 5% less GS

      comparing to Roger's records.

      The number of weeks as No 1 shows that Nole is much stronger in general. Even with another Paris Rafa loses to Novak. Besides it is not sure that Rafa will win in Paris 2020, because of seed: he (2) will probably play in semifinal with Thiem (3). In the same way we can be sure that Nole will add some weeks as No 1, because of statistics. So - there are no arguments to keep Rafa as No 2 at the moment. I think in one year time we will discus if Nole is better than Federer, because No 3 for Rafa will be obvious for everybody.

      Sorry for my English.

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      Gonzalo 

      5 months ago

      Keynes, your predictions could happen since Novak has brought the best tennis ever back in 2011-12. Now, recently, he has come back quite strong again. Nevertheless, nothing is sure and more so since Novak has had very serious physical impairments. It appears that he has learned to overcome his injuries; elbow and shoulder. But we are not sure; his ailments could come back at any moment and make him disable as a tennis professional as it happened a few years ago. Being truthful, I have strong doubts that Novak can keep up healthy because he will have to confront very challenging opponents.

      So Keynes, we must wait about two more years. If Novak could hold physically, your predictions will be correct.

      Similarly happens with Nadal. We don't know how long he could keep up strong and also, if he could improve further his game; he is showing a weak tennis game, again, because he is not offensive enough. Maybe he is weak physically and because of this, he is afraid to raise his level. If Rafael wants to succeed playing against Novak he must begin attaching him from the very first return. It appears that uncle Toni is gone from the picture, so everything is possible.

      So basically, all depends if Novak can keep up strong and if Rafael can improve his game.

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      Keynes 

      5 months ago

      I'm pretty much sure that Nole will finish career wiht:

      1. Most Slams (I think 22 or 23)

      2. Most masters

      3. Most big titles (masters, master finals and GS together)

      4. Most master finals

      5. Most years end as no1

      6. Most weeks as no1

      7. Most all titles ever (more than Conors)

      8. Better H2H with Fed and Rafa

      9. All masters won

      10. All slams won

      11. Four slams in a row(first and only ever on three different surfaces)

      What will be left for Rafa and Fed fans?

      All of what I said is very close and very much possible.

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      dpmanangan007@gmail.com 

      5 months ago

      GOD BLESS YOUR RF. CONTINUE TO BE A HUMBLE MAN. I PRAY FOR YOUR TO HAVE 1 OR 2 GS200

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      Insider 

      5 months ago

      The New Gen is the Now Gen. Starting with Thiem at the French, Tsitsi, Zverev, Medvedev and co. are ready Now for DomiNation. I do wish Monfils would win one French Open, but his fitness at 33 over 5 sets? We'll see.

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      Gonzalo 

      5 months ago

      Jorge, you are quite correct, Roger was a great tennis player and he was the player to follow. Now Roger is about to formally retired; he is injured and his body will not be able to hold strong enough.

      So now the question is, who is the goat? This year, 2020, will be interesting. Will Nadal be able to hold? I have serious doubts. It appears that Djokovic has learned on how to overcome his physical ailments.

      I have a feeling that Nadal's glory is about to be a thing of the past and Djokovic is going to be the goat with no challenge in the near horizon. I am pretty sure that Djokovic will end this year with a tally of at least 19 grand slams.

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      Jorge 

      5 months ago

      Another important fact for setting Federer as number 1 is his style of game and being considered by fans the most beloved or favorite tennis players for 17 consecutive years. So many people cannot be wrong!

      In addition, courts are slower and slower every year in order to have larger rallies, that´s goes totally in favor of Nadal and specially Djokovic and against Federer. The 2019 Wimbledom tournamanet looked more like a clay tournament than a grass tournament and still Federer missed two championship points. Besides there are not masters 1000 grass tournaments.

      Federer is also almost fiver years older than Nadal and almost six years older than Djokovic, the last two are also lucky that did not appear a strong player younger than them. So there are many reasons why Federer is by far the GOAT, no matter if Djokovic and Nadal wins more Grand Slams than him since there are many, but many more records held by Federer even when the ATP tournaments has put all the odds against him as the courts speed.

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      GOAT Tennis 

      5 months ago

      Rewatching Federer matches from 2004-7, you can see why he is the greatest of all time. Before he got mono, his consistency was incredible, hit lines at will. His backhand at tennis masters 2006 was the best ever.

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      Ratko 

      5 months ago

      Gonzalo. I think you cry every time Novak wins the GS title. :) Do you know Novak personally? He is a great humanitarian and a fighter for sick children, especially in Serbia. Novak is a member of the Orthodox faith, who comes from the Balkans from Eastern Europe from a small country called Serbia. do you know how many Serbs there are in the world? Maybe just over 12 million. Tennis is a sport that was created in Western Europe and is most widely represented in Western Europe, US and Australia. How do these people feel about themselves when one man from a small country, another Christian faith comes and defeats all their players? They were angry. In the beginning of his career, Novak was popular in the eyes of the tennis audience. He liked to imitate other players and make jokes. The problem is when he started to beat the biggest players of that game. First of all, I think of the icons of Federer and Nadal, he changed their careers and ended their great rivalry. Then Rafa and Federer had to share all the trophies with Novak. What is evident Novak has had a much harder road to tennis G.O.A.T players than Rafa and Federer. He was far behind them. He never had support in stadiums when playing with Federer, Nadal or Murray. Always 90% of the audience cheered against him. Alone against all. Novak is a mental rock. Many agree that if Federer and Rafa had such miserable and poor support they would never become what they are.

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      Gonzalo 

      5 months ago

      Again, Novak Djokovic, to my judgment, will never be accepted as a truly professional tennis player and all because of his demeanor. He even behaves as if he were a superior man, above the others.

      At the contrary, Federer and Nadal have always been worry about their professional conduct; they are humble and are not afraid to accept others as great professionals.

      And believe me, my feeling about Novak is not just me. Very many people feels the same way; many tennis fans simply don't like Novak as a person. Novak does not have the level of acceptance among fans as Federer and Nadal; it is a fact no one can deny. Even, Novak's father has come forward to give support to his son because of this situation; they feel envy because Novak is not liked by fans as Federer and Nadal.

      Yes, I don't deny that Novak could pretty soon end up with a much higher quantitative record playing tennis than all other tennis players. But to me, I will never accept Novak as a truly professional tennis player; you must also be a human person with values to be a professional sport man or woman.

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      Keynes 

      5 months ago

      We are coming to the point where Fed fans, who always told us that Fed is Goat cuz of GS record and no1 record, will now start saying that that is not crucial. That even if somobody else takes over this records, he will remain goat. It's very funny, really... Now they start talking about elegancy, fair play and etc... What a defeat. When somebody proves that he is better you just shake hands and admit that fact... Its Sportsmanlike.

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      Nebojsa 

      5 months ago

      Dear collegemath@gmail.com.

      It doesnt matter what one does to win. At the end people will remember one thing. Novak dominated past decade. You can argue he is not best because he doesnt have 20 GS. But as soon as he gets there... this conversation is finished.

      BR, Nebojsa

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      collegemath@gmail.com 

      5 months ago

      Dear Ratko, I don't agree with your evaluation. Novak has been a tricky player many times. When Novak is losing control he uses unprofessional acts mostly playing the extremely tired player and in this way distracting the opponent or calling the trainer for special treatment; this is a fact that you can observe in important matches. Also, although not proven yet, I have observe Novak also intakes very questionable food because after it, he feels a lot better. In other words, I don't trust one bit Novak's professional conduct.

      At the contrary Federer has never canceled a match even though he may be injured. Federer has never been tricky in every single match. The same Nadal. Nadal is not afraid of accepting losing; he has played even injured until the very end knowing he was going to lose.

      I don't trust Novak professionally one bit. Also Novak's behavior often on is disgusting. All of this very easy to remember because it has been obvious.

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      Ratko 

      5 months ago

      Novak Djokovic is the best player of all time. He has proven it in over 50 matches with his two biggest rivals Federer and Nadal. Djokovic will set such tennis records that they will not be broken for a hundred years.

      First this record with 310 weeks of Federer, then everything else. BIG TITLES Djokovic: 17GS, 34 M, 5 Atp = 56, Rafa Nadal : 19GS, 35 M and dont have Atp masters title which is very important = 54, Federer: 20GS, 28 M, 6 Atp finals = 54. All these titles must be counted when selected G.O.A.T between these three tennis titans. Then the number of weeks in place number ONE and their mutual score, especially in the finals . Do not forget Djokovic hould all four major titles at once, the first since Rod Laver in 1969 and the first ever on three different surfaces. And first won all 9 Masters titles. Federer plays perhaps the most beautiful tennis but is the big question is he the greatest ever.

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      Tennis fan 

      6 months ago

      Federer is the GOAT for sure. Great list.

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      Keynes 

      6 months ago

      I think even Rafa and Roger both know that Novak is unplayble, and that he has surpassed them with the level of tennis long time ago. Of course, that doesnt mean they cant win Nole sometimes, but they are always underdogs in those matches(except Rafa on clay)... Between this three, Novak is no1 on all surfaces except the clay, and on clay he is the greatest treat to Rafa. If you see their head to head from 2011 to 2020 and thats last ten years, you wont believe how Novak was superior... He has 10 more wins vs both other goats. I think somethig like 21:9 or something similar vs both... Its been ten years that Novak is best in the world,and so many fans dont want to recognize that. And Roger and Rafa won 2-3 more slams while he was out of the game cuz of injury... When he came back, they were nowhere. RAFA won US just cuz Novak lost vs Wawrinka cuz of injury... He would not win Nole onhard court. NEVER.

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      HHfan 

      6 months ago

      Novak has a chance to beat two the most important records of Federer: No of Grand Slams, and No of weeks as a No1 in ATP rank. In my opinion his tennis is also the most universal because of his great movement.

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      Dr. Tennis 

      6 months ago

      H2H is very important.

      You cannot discount Clay court.

      If we take Grand Slam as the measuring stick.

      You cannot have players count both the USA open and the AU open. Is a double reward. If Nadal had played two Clay Grand Slam per season no one would be close.

      To count the Grand Slams, you must take the total number of US and AO and divide by 2.

      Djokovic would be in the worst shape.

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      Ralph 

      6 months ago

      Interesting listing

      I have watched tennis in the flesh since 1949.

      The greatest by some distance is Rod Laver - its very obvious that Federer thinks the same - he treats Laver with awe.

      Laver - 2 grand slams - none of the others have done that

      Laver far greater mobility then the other top 3 - a much smaller and more athletic man - led to much better court coverage.

      His net game was sublime

      A top spin back hand left handed that made him impossible

      The gap of 5 years at his peak made no difference - came back with another Grand Slam

      Of the others - Gonzalez better than all except Laver plus your top 3 - aggressive with tremendous athletic court coverage and power

      At number 5 - Roy Emerson - had it all - same era as Laver

      Better than Sampras, Agassi, Rosewall, Newcombe Borg etc

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      M.murugan 

      6 months ago

      Roger Federer best in the world

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      Dhanwant Bath 

      6 months ago

      I think Pete Sampras was better player then Roger Fadrer....if he didn’t retire in young age......

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      Shawn 

      9 months ago

      On grass it isn’t even close.

      https://www.ultimatetennisstatistics.com/goatList

      Federer is by far the GOAT.

      Federer has the edge on hardcourt 11 majors to 10 but it is closer on that surface.

      Cheers.

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      Tom 

      9 months ago

      Djokovic is younger now then Federer was the first time Djokovic ever beat Federer on grass. Federer had 7 Wimbledons at 30 and Djokovic is 32 with 5 so for sure Federer is GOAT.

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      Zaza 

      9 months ago

      I loe Novack, but he could not make the top 100 if the surfaces were the same as even 2000. He can NOT compete indoors as you saw this week, and the sport has been FIXED AND RIGGED perfectly for the AMAZING, but talentless defending-retriever he is. He does NOT have the hands or skill to return on REAL grass , (which he has NEVER played a single match on), and it's DISGRACEFUL that Wimbledon is soooo slow and high bouncing that Federer could produce MORE MAGIC than any 4 Wimbledon Finals combined......but still couldn't get enough by novack.

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      Tom 

      9 months ago

      Tim- Federer held the H2H lead against Djokovic until 34. Djokovic is only 32 now so H2H is meaningless. Of course Federer is better on grass. 8 Wimbledons to 5 isn’t close and Federer won the match when he was 30 and Djokovic 25 so of course Federer is GOAT.

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      Tim 

      9 months ago

      As a Djokovic fan I LOL every time someone claims Federer is the greatest of all time on grass and hardcourt. Forget the greatest, first try to equal your record against Djokovic on those two surfaces and then talk haha.

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      Greg 

      9 months ago

      The GOAT is definitely Federer. He is Tennis.

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      Randy 

      9 months ago

      Federer is the greatest of all time on grass and hardcourt and therefore the GOAT of tennis.

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      Gonzalo 

      9 months ago

      I believe that there is a very high probability that Nadal and Federer both own equally the 1st place ever among professional players. Both share about the same level of physical disability: Nadal with a weak knee and Federer with weak back muscles and back injuries. Both quantitatively speaking have accomplished very much the same. Both have superb style of tennis styles but of course quite different styles. Do to the age difference, we can not rely on the late results, say since about 9 years ago; remember that Federer is about 5 years older than Nadal and that is a lot in professional tennis and now Federer is about 38 which means he is a very old tennis player. We can mostly rely or based on their own performance independently one with respect to the other. Definitely we can perfectly argue that Nadal is the best tennis player ever on clay; that has no doubts. In the same way, Federer is the best tennis player on grass; no doubts. Remember that Djokovic is about 6 years younger than Federer and Federer has been for several years now a very old tennis player; unbelievable that he can still play. On hard courts recently Nadal has proven to be a highly competitive tennis player. I like also to include that to me, about 3 years ago, Djokovic has shown the best tennis game ever; yes, ever. No tennis player has shown a better tennis ability that Djokovic; Djokovic's tennis game used to resemble that of a robot; that is perfect. But nevertheless, quantitatively, Djokovic's results are significantly behind than Nadal and Federer, and for this reason. overall, Djokovic is behind the two best players. Other than that there is nothing to argue. I like to include that there have been wonderful tennis players that we should never forget even though were like stars of short life; for example like Del Potro, that when he was just 20 years old practically was a threat to all tennis players; not even the very best like Murray and Federer could handle Del Potro.

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      Jacob 

      9 months ago

      @Tom: I am sticking to what I know- which is that Nadal is hands down the GOAT! Federer owns Nadal on 2 out of 3 surfaces?? Lmao. Then why for over a decade was Nadal 9-6 against Federer on harcourt? Why is Nadal 8-6 overall in outdoor harcourt? Smh- kno ur facts. No matter how you try to massage the stats- it won’t change the fact that Nadal OWNS Federer- period!

      Also, wow what a great article u shared! The conclusion: Laver “thinks” Roger is GOAT because .. “Roger surpasses tennis, the world of sport, and sports in general in a way that no one in history has done before him” - haha what a load of fact-less crap. These are just feelings, opinions... no stats or facts or truth. Typical of a Federer fan, always says Federer is goat but never back it up with facts (just see how many comments below say Federer is goat and that’s it.. nothing to back it up)

      Want an honest answer, from one of the biggest sports related organization? Read and weep Nadal haters:

      https://www.espn.com/tennis/story/_/id/23784126/te...

      ESPN: Nadal not only King of Clay. But he’s the GOAT.

      Even Federer’s beloved Wimbledon had to stop pretending and finally admitted with some sense: “long live the King!”

      I’ll take a stats/fact based piece from the most popular, most subscribed to organization like ESPN’s article on why Nadal is GOAT.... vs. no name reporters, fans, has-been old tennis players who defend Federer based on “feelings” and “opinions” that have zero facts to defend their feelings!

      Per the words of ESPN and Wimbledon: Long Live the King, Long Live the GOAT- Long Live Rafael Nadal!!!

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      Shawn 

      9 months ago

      Federer by a wide margin. Awesome site.

      I like this one too:

      https://www.ultimatetennisstatistics.com/goatList?...

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      Tom 

      9 months ago

      Jacob- Federer owns 2 out of 3 surfaces against Nadal and is universally regarded as the GOAT by experts. Respect your opinion but please stick to what you know. You are obviously not a tennis commentator.

      https://www.tennis365.com/atp-tour/roger-federer-s...

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      Gonzalo 

      9 months ago

      I want to clarify since I was not understood. Nadal's disability is based on a congenital defect on his right foot; one of the bones in the ankle has very poor blood supply and for this reason it could break. That is why they have had to find special shoes that back then injured his knee. They had to work hard to overcome this disability. Yes, he could also have other type of ailments but the root of his main problem is his defect on the foot. Even more, if you observe how he walks, you could agree with me that the motion of his legs is not normal; his ankles look twisted.

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      Jacob 

      9 months ago

      @Fred:thanks for proving that u don’t know anything about tennis, or sports in general. Anyone who thinks there is a Michael Jordan, Tom Brady, Simone Biles equivalent in tennis clearly has never watched sports in detail.

      These other Goats have never been dominated by another player in their sport ... in the same generation ... and definitely not for OVER 15 YEARS!

      Even though I know Nadal is the GOAT, I would never say he is the MJ of tennis- because there is no such thing in tennis. It is a three headed race (N,F,D) with Nadal on top, for now.

      Nadal is 1 GS away from Federer but has a better overall win%, oh and dominated Federer for majority of their careers. FYI - MJ was 6-0 in championships finals and his dominance and success in such moments help make him the GOAT (even though he doesn’t have the most # of rings) Roger on the other hand is 4-10 in GS ... just against Nadal! Lmao

      Nadal is 10-4 against Federer and 9-6 against Djoker in such clutch moments!

      Nadal is undisputed the greatest of all time! No matter what Federer fans want to believe.. no matter what stats they spit out.. they cannot argue that Nadal has dominated their beloved Federer.

      A GOAT that has been dominated by another player in their sport in their generation for over a decade ... just does not exist! It defeats the whole purpose of the G in GOAT when you weren’t even the “greatest” in a 15 yr rivalry with another player in your generation- who happens to be 1 GS away from tying ur biggest achievement.

      Oh and Mary, you spelled Nadal’s name wrong ;)

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