We all agree, NOW, that Roger Federer is the greatest Men's tennis player who has ever played the game. You know the numbers, so I am now going to go into them. I am going to touch a subject that Rick Riley kind of brought up in an article he wrote on ESPN a couple weeks back. Rick wrote about his disdain of the lack of class displayed by some of the biggest names in sports when they celebrate victories. One in particular, Roger Federer. Rick did not like the way Roger wore a sweater with the number 15 on it after beating Andy Roddick in this year's Wimbeldon Final. Granted it was small and towards the bottom of the sweater, but what Rick was trying to say was it was staged and not really spontaneous.
What I wish to discuss is this celebration at Wimbeldon. I really rooted for Roger at the French to win his first French and when he did, I said to myself that he is now the best. Coming into Wimbeldon, Roger was the man to beat as Nadal was out due to injury. Roger cruised to the finals and Roddick fought his way to them. The final was awesome. Roddick had a chance to win the second set to go up 2-0, but Federer pulls it out. The match goes 5 sets and eventually Federer breaks Roddick's serve to win the match. Again, we all saw the replay...yada yada.
But what some may not have seen was the absolute lack of class displayed by Federer when he accepted his trophy. He actually had the gall to wear a sweater with the number 15, to signify that he had broken Pete Sampras' record of 14 GS singles titles. The person interviewing him pointed it out. Now he seemed embarrassed by it, but he still WORE it. Now I realize he has been playing tennis since he could stand up and hold a racquet, but come on! You do not insult your opponent by wearing something like that. What you do is you wear that during the post match interviews OFF the court. I was extremely disappointed with the way Federer handled that situation. I can no longer watch him play. He disgusts me. I found it to be arrogant and insulting. Did Pete wear a number 14 when he broke the previous record? Classless and arrogant. That is the only thing I remember from that Wimbeldon now and really wish I could remember something else.
I felt awful for Roddick. Federer has the nerve to say to Roddick, "I was in your position last year." Roddick put it best, you have 4 more titles, though. Federer had no answer to that. Again, Federer has won so much and gotten used to winning that he has no idea how to comfort an opponent. He cries like a bitch when loses and cries at awkward times. Nadal has owned him and he knows it. If Nadal is across the net in an GS final, Federer knows that he has a strong chance of losing the final. If Nadal would stop grinding himself to death, Federer would be scared out of his mind.
I don't care how many sponsors you have, having your monogram on all your gear including the plastic that covers your new racquets is ridiculous. The RF suite in NYC is even more annoying. I hate to say it, but he is actually more irritating than McEnroe was when he played. JohnnyMac did it with the mouth. Federer just does it with a bunch of odd, smaller things that are so insane you just shake your head.
He is a nice guy overall, I just wish he would think before he would do these sort of things. Maybe fatherhood would put some perspective in his life, but I doubt it.