Nadal: Grunting His Way to Greatness

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I’m really into Nadal’s grey and pink outfit this year.

The talk at the start of the U.S. Open was all about the possible Rafa and Roger showdown in the quarter finals. Sadly this never came to pass as Fed’s disappointing year ended by him being thrown to the curb by some guy named Tommy Robredo.

It’s probably for the best though, as it would have been too painful to watch Federer endure another Rafa beat-down. I am starting to believe that by 2017, many will acknowledge Rafa, and not Roger, as tennis’s G.O.A.T. (Greatest of All Time).

Tonight, Rafa squares off against Djokovic once again, continuing the biggest and longest head-to-head rivalry in the modern age of tennis. Rafa is arguably the hottest player in tennis and holds a 21-15 lead in match-ups with Djoko. It’s not a huge advantage, but Rafa still has the upper hand.

With Rafa being healthy and in his full-on beast mode, I like his chances of lifting his second U.S. trophy tonight. Now, let’s look at the tennis landscape as the dust settles after the year’s final major: Rafa is your player of the year with two majors, the No. 1 ranking and his health.

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Rafa celebrates his U.S. Open win in 2010.

But more importantly he now has 13 MAJORS! (13!) Why is no one talking about this? If he can pull this last major out, the great Fed and his 17 majors will finally be in Rafa’s reach. Four majors is a lot (just ask that whiny bitch Eldrick Woods) but I think we can bank on Rafa winning two more French Opens in the next few years. This puts his total to 15 majors and counting, and still leaves him 3 to 4 more years of playing majors at a high level.

By the way, I believe this fear is what keeps Roger going. Everyone talks about him walking away, but I think he feels that one more, just one more major, could put things a little more out of reach. But if Rafa wins tonight and with his dominance on clay, his march towards Federer (and all-time greatness) should become the game’s biggest plotline.

Be afraid Roger, be very afraid.

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