Lil' Wayne is a tennis fan apparently. And he loves Rafa. From his blog at ESPN The Magazine:
Besides the Packers, my favorite teams are the Red Sox, the Lakers and the Boston Bruins. I also love tennis. I had a lot of people over to my place to watch the Wimbledon final this year, and we went crazy. I love Federer but Nadal is my favorite. He's the man. I love his motivation and his heart is big. He leaves it on the court. And when I found out he still lives with his family despite his success, that was it for me. That's unbelievable right there. That just goes to show you where his heart is at, how much love he has. So we were watching that match, and nobody thought he was gonna win. Everybody was telling me how he hadn't beat Federer on the hard court and he could only do it on clay but I never had any doubts. I knew his heart was gonna do it for him, and it did.
Is Rafa the tennis player of the people? I think there is an argument to be made that he's the Proletariat to Fed's Bourgeoisie. I know Fed fans will rail on me for saying that but I really don't mean that as a slight at all to Fed. He plays a beautiful, graceful, elegant game. I kind of feel like I should be sipping brandy and listening to Mozart when he plays. He never looks rattled, never looks like he's sweating, he's just...elegant. And to be fair, Fed has bought into this whole bourgie aura. Who wore black tuxedo shorts at the US Open, or a cashmere cardigan at Wimbly?
This is why I can see how Fed appeals to the tennis purist. He plays the game the way I think people imagine the game should be played. It's balletic, graceful, and effortless.
But it seems to me that Rafa is the "people's player". He works so damn hard and shows it through his intensity and effort. He's aesthetically a pure athlete, strong and explosive and hits the ball with brute force. I'm just talking about perception here, as obviously Fed is an incredible athlete as well. But Rafa looks like a football player who happens to play tennis. He brings that kind of fire to the court.
All this is to say, I'm really happy we have both of them. I think they appeal to different demographics and I do think that Rafa is good for the growth of the game. He makes tennis look like a physical sport, and that appeals to certain people, myself included.
Go ahead, flame me in the comments. Just my thoughts.