A very nice post by Pete on Nole's Shanghai triumph, Roger's transition year, and Rafa's manifest destiny. But in particular, I loved this:
When it comes to this game, it seems that there's a little bit of the kid left in all of us. One moment, we're gorging on ice cream (okay, feel free to post your favorite flavor - I'm going with Ben and Jerry's Cherry Garcia), the next, after the tummy ache has worn off, we're clamoring for. . . more ice cream.
I too am exhausted by this tennis season, and I admit, last week I just wanted it all to be over. But now it's Monday and I'm sad that I don't have awesome shit to write about. Boo.
Tignor also weighs in on the TMC, the lengthy season destructive effect, and Nole's dominant performance:
As he had in his angry win over Roddick at the U.S. Open, Djokovic reminded fans yesterday of why he'd been called the future of tennis as 2008 began. He was hitting with absurd depth on his backhand. He was using his drop shot not as a do-or-die point-ender, but as a sane, mid-point change of pace. He was drilling his on-the-run forehand like Pete Sampras in his prime. He was showing off his daredevil flexibility on defense. He was taking everything as early as possible, changing the direction of the ball whenever he could, and keeping it far from the center of the court. I’ve rarely seen anyone play a less predictable, or more watchable, two sets of baseline tennis. When Djokovic got his feet under him and had time to set up—which was most of the time—there was a sense that he could do anything he wanted with the ball from any position on the court. For the first time since June, Djokovic looked like a streamlined Federer for the future.
Perhaps most encouraging, though, was Djokovic’s mind-set. For months he had floundered through important matches, lacking the controlled edginess that has always produced his best tennis. Rather than mastering his frustration—which, more than with Federer or Nadal, is an integral part of his competitive makeup—he seemed helpless to combat his anger and ready to throw in the towel at the first sign that it might not be his day. For a set and a half, Davydenko failed to plant a seed of frustration in Djokovic's head. The Serb shook off his few misses, kept firing into the corners, and added more topspin for safety on crucial points in the second set. If anything, his edge was a positive one: After winning a point at 3-2 in the second, Djokovic leaped and punched the air in an apparent apparent tribute to his fallen comrade Nadal.