One person's thoughts may change the world
Serena Williams is the baddest tennis player on the planet. Perhaps the all-time female tennis player ever, regardless of what era you’ve witnessed. I’ve watched her tennis career since her pro inception, and she is hands down is the best. The best, the most beautiful, most spectacular, the absolute best at tennis. I know her game so well I can predict almost every shot she will try, and what shots she should not try. I’ve analyzed her game to a point that I could even coach up some of the few flaws in her game, but, who am I? To her I’m just another fan, but this woman has got it all, and here is why.
Serena suffers from what Hank Aaron once suffered from, ridicule. Of course not at the level of what Hank had to endure, but similar. Called out of her name on more than one occasion. Talked about behind her back by other people and competitors. Had to overcome many injuries and still played at a high level. She has been criticized for not playing a robust schedule of tennis when she was younger. The constant references to her physique ( to which I think is gorgeous). Father and family experienced name calling while on the circuit. Hank broke Babe Ruth’s record under the pressure of his family be shot at. Serena’s up for a Serena slam if she wins Wimbledon, on the verge of breaking a record. Her family is not in danger, but, she is not being revered near anything like her white counterparts would be. Yet, she is still the baddest tennis player on the planet. And for all her well-crafted and well-spoken post-game interviews, she carries a silent chip on her shoulder, and she channels that energy well to the court, and to championships.
She’s so good, she gets bored. What I mean is, she loses focus in that second set against opponents who have no business even being on the court with her. If I ever get a chance to meet her, I’m going to say two words, “Focus and concentration”. She inadvertently lets them back in the game, and has to win that third set in dramatic fashion at times. She needs to work on her lateral hip movement to help her in those volleys that she could easily win, but decides not to chase the ball. Her drop ball placement needs working on, trying for the cute cross court weak slice instead of keeping the ball away, but in play. She needs to clock her serves down a mile or two, to save energy, and pace herself. She depends upon the big shot once too often. In her Wimbledon game before playing her sister, she had 31 unforced errors. Wow, too many, and yet she still pulled it out. She is amazing, and is the freakin’ best.
In her match against Venus, I was actually pulling for Venus. There is something about Venus’s game that fits Wimbledon perfectly. Long lean and powerful, I thought she would play the corners and make Serena volley, which she doesn’t want to do, at times. But, not this time. Serena took her apart, in two sets. Here were two great champions on center court, going at it, two black girls who were trained by their father in Compton. An amazing story. Serena won, and is playing on.
So, I’m writing this before the final match, before the outcome, and I’m fairly sure she’s going to win it. If she doesn’t, so what, she’s already won the Australian and the French open. She’s the number 1 tennis player in the world.
I didn’t finish this before the final and as I expected, Serena won. She dropped the first and second game, struggle with her first serve, but won it in two sets, and afterwards gave an admiral tribute to her opponent.
Now on Mike and Mike, greeny was trying to put into context on how great a player she is, and whether she could be considered the greatest player of all time, regardless of male or female. He even said she probably could not beat any of the top 20 male tennis players of the world.
At times you have to tolerate sportscasters like greeny. Never competed in anything but a writing contest, never coached, basically the Emanuel Kant of the sports world. Does greeny know anything that speaks to courage outside of observing it? Has greeny ever coached up the best and worst players on a team? Has greeny ever been on a rain soaked football field with half the lights out against your main inner city rival fighting for a playoff spot? Has greeny ever been on center court at Wimbledon down two sets and have to dig your way out of it?
Serena could probably beat many in the top 20 men’s division of tennis. But why even go there? Why does the designation of “the greatest” be only designated by the male gender? Simply put, she’s Serena Williams, the greatest tennis player of all time….
oh, and by the way…