Quick - who's the best athlete ever?
Michael Jordan? Nope.
Emmitt Smith? Not even close.
It's Roger Federer, everyone. Surprised? Why don't you take a closer look...
After his crushing defeat of Andy Roddick yesterday, Roger Federer now has nine grand slams. His age? Only twenty-five years old. Does anyone other than me realize the significance of this?
Roger Federer is now the reigning Australian Open, Wimbledon, and US Open champion, and he doesn't seem to be slowing down. So let's say for example he wins three grand slams a year, as this is his current pace. That puts him in easy contention of Pete Sampras' 14 grand slam records, which he could easily achieve (if he wins three slams a year) in two years. TWO YEARS?! At only twenty-seven years old!
And for further comparison, Pete Sampras won his last grand slam (the US Open) in 2002, when he was thirty-one years old. So let's say Roger's grand slam pace falls a bit and he only wins one a year after 2008 and retires at 31 years old. He still will end up with 20 grand slams when he retires, completely obliterating the previous record.
It's sad that tennis isn't a bigger sport in the US, because if it was, Roger's greatness would be known to everyone. Sure, he's been amazing, but I just don't think people realize how amazing he will be. Everyone compares him to Tiger Woods, but there really isn't any real comparison. Roger plays a much more challenging physical game which takes a lot more from a player than golf does. Roger is also only 25 with such an impressive record, while Tiger is 30. Tiger still has many years left in his golf career because, since golf isn't as challenging, he will likely be able to play well past 31 years old. Roger on the other hand, will have to retire much earlier, which makes his grand slam total that much more impressive.
As News 10 Now puts it, how many 25-year olds have you ever heard of that have been deemed the greatest ever? None. That in itself puts Roger in a class of his own.
I hope people outside the tennis world start taking notice that Roger Federer is something more than just another tennis player. After yesterday's US Open win, he became the first player to win three consecutive Wimbledons and three consecutive US Opens. And again, I hate to compare Federer to Tiger Woods, but Tiger's never done anything close to that, especially not as young as 25 years old. It's gotten to the point now where, whenever Roger enters into a tournament, people aren't surprised when he blows past everyone (and I mean that quite literally. Roger lost only two sets during the entire US Open Championship) and wins the championship.
All I ask is that people start becoming aware of this amazing athlete and start making other people aware. It's not fair that such a great sportsman is receiving so little attention, especially when compared to all the negative attention other athletes get in the US. Instead of showing Marcus Vick holding someone up with a gun, Sportscenter should instead be doing half-hour specials on Roger Federer - the best athlete ever.