Dan M

Feb/15

23

Gulbis, Dubai & The Rise of Harry

Ernests_Gulbis_02Yes, Ernie dropped No. 5 in a row losing today to Istomin in Dubai. What is happening to Ernie? He said he’s got no feel for his shots and he’s playing worse in practice now than he is in matches. Ernie hasn’t won a match in 2015 after winning 41 in 2014. He should be in the prime of his career. He’s 26. He broke into the Top 10 last year. Tennis is a funny sport.

How about Djoko saying he thinks Dubai should be a Masters Event. But I turn on the tube today watching Gasquet-Seppi and there’s like 50 people in the stands. I’ve got a feeling when I get out to Indy Wells in a couple of weeks for the first day there’s going to be like 10,000 people there if not much more.

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Feb/15

16

Rick Macci Has His Next Prodigy

index It’s been 27 years since Rick Macci took on the 10-year-old Jennifer Capriati and helped her construct one of the most lethal games in women’s tennis. At only 12, Capriati won the USTA National Girls’ Junior 18’s tournament, making her the youngest player ever to win the event, a record that still stands. Five years later, Richard Williams chose Macci over Nick Bollettieri to train his daughters, Venus and Serena, and Macci, by many people’s account, took two unpolished girls and put them on the road to superstardom.

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safe_image.phpScoop, you dooped us! You told us at D.C. last year that Kozlov, though a year younger than Donaldson, was the better player. It appears this isn’t so as JD took out SK 6-0 in their second set of the opening round in Memphis. Donaldson is on fire these days after winning the Maui Challenger recently and now upending Kozlov.

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Feb/15

3

Why Is Ryan Sweeting Playing Pro Tennis?

527356_262618610515548_702133873_nSince Sweeting, the 27-year-old who reached a career-high of No. 64 in 2011, has returned to the pro tour this year, he’s won a total of five games in two matches. Yesterday he got blitzed in the Dallas Challenger, 0 and 2 to an Italian I’ve never heard of. Sweeting, who married the actress Kaley Cuoco from the popular TV show, “The Big Bang Theory,” has not played pro tennis in almost one year when he suffered a back injury. He’s still only 27…

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10615639_10204837410920250_3766632787340078753_nI’ve said this before on Tennis-Prose.com, Jeff Salzenstein, the lefty out of Denver and Stanford University, was one of my favorite players when he played on the tour. He was only the second player after Dick Norman to crack the Top 100 after the age of 30 and he played the game with an explosiveness and a smile. He looked like he was having a good time out there and he was capable of some startlingly good tennis. What also attracted me to his game and journey was that I met the guy for the first time at Bikram Yoga headquarters (the old demolished one now on La Cienega Blvd.) taking a class. I know other pro tennis players practice yoga, but Jeff’s the first and only player I ever met taking a class at a studio. This was in 2002 when I was getting trained to become a Bikram Yoga teacher, and I think I startled Jeff when I came up to him before class and said, “You’re Jeff Salzenstein, right?”

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Dec/14

27

Who’s The One Player To Watch In 2015?

10455366_647740508650905_7130606787426908427_nLast year, who would’ve thought Stan Wawrinka, the 28-year-old seemingly-perpetual brooding bridesmaid and doormat to RF, a player who’s parents work on an organic farm helping handicapped people (you can’t make this up) and who only three years prior had lost to Donald Young in the second round of the US Open (a match I watched and thought, “Wawa, you’re a serious underachiever, but another underachiever who broke the mold like Soderling wouldn’t even lose to DY at the US Open. Get a grip on yourself!”), would beat Nadal, a player who he’d lost to all 12 times they played (Wawa had never even won a set in their matches), in the Aussie O finals?

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Dec/14

15

The Knicks & Izzie, QBall and Sock

safe_image.phpI’m attending the Knicks-Mavericks game tomorrow night at Madison Square Garden on a press pass for this very web site. I do have an advantage when I ask for a press pass in that I’ve attended literally more than 100 Knicks games on press passes and I did write books with Walt Clyde Frazier and John Starks. But I was a bit surprised when the media relations gentleman, Jonathan Supranowitz, granted my request. I told him I was writing a story on the Knicks and men’s American tennis.

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10600497_1469123586693272_7312589897381177432_nI’m not a big fan of Twitter, but some of the posts related to the Izzie hiring Gimel announcement are quite funny. And you know I love poking fun at Mr. Pomposity, Justin G. So without further ado, here are some of the best posts today:

Going to be fun to watch Gimelstob try to teach Isner how to return.

I am sorry but that is a really bad hire by John Isner. Gimelstob? Of all people. Just no. (I have to admit, this one is kind of my personal favorite).

It will be funny if Isner wins Roland Garros next year.

Oh Isner, why are you giving Gimelstob more reasons to be seen?

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Sep/14

30

The “Are You Serious” Matches

10711107_10152720548754487_7720726109567884958_nThis is another of the weeks during the tennis season where you look at some results and say, “Are you serious?” Usually the phrase is “Are you kidding?” but in tennis, because of Johnny Mac, it’s “Are you serious?”

Look at some of these results:

From Japan

The guy with the hardest name in tennis to spell, Przysiezny, beat Tsonga 7-6 in the third

Stan Wawa continues his odd season losing to Ito in straight sets

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Sep/14

23

Ymer Versus McGee in Napa Challenger

photo1_1361891418.33.215.335x225.bg000000.far1Oh, what it would be like to be in the Napa Valley, 100 miles north of San Francisco, this week for the little tennis tournament up there. Such intrigue, such scenery, such wine! Sam Qball Querrey is playing in the event. Marcos Bagdhatis, Marcos Giron, the NCAA champ, Mike Ironman Russell, Ryan Harry Harrison and Denis Kudla. But the first-round match I’m most interested in is between a 27-year-old Irishman who just made waves at the US OPEN AND a 18-year-old Swede (yes, I said Swede, because there hasn’t been a top Swedish player or any kind of Swedish player since Andrea Vinciguerra, no I meant Robin Soderling, I just like writing Andreas Vinciguerra), named Ymer Elias.

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