Jan/15

11

Disrespecting Mary Pierce Is An Injustice

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Justin Gimelstob, Mary Carillo and Lindsay Davenport were discussing on Tennis Channel Live about the Hall of Fame class this year: Sergi Bruguera, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, Amelie Mauresmo and Mary Pierce.

Mauresmo won two majors but the commentators were also lauding her decision to announce she was gay at age 19 as some kind of honorable achievement of bravery which added to her career legacy. Really? In political correct times I guess that’s the way it goes. We’ll accept it.

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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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Jan/15

1

Yes, 2015 Is Here And So Is The Hopman Cup

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The Hopman Cup is one of my favorite tournaments of the season. Seriously. I love this event and how it’s presented. This year’s star quality may be the best in Hopman history…

GROUP A

Team USA: Serena Williams & John Isner

Team Canada: Eugenie Bouchard & Vasek Pospisil

Team Czech Republic: Lucie Safarova & Adam Pavlasek

Team Italy: Flavia Pennetta & Fabio Fognini

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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

24

Biofile: The Brian Gottfried Interview

This is one of my favorite Biofiles of 2014, after you read it you will understand. Just classic…

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Status: Former ATP #3. Winner of 24 singles titles, 54 doubles titles. 1977 French Open finalist. Winner of three major doubles titles.

DOB: Jan. 27, 1952 In: Baltimore, MD

First Tennis Memory: “Orange Bowl juniors. We kept players at our house from Japan for the tournament. Eddie Herr approached my dad about housing players. I used to go watch them play and that’s how I started.”

Tennis Inspirations: “The Japanese players who started me [smiles]. I guess I really liked the old Australians, Roy Emerson is at the top of the list for me. Fitness was always a big part of his game. He was just such a physical player. And I loved it, that was sort of my M.O. when I was playing. I worked hard. He was at the top. Those guys were special. And eventually I played with them. And even now I do some corporate things with them, after the fact. It’s just a blast. And I picked the right heroes – they’re great guys.”

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Dec/14

20

Biofile: Zane Khan Interview

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7isO9iyRJFc

Meet one of the top 12 year olds in the United States, or perhaps, the world…

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davis cup

Switzerland’s exciting conquest of the Davis Cup this year inside a packed 27,000 seat soccer stadium in Lille, France is going to be a tough act to follow in 2015.

Sports betting site MTS reports that it’s unknown if superstars Roger Federer and Stan Wawrinka will commit to defending the Cup, as both may prioritize to add to their Grand Slam major title totals instead of devoting potentially four weeks of the season to winning a second Davis Cup. Mats Wilander interviewed both Federer and Wawrinka after their triumph in the final vs. France.

Another major absence will also be missed in this year’s competition: Struggling Spain has dropped from the World Group and is now being captained by former professional woman player Gala Leon. Leon controversially replaced former ATP World Number One and Davis Cup hero Carlos Moya – a move that Rafael Nadal publicly called “strange.”

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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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Dec/14

11

Fred Perry on Modern Tennis Part 2

One of the most memorable and fascinating passages of tennis journalism I have ever read was about the meeting of author Eliot Berry and tennis legend Fred Perry. Berry, for those who don’t know, is the author of “Topspin” – one of the most enjoyable books ever written about tennis, in my opinion.

Berry interviewed the then 85-year-old Perry at Wimbledon in 1994.

Berry had to work for it though. “Look. I’m sorry. I just can’t talk to you know,” said Perry. “SKY TV wants me this afternoon. This German TV crew thinks I can open the door for them at Wimbledon if I let them interview me this morning but I can’t and I won’t. I’m doing BBC radio at noon for the rest of the day. It’s just not a good time to talk.”

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