It seems like the name “Novak Djokovic” comes up quite often in this blog. Whether it’s to discuss his near perfect 2011 season or to take a peek into his private life, it is clear, as tennis fans we can’t, nor seem to want to, escape Novak Djokovic.
With another win this week, this time at the Sony Ericsson Open in Miami over poor Andy Murray, it’s pretty clear that Djokovic is ready for another historic season. With this tournament win he now possesses a staggering 90-8 since the beginning of the 2011 season. We have become all to accustom to the gaudy stats, the near inhuman play, and the signature Novak grin after nearly every tournament. So what’s to stop him from doing the impossible and winning every Grand Slam this year?
Since all I talk about on this blog is Novak Djokovic, lets take a minute to size up the rest of the field. Andy Murray, Djokovic’s opponent in the final, has been a perennial runner up. It’s tough to watch a man with so much talent and guile fall over and over to the other big three when it really matters. It’s hard to imagine Murray mounting any sort of resistance in the near future especially with Djokovic playing at such a high level. Murray didn’t even have to play the round before with Nadal pulling out of the semi-final. Really, not even a set? With three days rest? It’s okay, we all get it now too Andy. Djokovic is just better.
Speaking of Nadal that’s another worrying knee injury, another tournament pulled out of, and another Djokovic win. The worry is that this knee injury is chronic, something Nadal has openly voiced as a recurring problem for him. I don’t have any doubt that “The King of Clay” will be ready for his favorite tournament, the French Open, where he has won six times. The French however, is the only Grand Slam Novak hasn’t won, and the historical implications of holding all four Grand Slams at once is something that is not lost on Djokovic or anyone else.
With Federer losing to Roddick twice in a month, and Roddick unable to advance past the quarters once again, using the transitive property, it’s clear they both stink (really they are just ancient in tennis years). Mardy looked like a Fish out of water (see what I did there?) in his loss to Juan Monaco in Miami, validating my concern for the state of American tennis. Honestly, I still expect Federer to compete (he’s still quite good), Nadal to show up when it counts, and for Murray to well, give it go. It would be one thing for Djokovic to hold all four Grand Slam titles at a single time, but to win all of them in the same season? Don’t put it past him.