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How would a match between a 25 year-old Pete Sampras and current Novak Djokovic play out?  I think Djokovic takes it but I'm not quite sure.

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Sampras wins on grass and fast indoor courts, Djokovic wins on other surface types, especially clay. Djokovic would win on Australian Open surface, Rebound Ace.

Seems Djokovic wins each match up of skills. While Pete's serve was very tough, Dj is the best returner I've ever seen and I expect would fare well enough to get the breaks he needs. Dj serve while not on par with Pete's, is still better than Pete's returns imo.  Once the point is in play, it's hands down Joker with a strong advantage on both wings along with movement.

Pete seems to always compete well, but would be reduced to looking for high risk answers just to make it interesting. Pete would have to be in top serving form to take a match from DJ.

I think ya'll are giving way too much credit to Djokovic.  Pete is great.  Knew how to play the points.  Don't discount him. 

I'm not sure Djokovic would be able to hit clean passing shots off Sampras' heavy ball serve. That's what I'd worry about. Plus, don't forget Pete's running forehand. That's one less corner for Djoko to hit to. 

Sorry I can't agree, as I'm a big Sampras fan, but no reason for DJ to hit clean winners off the returns, because DJ will dominate 80% of the rally points. He just needs to get them back solid. This is also when Pete's serve tends to falter a bit; when the returns keep coming back. It works him even more than clean winner returns do.

DJ can hit to that running Fh and then he will take the reply to that running Fh cross court which will then be wide open.

Yeah, but if Pete serves 65% first serves, then there is no rally with Djoko. Pete wins with the volley and the match is close.

If I remember correctly, that running forehand was next to unreachable. Pete would hit it screaming up the line or way crosscourt. Will Novak be able to reach those balls, doing the splits and sliding, bending at the waist forwards? lol

Let us also not forget Pete's attacking net play.  That added pressure, would totally disrupt Dj's game as well.

Roger is better than Pete coming to net and he has not found that a good plan.

Pete can serve 70% and there would be plenty of rallys. DJ is very hard to ace

and 121mph won't get it done f/ aces on many of todays players, much less DJ.

Sorry, Chuck, but Pete is WAY better than Roger coming to net. Roger doesn't volley as well and his serve isn't as heavy. Roger never gets as close to the net either. Pete had 4500 revolutions per minute on that serve! I bet Pete would serve that twist high, and Djoko would have to reach hard with the two hander. If Agassi couldn't return Sampras' serve when it was hot, I don't see Djoko doing much better.

Even McEnroe said Nadal volleys better than Fed. I've seen Fed hit volleys with not much stick on them. Pete had more technique on the volley. He could drive them, stayed lower on the half volleys, and could put away the high ones. Fed never puts away the high ones with as much authority.

Sampras would without a doubt defeat Djoko on any fast/low bouncing court. It would be absolutely no contest. Probably on other surfaces too.

Especially old sampras+new equipment. oh my god man.

Not saying it would be domination or anything, but all of my money would be on pistol pete.

I agree that Rafa has a better volley than Fed by a slight margin. Shame we don't get to see more of it, but Fed is close and still gets the edge on Pete in my book with the volley. Pete mishit more drop volleys than anyone and it worked so well on the grass. 

Imo you guys just don't remember how Pete struggled if his serve didn't carry him and you remember the rest of his game in light of how he was when the serve was steamrolling things and setting the table. Agassi was a great returner, but mainly for how he punished mistakes into his strike zone. The flip side was that Agassi was often aced, which played well for Pete. DJ has a much, much broader talent on return, as he is extremely hard to ace, but still can punish returns like Agassi. 

Best guide is how at 19 Fed was able to beat Pete on grass in a major when Pete was still the man to beat on grass, along with how Pete was never as totally dominant as DJ or Fed. Pete was always beatable (mainly about how serve was going) and had a losing record against a couple of players who were not near the level of Fed, DJ and Nadal. It's a fun discussion, but for me, my man Pete is not going to fair well with Fed or DJ in top form, just as Pete struggled with Ferreira, Bruguera, Hewitt, Stich,  Krajicek, etc...

Players who return well and have a solid ground game.

It's all fun to discuss though : )

Well I definitely think we have found our new bromance leader for Djoko.  Boy are we blindly in love.  No way he beats Pete.  I think your memory must be slightly deviated.  As Tim mentions, Pistol's serve and volley game are head and shoulder's above Roger and Rafa.  With new equipment, Pete's serve becomes even heavier, and the volleys even crisper.  Pete wins. 


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