Though impossible to provide equal conditions and technology, we will allow each player to be at his peak and have him face off in summer 2012 with the technology and strings of his choice. Feel free to argue your case on this.
The following is a playoff format to remember these champions.
There will be only four top seeds, determined by total championship success. The top half of the draw will feature #1 seeded Roger Federer and #4 seeded Jimmy Connors. The bottom half of the draw will have #2 Pete Sampras and #3 John McEnroe. (Note: I had to discount Connors’ two USO Slams on grass and clay, but gave him the nod over Lendl’s three victories.)
All of the match-ups were randomly drawn, so this is one of many possible brackets.
1. Roger Federer vs. Ivan Lendl
Marat Safin vs. Boris Becker
Andre Agassi vs. Rafael Nadal
4. Jimmy Connors vs. Patrick Rafter
3. John McEnroe vs. Lleyton Hewitt
Novak Djokovic vs. Mats Wilander
Stefan Edberg vs Andy Roddick
2. Pete Sampras vs. Juan Martin del Potro
The following 15 slides will briefly look at these opening matches and remaining possibilities. It’s meant to be a tennis fan’s guide to the timeless match-ups and debates that make the sport the great discussion that it is, so each slide will end with a question rather than an answer.