2012 Olympics: What Gold Medal Match Defeat Means for Roger Federer's Legacy

Dan Kaneko@Danpard117Correspondent IAugust 6, 2012

LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 05:  Silver medalist Roger Federer (L) of Switzerland, gold medalist Andy Murray (R) of Great Britain celebrate during the medal ceremony for the Men's Singles Tennis match on Day 9 of the London 2012 Olympic Games at the All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on August 5, 2012 in London, England. Murray defeated Federer in the gold medal match in straight sets 2-6, 1-6, 4-6.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Seventeen Grand Slam titles, 290 weeks as world No. 1, 75 career singles titles, six ATP World Tour Finals titles, $72,918,077 career prize money and one Olympic Silver medal.

So the last mention on the above-mentioned list isn’t exactly considered a highlight on the resume of Switzerland’s Roger Federer, but don’t tell him that.

“Don’t feel too bad for me,” said Federer following a 6-2, 6-1, 6-4 drubbing by Great Britain’s Andy Murray (per Reuters).  “I felt like I won my silver; I didn’t lose it.”

For a man who has accomplished so much in his sport, what more can he do? 

Well, after the conclusion of Sunday’s Men’s Singles Gold Medal Match at the 2012 Olympics, Federer is still without a singles gold medal, and with his 31st birthday on Wednesday, he probably never will have one.

For months Federer has discussed the significance of this year’s Olympic games, especially since it was being played at the venue where he took the tennis world by storm.  On Sunday, he was simply just the second-best player on the court.

So what’s next for Federer?  Will he be back for the 2016 games in Rio and make one last late-career push to win his coveted gold medal?  It’s unlikely, even though he thinks it’s possible.

But so what if Roger never completes his golden career slam?  Will anyone really point to that as a shortcoming on his resume?

Roger has been the best player on tour for the last decade and is widely considered to be the greatest player to ever play the sport.  This is a guy who seems to break a new record every time he steps out onto the court.

It has truly been a privilege to watch Federer’s career throughout, and if it were to all end tomorrow, would anyone really think that he didn’t do enough?

Hopefully for us, his career doesn’t end tomorrow because there will never be another Roger Federer.  No one will ever dominate the sport with such sheer elegance.  No one will ever keep such composure when stuck in the tightest of holes.  No one will ever garner so much love and respect worldwide. 

We may very well be watching the final days of the greatest player of all time, so enjoy him while he is still around.