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Men singles defending champion Novak Djokovic
Novak Djokovic capped his incredible season last year with a win over then-defending champion Rafael Nadal in an epic final to win his first U.S. Open title and third Grand Slam title of 2011.
Djokovic's bid for a second consecutive championship in New York and fifth major title in two years could end happy, as he will have a very favorable draw most probably thanks to Nadal withdrawing due to tendinitis on his left knee.
In the top of his section, No. 10 seed Juan Monaco or 2003 champ and No. 20 seed Andy Roddick should be the players to challenge No. 7 seed Juan Martin Del Potro. Whoever comes out the winner should be in the quarterfinals against Djokovic.
Djokovic's draw doesn't feature a semifinal match against five-time champion Roger Federer. They had played in the semis at the Open every year since 2008. Now, their potential meeting in the final would be their first in a Slam since the 2007 U.S. Open.
Federer is back to being the No. 1 player in the world after his win at Wimbledon and just showd his best game while winning in Cincinnati over Djokovic in the finals.
He won't have an easy draw to make it to the finals. Even if he makes it, will he have enough gas left in the tank to win his 18th Grand Slam championship?
No. 25 seed and two-time quarterfinalist Fernando Verdasco will likely wait for him in the third round, while former top-10 player Mardy Fish could be his match in the fourth round and then, the ever-dangerous No. 6 seed Tomas Berdych would follow in the quarterfinals.
Should he make it to the semifinals, he will likely need to go through his Olympic finals conqueror, No. 3 seed Andy Murray. This is a match that everyone will be looking forward to, after their Wimbledon-Olympics finals doubleheader.
Murray will also be spent if he reaches the semifinals. No. 30 seed Feliciano Lopez could face him on the third round and big-hitting No. 15 seed Milos Raonic, who has a win in their only officially played match, should be waiting for him in the fourth round.
In the quarterfinals he will most certainly be facing either No. 5 seed Jo-Wilfried Tsonga, No. 12 seed Marin Cilic or No. 17 seed Kei Nishikori. While he has winning records against all three, neither matchup will be a cakewalk.
David Ferrer should thank fellow Nadal for his No. 4 seed and getting the easiest quarter in the men's draw. But his reward will be a potential semifinal against Djokovic.
His quarter is filled with players that he has dominated with one exception: his possible round of 32 opponent, No. 28 seed Mikhail Youzhny.
Ferrer has three wins in seven matches against Youzhny, two of them on clay. Youzhny has won their only outdoor hard-court match and three-of-four on indoor hard courts.
If Ferrer goes through, he has winning records against his two likely opponents in the quarterfinals.
On the top side, Tipsarevic will possibly face Viktor Troicki in a battle of Serbians in the round of 32.
Ferrer has two wins in three matches against No. 8 seed Janko Tipsarevic and three wins in four matches against big-serving No. 9 seed John Isner.