Well, the title says it all. Sorry to tell you, folks, but Nadal will not be winning the US Open this year, much less making it past the semis. Why? Let's take a look.
As we all know, Nadal has just recently returned from his long recovery period. He has not played much tennis since his early elimination in Roland Garros, so naturally Nadal will be a bit rusty.
Second, the surface is entirely different from what Rafa last played on. A complete oppposite of the red clay of Roland Garros, the US Open is all hard court. Extended play on this unforgiving surface will not do Nadal's knee any good whatsoever.
Third, despite the fact that it was his first ATP tournament since his injury, Rafa did not display his agility and skill in Montreal, where he was beaten 7-6,6-1 by sixth seed Juan Martin Del Potro. Nadal started off playing decent tennis, but soon fell apart in the second set where he was broken 3 times. His overall performance fell sharply, which led me as a fan to believe that his knee was not holding up very well.
To put it simply, if Rafael Nadal is unable to keep it together for a 2 set match, there won't be much chance of us seeing another federer-nadal match in the final.