Roger Federer: Swiss Legend Will Not Challenge Jimmy Connors' Title Record

Ian Hanford@Ian_HanfordFeatured ColumnistMay 29, 2012

PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 28:  Roger Federer of Switzerland serves in the men's singles first round match between Roger Federer of Switzerland and Tobias Kamke of Germany during day two of the French Open at Roland Garros on May 28, 2012 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)
Clive Brunskill/Getty Images

Roger Federer's 74 career tournament titles will never amount to Jimmy Connors' 109 tourney championships.

Federer has been a professional tennis player for roughly 14 years. That means he has won around 5.3 tournament titles per year of competition.

With his current pace, Federer would need to play on his championship level for seven more years. That just isn't realistic.

This is why.

Age

Federer will be 37 by the time he breaks Connors' record, if he were to stay on his current pace. His age is already discouraging, given his small setback in success, but it will be worse in a year or two.

It is tough to believe that Federer will win five titles a year, for seven more years. If he were in his prime, maybe his early 20s, he could possibly do it. However, being 30 years old now greatly diminishes that possibility.

Federer is certainly a contender in this year's French Open, but his longevity should be questioned. Other players have caught up to his skill level, and are able to use his age to their advantage.

Which brings up to the other players in today's tennis world.

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Stiff Competition

Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal will give Federer enough obstacles to overcome in the next few years. That doesn't even include any other solid players now, or anyone who may emerge.

Djokovic and Nadal are already on Federer's level. Give them—Djokovic especially—a few more years of seasoning and they will only become a tougher challenge.

PARIS, FRANCE - MAY 28:  Novak Djokovic of Serbia serves in his men's singles first round match against Potito Starace of Italy during day 2 of the French Open at Roland Garros on May 28, 2012 in Paris, France.  (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Matthew Stockman/Getty Images

Federer will need to traverse a tightrope of tough competitors and increasingly difficult odds in order to chase down Connors' record. Despite Federer's superior talent, the situation just isn't in his favor.

He still has a few more solid touring years ahead of him, but not up to the caliber of his prime playing years.

The idea of Federer breaking Connors' record is nice for Federer fans and fans of modern tennis, but it isn't a realistic goal.

Instead, tennis fans will have to settle for Federer's already-elite career resume.