For the first time since 2016, a men's singles Grand Slam final does not feature one of Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal or Novak Djokovic.
On Sunday, Dominic Thiem or Alexander Zverev will take the next step forward in their career and earn a first-ever Grand Slam title from the U.S. Open men's singles final.
The No. 2 and No. 5 seeds have come close to adding their names to the illustrious list of major winners, but neither has finished the deal yet.
Thiem is in his fourth Grand Slam final, while Zverev will make his debut in a major title match.
Whichever player wins inside Arthur Ashe Stadium on Sunday afternoon will become the first man to win his first major title since Marin Cilic did so at the 2014 U.S. Open.
US Open Men's Final Information
Date: Sunday, September 13
Start Time: 4 p.m. ET
Live Stream: ESPN.com and ESPN app.
No. 2 Dominic Thiem over No. 5 Alexander Zverev
Thiem holds significant advantages over Zverev in a few key categories.
The second-seeded Austrian has felt the pressure of a Grand Slam final before, with losses to Nadal at the 2018 and 2019 French Open and Djokovic at the 2020 Australian Open. Thiem won just three of those 12 sets, but his most recent loss to Djokovic was his best performance in a major final, as it went five sets.
Thiem possesses a 7-2 head-to-head record over Zverev, with three of those victories coming in Grand Slams. He is 3-1 against his German foe on hard courts too, with the only defeat coming at an ATP Masters 1000 event in Spain in 2018.
At the Australian Open in January, Zverev took the first set off Thiem, but the Austrian won three sets in a row to set up his meeting with Djokovic.
The No. 2 seed also has been in better form in New York, as he has dropped a single set over his six victories and won 12 sets to one against seeded opponents.
Zverev, on the other hand, has only one straight-set victory to his name and has dropped the first set on three occasions. He also had to come back from two sets down in the semifinal against Pablo Correno Busta, while Thiem cruised through in straight sets.
There is a chance Zverev rides the confidence generated from his comeback against Carreno Busta on Friday, but Thiem did not allow a single break point in the opening set against Medvedev, and he will be wary of Zverev's early threat after losing the first set to the German in Australia.
If Thiem remains sturdy on his serve, he should put himself in a decent position to win two more sets and clinch his first Grand Slam title.
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