Category: Tennis

Final Masters thoughts

Congrats Bubba Watson. The final round of the Masters was fun, drama filled and very entertaining. Phil Mickelson’s early collapse to his late charge that just fell short. The two hole playoff culminating in one heck of a shot by Watson to get in position to win. Holes in one. A double eagle by Louis Oosthulzen. Some old questions resurfaced. Like is Tiger Woods now regressing or did we all just jump on the bandwagon? What about Rory McIllroy? Is the Masters just not his major? Lee Westwood. When will he win a major? Will he win a major? How about Luke Donald? Once again, parody has ruled golf. But is that really a good thing? We love the underdog story. But, do we love the underdog when there is no favorite for them to tackle? Would the Red Sox’ World Series in 2004 been as great if there was no Yankees for them to beat? Would tennis be as popular as it is without Rafael Nadal, Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic trading blows?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at

What would be more impressive?

With Novak Djok0vic’s five-set thriller over Rafael Nadal, he has now won three-straight majors. The only major he failed to win last year, the French Open, is up next. With a win there, he would hold all four major titles and still have a shot at a calender-year slam. Tiger Woods also accomplished that feat in golf, holding the “Tiger Slam”.

So, which feat would be more impressive? Tiger didn’t have a main rival at that point. He was clearly the dominant player in the sport at that time. Yet, in golf, he’s facing so many more opponents who could have the weekend of their lives to challenge him for a tournament. Novak has to face the likes of Andy Murray, Nadal and Roger Federer. But, Federer is simply not young enough anymore, Murray’s never won a major and Nadal’s been fighting injuries.

While Djovokic’s rapid rise to dominance is shocking to me, I have to go with Tiger. Just the fact that any player could have a good weekend while Tiger couldn’t afford a poor weekend. Djokovic can get away with not playing his best in the early rounds.

Which do you think would be more impressive?

Lukas Eggen can be reached at

First, I must apologize to tennis fans. I have not watched nearly as much of the Australian Open as I would have liked. However, after two epic semifinals that saw Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federer and Novak Djokovic dig deep to beat Andy Murray, a can’t-miss final is in store.

Djokovic, during his amazing run in 2011, defeated Nadal SIX times in tournament finals. However, the question will be how much will Djokovic’s “physical crisis” affect him during the match? Also, Nadal looked very focused. And you can bet he’s going to be looking to prove that last year was a fluke season for Djokovic and not a changing of the guard in the tennis world.

But, after watching Djokovic, provided the match didn’t wear him out, it’s hard to pic k against him. His match against Murray showed just how much he’s changed in a couple years. The Djokovic of the past would not have won that match, not even gotten close. However, that wasn’t so much a tennis match as it was a test of wills. Huge momentum swings. Great shots. Great defense. Digging deep to find that last extra burst of energy.

If anyone saw that match, they were treated to tennis at its finest.

As for the final, it has a lot to live up to. But, I’ll take Djokovic in four.

Lukas Eggen can be reached at

Nevada Athletics Director Cary Groth announced that the Wolf Pack hired Erik Burton to coach the men’s tennis team next season. Burton coached both the men’s and women’s tennis teams at Western New Mexico University, where he led the men’s team to the elite 8 of the NCAA Tournament during the 2011 season.

Previously, Sylvain Malroux coached both the men’s and women’s teams for Nevada after former men’s coach Chad Stoloff left. Malroux will continue to run the women’s team.

Lukas Eggen