Topic: Tennis

September 10, 2012

There's a difference between information and data, at least as the two make themselves felt in televised sports. The former helps you understand what's happening on the court or field or floor, and why. The latter is a burped-up number or acronym, free of context or anything else. Both are a big part of watching sports on TV. The latter, sadly, seems to be winning.

September 6, 2012

After an early retirement to start a family, Kim Clijsters' return to tennis marked her real arrival. Though at first glance her first and second careers would seem to present two very different portraits, a look back at the tennis legend's career, which concluded with her recent—and this time, final—retirement from the sport, reveals that it wasn't so much that Kim changed. Rather, she changed the way we saw her, and her sport, just by being herself.

August 29, 2012

The 2012 US Open is now underway, but twenty-two-year-old professional tennis player Michael McClune won’t be competing. Instead, he’ll be watching it on television with the rest of us. But fresh off a competitive run at the Winston-Salem Open, McClune knows better than to take his eye off the ball just yet.

July 12, 2012

This morning, when I was inhaling my routine brainful of Internet, something at the Public Domain Review stood out: A naked guy playing tennis, in zoetrope format.

July 9, 2012

With Roger Federer's victory on Center Court yesterday, the greatest player in the history of tennis has arrived at the top of the mountain. Again. 

July 3, 2012

World #1 Novak Djokovic is changing clothes. He's jumped from repping the tacky-to-goofy Sergio Tacchini brand to wearing Uniqlo, a Japanese alternative-basics line whose growth (as many as 300 new stores opening every year until 2020) rivals Nole's own dominance of the men's pro tour.

June 7, 2012

It’s the last week of July 1932. The Paris sun is beating down on the clay court at Roland Garros, and the Davis Cup is hanging in the balance. Jean Borotra is gassed. Across the net stands the world’s fourth-ranked player, Wilmer Allison, a Texan with a wicked forehand volley. Allison holds advantage in the 10th game of the decisive fifth set—one errant Borotra serve away from victory. A nervous energy pulses through the crowd as its national hero toes the service line, sweat soaking his trademark white linens and blue beret.

May 11, 2012

The Madrid Open’s blue clay is perceived to be more of a stunt than a genuine attempt to better the sport. One need look no further than the mounting headlines or the spike in search volume for the words “blue clay” to understand: Madrid is enjoying massive amounts of publicity as a result of the controversy, fueling the implicit belief that the peculiar surface exists for the sake of the tournament, not the players.

May 10, 2012

An event brought together the game of tennis with the cultural study of cool earlier this month. It happened on a court situated at the foot of the Santa Rosa Mountains during an Indian Wells match contested by two obscure players that was watched live by perhaps fifty people.

April 16, 2012

A conversation with the man behind the brilliant Capybaras That Look Like Rafael Nadal about larger-than-usual rodents, tennis sex symbols, aggressive merchandising and the power of frankly ridiculous things.