Rafael Nadal Solidifies his #1 Status in the ATP Rankings and the Tennis Abides Power Ranking
Rafael Nadal – Rafa has had the best year of any player in 2017. He has 2 majors, 2 Masters 1000 titles, 1 500 level title, and a number of strong runner-up finishes. It is possible that Federer could go on an indoor tear, but I don’t imagine that happening given Federer’s conservative scheduling.
Roger Federer – Barring a Andy Murray type run to close the year, Federer will be #2 for 2017. Federer won the Australian Open, Wimbledon, Miami, Indian Wells, and Halle. Federer is likely pretty happy with this year.
Juan Martin del Potro – Delpo clipped Federer’s wings and grabbed the first set versus Nadal in NYC. He did not duplicate his 2009 back-to-back wins over Fedal, but he showed signs of life and fight.
Kevin Anderson – The big man played well and took advantage of some odd circumstances in the bottom half of the US Open draw. I am sure he wishes he had done more to pressure Nadal, but Rafa is pretty airtight when it comes to errors and over time Nadal is just a better tennis player than Anderson. The match proved that to be true.
Sam Querrey – Big Sam reached the Wimbledon semifinal by outlasting the defending champion. He reached the US Open quarterfinal. Throw in two titles in Mexico, and Querrey has had a career year. Yet, did he leave some wins on the table in New York?
Dominic Thiem – Thiem lost in 5 to Delpo and is still finding his non-clay form. Still, among “younger” players, Thiem appears to be somewhat bankable in terms of offering consistent effort.
Alexander “Sascha” Zverev – The youngster won Rome and Montreal. He has also won 3 other titles in 2017 and finished as the runner-up at Halle. All of that upside is something to behold, but his 1-2 record at the US and French Opens after winning in Canada and Italy make for some vexing results.
Grigor Dimitrov – Grigor started 2017 on fire sandwiching a five-set loss in the Australian Open semifinal with two tournament titles. Dimitrov then claimed the Masters Cincinnati title after some months of neutral results. Had Dimitrov reached the final 8 in New York, he could be much higher on this list. Instead, Dimitrov continues to be an enigma.
Pablo Carreno Busta – PCB came within 2 sets of generating an all-Spanish final in New York. His win over Schwartzman helped propel him to his first major semifinal. This deserves some credit.
Denis Shapovalov – Talented Denis made Montreal buzz with wins over Delpo and Nadal. He then reached the round of 16 in New York after having to qualify for the main draw. Therefore, he won 6 matches in New York (the same number as Anderson). This bodes well for his future right as a lot of younger players on the ATP Tour raise as many questions as they do hopes for a Next Gen.