Everyone says Djokovic is the GOAT 'according to statistics', but the data is clear

The Serb is indicated by many as the greatest ever, according to data and statistics. Many believe that what Federer and Nadal did was more important. But regardless of bias, the data is not wrong and they are always clear

by Lorenzo Ciotti
Everyone says Djokovic is the GOAT 'according to statistics', but the data is clear
© Julian Finney / Staff Getty Images Sport

There is a borderline that defines greatness. Who is the greatest of all time, in their field? The one who exalted his sector, with excellence, elegance, popularity and beauty or who, according to data and statistics, achieved more than all the others? I believe they are complementary. There wouldn't be one without the other. But, at the same time, data and statistics don't lie: they send a clear message, which cannot be ignored, not even by those who stubbornly refuse to ignore it.

And the data and statistics say that Novak Djokovic is the GOAT, in tennis. Many, whenever we talk about Greatest of All Time, point out that Nole is the GOAT according to statistics. As if to say: the numbers say that Djokovic is the best, but the best, for what they have done for tennis, are Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.

I don't particularly agree with anyone who thinks this. First it should be underlined that the Big 3 have done the impossible, they have given tennis the impossible, they have received the impossible from tennis. Federer was the architect of all this. The arrival of Nadal created a rivalry opposite to Federer, creating a pairing like few in the history of sport, capturing the love of the fans. The advent of Djokovic broke the pairing, made it clear how those who, armed with will and talent, could put a stop to the rise of the Fedal. And he did it.

Djokovic© Julian Finney / Staff Getty Images Sport

Djokovic has won more than the Swiss and the Spaniard, he is ahead in head-to-head matches against both and, in the long run, he is destined to dominate a sport like few others in history. In summary, I believe that the Big 3 should be considered as a single entity, an unattainable divine triad, and among the three, Djokovic is the leader because he is simply the most successful and probably the strongest, regardless of the fans' perception.

An example. A special guest attended Novak Djokovic's debut. During the first round match played on the Rod Laver Arena, which saw the ATP No.1 prevail with a few too many problems over the Croatian Dino Prizmic, Andre Agassi was in the stands watching the match.

Andre Agassi's example

The American legend, four times champion in Melbourne, was framed several times while applauding the Serbian champion's plays. In a recent interview with The Age the former American tennis player made some comments on the Big Three, then focusing on the future ambitions of the Serbian champion.

Agassi explained that Djokovic's chances of winning other slams depend on his physical state. "The only thing I am absolutely convinced of is that Novak cannot beat the time. It's just a question of how long he can put it off. I definitely see a few more years where he will still be competitive on the tour," commented the former world No.

Agassi then added: "How can you say something isn't possible? Records are there to be broken, right? Obviously we are speculating on many things, including health, which at some point will start to take its toll. In terms of statistics, Djokovic is the GOAT of men's tennis. You can't argue with Novak's stats. From Grand Slams to the number of weeks at the top of the rankings, there are many statistics he is redefining."

The former American tennis player then also mentioned Federer and Nadal.

Federer© Ian Walton / Staff Getty Images Sport

"But how can you leave Federer out of this discussion and how can you not recognize the elegance with which he did what he did. And with Rafa... I don't know if tennis has ever seen anyone compete like this. For me, what he achieved on paper is one thing, but who really benefited the game? I believe tennis has benefited enormously from all of them. Absolutely," declared Agassi.

The 8-time Slam champion then concluded by talking about his challenges with the Swiss tennis player: "I played against him in the final of the US Open and I knew what I was up against. I didn't see anyone from that generation who could stand up to him. But then Rafa and Novak arrived. Imagine if these three guys didn't have to play against each other, would we be talking about two men with 35 Grand Slams?”

Rafael Nadal, Brisbane 2024
Rafael Nadal, Brisbane 2024© Chris Hyde / Stringer - Getty Images Sport

Patrick Mouratoglou shared a post a few days ago in which he spoke about this very topic. The French coach underlined how, to define the GOAT, data and statistics must be followed, which are of fundamental importance to understand who is truly the greatest of all time. Former Serena Williams and Simona Halep's coach highlighted how Federer was the beauty of tennis, but how, at the same time, the data speaks very clearly regarding this topic.