No matter how it might look, regime change really will come to men’s tennis someday, but for now power remains concentrated in very familiar hands.
Four years have passed since the last New York Times survey of the best shots in men’s tennis, and the players who dominated that poll in 2014 continue to dominate the latest one in 2018.
Novak Djokovic and Rafael Nadal are in their 30s, just like the 37-year-old Roger Federer. But the three of them remain the sport’s leading figures, even as two of their longtime rivals, Andy Murray and Stan Wawrinka, have fallen far back because of injuries.
“I was surprised how hard it was to choose anyone other than the big three for so many categories,” said Stephen Tignor, a longtime writer at Tennis magazine. “I guess I shouldn’t be.”