September 23, 2009

Andre Agassi on Serena's US Open "tirade"

Andre Agassi had tough words for Serena Williams after her threatening outburst at the U.S. Open. Agassi and I were talking Tuesday about his upcoming charity concert on Saturday, the Grand Slam for Children, when I asked for his thoughts on Williams. "Certainly, what she did was beyond out of line. It was quite despicable," Agassi said. He's also disappointed in Williams' apology which suggested she's an intense competitor who lost her focus for a moment, and the rest of us should move past it.

"That," the retired tennis hero said, "is not an excuse for the lack of accountability that should exist with actions like that. It's one thing to argue an issue on the court. It's another thing to threaten a person. And that's a line that shouldn't be crossed." Williams, you know, screamed at a line judge, "If I could, I would take this (expletive) ball and shove it down your (expletive) throat." If Williams had a more thoughtful post-outburst follow-through, she could have turned her worst moment into her best, Agassi said. "In life, some of our darkest moments can be our finest, depending on what we choose to do with it." Agassi said he or any other player could have done what Williams did. It's not easy to judge her because "you don't know what it's like to walk a mile in her shoes."

But if Agassi had melted down like that, "I know one thing for sure. It'd be really hard for me to live with myself if I didn't continually express my deepest regrets for how I conducted myself." As for the foot fault that led to Williams' tirade, Agassi couldn't tell on TV whether Williams stepped on the line or not. If Agassi had been the linesman during that match point, Williams would have to have violated that line "by a significant margin for me to pull that trigger." But a linesman's call is a linesman's call, he said.

-- Doug Elfman (Los Angeles Review-Journal)

Andre is not free of having on-court "moments" either, check out this link - Andre has a moment.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hypocrite much? Wasn't he the one hitting balls at a lines woman, at the 2001 semis at Wimbledon against Rafter?

Oh wait, he did it twice and wasn't fined for it, banned or defaulted and I certainly don't remember humility in his presser afterwards. Double standards. Serena said "IF" she could ... he actually DID attempt to harm someone.

Anonymous said...

Agassi is a jerk, hypocrite, full of crap. I've lost all respect for him and I never did like him. Please read below. Here's a piece of that article on his disgraceful display against Rafter in 2001.

The former champion complained so sulkily about one line decision that a section of the crowd booed him. On another occasion he swore loudly enough to upset a line judge, who came trotting dramatically all the way from her position at the back of the court to tell the umpire, which resulted in Agassi receiving a code violation warning. At the end he launched a ball into the back stop, nearly hitting the line judge who had made the tough call. He was lucky not to suffer further censure for that.

In the press conference the one-time king of glitz was caustic, embittered and almost unable to answer. Was the warning a little unfair? "Yeah, big time. I blame her husband for that," Agassi spat. What did he think about the quality of tennis? "I thought it sucked - really did."

Confronted by a sea of surprise at that remark, Agassi sought to explain. "That frustration won't allow me to size up the quality," he said. "I thought it was pretty disappointing." And when he added, "Right now it's hard to enjoy anything. I mean you know you just have to shake it off," the conference came sourly to a halt.

els said...

lol at the tennis world hypocrites. serena is doing just fine and is learning from all of it no matter how she handled the situation.

Anonymous said...

omg, what a jerk Agassi is!! he lost all my respect by saying this! Serena was right and hurt, and still apologized! This whole story ended for me already. Just haters need to keep it alive. Sad and poor.

elisse said...

thanks for posting that article. funny to hear agassi say what he did after reading that...just wow. anyway, serena's best days are still ahead. agassi shouldn't try to take that away from her. she's opening another school in africa and giving scholarships, is a tennis great and a best selling author all before the age of 30, with this incident being the first of any kind she's done in her veteran career.

blacksmith said...

Not to mention a shareholder of the Miami Dolphins. To hear this from a passionate tennis player and watching him, get frustrated in his career, then to say this? What a hypocritical move . . .

Monika said...

Is this the same meth-head who likes to hit linesmen with 120mph serves trying to preach to Serena. Last time I checked, actually carrying out an assault on an individual is much worse than so-called threatening a person. Agassi had assaulted a few line officials during his career and he never apologized for it. He needs to keep his mouth shut!!