31 January 2011

KingCast ode to Vitas Gerulaitis, "The Man." Put him in the Tennis Hall of Fame. Now.

Image from The Selvegeyard. Everyone knows I love John McEnroe's game (and Hana Mandlikova's) more than anyone else's. But who is up there at the top? Who was the working-class bloke who made it to the Top? Who bridged the gap betweeen Mac and Connors? Who was perhaps the fastest player to ever grace the game? Who gave back to the community's children? Who's the only player's named racquet did I buy? (Note: Not true -- I forgot about the two McEnroe Maxplys) Who's the only player whose named clothing line (Maggia) I wore? Who had the nastiest serve & volley game behind Johnny Mac? Who was the coolest tennis player ever?

Broadway Vitas, regardless of his drug woes for a bit, overzealous prosecuction notwithstanding. Thanks to the Tennis Channel for airing this Vitas Gerulaitis special, and thnks in advance for them airing Arthur Ashe d. Jimmy Connors Wimbledon 1975 tomorrow. When Vitas died it was a few years after I lived in a friend's pool house before I found my apartment when I moved to work for the Indianapolis Star. Obviously in the parlance of today's youth I was like, oh, shit, there but for the Grace of God. there go I. 

Vitas and Mac duke it out in the 1979 U.S. Open final at 7:00 of the above video, showing Kelly Ayotte supporter, Bermuda Ambassador and Dartmouth Professor Greg Slayton and me talking about his tennis experiences growing up with with Mac and Vitas. It also shows former U.S. Marshal and Kelly Ayotte cabinet member Stephen Monier being a lying, racist, manipulative jerk; I'm moving to unseal Ralph Holder's lawsuit involving his antics because they pertain to my Free Press lawsuit against Tea Party Toady and U.S. Senator Kelly Ayotte. Anyway, many may come and go, but none will be cooler than Vitas G. We miss you, Man.


Christopher King said...

I had no idea that Vitas Gerulaitis was not enshrined in the Tennis Hall of Fame down in RI, where I returned yesterday from retrieving my new Triumph on a chilly ride, heated grips and underseat exhaust being of only minimal protections.

Frankly, I'm shocked. I will admit I got a bit misty about the eyes watching this because we all rooted for Vitas -- my father, my friends and I, he was like a Tennis Demi-God, and his philanthropic contributions on top of being such a stud, let's just say he had it all and he gave it all.

The next time I ride back to RI on that Triumph I hope I am heading to the posthumous inauguration of Vitas Gerulaitis to the Tennis Hall of Fame.

-The KingCaster.

Christopher King said...

25 Sept 2011:

I am very proud that this post is now #2 when one Googles Vitas' name.

I hope in some small way I am helping to get him where he needs to be.