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Published on Sep 23, 2015
Just another Wednesday Night in Flushing during the US Open. A quick conversation with four great champions...
The Legends Doubles Exhibition: Mardy Fish and Jim Courier def. Michael Chang and John McEnroe - As John McEnroe put it after the match: "It was nice of Roger Federer to agree to be the opening act for us tonight." After Roger's quick win over Richard Gasquet, Arthur Ashe Stadium was left starving for more. Even the likes of Bradley Cooper, Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake stuck around to see the legends put on a show...and the legends didn't disappoint. Loaded with laughter and fun with fans, the fellas played for 90-minutes. Fish and Courier clinched the win in a match tie-break: 3-6, 6-2, [10-8].
The highlight for me? Having the opportunity, in person, to wish Mardy Fish all the best in his life's next chapter. He's pure class. I haven't run into Mardy since 2007 when the US Davis Cup Team won the title in Portland, Oregon. At the time, Mardy wasn't in the mix, but he was on the bench, selflessly supporting his buddies Bob, Mike, Andy and James. After the win, at the official dinner, the USTA brought me in to voice-over a few of the evening's events and activities. I was tucked away in the back, but when Mardy heard my voice, he got up and sought me out. He formally introduced himself, saying he wanted to finally meet the man behind the voice he'd heard for years, rattling off his accomplishments before matches at the US Open and Davis Cup Ties.
Genuine, authentic and real - he and Patrick McEnroe then introduced me to the rest of the guys. I'll never forget Mardy's sincerity. His kindness. His appreciation. That moment stuck with me, and I couldn't have been more thrilled to see him crack the top-10 and enjoy tremendous success on the court. There's no doubt in my mind - as he blends his natural compassion with the raw and determined work-ethic he honed in chapter-1, Mardy Fish has a very rewarding future...as do many he will touch along the way. I'm grateful he had a chance to say "so long" on his own terms at this year's Open.