November 15, 2003
THE MODERATOR: Questions for Andy.
Q. Was there something wrong with your arm?
ANDY RODDICK: It was just a little sore. Nothing serious. You know, just kind of you start feeling some things the last week of the year. But, no, I'm not too concerned about it.
Q. It had no effect on what happened out there?
ANDY RODDICK: No, no. I mean, it was hurting but, I mean, you know, I'm not gonna sit here and say I would have won if it was all right. He played super-well tonight. So credit goes to him.
Q. Is this really what you were saying the other day, that the whole season now is building up on you?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I'm upset that I lost, but I'm relieved that the year's over. You know, I'm gonna kind of chill out for a little while now. It's gonna be nice.
Q. Just put this in perspective. Where were you and what were you doing last year during the weekend of the Masters Series Cup?
ANDY RODDICK: I might have been at the Nebraska-Colorado game. We lost that day, too. I'm not sure (smiling). I don't know. I mean, I didn't really follow any of it. I just kind of heard what happened at the end.
Q. What do you need to do well to beat Federer?
ANDY RODDICK: You kind of need to do a lot well. He doesn't really have any big weaknesses - especially when he serves the way he did tonight. His percentage had to be up close to 65, 70 percent. It definitely makes the job tough.
Q. How do you see the final? Have you seen Andre?
ANDY RODDICK: I mean, I see it a lot like their last match here. I think it's gonna be a pretty good match. You know, the only thing that might be a little bit in Roger's favor is he hasn't had too many tough matches the last couple days. It is a three-out-of-five-set final. I think that could be a big factor. I don't know if I remember seeing Andre tired before, so, you know, that might be a moot point.
Q. How is Roger's level compared to when you played him at Wimbledon?
ANDY RODDICK: Pretty much the same. He kicked my ass then and he kicked my ass tonight. So it was pretty similar (smiling).
Q. I know you've touched on this in the last couple days. But now the season definitely is over for you.
ANDY RODDICK: Alternate for the final (laughter).
Q. How do you look back on it? Have you had a chance now to sort of really appreciate what you've achieved?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, about 10 minutes. My mind's been racing. No, I don't know. I mean, it's -- you know, it's kind of just the sentiments that I've expressed all year. I was sitting there in May not really playing much after the French. Kind of deciding what route I wanted to go. I didn't really expect to finish up, you know, so strong. To have a Grand Slam title and then the Champions Race No. 1 trophy as well, it's been a ride since then.
Q. Today, was it a matter of you knew what you wanted to do but you just couldn't get your body to do it or to respond?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I just, you know, I just felt like he was a step faster than I was today. He was reading the game a lot faster than me. You know, he was just on top of me today. That's basically the way it went. I mean, you know, I felt like maybe early on in the first set I had a couple chances, 15-30 on his serve. Had a couple second serve returns that I missed a deuce in one of those games. You never know, if you get one of those, then what will happen. But, you know, he just played -- he just outplayed me tonight; that's the bottom line.
Q. What do you plan on working on during the off-season?
ANDY RODDICK: A lot physically. That's gonna be, you know -- I'm not sure how much I'm gonna take away from the game. Probably a couple weeks, two, three weeks. But I hope to get started on, you know, a good physical training program up in the next week or so.
Q. Like what Andre does to prepare?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I think he's a great model for it. This is the one time where you can go all-out on physical activity and not have to worry about the consequences of having to play the next week. So it's pretty cool.
Q. In terms of the way people move against you, is he the quickest? Does he glide the best? Does he move the best against you?
ANDY RODDICK: It depends. Is he the quickest or does he glide the best?
Q. Either of those two or both?
ANDY RODDICK: Quickest, maybe not. As far as just gliding and maybe you're not thinking he's there and he just shows up and is just there, he's very fast. You know, especially for someone, you know -- he's probably 6'2. He's a pretty well-built guy. He's not Lleyton or Coria or Schuettler, you know. It's pretty impressive. I think he's a very underrated athlete, you know, overall.
Q. You say he's the one guy that more often than not will do shots and you think to yourself, "How does he do that?" Of all the guys?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, a couple times tonight he hit -- the few times I did hit good, deep returns, he kind of took full-swinging ground strokes and half-volleys and just swung at them. I think the guy - I said earlier - the guy has more natural just flair and talent for the game than most -- I mean, than anybody really.
Q. Kind of like at that Wimbledon match?
ANDY RODDICK: Sorry?
Q. Like at the Wimbledon match?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know. I don't remember that. I have selective memory.
Q. Do you ever find yourself thinking after the year you've had, "What do I do for an encore?"
ANDY RODDICK: I lost sometimes this year, it's okay. You know, I can...
Q. Not too much in that last half.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. You know, like I said, I just want to keep improving. I might finish next year 3 or 4 or 5 but feel like I'm a better player, you know. You know, I don't think it's gonna happen every year where I get on a roll like I did this summer and kind of just win that many tough matches in a row and have everything kind of go your way. You know, I realize that, you know, as well as I was playing, there was a good amount of luck, still involved with that so... You know, we'll see. I feel like I can improve, still.
Q. McIngvale's first attempt to put this tournament on, how do you feel the week went?
ANDY RODDICK: I had a great time. The stuff they -- I think they did a lot of stuff for the players as far as if anybody wanted to play golf or go to Rockets games. They tried their best to accommodate everybody. I thought the atmosphere was great. You saw people from Argentina here, you saw people from Switzerland here. You know, obviously the Americans came out and gave Andre and I a big boost this week. So, you know, I think this year was very good, and I anticipate next year will be even better.
Q. Somebody has to ask, who is this very well-behaved young gentleman?
ANDY RODDICK: This is my nephew, so... You're well-behaved. We're trying to figure out if he's actually a Roddick male yet. He doesn't get angry (laughter).
Q. He's very quiet.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. He's shy.
Q. Mental trainer?
ANDY RODDICK: He's my mental guru. He doesn't talk a lot. Sometimes he just kind of smacks me in the face, don't you?
Q. What is his name, first name?
ANDY RODDICK: Jerry, like my dad. Thanks for the year.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.