September 9, 2004
NEW YORK CITY
THE MODERATOR: First question, please.
Q. Do you agree that you lost the game today because you didn't take a chance, crucial breakpoints, you had a lot of breakpoints?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, that's the stat. You don't really need to analyze the match any further than breakpoints had and breakpoints converted. That's pretty much the whole match, you know. I had a lot. Didn't convert that much. He had a couple and converted almost, you know, every one he had. So that's pretty much -- that's pretty much the match. But credit to him for bearing down on those points.
Q. Any thought on why that occurred, why you were not able to?
ANDY RODDICK: Let's give some credit to him. The guy serves out of a tree. He serves huge. It seemed like he served better down breakpoints and I didn't serve as high, which is unusual for me. But, you know, I had a good look in the fifth set there and, you know, just missed it.
Q. Watching him serve, I mean, one might say he "out-Roddicked" Roddick. Would that be a fair statement?
ANDY RODDICK: If you really want to go with that. But I wouldn't. I don't know if people would like it (smiling). That's kind of dorky, actually. I wouldn't go with it.
Q. You talked about the backhand crosscourt, the one you missed. The following game, was it still in your head?
ANDY RODDICK: No, no, no. You know, I just didn't give myself a chance to win that game, you know. He put the pressure on me early to win the first point, and it was just a bad game, you know...
Q. He mentioned that you guys played quite a bit as Juniors. You played together as a doubles team.
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah.
Q. He had a pretty good match in San Jose. Was it because he knows you so well he was less intimidated than other players might be?
ANDY RODDICK: I think that's a stretch, you know. I know -- you know, I know a lot of people pretty well and I've beaten them before, so I really don't think so. I mean, Juniors was five years ago. You know, so a lot's happened since then. That thought didn't cross my mind once tonight.
Q. You had great momentum going in the third set. Looked like you were pretty well in control there. What turned around?
ANDY RODDICK: It was just one game. I was in every service game of his. He got into one of mine and converted, you know. Bit unlucky. Maybe I didn't play aggressive enough in the fifth. You know, but what you saw was pretty much what happened. I was in a lot of games. I was feeling comfortable. I was feeling like I kind of had -- like you said, I had the momentum. Then all it takes is, you know, little bit of time and things just change. It's the nature of the game sometimes, I guess.
Q. Have you been in a match where you win I think it's close to 30 more points than the other guy and still lose?
ANDY RODDICK: Probably not. Not off the top of my head.
Q. Harder to swallow?
ANDY RODDICK: No, I mean, I don't, you know -- you don't play best, you know, 501 out of 1,000 points. You play three-out-of-five sets. That's just tricky score keeping, you know. You play five sets. He won three-out-of-five sets. He's the winner of the match. Points don't matter. They matter how you win them. That's why you hear people talk about the big points all the time, you know, those other 20, 27 are irrelevant because he won the big ones.
Q. From 120, do you expect to see more of him?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, I expected to see a lot of him out of Juniors. He had that serve out of Juniors. You know, to kind of see him progress a little late is surprising to me because, you know, I think that much of him as a player.
Q. Definitely think he's a Top 10 player?
ANDY RODDICK: I mean, yeah. The guy's got weapons. He's still developing. He can still get better in a lot of areas. So, you know, I think he should be.
Q. You seemed reluctant to come to the net with the exception of the third.
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know. Maybe I should have.
Q. You come in here, you played four great matches coming into this, defending champion. How do you feel after the loss now?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't feel good, you know. But at the same time, I fought till the end and, you know, I gave it everything I had. You know, I thought I was pretty well prepared. You know, it's disheartening. It's disappointing. But, you know, I'm not gonna -- I don't know. I mean, I'll recover. I'll be fine. But, you know, right now I don't feel great. But if I felt great, then something would be wrong.
Q. What would make it a very good year for you now? Would it mean winning Davis Cup?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, that's probably first on my list. That's what I have left, you know. That's -- you know, that's one of the things that's on my big list of goals. You know, now I like to look forward and not back, so that's looking me in the eyes right now. So, you know, that would make it a good year. Yeah, I've had a good year. Regardless, if you can clinch a spot in Masters by September or August, it's a pretty good year. But, you know, I just need to step up. I lost a couple heart-breakers in Slams this year. I just need to step up and win those. It's easier said than done. But, you know, the losses like this, they make me hungrier. So, you know, hopefully I'll come back with something good.
Q. Do you think he has a chance against Hewitt?
ANDY RODDICK: I mean, of course he has a chance. I mean, you don't get to the semifinals of a Grand Slam and not have a chance against someone. I don't know if it's the best matchup for him. I mean, Lleyton passes well. He's going to make him -- he's going to make a lot of returns. I definitely have to say that Lleyton is the favorite in that one. But, you know, who knows. I just want to see where everyone's going to sit, what box (smiling).
Q. Probably not interested, but who do you see winning the tournament?
ANDY RODDICK: You got to say Federer as the favorite. He's proven it all year. Anything could happen, but, you know, if you have to pick a favorite, then it's probably him at this point.
Q. Is that as much a disappointment, that let's say he does make the final, it won't be you on the other side against him?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. You know, if I was in the final, it would be great either way. But I definitely would have liked another shot at him. But, you know, that's the way it goes. That's not going to happen.
Q. You are going to stay till the end of the tournament?
ANDY RODDICK: Am I going to stay till the end? No. If there was a flight at La Guardia leaving in 20 minutes, I'd go. Want to come with me (laughter). You want to come? All right. Let's do it. You tap it, I'll pump it. All right.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.