August 31, 2004
NEW YORK CITY
THE MODERATOR: Questions, please.
Q. When you popped a 152 in the first service game, amped up at that point?
ANDY RODDICK: A little bit. I just wanted to welcome him to the court (laughter). No, I knew he was a little bit nervous. So, you know, I thought that, you know, I'd go at him and kind of show him some early on. In effect, that actually opened up my wide serve for later. I was getting him with actually not the bomb but more of a slice serve. You know, I think just from hitting those couple big ones early on.
Q. Did you feel it in your arm early on that you had a big serve in there?
ANDY RODDICK: I feel like that sometimes. No, not really. It surprised me, you know, when I hit the first one and I didn't really pay attention. I heard "ooh" and "aah" so it was a pretty big one. At that point I knew it was pretty alive tonight.
Q. Were you going for 153 either that game or later?
ANDY RODDICK: No. I don't think you can actually, you know, try to go for it. You know, I was just trying to go body on that one.
Q. What is the single sweetest moment of your Athens experience?
ANDY RODDICK: Probably seeing Mardy win his semifinal. I don't know if he was more excited or I was more excited for him. You know, it was fun to kind of be there and see it from the outside looking in. Not as much as the inside looking out (laughter). It was cool to kind of be a part of the whole process for him over there.
Q. Because of your talent and skill, you've been thrust in this world of San Jose one week, Memphis, Scottsdale. Was part of it fun being among the young athletes of the world, just the whole social experience?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, the whole Olympic spirit. Had the USA lounge with computers and TVs. We had no TVs in our rooms so everybody would meet there and watch the events. You know, it was great. Everybody was kind of trading stories and hanging out. You know, it was a lot of fun. I'm telling everybody, it's like being in a college dorm room with people who can run a 9.7 100. Everybody in there has a world record. It's kind of funny.
Q. Did the Aussie water poloist ever get to you?
ANDY RODDICK: No, I'm faster than they are.
Q. When you serve that well, you don't necessarily need a volleying game with it. Would you like to develop more of a volleying game as you go along? How much would that help you?
ANDY RODDICK: I'd like to have more of a volleying game not necessarily right after the serve because, you know, I've led the tour in serving for, you know, the last three years. So that's not my main concern. But more so in transition and getting on the other person's serve maybe. I think that's something that I could definitely work on.
Q. Did you ever feel during a match that you know this had to be a great but overwhelming experience for Scoville Jenkins. Did you ever think this wasn't fair or you were showing him what the game is about?
ANDY RODDICK: All is fair. He took the wildcard. He came here to play. Once you get out there, it's business. Obviously, I knew it was going to be a pretty daunting experience for him, especially early on. That's why early on I was just trying to make him play a little bit and kind of gauge where he was as far as his nerves. But, you know, he'll be fine. I think every other stadium will feel like nothing after playing out there. So, you know, I think in the long run it will be good for him.
Q. You're going to face Rafael Nadal. He said after his match today he didn't have a clue how to face your serve. Are you expecting a different experience against him than today?
ANDY RODDICK: I think Rafael is being humble, personally. I think he's a lot more confident in his abilities than he's letting on if he said he didn't have a clue. He's got more of a clue than any 18-year-old I've seen. You know, it's going to be tough. He gets amped up. He likes playing the big matches. You know, I'm just going to have to try to enforce my game upon him.
Q. Todd announced his retirement yesterday. If I recall correctly, he was pretty supportive of you, especially in Davis Cup. Can you go back in the memory bank and think of one story that you have in terms of your relationship with Todd that's special.
ANDY RODDICK: Todd is very supportive of all the young players. I remember early on, I was on my first Davis Cup team as a practice partner. You know, just little things like if we're talking about music one day, he'd come, knock on my door. I was scared to leave my room. Andre, Pete, McEnroe; I was very kind of intimidated by the whole situation. If we were talking about something, he'd come by later and say, "I got the CD for you. Check it out." Just little things like that to make you feel more comfortable.
Q. Could you tell the difference between 145 and 152?
ANDY RODDICK: No. They're both hard (smiling). No, I mean, if you're asking me if I can just hit it and say, "Okay, that was... " No, no. I think once it gets that high, I'm not sure. I think a lot of it has to do with I was serving downwind. I think that has a little something to do with it. But I can't really tell the difference.
Q. You showed a nice sense of sportsmanship. Patted him on his back, gave him a vote of confidence. Do you remember when you came out there for the first time to play in a Grand Slam?
ANDY RODDICK: Yeah. I lost on Grandstand in four sets to Albert Costa. But I think the situation was a little bit different. I had, you know -- I had won a couple matches on the main tour, I played well in Washington, beaten a couple Top 30 players. I think I might have been a little bit more comfortable than Scoville. You know, this is his first ATP match, much less Grand Slam match, if I'm not mistaken. So, you know, it's tough. But, you know, like I said, I think he'll look back and think it's probably a pretty cool experience, as well.
Q. Serena described her mellow outfit as a "Rebel Without a Cause." If you were forced to describe your shirt today, how would you describe it?
ANDY RODDICK: Are you forcing me to describe it?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know, man. It's kind of funky. I think it looks like a subway system map personally. I don't know. You know, it's new. It's different. Why not? We're at The Open.
Q. Does Austin have a subway?
ANDY RODDICK: Come on. Come on. Yeah, the sandwich shop.
Q. Can you tell how Brad Gilbert helps you especially in this tournament?
ANDY RODDICK: I don't know if this tournament's any different than any others as far as our relationship goes. Obviously, there's a lot more emphasis from the outside on this tournament. But, you know, I think that's a very vague question. It's tough to really answer that in a short kind of concise statement. But, I mean, he's been great over the past year. Now it's like we're an old married couple with our routine. We kind of know each other pretty well, know each other's actions. It's gotten pretty easy. We have the same groove every week. We do the same thing. We're kind of just clicked in now.
End of FastScriptsâ€¦.