US Open Picks and Predictions: Men's Final Between Djokovic, Medvedev Set To Impress on Sunday
The final Grand Slam of the year couldn’t be concluded in any better way. After all these beautiful stories about the teenage stars on the women’s side, it will be #1 seed Novak Djokovic taking on #2 seed Daniil Medvedev in what should be a highlight reel of a men’s final.
Novak Djokovic vs. Daniil Medvedev Prediction
He has won 20 Grand Slam titles already, so it kind of feels like a weird thing to say, but this will be the biggest match of Novak Djokovic’s career. If you are into goat debates, there are a lot of arguments for the Serb already. A win tonight would ultimately silence all doubters. Surpassing Roger and Rafa with his 21st major title as well as winning the Grand Slam, which, in men’s singles, has last been achieved by Rod Laver in 1969, is on the line.
A lot will depend on how Novak copes with that ultimate pressure. He already stated that he will “treat that match like it’s the last match of [his] career”. Looking at all his matches, one could speculate that all this has been on his mind the whole fortnight. He lost the first set against all of Nishikori, Brooksby, Berrettini and Zverev and it’s just like he is nervous for a bit until he realizes that there is best of 5 tennis to be played and no one can outlast him at that.
Just like in the women’s final, I have a hard time assessing their actual form. Medvedev has been super impressive, however he did not face the quality in opposition Djokovic has. The Russian also came into this year’s Australian Open final all guns blazing just to lose in straight sets. I wouldn’t read too much into that result though as a lot more nerves are involved in this one and Medvedev should have learned a bit from that first major final between the two.
There are only a handful of guys that can hang with Djokovic in rallies and Medvedev in current form arguably tops that list. Considering how good returners these two are, we could see some deuce games going back and forth. Medvedev even tops Djokovic at return points won on hard courts as he won 41% compared to 37.3% over the last year. This brings me to my first bet which is a prop you can find with Unibet and some other books and targets the duration of the match. The line set at 164.5 minutes could even be achieved in three sets if we see some of these close service games. Djokovic will surely exploit the 25 seconds serve clock as well considering how much is at stake, which also plays into that bet.
I’m not usually one to read too much into unsustainable trends, however if I were a Djokovic supporter, I wouldn’t like the pattern evolving around these first sets. I’m curious as to how the world #1 will react if things don’t start as expected. Starting slow hasn’t only been an issue for the Serb in New York, he also lost the first set in big matches against Nadal and Tsitsipas at the French Open or Berrettini at Wimbledon. That does not include other first set losses at the biggest stages against Musetti, where he started pushing in these tiebreaks, Draper or Carreno Busta.
Now I’m probably here to get silenced as well, however, I do see value in a first set win for Medvedev. Going along with that is another bet as the games total has been pushed back down to 37.5 with bet365. I’m not touching the games spread as Djokovic has shown that he outlasts everyone that isn’t at 100% late in matches. Ultimately, I see Djokovic winning this as the mental beast he is when it really matters, but I’m hoping for an exciting battle with lots of mouth-watering rallies as the 2021 Grand Slam season comes to an end.