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Feliciano Lopez Kills Gilles Simon with Kindness on Twitter

Gilles Simon’s widely publicized musings on talent generated quite a buzz on Twitter a few weeks back. We heard about it thanks to Mark Nixon’s translation of Simon’s conversation with L’equipe’s Frédéric Bernès, which can be found here.

Heroes and Zeros: Backwards Shorts, Murray's Curry and the King of the Golden Swing

Simon discusses the true meaning of talent and the perceived meaning of talent. He doesn’t quote Sartre but the conversation is deeper than the typical athlete-journo dialog, and most appreciated Simon’s comments for their directness and edginess. Here’s a small sample of what Simon said:

"Me, I have zero hands but I have enormous talent. There are simply different talents, some more obvious than others. What's talent? When Richard (Gasquet) sends a backhand ten miles from the corner of the stands, they say talent. They're right. But when Rafa (Nadal) does the same with a forehand, they say it's strength, it's physical. Everyone agrees on Federer's talent, but Djokovic, pffft, they have trouble…”

But not everybody was enamored with Simon’s comments, nor should they have been. Feliciano Lopez, who was singled out by Simon rather haphazardly in the interview, took to Twitter today to fire a dose of killing kindness in Simon’s direction.

First, let’s circle back to see what Simon said about Lopez’s game in his conversation with L’equipe:

“Basically, "flamboyance" is confused with talent. I often hear that Feliciano Lopez has talent and I piss on that. Ah Lopez the attacker ... No, Lopez is a defender. Everyone knows he's a baseliner who serves more than he volleys. He has the image of a gifted serve-and-volleyer. But I find the serve-and-volleyer is very often un-gifted. They guy hits a hard serve and moves up to volley because, for him, it's the easiest way to win a point.”

Now, let’s see Lopez’s tweet:

We have no way of knowing what Lopez means in his tweet. We could have it all wrong, and Lopez and Simon might be great chums who routinely insult each other’s games during interviews. But we’re going to take the low road and ASSUME THAT LOPEZ JUST KILLED SIMON WITH KINDNESS.

We’re not the only ones: