Since When Did ATP Players Care About Clothes?

It’s a slow tennis news day when most of the stories coming out of the ATP revolve around recent clothing deals for the top players. Clothing and shoe contracts always mean a check is on its way no matter how well you do each week, but the recent level of the ATP boys leaving one fashion house for another is almost reaching “Top Model” hysteria heights. (No disrespect Ms. Banks).

Andy Murray’s much hyped U.S. Open participation with English designer Fred Perry came to an abrupt end when Murray announced this week he was jumping ship to a multi-year deal with adidas. Apparently in addition to getting his own “color line”, Murray will get free shoes, which he never got before.

Slightly lower down the ATP totem pole, American Sam Querrey secured a seven-figure deal with K-Swiss after his current contract with adidas expires this year. Speaking to Tennis Week, Querrey’s agent and President of BEST John Tobias, cited lack of advertising for the big man as a prime reason for the switch.

“While Sam was the highest ranked American singles player to wear adidas, in three years they never really activated their sponsorship through any advertising featuring Sam. Sam had a tremendous year in 2009 and has clearly established himself and the No. 2 American with the No. 1 spot probably just a year or two away.”

Now it’s obvious Querrey has a great agent and he deserves a big deal like that, but let’s get back to reality. Querrey, despite a solid 2009, has yet to prove himself against the big boys ala Federer or Nadal and outside of the U.S. is hardly known. So you can’t exactly blame adidas for not advertising him hard enough. Now if Querrey breaks through next year then K-Swiss may have a real star on their hands.

Meanwhile the other potential news is that Novak Djokovic, who as well all know can work the catwalk like a supermodel, may jump from adidas to K-Swiss, but it’s all very tdb.

Despite all this, I doubt any of the top boys can replace Federer as the “king of style”. I think he could show up in a t-shirt and sweatpants and still pull off the “classy timeless look”. They say clothes make the man but sometimes it’s just all about the man.

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