Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer will meet in Miami today for the 23rd time since 2004. Excuse me while I kiss the sky.
Ah, yes, Christmas in Miami -- and this ain't no April Fools joke!
With 25 Grand Slam singles titles and 100 million dollars of prize money between them, Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal aren't exactly desperate for accolades, or triumphs for that matter, and yet, as they prepare to lock horns for the 23rd time Friday evening in Miami, one can't help but feel that surge of electric anticipation that has energized this rivalry since it began in the very city of Miami in 2004.
Back then it was a swashbuckling and quicker-than-lightning 17-year-old Nadal who took out a more proven yet still largely unheralded Federer in straight sets. See the video below if you don't believe me.
Six years later, it's hard to really sum up the magnitude of a Federer-Nadal meeting -- or to predict who will do what to whom -- but we can say with sincere certainty, that no way in hell could we have ever imagined that the tennis would be this transcendent between the two.
So I say rejoice. Beat your fists against your chest and scream "I love tennis!" at the top of your lungs. Make some popcorn. Do some push-ups or shave the image of Rafa or Roger into your chest hair. Get a tattoo that says "Vamos Rafa!" or "Roger That!" But whatever you do, I implore you, do not take tonight's match for granted.
It's too late in the rivalry, and we're too much closer to the end than the beginning of this spontaneously combustible ceremony to be taking even one point of it for granted.
Simply and unequivocally put, if these two tennis paragons see fit to bless us with their awe inspiring athleticism, artistry, and desire, then who are we not to bask in its glory?
Now that Federer and Nadal have arrived precisely back at the place that their rivalry burst out of the womb in 2004, I think it's high time to basically spend the day getting jacked-up about these two scissor-handed sorcerers of shot making, and what type of paranormal points they will play.
After seven years of epic battles, it's all come back to the place it began.
Two of the greatest heavyweights that the game has ever seen, duking it out again in front of a packed house of crazies who are probably going to frame their ticket stubs the minute they get home.
Yeah, it's that special people. So go ahead and scream about it. I'll be right there with you.