by Benjamin Snyder
IS MILOS RAONIC THE READ DEAL? OR FRANK DANCEVIC, VERSION 2.0? Move aside Greg Rusedski, there’s a new (and real) Canadian hotshot in town. No, not you Frank Dancevic. You’ve already had your fifteen minutes. Well, okay, try most of 2007. But, apparently there’s only room enough for one top Canuck at a time. Now, we’re talking the big-serving, big-sized, giant-killer Milos Raonic, whose recent charge through the top-tier of the ATP tour has many talking, including Greg on his Twitter :
But before we get all hot and bothered by Milos the Great, let’s not forget Dancevic’s 15 minutes of fame. Is Raonic bound for a similar destiny? To find out, here’s a breakdown of the games, the fashions, and the Canadian quirks of the two.
Similarity number one: both Frank and Milos have failed to pass the first round at the U.S. Open. While Frank has lost in the qualifying the last couple years, Milos succumbed to Carsten Ball in 2010’s first round. Of course, with the way Milos is playing, that dismal record should soon be a thing of the past. For Frank: not so much.
Going along with Milos’ big results, we have our first key difference: the young Canadian gun has actually won an ATP title. Taking out Fernando Verdasco at the SAP Open, he got what eluded Dancevic on two separate occasions: a tour victory. Take that, Anna Kournikova! Not to mention there’s that surprise run to the Aussie Open fourth round versus Dancevic’s second round in ’07. Another difference: Milos is set to crack the top 50 after a recent semifinal showing at Memphis, besting Frankie’s career-high of 65 from 2007.
Read more on Milos and Frank (and see Frank flexing some bicep) after the cut.
Both boys are big servers. Yup, Frank shares the same weapon as Raonic, blasting aces, like in his run to the AEGON International final in 2009. Regardless, itís safe to say that what Frank can do, Milos can do better. At 6-foot-5, Milos doesn’t mess around, regularly hitting booming serves, including one at 149 MPHs in his victory over Fernando. | See one for yourself
While Milos might look like a poor man’s Taylor Dent (he certainly doesn’t play like one, though) the now 26-year-old Dancevic is still rocking those curly brown locks and Clement-inspired bandanas. Props to Milos’ team for actually fitting him into some good Lacoste choices; nothing wrong with a good-looking polo.
What about this whole maple syrup and hockey thing? Oh right right, they’re Canadians. Both currently reside in Ontario with Milos in Thornhill — although he was born in Montenegro — while Frank still lives in his hometown of Niagra Falls. And while Milos is getting all the media attention these days, here’s a profile about Frank from the 2009 Rogers Cup. Because hey, dude is ranked 204th in the world (and looks good shirtless). And, as Milos has proved, you never know when they might make a run for the top… again.
(TOP: composite photos via getty; illustration by erwin ong)