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Bob and Mike Bryan - Gentlemen's Doubles final

Saturday 6 July 2013

Bob and Mike Bryan speak to the media following their victory in the Wimbledon gentlemen's doubles final

Q.  How do you explain this?

BOB BRYAN:  I don't know.  It's been a really good run for us.  But we've just taken it one point at a time.  It's added up over this amazing two and a half months.

I can't explain it.  We've been working hard and taking care of our bodies.  We've put the game in the right perspective in our life.  When we lose, it's not the end of the world.

He's married; I have a family; I have a kid.  We're just playing for fun.  We've done it all in the sport, and now we're just out there taking swings and not living and dying with every win and loss.

Q.  Talk about the Bryan Slam and what that means, adding the gold medal to this...

MIKE BRYAN:  It's hard to even dream that we'd have the Slam, all four at one time.  It all started back after we won the gold.  It just felt like a huge pressure was released.  Went on to win the Open and had a great summer.

This year we've been on an amazing tear.  Never had a streak like this.  Especially at 35, I feel like we're hitting our peak.

Yeah, I mean, when we got out there ‑‑ I thought we were pretty loose before the match.  Once we got out there, it kind of was sinking in, like, this is weird.  We're going to go for the slam here, you know.  Not the calendar slam, but...

I started off a little tight.  I never whiffed a volley before.

BOB BRYAN:  Yeah, I knew we were in trouble when you whiffed that volley.

Yeah, it was a very rough start.  Those guys played hot.  You know, our legs were a little Jello‑y.  It helps to have a three‑out‑of‑five‑set match.  You have time.

We found or rhythm, got a hold, and then started stacking hold after hold and added pressure on them until we got the breaks.

Q.  After the first set, what are you thinking?  What are you talking about?  How does this one feel?  You have so many records and accomplishments.  Does this feel any different?

MIKE BRYAN:  On the changeover after the first set, we said, That's why we're playing three‑out‑of‑five.  We have time.  We finished the first set pretty strong.  We broke once.  So it felt like we had a little momentum going into the second.

As Bob said, we just kept our energy high and didn't get down.  Then, you know, this one, in the context of our career, is probably up there at the top.  I didn't think anything could feel as sweet as the gold medal, but this one just feels like there's a cap, a lid, or a ribbon around our career.

It's pretty cool.  It's something we never dreamed of, to try to win four in a row.  It's too hard to dominate in doubles.  Maybe we had a little luck involved along the way.  We just took one at a time.  It just added up.

Now we got to try to suit back up for the calendar slam.  I don't even want to think about that.

BOB BRYAN:  It also feels better knowing we're probably going home tomorrow.  We really ended this trip with a bang.  We get to enjoy it, and we'll fly back to our families and celebrate with them.

You know, not always do you get to do that with Davis Cup.  When we won the Australian Open, we were on a flight four hours later back into the heat of battle.  When you win the French Open, you're over to Queen's back in the soup again.

This is going to be a great one to kind of just celebrate and enjoy and really let sink in what we've done.

Q.  How has it been for you being in this sort of tying‑a‑ribbon‑on‑things stage of your career?

BOB BRYAN:  I think that's the reason why we've been playing so well, is because we have everything.  Everything now feels like a bonus.  It just feels like we're adding nuts and whipped cream and cherries to our great career.

We said that a few years ago:  if we retire today, we feel like we've done it all.  Let's go have some fun and add to whatever this is.

Q.  People came mostly for the women's final.  You had it nearly full by the end.  Can you talk about how much the entertainment factor matters to you?

MIKE BRYAN:  That's always big for us, is to realize it's not just tennis, it's entertainment for the fans.  Looking around and seeing a full house is really special, especially at Wimbledon on Centre Court.  It's just a really good feeling to play a match that means a lot to us and to see a lot of faces in the crowd.

To have it life on TV back in the States where our families could watch it just makes it that much more special.  But, yeah, you realize it's entertainment.

BOB BRYAN:  Yeah, I mean, it feels good to play in front of the English fans.  They really appreciate the history of doubles and the great history here at Wimbledon.  So you're playing in front of knowledgeable fans that you feel like they're enjoying the tennis.  That usually brings out better tennis in the players.

Q.  Did it feel like you may have gotten a little more air on your chest bump?  On a more serious note, do you recall when that became a thing for you?

MIKE BRYAN:  That was definitely one of our highest chest bumps.  A lot of adrenaline in the legs.

BOB BRYAN:  In the calves.

MIKE BRYAN:  I think Bob got higher.  I remember looking at your chest.  My head was under your yours.  He always lifts his legs.  Looks like he's way higher than me, but he's not.

Yeah, we started that back in college.  It's kind of been our thing.  We got it from the Jensen brothers.  We did it one of our first matches at Stanford.  The fraternity guys were calling out for it.  I think it was on the cover of the Stanford Daily News.  They called it the Bryan bump.  We kept doing it.

Q.  You mentioned before everything feels like a ribbon, a bonus at this point.  You don't want to talk about the calendar slam.  Are there other bonuses you have your eyes on?  I think you've never played Djokovic.  Would you like to beat him?  Is there somebody you would like to level the head‑to‑head with?

BOB BRYAN:  When we start out at the beginning of the year, the goal is to finish No. 1.  We're always looking at the team rankings.  That's really the biggest goal, to be at that ITF dinner holding up that trophy in Paris on stage wearing our suits.

In order to do that, you have to play well at the slams and the big ones.  Those are the tournaments that are really important to us.

MIKE BRYAN:  Probably like to hit 100 titles.  I think today was 91.  Then maybe try to finish No. 1 ten times.  This year would be nine, if we did it.  We got a pretty good lead.  Then try to get to Rio and get another medal.

Q.  What do you think about Dodig and Melo as doubles players, and what could they do to improve to be as successful as yourselves?

BOB BRYAN:  Obviously they're both great players.  Melo, he knows the doubles court really well.  He's beaten us before.  He has quick hands.  He's a tall guy.  He clogs the middle.

Dodig is a good player.  He's a good singles player.  He sees the ball well on the returns and he has a big serve.

They're tough players and they make it uncomfortable on any team they're facing.  You know, they just got to play more and get more experience and be in more moments like this.

MIKE BRYAN:  They played well today, though.  It was their first Grand Slam final.  They didn't come out nervous.  They started hot.  I felt like we had to play some of our best tennis to win.

You know, Melo played great against us in Davis Cup.  We'll have many more good tournaments in the future.

Q.  What do you think your best Wimbledon story is?

MIKE BRYAN:  There's been a lot of good stories here.  You've told that story where we got in a fistfight in the car after the first round a million time.  Good story.

Yeah, there are a ton.  Our first Wimbledon we made the Round of 16.  We played a three‑day match against Alex O'Brien and Sebastien Lareau.  We were chest bumping.  We were young.  Showing no respect for the older guys.

There were about 20 rain delays where we came back to the locker room.  We were sitting right next to them.  There were words said.  They wanted to kill us basically.

Q.  What did they say?

MIKE BRYAN:  Cocky punks.

BOB BRYAN:  Punks.  Going to kill you.  It was just the veterans giving the younger guys some heat.  We deserved it.  We were bouncing around and doing our thing.  We were only 20 years old at the time.

Those rain delays, it just made for really heated moments in a small locker room over at the old Court 2.  They have a small locker room in there.  Just kept going, collecting there, and hearing OB give us shit.

Q.  That was the same year that you got in a fight?

MIKE BRYAN:  No, that was '99.  Our fight was '06.

Q.  That was after Delic and Kerr?  Break that down.  11‑9 in the fifth, and then you start punching each other?

MIKE BRYAN:  It was weird because we won the match.  Usually you're really happy after winning the match.

We were in the car.  I said, You should have served a little better, Bob.  He took it personal and said something about my forehand.  Then I said something.  It just got worse and worse.

I just said, I hate you, or something.  Then he just gives me a little hit there, then I go there, and it just erupts into a full‑blown brawl.

BOB BRYAN:  We got our bags and you mule kicked me in the stomach.

MIKE BRYAN:  We're walking up the stairs to our house and Bob is behind me.  I give him one of these mule kicks and kick him up the stairs.

BOB BRYAN:  I ran up the stairs and then he slammed the bathroom door right in my face and locked it.  I tried to kick it down but I couldn't get through.  I saw his shiny guitar.  I picked it up and just splintered it.  That felt good, and that was the end of it.

MIKE BRYAN:  Then I hear everything is quiet.  I go downstairs and he's eating.  I pull up a chair and start eating dinner.

Q.  Where were your parents?

MIKE BRYAN:  They actually don't come over to Europe.

BOB BRYAN:  They're back home watching every match on the Internet.  We're on our own.  We behave a little better in front of our parents.

Q.  Have you talked to your dad yet?

MIKE BRYAN:  Haven't talked to my dad yet.  After every match we get a long email.  He's our biggest supporter.  He watches back at home.  He's just as excited as us.

I'm going to get home in a couple days, and he'll pick me up at the airport and he'll talk about the match all the way up to Camarillo.

BOB BRYAN:  If we win, he watches it four times.

MIKE BRYAN:  Then we'll see him at breakfast the next day at Camarillo.  He'll talk about the match.  The next day at lunch.  It's tennis, tennis, tennis.

It's awesome.  He's really enthusiastic.

BOB BRYAN:  He definitely helps us when we lose, too.  When we lose, we get 12 emails of every record we've ever accomplished, you know, every match we ever won for the year, recaps of what we're doing well.  We kind of read it, say, Okay, it's not that bad, and we bounce back.

Q.  You're flying during the final?

MIKE BRYAN:  We have flights for tomorrow, but we're thinking about staying for the Wimbledon ball tomorrow night.

Q.  How do you see the final going?

MIKE BRYAN:  The final?  I think it's Murray's destiny to win here.  You know, he's doing everything pretty well.  His game is just perfect for the grass.

He rose to the occasion at the Olympics.  I think he's got another good match in him.

But Djokovic is ridiculous.  He looked like a drone yesterday.

BOB BRYAN:  If Murray wins I win my little pool, draw pool.  We have a little in‑house draw pool.

Q.  Your thoughts on the tournament in L.A. being gone after 80 plus years.

BOB BRYAN:  I mean, it's a shame.  With the L.A. Tennis Club and Kramer, Stan Smith, all the great champions that came out of L.A. and the immense history there, it's hard to believe there's not a tournament.

Hopefully that L.A. Tennis Challenge becomes a premiere event and fans keep getting to come and see great tennis at least once a year, kids get to see exhibitions.  That's what inspired us, going down to the Volvo at the time, watching guys like Mack and Agassi.


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