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RAW Highlights: 2023 US Open Finals

Coco Gauff and Novak Djokovic Won Big Time

RAW Highlights: 2023 US Open Finals
Serbia's Novak Djokovic kisses the trophy after defeating Russia's Daniil Medvedev during the US Open tennis tournament men's singles final match/TIMOTHY A. CLARY / AFP

Here’s What Went Down

Novak Djokovic, the greatest ever to swing a racket…

In breaking tennis news, Novak Djokovic adds another Grand Slam title to his illustrious career and American Coco Gauff captures the first slam of her career. Let’s check out how it all went down and review some of the biggest moments of the 2023 US Open.

Djokovic Wins Third Grand Slam This Year

The man continues to defy Father Time and at 37 years old he devoured the competition at the US Open, winning every match in straight sets except one, his third-round clash with fellow Serbian Laslo Djere, in which he roared back after dropping the first two sets, 4-6, 4-6, and went on to advance courtesy of taking the next three sets, 6-1, 6-1, 6-3.

Djokovic would ultimately defeat the talented brat, Daniil Medvedev, in the finals in three straight sets, 6-3, 7-6 (7-5), 6-3, to win his third slam of the year and a record 24th Grand Slam singles title.

But Joker’s celebration might have been even more inspiring than his record-setting victory as he headed to the sidelines to embrace his daughter, a flaxen-haired cherub, who hugged her daddy like he was the best player in the history of the sport. Wait a minute? What?

Anyway, that moment alone gave every man who ever raised a little girl a bit of a lump in their throat, whether they cared to admit to it or not. But the main event was yet to come.

Celebrating his 24th Grand Slam title he changed out of his polo at midcourt and into a pale blue and yellow T-shirt with a picture of him and Kobe Bryant in the center with “Mamba” emblazoned across the top. On the back the number “24” was printed, a tribute to the late basketball legend’s jersey number.

A pure, unadulterated class act is Novak Djokovic, the greatest ever to swing a racket.

Coco Gauff Becomes First American to Win US Open Since 2017

In other US Open news, the 19-year-old tennis phenom broke through to the big time after defeating No. 2 in the world, Aryna Sabalenka, of Belarus. It was an epic comeback after Gauff lost the first set, 6-2, and seemed a bit out of her depth.

However, that was short-lived as the face of women’s tennis in America became increasingly aggressive and began to dictate the pace and flow of the match. After winning the second set, 6-3, Gauff took command and vanquished the Belarusian with a 6-2 third set and match victory, punctuated by a blazing backhander down the line to put a bow on the win.

After the match point, Gauff fell to the ground and allowed the moment to wash over her. Once upright, she hugged her opponent and according to ESPN’s SportsCenter X account, Gauff “took a moment to soak it all in after winning her first Grand Slam title.”

The moment ESPN wrote about was Gauff clearly praying and former Super Bowl-winning NFL head coach, Tony Dungy, responded by writing, “I hate to break this to you SportsCenter but Coco Gauff was not ‘soaking it all in’ at this moment. She was praying. She has been very open about her Christian faith in the past. It seems pretty obvious what she is doing here.”

If there was any question as to what she was doing, as if her kneeling with her fingers folded wasn’t clear enough, Gauff said afterward, “Oh my goodness. It means so much to me. I feel like I’m a little bit in shock in this moment. That French Open loss was a heartbreak for me. I realized God puts you through tribulations and trials. This makes this moment even more sweeter than I could imagine.

“I don’t pray for results. I just ask that I get the strength to give it my all. Whatever happens, happens. I’m so blessed in this life. I’m just thankful for this moment. I don’t have any words for it, to be honest.”

Gauff became the 11th teenager to win a Grand Slam singles tournament and is now the No. 3 player in the world, while her opponent, Aryna Sabalenka, moved up one spot to No. 1.

Odds & Ends at the Open

Tennis rumors swirled as to the reported celebrities seen at the US Open. Let’s list just a few of the star-studded attendees, many of whom wouldn’t know that love means nothing when you’re playing tennis. You get it, they wouldn’t.

These are the glamorous guys and gals who are simply there to see and be seen. Eva Longoria, Jon Hamm, Emily Ratajkowski, Sting, Nicole Kidman, Keith Urban, Hasan Minhaj, Laverne Cox, Andy Cohen, and Kylie Jenner to name a few who hit the gene pool lottery.

There was also a group wearing shirts saying, “End Fossil Fuels,” disrupting the proceedings, and a dude who glued his feet to the ground of the stands. Yes, his feet, not his shoes, all in an attempt to draw publicity to global warming. Chants of “Kick them out! Kick them out!” rose to a crescendo and 49 minutes later the players returned after retreating to their dressing rooms.

Don’t these people get it? When you interrupt a US Open semi-final or blockade a street so people can’t get to work, do you really think that’s helping your cause? Couldn’t they have just left glue feet there for a few days to think about it? Hopefully, next time they will.

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