Novak Djokovic continues to cop a pasting from the world’s media, with a scathing editorial from The Daily Beast labelling him the “biggest jackass in professional sports.”
The World No.1 hasn’t received much sympathy after being defaulted from the US Open for hitting a line judge in the throat with a ball.
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But Marlow Stern of The Daily Beast has offered the most brutal take to date.
Declaring himself a fan of Djokovic when he first burst onto the scene, Stern said “Djokovic’s actions over the past five months have been so egregious they’ve forced me to reconsider.”
The Serb certainly hasn’t done himself any favours in 2020.
His disgraceful exit from the US Open came after some bizarre claims about the power of the mind to change the molecular composition of toxic food and water, a controversial stance on vaccinations and his role in the ill-fated Adria Tour.
According to American great Andy Roddick, Djokovic will always be the player fans love to hate.
“The last six months for him has been a PR debacle,” Roddick told Bill Reiter on CBS Sports Radio.
“At this stage in his career, because everyone has been so in love with Rafa [Nadal] and Roger [Federer] for such a long time, he’s kind of been the villain.
“He’s the guy that wants to shoot Bambi in a lot of tennis fans’ eyes.”
While admitting Djokovic was unlucky to hit the line judge with his frustrated swipe at the ball, Roddick said the disqualification was the right call.
“Super unlucky, but he put himself in a position where he was inviting bad luck into the equation by doing that,” Roddick said.
“There’s no walking out of it.
“The parts about it that bother me are the 20-minute conversation afterwards, the kind of not seeming overly concerned about the lady’s throat or whatever – and then skipping press afterwards – that rubbed me probably the wrong way more than the actual action.”
John McEnroe’s advice for Novak Djokovic
Djokovic's reputation - whether fair or not - will undoubtedly take a hit after he was booted from the New York grand slam during the first set of his fourth round clash against Pablo Carreno Busta.
Like the Serbian star, John McEnroe has also faced the ignominy of being defaulted from a grand slam tournament, becoming the first man to suffer such a fate when a series of code violations during his match against Mikael Pernfors saw him punted from the 1990 Australian Open.
The American accepted that his fiery personality made him a polarising figure in the world of tennis - a situation Aussie firebrand Nick Kyrgios can no doubt relate to.
McEnroe often fed off the negativity projected towards him and channelled the aggression into his own game.
The 61-year-old says Djokovic may need to do the same, as he faces an inevitable backlash from fans over the US Open incident.
“The pressure just got to him, I think,” McEnroe told ESPN.
“A lot's been going on off the court, it's obviously affected him and now whether he likes it or not he's going to be the bad guy for the rest of his career.
“If he embraces that role, I think he could recover. He's got a lot of things going for him, but this is obviously a stain that he's not going to be able to erase.
“It was a rookie mistake made by him to hit a ball back where he wasn't even looking where he was hitting it.
“He's been there and done that, and certainly I know from some experience that you've got to be careful out there.”
On Monday, the total financial penalty for Djokovic's disqualification was increased to $267,500 ($A370,000).
Djokovic was docked an additional $7,500 ($A10,000) for skipping the mandatory post-match news conference.
The maximum fine for that infraction is listed as $20,000 ($A27,500) in the grand slam rule book - the most a player can be fined for unsportsmanlike conduct - although Djokovic was slugged $10,000 ($A13,750) for that violation.
Those two fines are in addition to losing his $250,000 ($A345,000) in prize money for making it to the fourth round.