Roddick once pushed Djokovic up against a locker

by: Matt Cronin October 03, 2013

In a discussion on Fox Sports Live, Andy Roddick says he and Novak Djokovic once got into a physical confrontation in the locker room. Roddick said it happened at the U.S. Open, presumably in 2008. Before his match against Djokovic that year, Roddick had been asked about the Serb's latest injury. At the time, Djokovic had developed a reputation for retiring frequently, and the American wondered in a joking manner if his foe might have "a back and a hip [injury]? And a cramp, bird flu or SARS?"

The comments received tremendous publicity and got back to Djokovic, who was enraged. After he beat Roddick in the quarterfinals, Djokovic struck back at Roddick and the crowd during his on-court interview, during which the fans rained boos down upon him.

"I am really happy playing against Roddick on his court and in his city in his favorite tournament, so to win against him is a huge effort,” Djokovic said on court at the time. “That's not nice, anyhow, to say in front of this crowd that I have 16 injuries and I am faking it. I have nothing against anybody. Andy was saying that I have 16 injuries in the last match, so obviously I don't, right? Like it or not, it's like that. They (the crowd) are already against me because they think I am faking everything, so sorry."

Roddick later took part of the blame for what he said was a misunderstanding, but on Fox Sports Live revealed for the first time what happened:

“I got in an in-the-locker-room, after-a-match confrontation with this tennis player one time...I won't say his name, I'll just say it rhymes with ‘Schmovak Schmokovic’...and we got into at U.S. Open one time,” Roddick said. “I was kind of talking trash and he came out and beat the pants off of me as he would, but then kind of chirped afterward and he came straight in, I went right up to him and had him up against the locker, but then I realized his trainer was about a little bit bigger than Donovan [McNabb, a former NFL quarterback, who does the Fox show with Roddick] here, and I kind of checked myself. My trainer is about 5-foot-8, 130, and can dodge raindrops. I kind of backed off real quick. I was about to get railroaded from the side.”

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