Novak Djokovic appears to have a cakewalk through the first week of the U.S. Open, but things figure to get interesting as he pursues the Grand Slam in the second week.
The world No. 1 could potentially face No. 6 seed Matteo Berrettini, the Wimbledon runner-up, in the quarterfinals; world No. 4 and Olympic gold medalist Sascha Zverev, who is riding an 11-match winning streak, in the semis; and No. 2 Daniil Medvedev in the final.
Djokovic, who is also seeking his record 21st Grand Slam singles title in New York, will open next week against a qualifier before potentially facing German Jan-Lennard Struff, who took a set from the Serb at the 2020 Australian Open.
In the third round, Djokovic could meet former finalist Kei Nishikori or No. 27 seed David Goffin and in the fourth round is seeded to meet either Aslan Karatsev, whom he beat in the Australian Open semifinals, or Australian No. 14 seed Alex de Minaur.
Seven-time Grand Slam champion John McEnroe and defending champion Dominic Thiem are among those picking Djokovic to complete the Grand Slam.
“I think Novak is going to win two or four more [majors], perhaps deservedly be considered the overall greatest player that ever lived,” McEnroe said.
In the bottom half of the draw, No. 3 seed Stefanos Tsitsipas could face No. 2 Medvedev in the other semifinal. Both men are seeking their first major title.
Tsitsipas opens against 2012 U.S. Open winner and three-time major champion Andy Murray, now ranked No. 114 in the world, while Medvedev, the 2019 runner-up to Rafael Nadal, faces veteran Frenchman Richard Gasquet.
That is one of in several popcorn matches on the men’s side.
Unseeded Australian Nick Kyrgios, perhaps the most dangerous floater, will play gritty Spaniard Roberto Bautista Augt, while Brit Cam Norrie who is enjoying a breakout season, will play 18-year-old Spaniard Carlos Alcaraz.
Top-ranked American John Isner will face 20-year-old countryman Brandon Nakashima.
The ATP contributed reporting.