Commentary

April Power Rankings: Bottom 5

Updated: May 1, 2013, 10:54 AM ET
By Jon Levey | Special to ESPN.com

Not everybody in and around tennis has been firing aces and winners. Here are April's Bottom 5 of the month:

1. USTA The governing body did right to bump U.S. Open prize money to $50 million by 2017 and move the finals back to the second weekend in 2015, doing away with Super Saturday. However, they also plan to upgrade the U.S. Open facilities into the "most modern and fan- and player-friendly tennis center in the world." So a stadium court roof and sub $12 burger are post-modern luxuries?

2. Between-point time violations Good idea, shoddy execution. Not only is it haphazardly enforced, but players have no way of knowing if they're up against the clock. It's bad enough line-calling has been turned into a game show.

3. Ivo Karlovic Contrary to initial rumors, Karlovic did not suffer a stroke. He was, however, admitted to a Miami hospital with viral meningitis. When asked if he needed anything, the always affable Karlovic requested 1,000 rankings points.

4. Russian men The country that twice won the Davis Cup in the previous decade does not currently have a player in the top 25, and the highest-ranked players -- Mikhail Youzhny (31), Nikolay Davydenko (43) and Dmitry Tursunov (58) -- are all on the wrong side of 30. See what embracing capitalism does to a nation's tennis.

5. Janko Tipsarevic After winning his first seven matches of the season, Tipsarevic, ranked No. 10, has gone 3-8. After losing to Dmitrov in Monte Carlo Tipsarevic tweeted: "Taking some time off&this has nothing to do with forehands and backhands no more&By the way&I am not taking a holiday&Just a few days off to clear my mind&" Sounds like somebody needs a hug and a new tattoo.

Jon Levey is a New York-based freelance writer.