NEW YORK -- Andy Roddick enjoyed a relatively easy first-round match on Monday at the U.S. Open, defeating Stephane Robert of France 6-3, 6-2, 6-2. Roddick, the No. 9 seed, lost his serve only once and broke Robert in half of his 12 service games. Completing the match in one hour and 42 minutes was important for Roddick, who recently suffered through a battle of mononucleosis.
On his health, Roddick said, "It's going the right way. To be honest, once you decide to play, I think you throw all the excuses and everything else out the window. If I decide to play, then it's up to me to give 100 percent of what I have. So it's not something I really want to discuss too much from this point forward. I'm not going to analyze it every day."
Like most Roddick press conferences, his meeting with the media after his victory over Robert covered subjects beyond his own tennis game.
Roddick, a longtime Miami Heat fan, was asked about his team's acquisition of free agents LeBron James and Chris Bosh.
"I'm sick of defending my fanhood," said Roddick. "I was going to the games in '01, when they were paying people to come. I was in Boca (Raton) for a long time and went to four or five home games a year. I'm excited.
"I was just hoping and praying they'd re-sign Dwayne (Wade). Then when Bosh came, I was ecstatic. Then when LeBron came it was bordering on ridiculous. Like everyone else, I'm excited to see how it all goes together."
Roddick's passion for Miami's basketball team, however, is dwarfed by his admiration for Davis Cup teammate James Blake, who was honored during Monday night's opening ceremonies for overcoming scoliosis to become a top player.
"I'm extremely biased," said Roddick. "I'm a massive James Blake fan. His career is one thing, but I also like his character. I like the way he goes about his business. He's been a real good friend to me."
Blake, a wild-card entry in this year's Open, has struggled of late, but is hopeful for another memorable run.
Said Roddick: "My biggest hope for James is that he can get healthy enough to have a run that he would like."