SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS) – It took defending champion Novak Djokovic five sets and almost five hours to beat Andy Murray in the Australian Open in Melbourne.

Despite the stamina needed to prevail in a long tennis match, John Madden told the KCBS morning crew only one sport comes close to the physical demands of playing professional football.

“Each sport has toughness that’s different,” Madden said. “When you determine the toughest sport, to me it would be how long you have to have between times you can do it… Tennis they can play every day, so that can’t be that tough. Baseball they can play every day, two some days. Basketball, what do they play, four times a week?… Football, it’s once a week. To me, that’s next to the toughest, with the toughest being boxing, which doesn’t get a lot of play anymore. Boxing, you can really only fight once a month.”

The NFL Pro Bowl, traditionally played the week after the Super Bowl, generates little fan interest.

“I think that’s why the NFL placed the Pro Bowl the week before the Super Bowl (this year),” Madden said. “I don’t think there’s a heck of people that really look forward to it, but it’s not as bad as it’s thought about… It’s not equal to last week’s championship weekend or next week’s Super Bowl, but it’s better than nothing I guess.”

The Pro Bowl will be played Sunday in Hawaii. (6:15)

Listen to the John Madden segment live weekday mornings at 8:15 on KCBS All News 740 AM/106.9 FM.

(Copyright 2011 by CBS San Francisco. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)


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