W roundtable: Serena's singleness

Serena Williams said she doesn't want to date "for the next decade or so." Do you agree with her decision and will it mean anything to her game?

By putting personal life on backburner, Serena can finish strong

By Jane McManus

After a string of heartbreaks, it's always a good idea to get out of the dating pool, dry off and sit in the sun for a while.

I know it might seem counter-intuitive, but it can't be easy for Serena Williams to find a guy (even though Common seemed like a keeper.) She has to question any dude's motives. Is he in it just to write a tell-all "I Did Serena" memoir? Is he broke? Has he slept with every other player on the WTA Tour? Maybe just Ciara and Rihanna?

Serena can't be too careful.

This is a good time for her to focus on her game. She is getting to the biological autumn of her professional tennis career and she's had some injuries in recent years. Williams has always been seen as the most dominating woman currently playing -- if only she were completely dedicated to her career.

So, Serena is being smart here.

Now is her chance to rack up a few more majors and change the narrative. Skip the dating scene Serena, and work on your game. That way when they retire your metaphorical number, they won't talk about how you could have been so much greater, but how you finished so strong.

Then you can get the line of suitors background checked.

Men will always be there, pro career won't

By Adena Andrews

Serena Williams, or "Re Re" as I affectionately call her, is my best friend in my head; therefore she and I have had this conversation about dating plenty of times.

Slaven Vlasic/Getty Images

Serena Williams says she will stay away from the dating game for now.

When she was dating rapper Common, I was all for it and thought he could be the one. This is the rapper who refers to women as queens and defines the two sexes as cut from the same cloth. I was already picking out venues for their wedding, but it fell apart.

Then, this Canadian rapper Drake, came along. I suspected he was just trying to get citizenship by latching on to a successful American woman. I hate to say I told you so to her, but that relationship also blew up in smoke. I think Rihanna might have had something to do with it.

After two publically failed relationships, and many more we have lamented over in private while watching episodes of "Bridezilla," I am completely fine with "Re Re" not dating for a while. When you continually fail at something, you start to think you're the problem and break down your personality and psyche. That's destructive to a professional athlete who has to be on top of her game all the time.

She needs to focus on bringing hardware home from the Olympics, which is just 81 days away. The men will always be there, but gold medals won't. I'm proud of her for taking time for herself and her career.

Love hurts, especially when it doesn't work out. The only love she should be focused on now is in her match scores.

Love may find Serena even if she isn't looking

By Sarah Spain

I can't tell you how many times I've sworn off men for good. Almost as many times as I've said "I'm never drinking again" the morning after a bender.

I'm sure you won't be surprised to hear neither of those proclamations ever stuck. Not only did I always get back out there on the market, I snagged a keeper with whom I currently share a mortgage and a dog. And I've definitely been known to enjoy an adult beverage or two; at a ballgame, at a dinner party or on a Sunday night after my favorite basketball team falls to 3-1 down in their playoff series against a No. 8 seed.

I feel for Serena Williams, trust me I do. I understand the mindset you have to be in to say you'll go dateless for a decade, I've been there before. But they always say the minute you give up and stop looking is when love finds you. It was true for me and there's a good chance it'll be true for her, too.

Serena could learn from her big sister

By Melissa Jacobs

Here's the deal: Serena Williams clearly had some undisclosed recent bad experience with a boy that spawned her "won't date for 10 years" comment, because unless you are 16 and still think boys are gross, you don't say things like that unprovoked.

Of course Serena will date again. And she'll probably continue to do so with men similar to exes Common and Drake. But if she wants a solution, she should take a page out of the Venus Williams Guide to Love -- date down. From 2007-10 Venus dated golf phenom-turned-bust-turned-bald Hank Kuehne. She was happy and well-balanced, winning Wimbledon in 2007 and '08.

A guy like Kuehne isn't a threat. He is not going to walk into a bar and have hordes of women throwing themselves at him because he looks rich and famous. A Kuehne-type is not going to ask for much space in the shoe closet. In fact, there is no sliver of spotlight he would steal.

So when Serena dates again, perhaps her first stop should be the Nationwide Tour. I hear Craig Stadler is making a comeback.

Vow of singleness won't last

By Amanda Rykoff

We've all been there. Every single woman has had the "That's it, I'm swearing off men!" or "I'm never dating again" moment after a bad breakup. But of course it doesn't stick and you end up agreeing to be set up on that blind date with your friend's co-worker's cousin ("Hey, you're both single and like baseball!") and you're back out there again. Serena Williams just had her "I'm never dating again" moment.

Serena is famous not only for her powerful serve and devastating groundstrokes, but for being famously emotional. Love it or hate it, it's part of her game and what makes her so good. I have a feeling she's only slightly exaggerating when she says she doesn't want to date "for the next decade or so." Ten years is a long time. But I do think what she's saying is that she doesn't want to put herself in situations where being vulnerable emotionally as a result of a relationship may compromise her performance on the court. If she needs to refocus on her game and she thinks swearing off relationships is a way to make this happen, good for her. The Grand Slam season and the 2012 Olympics all occur in the next six months, so her "vow of singleness" comes at the right time.

But as much as she displays super-human feats on the court, Serena is human. Later this year (after the U.S. Open has concluded, of course), don't be surprised if Page Six has a blind item asking "what famous tennis player who recently swore off men was seen canoodling at the 40/40 club..."

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