Panthers QB Newton could have career in tennis, says Isner


Forget NFL, Cam Newton could have easily been a successful tennis player according to American John Isner, who described the Carolina Panthers quarterback as the "best athlete I've ever seen".

Isner advanced to the second round of the Australian Open on Tuesday but the 10th seed still had time to field questions about his beloved Panthers and Newton.

Newton led the Panthers past the Seattle Seahawks at the weekend, sealing a place in the NFC Championship game against the Arizona Cardinals.

Asked about Newton's ability and whether he could play tennis, North Carolina-born Isner said: "He could do whatever he wants. He's the best athlete I've ever seen.

"The guy is ripped, he's tall, he runs so fast."

On the Panthers and their quest for a maiden Super Bowl, Isner added: "Still got two more to go. I love 'em, so it's fun for me to watch them do it.

"I've sort of taken on their mantra of 'keep pounding.' I'm going to try to make that my theme this year. That's what they always say.

"They've had a great year and are still going."

Isner was speaking after his 6-3 7-6 (9-7) 6-3 win over Jerzy Janowicz at Melbourne Park.

The 30-year-old fired down 37 aces and tallied 61 winners compared to just 29 from Janowicz.

"It's a tough first round, for sure. I mean, given his credentials, he's a big player. He was hitting some big serves out there," said Isner, who had his arm wrapped up.

"I stayed composed in that second-set tie-breaker. It was very critical. I was able to get that one under my belt, win the third set pretty easy. Three sets, not that long out there. I'm very happy."