Dropoff In Play
However, his performance on the professional circuit fell into a steep, uncharacteristic dive following a strong start in 1993. Following the 1993 French Open in Paris, Courier "suddenly lost his edge. Despite taking frequent breaks to get his head and his game back together, Courier rarely has been a threat during the last five years, although he did comeback somewhat to reach the world's eight ranking in 1995," Hickok Sports wrote. To resurrect his career, Courier in 1997 parted ways with longtime coach Jose Higueras and decided to train with Harold Solomon, a former Top 10 player later credited with saving the career of Jennifer Capriati.
Courier excelled late his career on the Davis Cup team. By winning the deciding fifth sets of five-set matches in 1998 and 1999, he became the first American to do so since the competition originated in 1900. Other noteworthy twilight career achievements include winning the U.S. Men's Clay Court Championship in 1998 and a quarterfinalist showing at the duMaurier Open in Canada in 1999. But about nine months later, on May 8, 2000, Courier announced that he was retiring from professional tennis.
After retiring, Courier became coach of the U.S. Davis Cup team. "I think the players are happy, especially the younger players, to have Jim Courier around and have his insight and experience. When he talks, they listen," U.S. Captain Patrick McEnroe told the Associated Press upon Courier's appointment. "We want the guys to do well individually, but this is about the U.S. team, and who better epitomizes what the team is about than Courier?" McEnroe asked rhetorically.