'It must be lonely out there': Lee lauds fiance Wozniacki

When it comes to pressure in big moments, former NBA star David Lee knows all about it.

The two-time All Star, who started his career with the New York Knicks, won an NBA championship with the Golden State Warriors in 2015.

But the humble giant (206 centimetres) says he knows only half of what his fiancee Caroline Wozniacki is going through as she prepares for Saturday night's Australian Open final.

"That's what we've laughed about before. I always say: you know, it's gotta be a lonely feeling out there," Lee told Fairfax Media.

"It's gotta be lonely because you don't have anyone to blame it on.

"Whereas I can say, my coach didn't do this or my teammate didn't do that, so it's a little bit of a different situation in a team sport."

Without teammates to lean on, Wozniacki has dragged herself out of the darkness and less than 18 months after being ranked 74 in the world, she's back competing on the biggest stage of all.

The Dane and her opponent Simona Halep enter the match looking for their first grand slam title, having both been twice unsuccessful in finals.

Halep has lost both of her attempts in French Open finals (2014, 2017), while Wozniacki has also lost two finals at the US Open (2009, 2014).

And while so much of the build-up has been around the pressure on both players to win their maiden slam, Lee has a much more measured approach.

"I think she's actually going through what every athlete goes through. To be in a big moment and not feel any pressure, that just doesn't make sense," Lee said.

"There isn't a tennis player that's been in a grand slam semi-final that has gotten to that moment and hasn't felt any pressure, that's just not realistic.

"And I know from playing basketball, every single superstar that I've either played with or against is feeling that exact same thing. And afterwards when you hit the big shot or you when you win the match you say - yeah I wasn't feeling any pressure.

"You can make it sound good after the fact."

The No.1 and 2 seeds have also come desperately close to elimination in the early rounds, with both Halep and Wozniacki saving multiple match points before even reaching the second week of the tournament.

Wozniacki was trailing Jana Fett 5-1 and 40-15 in the second round before producing an astonishing comeback.

Lee believes it was a significant moment mentally for Wozniacki.

"She faced a tough situation in that second round when she had every reason to give up," he said.

"By coming back in that match gave her new life and she's been playing really with house money this entire time and I think that's propelled her to continue to move forward."

This story 'It must be lonely out there': Lee lauds fiance Wozniacki first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.