This year's TDF seems incredibly important for every GC contender OTHER than LA.
If LA doesn't win, nobody will think of him as any less of a rider.
But if he does win, everyone else is screwed. Anyone who wins in 2011 and beyond, as well as AC, Sastre, and Pereiro in 06-09, will be seen as guys who won only because LA either didn't compete or wasn't in shape.
That's my take on it at least.