An intriguing thought, but it doesn't really sound like our man. The 6-1 TB was incredibly tame, though, I grant you. If it was deliberate, it must have been subconscious, if that makes sense.
Not an intriguing thought but more like a pattern i.e. if you are paying attention. Some players are known to dump or tank tournaments. Personally I don't see anything wrong with it. Nadal, for example, is a pure strategist - for a number of reasons. Last year he went out to Tsonga in Queens but made the Wimbledon final. Same thing happened in both Montreal and Cincy. He went out early but made the USO final. Would have won on both occasions if not for Nole. He does it to keep the expectation low before going into a major like Wimbledon or USO or AO, but when it comes to RG, he doesn't need to. He's supremely confident on that surface. In fact, likes going into it as the favourite. Also, the ATP schedule is a bit too long for him. Andy tends to do it as well. But let's not say he tanks it but rather he doesn't give his all. I believe these are strategies a lot of players follow in order to prioritize tournaments and also to keep themselves injury-free just prior a big major tournament. Federer is very smart at scheduling and his tennis allows him to stay injury-free, so that's a bit of an exception. But he too a few times had dumped tournaments by losing early. One in particular comes to mind. Anyway, it's an important strategy for players in a sport like tennis.