And for 17-year-old Molleker it marked a first tour-level victory of his career as he racked up 26 aces to beat Jan-Lennard Struff 6-4 6-7 (7-5), 6-3 in one hour, 55 minutes, teeing up a clash with second-seeded Lucas Pouille for a spot in the quarter-finals.
The victory means the past six Grand Slam titles have been won by either Nadal or Federer with the next generation of players finding it hard to break the veterans' stranglehold on the game.
Although Nadal subsequently received treatment on his forearm it seemingly had little adverse effect and, after a second break of serve, his 11th triumph was secured at the fifth time of asking when Thiem sent a return long.
Not much more of a daunting task than doing so against Nadal at the French Open, where he is now 11-0 in finals and 86-2 overall.
Federer took home the title at the Australian Open earlier this year and Nadal completed the defense of his Roland Garros title last week.
Nadal's welling eyes during the trophy ceremony provided a moment of vulnerability after a match that had very few of them, apart from a weird interlude in the third set when Nadal abruptly stopped mid-service game with a disconcerted expression and left the baseline to request medical attention for a cramping left hand. Those conditions might have contributed to the cramping that affected Nadal about two hours into the final, at 2-1 in the third set.
While boosting his Wimbledon hopes, Roger Federer's decision to skip the French Open has dented the Parisian Grand Slam event and hurt the very sport that made him a global superstar, Mats Wilander told Reuters.
"It's been a while since I have played matches and obviously I do not want to be on a three-match losing streak after Delpo, Kokkinakis and now here", Federer said.
Nadal moved, once again, to within three grand slams of the Swiss.
"Now I have to come back to speak with my team and decide what's better for my body".
"I know how to play against him".
"Physically, I enjoyed (it) more watching him on the couch", Thiem said with a smile.
"Still, I'm disappointed, of course".
He added: "You can't be frustrated always if somebody has more money than you, if somebody has a bigger house than you, if somebody has more grand slams than you".
But, while you expect finance is a factor in a potential decision to pursue an even more lucrative deal away from Nike, it feels like there is more to this than meets the eye.
The number of Grand Slam finals now contested by Nadal, extending his position at second on the men's Open Era leaderboard, behind Federer (30) and ahead of Djokovic (21) and Lendl (19).