Archive for the 'Golf' Category

22
Aug
07

Tiger Woods has already ruined the FedEx Cup

Tiger WoodsYou know what’s fun?

Writing a column that follows this formula:

Tiger Woods is hurting golf by skipping the name of event here because insert logical reason .

Not only is it entertaining, it also requires intense brainstorming and reporting.

Enter one of the Cut’s favorite sites, Chicagosports.com.

Ed Sherman has captivated us with his recent column on how Tiger Woods skipping the Barclays Classic is hurting the PGA Tour and its new FedEx Cup “playoff” system.

Never heard that one before, let’s hear what you have to say Sherman.

One suggestion though, you should probably start by telling us how good of shape Tiger is in, and how this contrasts him wanting to take a week off. Okay, go!

Tiger Woods talked constantly about how his intense conditioning program enabled him to handle the brutally hot weather in Tulsa. He said all those hours of running, lifting and stretching paid off when he won the PGA Championship.

Mission complete.

On Friday, though, Woods suddenly didn’t feel so great, announcing he wasn’t up to playing in the first event in the PGA Tour’s new playoff series, the Barclays Classic.

Bummer.

So what’s the deal? Woods, muscles popping out of his red shirt, looks as if he could make a bid to qualify for the U.S. Olympic team in the decathlon, if so inclined.

He better not. A bunch of people would be pissed if Tiger started destroying the decathlon as well as golf.

Yes, contending in a major is taxing, a mental and physical grind**, even when the conditions are in the 70s with a nice wind blowing. But runners-up Woody Austin and Ernie Els also endured the pressure, not to mention the heat, and they are playing this week.

**Note: Ed Sherman has won the Masters 7 times, the U.S. Open thrice and the PGA Championship once. Also, Woody Austin and Ernie Els need all the cash (and FedEx points) they can get.

Continue reading ‘Tiger Woods has already ruined the FedEx Cup’

15
Aug
07

Casey Martin doesn’t know whether or not to book a tee time

Tiger and his carAround here, we don’t really understand the disdain for Tiger Woods (posing here with his actual car for the family album).

And on top of all his dominance, Tiger is expanding into the golf course design field.

Exciting stuff.

Problem is, we can’t tell which story about his new course is true.

Just because of habit (a habit we are desperately trying to break), we first went to espn.com (ESPN is one of the only networks to which Mr. Woods grants interviews).

All the basic press conference recap was there — course is going to be in North Carolina. Tiger is really, super, extremely pumped about it. Blah blah blah.

But what kind of caught our eye was the fact that Tiger said the course would be walking only — no carts. Espn.com’s story cleared this up:

Woods and The Cliffs owner Jim Anthony said they wanted High Carolina to be a walking-only course during the news conference. Afterward, Woods clarified they’ll “strongly encourage” golfers to walk but won’t require it.

OK, fair enough. I thought the no-carts thing wasn’t very PR-ish for a first press conference. On to si.com:

The Cliffs at High Carolina will be located near Asheville, N.C., and will allow only walkers, something Woods said was key to the deal.

What? Someone be trippin’.

So, we looked around some more. Forbes agrees with ESPN, walking will only be “strongly encouraged.” Bloomberg says it’s walking only.

Strangely, all of these stories are written essentially the same, same quotes, same sentences, same analogies. Just this one line is different in each. Someone’s wrong and we want to know who it is. Could it be that ESPN got a scoop that’s actually true?

13
Aug
07

Woody Austin knows he’s better than Tiger Woods

Woody Austin

If you happened to catch the PGA Championship this weekend, there was one name on the leaderboard not usually chasing Tiger Woods: Woody Austin.

In addition to stealing all the shirts from your municipal-course pro, Austin is know for his extreme self-confidence and disillusion about his golfing skill.

Think a older, louder Rory Sabbatini (without the Nike deal that provides him with acceptable golf apparel.)

Now Austin did come in second, just two shots behind Tiger. And he outlasted Ernie Els, one of the world’s top players. But, second is second. Lots of guys lose to Tiger, and I hate to tell you Woody, you’re just another runner-up.

But with all disregard for reality, Austin feels he’s the next Phil Mickelson (the quotes speak for themselves).

I have the almost identical personality in a way that he does,” Austin said of Tiger. ”He always says, ‘I want to be in the last group on Sunday.’ I want to be there just as much as he does.

I bet you do Woody. Could you tell us about Tiger’s course-searing 63 on Friday?

I went over his round and over my round, and I outplayed him from tee to green,” Austin said. ”Seven shots I gave up in one round. A person in my position cannot give that man that much cushion. . . .I don’t think anybody plays any better than I do when I’m on. I know that’s crazy, but I can hit any shot anybody in the world can hit. But it’s hard to do when you’re afraid of it — and that’s the fight I have every day.

I, too, hate it when I outplay people that beat me by 7 shots. But, I can think of one person who plays better than you when he’s “on” Woody. Any guesses? (Hint: He beat you yesterday to win his 13th major.)

Please, take Rory as an example. I’ll go out on a limb and say you’re not going to be the first to challenge Tiger on a Sunday. So keep it locked up. Before you’re just a sideshow like Sabbatini.

30
Jul
07

Now that’s a pink slip

Jay WilliamsonI’m sure you were all glued to the Canadian Open (aka Mike Weir’s homecoming parade) this weekend.

But for those of you who didn’t catch it, there was an amazing occurrence up north.

Jay Williamson, who’s known for, well, nothing, fired his caddy on the 15th hole of the first round.

Now, in the golf world, that’s fairly rare in itself. But Williamson went a step further and got a new looper from the gallery.

Don Alexander, 69, a fairly good amateur in his day, was pulled out of the crowd to carry the 100-lb. bag for the last four holes.

Even more hilarious was Alexander’s logic for following Williamson’s group:

Every year I love to go out and watch a group that nobody’s going to follow except maybe their girlfriends,” Alexander, who played in the 1962 Canadian Open as an amateur, told the Toronto Star. “I love golf and I want to see how these guys make their living out here. I got a pretty good group there, with (Scott) Gump, Williamson and (John) Mallinger. They shot some pretty good scores. There were only a few of us watching them the whole way.

Ha! A good group with Scott Gump, Williamson and John Mallinger. If anything, our buddy Don is easy to please.

Continue reading ‘Now that’s a pink slip’

27
Jul
07

$5K for Bosworth? I’m in

Lance wins...againHave you ever wondered how lucrative a career in public speaking could be?

No? Me neither.

But I never realized the amount of money athletes can make giving motivational speeches (sometimes after their prime, sometimes while they’re still active).

Anyway, Direct Sportslink will hook you up with your favorite athlete for a nominal fee. Note: “nominal” = holy shit I’ve never seen that much money.

Here’s a list of some of the celebs DS can hook you up with, and what you get for your money.*

*fabricated by yours truly

1. In the highest tier: There is only one athlete, and I’m sure you’ve guessed which douc…I mean celebrity garnishes the highest wages.

Yep, it’s Lance. For “above $100,000” he will give you the most inspirational speech of your life. Also included, Lance will show you how to redirect steroid implications into lawsuits against the French media. In addition, you will also receive political advice and also a free naked photo of yourself and Lance riding tandem. Matthew McConaughey, please stop calling.

2. Second tier — $75,000-$100,000: There are several athletes in this category, including George Foreman, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Phil Jackson, Joe Montana and Gary Player (honestly?). But most valuable in this category is Tom Brady. For only about four times your yearly salary, the three-time Super Bowl champion will teach you to impregnate has-been actresses, completely get out of caring for the child, and then land a super model. And then blow it. Seems like he could charge more.

3. Third tier — $50,000-$75,000: The first member of this category is Hank Aaron. Honestly, he’s probably worth a lot more, and one of the only athletes I would pay to hear speak. Others include the entire lineup of quarterback broadcasters (Troy Aikman, Steve Young, Dan Marino), Raymond Floyd, Hulk Hogan, Nolan Ryan and Oscar De La Hoya. We’re going to highlight Pat Riley though. Your fee gets you a nice soft leather chair to sit back and watch someone else do your work. Also, you’ll get a pink slip to give the person doing your work after they’ve got you to an acceptable level. Lastly, you get a free loop hole that Riley can show you how to use to get out of your job as soon as things start going south.

Continue reading ‘$5K for Bosworth? I’m in’

23
Jul
07

No one saw that coming

Serg!Well, I don’t want to say I told you so.

Who am I kidding? Yes I do. And I did.

Sergio Garcia, leading for most of the British Open, managed to throw away the tournament to everyone’s favorite leprechaun – Padraig Harrington.

I must admit, I was really worried at first.

I didn’t get to hear Mike Tirico’s soothing hymns until about the 17th hole of regulation on Sunday. And at that point, it appeared Serg till had a very good shot at pulling it off.

That was until the 18th and final hole, where Garcia missed about an 8-foot putt for the win.

And that was it.

Yes, it went to a playoff. But when you miss a semi-short putt for the win in a major championship — your first major championship — you ain’t winnin’ no playoff.

Continue reading ‘No one saw that coming’

19
Jul
07

Blogged down

Tiger at the BritishObviously, I’ve got no problem with blogs.

Here at the Cut, blogs are held in the highest regard.

However, it’s really frustrating when members of the mainstream media attempt to start blogs just for the sake of doing it.

The meetings that lead to these debacles are hilarious I’m sure, with talking heads pounding fists and yelling for an idea that’s “now” that the “kids will dig.”

Jason Sobel’s golf blog on espn.com is a perfect example of this abuse. Now Sobel’s a really good writer, so all of the blame can’t fall on him. But according to his posts, he updates his British Open blog about every 45 seconds, which is fairly ridiculous.

And when you start updating your forced blog that often, you get posts like this:

1:21 p.m.: I said we’d have more on the Celsius thermometer, and you can now stop holding your breath. In a piece on why Americans keep winning the Open, I alluded to the fact that one major obstacle U.S. players (not to mention fans and reporters) have to overcome is trying to convert the temperature from Celsius to Fahrenheit just to figure out how damn cold it is around here. Well, reader Andrew in New Hampshire checked in with this, uh, sort-of-easy formula:…

So the “Celsius” theme dies out eventually and then we start in on the food:

As for the other food being served here, well, let’s just say I’d pay about 5 pounds for one of those Augusta National pimento cheese sandwiches right about now. The food is — how can I put this delicately? — awful. Just horrible, really. Sorry, don’t mean to offend any Brits, but tomatoes, baked beans and mushrooms just aren’t my idea of a good breakfast.

Jason, sorry, over here, yea, could we maybe have some information on what’s happening in the British Open? Maybe who’s leading, what the course is like?

Yes, the world’s best players are here this week. But there are also a whole bunch you’ve probably never heard of — some of which have interesting names, if nothing else. A few of my favorites: Desvonde Botes, Achi Sato, Ben Bunny, Tomohiro Kondo and David Shacklady.

Thanks.

So obviously there isn’t enough to write about from Carnoustie, so let’s just take it down a few notches, k Jase?