Tiger Vs. Phil: A Rivalry Only in Vegas

Only in the city that promoted Mayweather-McGregor as a fair fight and Liberace as a sex symbol could Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson be considered rivals. “The Match” is fresh evidence that Las Vegas can distort any reality just long enough to separate a rube from his billfold.

Screen Shot 2018-12-04 at 6.45.36 PM

Continue reading “Tiger Vs. Phil: A Rivalry Only in Vegas”

A 10-Handicap at TPC Sawgrass? Pros Predict a Train Wreck

By lunchtime Friday at the Players Championship, the normally fearsome TPC Sawgrass was looking almost toothless, with the scoring average hovering around 71 and the cut likely to fall under par for only the third time in the last 20 years.

The low scoring has surprised a lot of veterans who have endured tougher times at this Pete Dye brute, not least two-time winner Tiger Woods.

“It’s in perfect shape, it’s just playing really short. It’s so hot out here, the ball’s flying. We’re probably playing close to a club less than we normally do,” he said after a second round 71. “The cut right now is under par, which is unheard of around here.”

The course may be playing relatively easy for the best, but how about for the rest?

Screen Shot 2018-10-30 at 1.56.21 PM
The infamous 17th hole at TPC Sawgrass.

Continue reading “A 10-Handicap at TPC Sawgrass? Pros Predict a Train Wreck”

The Agony of Augusta National

Heartbreak at the Masters is like a doomed first love affair, the one whose ache never quite dulls. Sure, players can go on to find love in other places — the Opens, a PGA Championship — but the pain of a loss at Augusta National doesn’t ever fully disappear.

Some of that is owed to familiarity. As the Open returns to Carnoustie this summer, Jean Van De Velde will field a flurry of calls to autopsy his 1999 collapse. But at least the Frenchman only has to relive his fiasco every decade or so when the rota returns to the scene of le horreur.

Fail at Augusta National and the ghosts will start whispering every year on the drive down Magnolia Lane.

Screen Shot 2018-10-30 at 12.07.54 PM
Curtis Strange found the water twice on the closing holes in the 1985 Masters at Augusta National.

Continue reading “The Agony of Augusta National”

What Golf Needs: A Generational Rivalry

Screen Shot 2018-10-30 at 11.45.15 AM
The once and future kings: Woods and Spieth.

The PGA Tour has hewed to a familiar script over the last few years, as a succession of recent high schoolers hoist trophies that almost weigh more than they do.

It’s a generation of fine players – these Justin Thomases, Jordan Spieths and Jon Rahms – and many of them seem destined for the Hall of Fame. But there’s a uniformity to their cohort, well-adjusted kids who are more likely to spend tournament nights downing kale smoothies at the gym than shots of bourbon at a saloon.

Which is fair enough. That Tour is long dead, as are most of the guys who lived it.

Continue reading “What Golf Needs: A Generational Rivalry”