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Opinion & Analysis

The 10 best golf commercials of 2013

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This year’s PGA Tour season came to an end last weekend at the Tour Championship, which got me to thinking about what an incredible year of golf it has been.

The highlights from 2013 include: Tiger v. Sergio at The Players, Adam Scott’s breakthrough win at Augusta, the anchored-putter ban, Mickelson’s runner-up finish at a U.S. Open (again) followed by redemption at Muirfield, and a Hogan-esque ball striking showcase from Jason Dufner at Oak Hill.

But do you know what was really off the charts in 2013? Golf commercials.

This year produced better golf commercials than any year in recent memory. The commercials were so good, in fact, that I think it’s necessary to recap the 10 absolute best golf commercials aired this season.

To clarify what I mean by the “best commercials” I ask the simple question: How effectively does the advertisement express itself? Whether their goal was to evoke laughter, chills or simply make you want to buy their product, these commercials exhibited the highest caliber of production value and entertainment:

No. 10 — Bridgestone: “Pro-Shop/Assistant Manager”

[youtube id=”xVxy_AeL57o” width=”620″ height=”360″]

There were three of these throughout the golf season, all of which featured one of the best casts of any on this list. But I thought this episode was best.

FAVORITE PART: A short, chubby Trevino emerging from the crowd and telling the pretty woman: “I’ll tell you about compression.”

No. 9 (and 8) — MasterCard: “Feeling like a pro”

[youtube id=”a9JAF8MxGbY” width=”620″ height=”360″]
[youtube id=”pS4rJ1TN4QM” width=”620″ height=”360″]

Hats off G-Mac, Ian, Sneds and Mr. Watson here. Yes, they’re only lip-synching in the second commercial, but that makes it fun.

FAVORITE PART: “That’s the guy. SNEEEE-DUH-KER!!”

No. 7 — Footjoy: “The Mark of Player”

[youtube id=”JN_NlaunQ1o” width=”620″ height=”360″]

No jokes, tricks or surprises here, but FootJoy’s “Mark of a Player” spot succeeds with a pump-you-up musical score and a simple message: players play our stuff.

FAVORITE PART: Webb (presumably) splitting the fairway with a serious game face.

No. 6 — PGA Tour: “Born for This” (FedEx Cup Playoffs)

[youtube id=”ThLpym0D1QI” width=”620″ height=”360″]

This is the more bada** (and thus more rewatchable) version of its predecessor. The pause during each player’s two sentence quotes is so effective.

FAVORITE PART: The music. This song makes me want to video myself during a round with quotes of my own. Example: After a skied drive, I once yelled fore… to alert myself.

No. 5 — ESPN: Rickie Fowler’s SportsCenter Commercial

[youtube id=”UKk0z-5M9c4″ width=”620″ height=”360″]

Rickie Fowler is quickly becoming one of my favorite golfers. He’s cool, great with the fans and, apparently, can even poke fun at himself.

FAVORITE PART: Rickie spitting out the coffee.

No. 4 — Nike: “No Cup is Safe”

[youtube id=”2NCDYjHtEcU” width=”620″ height=”360″]

Nike did not waste much time from the time it signed Rory to featuring him in a pretty awesome advertisement. In a sort of Jordan/Bird shot for shot type contest, El Tigre and McIlory trade barbs and trick shots in a funny display of showmanship. If only Rory could have been so confident on the course this year.

FAVORITE PART: Tiger remarking to Rory: “Dude, is that your real hair?”

No. 3 — EA Sports Tiger Woods 2013: “The Rumble”

[youtube id=”8cFKBM5adMo” width=”620″ height=”360″]

Tiger teams up with The King in this very well done ad which features two golfing legends fighting off a group of would-be trophy thieves. Yes, it oversells it a bit at the end with Trevino’s (still nonetheless funny) cameo, but it is very well done.

FAVORITE PART: “Omaha spread?” “That’s what I was thinking.” Side note: how convincing is Tiger in this?

No. 2 — Avis: “The Professionals”

[youtube id=”gBGBxAUUDwk” width=”620″ height=”360″]

This rivals the Rickie Fowler commercial for the “most genuine laughter induced” when I first saw it. The music is funny (which helps Steve morph from a man into a beast), as was Stricker getting dusted by an old couple in a beat up old sedan.

FAVORITE PART: Stricker kills it by calmly stating “I’m a savage” at the end.

No. 1 –Dicks Sporting Goods: “Swing your Swing”

[youtube id=”MkX6xQM_QE8″ width=”620″ height=”360″]

This Dick’s Sport Goods commercial is just so well made and, let’s face it, applicable to many of us who probably every once in a while need to chill out on the hyper technical stuff and just go out there and (like Arnie) rip it. I particularly love the cook swinging the spatula while on the job, which we can all relate to.

FAVORITE PART: Arnold walking the walk by showing us his violent, jerky, unique — and awesome — swing.

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Lawyer, Bachelor and Golf Nut. John also writes for his and his sister's Italian culinary and lifestyle blog at www.johnandelana.com, maintains an honest GHIN handicap, and is from New Jersey; all of which he is proud of.

28 Comments

28 Comments

  1. Alex

    Oct 19, 2013 at 5:17 pm

    the fedex commercial with the metal band was by far the best golf commercial of 2013.

  2. KyDerby

    Oct 18, 2013 at 9:46 am

    The best commercial from years ago was a spoof of Tiger Woods. Tiger had done his black and white “I am Tiger Woods” for Nike. I believe it was Lamkin grips that did one (in black and white) showing 4 duffers slicing and hooking their shots into the woods. Then they would show a close up of their face (like the Tiger commercial) and say “I’m in the Woods”. It only aired a few times and have to assume the Tiger or Nike Machine strong-armed someone to drop it. Would love to see it again.

  3. Ted B. (Charging Rhino)

    Oct 17, 2013 at 4:07 pm

    I like the “Swing Your Swing” ad best as it’s also a PSA with Mr. Palmer admonishing a basic truth not to be lost.

  4. Josh

    Sep 27, 2013 at 9:58 am

    Great list. The Titleist commercial where it shows the players behind the ball visualizing the shot. You actually see the shot take off as they envision what they intend to do with the ball. I thought that was a great commercial.

    • Andrew

      Sep 27, 2013 at 5:14 pm

      That was a good one, had forgotten about it.

  5. Andrew

    Sep 26, 2013 at 3:16 pm

    Great job! Stricker kills me with “I’m a savage” ROFL!

    The Visa “feeling like a pro’ commercials equally good too.

    • breakn70

      Oct 19, 2013 at 12:48 pm

      The “Savage” is #1. Not even close.

  6. LT

    Sep 26, 2013 at 12:21 pm

    That Rumble commercial is pretty awful. Dunno why anybody like that, or the game. The game has such awful graphics and movements still.

    • John

      Sep 26, 2013 at 2:16 pm

      I never played the game. I will take your word for it.

  7. John

    Sep 26, 2013 at 10:55 am

    The Fed Ex Office Ones came awfully close, esp the one with the old guy who has the massive hand… Rory and the Robot, also deserves honorable mention (although if you look closely, he does not make the last shot).

    Golf is a Sport was a dud in my opinion. I didn’t buy into it. Just my opinion.

    Thank you for the comments.

    • LT

      Sep 26, 2013 at 12:17 pm

      You didn’t like any of the PING commercials with Bubba and Hunter? lol

      • John

        Sep 26, 2013 at 2:02 pm

        Ha – LT – I sense sarcasm? Those commercials did not do it for me.

  8. yomomma

    Sep 25, 2013 at 1:23 pm

    I think the milk has gone bad

    • CW

      Sep 25, 2013 at 8:02 pm

      This isnt orange.

      I think that Fowler commercial is hilarious!!!

  9. Mike

    Sep 24, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    Very disappointed that TW 14 “Golf is a sport” didn’t make the cut. It was a very good commercial, much better than “feeling like a pro”. Anyway, at least WRX got #1 right. Luv Arnie. “Swing your swing” is arguably the best golf commercial ever made. 60 seconds of pure inspiration that hits the soul. Message so powerful and personal it transcends race, class and gender. Best of all…timeless.

  10. Rich

    Sep 24, 2013 at 10:31 pm

    I hate to say this but how did the mark stefenhaggen commerical not get in? that commericial doesn’t have actual golf in it but it’s hilarious.

    • John

      Sep 26, 2013 at 3:32 pm

      Rich – Agreed. Very good and came close to getting in; if i made an honorable mention list, it would be on it.

  11. Mike

    Sep 24, 2013 at 9:43 pm

    I think Rory vs. Robot is the best of all. Hilarious.

    • Mike

      Sep 24, 2013 at 9:49 pm

      Dicks Sporting Goods ‘Nike VRS Covert’ Tiger Woods is hilarious as well.

      • Andrew

        Sep 26, 2013 at 3:17 pm

        I really thought the Rory vs. Robot commercial was kind of meh……..

        • John

          Sep 26, 2013 at 3:33 pm

          He doesn’t even make the last shot (the elevated washing machine)!

          Still entertaining nonetheless.

  12. LL

    Sep 24, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Good choices.

    My personal fav is the USGA “While we’re young” ad with Arnie and Clint.

  13. JS

    Sep 24, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    As a Dick’s associate for the golf department, that commercial is actually a spot on representation of our customers.

    “Is this driver– that’s stamped VR_S Covert on the sole which hangs on the VR_S Covert fixture below its VR_S Covert sign– the VR_S Covert driver?”

    … Yes.

    • LT

      Sep 26, 2013 at 12:12 pm

      I LOVE that commercial. It’s such a true representation of the idiocy of shoppers in the retail world, I love it.

  14. RJ

    Sep 24, 2013 at 11:12 am

    How did the two Euro Tour commercials not make the cut? Paddy on the range and Rory vs the robot were both better than the Dicks commercial which sucks.

    • KF

      Sep 24, 2013 at 11:36 am

      Please tell us what you really think.

      • TravisLG

        Sep 25, 2013 at 12:57 pm

        I agree, Rory with the washing machine should be very near the top if not the top.

  15. JK

    Sep 24, 2013 at 10:55 am

    what about the fedex office ones?

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Opinion & Analysis

A Letter from the Editor: Big changes are happening at GolfWRX

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For those of you who don’t know who I am, my name is Andrew Tursky. I recently went from the right-hand-man of former GolfWRX Editor-in-Chief Zak Kozuchowski, to running the show here at GolfWRX as the Editor-in-Chief myself. In my new role, I’m going to help GolfWRX fulfill its fullest potential as the best golf website in existence, and that means making a number of immediate changes, all of which I’ll highlight below.

First, a look back. Over a decade ago, GolfWRX started as a small community golf forum for golfers to discuss golf equipment, courses, instruction, rules, bargains, and everything else golf related. The forums continue to grow everyday, and they’re stronger than ever with over 250,000 members who are the most knowledgable and passionate golfers on the planet. They also helped us determine the Best Driver of 2018. Additionally, sometime around 2011, Kozuchowski took GolfWRX.com from simply a community golf forum to a golf media powerhouse by adding a front page section of the website, equipped with ultra-professional editorial. He built a team of Featured Writers — consisting of some of the biggest names in the golf industry — to help produce content that readers love and need. Since 2013, I’ve been helping Zak run the site by writing/producing original content myself, and working with the Featured Writer team. Currently averaging over 1.8 million unique readers per month, GolfWRX has been doing just fine. But I believe so strongly in the GolfWRX brand that I don’t want to settle for “just fine.” I believe we have more to offer, and I want every golfer in the world to garner entertainment or knowledge from our website.

As such, and building upon the foundation that is GolfWRX.com and the forums, I’ve been empowered by the “powers that be” at GolfWRX — you know, the guys who cut paychecks — to grow and shape the best golf website on the Internet.

So what does that mean going forward? Well, that’s what I wanted to discuss.

Here at GolfWRX, we’ve always been great at telling stories through the written word and images, and we will continue to do so with our Featured Writers team and legion of golf writers who love and know the game of golf. But after taking over the editorial direction of the website, I also wanted to help give GolfWRX a voice and a face. There are so many amazing people in the world of golf, and I wanted to provide platforms for us to help them tell their stories… to provide our readers the chance to see how golf clubs are made, how courses are designed, why professionals play certain equipment, and so much more. I wanted to bring readers where they’ve never been and hear from the people they’ve never heard from. Here at GolfWRX, we have the opportunity to speak with amazing people and play golf at amazing courses, and it’s about time the GolfWRX readers got to enjoy those experiences with us.

Therefore, we’re implementing our own original video and radio initiatives.

On the video-end of the spectrum, GolfWRX has recently hired Johnny Wunder full-time to the GolfWRX Staff. He’s a Hollywood producer (check out his new film Josie, starring Sophie Turner from Game of Thrones, that was recently in select theaters across the country!) and is also the new Director of Original Content at GolfWRX. If you’ve enjoyed the Bob Parsons interview, Paige interview, PXG Gen2 Editor’s Journal, or how PXG irons get built, you have Mr. Wunder to thank. Also coming soon are experiences with Mike Taylor at Artisan Golf, David Edel, Bert Lamar of Iliac Golf, the Criquet Golf team in Austin, a short game series with Gabe Hjertstedt, a new fashion series and much more. We’re extremely excited to bring our own original content to the world, and help highlight the people in golf who we think deserve a platform. See the things you’ve never seen, go places you’ve never gone, and meet people you’ve never met; that’s what we want to do with our new GolfWRX original video content. We truly hope you enjoy it, and learn a lot from the content we produce.

We’ve also started three great podcasts — the “19th Hole with host Michael Williams,” “Two Guys Talkin’ Golf,” and “Gear Dive” — with plans to expand in the very near future. Check all of them out here on SoundCloud, or here on iTunes.

The 19th Hole is hosted by Michael Williams, who was the PGA Mediaperson of the Year in 2014 and is a longtime titan in both golf media and radio in general; he has produced and hosted shows on CBS Radio, Fox Sports Radio and Voice of America. Michael is a true professional, knowledgeable golfer, and knows how to conduct one heck of an interview. So far on the show, his guests have included Greg Norman, Bob Vokey, Rees Jones, Robert Trent Jones Jr., Scott Van Pelt, Byron Scott, Michael Breed, Louis Oosthuizen, Jim Nantz, Roger Cleveland, Mike Taylor, and many more.

Two Guys Talkin’ Golf (TG2), is hosted by equipment expert Brian Knudson and myself, a former Division I golfer and GolfWRX Editor. Together, we discuss all things golf, but mostly focus on golf equipment… and the occasional hot take. TG2 welcomes guests on the show as well, ranging from GolfWRX forum members to club builders to Tour professionals to caddies. If you’re hungry for more equipment knowledge and high-level golf conversation, TG2 is your type of podcast.

The third, and all-new podcast, is called “Gear Dive,” hosted by Johnny Wunder. What you can expect is a weekly podcast where Wunder interviews anyone who’s anyone “in the know” of golf equipment… and he’s going deep. To give you an idea, his first guest was legendary clubmaker Larry Bobka who made Tiger Woods’ old Titleist irons.

Also, as I discussed before, GolfWRX is great with telling stories via the written word. To make sure we continue to do so, we’ve hired Ben Alberstadt who’s been writing for GolfWRX for over 5 years now. He was previously a freelance journalist who worked with a variety of media and news outlets, and he now wears the GolfWRX hat full time. I cannot be more excited to have him aboard the ship because he’s a true, hard-working journalist and he’s great at telling a story in his own unique style. If you’ve read any of his stuff, you know what I mean.

And as for me, I promise to continue providing GolfWRX readers with the content they want and need to read/hear/see on a daily basis. It’s my duty to help our readers be the most knowledgable golfers and golf buyers, and be entertained while learning more about the sport we all love. I simply love GolfWRX and our readers/listeners/viewers, and I want you to have the best website of all time to visit every day… a website to be part of and proud of.

What do I ask from you GolfWRX readers? Your feedback! If we write a bad story, tell us why you think it’s bad. If we publish a video you like, tell us why in the comments or on social media. If you love the new podcast, tell us that you loved it and support by subscribing. (If you want all of our podcasts transcribed, we’re working on it!) We want to have the best website in the world, and we want to provide information to golfers in the way they want to consume it. We care deeply about your opinion. GolfWRX began as a forum community, and we will always be a community. Personally, I was a GolfWRX reader myself before ever writing for the site. So was Alberstadt and Williams and Knudson and Wunder. We love golf and we love GolfWRX. We want to see it thrive, and you, the readers, are a huge part of that success.

Anyway, thanks for taking the time to read this letter, and I hope you continue to be a GolfWRX reader and participant. And if you do, make sure to tell your golfing buddies how much you love the site… in real life or on social media. The more we grow, the better stories and podcasts and videos we can create. I love and appreciate the opportunity to be your GolfWRX Editor, and I won’t let you down!

 

Hit em between the tree line,

Andrew Tursky

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Opinion & Analysis

Fantasy Preview: 2018 Zurich Classic of New Orleans

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Just as in 2017, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans will once again provide a change in format for the players this week. Players will team up once more at TPC Louisiana for a combination of Best Ball (Rounds 1 and 3) and Alternate Shot (Rounds 2 and 4). Unfortunately, the change in format means that there is no DraftKings this week.

The course is long at over 7,400 yards, but it’s also very generous off the tee. TPC Louisiana offers the opportunity to go low, and players took advantage last year despite the inclement weather conditions. It took a Monday playoff to separate them, but eventually Cameron Smith and Jonas Blixt pipped Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown by making birdie on the fourth playoff hole to take the title after both teams had posted 27-under par in regulation.

Selected Tournament Odds (via Bet365)

  • Justin Rose/Henrik Stenson 7/1
  • Patrick Reed/Patrick Cantlay 12/1
  • Justin Thomas/Bud Cauley 14/1
  • Bubba Watson/Matt Kuchar 14/1
  • Jordan Spieth/Ryan Palmer 14/1
  • Jon Rahm/Wesley Bryan 16/1
  • Rafa Cabrera Bello/Sergio Garcia 22/1

For the first time, Bubba Watson and Matt Kuchar (14/1) will team up for this event. Last year, Watson played alongside J.B Holmes. The two performed well, finishing in a tie for fifth place. TPC Louisiana has been a course that has suited Watson’s game over the years, his prodigious length being a significant factor. Along with his T-5 in 2017, Watson has a victory and three other top-20 finishes at the course when the event was an individual stroke-play tournament.

While Watson can be feast or famine at times, Kuchar is Mr. Consistent. He hasn’t missed a cut in over a year, and he has been a top-10 machine over the past few years on the PGA Tour. Despite this, Kuchar hasn’t been able to convert many of his top-10 finishes into wins, but playing alongside Watson this week — who has already notched two victories in 2018 — may help his cause. Over their last 24 rounds, Watson ranks third for Strokes Gained-Off the Tee and eighth in Strokes Gained Total. Over the same period, Kuchar has been predictably consistent, ranking in the top third in the field in every major Strokes Gained category. It’s an intriguing partnership, with Watson’s explosiveness combined with Kuchar’s consistency, and it’s a cocktail that should prove to be a formidable force at TPC Louisiana.

Two men with the hot hand coming into this event are fellow Americans, Jimmy Walker and Sean O’Hair (25/1). Last week at the Valero Texas Open both men excelled, posting the highest finishes of their year thus far. Walker finished solo 4th, while O’Hair grabbed a T-2. It’s the pairs first time playing TPC Louisiana together, but Walker has some good course form to lean on. Back in 2012 and 2013, he posted back-to-back top-20 finishes, which shows that TPC Louisiana is a course that fits his game. Accuracy off the tee has never been Walker’s strength, but the generous fairways may be one of the reasons that he has performed well at this course.

O’Hair has been in good form as of late. The Texan has three top-15 finishes in his last six events, and last week he recorded his highest Strokes Gained Total at an event in years. Walker also seems to have turned a corner with his game. Along with his excellent performance last week, he managed a top-20 finish at the Masters, and his Strokes Gained-Total at the Valero was his highest since his 2016 PGA Championship victory. With both men coming off their best performances in a long time, they should be confident. The duo looks to be a decent value to mount a challenge this week.

Last year’s runners-up Kevin Kisner and Scott Brown (40/1) are hard to ignore at their price this week. Brown has struggled mightily for form in 2018, missing six cuts out of 11 events played so far this year, but the prospect of playing alongside Kisner may be the boost that Brown’s 2018 is needing.

Kisner’s form has been strong as of late. He backed up his runner-up finish at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play with a T-28 at Augusta before grabbing a T-7 at the RBC Heritage. At Harbour Town, Kisner’s iron play was especially sharp, with his Strokes Gained-Approaching the Greens total being the highest since the Memorial last year. Despite Brown’s slump, in a highly tricky format to predict, the pair showed enough chemistry last year and an ability to excel in the format, which is enough for me to consider their price a little undervalued this week.

Recommended Plays

  • Bubba Watson/Matt Kuchar 14/1
  • Jimmy Walker/Sean O’Hair 25/1
  • Kevin Kisner/Scott Brown 40/1
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Podcasts

Gear Dive: Legendary club builder Larry Bobka speaks on Tiger’s old Titleist irons

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Legendary club builder Larry Bobka joins us in the first episode of our new podcast called “Gear Dive,” hosted by Johnny Wunder, GolfWRX’s Director of Original Content. Gear Dive is a deep look into the world of golf equipment, and Wunder will be interviewing the craftsman, the reps and the players behind the tools that make up the bags of the best golfers in the world.

Bobka, our first guest, is a former Tour rep and club builder involved in some of the most important clubs of the past 25 years. From his days at Wilson Golf working with legends such as Payne Stewart, Hale Irwin and Bernhard Langer, he transitioned into the Golden Age of Titleist/Acushnet building clubs for Tiger Woods, Davis Love, David Duval and Brad Faxon. He currently runs Argolf where he builds and fits handmade putters for Tour players and amateurs alike. He’s one of the Godfather’s of modern golf equipment.

Skip to 45:30 for the discussion about Tiger’s Titleist irons.

Check out our podcast on SoundCloud below, or click here to listen on iTunes!

What do you think of the new podcast? Leave your feedback in the comments below!

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