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Tiger says he played a Bridgestone golf ball for “a number of years”

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File Tiger Woods confirming a long-time industry rumor under things you didn’t expect to happen at the beginning of 2017.

In what could mostly be described as a State of the Union, Tiger Woods posted a 1,500-word blog post to his website on Thursday where he discussed a wide range of topics, including battling the flu over Thanksgiving, playing golf with Donald Trump, his performance at the Hero World Challenge, golf course design philosophy, and even his take on injuries in the NFL.

Read the post in its entirety here.

But for GolfWRXers, the most interesting insights came from his discussions about equipment.

Along with saying he’s still tinkering with “ball-wood” combinations — he played a TaylorMade M2 driver and TaylorMade M1 fairway woods at the Hero — Woods also implied that he used to play a Nike golf ball that was made by Bridgestone.

“What people don’t realize is that Bridgestone made the Nike golf ball for a number of years,” Woods said. “It’s a great ball and making the switch wasn’t that hard.”

As the face of Nike golf for years, this confirms the hunches that those in the know in the golf industry (here’s a forum thread from 2008 discussing the topic) had about Nike golf balls; at least during the company’s early days in the golf ball market. This certainly could explain Woods’ new golf ball deal with Bridgestone, and his decision to put the B330S golf ball into play for his return to competitive golf.

Of course, Nike isn’t the first golf equipment company to outsource the production of golf balls. But it’s interesting that Woods chose to publicize that information.

Woods has also confirmed that he’ll be playing in the Farmers Insurance Open, the Honda Classic, the Genesis Open and the Dubai Desert Classic, and we’ll be closely following his equipment changes throughout the season.

Related: Tiger Woods WITB 2017

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He played on the Hawaii Pacific University Men's Golf team and earned a Masters degree in Communications. He also played college golf at Rutgers University, where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism.

41 Comments

41 Comments

  1. David Hammond

    May 8, 2019 at 1:52 pm

    NIKE (or other major OEM, insert name here) designs golf gear.
    A factory, usually not in the USA, makes all or parts.
    NIKE literally MAKES nothing nada never. They are a promotional management firm only. If not for a Tiger-level player they probably would never have entered golf gear because it is a tough market to pierce. That is proven by their exit.
    Infidelity is not linked to golf gear.

  2. JR

    Jan 25, 2017 at 2:03 pm

    So Tiger “played a Bridgestone ball for a number of years”? No wonder he’s off his game. I usually only play the same ball for a couple of rounds.

  3. Rich Douglas

    Jan 8, 2017 at 9:56 am

    Here’s a crazy idea: play the equipment that is best for you regardless of celebrity endorsement. If a player influences you away from what’s best for you then you’re more interested in identity over playing your best golf.

  4. Chuck

    Jan 7, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    I don’t think it is true for Tiger to say that he’s been playing Bridgestone balls “for years,” any more than it was true for Tiger to say that all of his Nike equipment was chosen by him because it was the best, and he could play anything he wanted if it performed for him.

    In a matter of weeks after being relieved of a contractual duty to promote Nike equipment, he’s gone back to his old Cameron putter and 2016 TM M-series woods. Tiger had an all-Nike bag, because that is what he was paid for.

    If a golf ball is designed and formulated by Rock Iishi, working for Nike, and gets manufactured under a contract with Bridgestone, and is otherwise unlike any other marketed Bridgestone ball, it’s cute (and clever, in a Tiger Woods-deceptive sort of way) but it’s not a Bridgestone ball.

    • St

      Jan 7, 2017 at 6:28 pm

      But that’s not what he’s saying. So why don’t u have a nice cup of STFU

      • Chuck

        Jan 8, 2017 at 1:06 am

        To be precise, THIS is what Tiger’s blog post stated:

        “I’m still testing clubs and trying to find the best ball-wood combo. What people don’t realize is that Bridgestone made the Nike golf ball for a number of years. It’s a great ball and making the switch wasn’t that hard. I’m really excited to join the Bridgestone team. For now, I’ll probably stick with some of my old Nike equipment, and use my Scotty Cameron putter. I’m also proud to be working with Monster and look forward to the things we’ll do together.”

        Okay. So “for a number of years,” Bridgestone manufactured the Nike golf ball. Of course they did. Rock Ishii came to Nike directly from Bridgestone. Nike was starting from zero in golf ball manufacture. I don’t doubt — never doubted — the truth of that.

        But then there is all of the talk about very, very special balls formulated specifically for Tiger by Nike/Ishii for basically all of the time since the Nike One came into being.

        http://www.si.com/vault/2005/03/28/8256146/#

        So…
        a) Was Tiger bs-ing for the sake of his big sponsor, when he was claiming that he could play any equipment he wanted, but Nike’s was all the best? And that for the last 15 years or so, his Nike golf balls have been carefully designed and tuned by Rock Ishii and the Nike staff? Or;

        b) Is Tiger bs-ing for the sake of his new big sponsor, when he claims that his Nike golf balls were really Bridgestones? Or;

        c) Is Tiger perpetually clever with his words, always helping out his sponsor of the moment and saying whatever he can get away with, with plausible deniability, to say something that sounds remarkably clever and informative in favor of the sponsor of the moment? Or;

        d) All of the above.

  5. 1badbadger

    Jan 6, 2017 at 11:55 pm

    He’s not a fraud and didn’t lie about what golf ball he was playing…Nike outsources all their products. They don’t make anything…not even athletic shoes. They are a marketing company. They don’t own any production facilities. They did have a team that DESIGNED their golf balls, and Bridgestone simply MANUFACTURED them to their specs. Nike balls, just made in Bridgestone’s plant.

  6. Chunkiebuck

    Jan 6, 2017 at 10:40 pm

    I’ll alert the media.

  7. TIm

    Jan 6, 2017 at 8:40 pm

    Gee Maxfli, Dunlop Slazanger and some Wilson balls were all made in the same plant back in the 80’s 90’s….right here in the good old USA. John Daly played a Dunlop ball made in South Carolina for awhile and won with it in San Diego. Locco Pro urethane cover ball..then Addis (Taylormade) took over the plant and Dunlop and Slazanger sold off their names (DICK’S SPORTING GOODS) for use in USA. They kept Maxfli a short time then sold that off to Dick’s.

  8. Swizzle

    Jan 6, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    Everyone wants to sound like the know more than the last guy. Like many of you I was aware of all this in early 2000’s. Seems it was a slow day at work for a lot of you!

  9. mikee

    Jan 6, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Just like Nike ice hockey skates…..Sergei Federov (at that time with the Detroit Redwings) was the “face” of Nike skates. He was using “rebranded” Bauer skates.

  10. Dave R

    Jan 6, 2017 at 2:02 pm

    Folks it’s a golf ball that’s all. Relax move on .

  11. MrPoopoo

    Jan 6, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    Speaking of golf balls… is anybody on Tour rocking the Kirkland Signature balls? That would be hilarious.

    • Bandrz

      Jan 6, 2017 at 4:04 pm

      Yes, but they are known as Taylormade balls on Tour. Same factory.

      • TIm

        Jan 6, 2017 at 8:28 pm

        disagree, to the point it would not be the Taylormade tour balls they are made in South Carolina. Maybe the lower end Taylormade balls…

  12. birdie

    Jan 6, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    how or why? just because a ball is made by bridgestone doesn’t mean they performed exactly the same. there were intended differences.

    many companies design, engineer, and create product and use a competitor to actually manufacturer it. this isn’t new.

  13. Tazz2293

    Jan 6, 2017 at 9:58 am

    All the woods worshipers who played Nike were lied to by woods and got hornswoggled by Nike.

    • Dj

      Jan 6, 2017 at 11:26 am

      All of those “woods worshippers” people were also playing Bridgestone balls. Everyone here knows that Bridgestone made Nike’s initial balls until they started with RZN

  14. Bert

    Jan 6, 2017 at 9:12 am

    I think what is being said is players deceive golf fans with their endorsements. Endorsing a product knowingly it is really something else is deception in the name of making money. When a golfer takes such action they are not creditable. So take the head-cover off and let the golf fan, who’s really supporting you, know the equipment you actually play.

    • Orangeology

      Jan 6, 2017 at 10:35 am

      only if that deception—you called—was for a specific player’s equipment ‘only’. if the entire brand had a manufacturing deal with another company—where’s the case in between Nike & Bridgestone in the earlier days—then it’s different story, we guess?

    • Dj

      Jan 6, 2017 at 11:29 am

      The golf fans who bought Nike balls prior to their RZN tech were also buying Bridgestone manufactured balls. It wasn’t just tiger. Bridgestone manufactured all of Nike’s balls at retail, not just tigers

  15. Wayne J Bosley

    Jan 5, 2017 at 8:14 pm

    They were not the only company making balls for Nike and had stopped doing so a few years ago ,,,, I feel sorry for the other two companies that were doing a good job supplying in recent years that have had their Nike business evaporate without much notice.

    • Shallowface

      Jan 6, 2017 at 9:05 am

      Who were those “other two companies?”

    • 1badbadger

      Jan 7, 2017 at 12:01 am

      Initially, Bridgestone made all of Nike’s golf ball models. After a few years, they did start using other companies as well, but Bridgestone continued to manufacture some of their models.

  16. cgasucks

    Jan 5, 2017 at 6:27 pm

    Earl was no saint either. He cheated on Tilda and there are rumors of Earl bringing in hookers to Tiger’s childhood home in California.

    • eric

      Jan 6, 2017 at 9:40 am

      i love the internet. a comment thread about a golf ball turns into claims about tiger’s dad and hookers.

      • Boobsy McKiss

        Jan 6, 2017 at 12:16 pm

        Seriously. Some fools wait for any chance they can get to rip on tiger, probably trying in vein to subconsciously fill that empty void they have in their life. Like he’s the only professional golfer, athlete, or famous figure who ever cheated on their spouse. ROFL.

        • TIm

          Jan 6, 2017 at 8:32 pm

          Pretty simple this is a Golf site and Tiger Woods is the Best to ever play the game, not even close…so why not take shots at someone who plays the game you love better then you ever dreamed possible…

  17. Scott

    Jan 5, 2017 at 4:07 pm

    Makes sense. I have never liked either ball.

  18. LOL

    Jan 5, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Why are you so angry, did he bang your aunt, mom, sister?

  19. Phil

    Jan 5, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    When will Tiger admit that his “Nike” irons were made by Miura?

    • Barry

      Jan 5, 2017 at 4:39 pm

      Probably around the same time he puts a new set in the bag

    • R0B

      Jan 5, 2017 at 10:25 pm

      +1
      (you beat me to it)

    • Dj

      Jan 6, 2017 at 11:27 am

      Tigers Nike irons were never touched by Miura, genius

    • 1badbadger

      Jan 7, 2017 at 12:27 am

      In all fairness, none of the major OEMs own their own forging plant. Titleist, TaylorMade, Callaway, Bridgestone, Srixon, etc all use factories overseas to produce their forgings.

  20. Dj

    Jan 5, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    This has been confirmed numerous times by Nike golf themselves so not sure how it’s considered a rumor

    • Eddie

      Jan 5, 2017 at 4:41 pm

      I think it was pretty widely known back when Nike first got in the golf ball business back when Bridgestone’s golf stuff was called Precept.

    • cgasucks

      Jan 5, 2017 at 6:29 pm

      I knew that when I started playing golf in 2000. It is well known that Bridgestone made Nike balls for a long time.

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Equipment

Forum Thread of the Day: “New PXG putters”

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Today’s Forum Thread of the Day showcases an array of new PXG putters. The flat-sticks have got our members talking, with the new look and weighting options proving to be popular amongst WRXers.

For lots more photos, check out the full thread here.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • nova6868: “These new putters look so much better than their first line.”
  • keto: “My eyes a popping out. I could roll most of those confident I would put a decent stroke on them. I haven’t checked $$, I imagine they are $$$$$, but I sure like the weighting options.”
  • chip75: “Look so much cleaner without the weights visible.”

Entire Thread: “New PXG putters”

 

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Forum Thread of the Day: “New Mitsubishi AV shafts”

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“We are working on bringing 2nd Gen Tensei product to market – this is the first week of PGA Tour testing.

Be sure to stay tuned for more information towards the beginning of 2020!”

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • AdamStoutjesdyk: “I’m already a huge fan of the Pro White, I can’t wait to see how these look and perform in person!”
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Entire Thread: “New Mitsubishi AV shafts”

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Honma launches new XP-1 Series driver, fairway woods, and hybrids for 2020

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new 2020 Honma Driver

For 2020, Honma Golf is launching the all-new XP-1 line of clubs comprised of an entire family holistically designed to help players maximize forgiveness and get the most out of their games with one set. The new Honma XP-1 drivers, fairway woods, and hybrids, all the way to irons, is a new direction for the premium Japanese company that brings together ultimate craftsmanship with performance.

The highlight of the XP-1 line from Honma is the fact that they were designed from top to bottom to work as a comprehensive set of tool to achieve maximum performance. The technology in the metal woods flows from the driver to the hybrids with a seamless transition that creates consistency for feel and looks for the player.

Honma XP-1 driver

new 2020 Honma Driver

New 2020 Honma Golf Driver

Honma is known for its dedication to quality and craftsmanship, and every part of the XP-1 line was developed with the golfer in mind to both look appealing and perform to the highest standards. The XP-1 driver packs a lot of technology into a very classic looking club, and we’re here to take you under the hood—or in this case, the carbon fiber crown—to show you how it can help you hit better shots.

2020 Honma XP1 Driver toe

Honma XP-1 Driver Toe

It starts with a tour-inspired look from address, designed to inspire confidence for any level of golfer. Underneath ther gloss black crown, there is a lot of technology to generate faster ball speeds around the entire face and help get you dialed into the right setting. Speaking to the crown, it’s made from ET-40 fiber, making it one the lightest in golf. This weight savings helps engineers relocate an additional 15g of mass around the head towards the heel for increased MOI and greater ability to help players close the club face more easily.

Flip the driver upside down, and we have a lot more going on with the sole than initially meets the eye. Honma is introducing a new double slot in the sole for increased ball speed across a much larger area of the face. What starts off smaller in the middle increases in width and depth as it reaches towards the heel and the toe of the club. These slots, along with improved MOI, keep ball speeds up and misses closer to the intended target. The last part of the equation: How these wider parts of the face, flex around the more narrow middle to also increase gear effect—think of it like one more way to help the bigger misses stay in play.

New 2020 Honma Driver XP1

2020 Honma XP-1 Driver sole and shaft adjustment connection

The last piece key piece of technology in the XP-1 driver head is exclusive to Honma—the adjustable hosel that changes face angle, lie, and loft, but never changes the orientation of the shaft. This gives the player or fitter the ability to truly dial in hosel settings without having to worry about the constantly changing of the grip orientation. This, according to Honma, also keeps the shaft spine in the ideal location for consistent performance.

Honma 2020 xp1 driver shaft

Honmq Vizard 43g shaft

Honma is the only manufacturer that produces its own shafts from start to finish in house, and the XP-1 is getting its own custom-designed and built shafts to complement the technology built into the heads. The Vizard stock shafts are engineered to produce a smooth feel that promotes faster clubhead speeds, yet also remain extremely stable. For the XP-1 driver, the matching Vizard shafts will come in weights of 43g, 53g, and 63g, and flexes from senior to stiff.

Honma XP-1 fairway woods

The XP-1 woods bring the same level of craftsmanship and technology as the drivers to a club designed for use both off the tee and off the fairway.

New for 2020 Honma XP-1 Fairway wood

New for 2020 Honma XP-1 Fairway wood

The Honma XP-1 3-wood uses the same weight-saving ET-40 crown to position a large amount of the club’s total mass low and on the sole for greatest possible launch and spin consistency. The 3-wood is the second-lightest club in most players bags by total weight and head mass, and unless you are carrying a second driver, it’s also the second-largest by volume. By using the carbon crown designers get everything they can from the other technologies including the double slot sole and thin fast face without having to sacrifice the overall design of not just the head but the entire club.

New Honma XP-1 3 wood crown fairway

Honma XP-1 3 wood crown

The XP-1 fairways also include a 5  7-woods, but with the smaller volume of the heads and the reduced crown size, using a carbon crown would actually increase the mass higher in the head, so they instead utilize an extremely thin high strength steel crown.

New Honma 53g Vizard Fairway Shaft XP1

Honma 53g Vizard Fairway Shaft

All of the fairway woods come with the same made-in-Sakata, Japan 43g, 53g, and 63g Vizard shaft options as the driver to help every player get the most of each club in the set. If might seem like a minor detail, but being able to design an entire club in house from head to grip is a big advantage for Honma versus other OEMs. This holistic approach to designing an entire club/set is a big benefit to the consumer looking to get the most out of each club in their bag and not feel like something may be working against them.

Honma XP-1 hybrid

With the Honma XP-1 hybrid, forgiveness and flow from the fairway woods is the number one consideration for these club. The flow includes a wood-like shape that keeps the club shallow and the center of gravity as low as possible for higher launch and approach shots that fly higher and land softer. Considering the target player for the XP-1 line, the wood-like shape is also very confidence-inspiring.

New 2020 Honma XP1 hybrid

Honma XP-1 Hybrid

Honma continues the design philosophy of keeping the XP-1 both forgiving and fast by utilizing the double slot sole all the way into these hybrids that go from a 19-degree 3-iron replacement to a 25-degree 5-iron replacement.

Honma XP-1 specs & availability

The Honma XP-1 driver, fairway wood, and hybrids will be available starting in October.

New 2020 Honma XP1 Driver fairway hybrid specs

Honma XP-1 line club specs

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