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Long driver proclaims long drivers are the best athletes on earth

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Maurice Allen, basking in the afterglow of advancing to the semifinals, may have gotten out over his skis a bit with some remarks he made to the Golf Channel at the WLD’s Clash at the Canyon.

While the entirety of his remarks were downright inspirational, this sentiment is sure to raise some eyebrows. Speaking about his fellow long drivers, Allen said.

“Man, I’ll be 100 percent honest with you. These guys out here are absolutely the best athletes on earth.”

The best athletes on earth? While we love ourselves some long drive and acknowledge that long drivers are generally, supremely fit and doubtless great athletes, are they really the best on earth?

Hot takes ????

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Instead of getting mired down in debate, we’ll just point to this bit from a few years back on ESPN’s Page 2 (you know, back when Page 2 still existed).

They evaluated the difficult of a number of sports based on the criteria below. Now it doesn’t necessarily follow that the best athletes play the most difficult sports, but in looking at the criteria below, golf was 51st out 60 sports in in degree of difficulty.

ENDURANCE: The ability to continue to perform a skill or action for long periods of time. Example: Lance Armstrong

STRENGTH: The ability to produce force. Example: NFL linebackers.

POWER: The ability to produce strength in the shortest possible time. Example: Barry Bonds.

SPEED: The ability to move quickly. Example: Marion Jones, Maurice Green.
AGILITY: The ability to change direction quickly. Example: Derek Jeter, Mia Hamm.

FLEXIBILITY: The ability to stretch the joints across a large range of motion. Example: Gymnasts, divers.

NERVE: The ability to overcome fear. Example: High-board divers, race-car drivers, ski jumpers.

DURABILITY: The ability to withstand physical punishment over a long period of time. Example: NBA/NHL players.

HAND-EYE COORDINATION: The ability to react quickly to sensory perception. Example: A hitter reacting to a breaking pitch; a drag racer timing acceleration to the green light.

ANALYTIC APTITUDE: The ability to evaluate and react appropriately to strategic situations. Example: Joe Montana reading a defense; basketball point guard on a fast break.

Again, based on those criteria, golf was 51st, right above cheerleading and right below horseracing (in which the key participants are not even human beings). And in case you’re wondering, boxing, ice hockey, football, basketball, and wrestling were the top five. While you can make a case that long drivers are more “athletic” than golfers in general, few in the sports world will agree with Allen’s hot take.  

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11 Comments

11 Comments

  1. robin

    Jun 14, 2017 at 12:27 pm

    I boxed for five years, and have the CTE’s to prove it… You don’t play boxing it’s brutal, the training alone is brutal . You get up before 5am to do roadwork before the smog rises. Then you go work at a real job, and back to the gym at 2:00 .
    If it’s your day to spar, you usually come home with either a fat lips, black eye or your abs get hurt and even your hands take a beating hitting somebody’s skull, your inside your lips become black as coal
    On the day you don’t spar it’s like going through a mini day marine corp boot camp.
    Now making weight, that just about as hard as the training .
    The day of the fight your drained from making weight you do anything to make weight you chew gum to spit fluid out take a shower to make weight shave your head anything goes. You just hope your opponent struggle to make weight to make things fair
    Now your in the ring ,you pray that you will be able to walk out of the ring on your own rather than a stretcher.
    Before I would touch gloves I take a good long look at the fighter in front of me to see if any steroid has crept into his body like Tiger Woods
    Now the fight starts you can hear the crowd come alive as the punch are flying. As you take a punch the crowed erupts just a reminder your fighting him in his house ,with his slow ass ring made for a puncher, not a fast ring for a boxer pucher like myself
    I ended up winning that last fight and it was about time to turn pro.
    I took a medical exam for my new manager and it was found that I had rheumatoid arthritis and that was the end of my career. I was now a professional boxer who never had a pro fight. I’m am one of the few boxer to walk away undefeated…
    I don’t think a long driver has to risk his life or permanent brain to get better in there so called sport just the training alone!
    What a joke of a statement i would say lol but real men don’t lol.

    • dapadre

      Jun 19, 2017 at 5:30 am

      Couldnt agree more. I boxed in my earlier years. I have played almost every sport seriously and I would agree boxing ( and MMA) are the best athletes HANDS DOWN. most ppl going get thru an 8 week training camp let alone compete.

  2. reqq

    Jun 12, 2017 at 8:57 am

    boxing, ice hockey, football, basketball, and wrestling were the top five.. Massive LOL.

    Physical strength and stamina on those above is a joke. Everyone can put in hours in the gym to have enough power, its not a hard thing to do. Lifting weights in the gym any dumbass can do, doesnt impress me at all. Endurance and stamina only counts in cycling, running, cross country skiing.

    So if we remove that from the top 5 its comes down to the same thing as golf. Coordination, feel, visualation, tactics and have strong/creative mind you have. Golf is easily the hardest one in terms of this, i would put soccer as equal. You can do vastly more things with a round ball then anything else, but its also harder, demands more with your coordination and feel.
    Now lets see what everyone forgets about golf. That is, everything you do counts towards the end result. All the other top 5 sports its not like this. You can miss the goal, you can do a bad pass and so forth, and most of the time you dont get penalized for it. Its like you have a molly on every teeshot, every approach, every missed put. Therefore the focus you need to have is alot higher then all of the top 5. You need to have that under 4-5 hours and 4 days. Its like a long maraton and you have sprint prizes on every mile. No rest.

  3. Jacked_Loft

    Jun 10, 2017 at 10:31 am

    Yep, right up there with darts, bowling and billards. Physically speaking of course.

    We play a game, not a sport.

  4. Orvill

    Jun 10, 2017 at 1:24 am

    Sport Ranking: — Golf is halfway between water skiing/table tennis and billiards/fishing…. and just edges out CHEERLEADING for 51st place. At least we know technology-driven golf clubs will make golf even easier… in a couple of years.

  5. Rev G

    Jun 9, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    Allen didn’t say that LD golfers play the most difficult sport. He said that they’re the best athletes. And while he’s obviousy exaggerating, the truth is, most of these guys are put together. And they have a unique blend of strength, flexibility and hand eye coordination that you don’t see in many athletes.

  6. #1 Ball Every Season... FOR A REASON!

    Jun 8, 2017 at 8:24 pm

    Golf was 51st out of 60 sports for degree of difficulty? OBVIOUSLY the panel was full of people who have NEVER played the game. Nearly all “athletes” who play the game will confess it is the most difficult game they have ever played.

    • rebfan73

      Jun 9, 2017 at 7:36 am

      Agreed…..

    • Pub

      Jun 9, 2017 at 5:50 pm

      Yes, a difficult “GAME” but not a sport, is what they are implying lol

    • Orvill

      Jun 10, 2017 at 1:28 am

      I think they are only assessing the golf swing which is ~1 second in duration. Since most use carts rather than walking, and the pros do walk but the caddy carries the clubs, you can’t really say much about that aspect of the game. As for putting, that’s just tapping and rolling the ball into a little hole. Not athletic when putting is ~42% of the game scoring.

      • Jack

        Jul 1, 2017 at 7:57 pm

        It’s just very little physical exertion compared to say basketball. You sweat because it’s hot out not because you took a swing. You do have to be accurate in different conditions which other sports don’t have in static form, but there are real time defenders making your life difficult. It’s hard and takes a lot more practice to be able to play at all, but that’s just a higher barrier to entry.

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WATCH: PGA Tour players play hole blindfolded and it’s hilarious/amazing

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As part of a Srixon campaign, four PGA Tour players recently participated in a three-hole challenge, with each hole being a different game; hole No. 1 was blindfolded, hole No. 2 was costumes and distractions, and hole No. 3 was alternate shot with a baseball bat. The teams were Smylie Kaufman and Sam Ryder against Shane Lowry and Grayson Murray.

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Think you had a bad weekend on the course? At least you didn’t do this

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We hope this golfer didn’t take the ultra-premium golf equipment plunge before sending his clubs to a watery grave. Either way, this was an expensive (and strangely calm) reaction to a bad round.

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19th Hole

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With four tweets since July 21st, Tiger Woods is exposing himself on social media in a way we haven’t seen.

And with his latest tweet, he’s…exposing himself in a way we haven’t seen.

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Nothing like it, indeed.

He’s lucky to have escaped with his life after battling that horrifying crustacean. Spiny lobsters, apparently, don’t have claws, but somehow that doesn’t make them any less terrifying, as they look poised to impale you and carry you off to their reefy lairs.

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All of this is good to see. It was two months ago that Woods entered rehab following his now-infamous Memorial Day arrest for impaired driving.

What this portends for his future on the golf course is unclear, but you’d assume the 14-time major champion is feeling pretty good if he’s free diving after monsters of the deep.

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