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Morning 9: Na way he wasn’t winning | Rahmbo: Spanish Open Part II | Bryson bulking up?

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By Ben Alberstadt
Email me at ben.alberstadt@golfwrx.com and find me at @benalberstadt on Instagram and (reluctantly) now at benGolfWRX on Twitter.

October 7, 2019

Good Monday morning, golf fans.
1. Na way was he letting this one get away
Golfweek’s Adam Woodard with the black letter of Kevin Na’s victory…”Na won the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open, the fourth event of the 2019-20 PGA Tour schedule, on Sunday at 23 under par after a two-hole playoff against Cantlay.”
  • “In an emotional post-round interview with Golf Channel, Na gave an impassioned answer in Korean, where he said he was very happy and confident after the win and thanked everyone in Korea for “believing in him,” according to a quick Google translation.”

Full piece.

  • Really, this was a win about a guy with grit and swagger capping an often sloppy final round by going to a well that should have been dry and filling his cup-and walking a playoff-extending putt in with the stones of Tiger at Valhalla. Far from the fragile psyche and cruel caricature of the recent past, this version of Kevin Na is a confident winner.
2. Open de Rahma 
The details on Jon Rahm’s repeat Spanish Open W via Europeantour.com, which saw him become the fastest Spaniard ever to 5 wins, besting the maestro, Seve Ballesteros…”The World Number Five carded a closing 66 that saw him finish at 22 under and enter the record books with a fifth European Tour victory in just his 39th start.”
  • “Rafa Cabrera Bello was his nearest challenger as Spaniards dominated the leaderboard, with World Number 1,413 Samuel Del Val at 15 under in just his fifth European Tour event.”
  • “The victory moved Rahm to the top of the Race to Dubai Rankings Presented by Rolex as he looks to become the first Spaniard to win the Harry Vardon Trophy since the late, great Seve Ballesteros in 1991.”

Full piece.

3. An unexpected day for Knight 
AP report on the action on LPGA Tour...”Cheyenne Knight struggled so much her rookie season that she made the cut in only half of her tournaments and figured she was headed back to the LPGA Tour qualifying series. One week changed everything.”
“In the only LPGA event in her home state of Texas, in what she thought would be her last tournament of the year, Knight played bogey-free Sunday and closed with a 5-under 66 for a two-shot victory in the Volunteers of America Classic.”
4. Phil’s pleased
Golf Channel’s Nick Menta...”Mickelson closed Sunday with a 4-under par 67, which is about even par this week at TPC Summerlin.”
  • “Phil entered the weekend just three off the 36-hole pace but tumbled down the leaderboard Saturday with a third-round 74 on a day when the scoring average was 67.75.”
  • “Asked to sum up his play, Mickelson said: “I came out and had two good rounds out of four. I didn’t obviously compete, but the road back to playing well is a process, and today or this week was a good start on that process, and I’m looking forward to going to Korea and continuing improving. I identified a few areas to continue to work on, but there were some areas of strength as well.”
5. Bryson bulking?
This is…not totally surprising… Per Ben Everill at PGATour.com, Bryson DeChambeau is taking the next month to seriously get his swole on.
In terms of the specifics, well, who the hell knows. Here’s a bit of Bryson per Ben.
  • “I’m going to come back next year and look like a different person. You’re going to see some pretty big changes in my body, which is going to be a good thing. Going to be hitting it a lot further,” DeChambeau said after finishing his title defense at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open with an 8-under 63.
  • “Bigger. Way stronger. Just stronger in general. I am going to look probably a lot bigger, but it’s going to be a fun month and a half off. I have never been able to do this, and I’m going to go do things that are going to be a lot of fun.”
  • And…”We make sure the neurological threshold is just as high as the mechanical threshold…”
  • “In layman’s terms, pretty much whatever muscle potentially you have, how big and the muscle spindles you have, you can recruit every single one of them to their full potential throughout the whole range and training the whole range of motion.”

Full piece.

6. Scott Herbert survives
Golfweek staff report…”Not only did Scott Hebert come from behind to win the 31st Senior PGA Professional Championship Sunday, he matched a Championship record for lowest 72-hole total with 16-under 270.”
“With rounds of 70-70-63-67 at the Omni Barton Creek Resort & Spa’s Fazio Foothills Course, Hebert finished four strokes ahead of Jerry Haas, Jeff Hart and Frank Bensel Jr. Hebert’s third-round 63 set a Championship record for lowest third round and tied for the best 18-hole score in Championship history.”
7. LPGA card drama 
Golfweek’s Beth Ann Nichols…”the last player to secure an LPGA card for 2020 didn’t even play at LPGA International.”
  • “Mind Muangkhumsakul got her pro-am time wrong on Wednesday and was forced to withdraw from the competition. She came into the finale 10th on the money list (the top 10 secure LPGA cards), $10,176 ahead of South Korea’s Min Seo Kwak.”
  • “According to a tour official, Muangkhumsakul thought the pro-am began at 9 a.m. and arrived at the course 20 minutes to the hour. With the 8 a.m. shotgun running late, play officially began at 8:17 a.m. Officials tried to get her out to the tee of her second hole in time (had she made it, Muangkhumsakul would’ve only been given a $500 fine). But she didn’t make that either and was forced to WD.”

Full piece.

8. Tee box demons
Mark Townsend at National Club Golfer...”This week in Spain Scott Gregory did likewise during the first round in Madrid. The 2016 Amateur champion, he beat Bob MacIntyre in the final at Royal Porthcawl, has endured an horrific season having come through Q School at the end of last year with just one made cut in 17 starts. His Challenge Tour efforts haven’t realised much better.”
  • “When we see ‘DISQ’ next to a player’s name it always catches the eye, sadly for Gregory it wasn’t a wrong scorecard, as he explained via Twitter.”
  • “I haven’t been DQ’d for anything sinister, it was more a withdrawal. Those closest to me know I’ve been battling some mental demons both off the tee and personally for a while now and today everything kind of fell apart. I ended up struggling to pull the trigger and seeing a shot off the tee, resulting in some quite large misses,” the 25-year-old said.
  • “Because of this my only option was to walk away, it’s not fair on my playing partners with the speed I was playing due to the issue. I’m never one to quit and this is the first and last time in my career it will happen. I want to thank you for all your support and I hope to come back stronger once I’ve got the help I need.”

Full piece.

9. A hole-in-one for Jimmy Buffett! 
Golfweek’s Adam Woodard…”The 72-year-old singer shared a photo on his Instagram page celebrating a hole-in-one, rocking a New Orleans Saints hat and playing a Titleist 2.”
“We unfortunately don’t know what club was used, nor the yardage, or even where Buffett was playing on Saturday. Or if he aced a hole in his backyard? What we do know is, Come Monday, Buffett will still be Havana Daydreamin’ about his ace”
The puns! See the photo here, Parrotheads.

 

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Morning 9: Latest memo from Tour to players | Phil’s post-Match perspective | Greg Norman’s regrettable take

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1. Latest “bubble” memo
Golf Channel’s Rex Hoggard details the most recent communique from Tour to its players…“In a memo sent to players on Wednesday, tournament director Michael Tothe outlined many of the protocols that will be required when play resumes on June 11 at Colonial including the four Fort Worth, Texas, hotels that will create the foundation of the circuit’s “bubble” for the week.”
  • “The core of the PGA Tour’s plan to return was always about testing, but it’s a fine line to walk. In two weeks, at the Charles Schwab Challenge, we’ll find out if it will be enough.”
  • “Players are allowed to stay in individual RVs or rental homes but they are being encouraged to assure the health and safety of their accommodations if they choose to stay outside the bubble.”
  • “Players were also informed where COVID-19 testing will occur when they arrive in Fort Worth as well as meal options at Colonial, which will be limited to grab-and-go lunches in order to follow safety protocols.”
2. Little John finishes second at Crooked Stick 
Kyle Neddenriep, Indianapolis Star…Daly II made that same walk on Wednesday, up the 18th fairway for the final round of the inaugural Dye Junior Golf Invitational at Crooked Stick.”
  • “I think a lot of guys have re-watched the 1991 PGA tournament,” Daly II said. “I watched it every night before the tournament. (Watching him) walk down the 18th with all of the fans everywhere was pretty cool. He started as the ninth alternate and didn’t expect to play. For him to win, it was a ridiculous story. He loves it.”
  • “Daly II put together a remarkable tournament in his own right, finishing a three-way tie for second place behind winner John Marshall Butler of Louisville, Kentucky. Daly II was 4 over for the two-day, 54-hole event, which featured 33 of the top high school boys players in the country and 33 of the same on the girls’ side.”
3. Phil open to wearing mic
Golf Channel’s Will Gray…”Speaking on the Dan Patrick Show, Mickelson admitted that he didn’t expect the same level of banter during a typical Tour event with a seven-figure prize on the line, but he’d nonetheless be willing to broadcast his inside-the-ropes dialogue.”
  • “I would be open to the idea because of how it’s being received, and some of the insight and so forth,” Mickelson said. “But you don’t have the play between individuals. I had a partner, and Tom and I could talk back and forth. And maybe you could get some of that with the caddie, but having a partner is much more intimate and you have much better conversation.”
4. …wants annual Match
AP report…”Phil Mickelson, fresh off the success of Sunday’s charity golf exhibition with Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning and Tom Brady, says he would like to see “The Match” become an annual event.”
  • “I think you could showcase guys like Steph Curry and Michael Jordan or Tony Romo and Patrick Mahomes, who are all good golfers, elite talents and have great personalities,” Mickelson told the Los Angeles Times in a column published Wednesday. “Those personalities are going to come out with this event. Or you could have someone who loves the game and is competitive but is really entertaining like Larry David and Bill Murray. I think that could shine.”
5. More audience info
Interesting stuff from Geoff Shackelford…“According to Showbuzzdaily.com, almost 1/3 of The Match 2’s audience was in the coveted 18-49 demo and the number was even better on on TruTV, also meaning there are people of any age group who know how to find TruTV”
  • “About 30% of The Match’s audience landed in the 18-49 demo despite the 44.5 average age of the participants…The numbers for TaylorMade Driving Relief with a foursome averaging 29.5 years”
  • “That’s 25% of the almighty buyers for a younger, supposedly more millennial-friendly group of golfers. And a grand total of (at least) 860,000 fewer viewers 18-49.  While not a huge difference in the percentage department, The Match did rout Driving Relief in overall audience and even took chipped away at NASCAR’s ratings.”

Full piece.

6. After a long layoff, how do the pros play?
Dylan Beirne, 15th Club for PGATour.com, examines the question…“As we might expect, there’s a clear relationship between performance and the number of weeks a player has been off. We can analyze how well players perform by comparing our estimate of their ability (how we would expect them to perform) to how they actually performed.”
  • “Generally, players taking small breaks of two weeks or less are marginally better than expected, while longer breaks result in an average drop in performance of between 0.1 and 0.2 strokes per round. For context, a drop of 0.2 strokes per round is about the gap between 100th- and 135th-ranked players in the world. It’s a significant change, but not enormous.”
  • “Additionally, the drop in performance after a 10-20 week gap is quite consistent across different levels of players. Top-50 players in the world are affected by a similar amount to those outside the top 50.”
7. A really bad take from Greg Norman
I mean, what else can you call it? A man who has a history of obtuseness and putting his fin in his mouth outdid himself with unfounded speculation about the Kobe Bryant helicopter crash in an interview with Michael Bamberger…“I asked Norman about the January helicopter crash in Los Angeles that killed all nine people aboard, Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, among them. I asked Norman if he had any insight, from his own experience as a helicopter pilot, and as an elite athlete who has flown often in helicopters as a passenger, into the tragedy.”
  • “Yes – yes,” he said. His voice was sober. “Probably pilot error and pressure from the back,” Norman said. Norman could imagine the legendary basketball player saying, “‘Get me through this; get me there. I’ve got to get my daughter to this game.’
  • …”My instructor and I had a saying, ‘If you can’t see through it don’t fly through it.’ If I was flying to Doral or Orlando or Naples and there was fog, we just put it down and waited it out.”
8. Sprint to the Cup
Ben Everill at PGATour.com…“The COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting cancellations and postponements of tournaments leaves just 11 eligible tournaments over a 10-week stretch for players to qualify for the Playoffs and a chance at the $15 million bonus that comes with the season-long FedExCup crown.”
  • “While the top 125 will not double as the cutoff for TOUR cards next season in this reduced schedule, it will remain the mark to get into THE NORTHERN TRUST, the first of three Playoffs events in the chase for the FedExCup.”
  • “Gone is the luxury of extended rest between starts for those sitting way back on the list, such as Koepka, who was just starting to find his feet again on a return from injury when the pandemic halted play in March.”

 

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Morning 9: Improving golf coverage | Oral history of TW’s “best shot” | Nichols: Charity matches were great…but why no women?

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1. Match-inspired innovations for improving golf coverage
Golf Digest’s Shane Ryan with a few thoughts…Mid-round interviews…There’s no really good reason beyond mild annoyance to the players that this couldn’t work, even in the current COVID-19 environment, provided that safe social distancing is practiced. In the major team sports, coaches are obliged to give interviews, and players will occasionally speak at halftime or between periods. There are no “coaches” in that same sense in golf, but the game happens at a slower pace, and a 60-second walking interview between holes is not too much to ask. I don’t think there’s a reasonable argument that it’s overly disruptive, especially if planned in advance.”
  • …”Mic’d up players and caddies…In exhibitions past, we’ve witnessed players with live microphones, but the purpose behind it is dreaded “banter,” which typically comes across as hollow, forced and not very funny. But if players and caddies wore mics during a round, producers could find riveting audio that captures natural conversation or impromptu strategy sessions. Phil serving as a mentor for Tom Brady was riveting and hopefully stokes our appetite for similar mid-round insight…”
2. An oral history of Tiger’s “best shot” 
Cameron Morfit for PGATour.com…(This is just the introduction to a fantastic piece that talks to Bob Weeks of TSN and Steve Williams, among others!)…”Had it slipped between Tiger Woods’ 6-iron and golf ball, one rogue grain could have sunk his hopes of winning the RBC Canadian Open in 2000, becoming the first since Lee Trevino in 1971 to win golf’s Triple Crown – the U.S., British, and Canadian Opens in the same year.”
  • “So was it the ultra-fine margin? The stakes? The absurdly improbable physics of the shot itself?”
  • “Yes. Yes. And yes. All of these things compelled Scott Verplank, among others, to call it “the greatest shot I’ve ever seen in my life,” Woods’ 218-yard masterstroke from the wet sand at the par-5 18th at Glen Abbey. Woods’ caddie Steve Williams would return to the bunker once the commotion had died down, still struggling to get his head around what he’d seen. Others have made the same pilgrimage and tried to visualize what Woods had, tried to feel what Woods felt, for this was magic.”
3. Thrive? Struggle? Survive? 
Golfweek’s Adam Schupak contemplates what’s ahead for the golf industry…”These are strange times living through a global pandemic. Suddenly, golf courses are packed in a way the industry hasn’t experienced since Tiger Woods was revolutionizing the game in the late 1990s and former PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem was predicting 50 million golfers by 2020.”
  • “Well, that didn’t happen, but golf has been given this new-found seal of approval highlighting its healthy aspects and its ability to provide safe recreation. As courses across the country re-open there is pent up demand among golfers to get out and play. Tee sheets are mostly filled and former golfers and those trying out the sport for the first time are emerging out of the woodwork desperate to be in the sunshine and doing something, anything that has been deemed “COVID OK.” There is renewed belief that golf can grab a bigger piece of the pie among recreational and entertainment options.”
4. Where were the women?
Golfweek’s Beth Ann Nichols wonders…How can there be downside to two Sundays of golf taking center stage and raising mega-money for COVID-19 relief?”
  • “Well, there is no a downside, but it could’ve been more. As LPGA player Mel Reid tweeted during the TaylorMade Driving Relief Challenge, the broadcasts could’ve represented all of golf.”
  • “They could’ve included women.”
  • “…It would’ve been great to see an LPGA player and her sponsorship partners get in on the action in a similar fashion.”
  • “The TaylorMade event could’ve been a mixed-team format. Maria Fassi and Paula Creamer are both in Florida. Some of TaylorMade’s female stars could’ve also called in during the broadcast as Jon Rahm did. Staffers who could’ve called in include Natalie Gulbis, Muni He and Charley Hull. Sung Hyun Park, who speaks limited English, was involved in a charity exhibition in South Korea with current No. 1 Jin Young Ko. Women’s golf frequently takes center stage in that part of the world.”
5. 80% of golf retail open
From the NGF Q…”The number of physical golf retail outlets that are back in business continues to increase – from off-course stores and specialty club-fitters to green grass pro shops.”
  • “Approximately 66% of golf course pro shops are open at facilities that are open to play, the equivalent of almost 9 million square feet, although some states and counties have limitations on the number of customers permitted at one time. That percentage is up from 36% at the start of the month, but is unchanged over the past week as pro shops in at least 10 states (including Michigan, New Jersey, Illinois and New York) have government mandates that say they must remain closed inside to customers.”
  • “Meanwhile, approximately 79% of off-course golf retail stores were open (in terms of total square footage) through May 25. This is up from 73% last week and 59% two weeks ago. In early April, only about 4% of the 6.5 million square feet of total off-course golf specialty space was open to in-store traffic. Roughly 81% of all off-course retail stores are now open to customers.”
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GolfWRX Classifieds Spotlight (05/27/20): Adams, Mizuno, Ping

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At GolfWRX, we love golf equipment plain and simple

We are a community of like-minded individuals that all experience and express our enjoyment for the game in many ways. It’s that sense of community that drives day-to-day interactions in the forums on topics that range from best driver to what marker you use to mark your ball, it even allows us to share another thing – the equipment itself.

One of the best ways to enjoy equipment is to experiment and whether you are looking to buy-sell-or trade (as the name suggests) you can find almost anything in the GolfWRX BST Forum. From one-off custom Scotty Cameron Circle T putters, to iron sets, wedges, and barely hit drivers, you can find it all in our constantly updated marketplace.

These are some of the latest cool finds from the GolfWRX BST, and if you are curious about the rules to participate in the BST Forum you can check them out here: GolfWRX BST Rules

Member Gator5 – Adams CMB Irons

Forged – check, Multi-Material construction – check, cool as all heck because these clubs are sweet and Adams made some really cool gear – check!

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Adams CMB Irons

Member Ksears – Brand New Mizuno MP20 Irons

Did someone say brand new Mizunos??? What else could you really want from a forged blade beside being meticulously crafted and forged in Japan – as well as being priced lower than retail.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link hereMP 20 Irons

Member 1hellaofashot – Ping G410 7 Wood

Speaking from experience let me just say this “stop denying the inevitable and embrace the 7 Wood” It’s endlessly versatile, more forgiving than a hybrid, and because this one for sale is a Ping G410 it is adjustable. Here’s your chance to dial in your own par 5 killer.

To see the full listing and additional pictures check out the link here: Ping 7 Wood

Remember that you can always browse the GolfWRX Classifieds any time here in our forums: GolfWRX Classifieds 

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