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Daly withdraws from Greenbrier, engages Jason Sobel on Twitter

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It’s not clear exactly what knotted John Daly’s American flag-patterned knickers, but he wasn’t happy with Golf Channel Senior Writer Jason Sobel.

It seems Long John wasn’t pleased by the insinuation of Sobel’s headline for the writer’s piece on Daly’s withdrawal from the Greenbrier Classic, his tweets, or both.

Before we get to the headline in question or the Twitter back-and-forth (because that’s how real men air their grievances in 2013), it’s fair to make the following point: It’s not clear what Sobel’s original headline was. Further, having some experience in writing for online outlets, I can say that the “teaser” headline on the front page is under the editor’s control, rather than the writer’s, generally speaking.

So, the click-through headlines on various portions of the Golf Channel website read:

“Daly facing elbow surgery, adds to WD total”

“Daly nears 40 career Tour withdrawals at Greenbrier”

However, the headline of Sobel’s piece (which he certainly could have changed during/after the brouhaha) reads, “Daly WD’s from Greenbrier, headed for surgery.”

All this by way of saying, we don’t know exactly what steamed Daly’s clams, or whether it was solely Sobel’s keystrokes.

The second possibility is that Daly didn’t read the article/see the headline and simply reacted negatively to this tweet from Sobel:

1.

It’s pointless to speculate as to what Daly thought Sobel was insinuating with the tweet/headline. One guess, however, is that he felt Sobel was saying he withdrew too much/unnecessarily.

Of course Sobel, never one to let sleeping dogs lie, responded via Twitter. Daly, being of the same mind, replied too:

Screen shot 2013-07-06 at 10.54.03 AM

What are the “true facts” that Daly is referencing? Apparently the fact that he has a torn tendon in his elbow, which he has seemingly been playing with for some time, as per this tweet.

Screen shot 2013-07-06 at 11.03.49 AM

With this in mind, Daly also might be less-than-thrilled by this passage from Sobel’s column:

With Tiger Woods already sidelined because of a sore left elbow and unable to compete in this week’s Greenbrier Classic, one of the tournament’s other big draws, John Daly, bowed out early in his second round with a similar injury.

Sure, the injury is similar, in that it’s a malady of the elbow. However, a torn tendon requiring surgery is a bit more severe than Tiger’s tennis elbow.

Regardless, it’s been clear for some time that Jason Sobel isn’t a Loudmouth Golf pants-wearing member of the JD fan club. There are numerous examples of this, such as this 2010 piece he penned for ESPN titled, “Retired or not, Daly truly is done” — the tone of which you can surely guess.

Of course, when Daly tweets, “You kick players while they’re down is that what u report? Now, I understand what players meant about u! #scum,” you don’t get the feeling he has a Jason Sobel book sitting on his nightstand. Further, Daly seems to indicate that many pros are of the same mind toward the former ESPN journalist.

Whether you’re on Team Sobel or Team Daly on this one (or in general), it’s pretty clear that Twitter wasn’t the best venue for a discussion of differences and that a reconciliation between the two won’t be showing up in your Twitter feed anytime soon.

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20 Comments

20 Comments

  1. Tyboooo

    Jun 30, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    I wish they would quit giving him extensions. It’s not fair to the other guys out there.

    He misses cuts more than he makes them. And if he does make a cut he is never close to the top of the leader board. Time to start earning your starts.

  2. jc

    May 28, 2014 at 5:29 pm

    there are lots of guys who have won a major or two and you can find them on the minor tours trying to EARN their way back in. I last saw Daly at Riviera in L.A. IT was a warm day and john is wearing a heavy windbreaker and playing like crud. Of course he missed the cut. He should just quit and run a golf course (not the bar) and sell tshirts or something.

  3. qabloona

    Jul 10, 2013 at 2:43 pm

    Don’t know anything about Sobel but if you watch PGA practice sessions at pro tournaments it is obvious that the other players have a genuine fondness for Daly. Watching them on the practice putting green at any tourney and and you see any number of players coming up to him and wishing him well.Wish him well.

  4. wtfci

    Jul 8, 2013 at 1:29 pm

    Honestly, call your mark if you need to react. Like I want to know every spat you have. Spare me.

  5. Søren Skadhede

    Jul 8, 2013 at 3:33 am

    “Talking” via Twitter like that certainly isn’t helping anybody. Now, I’m both on twitter, FB, linkedin etc., so this is not a bashing on modern communication means. But there are some drawbacks to places like twitter and facebook. To me, the clearest analogy – particularly here with JD & JS – is road rage: you sit in your own car with closed windows and doors locked screaming at everybody. Would you seriously do that if you where on a bicycle, or pulling into the same gas station and getting out of the car?

    Thankfully, most people won’t, but very often services like twitter provide you with the same “protective bubble” as the cars does. One major difference though: the yelling in the car usually stays in the car – tweets remain and recycle…

  6. PGAPankey

    Jul 7, 2013 at 10:49 am

    Regardless of who’s side you are on the fact is that Daly is taking a spot that could go to another player. These sponsors exemption spots are usually given to bigger name players in an attempt to draw fans. Totally understandable when the tournament organizers are in the business of getting more fans and bigger tv ratings. But whenever I see a story like this is always wonder about the “last guy out” who’s spot was taken by Daly. Playing in a PGATour event is a big deal for some guys, you hope that these sponsore exemptions really appreciate the opportunity. With surgery coming up it seems obvious that this wd is for good reason, but with 30+ in his career you have to wonder if a few wern’t a bit cynical.

    • Ryan

      Jul 7, 2013 at 12:56 pm

      Yeah, normally I’d side with Daly and say Sobel is being a jerk, but I mean, 38 career withdraws? Find someone else who has half that and I’d be shocked. We can’t keep doing the same, oh I feel so sorry for John, his 38th withdrawal is just as credible as the first. Sure, Sobel was being kind of a jerk, but there is a point where John Daly has to reconnect with reality and see the consequences of his actions, which frankly should mean sponsors exemptions going to up and coming kids with talent and desire like Jordan Speith or something like that. Giving them to Daly is just a waste and an embarrassment at this point.

    • c

      Jul 7, 2013 at 1:00 pm

      I dont see how John is taking someone else’s spot, the guy has won two majors and attracted huge galleries and new fans. You can say the same thing about Tom Watson, why is he playing, what is he trying to prove. I don’t think John wanted to have to WD it just happened

  7. Joe Golfer

    Jul 7, 2013 at 12:33 am

    Seems like the writer of this article on GolfWRX has it right.
    Daly seems to be responding to past slights against him by Sobel.
    I don’t see anything in the current “tweets” that should set Daly off like that. He totally over-reacted, in this particular instance.
    As for Sobel, I’m really not familiar with him, so I can’t give an opinion on his reputation or if he is a “negative writer”, but his brief tweets don’t sound malicious or as Daly asserts, kicking a player while he is down.

    • Pat M

      Jun 16, 2015 at 5:15 pm

      Sobel reminds me of Rich Lerner and Chris Berman. Nobodies with a big mouth who never played the game.

  8. D T

    Jul 6, 2013 at 10:46 pm

    I think it’s sad that adult men are settling their differences going back and forth on Twitter, Facebook, etc., instead of talking face to face like men. At least make a phone call. The description of a man is changing for the worst daily.

    • donald davis

      Jul 7, 2013 at 1:03 am

      I am not a fan of either jason sobel or john daly. The golf channel has become unwatchable at times. Predictions and cliches and “johnny tour pros” everywhere. Boring. Bring back John Hawkins.

    • Marty

      Jul 7, 2013 at 2:28 pm

      definition of a man, lol

    • stephenf

      Jul 14, 2013 at 2:53 am

      Seriously. I was just thinking what a girl fight this was, but somebody will probably post and tell me that’s sexist. They’re probably right. I have a wife and two daughters at home (the only ones remaining out of five), and I don’t think any of them would fight it out with twitlanguage and phones over something like this.

  9. Im nobody:(

    Jul 6, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    Poor John Daly the circus act is over:) maybe he should just fade off into the sunset:) he is taking up a spot that could be better used for an amateur player!

  10. c

    Jul 6, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    Jason Sobel is a 25 handicap journalist on a good day

  11. fairway fitter

    Jul 6, 2013 at 6:44 pm

    Sobel’s writing is sophomoric at best. Simply put; too many golf writers out there for GC to employ this guy.

    • Steve

      Jul 7, 2013 at 8:07 am

      Absolutely agree — Maybe he can get a job on ‘Morning Drive’ with the other yellow journalists.

  12. Joey5Picks

    Jul 6, 2013 at 12:59 pm

    John Daly long ago became a circus act. A non-competitive time bomb tournaments would give a sponsor’s exemption to to draw fans. His self-destructive personality traits and lifestyle caught up with him. Personally, I have no interest in watching him play.

    While Sobel’s articles may have been critical of Daly, are they wrong? Daly has WDed 30-whatever times. It’s a fact. No malice in reporting that as it’s part of a pattern.

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Five Things We Learned: Friday at the PGA Championship

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Early on Friday morning, a vendor working for the PGA Championship was struck and killed by a tournament shuttle bus. Nearly at the same time, as he arrived for his second round of tournament play, Scottie Scheffler attempted to detour around the scene, and was arrested, booked, then released. Somehow, Scheffler returned to Valhalla and played his second round of the tournament. Despite the jokes and memes of some in the golf industry, the tournament took a back seat to life and humanity on Friday morning. Our prayers are with the family and friends of the vendor, as well as with all involved.

Day two of Valhalla’s fourth PGA Championship did not see a repeat of the record-setting 62 posted by first-day leader, Xander Schauffele. The low card of 65 was returned by five golfers, when play was suspended by darkness. Five golfers still on the course, were on the positive side of the expected cut line of one-under par, while 12 more either had work to do, or knew that their week had come to an end.

The best 70 golfers and ties would advance to the weekend. 64 golfers figured at minus-two on Friday evening, with another 15 at one-under par. The most likely scenario saw those at even par, headed home. The formula was simple: finish under par and stick around. Play resumed at 7:15 on Saturday, to sort through the last six threesomes. Before the night turned over, we learned five important things to set us up for a weekend of excitement and excellence. It’s a pleasure to share them with you.

1. The 65s

On Thursday, three golfers etched 65 into the final box on their card of play. On Friday, nearly twice that number finished at six-under par for the round. Collin Morikawa moved from top-five into a spot in the final pairing. The 2020 PGA Champion at Harding Park teed off at the tenth hole, and turned in minus-two. He then ran off five consecutive birdies from the fourth tee to the eighth green, before finding trouble at the ninth, his last hole of the day. Bogey at nine dropped him from -12 to -11.

The same score moved Bryson DeChambeau from 11th spot to T4. Joining the pair with 65s on day two were Matt Wallace and Hideki Matsuyama (each with 70-65 for T11) and Lee Hodges (71-65 for T16.) Morikawa, Matsuyama, and DeChambeau have major championship wins in their names, while Wallace has been on the when to break through list his entire career. Hodges epitomizes the term journeyman, bu the PGA Championship is the one major of them all when lesser-known challegers find a way to break through.

2. The Corebridge team of PGA Professionals

Last year’s Cinderella story, Michael Block, did not repeat his Oak Hill success. Block missed the cut by a fair amount. Of the other 19, however, two were poised to conclude play and reach the weekend’s play. Braden Shattuck had finished at one-under par, while Jeremy Wells (-2) and Ben Polland (-1) were inside the glory line, each with two holes to play.

With three holes to play on the front nine, Kyle Mendoza sits at even par. His task is simple: play the final triumvirate in one-under par or better. If Mendoza can pull off that feat, and if the aforementioned triumvirate can hold steady, the club professional segment of the tournament will have four representatives in play over the weekend.

3. Scottie Scheffler

In his post-round interview, Scheffler admitted that his second round, following the surreal nature of the early morning’s events, was made possible by the support he received from patrons and fellow competitors. The new father expressed his great sadness for the loss of life, and also praised some of the first responders that had accompanied him in the journey from course to jail cell. Yes, jail cell. Scheffler spoke of beginning his warm-up routine with jail-house stretches.

Once he returned to Valhalla, Scheffler found a way to a two-under, opening nine holes. He began birdie-bogey-birdie on holes ten through twelve, then eased into a stretch of pars, before making birdie at the par-five 18th. His second nine holes featured three birdies and six pars, allowing him to improve by one shot from day one. Scheffler found himself in a fourth-place tie with Thomas Detry, and third-round tee time in the third-last pairing. Scheffler’s poise illustrated grace under pressure, which is the only way that he could have reached this status through 36 holes.

4. Sahith!

It’s a little bit funny that the fellow who followed 65 with 67, is nowhere to be found on the video highlight reels. He’s not alone in that respect, as Thomas Detry (T4) was also ignored by the cameras. Theegala has won on tour, and has the game to win again. The Californian turned in four-under par on Friday, then made an excruciating bogey at the par-five tenth. He redeemed himself two holes later, with birdie at the twelfth hole.

Theegala is an unproven commodity in major events. He has one top-ten finish: the 2023 Masters saw him finish 9th. He did tie for 40th in 2023, in this event, at Oak Hill. Is he likely to be around on Sunday? Yes. Will he be inside the top ten? If he is, he has a shot on Sunday. If Saturday is not a 67 or better, Theegala will not figure in the outcome of the 2024 championship.

5. X Man!!

After the fireworks of day one, Xander Schauffele preserved his lead at the 2024 PGA Championship. He holds a one-shot advantage and will tee off in the final pairing on Saturday, with Collin Morikawa. Eleven holes into round two, Schauffele made his first bogey of the week. The stumble stalled his momentum, as he had played the first ten holes in minus-four. Will the run of seven pars at the end signal a negative turn in the tide of play for Schauffele? We’ll find out on day three. One thing is for sure: minus twelve will not win this tournament. Schauffele will likely need to reach twenty under par over the next two days, to win his first major title.

 

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Scottie Scheffler arrested, charged, and released after traffic incident at Valhalla

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As first reported by ESPN’s Jeff Darlington, Scottie Scheffler has been detained by police on the way to Valhalla Golf Club this morning due to a traffic misunderstanding.

“Breaking News: World No. 1 golfer Scottie Scheffler has been detained by police in handcuffs after a misunderstanding with traffic flow led to his attempt to drive past a police officer into Valhalla Golf Club. The police officer attempted to attach himself to Scheffler’s car, and Scheffler then stopped his vehicle at the entrance to Valhalla. The police officer then began to scream at Scheffler to get out of the car.

“When Scheffler exited the vehicle, the officer shoved Scheffler against the car and immediately placed him in handcuffs. He is now being detained in the back of a police car.”

Darlington also posted a video of the dramatic moment which you can view below:

There was an unrelated accident at around 5am, which is what may have caused some of the misunderstanding of which traffic was moving.

Speaking on ESPN, Darlington broke down exactly what he witnessed in full detail:

“Entering Valhalla Golf Club this morning, we witness a car pull around us that was Scottie Scheffler. Scottie Scheffler has been detained by police officers, placed in the back of a police vehicle in handcuffs after he tried to pull around what he believed to be security, ended up being police officers.

“They told him to stop, when he didn’t stop, the police officer attached himself to the vehicle, and Scheffler then travelled another 10 yards before stopping the car.”

“The police officer then grabbed at his arm, attempting to pull him out of the car, before Scheffler eventually opened the door, at which point the police officer pulled Scheffler out of the car, pushed him up against the car and immediately placed him in handcuffs. Scheffler was then walked over to the police car, placed in the back in handcuffs.

“Very stunned about what was happening, he looked towards me as he was in those handcuffs and said ‘please help me’. He very clearly didn’t know what was happening in the situation.”

“It moved very quickly, very rapidly, very aggressively. He was detained in that police vehicle for approximately 20 minutes. The police officers at that point did not understand that Scottie Scheffler was a golfer in the tournament, nor of course that he is the number one player in the world.”

Due to the accident, play has been delayed this morning. Scheffler’s current tee time for the second round of the PGA Championship is 10:08 a.m.

Scheffler’s mugshot following the incident:

*Update*

Scheffler has been charged with 2nd Degree assault of a police officer, criminal mischief 3rd degree, reckless driving and disregarding signals from an officer directing traffic.

*Update*

According to ESPN+, Scottie Scheffler has been released and is now on his way to the golf course.

*Update*

Scottie Scheffler arrives at Valhalla ahead of his 10:08 a.m second round tee time.

*Update*

The PGA of America released this statement regarding the fatal accident, which diverted traffic at Valhalla this morning.

“This morning we were devastated to learn that a worker with one of our vendors was tragically struck and killed by a shuttle bus outside Valhalla Golf Club. This is heartbreaking to all of us involved with the PGA Championship. We extend our sincere condolences to their family and loved ones.” 

Per the PGA Tour, Scheffler released the following statement.

We will update this developing story as more information on the situation is revealed.

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Five Things We Learned: Thursday at the PGA Championship

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It was a year ago that we the north, found ourselves with toes and fingers crossed. The Oak Hill PGA Championship of 2023 finished on schedule, despite the iffiness of weather in upstate New York. It’s 75 degrees today across the Niagara Frontier, which makes it two out of three (2022 was the same way) for sultry, unseasonal weather.

Louisville is, let’s be honest, a much better bet for a May PGA Championship, and Valhalla is an exciting venue for the year’s second major championship on the men’s circuit. Brooks Koepka came in as the defending champion, and Rory McIlroy arrived as the last golfer to win a major at the Nicklaus-designed course. That was a decade ago, and lord, have things changed in the world and golf.

Day one at Valhalla offered walk-in eagles, buckets of birdies, and potential for a record-low, winner’s score. We’ll get right to the meat of the matter, with five things that we learned. After all, if you can make par from the muck, anything’s possible in the land of the horses.

1. X marks this spot

Xander Schauffele went head-to-head last Sunday with Rory McIlroy, at least on the practice green. By the end of the round, Rors had won for a fourth time at Charlotte, while the X Man sat scratching his head, wondering what went wrong. Fortunately for us, Xander didn’t sulk.

The San Diego State alumnus absolutely torched Jack’s track with 62. Four birdies on the front nine, were followed by five more on the inward side. Schauffele never looked as if bogey was a consideration, and he might have gone even lower. Despite winning the Covid-delayed Gold medal at the Japan Olympics (I consider it a major, btdubs) Schauffele continues to chase an initial men’s major, and the validation that it brings. If 62 doesn’t get you over the hump, who knows what will.

2. Scottie starts strong? Aye.

Last month, Mr. Scheffler won a second green jacket at Augusta National. Last year in Rochester, Mr. Scheffler tied for second in this event. Mr. Scheffler began play today with a walk-in eagle, a one-hop affair that never looked as if it might go anywhere but to its home. Scheffler had a few rough holes, but that’s to be expected from a new dad. Each time he made bogey, he bounced back with birdie, so he has that short memory that winners crave. Surprisingly, Scheffler failed to manage one last birdie at the reachable 18th. Perhaps that miss will motivate him in round two.

3. LIV Check-In

It’s good to check in on the departed from time to time, to ensure that the fellows formerly known as PGA Tour members are doing well. It’s safe to say that some of them can still play. Defending champion Brooks Koepka posted 67 on the day, He had an eagle and three birdies on the day, with only a stumble at the 17th. He’s tied for 7th. Bryson DeChambeau made an eagle of his own, but also had a bogey, at the 12th hole. He cohabits eleventh position with Cameron Smith, who ALSO had a bogey on his card. They are one shot behind Koepka, and a fistful more behind the leader.

4. Sahith and Tony at Schauffele’s heels

Both Finau and Theegala represent a special sort of athletic golfer. Their power and their charisma blend to draw golf fans to their groups. Let’s be honest, too, and say that they don’t look like the traditional professional golfer. As much as Tiger Woods did in the 1990s, they have the power to bring greater diversity to the sport.

In terms of their play today, well, only Xander was better. Finau had a clean card, with six birdies and twelve pars. Theegala had seven birdies, ten pars, and one bogey. Each combined power and finesse to insert themselves squarely in contention, ahead of round two. How will they, and Xander as well, manage the afternoon putting surface on Friday? That’s the great unknown!

5. All those other guys are here!

Rory, Tom Kim, Collin, and Viktor are all at minus-three or lower. Valhalla may not be a traditional golf course, but it is the type of course that the world’s best play well. McIlroy currently sits at minus-five, tied with Robert MacIntyre, Kim, and three others in fourth position.  Maverick McNealy finished fast to reach the same figure, as did Tom Hoge. Morikawa closed with birdie to join the sextet at five below. Both Scheffler and Morikawa finished their rounds late on Thursday, meaning they should see smoother greens on Friday morning. If someone is a betting soul, wiser wagers could not be placed on better names than those two, two-time, major champions. Rory will tee off in Friday’s afternoon wave but, hey, he’s Rory, and he won going away last week at Quail Hollow, a course not unlike Valhalla.

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