LATE NIGHT ROUNDS
It's hard to believe there has already been another completed PGA Tour even after the U.S. Open. At the same time, it seems like an eon ago since Rose channeled Hogan and hit that clutch iron from the fairway on 18 to lock up the win at Merion.
The intervening days have proven how both fleeting and event-driven sports fame is today. Since Rose lifted the U.S. Open trophy, Lebron James scored 37 points in game 7 to lead the Heat to the NBA title and last night the Chicago Blackhawks scored 2 goals 17 seconds apart in the last 90 seconds of game six to come back and win the game 3-2 and hoist the Stanley Cup.
You have to strike quick in the sports world and Rose did just that in the days after his win a week ago Sunday. Although the late night talk shows are not the barometer of hipness and popularity they used to be, Rose did feature himself on Late Night and Letterman's Top 10 list:
Golf has occassionally mades it onto Dave's Top Ten list. Rose was slightly less wooden than Annika Sorenstam. Of course the Top Ten list also dealt with Tiger Woods' fidelity issues back in 2009. If you're finiding yourself straining a bit to laugh - it's because the Dave's Top Ten 10 list is now more nostalgic than purely funny. It was never laugh out loud funny but was not supposed to be. It was originally so great because it was a bit subversive like Letterman himself back in the 1980s. There was something more subversively funny and lame about the top ten lists back when Letterman did the Late Night on NBC.
Fittingly, golf also made it to Late Night With Jimmy Fallon with Jerry Seinfeld who produced some old school stand-up on the topic of golf using the U.S. Open as a segue.
As for the actual tournament this past weekend, there was an amazing moment when it looked like Ken Duke had locked up his first win (and thus becoming the oldest first time winner on the Tour) but Chris Stroud knocked in a birdie chip on 18 to take it to extra holes.
It had all the makings of heartbreak for Duke. You could imagine him in retirement sitting on the porch with no Tour wins thinking about Stoud's chip-in. But Duke sucked it up and hit an amazing iron on the second extra hole to a bit more than 2 feet for the birdie and the win. I'm sure he would have taken the win in regulation, but that shot under pressure in extra holes made the win even sweeter.
I WOULD USE THIS
I love the looks of this think but my bet is we will never see these because the lawyers will get in the way. If everyone waas using these, we could get rounds down to 2.5 hours except for the occassional 5 hour round while you have to wait for the EMTs to take a couple players off the course on a spine-board.
They look fantastic and better than Bubba's hovercraft. Don't worry about the lawsuits, I'll sign the waiver.
PETULANCE OR PASSION
The U.S. Open and the Traveler Championship (although, babe, surely we all preferred when it was called the Sammy Davis Jr. Greater Hartford Open!) gave us some moments of candor, anger and passion from the players. I suspect the PGA Tour doesn't like this stuff but they should encourage it. From a fan's standpoint, we want to see this passion - even if it borders on (or outright invades) petulence.
Jason Dufner played great on Sunday and his mixture of laconic standoffishness and emotion somehow draws you in.
It was also great to see Phil say what he really thought of the long par 3 on Sunday [30 seconds in] when telling Mike Davis it was "terrible ... I can't even reach it."
Rory played well enough the first couple of days to contend but then "moved" on Saturday. He moved down. As we mentioned previously, Saturdays at the U.S. Open are not like other tournaments in which you want to shoot a low score (i.e. Saturday at other tournaments is "moving day"). The U.S. Open is about staying exactly where you are -- hopefully within 4 shots of par. We called it "milling about" day. Instead, McIlroy dropped further behind and Merion showed that agression would not be rewarded. Frustration would ensue.
Not exaclty footage for the next Nike Golf ad.
More recently this weekend, Bubba Watson showed a bit of petulance dressing down his caddie with the cameras running. Bubba was in the hunt all weekend until he tripled bogeyed the par 3 16th on Sunday afternoon playing in the final group. Duke and Stroud both parred 16 and finished 2 strokes ahead of Watson.
Some may say this is Watson being petty and rude and not taking responsibility for his own shot. It doesn't matter who was right, it just makes for better television. It is infinitely more interesting to see real the relationships and interactions between a player and his caddie. Great work by CBS because this makes for compelling television even if the PGA Tour doesn't like it.
Watson gets a pass even though he isn't blonde (see below). If he and his caddy have a strong relationship (a Green jacket should help), then this should be no problem but just part of working together. Bubba has shown that he is not exactly the nicest guy al the time in the world but the media likes him so he typically gets very positive coverage.
As an aside, do any of you wonder how much of Watson's popularity is based on his name Bubba? Let's say his name was Frank. Would "Frank Watson" be as popular with the media? It surely isn't as fun to say. He's not the best interview and can be a bit of a jerk (which I kinda like in terms of television and drama so it is not a criticism -- hell, John McInroe was a jerk and he's awesome). If Frank Watson was snippy with his caddy and reporters, would the media be falling all over themselves to get his opinion on everything? True, Watson has won a Masters ... but so has Vijay Singh.
LIKE RAPPING, IT'S FUNNIER WHEN DON BY KIDS
We've all tried the Happy Gilmore swing (to varying degrees of success although Paddy Harrington has probably shown the most success). If this kid carries this all the way through, he could change golf forever ... or go on to make millions by writing and producing comedies that seem sophmoric bu somehow seem to make money (although will the run finally end with Grown Ups 2 in which they managed not to even make the trailer funny).
While we loved Bubba Watson's little outburst, the omnipresent cameras and replays can pick up some unwanted highlights. Gary McCord pointing it out doesn't help.
I guess blondes do have more fun.
It does bring to mind this little clip of the local news item that hit the Internet this week in which the reporter dropped some f-bombs.
Do blondes get better treatment? Remember this guy from earlier this year who got fired after his first day of work that involved f-bombing.
Now, a real comparison cannot be made because the woman reporter Nadrich cannot be blamed because she was not live (they put the wrong tape in at the studio). Even so, like being named "Bubba", I just have a funny feeling blondes get preferential treatment. Everyone seems to know it.
USING GOLF (COURSES) TO GET AHEAD IN BUSINESS
Blonde, male, female or just plain nuts, we received more proof this week that business can be initiated on the golf course ... or an abandoned golf course in the case of Prancercise vixen Joanna Rohrback.
If you recall, we first identified that the viral sensation was originally filmed on a grown-over golf course in south Florida. Well, John Mayer's newest single now stars Ms. Rohrback.
Thankfully, they moved the production off the golf course and onto what appears to be the street on which either the McFlys live or where Michael Corleone came back to let Kay know he was back in America.
EVERYONE IN HOCKEY CAN NOW GO GOLF
As we pointed out before, while the NHL playoffs are being played, it is a criticism to a hockey player to say that he is golfing. It means he's got no chance at the Stanley Cup that year. The Cup was handede out last night to the Chicago Blackhawks.
The finals last night made me realize that even though golf takes place over a relatively long period, it not the best sport for montages. Great sport montages involve both miraculous plays and emotion shares among teammates. The major professional team sports can produce good montages although it is NCAA basketball and March Madness that has some of the finest for televised sport. In that tradition, one couldn't help but notice Hockey Night in Canada's great montage to finish the NHL season. It is as much the pain and sacrifice as it is the amazing plays needed to hoist the Cup that makes it emotional -- maybe it's why it is the kind of thing Tiger dreams about.
Maybe it's me but I kinda think YouTube may take this down with all the NHL footage and a Rolling Stones song (which we know can be a bit pricey) ... so here's the link to the HNIC site if this embedded video is disabled.