Faxon Regrets Not Having Surgery
Any regrets about surgery?
Every day, Faxon said candidly.
A recent MRI showed the ACL is completely torn with no hope of healing on its own. It feels OK, and Faxon said it doesnt bother him swinging the club. Its not a hindrance to golf, he said.
What he believes set him back was being unable to play other sports.
Faxon lives in Rhode Island and puts his clubs away for the winter. He has a history of doing well on the West Coast because he stays competitive in the offseason by playing squash, table tennis and working out.
I couldnt do any of that, Faxon said. I think that competitive stuff I missed from playing those sports has hurt. Every year, after I moved back to Rhode Island, I always got off to great starts on the West Coast having not touched a club ... I literally played two days before going to Hawaii.
The last two years, I havent done anything competitively off the course. I think its interesting.
Faxon had at least two top 10s on the West Coast every year since 2000, including his victory at the 2001 Sony Open. Since injuring his knee, he has made it to the weekend only once in two years on the West Coast'a tie for 29th this year at the Nissan Open.
Faxon felt like he turned the corner at Quail Hollow, where he played the weekend at 1 under par and tied for 44th. Confidence-wise, I made a huge step in two days, he said.
As for that surgery?
I think Im going to take care of it this fall, Faxon said.
Retief Goosen is playing the Byron Nelson Championship for the first time, and while he didnt get the red-carpet treatment at the airport, he got something even better.
The 93-year-old tournament host was there to pick him up.
His wife was standing there and I thought, Well, its nice of her to greet me, Goosen said. And then we walked up to the car and she said, Ive got somebody waiting in the car for you. I thought maybe it was my caddie. And it was Mr. Nelson sitting in the front seat.
I was a bit surprised, Goosen said. It was a great way to arrive at a golf tournament.
THE MAD SCIENTIST
Davis Love III recently pulled his old persimmons driver out of the closet, not out of curiosity, but as the guinea pig for his 11-year-old sons science project.
The hypothesis was which driver'wooden or titanium'hits the new golf balls farther. Love used the MacGregor driver he hit in college.
Downwind, it was OK, Love said. But anything into the wind, or any crosswind, it was a joke. You couldnt put any spin on it, and it would just nosedive. You had to hit hard and put spin on it. These balls dont spin.
The last time Love used a wooden driver, he had the Titleist 384, a wound ball. The long hitters generated plenty of spin, which enabled the ball to rise and carry. With titanium drivers and multilayer balls that dont spin as much, the idea is to launch the ball higher.
If you took Lanny Wadkins ball shape, and Vijay Singhs, it would make an egg shape, Love said.
He didnt disclose the results, but it sounds as though he helped his son with a dynamite graphic.
OPEN SCOUTING REPORT
A cool spring meant there was hardly any rough at Quail Hollow for the Wachovia Championship. Apparently, its not much better down the road at Pinehurst No. 2.
Chad Campbell was among those who took a detour to Pinehurst for a practice round before the U.S. Open next month. Along with noticing some tee boxes moved back, Campbell said the rough was down and the grass sparse in spots.
Theres a little work that needs to be done, Campbell said. Theyre sodding around some of the greens. The Bermuda (grass) didnt come in because of all the weather, so theres not much rough right now. They need some rain and hot weather.
Temperatures were in the 80s during the final round at Quail Hollow. Help might be on the way.
DOWN FROM THE BOOTH
The results might not show it yet, but Paul Azinger says he is having no trouble making the transition to the broadcast booth as an analyst for ABC Sports.
Azinger has played 10 times and made six cuts, and his best chance was his first tournament, when he started the final round of the Sony Open three shots out of the lead and tied for 17th.
But he was encouraged by his last four weeks, where he made the cut each time and tied for 21st in New Orleans.
What Im finding is that I found my golf swing, Azinger said after a tie for 56th in the Wachovia Championship. Ive just got to figure out how to score. I three-putted nine greens this week. Its too bad, because I struck it really well. I just putted like a donkey.
ABC has not televised a PGA Tour event since the Match Play Championship the last week of February. Azinger, who is 137th on the money list, will play Memphis and Memorial before ABC resumes its coverage at the Booz Allen Classic, and he plans to play Congressional, too.
Ive had no trouble compartmentalizing the two, Azinger said. Shifting gears, initially, was tough. But once Im doing the golf, Im completed engulfed in golf. And broadcasting is another entity. Its not like I finish my round, put on a tie and go into the booth.
Jack Nicklaus will be playing tournament golf in consecutive weeks'first at the Memorial, beginning June 2, then the Bayer Challenge outside Kansas City, Mo., on the Champions Tour at a course he designed. ... Fred Couples tied for second in the SK Telecom Open in South Korea and moved up to No. 35 in the world. Couples will lose points over the next month, and he needs to stay in the top 50 to be exempt for the U.S. Open. ... Annika Sorenstam not only lost her streak of 43 rounds at par or better, it was her first finish over par in a 72-hole event in 25 tournaments dating to the 2003 John Q. Hammons Hotel Classic in Tulsa, Okla.
S TAT OF THE WEEK
The last 12 stroke-play events on the PGA Tour have been decided on the last hole, eight of them in playoffs.
There are plenty of big hitters that arent good players.'Padraig Harrington, asked whether golf was all about power.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball
Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.
In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.
"It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’
Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.
“Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.
“That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’
Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.
The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving
Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.
The major championships I'm certainly proud of, but Barbara, the kids and my grandkids are the best things to ever happen to me. From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving! pic.twitter.com/wkma1Q9LlK— Jack Nicklaus (@jacknicklaus) November 23, 2017
GC Tiger Tracker:
Mixing Thanksgiving and waiting for a week from today. pic.twitter.com/u9m9WxQNYx— GC Tiger Tracker (@GCTigerTracker) November 23, 2017
Happy thanksgiving to everyone! Hope you have a wonderful day with family and friends. #Thankful— Steve Stricker (@stevestricker) November 23, 2017
Was reading about Thanksgiving. Originally they ate waterfowl, venison, ham, lobster, clams, berries, fruit, pumpkin, and squash. Seems a bit tastier than Turkey!— Frank Nobilo (@FrankNobiloGC) November 23, 2017
Literally food for thought.
Tyrone Van Aswegen:
Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017
Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.
Tributes pour in for legendary caddie Sheridan
Tributes are pouring in as golf celebrates the life of Greg Sheridan after receiving news of his passing.
Sheridan, a long-time LPGA caddie who worked for some of the game’s all-time greats, including Kathy Whitworth and Beth Daniel, died Wednesday in Indian Rocks Beach, Fla., at 63. He was diagnosed in July 2016 with brain and lung cancer.
Sheridan worked the last dozen years or so with Natalie Gulbis, who expressed her grief in an Instagram post on Wednesday:
“Greg…I miss you so much already and it hasn’t even been a day. 15+ seasons traveling the world you carried me & my bag through the highs and lows of golf and life. You were so much more than my teammate on the course…Thank you.”
Sheridan was on Whitworth’s bag for the last of her LPGA-record 88 titles.
“When I first came on tour, I would try to find out how many times Greg won,” Gulbis told Golfweek. “It’s a crazy number, like 50.”
Matthew Galloway, a caddie and friend to Sheridan, summed up Sheridan’s impressive reach after caddying with him one year at the LPGA Founders Cup, where the game’s pioneers are honored.
“Best Greg story,” Galloway tweeted on Thanksgiving morning, “coming up 18 at PHX all the founders were in their chairs. Greg goes, `Yep, caddied for her, her and her.’ Legend.”
Best Greg story: coming up 18 at PHX all the founders were in their chairs. Greg goes “Yep, caddied for her, her, her and her” Legend— Matthew Galloway (@matthewgalloway) November 23, 2017
In a first-person column for Golf Magazine last year, Gulbis focused on Sheridan while writing about the special bond between players and caddies. She wrote that she won the “looper lottery” when she first hired Sheridan in ’04.
“Greg and I have traveled the world, and today he is like family,” Gulbis wrote. “Sometimes, he’s a psychologist. Last year, my mom got sick and it was a distraction, but he was great. When I used to have boyfriend issues and breakup issues, he was my confidant. In a world where caddies sometimes spill secrets, Greg has kept a respectful silence, and I can’t thank him enough for that. He’s an extension of me.”
Four months after Gulbis wrote the column, Sheridan was diagnosed with cancer.
“The LPGA family is saddened to hear of the loss of long-time tour caddie, Greg Sheridan,” the LPGA tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and players he walked with down the fairways. #RIP.”
The LPGA family is saddened to hear of the loss of long-time Tour caddie, Greg Sheridan. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and players he walked with down the fairways. #RIP pic.twitter.com/QKy0YdK249— LPGA (@LPGA) November 22, 2017
Dean Herden was among the legion of caddies saddened by the news.
“Greg was a great guy who I respected a lot and taught me some great things over the years,” Herden texted to GolfChannel.com.
Here are some of heartfelt messages that are rolling across Twitter:
Retired LPGA great Annika Sorenstam:
Sad to hear the passning of Greg Sheridan. This photo brings back many memories. Always respected his caddy skills and devotion to womens golf. @natalie_gulbis @LPGA #RIPGreg pic.twitter.com/lHU3Ixz9Vk— Annika Sorenstam (@ANNIKA59) November 23, 2017
LPGA commissioner Mike Whan in a retweet of Gulbis:
Golf Channel reporter and former tour player Jerry Foltz:
Professional caddies are often overlooked and underrated. But they're just as often the unsung MVP of a player's success. We just lost a great one. RIP Greg Sheridan. He was the 1st to welcome me to my LPGA assignment years ago. He will be missed eternally.— Jerry Foltz (@JerryFoltzGC) November 22, 2017
Rest with the Angels now, Greg Sheridan. ❤️— Christina Kim (@TheChristinaKim) November 22, 2017
LPGA caddie Shaun Clews:
RIP Greg Sheridan. One of the most successful and great caddies of World Golf, period.— Shaun Clews (@shaunclews1973) November 22, 2017
LPGA caddie Jonny Scott:
Sad to here that long time tour caddy Greg Sheridan has passed away! RIP Greg, you will be missed. — Jonny Scott (@stixy76) November 22, 2017
LPGA caddie Kevin Casas:
The world is a sadder place today without our buddy Greg Sheridan, a caddy and a friend for lifetimes...Godspeed buddy— Kevin Casas (@TheKevinCasas) November 23, 2017
LPGA pro Jennie Lee:
So sad to hear the news of long time LPGA caddie Greg Sheridan. I️ remember sitting next to him on the plane from Walmart to the US Open one year and he gave me the best words of wisdom on player/caddie chemistry. He will be missed greatly. Thinking of you @natalie_gulbis ❤️— Jennie Lee (@JennieLeeGolf) November 23, 2017