Mickelson says Woods-McIlroy spat overblown

By Associated PressSeptember 29, 2010, 7:05 pm

Ryder Cup

NEWPORT, Wales – Phil Mickelson came to the defense of Rory McIlroy on Wednesday, calling him one of the classiest players in golf and his desire to play Tiger Woods is the goal of every player who wants to beat the best.

The back-and-forth between McIlroy and Woods has captivated the early days of the Ryder Cup. McIlroy said in August he would “love to face” the world’s No. 1 player unless his game improves. Asked about that comment, Woods defiantly said, “Me, too.”

Mickelson was surprised to hear it had become such a big story.

“That’s the type of charisma that Rory McIlroy has,” Mickelson said. “He’s just like any other top player that wants to take on the best. That’s not any type of controversy or saga.”

Padraig Harrington said everyone on Europe’s team wanted to play Woods in previous Ryder Cups because when the world’s No. 1 player was on top of his game, his opponents had nothing to lose. Woods was expected to win every match.

Now that Woods’ is a captain’s pick who has failed to win this year, Harrington isn’t so sure.

“In many ways, it will be a tougher match this time around,” Harrington said. “He’ll be more enthusiastic, more motivated, so I would be very wary of him myself.”

Woods said a year ago that McIlroy had the game to eventually be No. 1 in the world. The 21-year-old from Northern Ireland won his first PGA Tour event this year by closing with a record 62 at Quail Hollow.

McIlroy tied a major championship record when he opened with a 63 at St. Andrews in the British Open, where he tied for third; and he tied for third at the PGA Championship.

Told that Woods’ did not appear happy with McIlroy’s comments, Mickelson again was surprised.

“They get along great, are you kidding me?” Mickelson said. “Rory is one of the nicest guys you can imagine. He’s one of the classiest guys out on tour. Tiger gets along with just about everybody – usually because he beats them, and he’s nice to them when he beats them. Rory is as classy a guy as there is. I’ve been paired with him a bunch, and I really enjoy playing with him.”

McIlroy is the latest player whose comments annoyed Woods.

The most famous was Stephen Ames, who jokingly said he had a chance against Woods in the Match Play Championship, “especially where he’s hitting the ball.” Woods beat him in the first round, 9 and 8.

At the 2000 Presidents Cup, the caddie for Vijay Singh – Woods’ opponent in the single match – wrote “Tiger Who?” on the back of his cap. Woods won the match, and later told that story by saying the score (2 and 1) was his best response. There also was the time Michael Campbell said he looked forward to taking on Woods at the Match Play, and when Woods stepped on the first tee, he said to Campbell, “I hear you want a piece of me.” Woods won, 5 and 4.

Whether Woods and McIlroy play each other is a matter of chance, as the Ryder Cup features a blind draw.

U.S. captain Corey Pavin said it would violate the spirit of the matches for him and European captain Colin Montgomerie to arrange Woods and McIlroy to face each other in singles.

“But I think it would be fun for me to watch,” Pavin said.

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Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.

Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.

“I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”

The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.

“I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.  

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


Masters victory


Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


Green jacket tour

Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


Man of the people


Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


Growing family

Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


Departure from TaylorMade


Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


Squashed beef with Paddy

Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


Victory at Valderrama


Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
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Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

Well, this is a one new one.

According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

“No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

“If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

“I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.