Jesper Tries to Get an Edge - Any Edge
So here was Parnevik, getting ready for the final day at the 2000 Byron Nelson. Lets see, what to wear, what to wear? The black pants with the stovepipe legs ' naw. All white, perhaps, with stovepipe legs? Nope, again. OK, how about pink ' shocking pink with stovepipe legs? Bingo!
He was the pink panther, if you please. Before anyone could mount a protest, Parnevik had dispatched three of Americas finest ' Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Davis Love III. He did it in a three-hole playoff with Mickelson and Love. Mickelson sat down after the second playoff hole when he couldnt make birdie to match the other two. Then Love was dispatched on the third hole with a bogey while Parnevik was making an easy par. Chalk one up for the conservative gent in the ' pink pants?
It was so close all day, and you never really thought about winning, he said. You just try to stay in touch with the guys. I was always one behind, two behind, three behind, two behind.
I was just happy to get in the playoff in the end. Davis had a six- or seven-footer to win the tournament in regulation. It was a huge bonus.
Parnevik couldnt help but pull a little for Love, even though he was the opponent.
I mean, hes a great guy, Jesper says. Theres nothing really bad to say about him. Hes a great player, great guy. Hes always been nice to me ever since I came out on tour. Hes just a great guy.
The pink pants, however, were just part of the Jesper mystique. A Swedish pal, Johann Lindenberg, designs the clothes, as he does for another Tour player, Charles Howell. Parnevik has always been way out there close to the cusp, though he was much more of a character five or 10 years ago than he is today.
The story about the volcano dust has been told ad nauseam now ' he used to eat little scoops of it to help purify the body. He appeared on Swedish television to put his feet into a bathtub and sent 220 volts of electricity surging through the water and into his body, the idea being to get all the organs of the body working in harmony. Hes worn a device around his neck to protect against electromagnetic radiation.
Jesper had the fillings in his teeth replaced with a material which was said to prevent allergies. He wore battery-powered strobe-light glasses for 40 minutes at a time to help synchronize neural firings in both sides of the brain. He wore headphones which produced eerie sounds for the same reason. And he allowed a man to collect samples of his blood to reverse the electronic frequencies of any harmful elements, transmitting the healing frequencies around the world to Parnevik with radio waves.
Most of the things youve heard about are things that Ive tried out in an attempt to improve my physique, my mental side and all that, he said. The results, if they are not what I thought they would be, I dont continue trying them. But I did pretty much all the time look for ways to stay ahead of the guys.
All that was the Jesper of years past. Hes a father now with four daughters ' Peg, Penny, Phillipa and Phoenix. Notice anything about names? Its a good thing the youngest wasnt a boy - Jesper toyed with the idea of naming him Per-Simon.
Hes 36 years old, and about the most radical thing hes into now is his vitamin company, LiFizz. The vitamins are mixed with water and drunk, rather than taken solid.
In Europe, its pretty much the way to take vitamins, he said. I grew up taking then that way. So I was just amazed when I came over here and it wasnt around. Were doing very well.
Its a little bit different when you endorse a product and when you start your own company with a product, because you have a little more pride when its your own product its my personal company, so its very close to me.
Parnevik is a streaky putter ' sometimes hes world-class, other times just unworldly. He isnt afraid to try something new. Many times he putts with something that someone has just designed, even though it may not look like a traditional putter. Other times, he just picks up one thats been in the shop for years.
He has hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of putters.
The funny thing is that a few of the tournaments I have won, Ive picked the putter just sitting collecting dust in the garage somewhere. I look at it and I bring it to the tournament and I win, said Jesper.
Thats what I did at the Byron Nelson. The putter was just sitting in the back of a corner, and I just took it out before we went to the airplane and won the tournament. And, Im like a magnet to people who want to try different stuff. Everybody, it seems, has an invention they want me to try out. Some things actually are pretty good, and some are not very good at all.
He actually used four different putters in four days at the British Open a couple of years ago. Its a feel thing for me, said Parnevik. That could change day by day ' I dont know why. Its how it aims, how it sits when I set it down. Some putters can look really nice one day, and then I set it down the next day and it looks shut or open, and I dont know if someone is fooling around with my putter. Probably just me, I guess.
It was a confession that rings true somehow ' its probably just him. Just me, however, has done pretty well. Especially for a guy who wears pink pants.
The Social: G.O.A.T., after G.O.A.T., after G.O.A.T.
Tom Brady compares himself to Tiger Woods, who coincidentally is returning to the PGA Tour this week, Jordan Spieth hangs out with some decent company and kids these days ruffle some feathers with their friendships.
All that and more in this week's edition of The Social.
Well, it’s finally Farmers Insurance Open week and Woods has been spotted practicing for his official return to the PGA Tour on Thursday.
Some thought this day might never come after a 2017 filled with mostly downs for the 14-time major champ.
But as he has taught the golf world time and time again, you just can't count Tiger out.
Back on TOUR. pic.twitter.com/OPmjaXFo1l— PGA TOUR (@PGATOUR) January 23, 2018
So even as Jon Rahm attempts to overtake Dustin Johnson for No. 1 in the world this week at Torrey Pines, all eyes will be on one of the greatest we've ever seen do it, even if that guy is ranked No. 647 in the world.
Speaking of greatness …
There’s not many who can just offhandedly compare themselves to Tiger, but if anyone gets a pass, it’s Tom Brady.
The 40-year-old New England Patriots quarterback led his team back to the Super Bowl for the second straight year despite playing the AFC title game with a cut on his throwing hand.
When asked about it after the Patriots come-from-behind victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Brady answered, “I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that. It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament.”
Tom Brady, postgame, on wearing the wrap on his hand: “I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that. It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament.”— Ryan Lavner (@RyanLavnerGC) January 22, 2018
So there you have it. A 40-year-old Brady is winning AFC Championships with his C game. Good luck, Eagles; you’re going to need it.
Also, if for some reason you wanted an update on Justin Thomas' life, it's still awesome:
I was thinking we kick @JordanSpieth out and replace you with him... everybody wins! enjoyed yesterday man— Justin Thomas (@JustinThomas34) January 22, 2018
Yeah, that's last year's PGA Tour Player of the Year hanging with Cy Young winner Cory Kluber in a suite at the Patriots game and teasing us with a possible #SB2K18 cameo.
Curtis Strange likes his competitive golf straight up, hold the friendliness.
This, according to Curtis Strange.
The two-time U.S. Open champ took to Twitter during the CareerBuilder Challenge to vent his frustration regarding the constant chit-chat and friendliness between Rahm and Andrew Landry:
Watching Andrew Landry and Jon Rahm in playoff. Walking off tee talking to each other. Are you kidding me ? Talking at all. ?— Curtis Strange (@golf_strange) January 22, 2018
@JonRahmpga and Andrew Landry.Hopefully no offense taken on my comment yesterday. You guys are terrific, I’m a huge fan of all players today. Made a adverse comment on U guys talking during playoff.Not for me. A fan.— Curtis Strange (@golf_strange) January 23, 2018
Never went out of my way to disrupt. Having a chat wasn’t for me,my generation, or before me. Some inside baseball. Honesty.— Curtis Strange (@golf_strange) January 23, 2018
This, of course, makes sense in theory. But good luck watching golf – or really any sport – from here on out. Sure there will be a few old school guys who buck the trend here and there, but for the most part, it’s really hard to share a private jet/dinners/vacations/(insert awesome thing here) with someone, and then completely turn off the friendship coming down the stretch of a big tournament.
Damn millennials. They ruin everything.
By now you've all seen that poor Philadelphia Eagles fan who lost his battle with a subway station pillar (from multiple angles), so instead here is a video of a man attempting to stand on an egg. Bet you can't guess how that goes.
Seriously if you haven't seen the video of that Eagles fan, here's your last chance in this column. You'll be glad you did.
Jordan Spieth, Michael Phelps and Bryce Harper walk on to a golf course … there’s no punchline, that actually happened last week in Las Vegas.
Was the whole thing just a big advertisement for Spieth’s new Under Armour shoe? You bet.
But that doesn’t make the optics of three of the biggest superstar athletes on the planet teeing it up for a round any less awesome.
The trio has three major wins, five All Star Game appearances and 28 Olympic medals between them, and there they were over the weekend just fake laughing for the camera and driving around individual golf carts with their own personalized logos on them.
Matt Kuchar. Still good at golf. Still overly polite. This according to European Tour pro Eddie Pepperell who had the privilege of hitting on the range next to Kuuuuuch in Abu Dhabi last week.
Hit balls next to Kuchar yesterday and two very Matt Kuchar things happened; He didn’t miss a shot, and when he let out a fart he went, “oopsies.”— Eddie Pepperell (@PepperellEddie) January 20, 2018
That image is burned into your brain forever now, thanks Eddie. From now on when you think of Kuchar you're going to think of those Sketches ads and "oopsies."
Which, I suppose is better than a, "Did you get that?"
Blayne Barber's caddie, Cory Gilmer, collapsed and hit his head while at a restaurant at the Sony Open and has been mostly unconscious in the neurological intensive care unit ever since.
The outpouring of love and support from the golf community has been overwhelming on social media, and a GoFundMe page has been set up to help with the mounting medical costs for Gilmer and his family.
Check out the link below for more info or to donate to a worthy cause:
Many people have asked how to help Cory and his family during his time in Hawaii. We set up a GoFundMe page! Check it out and give! Thank you all for the prayers and support.https://t.co/4frdZN4vrQ— Blayne Barber™ (@BlayneBarberAU) January 22, 2018
Top-ranked amateur wins LAAC, earns Masters invite
Joaquin Niemann walked Augusta National Golf Club as a patron last year. He’ll be a competitor in 2018.
Niemann, the top-ranked amateur in the world, shot 8-under 63 Tuesday at Prince of Wales Country Club in his native Santiago, Chile, to win the Latin America Amateur Championship.
And with the title, both redemption and an invitation to the Masters Tournament.
Niemann finished runner-up in last year’s LAAC to fellow Chilean Toto Gana. He followed Gana around Augusta grounds, watching as his best friend played two rounds before missing the cut.
Niemann, who was going to turn professional had he not won this week, started the final round one back of Mexico’s Alvaro Ortiz. Niemann was sluggish from the start on Tuesday, but then drove the 313-yard, par-4 eighth and made the eagle putt. That sparked a run of five birdies over his next six holes.
Niemann was bogey-free in the final round and finished five shots clear of Ortiz, at 11 under.
Judges Panel, Host Announced for Wilson Golf's "Driver vs. Driver 2," Premiering This Fall on Golf Channel
‘Driver vs. Driver 2 Presented by Wilson Currently in Production; Sports Broadcaster Melanie Collins Returns to Host
Morning Drive: Driver vs. Driver 2 Judges Announced
Golf Channel and Wilson Golf announced today the panel of judges and host for the second season of Driver vs. Driver, the innovative television series that follows aspiring golf equipment designers as they compete for the opportunity to have their driver idea or concept transformed into the next great golf driver from Wilson. The show is currently in production and will premiere this fall.
Joining judge Tim Clarke, President of Wilson Golf, are two newcomers to the series: 9-time National Hockey League (NHL) All-Star and current NHL on NBC hockey analyst Jeremy Roenick – an avid golfer with a single digit handicap and a self-described golf equipment junkie; and PGA Professional, golf coach, equipment reviewer and social media influencer Rick Shiels.
“Golf is a big passion of mine, and personally I enjoy learning about new equipment and concepts,” said Roenick. “To be able to see this side of the business in how equipment is developed first-hand is fascinating. Being a part of the process in reviewing driver concepts and narrowing them down to an ultimate winning driver that will be sold across the country is a tremendous honor.”
“Jeremy, as an avid golfer, and Rick, as a coach, equipment reviewer and golf professional, bring incredible, real world insights and different perspectives to the show and this process,” said Clarke. “I’m excited to work alongside these two judges to push the boundaries of innovation and bring a next-generation driver to golfers around the world.”
Sports broadcaster Melanie Collins returns as the host of Driver vs. Driver 2. Currently a sideline reporter for CBS Sports’ college football and basketball coverage, Collins hosted the inaugural season in 2016 and formerly co-hosted Golf Channel’s competition series, Big Break.
Production for Driver vs. Driver 2 began in the fall of 2017 and will continue through the summer, including this week at the PGA Merchandise Show. The series is being produced by Golf Channel, whose portfolio of original productions include interview series Feherty hosted by Emmy-nominated sports personality David Feherty, high-quality instruction shows School of Golf, Golf Channel Academy and Playing Lessons and a slate of award-winning films.