Golf Talk Live - Jack Nicklaus Transcript Segment 4

By Golf Channel DigitalApril 5, 1999, 4:00 pm
(VIDEO FROM 1986 MASTERS)
JIM NANTZ, ANNOUNCER
TOM WEISKOPF, WHAT IS GOING THROUGH JACK'S MIND RIGHT NOW. HE HAS NOT EXPERIENCED THIS KIND OF A STREAK IN A LONG TIME.

TOM WEISKOPF
IF I KNEW THE WAY HE THOUGHT, I WOULD HAVE WON THIS TOURNAMENT. (LAUGH)

PETER KESSLER
SO WHAT WERE YOU THINKING ALL THOSE YEARS THAT NOBODY ELSE SUPPOSEDLY WAS?

JACK NICKLAUS
GOOD QUESTION. I DON'T KNOW. YOU KNOW, I DON'T KNOW WHAT THEY WERE THINKING. ALL I WAS THINKING ABOUT WAS WHAT I WAS DOING. AND UH, YOU KNOW,

I JUST KEPT MY MIND ON WHAT I WAS DOING AND I ALWAYS FELT LIKE UH .UH.

YOU KNOW, I ALWAYS PLAYED UH . UH, PEOPLE SAY I DIDN'T AGGRESSIVE GOLF. I WAS VERY CONSERVATIVE. AND I THINK THERE'S A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN SMART GOLF AND DUMB GOLF.

AND DUMB GOLF TO ME IS BEING AGGRESSIVE WHEN YOU DON'T HAVE A CHANCE TO . TO BE AGGRESSIVE AND THE PENALTY'S TOO GREAT. SMART GOLF IS WHEN YOU TAKE YOUR CHANCES WHEN IT DOESN'T LOOK LIKE YOU HAVE TO TAKE A CHANCE.

IT JUST HAPPENS. IN OTHER WORDS, LIKE THE SHOT THERE AT 16 TAKING IT INTO THE HOLE. AND, YOU KNOW, THAT'S FAIRLY AGGRESSIVE TO TAKE IT RIGHT DEAD AT THE HOLE. BUT THE ONLY THING IS ALL YOU HAVE TO REALLY DO THERE IS TO HIT IT PAST THE BUNKER

AND THE BALL'S GONNA HIT THE BANK AND COME BACK DOWN TO THE HOLE. SO IT'S NOT A VERY HARD SHOT. BUT UH . THE UH .UH .

AND THAT'S JUST THE WAY I PLAYED. I PLAYED WITHIN MYSELF AND WHAT I KNEW I THOUGHT I COULD DO. AND THAT'S ALL I WAS THINKING.

PETER KESSLER
CONSIDERING THAT YOU HAD PLAYED VERY 'UN-NICKLAUS-LIKE' GOLF GOING INTO THAT TOURNAMENT, THE '86 MASTERS, AFTER A NOT SO THRILLING 1985, WHAT DID YOU ACCOUNT, WHAT DO YOU ATTRIBUTE FOR THE TURNAROUND THAT YOU WERE PLAYING YOUR KIND OF GOLF AGAIN.

JACK NICKLAUS
OH, PETER, I DON'T KNOW. I THINK THAT JUST HAPPENED TO BE A WEEK I WAS UH . IN '85 UH . (CHUCKLE) I GOT SO - I GOT ON A DIET AND GOT SO SKINNY I COULD HARDLY HIT A . I MEAN, I PROBABLY . MY CLOTHES JUST FELL OFF ME.

AND I HAD NO STRENGTH AT ALL. I REMEMBER THE U.S. OPEN .

PETER KESSLER
BUT YOU LOOKED GOOD.

JACK NICKLAUS
OH YEAH, LOOKED GREAT AND .BUT . I COULD HIT IT, I COULD HIT IT, ALMOST HIT IT OUT OF MY SHADOW.

AND UH, THEN '86 I STARTED OUT THE YEAR AND ACTUALLY UH . UH, HIT THE BALL PRETTY GOOD EARLY IN THE YEAR BUT COULDN'T MAKE A PUTT. AND UH,

THEN I THINK THAT AUGUSTA I STARTED UH . OR NO, IT WAS THE OTHER WAY AROUND, MAYBE I WASN'T HITTING THE BALL VERY WELL . AND CAN - WAS PUTTING, THEN I GOT TO AUGUSTA, AND I STARTED HITTING THE BALL BETTER AND THEN I FINALLY STARTED PUTTING.

BUT I GOT -- MY PUTTING GOT BETTER EVERY DAY. AND MY HITTING THE BALL GOT BETTER EVERY DAY. AND, YOU KNOW, FINALLY I JUST GOT INTO A POSITION WHERE, UH, I DID SOMETHING WHEN I HOLED THE PUTT AT 9, FOLLOWED UP WITH A PUTT AT 10,

AND A PUTT AT 11. AND WHAT HAPPENED THE REST OF THE YEAR AND WHAT HAPPENED IN '85 DIDN'T MAKE ANY DIFFERENCE. I WAS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE MASTERS. I HAD A CHANCE TO WIN. AND, YOU KNOW, YOU DON'T REMEMBER ALL THAT OTHER STUFF. YOU JUST GO PLAY WHAT YOU'RE DOING.

PETER KESSLER
PEOPLE FORGET, I THINK, SOMETIMES THAT YOU WEREN'T A HUNDRED SHOTS BACK WITH ONE ROUND TO GO NEEDING TO SHOOT 53. YOU WERE JUST 4 SHOTS BACK AND RIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THAT THING.

JACK NICKLAUS
YEAH, IT WAS - IT'S NOT THAT I WAS ONLY 4 SHOTS BACK, THERE JUST WEREN'T THAT MANY PLAYERS AHEAD OF ME.

PETER KESSLER
THAT'S RIGHT

JACK NICKLAUS
WHAT WAS IT, HALF A DOZEN PLAYERS AHEAD OF ME OR SOMETHING. I DON'T . WHATEVER THERE WAS. BUT UH,

IT REALLY WASN'T THAT I HAD TO SHOOT A GREAT ROU - I HAD TO SHOOT A GREAT ROUND. BUT UH, IT WAS .

I JUST HAD TO GO DO IT. YOU KNOW . YOU KNOW, YOU JUST SAY, 'YEAH, OKAY. WELL I CAN SHOOT 65 AND WIN'. BUT YOU GOTTA GO SHOOT THE 65.

PETER KESSLER
YOU HAD BEEN USED TO OVER YOUR CAREER THAT WHEN YOUR NAME WOULD WORK ITS WAY UP TO THE TOP OF THE LEADERBOARD THAT THAT WOULD SHAKE A LOT OF GUYS AROUND YOUR NAME.

WHAT WAS YOUR REACTION, IF YOU HAD ONE AT ALL OR IT EVEN OCCURRED TO YOU AT THE TIME, THERE THEY GO THEY'RE FALLING OFF THE LEADERBOARD AGAIN BECAUSE MY NAME'S AT THE TOP.

JACK NICKLAUS
NO, I NEVER THOUGHT THAT. THEY . THEY HAVEN'T FALLEN OFF THE LEADERBOARD WITH MY NAME AT THE TOP SINCE 1980. (LAUGH)

AND CERTAINLY THEY WEREN'T FALLING OFF IN '86 . NOT BECAUSE MY NAME WAS UP THERE. BUT UH, THEY STARTED FALLING OFF THE LEADERBOARD BECAUSE IT WAS THE MASTERS AND YOU . AND

TO WIN THE MASTERS IS SOMETHING THAT THE OTHER PEOPLE WANTED TO DO TOO. AND I, I GUESS THAT MAYBE I HAD DONE IT BEFORE AND I KNEW HOW TO GET IT DONE.

PETER KESSLER
WE'VE GOT A YOUNG MAN ON THE PHONE WHO WAS BORN IN THE YEAR THAT YOU WON YOUR MOST RECENT MASTERS,

JACK NICKLAUS
OH, OKAY.

PETER KESSLER
14 YEAR OLD, JEFFREY. HOW ARE YOU SIR?

JEFFREY, CALLER FROM FLORIDA
YEAH, HI. UM, FIRST OF ALL, I'D LIKE TO SAY IT'S A PLEASURE TO TALK TO YOU MR. NICKLAUS.

JACK NICKLAUS
AND JEFFREY.

JEFFREY, CALLER FROM FLORIDA
AND I'D UH . I'D LIKE TO ASK YOU UH WHO YOU THINK IS THE - WHO YOU PICK FOR THIS YEAR'S MASTERS?

JACK NICKLAUS
WELL JEFFREY, IF I KNEW THE ANSWER TO THAT QUESTION, I WOULD BE RICH NEXT WEEK. UH, THERE ARE SO MANY GOOD PLAYERS OUT THERE TODAY. UH, I MEAN, I THINK IF ANYBODY UH WOULDN'T PICK BETWEEN, UH,

DAVID DUVAL AND TIGER WOODS, I THINK UH . IF YOU . YOU KNOW, THE 2 OF THEM ARE OBVIOUSLY HAVE GOT TO BE THE PLAYERS TO BEAT. BUT OBVIOUSLY, I THINK THE WAY UH . UH, DAVID'S PLAYING RIGHT NOW IT'S FANTASTIC.

HE UH . I HAD THE PLEASURE OF HAVING BOTH OF THOSE YOUNG MEN ON MY UH . UH, PRESIDENTS CUP TEAM LAST UH, LAST DECEMBER. UH, THEY UH . YOU KNOW, THEY'RE BOTH . THEY'RE BOTH VERY POSITIVE. THEY'RE BOTH GREAT PLAYERS. AND . AND ANY OF THOSE OTHER PLAYERS ON THAT TEAM WILL HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO WIN. I MEAN,

THERE'S SO MANY GOOD PLAYERS NOW THAT UH . UH, TO TRY TO PICK ONE OUT OF THE, OUT OF THE PACK IS PRETTY DIFFICULT.

UNKNOWN SPECTATOR
GET IN!

CROWD
YEAH! (APPLAUSE)

PETER KESSLER
THAT WASN'T BAD EITHER. THAT WAS THE PUTT FOR THE 59.

JACK NICKLAUS
YEAH, AS A MATTER OF FACT, I HAPPENED TO SEE THAT ON TELEVISION. I DON'T WATCH A LOT OF GOLF, PETER. BUT I DID HAPPEN TO SEE THAT. I MEAN, I TURN ON THE TELEVISION AND I , AND I SAID, 'HUH?'

YOU KNOW, I MEAN, WHAT WAS IT, MINUS 13 OR SOMETHING ON THE -- I SAID, 'NO, NO. COME ON, THAT'S GOTTA BE A MISPRINT.' SO I'VE GOTTA JUST SEE JUST A LITTLE BIT MORE TO SEE IF THAT'S NOT A MISPRINT OR WHATEVER IT WAS.

BUT UH, THAT WAS SOME ROUND.

PETER KESSLER
AND HOW MANY GOLF BOOKS HAVE YOU READ?

JACK NICKLAUS
PETER, OTHER THAN EDITING MY OWN BOOKS, I'VE NEVER READ A GOLF BOOK.

PETER KESSLER
WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK. AS WE LEAVE YOU FOR JUST A MOMENT, LET'S TAKE A LOOK AT JACK'S RECORD AT THE MASTERS FROM 1962, THE YEAR THAT HE TURNED PROFESSIONAL, THROUGH '86, HIS MOST RECENT VICTORY AT AUGUSTA NATIONAL.

25 APPEARANCES, 6 WINS, 4 TIMES RUNNER-UP, 15 TOP-5'S, AND 18 TOP-10'S.

DON'T GO AWAY.

GRAPHIC SHOWN:
MASTERS PERFORMANCES 1962 - 86
EVENTS: 25
WINS: 6
RUNNER-UP: 4
TOP-5'S: 15
TOP-10'S: 18 )

(BREAK)

NEXT SEGMENT
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Ortiz takes Web.com Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:19 am

Former Web.com Tour Player of the Year Carlos Ortiz shot a bogey-free, 4-under-par 68 Monday to take the clubhouse lead in The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.

Four other players - Lee McCoy, Brandon Matthews, Sung Jae Im and Mark Anderson - were still on the course and tied with Ortiz at 6-under 210 when third-round play was suspended by darkness at 5:32 p.m. local time. It is scheduled to resume at 7:15 a.m. Tuesday.

Ortiz, a 26-year-old from Guadalajara, Mexico, is in search of his fourth Web.com Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Web.com Tour Player of the Year.

McCoy, a 23-year-old from Dunedin, Fla., is looking to become the first player to earn medalist honors at Q-School and then win the opening event of the season.

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Randall's Rant: Can we please have some rivalries?

By Randall MellJanuary 16, 2018, 12:00 am

Memo to the golf gods:

If you haven’t finalized the fates of today’s stars for the new year, could we get you to deliver what the game has lacked for so long?

Can we get a real, honest-to-goodness rivalry?

It’s been more than two decades since the sport has been witness to one.

With world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and former world No. 1 Rory McIlroy at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship this week, an early-season showdown would percolate hope that this year might be all about rivalries.

It seems as if the stars are finally aligned to make up for our long drought of rivalries, of the recurring clashes you have so sparingly granted through the game’s history.

We’re blessed in a new era of plenty, with so many young stars blossoming, and with Tiger Woods offering hope he may be poised for a comeback. With Johnson, McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler among today’s dynamic cast, the possibility these titans will time their runs together on the back nine of Sundays in majors excites.

We haven’t seen a real rivalry since Greg Norman and Nick Faldo sparred in the late '80s and early '90s.

Woods vs. Phil Mickelson didn’t really count. While Lefty will be remembered for carving out a Hall of Fame career in the Tiger era, with 33 victories, 16 of them with Tiger in the field, five of them major championships, we get that Tiger had no rival, not in the most historic sense.


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Phil never reached No. 1, was never named PGA Tour Player of the Year, never won a money title and never dueled with Woods on Sunday on the back nine of a major with the title on the line.  Still, it doesn’t diminish his standing as the best player not named Tiger Woods over the last 20 years. It’s a feat so noteworthy it makes him one of the game’s all-time greats.

We’ve been waiting for an honest-to-goodness rivalry since Faldo and Norman took turns ruling at world No. 1 and dueling in big events, including the back nine of multiple majors. 

In the '70s, we had Nicklaus-Watson. In the '60s, it was Nicklaus-Palmer. In the '40s and '50s, it was Hogan, Snead and Nelson in a triumvirate mix, and in the '20s and '30s we had Hagen and Sarazen.

While dominance is the magic ingredient that can break a sport out of its niche, a dynamic rivalry is the next best elixir.

Dustin Johnson looks capable of dominating today’s game, but there’s so much proven major championship talent on his heels. It’s hard to imagine him consistently fending off all these challengers, but it’s the fending that would captivate us.

Johnson vs. McIlroy would be a fireworks show. So would Johnson vs. Thomas, or Thomas vs. Day or McIlroy vs. Rahm or Fowler vs. Koepka ... or any of those combinations.

Spieth is a wild card that intrigues.

While he’s not a short hitter, he isn’t the power player these other guys are, but his iron game, short game, putter and moxie combine to make him the most compelling challenger of all. His resolve, resilience and resourcefulness in the final round of his British Open victory at Royal Birkdale make him the most interesting amalgam of skill since Lee Trevino.

Woods vs. any of them? Well, if we get that, we promise never to ask for anything more.

So, if that cosmic calendar up there isn’t filled, how about it? How about a year of rivalries to remember?

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McIlroy: 2018 may be my busiest season ever

By Will GrayJanuary 15, 2018, 6:28 pm

With his return to competition just days away, Rory McIlroy believes that the 2018 season may be the most action packed of his pro career.

The 28-year-old has not teed it up since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in early October, a hiatus he will end at this week's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. It will be the start of a busy spring for the Ulsterman, who will also play next week in Dubai before a run of six PGA Tour events leading up to the Masters.

Speaking to the U.K.'s Telegraph, McIlroy confirmed that he will also make a return trip to the British Masters in October and plans to remain busy over the next 12 months.

"I might play more times this year than any before. I played 28 times in 2008 and I'm on track to beat that," McIlroy said. "I could get to 30 (events), depending on where I'm placed in the Race to Dubai. But I'll see."

McIlroy's ambitious plan comes in the wake of a frustrating 2017 campaign, when he injured his ribs in his first start and twice missed chunks of time in an effort to recover. He failed to win a worldwide event and finished the year ranked outside the top 10, both of which had not happened since 2008.

But having had more than three months to get his body and swing in shape, McIlroy is optimistic heading into the first of what he hopes will be eight starts in the 12 weeks before he drives down Magnolia Lane.

"I've worked hard on my short game and I'm probably feeling better with the putter than I ever have," McIlroy said. "I've had a lot of time to concentrate on everything and it all feels very good and a long way down the road."

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What's in the Bag: Sony Open winner Kizzire

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 15, 2018, 6:05 pm

Patton Kizzire earned his second PGA Tour victory by winning a six-hole playoff at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Take a look inside his bag.

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (10.5 degrees), with Fujikura Atmos Black 6 X shaft

Fairway Wood: Titleist 917F2 (16.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Blue 95 TX shaft

Hybrid: Titleist 913H (19 degrees), with UST Mamiya AXIV Core 100 Hybrid shaft

Irons: Titleist 718 T-MB (4), 718 CB (5-6), 718 MB (7-9), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Wedges: Titleist SM7 prototype (47, 52, 56, 60 degrees), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Putter: Scotty Cameron GoLo Tour prototype

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x