PGA GR running diary Rd. 2: Major rain, major pain

By Jason CrookAugust 9, 2014, 12:35 am

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – Some days you just know it just isn't your day. (Like when you use "just" twice in a 10-word opening sentence.) Some days you know the night before. And sometimes you know when you check the weather for the first major championship you are asssigned to cover, and the forecast calls for 100 percentchance of  rain. If you tuned in to the PGA Championship on Thursday or were (un)lucky enough to slosh your way through it on site, there's a good chance you know which option I am referring to.

Friday

8:15 a.m. ET – Alarm clock goes off. This is the latest I’ve woken up on this trip, it feels glorious. Not really, but I’m out of material about waking up early, so I'm just gonna get out of bed. It hurts to use my brain at this time anyway.

8:26 – Look out the window of my V.I.P Grill Room suite. I see a wet parking lot and a highway full of traffic. If it was my tee time, I would get back in bed. I wish it was my tee time.

9:00 – Depart for Valhalla.

9:45 – Arrive at Valhalla; it’s still raining.

10:29 – Decide to get a taste of my first major in the rain, and head out on the course.

10:32 – Find a group, not sure who, because below is my current view. You know when I said yesterday how watching Tiger wasn’t any fun because you couldn’t see anything? (Of course you do, you definitely read it.) This is similar, except umbrellas make watching golf even less enjoyable than the backs of people heads. I know, hard to believe.

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11:02 – Happen upon Kevin Na’s group. He’s slowly looking around uncomfortably into the crowd, like he's trying to find someone. I wave at him, maybe he's a fan. He is not.

11:05 – Decides he’s going to the bathroom, ducks under the rope and heads to find one. The crowd swarms. No one notices. Not sure when he got back, I got tired of waiting around and left. Pretty sure the rest of his group wishes they could’ve come with me.

11:59 – If I had to give the vibe of this tournament a label right now, that label would be “miserable.” If you have never been to a golf tournament in the rain, this is the best way I can describe it: It’s a lot like going on a Slip ‘n Slide, except you’re not wearing a bathing suit, there's 10,000 other people on it and none of them are smiling, it never ends and the Slip 'n Slide is actually riding you.

12:30 p.m. ET – Had enough of this, heading in to the media center.

1:45 – Make my way back out to the course. Tiger’s on the range. People still hate life but dammit, they aren't going to let that stand in the way of them watching Tiger Woods warm up. In case you don't believe me, I've provided a nice split shot of the range before and after Tiger Woods arrived.

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2:17 – The rain has stopped. Standing in the rough between Nos. 1 and 9. A ball lands about 10 feet from me. No idea where it came from. The gallery swarms.

2:22 – Adam Scott comes sauntering by -  apparently it's his ball. He looks perplexed with his ball in a tight spot but a gallery member assures him “everything is going to be  all right!”

2:24 – With some newfound confidence, he hits his shot from the rough. Everything is all right. How did that guy know?

2:58 – Walk past Santa Claus. He's undercover but I know jolly old  St. Nick when I see him. Note to any big celebrity, especially one as recognizable as Kris Kringle: if you’re going to wear a disguise out in public, a clear poncho is probably not going to do the trick. He was even wearing red underneath. Only thing missing were the reindeer. All that said, I didn't blow his cover. Kept it on the down low.

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3:33 – Notice the mood picking up around the course. The big names are out, the sun keeps making brief cameos, but most importantly - the beer is flowing. In my extensive Grill Room training I’ve been taught that beer equals good.

3:54 – See a 50ish-year-old man trying the spit trick from the Adam Sandler classic, “Big Daddy.” See what I mean about beer? Note: It did not touch the ground.

4:17 – On my way back to the media center I come to a crossing that used to be made of rocks and dirt. Today it looks like a Hot Brown after your third bite. If you don't get that joke then you have some Grill Room reading to catch up on. I'll leave you to it.

Tune in tomorrow for more of Grill Room's exclusive PGA Championship coverage. Click here for a link to today's gallery, and check out yesterday's running diary here.

Rose (62) sets blistering pace in Indonesia

By Associated PressDecember 14, 2017, 3:06 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia – Justin Rose shot a 10-under 62 Thursday to take a two-stroke lead after the first round of the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, starting on the back nine at Royale Jakarta Golf Club, had five birdies to go out in 31, then birdied four of five holes midway through his final nine and another birdie on his last hole in the $750,000 tournament.


Full-field scores from the Indonesian Masters


Gunn Charoenkul (64) was in second place and Kim Giwhan and Phachara Khongwatmai (both 65) were tied for third.

Brandt Snedeker shot 72. Ranked 51st in the world, the American is aiming for a strong finish in Jakarta to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

Getty Images

LaCava: Woods wouldn't talk after H.O.R.S.E. match

By Will GrayDecember 14, 2017, 2:27 pm

The competitive streak within Tiger Woods knows no bounds - even on the basketball court, according to caddie Joe LaCava.

LaCava has been on Woods' bag since 2011, and he recently shared a story on "Inside the Ropes" on Sirius/XM PGA Tour Radio about a clash between the two men over a seemingly friendly game of H.O.R.S.E. Actually, it turned into nine straight games (and nine straight wins) for LaCava, who exploited a weakness in Woods' on-court strategy while leaning on a mid-length jumper of his own:

"The thing with him was if I missed a shot, which I missed plenty of shots, but if I missed the shot he'd go back down to the 3 (point line) because he liked to make the 3," LaCava said. "But it's harder obviously to make a 3, and I'd go right back to the baseline 12-footer, and he couldn't make it."

It's a short list of people who have beaten Woods nine times in any athletic pursuit, let alone in a row. But for LaCava, the fallout from his afternoon of on-court dominance was less than subtle.

"He did not talk to me the rest of the day," LaCava explained. "I didn't even get the old text, 'Dinner is ready,' because I stay across at the beach house. I didn't even get that text that night. I had to get take-out. He didn't announce he wasn't (talking), he just did it. I'm telling you, nine games in a row. Like I said, he's so competitive, even at something like that."

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 3, Tiger Woods

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 14, 2017, 12:45 pm

After returning to competition at the Hero World Challenge in December 2016, Woods started the new year with an ambitious slate of tournament starts as he eyed his first full season since 2013. But he made it only three rounds, looking rusty en route to a missed cut at Torrey Pines before withdrawing abruptly in Dubai.

The “spasms” that led to that withdrawal turned out to be something far more serious, as Woods underwent his fourth and most invasive back surgery in April, a lumbar fusion. It brought with it an extensive rehabilitation, and at the Presidents Cup in September Woods humored the prospect that he might never again play competitive golf.

At Liberty National he also faced some scrutiny for an off-course incident from months prior. In May he was arrested for suspicion of DUI, an incident that produced a startling roadside video of an intoxicated Woods struggling to follow instructions from the arresting officer after driving erratically.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


While he was not drinking at the time, Woods was found to have a mix of several prescription medications in his system, including multiple painkillers. He checked himself into a private drug treatment program in July to address his dependency issues, and in October he pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of reckless driving.

But the incident was barely a memory when Woods again made a return to competition in the Bahamas at the tournament he hosts. This time around he exceeded nearly every expectation, twice shooting 4-under 68 while tying for ninth among the 18-man field. Having re-tooled his swing following fusion surgery, Woods appeared relaxed, happy and healthy while briefly taking the lead during the tournament’s second round.

What lies ahead for Woods in 2018 remains uncertain, as the stop-and-start nature of this past season serves as a cautionary tale. But after a harrowing arrest and another serious surgery, he seems once again focused on his game, intent on chasing down a new crop of elite talent, some of whom are barely more than half his age.

Woods' initial comeback short-lived, leads to another back surgery

Article: Woods undergoes "successful" fourth back surgery

Article: Woods (back spasm) withdraws from Dubai

Article: Players disappointed Woods withdraws from Dubai

Really, again: Tiger undergoes fourth back surgery

Begay on Tiger: Future is 'extremely uncertain'


Woods arrested for DUI, enters diversion program after getting "professional help"

Article: Woods arrested for DUI in May

Article: Police say Woods had 5 drugs in system when arrested

Article: DUI affidavit states Tiger asleep in parked car

Dashcam video released of Tiger's DUI arrest

Begay, Rolfing: Tiger's arrest needs to be wakeup call

Photos: Tiger Woods' car during DUI arrest

Tiger Woods at his 2017 DUI court hearing.

Photos: Tiger Woods in court for DUI hearing

Article: Tiger gets 'professional help' for prescription meds

Tiger Woods at his 2017 DUI court hearing.

Article: Woods pleads in court guilty to reckless driving


Woods goes from unsure of his pro golf future to resuming full golf activities

Article: Doctor clears Woods for full golf activity six months after back surgery

Article: Tiger doesn't know what future holds

Article: Woods back to making full swings

Woods admits he might never return to competition

Making progress: Breaking down Tiger's driver swing


Woods returns to competition for first time since February at Hero World Challenge

Article: Hero comeback a success for healthy Woods

Article: Woods discusses his back: 'No issues at all, none'

Tiger Tracker: Woods finished T-9 in return to competition

Chamblee: 'I was wrong' about some of my Woods skepticism

Tiger, if you were hurting, would you tell us? 'Yeah, I'd tell you'


Woods out and about in 2017

Article: Video, images of Tiger's round with Trump

Article: Woods posts photo as 'Mac Daddy Santa'

Article: Tiger at U.S. Open sitting in Nadal's box

Article: Shirtless Tiger holds up a massive lobster

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 14, 2017, 12:30 pm