Ultimate Match Play: The final match

By Randall MellFebruary 12, 2013, 11:00 am

Jack vs. Tiger.

You wanted it, you got it.

By popular demand, universes collide this week in the finals of the Ultimate Match Play Championship.

GolfChannel.com’s showdown of the 16 best players in history is down to Nicklaus vs. Woods. (Click for: Ultimate Match Play overview | Player bios | GolfChannel.com's Bracket Challenge)

As epic clashes go, Jack vs. Tiger might be more electric in nature than Thomas Edison vs. Nikola Tesla, more high-powered than AC vs. DC, Edison’s direct current vs. Tesla’s alternating current.

The Golden Bear vs. Tiger is fantasy golf at its high-voltage best, and now it’s up to you to decide who wins this clash. Your votes this week will decide who prevails in the epic final at Pebble Beach.

So far, you’ve liked Nicklaus and Woods in routs through their first three matches.

More than 10,000 votes were cast in the semifinals alone.

Nicklaus easily eliminated Bobby Jones in one semifinal with 74.9 percent of the vote. The Golden Bear knocked out Phil Mickelson in the first round with 93 percent of the vote and eliminated Gary Player in the quarterfinals with another 93 percent pull.

Woods beat Hogan in the other semifinal with 64.5 percent of the vote. Woods took care of Seve Ballesteros in the first round with 79 percent of the vote and eliminated Tom Watson in the quarterfinals with another 79 percent pull.

Jack vs. Tiger.

If bookies were laying odds, it’s close to even money.

Those who believe Nicklaus is the best who ever lived point to his 18 major championship titles as all the evidence that matters. Majors are the true measure of greatness, and Nicklaus didn’t just win more than anyone who has ever played the game, he contended more than anyone. He was second 19 times in majors. The fact that Nicklaus finished first or second in 37 majors astounds.

Those who believe Tiger is the best who ever lived point to dominance the likes of which the game has never seen. They point to his unprecedented four-consecutive professional major championship triumphs over the 2000 and 2001 seasons, to his record 15-shot rout at the U.S. Open at Pebble Beach in 2000, his record 12-shot victory at the Masters in 1997, and his masterful eight-shot victory at St. Andrews in the British Open in 2000.

Tiger vs. Jack.

At their best, both Woods and Nicklaus overpowered courses, but Nicklaus gets the edge as the better driver. Nicklaus found the short grass more often than Woods.

At their best, they’re both stellar iron players, but Nicklaus was the better overall ball striker. Nicklaus had to be. He didn’t have the same magic in his short game that Woods has at his best. Nicklaus couldn’t erase as many mistakes as Woods can at his best.

As putters, it’s a tossup. Nicklaus and Woods are the two best clutch putters the game has ever seen. With a championship on the line, nobody has ever been better.

Nicklaus and Woods also had intangible advantages in equal doses.

At their best, they intimidated without trying. When their names hit a leaderboard, foes knew it.

“As you looked at Jack Nicklaus at the first tee, you knew that he knew that you knew he was going to beat you that day,” Tom Weiskopf famously said.

The same deal applied to Woods at his best.

In match play, Woods has proved so formidable, winning three consecutive U.S. Junior Amateurs and three consecutive U.S. Amateurs and winning the PGA Tour’s Accenture Match Play Championship three times. Nicklaus won the U.S. Amateur in ’59 and ’61, the World Match Play in ’70 and the U.S. Match Play Championship in ‘72.

Nicklaus and Woods both have good feelings about Pebble Beach, too. Nicklaus won four times as a professional there, including the ’72 U.S. Open. His ’61 U.S. Amateur title came at Pebble Beach. Woods has won twice at Pebble Beach as a professional, winning that 15-shot runaway in the 2000 U.S. Open and coming from seven shots down on the back nine in the final round to win the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am that same year.

Jack vs. Tiger.

Who wins golf’s ultimate showdown?

You decide.

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Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 11:27 pm

Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.

The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.

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Rose leads Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose completed the final two holes of his second round early Saturday for a 3-under 69 and a one-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters.

Rose, who had a first-round 62, was among a quarter of the field forced off the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course after weather delays on Friday.

The Englishman, who bogeyed his last hole, had a two-round total of 13-under 131.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat, who completed his 64 on Friday, was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters. He has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

President at the Presidents Cup

Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

Cart on the green

Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

Trump golf properties


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers

Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm