New for the 2010 putter lineup

By Richard CurreyApril 19, 2010, 5:01 pm

The putter is the only club in the bag that you can say will be used every time you play golf. With the average player hitting more than 30 putts in a round, it is probably the most important club for your game.

With the weather getting better across the country, golf season is upon us and this year's putter lineup has a lot of new faces from familiar manufacturers.

Nike Method #1 ($249.99 MSRP)

Nike Method #1 putter
Nike Method
The Method first appeared on Tour last year and made a huge splash but was not available to the general public until Nike released their putter lineup.

The Method was the putter used by Stewart Cink at the British Open and Lucas Glover at the U.S. Open when they claimed their first majors. With five worldwide wins last season it was a successful year for the guys at Nike’s Oven.

The distinctive polymetal groove technology creates a faster forward roll after impact to create the kind of accuracy and consistency Tour professionals demand. While most traditional steel-faced putters start the ball with backspin that causes the ball to initially bounce a little higher, the new groove technology starts the ball spinning forward to minimize bounce and keep the putt on line.

Thoughts: The Nike Method is steps beyond what would be expected of Nike in the area of putters. The putter has a great feel, good weighting and gives good feedback to the player. 

Odyssey White Ice Mini T ($179.99 MSRP)

Putter alignment can be one of the hardest things for a new golfer to pickup and for an aging golfer to maintain. With a new head design with Hi-Def alignment lines this club has some of the best alignment tools that can be found.

That coupled with the connecting weighted alignment wings to increase consistency and control as well as the familiar White Hot insert; this putter can be a nice addition to anyone’s bag.

Odyssey White Ice and Backstryke putters
Odyssey White Ice Mini T(L) and Backstryke (R)

Thoughts: As expected from Odyssey, this is a well built putter that gives good feedback both through the feel of the club at impact as well as the visual alignment tools. Once you get accustomed to the look the putter can make improper alignment a thing of the past.

Odyssey Backstryke Blade ($199.99 MSRP)

Have a hard time telling if your putter face is square? Well, Odyssey has moved the shaft of its newest putter to the rear of the club to allow you to see the face of your club instead of the shaft of the putter. By doing so it also stabilizes the club for those with a forward press when putting by eliminating the extra loft added by over exaggerating the movement.

Thoughts: It’s off design with the shaft going into the heel of the clubs definitely gets looks out on the practice green. The putter weight is affected by this shift of the shaft as well. Even though the shaft is so far away from the face it does give good feedback and allow for good control of the putter head through the ball.

Titleist Scotty Cameron Studio Select Laguna ($299.99 MSRP)

Fan of the Newport line of putters from Scotty Cameron? Well this new putter from Titleist has some interesting improvements from the original. With adjustable weights on the sole of the putter, it allows you to be able to change the weights based on preference and head to shaft balancing if you wanted to change the shaft to a belly or long putter. The large circular weights also increase the size of the sweet spot for when you just can’t seem to hit it in the same place every time.

Scotty Cameron Studio Select Kombi-S and Laguna
Titleist Scotty Cameron Studio Select Kombi-S (L) and Laguna (R)
A slight change in the toe profile from the original helps to address people who get the toe up in the air when addressing the ball. With the changes made it allows for less of a chance of pushing the ball left often caused by this issue.

Thoughts: Holding true to the quality standard of the rest of the Scotty Cameron Studio Select line of putters this putter has great feel and good feedback. The new toe configuration and weighting system is great for the normal golfer who may not hit the sweet spot every time.

Titleist Scotty Cameron Studio Select Kombi-S Putter ($299.99 MSRP)

The Kombi is the first time an advanced mallet style putter has made it into the Studio Select series of the Scotty Cameron line. The T shaped sightline allows for good alignment with minimal distractions. The Kombi-S has a factory adjustable weight to change how the sole of the club is weighted per the player’s preferences (Not available in the mid- or long- versions).

Thoughts: At first it was off to look at any Studio Select putter that has an advanced style mallet , but after the initial shock it was a well thought out design without a lot of extra visuals going on to draw your eye away from the ball.

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After Further Review: Woods wisely keeping things in perspective

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 19, 2018, 3:17 am

Each week, takes a look back at the week in golf. Here's what's weighing on our writers' minds.

On Tiger Woods' career comeback ...

Tiger Woods seems to be the only one keeping his comeback in the proper perspective. Asked after his tie for fifth at Bay Hill whether he could ever have envisioned his game being in this shape heading into Augusta, he replied: “If you would have given me this opportunity in December and January, I would have taken it in a heartbeat.” He’s healthy. He’s been in contention. He’s had two realistic chances to win. There’s no box unchecked as he heads to the Masters, and no one, especially not Woods, could have seen that coming a few months ago. – Ryan Lavner

On Tiger carrying momentum into API, Masters ...

Expect Jordan Spieth to leave Austin with the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play trophy next week.

After all, Spieth is seemingly the only top-ranked player who has yet to lift some hardware in the early part of 2018. Dustin Johnson, Jon Rahm and Justin Thomas have all gotten it done, as have Jason Day, Phil Mickelson and most recently Rory McIlroy.

Throw in the sudden resurgence of Tiger Woods, and with two more weeks until the Masters there seem to be more azalea-laden storylines than ever before.

A Spieth victory in Austin would certainly add fuel to that fire, but even if he comes up short the 2015 champ will certainly be a focus of attention in a few short weeks when the golf world descends upon Magnolia Lane with no shortage of players able to point to a recent victory as proof that they’re in prime position to don a green jacket. – Will Gray

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Davies not giving up on win, HOF after close call

By Randall MellMarch 19, 2018, 3:06 am

PHOENIX – Laura Davies knows the odds are long now, but she won’t let go of that dream of making the LPGA Hall of Fame.

At 54, she was emboldened by her weekend run at the Bank of Hope Founders Cup. She tied for second, five shots behind Inbee Park.

“The more I get up there, I might have a chance of winning again,” Davies said. “I'm not saying I will ever win, but today was close. Maybe one day I can go closer.”

Davies is a World Golf Hall of Famer, but she has been sitting just outside the qualification standard needed to get into the LPGA Hall of Fame for a long time. She needs 27 points, but she has been stuck on 25 since her last victory in 2001. A regular tour title is worth one point, a major championship is worth two points.

Full-field scores from the Bank of Hope Founders Cup

Over her career, she has won 20 LPGA titles, four of them major championships. She was the tour’s Rolex Player of the Year in 1996. She probably would have locked up Hall of Fame status if she hadn’t been so loyal to the Ladies European Tour, where she won 45 titles.

Though Davies didn’t win Sunday in Phoenix, there was more than consolation in her run into contention.

“Now people might stop asking me when I'm going to retire,” she said.

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Davies impresses, but there's no catching Park

By Randall MellMarch 19, 2018, 2:40 am

PHOENIX – Inbee Park won the tournament.

Laura Davies won the day.

It was a fitting script for the Bank of Hope Founders Cup on Sunday, where nostalgia stirs the desert air in such a special way.

Two of the game’s all-time best, LPGA Hall of Famer Inbee Park and World Golf Hall of Famer Laura Davies, put on a show with the tour’s three living founders applauding them in the end.

Park and Davies made an event all about honoring the tour’s past while investing in its future something to savor in the moment. Founders Marilynn Smith, Shirley Spork and Marlene Hagge Vossler cheered them both.

For Park, there was meaningful affirmation in her 18th LPGA title.

In seven months away from the LPGA, healing up a bad back, Park confessed she wondered if she should retire. This was just her second start back. She won feeling no lingering effects from her injury.

“I was trying to figure out if I was still good enough to win,” Park said of her long break back home in South Korea. “This proved to me I can win and play some pain-free golf.”

At 54, Davies kept peeling away the years Sunday, one sweet swing after another. She did so after shaking some serious nerves hitting her first tee shot.

“It’s about as nervous as I’ve ever felt,” Davies said. “I swear I nearly shanked it.”

Davies has won 45 Ladies European Tour events and 20 LPGA titles, but she was almost 17 years removed from her last LPGA title. Still, she reached back to those times when she used to rule the game and chipped in for eagle at the second hole to steady herself.

“It calmed me down, and I really enjoyed the day,” Davies said.

With birdies at the ninth and 10th holes, Davies pulled from three shots down at day’s start to within one of Park, sending a buzz through all the fans who came out to root for the popular Englishwoman.

“People were loving it,” said Tanya Paterson, Davies’ caddie. “We kept hearing, `Laura, we love you.’ It was special for Laura, showing she can still compete.”

Full-field scores from the Bank of Hope Founders Cup

Davies relished giving all the young players today, who never saw how dominant she once was, some flashes from her great past.

“Yesterday, after I had that 63, a lot of the younger girls came up and said, `Oh, great playing today,”’ Davies said. “It was nice, I suppose, to have that. I still am a decent player, and I actually used to be really good at it. Maybe that did give them a glimpse into what it used to be like.”

She also relished showing certain fans something.

“Now, people might stop asking me when I'm going to retire,” she said.

Davies was the LPGA’s Rolex Player of the Year in 1996, when she won two of her four major championships. She was emboldened by the way she stood up to Sunday pressure again.

In the end, though, there was no catching Park, who continues to amaze with her ability to win coming back from long breaks after injuries.

Park, 29, comes back yet again looking like the player who reigned at world No. 1 for 92 weeks, won three consecutive major championships in 2013 and won the Olympic gold medal two years ago.

“The reason that I am competing and playing is because I want to win and because I want to contend in golf tournaments,” Park said.

After Davies and Marina Alex mounted runs to move within one shot, Park pulled away, closing ferociously. She made four birdies in a row starting at the 12th and won by five shots. Her famed putting stroke heated up, reminding today’s players how nobody can demoralize a field more with a flat stick.

“I just felt like nothing has dropped on the front nine,” Park said. “I was just thinking to myself, `They have to drop at some point.’ And they just started dropping, dropping, dropping.”

Yet again, Park showed her ability to win after long breaks.

In Rio de Janeiro two years ago, Park the Olympic gold medal in her first start back after missing two months because of a ligament injury in her left thumb. She took eight months off after Rio and came back to win the HSBC Women’s World Championship last year, in just her second start upon returning.

“I'm really happy to have a win early in the season,” Park said. “That just takes so much pressure off me.”

And puts it on the rest of the tour if she takes her best form to the year’s first major at the ANA Inspiration in two weeks.



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Rose: 'Never' has Rory putted as well as Bay Hill

By Ryan LavnerMarch 19, 2018, 1:20 am

ORLANDO, Fla. – Justin Rose didn’t need to ponder the question for very long.

The last time Rory McIlroy putted that well was, well …?

“Never,” Rose said with a chuckle. “Ryder Cup? He always makes it look easy when he’s playing well.”

And the Englishman did well just to try and keep pace.

After playing his first six holes in 4 over par, Rose battled not just to make the cut but to contend. He closed with consecutive rounds of 67, finishing in solo third, four shots back of McIlroy at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.

Full-field scores from the Arnold Palmer Invitational

Arnold Palmer Invitational: Articles, photos and videos

Rose said this weekend was the best he’s struck the ball all year. He just didn’t do enough to overtake McIlroy, who finished the week ranked first in strokes gained-putting and closed with a bogey-free 64.

“Rory just played incredible golf, and it’s great to see world-class players do that,” Rose said. “It’s not great to see him make putts because he was making them against me, but when he is, he’s incredibly hard to beat. So it was fun to watch him play.”