Master(s) of His Domain?:
Last July, Andres Romero had already expedia-dot-com-ed his trip to Magnolia Lane after notching a third-place finish at Carnoustie. So the golden ticket the Argentine received in the magical city of New Orleans last weekend granting him access to Billy Payne and the Azalea Factory for his maiden PGA TOUR victory was, well, meaningless. However, what if it hadnt been? If only those primo passes could be transferable. For instance, given to one of the two 2008 winners on the PGA TOUR who didnt get an invite but perhaps deserved one given their seasons performances so far. Yes, Im talking about Brian Gay and Greg Kraft, who captured those opposite PGA TOUR events in Mexico and Puerto Rico. Hey, no offense to our 2005 U.S. Open Champion -- and thereby an owner of a 5-year Masters exemption -- Michael Campbell, who has never made a cut at Augusta National in six attempts. But I think Gay or Kraft would have made a lot more out of their starts at The Masters than the New Zealander who has only teed it up twice this year ' missing the cut both times on the European Tour. (Todd Hamilton could not be reached for comment.)
Pretty Young Thing:
Michelle Wie has a boyfriend! OMG! And hes so dreamy! Yes, but will he have more success on the professional level than his girlfriend? Perhaps not. Stanford hoops star Robin Lopez is a 7-foot center who may have more uh, tremendous upside, as a boyfriend than a pro athlete. Robin and his Twin Tower brother Brook are sensitive, wholesome boys who enjoy everything Disney and own every Michael Jackson album ever made (I want to love you, P.Y.T.!) And both are foregoing their junior years to leave the amateur ranks for the big bucks and endorsement deals (this sounds familiar, Michelle). However, Brook is further along in his skills as he is projected to go in the top 10, while Robin may not get taken until the second round. The NBA Draft is June 26th. Interestingly, the U.S. Women's Open week at Interlachen begins June 26th. I wonder if Robin will be bringing a date to Madison Square Garden.
On Another (Musical) Note:
I thought it was over when Roy Hibbert and his Hoyas were ousted from the tournament. No longer would I be singing out loud about the Georgetown big fella, I said a hip hop the hibbie hibba Hibbert, you dont stop the rock it, to the bang bang boogie No? Im the only one? Yeah, well, Roy Hibbert is now forever synonymous with Sugar Hill Gangs Rappers Delight in my crazy musical world. Well, this weekend promises to hold more of the same kind of ditty doozies. Get ready for repeated renditions of Sasha Kaun, let me rock ya, let me rock ya Sasha Kaun, from all your bar friends and maybe some hip sportscasters. What is it with these college hoop centers? Still, those tunes are considerably less annoying than what Ive been belting out (read: butchering) around the newsroom for over five years now ' much to the dismay of my co-workers, Dont cry for me Arjun Atwaaaaaaaal! The truth is, I never left yoooooou. Yep.
Does This Suit Make Me Look Fat?
'I don't eat ice cream or bacon or sausages or white bread or milk...It's simple. Fatty things make you fat,' said Gary Player to Golfweek when asked how he stays so healthy and fit at age 72, as he embarks on his 51st Masters. Yes, but what about beer, Mr. Player? Beer! Surely, a Guinness here and there wouldnt hurt? I wonder if Mr. Player would be impressed to know that on the weekends at work, sometimes we pick TOUR players for the day and drop down and do push-ups every time they make birdies? True story.
A Knight to Remember:
Speaking of being impressed, the first time I met Gary Player, I was a hot sweaty mess. It was a weekday night a few years ago and I stopped by work after spending several intimate hours with a treadmill, a stair-master and some weights. Being late in the evening, I figured I could just grab some things off my desk without any fanfare. I pulled up to The Channel, grabbed my employee badge and headed in. As I opened the door of the lobby, barreling in at a fast pace, there stood a South African legend in my path. I practically bounced into ' and off of ' the steely sturdy 5-foot-7 Black Knight, as if he had just set a basketball screen on me.
Well, of all the Hall-of-Fame golfers you would want to (literally) run into whilst looking bedraggled, hat-pulled down, and clothed in just a perspiration-drenched sports bra and gym shorts, its the fitness-fiend known as Gary Player, my friends.
Whoa there, champ! He said to me, chuckling, Youre looking strong! And I just stood there frozen in my tracks, wide-eyed and grinning. (I had met Tiger, Jack, and Arnie without losing the ability to talk in their presence, but with Mr. Player, a guy who Id always admired for his incredible work ethic and exuberant passion for golf ' and life, my mouth was completely caught off guard.) Eventually I was able to spit out a meek Hi, and then something to the effect of, Yes um I worked out.
And then it was over. He was out the door. And I had just met a man I considered a hero and Id forgotten to shake his hand or tell him my name. I'm never getting that moment back.
On Sunday, Ryan Zimmerman launched a two-out solo home run into the left-field stands in the bottom of the ninth to give his Washington Nationals a dramatic opening night victory and christening the fancy fresh ballpark with the walk-off dinger. Heres hoping well see similar heroics by a golfer in Texas this Sunday; perhaps with a memorable winning putt on the 72nd hole at the new Rees Jones' Tournament Course at Redstone Golf Club, sending someone straight to Amen Corner for the first time. Houston, Hallelujah!
Things Im Not Buying Into:
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