Golf Talk Live - Byron Nelson Transcript Segment 3

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PETER KESSLER
WHAT WERE YOUR IMPRESSIONS OF JONES, BEFORE YOU KNEW HIM, AND WHAT WAS YOUR RELATIONSHIP LIKE WHEN OF COURSE YOU DID?

BYRON NELSON
WELL, MY FIRST IMPRESSION OF (??) JONES, I'D READ A LITTLE BIT ABOUT HIM IN THE LATE 20'S BECAUSE RIGHT IN THE LATE 20'S AND 30'S WHEN HE WAS THE GREATEST, EVEN THOUGH HE WAS GREAT FROM 30 TO, FROM 20 TO 30 BUT WHEN I

STARTED READING ABOUT HIM, WELL THEN, I NEVER THOUGHT ABOUT TRYING TO COPY HIM OR EMULATING HIM IN ANYWAY BECAUSE HE WAS AN AMATEUR AND HE WAS A BUSINESS MAN, HE WAS A GREAT ATTORNEY AND STUFF, SO, BUT UH, AND HE PLAYED GOLF IN A FASHION,

I SAW SOME PICTURES THEN IN THE MOVIES, YOU KNOW YOU GO MOVIE THEATRE, AND SEE THEM AND HE MADE A PIC... HE MADE A FILM, YOU KNOW, AND HE PLAYED DIFFERENTLY THEN I FELT I

COULD PLAY AND LIKED TO PLAY. NOW HE WAS FREE AND EASY AND HIS SWING WAS ALMOST LOOSE AT THE TOP AND HE HAD A GREAT LONG RHYTHM THAT MOVED A LOT, THROUGH THE BALL LIKE THAT, AND I NEVER DID PLAY QUITE LIKE THAT, BUT I WASN'T CRITICIZING THE

WAY HE WAS PLAYING BUT THAT, THAT PART I DIDN'T HAVE WITH HIM, BUT, THEN WHEN I WENT TO AUGUSTA AND GOT INVITED THERE FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 1935 AND MET HIM, WHY I HAD NEVER MET HIM BEFORE AND I WAS VERY MUCH IMPRESSED WITH HIM BECAUSE HIS

MANNERISM AND THE AUTHORITY IN WHICH HE SPOKE ABOUT THE GAME, ABOUT HOW HE PLAYED AND STUFF. I, I WAS AMAZED HOW MUCH THE, JUST BEING AROUND AND HEARING HIM TALK. NOT TALKING TO ME, BUT HEARING HIM TALK,

CONVERSATION OF HOW SMART I THOUGHT HE WAS AND ABOUT THE GAME AND OF COURSE HE WAS, AND THEN OF COURSE, HE, HE, OF COURSE AFTER 1930 THE ONLY PLACE HE EVER PLAYED ANYMORE HE PLAYED AT AUGUSTA AND I, I PLAYED WITH HIM A FEW TIMES DOWN

THERE AND BECAME VERY CLOSE TO HIM AND AVERY GOOD FRIEND OF HIS AND ADMIRED HIM TREMENDOUSLY AND HE HAD SUCH A GREAT COMMAND OF THE, OF GRAMMAR, OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE. THAT, REMARKABLE TO ME BECAUSE

I JUST TALK TEXAS TALK, YOU KNOW, AND UH, BUT UH, I, I ADMIRE HIM TREMENDOUSLY. I DON'T KNOW ANYBODY THAT, IN MY GROWING UP DAYS, I DON'T THINK THERE'S ANYBODY IN GOLF, THAT I ADMIRED ANYMORE THAN I DID BOB JONES, AND THEN WHEN I GOT

TO PLAY WITH HIM SOME AT AUGUSTA AND I KNOW I PLAYED WITH HIM AND I THINK IT'S 1942, IN A PRACTICE ROUND, AND HE AND I WERE PARTNERS AGAINST A COUPLE OF PLAYERS I'LL NOT MENTION AND THOSE COUPLE PLAYERS STARTED

BIRDING THE 7TH HOLE AND BIRDIED CLEAR THROUGH FOR 7 STRAIGHT HOLES, AND WE'RE PLAYING AGAINS... PLAYING WITH THEM AND THEY NEVER WON A HOLE. JONES SHOT THE LAST NINE IN 32. SO THAT'S MY IMPRESSION OF JONES.

PETER KESSLER
WHEN PLAYERS TODAY FIND OUT THAT YOU REALLY DIDN'T CHANGE YOUR SWING AFTER 1936 AND YOU COULD LITERALLY PUT YOUR CLUBS AWAY FOR A FEW WEEKS AND COME BACK OUT AND MAKE THE SAME SWING YOU HAD MADE
UP THE 18TH HOLE OF A TOURNAMENT YOU WON, WHAT DO THEY MAKE OF THAT?

BYRON NELSON
WELL I THINK, I HAVE BEEN TOLD BY SOME PRETTY GOOD PLAYERS, QUITE GOOD PLAYERS, THAT I PLAYED, I PLAYED ALRIGHT BUT I SHOULD HAVE PRACTICED MORE... AND ONE, ONE PERSON THAT DID THAT, ONE TIME WE WERE, BEN HOGAN AND I TIED FOR THE TEXAS OPEN AT SAN ANTONIO AND BELIEVE IT OR NOT, THINGS

HAVE CHANGED SO MUCH THAT WE HAD TO GO DOWN TOWN TO W-O-A-I TO GO ON THE RADIO, NO TV OF COURSE IN 1930 UH 1940, SO, WE WERE BEING INTERVIEWED AND THEY INTERVIEWED ME ABOUT BEN AND I SAID SOME THINGS ABOUT HIM, NICE THINGS AND SO THEY SAID, WELL, AND

THEN ASKED HIM ABOUT ME AND HE SAID WELL, BYRON'S GOOD, PRETTY GOOD PLAYER BUT HE'D GET BETTER IF HE'D PRACTICE.

PETER KESSLER
(LAUGHS)

BYRON NELSON
WELL, I, I, I WON THE NEXT DAY SO I DON'T WHETHER I PRACTICED OR NOT BUT ANYWAY, I LOOK BACK

(CLEARS HIS THROAT) EXCUSE ME. I LOOK BACK ON IT AND REALIZE THAT, AND THE REASON I REALIZED IT MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE IS BECAUSE OF TIGER. NOT WHAT, NOT NECESSARILY THAT HE'S THE BEST PLAYER IN THE WORLD. I'M NOT SAYING THAT, BUT I DIDN'T THINK ABOUT

BEING THE BEST PLAYER IN THE WORLD. I LOVED TO PLAY THE WAY I PLAYED. IT WAS COMFORTABLE AND THAT'S, THAT'S WHAT I DID, BUT I REALIZE THAT HE DOES THINGS, WE WERE GOING TO DISCUSS TIGER SO WE'LL JUST GO IN AND TALK OF TIGER SO, I, I, I'VE WATCHED HIM AND KNOW HIM SO WELL SINCE HE WAS 14, THAT HE STILL IS

WORKING ON HIS GOLF GAME TO GET BETTER AND BETTER AND BETTER AND HE'S THE NUMBER ONE PLAYER IN THE WORLD TODAY AND HERE'S THE NUMBER WORLD PLAYER IN, IN THE GAME STILL TOLD ME TO MY FACE JUST IN OUR OWN PERSONAL CONVERSATION THAT I'M STILL

MISS TOO MANY SHOTS ESPECIALLY FROM 150 YARDS AND IN. I MISS TOO MANY SHOTS. HE DIDN'T TALK ABOUT AROUND THE GREEN BECAUSE HE'S GOOD THERE, BUT, SO I, I HAD A FEELING ABOUT MY OWN GAME, SPEAKING OF TIGER AND JONES. NOW, I DIDN'T NECESSARILY THEN, BUT I LOOK BACK NOW AND KNOW I DID

NOT PUTT WELL. I DIDN'T PUTT BADLY, BUT ON ONE AREA, THE CIRCLE ABOUT 12 TO 15 FEET, THAT'S CALLED THE SCORING AREA.... WHEN YOU PLAY. YOU KIND OF NEED TO MAKE A LOT OF THOSE, AND I DIDN'T MAKE MANY OF THOSE.

I DIDN'T THREE PUTT VERY OFTEN AND I WAS A GOOD LAG PUTTER AND I WAS A GOOD SHORT PUTTER BUT I DIDN'T MAKE AS MANY OF THOSE AS I FELT THAT I SHOULD AND TIGER WHEN, KNOWS WHEN HE'S NOT PUTTING WELL HE DON'T SAY

I DIDN'T PUTT WELL. I'M NOT ROLLING THE BALL RIGHT AND I THINK THAT'S A BETTER EXPRESSION.

PETER KESSLER
WHEN WE COME BACK, LET'S TAKE A LONG LOOK AT HIS GOLF GAME AND WE'LL ALSO COMPARE, YOU'LL COMPARE HIS SWING TO YOURS AND WE'LL DO ALL OF THAT IN JUST A MOMENT. AS WE LEAVE YOU LET'S TAKE A LOOK AT A GRAPHIC THAT SHOWS JUST HOW DOMINANT BYRON

WAS FROM A SPECIAL PERIOD REALLY, FROM 1939 THROUGH 1946. WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.

(MUSIC CONTINUES)

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