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Watney Merrick take friendship to China

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America sends, if not its best, then at least north/central California’s best to this week’s World Cup in China. Nick Watney, a NorCal staple, picked Long Beach’s John Merrick for this week’s tag-team outing.

The two have known each other since their junior golf days and should bring a little laid-back West Coast vibe to the Far East.

“We’ll probably make a trip into Hong Kong,” smiled Merrick at last week’s Children’s Miracle Network Classic. “It will be fun because we’re friends.”

On the course Merrick and Watney will present an undivided front. Off the course, however, is a different story.

“He’s a (Sacramento) Kings’ guy and I’m a Lakers’ fan,” Merrick said. “I’ve been razzing him about that for a while. When Robert Horry hit that shot (in the 2002 Western Conference Finals) the Kings were about done.”