Roger Maltbie - March 23, 2012


Golf Channel on NBC Analyst Roger Maltbie is in Orlando, Florida this week for coverage of the Arnold Palmer Invitational. Over the past few months, Roger has lost 43 pounds and he plans to lose more weight. He tried to lose weight a couple of years ago with little success but he ran into a doctor he knew who told Roger that he really needed to lose weight. Roger began with a five week fast where he did not eat any food for that period of time. He has a good plan right now and he is excited to lose more weight.

The best things about the Bay Hill Club & Lodge course are the risk/reward par 5s at 6 and 15. He loves how you can make eagle or double bogey on those holes which can change an entire tournament. Along with the par 5s, he also loves the final 3 holes which provide all different kinds of excitement and as we have seen over the years, players have won and lost the Arnold Palmer Invitational in equally dramatic fashions over 16, 17, and 18.

Over the years, broadcasting has gone from being a challenge to being a pleasure. When he was on the PGA TOUR, he never thought he would become a broadcaster. When he first started, the technology was very different as there was not as much coverage, there were not as many cameras, and there was not as much communication. The old Bob Hope Classic provides a good example as he remembered the days when he would be out at one of the four courses to follow a leader and he would at times not be able to communicate with his producer and know what was going on.

In 2011, 8 under par won the tournament but Roger thinks that the winning score will be lower this year because the weather is better, there is not as wind, the rough is not as penal, and overall the conditions are better for scoring.

Roger has had the chance to watch some of the best moments of Tiger Woods’ career including the 2000 U.S. Open when he exclaimed after a shot at #6 at Pebble Beach that it was no longer a fair fight. Of course, Tiger went on to win by 15 shots. Right now, he sees a Tiger Woods that is on his way back. He has been playing much better recently however there was a time when if he drove the ball in the fairway, there was no doubt that he was very likely to win. Tiger has moved away from that but his driving is improving and if his wedges can improve as well, Tiger will win again and Roger has no doubt that Tiger will win again.

In the duration of careers, golf becomes a collection of many different kinds of numbers. Both Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods have been able to compile extraordinary careers by any definition and while he does not know if Tiger will break Jack’s records, he does know that it will be very exciting and he looks forward to seeing what happens.