Just in time for the 2000 season of giving, some suggestions for the Democratic grandmother and the Republican grandson who both enjoy rolling home six-footers for net pars. 'Let me tap that in Ethel, that's an 8 for a 4.'
The Tiger Woods Finger Pointer Putter
Hot new stick comes with pop up finger which springs forth from the butt of the putter just when your ball is eight feet from the hole. The Tiger Finger Pointer emits energy waves to the golf ball, directing it to the bottom of cup for another clutch 15-foot putt.
The Phil Mickelson Mask
Try on this handsome face with the trademark pursed lipped, half-smile and watch good things happen. Mask is great for covering up the fact that inside you want to rip your opponent's head off. Excellent for promoting boy-next-door image, even if you're a ferocious competitor with four wins in 2000. Mask should increase in value as soon as next year, when the 30-year-old mega millionaire figures to win his first major.
The Boss of the Moss Hypnotizer
3x5 metal replica of game's best putter features the soothing, repetitive putting stroke in real time. Hang it from your rearview mirror on your way to that Saturday morning match and then watch the putts drop. Batteries not included.
Simple in its design, sturdy in its function. The Triplett is the old standby in headwear, the bucket hat, but special because it comes from the man who epitomizes the legendary lid. A must for any guy who's dependable, likeable, hardworking, humble, regular and capable of making a meaningful downhill, five-footer at Riviera. Good for fishermen and yardworkers, too.
Billy Andrade's ESPN microphone
Now a collector's item! From the loveable New Englander who almost joined the ranks of us truly untalented TV yackers; instead engineered thrilling, career saving win in Vegas. Not just another golf photograph to hang in your home office.
Paul Azinger Badge of Courage
Handcrafted and tastefully designed. This offering is perfect for a company awards night or just to recognize someone of exceptionally strong character and high moral fiber.
Hal Sutton Motivational Audiocassette
Self-help tape can be used when trying to overcome a difficult obstacle, even the No.1 player in golf. Just insert tape and listen to Sutton, whose cadence and delivery lift and inspire like an old Southern football coach. Repeat the following: 'He puts his pants on the same way I do.' Perfectly mixed with NFL Films music underneath, The Hal Sutton Motivational Audiocassette will have you ready to take on the world.
The Tim Finchem Mask
Excellent for those in power who need to be even-keeled and unemotional. Think of the fun you'll have as friends try to guess exactly what you're thinking. Also good for poker games.
Stuart Appleby's Saucy Aussie Hot Sauce
Your mouth will be so alive with flavor that you'll become a quote machine, amazing your friends at the barbie with witty tomes like the one Appleby uttered at the light-on-Americans World Golf Championship at Valderrama. 'Americans are a bit like prawns on a hot Sunday. They don't travel well.' Refrigeration not necessary after opening.
Anyway, those are just a few possibilities. Perhaps you have some gift ideas of your own. E-mail them to me right here at our website. For now, I'm off to buy more action figures for my two boys. They're a great value. Kids like to use them for their world of pretend. Dads like them because they carry a sports message. My 8-year-old has a Greg Maddux action figure and I told him that what makes Maddux so good is not speed but control. So now in Little League when he uncorks a wild one I'll remind him of his favorite action figure, Greg Maddux.
Remember, it's not how much you spend. It's how much you give. We at The Golf Channel are certainly appreciative that you've given us a look, given us your ear, given us your support over this last year. Wishing you and your family good health and happiness in the New Year ahead.
Watch: Full replays of The Open coverage
NBC Sports and Golf Channel are showcasing nearly 50 hours of live coverage of the 146th Open. Missed anything? Well, you can catch up right here. Click on the links below for replays from Carnoustie, broken down into daily segments:
Thursday, Day 1 (Times ET)
Noon-4PM (Watch): Tiger Woods was up and down in the afternoon, as winds picked up a little and no one could catch Kevin Kisner. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Woods, Russell Knox and Hideki Matsuyama.
1:30-8:25AM (Watch): Defending champion Jordan Spieth got off to a good start, while Kevin Kisner (66) set the early pace. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the early marquee group: Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and Chris Wood.
Knox relishes round with 'mythical figure' Woods
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Russell Knox was expecting the worst and hoping for the best Thursday at The Open.
Playing with Tiger Woods tends to have that effect.
The native Scot received a treat earlier this week when he saw his name on the tee sheet alongside his boyhood idol, Woods.
“Felt good out there, but obviously my swing, it was just like I had too much tension,” Knox said after an opening 73. “I just wasn’t letting it go as normal. First round with Tiger, I expected to feel a little bit different. The way I felt was better than the way I swung.”
Knox said that he was nervous playing alongside Woods, a player he’d only encountered on the range. “He’s almost like a mythical figure,” he said.
But after a while, he settled into the rhythm of the round at Carnoustie.
“I thought it would be worse,” he said, “I feel like I should know what I’m doing. It’s cool playing with Tiger, but I’ve got to get over that. I’m here to win, not just enjoy my walk around the course.”
Knox probably had more interaction with Woods than he anticipated, if only because the third member of the group, Japan’s Hideki Matsuyama, keeps to himself because of the language barrier.
“It’s kind of a blur,” Knox said. “It’s like, Oh, I’m chatting away with Tiger here like normal. I don’t even remember what I was saying.”
There have been countless stories from this year as the next generation of players – guys who grew up watching Woods dominate the sport – get paired with Woods for the first time.
It was no less special for Knox on Thursday.
“It’s nice for him to say things like that,” Woods said, “and we enjoyed playing with each other. Hopefully we’ll play a little bit better tomorrow.”
Rain expected to shower Carnoustie Friday morning
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – By the end of the day Friday, we’ll be able to determine which side of The Open draw ended the first two rounds at Carnoustie with more favorable conditions. With rain expected for most of Friday morning, it seems those who played early/late may be more pleased.
According to Weather.com, there is a 75 percent chance of rain beginning at 2 a.m. local time Friday here in Scotland. That percentage vaults up to 95 percent by 7 a.m., with the first tee time scheduled for 6:35. At 11, the number drops to 55 percent. After 2 p.m., the percentage chances of rain are 25 percent and below for the remainder of the day.
Temperatures during the day are expected to be from the low 50s to the low 60s and winds will vary between 14-18 mph, again per Weather.com.
This is The Open’s official weather report for the weekend:
Saturday: A dull start with some drizzle possible. Staying cloudy for much of the day but gradually becoming brighter with a chance of some sunny intervals during the afternoon and evening. Winds light and variable in direction but should predominantly settle in to a SSE 8-12mph during the afternoon. Max temp 20C (68F).
Sunday: Often cloudy but mainly dry. A better chance of some decent sunny spells compared to Saturday. Most likely the windiest day of the Championship; SW 12-18mph with gusts 20-25mph. Feeling warm, especially in any sunshine with a max temp of 23C (73F).
Bandaged Woods 5 back after even-par 71
CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Tiger Woods arrived Thursday with therapeutic tape on the back of his neck.
Carnoustie’s back nine inflicted even more pain.
Playing in the most difficult conditions of the day, Woods’ progress was stalled by two late bogeys as he settled for an even-par 71 that left him five shots off the lead at The Open.
“I played better than what the score indicates,” he said. “It certainly could have been a little bit better.”
Woods created a stir when he showed up with black kinesiology tape on his neck. Afterward, he said that his neck has been bugging him “for a while” and that Thursday was merely the first time that the tape was visible.
“Everyone acts like this is the first time I’ve been bandaged up,” he said, smiling. “I’ve been doing this for years.”
Woods said that the discomfort didn’t really affect his swing, other than a few shots “here and there.” It didn’t seem to affect his score, either, as he went out in 2 under before a few stumbles on the back nine.
On the fast, baked-out turf, he played conservatively off the tee, using driver only once and 3-wood just twice. Apparently he didn’t need the added distance, not with his 6-iron traveling 240 yards. He tried to play to his spots, even if it routinely left him more than 200 yards for his approach.
That’s the strategy he employed at Hoylake in 2006, where he hit driver just once and captured the third of his Open titles. Despite some of the similarities in firmness, Woods said that Carnoustie presents a different challenge off the tee.
“These fairways are very small,” he said. “They’re hard to hit right now. They’re so fast, and they’re so moundy.”
Finding the fairway wasn’t the chief problem for Woods on Day 1, however. He missed just four fairways but found only 11 greens.
More damaging to his score was his play on the par 5s. Despite having only an 8-iron in, he failed to birdie each of the two par 5s and then bogeyed Nos. 10, 13 and 15 to squander his early momentum.
Though the draw here won’t be a significant factor – or at least not like in recent years, with a wide range in scores from morning to afternoon – it’s clear that Woods (in game 47 of 52) encountered the most difficult of the conditions Thursday, with the wind gusting to 20 mph and the fairways running even faster after another sun-splashed afternoon.
Still, his opening 71 was one of the better scores in the late wave.
“He hit it good,” said playing partner Russell Knox. “He plotted his way around, which I expected him to do, and he was very conservative off the tee. It’s kind of fun to watch him do that, to be honest.”
Even more fun would be a major with Woods in contention.
He hasn’t broken par in the opening round of his last eight majors. Indeed, for Woods, these slow starts have been the real pain in the neck.