Hooks Cuts Post Valhalla

By Rich LernerSeptember 23, 2008, 4:00 pm
  • If Boo Weekly has a pulse and can walk, he HAS to be in the next Ryder Cup doesnt he?
  • Laughters as important as birdies, and Boo delivered in both departments.
  • Whats your lasting image from Valhalla? Is it Anthony Kim holding the American flag after the victory, or Boo riding the donkey down the first fairway on Sunday? Or is it something else?
  • Kenny Perry hugging his father ' pure Kentucky with his denim overalls ' put a lump in the throat, didnt it?
  • Nick Faldos getting blasted, which is what happens to the losing captain when his stars dont win a match.
  • For pure electricity, Steve Stricker topping Sergio Garcia on Saturday, after Sergio had cut loose with that primal scream, was the best sequence of the weekend.
  • Hunter Mahans reaction Sunday at 17 was very Tiger-like, and Id love to see more of that from him in regular tournaments.
  • Think of how your view of various players changes because of the Ryder Cup. Boo Weekleys one of the greatest characters the games ever seen; Kims a rock star who will be winning majors soon; Mahans tough as nails; J.B. Holmes is unreal; Ian Poulters clutch; and Robert Karlssons better than we even knew.
  • I dont have a problem with Paul Azinger retaining his captaincy.
  • Setting up the golf course to yield birdies was critical. It allowed the home team to juice up the huge galleries and it made for a wildly entertaining fan experience. This was a high volume rock concert with one fist-pumping, crowd erupting, get-in-the-hole-get-in-the-hole, scream-at-the-top-your-lungs birdie after the next.
  • This Cup allowed golf to show the world its not elitist, with deep fried, down home originals like Boo and Kenny and J.B., with the kind of emotion and player reaction usually reserved for sports like hockey, and crowds that behaved like it was Florida against Georgia.
  • Zinger and the boys hanging out with the grounds crew deep into the night leading the cheers of We got the Cup is a scene I wont soon forget.
  • Kim taking apart Sergio was the equivalent of a first inning grand slam in a World Series Game 7. Valhalla was shaking.
  • European fans are hilarious and bring color and spirit to the Cup. My brother lives in Louisville and was at a downtown restaurant. A group of Euro revelers broke out in Ole, Ole, Ole only to be matched by some Americans responding with U-S-A, U-S-A, U-S-A. My brother asked the waiter to see if the Europeans would mind singing happy birthday to his wife. Before he knew it, theyd gathered around the table and serenaded my sister-in-law!
  • Padraig Harrington seemed a bit spent off his double major summer. Sergio, but for that one roar, was at last silenced.
  • Zinger tossing USA lapel pins like confetti on Tuesday to the crowds lingers in my mind. Show us some love this week, he shouted. A torrid affair it was.
  • Raymond Floyd chest bumping Kim brings a smile. At last a new generation of buck-up boys a bit like the old ones.
  • 2004 captain Hal Sutton, at Valhalla for the past captains get-together, told me on Friday the reason he liked this team is because they were individuals. I balked, thinking that goes against the idea that they needed to come together as a team. He explained that they had strong personalities and that guys like Boo and J.B. had one-of-a-kind swings which were evidence that they believed strongly in themselves.
  • I told 1995 captain Lanny Wadkins that Butch Harmon said Kim reminded him of a young Lanny. Lanny said with a smile, I like that.
  • Butch was spot on early in the week when he told me he loved this U.S. team, because the young guys brought no baggage and no scars from past Ryder Cup losses. He said they were hungry.
  • Itd be nice if the next captain invited Larry Nelson to help out.
  • This was a significant moment for American golf, which had been dominated for the last decade by Tiger, with Phil having had a brief period in the spotlight. Its now about something more.
  • What a year for American golf, too, with Tiger at Torrey and Zingers ringers at Valhalla.
  • All the emotion that poured out over three days is an ingredient thats missed week-to-week on Tour. Wouldnt you love to see more of what we saw from Mahan, Boo, Stricker, Justin Leonard, Poulter and Graeme McDowell?
  • If youve never been to a Ryder Cup, make it a point. Theres nothing in golf that remotely looks, sounds or feels like it.
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    Like father like son: Bring Your Child to Work Day

    By Jay CoffinApril 26, 2018, 7:51 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. – Today is Take Our Sons and Daughters to Work Day at Golf Channel, where everything is fun and games until your child promptly says something that embarrasses you beyond belief. It’s only happened six times today. So far.

    My daughter, 12, is in middle school and feels like she’s too big for this sort of shindig. But my son Brady, 11, was all in. The deal was that he could spend the day with me, I’d take him to McDonald’s for lunch, but he had to write a golf story of some sort for GolfChannel.com.

    Here is his unedited work, in all its glory:


    My name is Brady Coffin and I play golf. I started at the age of 4 years old. My two favorite golfers are Jordan Spieth and Tiger Woods. They are really good golfers and every time I watch them they always give me tips.

    My dad Jay Coffin is the best editor of Golf Channel and always gave me tips when I first put the golf club in my hand. I had my very first par in Hilton Head when I was 7 years old. I am on the Drive, Chip and Putt commercial and I was in a movie where I played a young Ben Hogan. My favorite golf course is Royal Blue in the Bahamas.

    I have won many golf tournaments and I am going to play in another tournament next month. I have made a couple of birdies. I am going to play in the PGA Junior League this summer.

    At the Golf Channel I get to meet new people and play many games. One of the amazing people I met was Mr. Damon Hack. He is on the Morning Drive show and was very nice to me. Damon has been playing golf for 25 years and his favorite golfer growing up was Tiger Woods.

    He loves working at Golf Channel.

    “It gives me the opportunity to talk and write about the sport that I love. It’s a sport that I can play with my boys. It’s a sport that I can watch on television. It’s a sport that teaches great life lessons. I couldn’t ask for a better job,” Damon said to me.

    (P.S. I will be better than Jordan Spieth.)

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    Not the 'prettiest' 65, but Duval, Furyk will take it

    By Ryan LavnerApril 26, 2018, 7:44 pm

    AVONDALE, La. – Wearing a polo instead of a dress shirt, working with a caddie and not a producer, David Duval exited the scoring tent, walked toward the group of reporters waiting for him after their 65 and grumbled to teammate Jim Furyk, “The damn media.”

    Duval was joking – we think – since he now is one of us on the dark side, a successful and respected TV analyst, after an injury-shortened career in which he battled Tiger Woods, rose to world No. 1, won a major and then experienced such a miserable slump that it drove him into an entirely new line of work.

    Now 46, Duval doesn’t play much anymore, only 11 events in the past four years. His last made cut was in July 2015. Earlier this year, he teed it up at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, but only because he and his wife, Susie, enjoy the vibe there. Competitively, he knew he didn’t stand a chance. He had moved back to Colorado, worked two out of the three weeks, and then couldn’t practice the other week because the weather didn’t cooperate. Not surprisingly, he shot three consecutive rounds of 76 or worse.

    And that could have been the extent of his season (save for his annual appearance at The Open), but he was drawn to the idea of the team format at the Zurich, to the idea of playing with Jim Furyk, with whom he’s been friends for the past 32 years, dating to their days in junior golf. So Duval reached out, asking the U.S. Ryder Cup captain if he wanted to team up, for old times’ sake.

    “This was about being with a friend, reuniting, having our wives together for a few days,” said Duval, who estimated that he’s played more than 100 practice rounds with Furyk over the years. “Expectation-wise, I don’t know what they are for me. I don’t get to participate out here and compete.”

    Full-field scores from the Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Zurich Classic of New Orleans: Articles, photos and videos

    But Duval took this start seriously. He almost never travels with his clubs, but he brought them to the Masters, working with his old coach, Puggy Blackmon, between TV appearances and bouncing between Augusta Country Club and Augusta University’s practice facility.

    Without any on-camera work since then, he’s spent the past two weeks grinding, even bringing Blackmon to New Orleans for a range session, just like most of the other pros in the field.

    “It’s like a normal preparation,” he said. “Maybe not as much as it would be for a typical player, but a lot more than I’ve been able to do in the past.”

    Duval has no intentions of diving back into competitive golf full-time, but working as an analyst has given him a new perspective on the game he loves.

    “When you don’t play a lot and you don’t have that opportunity, you feel like you have to play perfectly,” he said. “Being on the other side of the desk, you see how many crappy golf shots really, truly get hit, and it’s like, look, you don’t have to be perfect. You just have to hit more good ones than bad ones and go from there.”

    That also sums up his and Furyk’s opening round here at the Zurich.

    Furyk joked before the event that they’re the rustiest team in the field, but playing best ball, they remained steady in a driving rainstorm, then ran off seven birdies to shoot 65 and sit in the top 10 when they finished their round.

    “It wasn’t necessarily the prettiest,” Duval said, “but it was solid. It wasn’t like we had 36 looks at birdie.”

    “We ham-and-egged it really good today,” Furyk added. “We got pretty much one of the best scores we could have out of the round.”

    The second round could be a different story, of course, with alternate shot. It’s a more nerve-wracking format – especially for two aging warriors without many competitive reps this year – and they figure to find some unusual parts of TPC Louisiana.

    But that’s a worry for Friday, because Duval was in the mood to savor his four birdies, his team score of 65 and his ideal start to a work week with his longtime friend.

    “I think it was good,” he said, breaking into a wry smile, “especially for me.”

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    Finau lifts team to opening 62 on improving ankle

    By Ryan LavnerApril 26, 2018, 6:24 pm

    AVONDALE, La. – Tony Finau continues to thrive on his injured ankle.

    Playing for the first time since the Masters, where he tied for 10th despite a high-ankle sprain, Finau matched partner Daniel Summerhays with six birdies to shoot a combined 10-under 62 in fourballs Thursday at the Zurich Classic.

    Finau still isn’t 100 percent – he said he's closer to 70 percent – even after two weeks of rest and physical therapy. During that time he worked with doctors at the University of Utah Orthopedic Center and also the training staff with the Utah Jazz. Before the Zurich, he had played only nine holes.

    Full-field scores from the Zurich Classic of New Orleans

    Zurich Classic of New Orleans: Articles, photos and videos

    “Sometimes simplicity is huge in this game,” he said. “There is not a lot of thoughts in my swing in the first place, so there can’t be that many thoughts when you don’t practice. It served me well today.”

    Partnering with Summerhays, his fellow Utah resident and a friend for more than a decade, they combined to make 12 birdies during an opening round that left them only two shots back of the early lead.

    Asked afterward how his ankle felt, Finau said: “Feeling a lot better after that 62. A great remedy for something hurting is some good golf.”  

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    Woods commits to Wells Fargo and The Players

    By Golf Channel DigitalApril 26, 2018, 6:07 pm

    Tiger Woods will tee it up each of the next two weeks, having officially committed to both the Wells Fargo Championship and The Players.

    Woods' commitment to next week's event in Charlotte was confirmed by multiple Golf Channel sources and first reported during Thursday's "Golf Central."

    The 42-year-old later took to Twitter to formally announce that he is ready for another back-to-back stretch:

    Woods has not played since a T-32 finish earlier this month at the Masters. A winner at Quail Hollow in 2007, Woods has not made the cut there since a fourth-place showing in 2009 and has not played Wells Fargo since 2012. He missed last year's PGA Championship at Quail Hollow because of injury.

    Woods' return to The Players will mark his first trip to TPC Sawgrass since 2015. He won on the Stadium Course in both 2001 and 2013. This will be Woods' second back-to-back of the season, having missed the cut at the Genesis Open before finishing 12th the following week at the Honda Classic.

    After starting the year ranked No. 656 in the world, Woods is up to No. 91 in the latest world rankings. He recorded three straight top-12 finishes during the Florida swing, including a runner-up finish alongside Patrick Reed at the Valspar Championship and a T-5 finish at the Arnold Palmer Invitational.