Tuesday, March 9 2021


Don’t give a putt about Tiger

Update: July, 01/2018 - 09:00
Viet Nam News

by Robert Bicknell

It seems that whenever Tiger Woods does anything, the entire golf world stops and takes a collective crap for itself.  Even something as inconsequential as “testing a mallet putter”.

Yeah, you read that right. For some reason, this is earth-shattering news.

What’s next, the entire golf community losing their collective minds when its revealed that Tiger started using four wraps under his grips instead of three?

Oh, I can just imagine the commentaries, and investigations. The Golf Channel and other pundits claiming the lack of an extra wrap will allow Tiger to turn the club over easier and promote more of a draw shot. Others will begin to ponder if Tiger is intentionally changing his go-to shot from a fade to a draw. That, of course, will launch a discussion as to the benefits and drawbacks of each shot trajectory.

Imagine the hue and cry if Tiger reveals he changed to colored underwear which match his slacks instead of traditional tightie whities. Pundits will question if Tiger is becoming a younger Doug Sanders (Google him if you don’t understand the reference) and will soon dye his shoes and gloves to match.

This is not actually Tiger Woods fault. He is just going about his business and looking for ways to get his scores down to where he can win a tournament. The problem lies in the “gotta have it now news cycle” where digital media wants to break every new story before the next guy and generate some revenue producing clicks.

When I was a kid and playing ice hockey, we read that Boston Bruins defenseman, Bobby Orr, never worse socks when playing, claiming it liked the feel better. Seeing that he was the greatest player on the planet at the time, we all stopped wearing socks. We didn’t stop to consider that he’s playing hockey in a climate controlled environment and we’re playing outside on the lakes and ponds.

Yeah, frostbite is a biatch, but such is the influence of superstars on the general public.

In all shot making categories except putting, Tiger was in the Top 5, so it makes sense that he look at alternatives. His old putter just isn’t cutting it, so he put his trusty Scotty Cameron aside for a bit and tried out a TaylorMade TP Ardmore 3 mallet head.

Personally, I prefer the TaylorMade Spider Black.

That doesn’t mean he will stop using his Scotty Cameron – the one he used to win 13 out of 14 majors with. Nor is he obligated to use the TaylorMade putter, despite having an endorsement deal with TM.

Listen, at his level, they let him do what he wants within reason…

Also, sometimes it’s best to use a different putter for a while, especially practice rounds, just to shake things up a bit. I find that my favourite putter would become cocky at times and refuse to cooperate. When that happens, I take out a brand new, sexier looking model for a few rounds. Let my old putter sit at home and think about its poor attitude. Knowing it has competition is a wonderful way to put it in its place and knock that ego chip off.

I do the same thing with my Drivers. When my new TaylorMade M3 started acting up, I pulled out the older M1 or M2 for a few rounds. The M3 learned its lesson rather quickly.

So Tiger is not doing anything earth-shattering, but writers are making a big thing out of it. Really, except for equipment sponsors, who the hell cares what he uses?

Anyway, with the Open Championship just around the corner, we have more important things to write about. Things like: “Why does the R&A set up courses differently than the USGA”, and “Why does the Open Championship have less controversy than the US Open.”

HINT: The answer to both questions is the same.

The websites were also making hay about a player’s ball hanging on the lip of the hole for longer than 10 seconds and a penalty stroke being applied. Yes, this is the rule. Has been for a long time, but you would think that they just discovered fire.

Personally, I think that the media should stop looking for controversy and just let the guys play golf. Life is too irritating as it is, why cause more dissention? VNS


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