Monday, July 21, 2008

A Golf Article? Yup, Making Fun of the Shark!

Here it is.

More interestingly, is that this is the headliner for Yahoo!'s entire sports section. The front page proclaims "The new Shark!"

And the caption under a picture of Greg Norman says,

"Contrary to all those heartbreaking losses, Greg Norman gave golf fans a week they should always cherish."

Yes!! A week in which he played valiantly, gave it his all, and inevitably lost. After shooting 70, 70 and 72, he closed with a 77, gagging away a shot at a championship with another awful Sunday, but that's not how Brian Murphy feels about this, no, not at all!!

Greg Norman: Sunday choker. Aren't those the words we’re supposed to etch on his career tombstone?

Yes, Brian Murphy. Yes they are.

Except, this was different, this Sunday at Birkdale.

Because he didn't choke away a multi-stroke lead? Because he won?

This was no choke at all.

Okay... he had the lead after 63 holes. That's 3 1/2 rounds. That means that he lost the lead on the last 9 holes. And just to clarify, he shot a 77 in the last round. To find a score worse than Norman's 77, you have to slide all the way down the leaderboard to KJ Choi, Simon Wakefield and Alexander Noren. Choi's in a 3-way tie for 16th. Noren and Wakefield are in a 600-way tie for 19th.

Funny thing is... Choi, Wakefield and Noren started the day tied for 2nd, 4th, and tied for 5th. Sure looks like they choked too.

HOWEVER.... the leaders all start the course around the same time, don't they? So maybe a case can be made that the conditions of the course were bad. That the winds changed, or the little fat gopher from Caddyshack was running rampant and Bill Murray was blowing up the golf course with plastic explosives? Is that what you're trying to say Brian?

He came to Birkdale for fun, and for memories, and to get ready for the Senior British Open at Troon, and to wind down his honeymoon with the former Miss Evert.

Yeah, see? It's the conditions. He had to play... wait... WHAT?! So like what dude?! He didn't really want to fucking win!? He didn't really care about exorcising the demons of the fact that he's the biggest choker in the history of professional golf... by winning a Major!?!

Nooooo... you're right. It's not a choke, because he never expected or planned to win. He was just there to paddleboard with Pierce fucking Brosnan and celebrate the premier of Mamma Mia!!!!

Hey Brian... maybe the pressure of the fact that this guy has always, always, ALWAYS....

A. L. W. A. Y. S.

choked in the last rounds of majors, and the $1.5 Million purse, and the thousands of screaming fans and the pressure of being in the drivers seat on Sunday came down on him a little hard. Maybe his grip got a little too tight, and his hands got a little too shaky. Maybe he choked.

Or maybe it had something to do with why the 1st, 2nd, 4th and 5th place golfers after 3 rounds all shot terribly. Maybe the conditions were bad.

Maybe Harrington really stepped up and played well in bad conditions, while Norman, Choi, Wakefield, Noren, Anthony Kim, Ben Curtis and Ross Fisher (all of whom started the day within the top 5) got swallowed up by poor conditions, difficult winds, etc.

I'm not a golf pro here. I'm speculating about some of this, using a set of scores to take an educated guess.

I will, however, GUARANTEE that the reason Greg Norman lost was NOT that "he didn't really want to win, and it wasn't a priority for him."

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