I never quite found the appropriate time to ask Tom Gillis if he could remember how many times he’d seen the inside of a media center before this week, but given his candor and realistic view of his good yet unspectacular career, I doubt he would have minded. Gillis is a self-described prototypical journeyman — a guy who bounced back-and-forth from the Nationwide Tour and the PGA Tour, along with just about every other international circuit. (continue reading…)
Tag: 2012 Honda Classic
Hollywood’s best screenwriters couldn’t have scripted a more intriguing Sunday at PGA National.
As you all know by now, Tiger Woods had a special day — the kind that gives you goosebumps and was reminiscent of the decade or so when he dominated golf. The 14-time major champion shot a blistering 62, the lowest in the post-scandal era and the best final round of his career (but Brian Harman’s course record 61 still stands), to surge up the leaderboard and give himself a chance at forcing a playoff had Rory McIlroy flinched coming down the stretch at the Honda Classic.
A group of guys arrived at the Honda Classic wearing brown, curly wigs to cheer on Rory McIlroy. The front of their shirts said, “Kiss Me, I’m Rory.” The back had next Monday’s new world rankings, with McIlroy at the No. 1 spot.
Tiger Woods hit a spectator in the head, dumped one in the hazard on the par-3 5th (his 14th of the day), struggled with his ballstriking, but he scrambled his way to a two-under 68 at PGA National to safely make weekend play. Phew. Tournament directors, sponsors, network executives and fans can stop panicking and rest easy.
Yes, “Tiger makes the cut” is now breaking news. Weird. (Maybe stranger that I’m not used to it by now?) (continue reading…)
Okay, fine, he still can, but I didn’t want to mess up the rhyme. Obviously it’s not accurate to say he can’t score anymore. After all, I did see him leave with a blonde…just kidding!
Did you ever think there would be a day that hitting 15 greens in regulation and needing 34 putts would be the norm for Tiger Woods? Well, it has already started to become a pattern! If you hit 15 greens, you should shoot a hell of a lot better than 71, and you definitely shouldn’t be over par. Of course, proximity to the pin must be taken into consideration and Tiger wasn’t throwing darts in the first round of the Honda Classic, so the stats are a bit deceiving. (continue reading…)
The marquee group of young guns (God, I really hate that term) Rory McIlroy, Keegan Bradley and Kyle Stanley teed off at 7:30am on Thursday morning with the winds relatively calm at PGA National. McIlroy and Bradley took advantage of the ideal scoring conditions, posting four-under 66 and three-under 67, respectively. Meanwhile, Stanley didn’t have his best, to say the least, and chopped his way in for a five-over 75.
Rory, who fell victim to the Bear Trap in the second round last year, is currently tied for second. He’s had his eye set on reaching No. 1 in the world rankings and like last week, he has the chance to topple Luke Donald from the throne with a win. (continue reading…)
Somehow I’d managed to miss my previous opportunities to attend a press conference with Jack Nicklaus. I remember last year here (at the Honda Classic) I was super pumped for the chance and then super disappointed because I got caught up in
casual chat an interview, forgot or something else stupid silly less important. Same thing at the Memorial. Well, not this time at PGA National! — and it was just as enjoyable and engaging (with comical moments).
After the official presser, which was streamed live online, Jack held court to a group of us that had gathered around to listen to his analysis and opinions — he was like Santa Claus or a grandpa with all the little kids entranced in him telling the great story ever — where he shared some of the more intriguing bits. His PR guy kept trying to break to end it (because it’s his job
to be a pest and they had other commitments), but Jack ignored him or would make a comment (not meant to be amusing per se but caused bursts of laughter) that meant “whatever, I don’t care, I’m going to do what I feel like doing.” (something that you rarely see when it comes to dealing with us annoying, nosy media people).
Without further ado, here are the highlights, along with his comments that can’t be found in the transcript…Oh, if you’re not an ultra-golf geek and don’t care about super-golfy stuff, like bifurcation — I’m sure some of you guys are thinking, “What the hell does that even mean — then I’d scroll down until you see “BONUS” section.
You’re welcome. (continue reading…)