Wednesday Thoughts

Sex Scandal, Fender Bender, Whatever: It’s Dinah Shore week.  It’s the week before Augusta.  I am fired up about golf.  I turn on Golf Central.  Mistake.  John Feinstein — whom I have always respected up to this point — referred to the 2009 sex and PED scandals of Tiger Woods as “the car accident.”  A moment later, the host asked a question using: “when the accident happened.”  And you wonder why they won’t discuss the Woods-PED connections?

The Eternal Lie:  I mentioned a long-form article about Rory from the New York Times Magazine.  We learn in that article:

Woods hasn’t notched a victory in 20 months, yet he has still won an astounding 26 percent of the tournaments he has entered (Jack Nicklaus, an 18-time major winner, won 12.7 percent).

That is a lie because…

[breaks to run the numbers]

…it is an intentional apples-to-oranges comparison.  An apples-to-oranges comparison that is intentionally deceptive in order to glorify Woods.  For, as anyone with an IQ above room temperature instantly recognizes, they are using Jack’s numbers through age 65.  Woods, on the other hand is only 39 years old.  Does it surprise anyone to learn the following about Jack’s results?

Age           Win Pct.

40-49            3.76
50-59            0.00
60-65            0.00

That represents a 5 for 229 period for Jack — in his old age!  So their “stat” compares Woods’s prime playing years to Jack through age 65.  Question: If Tiger Woods was so great, why the need to lie in order to build him up?

By the way, and for the record, Jack won 38 tournaments in his 30’s.  Woods has won 33, with a half year to go.  Don’t expect to hear that factoid from Golf Channel or any other mainstream golf media outlet.

Rory’s Balance:  I encountered something I found odd in a recent article about Rory McIlroy’s fitness programme:

Less than five years ago Rory McIlroy could barely balance on one leg. Imagine that. The No. 1 golfer in the world could not stand on one leg for the length of time it takes to drive a golf ball.

“I had huge amounts of mobility and flexibility — that’s never been my problem, but I couldn’t stand on one leg for more then 10 seconds.”

I was fairly stunned by that.  How hard can it be to balance on one leg for ten seconds?  I’ve always had good balance, but I was able to do it for two minutes on each leg, one right after the other.  I could have gone longer (though I was starting to feel a burn near the end), and I’m no spring chicken.  Maybe I wasn’t doing it properly or something.

Odds-on Man Out:  How can professional sportswriters — receiving paychecks and benefits — not know what an odds-on favorite is?

“If Woods does play at Augusta National, bookies in Las Vegas who for nearly two decades have made him the odds-on favorite are giving 50-1 odds he won’t leave the place with a fifth green jacket.”

Woods was never once an odds-on favorite, but don’t tell that to Tim Dahlberg, AP Sports Columnist.

New ESPN Website Format:  It started this morning.  I heard some radio yappers talking about it yesterday; they dreaded the change; I thought, “It can’t possibly be any worse.”  My first impression:  It’s great!  I love it.  It’s faster.  The screens are far less “busy.”  The website no longer has ADD.  No auto-play videos or audios started up.  It’s early days, I know, but I am very optimistic.  Before this, I literally never went to ESPN other than through Google News search returns.  It was horrible.  Maybe now there will be another readable golf website joining CBS.  Who knows, maybe I’ll even create an account and post there.  This fills me with joy.  No kidding.  Why?  Because it shows I was not the only one who noticed the web was becoming increasingly less readable.  Way to go, ESPN!  [I reserve the right to change my mind, but my first impression is very favorable.]

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2 Responses to Wednesday Thoughts

  1. Sports-realist says:

    Part of the quote ‘for nearly two decades’ caught my attention…I actually couldn’t find the history of the vegas favorites for golf majors, but Eldrick was not the favorite when he started in 1996 nor in 1997 when he won…Not sure how 1998 was viewed, and he didn’t win again until 2001….But now in 2015 Eldrick is certainly not the favorite….So I’m guessing vegas started the ‘Woods is the favorite from about 2000-2013…Just saying 12 years or 13 years is closer to 10 years, not 20 years….

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