Pro golf should be all about entertainment, and that’s what DeChambeau delivers on the PGA Tour, 375 yards at a time
I don’t want to watch a 10-9 Major League Baseball game during which all runs scored are through singles and an occasional double. I want home runs. I don’t want to watch a 30-24 NFL game of 80 three-yard runs and field goals. I want long pass plays. I don’t want to watch a 110-100 NBA game with nothing but layups and free throws. I want 3-pointers and dunks.
Save artistry for the art galleries; I want action.
So, why would I want to watch a professional golf tournament where the best players on the planet are hitting drivers and 5-irons to 25 feet and two-putting for par? I don’t (“Red alert: Golf’s apocalypse has arrived,” July 9).
Professional golf has figured out that it’s in the entertainment business, and Bryson DeChambeau is an entertainer. Hitting 375-yard tee shots is entertaining. Trying to safely pitch out but going into a water hazard/penalty area is entertaining. Going at it with a camera person is entertaining. You think the camera person was offended? I think not; how often does a camera person get on camera?
Professional golf history is filled with flame-outs. So, sit back and enjoy.
How far is too far? We passed it at the last exit
John Hawkins presented his case against “home run derby” golf and asked, “And how far is too far? You tell me.” (“Red alert: Golf’s apocalypse has arrived,” July 9).
I don't claim to know the exact answer, but we're surely already there.
To paraphrase Bobby Jones: Nowadays these guys play a game with which I am not familiar. But at least they still need to carry 14 clubs, because a mid-iron might be needed for the occasional par 5 they can't reach with a 9-iron. And long irons for the holes too short for driver.
Hot Springs Village, Ark.
Maybe golf’s hot rods need to wear restrictor plates
Do I read between the lines of John Hawkins’ piece, in a suggestion that the male pro golfers, who all play a game unfamiliar to most of us males, use equipment different than what is available to us? Kind of like a NASCAR regulator to reduce frightening and unsafe speeds? (“Red alert: Golf’s apocalypse has arrived,” July 9).
By the way, those relics such as Merion might actually make Bryson DeChambeau’s 350-yard drives useless as they outfly the fairways. Remember Tiger-proofing Augusta National?
Thanks for the good read, especially on the signage.
Mount Gretna, Pa
A solution that would fit golf to a tee
Just take the tee away (“Red alert: Golf’s apocalypse has arrived,” July 9).
Don’t allow tour professionals to use a tee. Place the ball on the ground, no building a tee by smashing the ground, and go.
Don’t change the ball; don’t restrict club length, and let’s see if anyone can hit a 5.5-degree driver off the deck 380 yards.
Port St. Lucie, Fla.
(Horton is a retired club professional and former touring pro on the PGA Tour and European Senior Tour.)
Applause for DeChambeau
From my vantage point as a 36-year-old sports fan and amateur golfer, what Bryson DeChambeau is doing is remarkable and deserves admiration (“Red alert: Golf’s apocalypse has arrived,” July 9).
Golf is now more than ever still a thinking man's game of skill. DeChambeau is just doing it in such a determined, single-minded way that it is turning off some who don't like this approach to the game, for whatever reason.
Hitting 330-plus-yard drives as straight as he is and paying off the situations he gets into with birdies is as skillful of an approach as any other, and it's far more exciting to my eyes. He's not just pulling driver on every hole; he's thinking and making smart decisions based on his game. Playing great golf. And don't shrug off his putting stats while saying he's taking the game to new lows in skill. It looks mechanical, but he putts and reads putts beautifully. It’s not a coincidence that he led the Rocket Mortgage Classic field in putting, on tricky greens that the field hadn’t seen more than once.
He is a bit rough around the edges at times, but he's real, and I can't wait to see what he does next.
I’m in full agreement on those garish signs. Awful.
It’s a new game plan in golf
John Hawkins is correct about Bryson DeChambeau and the long drives of 360 yards and more. Tragic (“Red alert: Golf’s apocalypse has arrived,” July 9).
All of the touring professionals should start hitting 360-yard-plus drives in the tournament this week. That would show them!
Heck, I think I'll start doing it, too.
There can't be any more to it than gaining 40 pounds, can it?
It’s going to be fun watching 150 players, all looking like the defensive line of the Washington Redskins marching down the fairways.
Hilton Head Island, S.C.
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