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Drive for show my butt!

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 
I have heard the "You drive for show and putt for dough" crappy saying ever since I started playing this great game of ours. Who the heck came up with such a erroneous saying. Must have been someone who hit it like a little girl. If I have learned one thing playing golf it is that if you cannot consistantly put the ball in play and and be fairly long off the tee you will NEVER be a good player no matter how good you putt. Even the best players on the PGA tour are around 50% putters from six feet and the percentages drop fast from there. If you are constantly in the rough, behind trees, or hitting long irons into par 4's that is the distance you will be putting from for par. I tell you what I will play the best putter in the world straight up if they can't get off the tee I will go home with every dollar they have. The bottom line is you drive for dough too!
post #2 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by NM Golf
I have heard the "You drive for show and putt for dough" crappy saying ever since I started playing this great game of ours. Who the heck came up with such a erroneous saying. Must have been someone who hit it like a little girl. If I have learned one thing playing golf it is that if you cannot consistantly put the ball in play and and be fairly long off the tee you will NEVER be a good player no matter how good you putt. Even the best players on the PGA tour are around 50% putters from six feet and the percentages drop fast from there. If you are constantly in the rough, behind trees, or hitting long irons into par 4's that is the distance you will be putting from for par. I tell you what I will play the best putter in the world straight up if they can't get off the tee I will go home with every dollar they have. The bottom line is you drive for dough too!
No you don't. Peruse a few articles here. They'll show you that you're inaccurate in your assessment.

Obviously driving well helps, but distance doesn't have much to do with it at all. In fact, it may even be a minor detriment.
post #3 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by NM Golf
I have heard the "You drive for show and putt for dough" crappy saying ever since I started playing this great game of ours. Who the heck came up with such a erroneous saying. Must have been someone who hit it like a little girl. If I have learned one thing playing golf it is that if you cannot consistantly put the ball in play and and be fairly long off the tee you will NEVER be a good player no matter how good you putt. Even the best players on the PGA tour are around 50% putters from six feet and the percentages drop fast from there. If you are constantly in the rough, behind trees, or hitting long irons into par 4's that is the distance you will be putting from for par. I tell you what I will play the best putter in the world straight up if they can't get off the tee I will go home with every dollar they have. The bottom line is you drive for dough too!

NOT TRUE!!! I played an entire round...and hit only one fairway...but i was amazing around the green and it saved my butt..i ended up shooting 6 over..one of my best rounds...i dont agree with ya! sorry..i totally agree with that quote...drive for show putt for dough..if u dont have a short game..u dont have n e thing
post #4 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by NM Golf
I have heard the "You drive for show and putt for dough" crappy saying ever since I started playing this great game of ours. Who the heck came up with such a erroneous saying.
I think the more erroneous one is "fairways and greens", but it sounds cool enough to be in my tag line. It should be "greens and putting". Nothing means more to scoring than hitting greens and putting. It is a fact.

Originally Posted by NM Golf
If I have learned one thing playing golf it is that if you cannot consistantly put the ball in play and and be fairly long off the tee you will NEVER be a good player no matter how good you putt.
I think that all you have to do off the tee is to put yourself in a position to hit the green. That's all that matters. I don't think that length is a huge factor here, but it will help as long as it doesn't get you into trouble. In my mind, the point of hitting a tee shot is to give yourself the best chance to hit the green, not to hit it as long as possible.

Originally Posted by NM Golf
Even the best players on the PGA tour are around 50% putters from six feet and the percentages drop fast from there. If you are constantly in the rough, behind trees, or hitting long irons into par 4's that is the distance you will be putting from for par. I tell you what I will play the best putter in the world straight up if they can't get off the tee I will go home with every dollar they have. The bottom line is you drive for dough too!
I religiously worked on two things this year. Ball striking and putting. My swing had a loop in it and was causing me to be very inconsistent. Taking the loop out helped me hit more greens this year than ever. As for putting, I worked mostly on my rhythm and putts ranging from 10 to 25 feet. Those two things I struggled with as well. My putting stats also improved.

What was the net gain of these things? My handicap went from a .3 to a +1.8 and I won a club championship. I never expected to drop 2 shots off my game at this stage when shaving a half of a stroke is doing very well. I can honestly say that I never hit my driver for more than 10-15% of my practice time. Taking the loop out of my swing helped my tee ball, but my improvements off the tee were negligible compared to those in GIR and putting average.

Do I think the tee ball is important? Yes. Only because it is a component of GIR.
post #5 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

I agree that if you're a long iron out (still) for an up and down save, wouldn't it seem more difficult than if you had a good drive, short iron..no?
post #6 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by Maverick
I agree that if you're a long iron out (still) for an up and down save, wouldn't it seem more difficult than if you had a good drive, short iron..no?
It doesn't really matter though because putting and chipping makes up approximately 60% of your golf game. I might have made that number up, but I thought I heard that somewhere (might have been 5 years ago for all I know).

It doesn't matter if you are driving it down the middle all-day long if you are 3-jacking them on the greens every other hole. Putting is definitely the part of the golf game where the most shots can be shaved. Either that or chipping.

I won't bash your topic completely, however. Driving the ball well is more of a mental thing for me. If I'm driving the ball well off the tee, my mental state is much better, and I usually play much better as a whole. That being said, I have saved many pars and picked up some good bogeys after hitting crappy drives because my putting saved my butt.

As a whole, it's definitely "drive for show and putt for dough."

But for me, I need to be driving the ball well to score well due to my weak mental capacity.
post #7 of 38
Thread Starter 

Re: Drive for show my butt!

All I am saying is if you cannot put the ball in play off the tee you cannot do the two most important things neccessary to scoring well: GIR and proximity to the hole. Driving is extremely important and so is length, if it wasn't then why can't the women and the seniors compete with the big boys. The women and the seniors are just as good around the green as the PGA boys but yet cannot compete as a whole. The women (Sorenstam and Wie) who do compete are longer than most. There are old guys at my club who can out putt me any day of the week but cannot compete with me because they do not possess the ability to hit the ball long enough. It is easy to show me stats off the PGA tour and say "Hey look the longest hitter was last." ALL THOSE GUYS GET OFF THE TEE ALL OF THEM Sure all things being equal putting and chipping is definately where you can shave strokes and improve your game, BUT you will never achieve a scratch handicap if you cannot hit the driver PERIOD. Don't diss the driver people it puts you in the position to succeed.
post #8 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Yeah, GIR's and putting is where its at. If by driving you mean avoiding hitting it into the woods then yes, driving is pretty important. Putting the ball into play off the tee is of the utmost importance. If you're constantly punching the ball back into the fairway after your tee shot (like I'm known to do) then getting the driver sorted out is a priority.

I find that a good tee shot gives me confidence in all aspects of my game but I do realize that GIR's and putting are bigger priorities that "just a few more yards" off the driver. I'm plenty long when I hit the driver strait and need to get better at hitting greens and putting.
post #9 of 38
Thread Starter 

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by iacas
Obviously driving well helps, but distance doesn't have much to do with it at all. In fact, it may even be a minor detriment.
So do you think someone who putts lights out but can only hit the driver 225 yards can compete with the PGA tour boys? NOT A CHANCE I think too many people out there are bunting it around a 6500 yrd course from the white tees. Go to a modern golf course and go back to those black tees then tell my that driving distance is unimportant.
post #10 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by NM Golf
So do you think someone who putts lights out but can only hit the driver 225 yards can compete with the PGA tour boys? NOT A CHANCE I think too many people out there are bunting it around a 6500 yrd course from the white tees. Go to a modern golf course and go back to those black tees then tell my that driving distance is unimportant.
No offense here, but you're getting kinda silly now. Even Fred Funk averages like 270. Nobody who hits it 225 could even consider making the PGA Tour, and they don't. It doesn't happen. But I'll take the average golfer who hits it 225 and putts lights out over the average golfer who hits it 270 and has no short game any day of the week.

You can't make blanket statements like "if you hit it 225off the tee you can't be on the PGA Tour." That just gets a "duh" from everyone. However, within a group of peers, the better putter has an advantage. Period. Within the peer group that is the PGA Tour, the better putters and those who hit GIRs (as proven by Dave) have a better shot, and that continues on down through the peer groups - Nationwide Tour, upper amateur levels, right on down to the hacks.
post #11 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Yeah NM Golf, I thought you were talking about the regular golfers like all of us here at The Sand Trap. Of course you couldn't compete on the PGA Tour if you hit it 225 off the tee. There are too many courses in the 7,200 yard range these days for that to be a realistic possibility.

I'm talking about the average everyday Joe Schmo golfers when I say putting and chipping will outdo driving any day of the week. Like Erik said, I'll take the 225-yard average drive + great short game over the 270-yard average drive + crappy short game.

Golfers can hit the ball down the fairway 275 yards, but if they are three-putting every hole, it isn't going to matter one bit. They are still going to score too high.

If you want to be a scratch golfer, you are going to have to be effective off the tee and on the greens. That is a given. For us regular non-scratch golfers, however, a good short game is much better to have than a great long game.

I have only shot in the 70s three times, but I putted lights out in all three of those rounds. Coincedental? I don't believe so.
post #12 of 38
Thread Starter 

Re: Drive for show my butt!

You have proved my point. All being the same someone who cannot hit the tee ball well cannot compete at a high level. You say that the better putters will prevail if they all hit the tee ball equally as well. Well how about this. If all the putting ability is equal then I would say they player who can blast it long and straight would prevail. It is easier to get the ball closer from 150 yards than it is from 200, do you disagree? So what makes the putting ability more important? What I said is not silly. You said driving it long is a detriment. I say it is necessary in order to be considered a good golfer (5 handicap or less). ALL 5 handicap or less golfers can hit the tee ball well. In fact if driver distance was unimportant then why do golf courses have different sets of tees? In order to make the golf course more playable and enjoyable, golf course designers build tees of different distances. They don’t
post #13 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by NM Golf
You have proved my point. All being the same someone who cannot hit the tee ball well cannot compete at a high level.
Except that "drive for show, putt for dough" is not "all being the same." It implies the guy putts well. I daresay we've not "proven" your point in the least.

Originally Posted by NM Golf
You say that the better putters will prevail if they all hit the tee ball equally as well.
I don't think that's what we said. We said we'd take the shorter driver who putts well over the longer driver who doesn't have a good short game.

Originally Posted by NM Golf
Well how about this. If all the putting ability is equal then I would say they player who can blast it long and straight would prevail.
The problem is "long and straight" rarely go together. And if the shorter, straight hitter is better with his irons, he will do better.

I really don't know why you're going on so much about this. Long driving in and of itself is not an advantage. Clearly a guy who has "all other things equal" but drives it further and/or straighter has an edge, but that's really not what's been discussed.

Originally Posted by NM Golf
What I said is not silly.
You're changing your argument(s)...

Originally Posted by NM Golf
You said driving it long is a detriment.
...and nobody said that.

Originally Posted by NM Golf
ALL 5 handicap or less golfers can hit the tee ball well.
I know many that cannot... Hell, there are plenty of PGA Tour players who failed to make their card after being in the top 50 in driving distance this year. It's all relative... and it all depends on the REST of a player's game far more than their ability to drive the ball "well" (which is, of course, a relative term too).

I really don't know what this whole discussion has devolved into, but please don't change your stance and attribute incorrect things to others.
post #14 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Thanks Erik. I was getting ready for a longish reply.

Originally Posted by iacas
I know many that cannot... Hell, there are plenty of PGA Tour players who failed to make their card after being in the top 50 in driving distance this year.
Can you say "Scott Hend" anyone?

Look...I'm with Cody and Erik here not because they are friends, but because it makes sense. Lets look at the guy who hits it 225 yards and putts lights out vs the guy who hits it 280 and can't putt for crap. Sure the 225 yard guy can't compete on tour...but neither can the 280 guy because of his putting. Both have components of their game that are good enough for the tour.

The reason for the saying "drive for show, putt for dough" came about is that people WOW over a long tee shot but on average, 30-40% of your shots are from the putting surface. I'd rather have a great putting game than hitting it off the tee where you only hit your driver, at best, 14 times a round. There is a guy at my home course that can't hit it more than 230-240 off the tee, but has an amazing short game. We played in our club championship this year and the final round was around 6600-6700 yards. Sure he took his licks on the longer holes, but still shot 77. Not too bad...for a 74 year old.

I'd take him over a TON of guys at my club who can hit it 270 on a regular basis...even on the long courses. Our lowest handiacapped player is 69 years old and is a +2. Hits it about 250ish and usually never gets in trouble. Would he benefit from hitting it longer? Sure, but I'll reiterate that it should never be at the expense at missing fairways and GIR. Never.

Originally Posted by iacas
The problem is "long and straight" rarely go together. And if the shorter, straight hitter is better with his irons, he will do better.
Couldn't have said it better.
post #15 of 38
Thread Starter 

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by iacas

Obviously driving well helps, but distance doesn't have much to do with it at all. In fact, it may even be a minor detriment.

What didn't you say. Listen lets just agree to disagree.
post #16 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Might I interject? Yes? Thanks... My buddy Ryan has a has such a steep angle of attack that his driver is next to useless. I don't have the heart to tell him this. You know what golf course advice can be like. He slices his drives way short and waaaay right or he pops them up about 130 yards from the tee. Ugly. In short he does way better when he uses a 4-iron.

Even so, his iron game is pretty consistent and he's very good from 80 yards and in. I can flat out blast it an easy 100 past him when I'm driving well, but because his GIR's and short game is better (for the time being) he regularly goes lower than I do. Which, of course, pisses me off. Now, if thats not a good example of the importance of short game I don't know what is. There are only so many par-5's on any given golf course.

There's my 2 cents.
post #17 of 38

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Originally Posted by NM Golf
What didn't you say. Listen lets just agree to disagree.
Again I mean no offense by this, but you've yet to even agree with yourself thus far...
post #18 of 38
Thread Starter 

Re: Drive for show my butt!

Ok this is my last attempt to explain my point. I don't disagree with all your points about putting and short game being important, they are. If you don't have a short game you will not be successful. I am merely saying that I disagree with that saying because it lessens the importance of driving the golf ball. Players at the highest tiers of golf do ALL things well. Tiger Woods drives, hits irons, chips, and putts all for dough. If any of those things were lacking in his game he would not be making all the dough he makes. Sure you might be fine at your local club this weekend if you cannot do one of those things well, but we are not at the highest tier of competition. All PGA guys do those things, the ones that do the most of them the best win. It is as simple as that. That is my point now on to the next.....
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