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Jack or Tiger: Who's the greatest - Page 249

Poll Results: Tiger or Jack: Who's the best?

 
  • 69% (1634)
    Tiger Woods is the man
  • 30% (716)
    Jack Nicklaus is my favorite
2350 Total Votes  
post #4465 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by tmac20 View Post


While I agree with many of your points, I disagree with this one. Tom Watson was one of the GREAT players from his era. He almost won the 2009 Open Championship, and still makes the cut at PGA tour events and majors at 64 years old. These guys were great players because their skill level was exceptional, not because everybody else's skill level was terrible.

Im not disagreeing with you but its a little early to say how many great players there are in Tigers era.  Watson's career didn't exactly align with Jacks. Tom won his first tourney in 74 Jacks first win was in 62.  Who knows maybe Rory is Tigers Watson or maybe Speith will be Tiger Player.  Its not a fair comparison to compare all the guys Jack competed against when most of them have been retired for a while.  Almost none of Tigers competitors have retired so lets just wait to say Jacks top guys were better than Tigers.

post #4466 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post

If you look at the field of golfers that were playing in their prime on tour during most of Tiger’s major run I think you’ll find it a pretty unimpressive group once you get past Phil and maybe Ernie. In terms of pure numbers, there may have been more good players in the Tiger era, but I think there was a serious drought of great golfers as compared to Jack’s time.

The problem with that argument is that mine - that there are far, far more great golfers now that can't separate themselves because there are only 4 majors a year - explains it away. You'd expect the Tom Watsons and the Lee Trevinos of the world, that next tier below Jack, to win a bunch of tournaments. Jack couldn't win 'em all, and another huge chunk was club pros.

Greatness is much easier to measure when you can assume that the vast majority of the field wasn't great. You can't do that today IMO.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post

And as for the argument that their greatness may be enhanced by the fact that it was easier to win majors in a shallower field, let’s not forget that one of those greats was an eyelash away from winning a major five years ago at the age of 59 and has made the cut on the PGA Tour twice this year, at age 64, including at a major against the current “deep” field.


And, as exemplified by the fact there are no/few other 60-year-old golfers nearly winning majors, that's a hyper-extreme outlier. If you'd like to base your argument around Tom Watson still being able to shoot a great round here or there that's fine, but it's not really going to sway me much.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post

And as for this statement: “there were 75 Tom Watsons” I don’t know how anyone in their right mind could possibly take this statement seriously. Can you imagine 75 guys who played in their prime between 1997 and 2008 that are capable of contending in a major tournament 25 years from now? I’ll be shocked if there’s one.


You're getting caught up in the wording. I could have easily substituted Lee Trevino's name or Ray Floyd or Gary Player without changing my argument, you couldn't.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post

And I don’t even think Tom Watson was, hands down, the second best golfer of the Nicklaus era. That distinction may very well go to either Palmer or Player. In my opinion Tiger was the beneficiary of a bit of a dry spell in terms of competition. When Tiger was winning majors, it was because he could do things no one else could do…at the time. Things like hitting driver 8 iron to 550 yard par 5’s or hitting greens from 270 yards out in the fairway. There was no one else that could do that then, but there are more than a handful of guys that can do that now and if those guys were in their prime between 1997 and 2008 Tiger would probably have 9 or 10 majors instead of 14 and we wouldn’t even be having this discussion.

I think you are, to an extent, underrating the players of the 2000s. You don't think peak Vijay or peak Phil or Goosen or Els or Duval or Furyk could pull those shots off?

And again, a big reason why we don't think of those players as highly is because they a) had Tiger winning every other major to compete with and b) had a hundred players just as good as they were to compete with every single week.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

Awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

P.S.  Jamo is going to be the next Bill Simmons. c2_beer.gif

I haven't gotten the call to write for Jimmy Kimmel Live ... yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post


Actually, no the definition of "deeper fields" is not grouped closely together, but better from top to bottom as opposed to top heavy, as the writer is suggesting without actually proving.


Sure, and it's true I didn't really address whether the average golfer has gotten better between 1975 and 2005 (I said something like "use common sense"), I only really talked about how bunched together the fields were. To prove argue about would be a bit more subjective than I was willing to do.

Frankly, I think the subjective side leans heavily towards the side of the fields being much deeper these days. This isn't scientific, but look, if you will, at this Wikipedia chronological list of major winners: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chronological_list_of_men's_major_golf_champions

The first thing I notice is that between ~1920 and ~1985, the list is EXCEEDINGLY American, with a small smattering of Brits winning the British Open.

Golf in 1975 was America vs. America vs. vs. Britain vs. America vs. America, etc.

Today it's America vs. Britain vs. Ireland vs. Spain vs. France vs. Germany vs. South Korea vs. New Zealand vs. Australia vs. South Africa vs. Argentina vs. Italy vs. Canada vs. Fiji.

Just in the last 11 years you can find golfers from each of those countries that have won a major. On the other hand, before Seve won his first major in 1979, there were only 2 majors won ever by players not from an English-speaking country (Arnaud Massey from France at the 1907 Open, and Robert DeVicenzo from Argentina at the 1967 Open). (I'm counting South African as English-speaking because they do currently list it as an official language, but I don't know nearly enough about the country's history to know if that was true throughout the 20th century. Apologies for my ignorance.)

Golf is a much more global game now, played all over the world in all sort of economic and sociopolitical situations. The talent pool is immensely larger than it was 40 years ago. I don't see how you can possibly believe that fields haven't gotten better even just for that reason. The game is WAY better top to bottom than it used to be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post

On your second point, you can replace the word talent with competitiveness and I think that is what we're talking about. Let me try to illustrate. In a case where you have three great players and for the sake of argument four "not great" players hitting there drives off of the first tee with persimmon drivers. The three great players hit the ball in the center of the clubface and split the fairway at 250 yards. All four "not great" players miss the center of the clubface by 1/8" two are in the deep rough and two are out of bounds. Fast forward thirty years and one great player and six "not great" players do the same with a 460 cc Ping/Titleist/Taylor Made...or whatever. The great player hits the absolute center of the clubface and splits the fairway 350 yards. The "not great players  miss the center by 1/8". All six are in the fairway at about 300 yards. Standard deviation of the earlier group= high, standard deviation of the later group=low. Conclusions to be drawn on the respective skill levels/competitiveness/talent of the two "not great" groups=none.

This is all very true. The advances in equipment and fitness and green speeds all would tighten the standard deviation, but that also doesn't really matter. Even if we were to accept that those are the only things that have made the fields tighter ... that means we still have tighter fields. I'm not trying to measure the respective "greatness" of Jack-era fields vs. Tiger-era fields, I'm trying to measure how tough they would have been to beat.
post #4467 of 4672

Just For The Younger Generation Who Did Not Get to SEE THE GOLDEN BEAR PLAY & WARM UP ON THE PRACTICE TEE... Jack Could Hit The Golf Ball A TON. > My Eyes Saw It < Over 310 In His Prime, Today That Distance Would Translate Into (keeping in mind wooden heads, balls that would go out of round & fly crazy) Would Be 375...Golf Courses Haven Been Lengthen by that Much... My Choice Is GOLDEN BEAR.Not That I Do Not Like Tiger, He Went To My Old High School & Played Golf On The Course I Grew Up On & Held A 3 At The Age Of 12, Olan Dutra Golf Course, Today Is Called Anaheim Golf Club, Where Tigers Organization Is...Proud To Have That Lineage & Memories Oh Yes Jack Had Barbra At His Side All The Way...Here Is An Article which Will Enlighten Many, They Say Golf Is 80% Mental & 20% Physical... Here Is Another Mental Part Which Many Do Not Even Think About "TOURING PROFESSIONALS" ...http://www.golf.com/tour-and-news/no-woman-has-balanced-golf-and-parenthood-better-barbara-nicklaus. Lets Just say I Have Been There & Done That...JOHNALAN.

post #4468 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jakester23 View Post
 

I think its fair to say the GREAT players from Jacks ear were only great because they didn't have nearly as many people to compete with.  

 

 

Do you honestly believe this statement, or are you being facetious? The only thing that made Jack great was the fact he did not have enough competition? This is preposterous on its face. In the 1977 Open Championship Jack trailed Tom by 1 shot entering the last hole. After Tom hit his shot onto the green Jack had to hit from a terrible lie in the rough. Nearly 200 yards out he hit it onto the green and made birdie, thus forcing Tom to make par.

 

I watched Bobby Jones' video series. In one video which is unedited and shot with a wide angle lens Bobby hits 12 balls that are half buried in a sand trap. Plugged. Hits all 12 of them to within 3 feet. That is greatness. Don't kid yourself about the older players. They had plenty of greatness. 

post #4469 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by jamo View Post



The problem with that argument is that mine - that there are far, far more great golfers now that can't separate themselves because there are only 4 majors a year - explains it away. You'd expect the Tom Watsons and the Lee Trevinos of the world, that next tier below Jack, to win a bunch of tournaments. Jack couldn't win 'em all, and another huge chunk was club pros.



Greatness is much easier to measure when you can assume that the vast majority of the field wasn't great. You can't do that today IMO.

And, as exemplified by the fact there are no/few other 60-year-old golfers nearly winning majors, that's a hyper-extreme outlier. If you'd like to base your argument around Tom Watson still being able to shoot a great round here or there that's fine, but it's not really going to sway me much.

You're getting caught up in the wording. I could have easily substituted Lee Trevino's name or Ray Floyd or Gary Player without changing my argument, you couldn't.

I think you are, to an extent, underrating the players of the 2000s. You don't think peak Vijay or peak Phil or Goosen or Els or Duval or Furyk could pull those shots off?



And again, a big reason why we don't think of those players as highly is because they a) had Tiger winning every other major to compete with and b) had a hundred players just as good as they were to compete with every single week.

I haven't gotten the call to write for Jimmy Kimmel Live ... yet.

Sure, and it's true I didn't really address whether the average golfer has gotten better between 1975 and 2005 (I said something like "use common sense"), I only really talked about how bunched together the fields were. To prove argue about would be a bit more subjective than I was willing to do.



Frankly, I think the subjective side leans heavily towards the side of the fields being much deeper these days. This isn't scientific, but look, if you will, at this Wikipedia chronological list of major winners: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chronological_list_of_men's_major_golf_champions



The first thing I notice is that between ~1920 and ~1985, the list is EXCEEDINGLY American, with a small smattering of Brits winning the British Open.



Golf in 1975 was America vs. America vs. vs. Britain vs. America vs. America, etc.



Today it's America vs. Britain vs. Ireland vs. Spain vs. France vs. Germany vs. South Korea vs. New Zealand vs. Australia vs. South Africa vs. Argentina vs. Italy vs. Canada vs. Fiji.



Just in the last 11 years you can find golfers from each of those countries that have won a major. On the other hand, before Seve won his first major in 1979, there were only 2 majors won ever by players not from an English-speaking country (Arnaud Massey from France at the 1907 Open, and Robert DeVicenzo from Argentina at the 1967 Open). (I'm counting South African as English-speaking because they do currently list it as an official language, but I don't know nearly enough about the country's history to know if that was true throughout the 20th century. Apologies for my ignorance.)



Golf is a much more global game now, played all over the world in all sort of economic and sociopolitical situations. The talent pool is immensely larger than it was 40 years ago. I don't see how you can possibly believe that fields haven't gotten better even just for that reason. The game is WAY better top to bottom than it used to be.

This is all very true. The advances in equipment and fitness and green speeds all would tighten the standard deviation, but that also doesn't really matter. Even if we were to accept that those are the only things that have made the fields tighter ... that means we still have tighter fields. I'm not trying to measure the respective "greatness" of Jack-era fields vs. Tiger-era fields, I'm trying to measure how tough they would have been to beat.

 




I don’t yet know how to put parts of a post in a box but I want to address each point the best I can so I’ do it this way.
point 1. and point 2.and 3 go hand in hand. I understand the position that a POSSIBLE (because we can’t actually know) reason for Jack’s contemporaries looking like they are better than Tiger’s (accumulated majors) MAY be due to the relative weakness of the rest of the field but Tom Watson’s performance over the last five years suggests that he is a very special player indeed and if he’s this good at 64 how good must he have been at 34 when he was stealing majors from Jack. The reason you don’t see others in that group doing the same thing is they never really tried. They retired from that level of competitive golf a long time ago, but that doesn’t preclude the possibility that they may have, had they tried. I see that as a strong POSSIBILITY because as I said, at the time Tom Watson wasn’t even the clear cut no.2 to Jack.
I’ve conceded Phil and still only give Ernie a “maybe’ but Duval, Singh and Furyk? No, they couldn’t pull off those shots with the same regularity as Tiger OR players such as Rory, Bubba, or Adam. I think you could make a much better case for ,instead of Tiger competing with 75 Watsons, Players or Palmers That Jack competed with 2 Rory’s, 3 Phils and a Bubba. I don’t trust statistics as much as I trust my eyes. I was alive during Jack’s run but I was not at all interested in golf at the time so I can’t speak to that, but I was an avid golf fan during the Tiger era and I still am and I truly believe the golf I was watching, other than Tiger, was just not as good as what I have seen lately from the afore mentioned guys that have come into their own since 2008. It just wasn’t that good. It’s kind of like the MJ vs. LeBron argument. I don’t care what the numbers are or who ends up winning more championships, I saw both play and my strong impression is that I was watching a better basketball player when I was watching Michael than I see in LeBron. That’s just what I see.
Obviously the world of professional sports is constantly evolving and as different sports have popularity spikes the field gets larger and by implication “tougher” . But the time span we’re talking about between the end of Jack’s run to the beginning of Tiger’s is 11 years. 11 years! Even if you look at the beginning of each players run you’re barely talking about a single generation. Do you really believe that much change can take place in a one generation? I don’t. There were two significant spikes in golf’s popularity in the modern era. One was a result of Arnold Palmer and the other the result of Tiger Woods. The spike Arnold generated may very well have resulted in increased competition for Jack in the second half of his run(it’s possible) but there’s no way Tiger’s own spike resulted in increased competition for himself, not between 1997 and 2008. And whether or not there is a second half to Tiger’s run is yet to be seen, but based on the competition that I see out there NOW, I highly doubt it.
post #4470 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post
 
I understand the position that a POSSIBLE (because we can’t actually know) reason for Jack’s contemporaries looking like they are better than Tiger’s (accumulated majors) MAY be due to the relative weakness of the rest of the field but Tom Watson’s performance over the last five years suggests that he is a very special player indeed and if he’s this good at 64 how good must he have been at 34 when he was stealing majors from Jack.

I don't think it's a very fair argument to use 64 year old Tom Watson as a feather in Jack's cap.  One, Jack isn't playing against 64 year old Tom Watson and to suggest that his longevity proves greatness at a younger age is a big stretch.  What's Jack's record as a 59-64 year old??

 

Further, who's to say that Phil or Ernie or Vijay or Rory, or whoever, won't have moments of greatness in their 50's or 60's?  And even if they do ... how does that directly correlate back to today?  Isn't it entirely possible that they kept practicing and getting better as they got older?  And maybe they also started benefitting from new technology as well?

post #4471 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hacker620 View Post
 

Who is the best ? Jack is ! And once Tiger produces a successful career ( retired or once he surpasses the records presently held by Jack ) we can make a better determination of this question ... Presently , Jack is the best and has set the standard that Tiger and every other Golfer on the Tour is looking to achieve, Yes?

 

Do you have anything in his on course accomplishments other than 18>14 to support that?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by 9iron View Post
 

 

 

Do you honestly believe this statement, or are you being facetious? The only thing that made Jack great was the fact he did not have enough competition? This is preposterous on its face. In the 1977 Open Championship Jack trailed Tom by 1 shot entering the last hole. After Tom hit his shot onto the green Jack had to hit from a terrible lie in the rough. Nearly 200 yards out he hit it onto the green and made birdie, thus forcing Tom to make par.

 

 

Here is the field of Jack's first British Open.  What percent of the worlds best players were there?  How does that compare to the percentage of the worlds best players that Rory just beat.  Or Tiger beat in HIS first British Open?

 

And, BTW, we hear a lot about Jack's steely-eyed competitors that he had to beat.  Which makes me wonder how steely eyed could Trevino have been if he shoots 77 in the final round to blow the tournament to Jack - and this kind of thing happened a lot more than those who didn't live through it remember.  Jack himself said his MO in the majors was to play steady and let his competitors make the mistakes.  It doesn't sound like HE thought his competitors were those steely eyed competitors who could look him in the eye and not flinch.

 

Quote:
 
x-Jack Nicklaus 68-69-73-73--283
Doug Sanders 68-71-71-73--283
Harold Henning 67-72-73-73--285
Lee Trevino 68-68-72-77--285
Tony Jacklin 67-70-73-76--286
Neil Coles 65-74-72-76--287
Peter Oosterhuis 73-69-69-76--287
Hugh Jackson 69-72-73-74--288
Tommy Horton 66-73-75-75--289
John Panton 72-73-73-71--289
Peter Thomson 68-74-73-74--289
Arnold Palmer 68-72-76-74--290
Maurice Bembridge 67-74-75-76--292
Bob Charles 72-73-73-74--292
John Richardson 67-72-76-77--292
Bert Yancey 71-71-73-77--292
Roberto Bernardini 75-69-74-75--293
Billy Casper 71-74-73-75--293
Clive Clark 69-70-77-77--293
Roberto De Vicenzo 71-76-71-75--293
Christy O'Connor Sr. 72-68-74-79--293
Walter Godfrey 71-75-74-74--294
Tom Weiskopf 70-74-72-78--294
Guy Wolstenholme 68-77-72-77--294
Bruce Devlin 72-76-72-75--295
Graham Marsh 75-72-74-74--295
Ronnie Shade 72-75-69-79--295
Stuart Brown 73-73-71-79--296
Bobby Cole 71-76-71-78--296
Brian Huggett 68-78-73-77--296
Tom Shaw 73-71-73-79--296
Peter Alliss 69-74-78-76--297
Brian Barnes 69-74-75-79--297
Gay Brewer 69-74-74-80--297
Eric Brown 73-72-74-78--297
Dale Douglass 75-71-73-78--297
David Graham 72-72-74-79--297
Florentino Molina 67-75-78-77--297
Kel Nagle 71-74-73-79--297
Dave Thomas 70-72-76-79--297
Alex Caygill 74-72-74-78--298
Tony Grubb 72-77-71-78--298
Dave Marr 71-71-74-82--298
a-Steve Melnyk 69-74-76-79--298
Jimmy Hume 72-75-76-76--299
Peter Townsend 72-73-74-80--299
George Will 69-78-74-78--299
Guy Hunt 72-70-80-78--300
Jimmy Martin 71-74-75-80--300
Tommy Aaron 68-74-79-80--301
a-Warren Humphreys 73-73-76-79--301
Tomas Lopez 70-72-75-84--301
Norman Wood 73-73-77-78--301
Derek Small 69-74-80-79--302
Davis Love Jr. 71-74-73-85--303
Richard Livingston 75-73-75-81--304
Sandy Walker 70-78-75-84--307
 
post #4472 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback View Post
 

 

x-Jack Nicklaus 68-69-73-73--283
Doug Sanders 68-71-71-73--283
Harold Henning 67-72-73-73--285
Lee Trevino 68-68-72-77--285
Tony Jacklin 67-70-73-76--286
Neil Coles 65-74-72-76--287
Peter Oosterhuis 73-69-69-76--287
Hugh Jackson 69-72-73-74--288
Tommy Horton 66-73-75-75--289
John Panton 72-73-73-71--289
Peter Thomson 68-74-73-74--289
Arnold Palmer 68-72-76-74--290
Maurice Bembridge 67-74-75-76--292
Bob Charles 72-73-73-74--292
John Richardson 67-72-76-77--292
Bert Yancey 71-71-73-77--292
Roberto Bernardini 75-69-74-75--293
Billy Casper 71-74-73-75--293
Clive Clark 69-70-77-77--293
Roberto De Vicenzo 71-76-71-75--293
Christy O'Connor Sr. 72-68-74-79--293
Walter Godfrey 71-75-74-74--294
Tom Weiskopf 70-74-72-78--294
Guy Wolstenholme 68-77-72-77--294
Bruce Devlin 72-76-72-75--295
Graham Marsh 75-72-74-74--295
Ronnie Shade 72-75-69-79--295
Stuart Brown 73-73-71-79--296
Bobby Cole 71-76-71-78--296
Brian Huggett 68-78-73-77--296
Tom Shaw 73-71-73-79--296
Peter Alliss 69-74-78-76--297
Brian Barnes 69-74-75-79--297
Gay Brewer 69-74-74-80--297
Eric Brown 73-72-74-78--297
Dale Douglass 75-71-73-78--297
David Graham 72-72-74-79--297
Florentino Molina 67-75-78-77--297
Kel Nagle 71-74-73-79--297
Dave Thomas 70-72-76-79--297
Alex Caygill 74-72-74-78--298
Tony Grubb 72-77-71-78--298
Dave Marr 71-71-74-82--298
a-Steve Melnyk 69-74-76-79--298
Jimmy Hume 72-75-76-76--299
Peter Townsend 72-73-74-80--299
George Will 69-78-74-78--299
Guy Hunt 72-70-80-78--300
Jimmy Martin 71-74-75-80--300
Tommy Aaron 68-74-79-80--301
a-Warren Humphreys 73-73-76-79--301
Tomas Lopez 70-72-75-84--301
Norman Wood 73-73-77-78--301
Derek Small 69-74-80-79--302
Davis Love Jr. 71-74-73-85--303
Richard Livingston 75-73-75-81--304
Sandy Walker 70-78-75-84--307

 

Was not aware that the guitarist for The Who was also an accomplished golfer back in the day?!?!?! :beer:

post #4473 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Golfingdad View Post

I don't think it's a very fair argument to use 64 year old Tom Watson as a feather in Jack's cap.  One, Jack isn't playing against 64 year old Tom Watson and to suggest that his longevity proves greatness at a younger age is a big stretch.  What's Jack's record as a 59-64 year old??

 

Further, who's to say that Phil or Ernie or Vijay or Rory, or whoever, won't have moments of greatness in their 50's or 60's?  And even if they do ... how does that directly correlate back to today?  Isn't it entirely possible that they kept practicing and getting better as they got older?  And maybe they also started benefitting from new technology as well?

 



I don’t think it’s a stretch at all. Is it more likely than that he was only a good golfer playing in a mediocre field as a 29 year old and remained a good golfer in a “deep” field at 59. There’s no way a 59 year old T. Watson has the same physical abilities as a 29 year old T. Watson, and I would venture to say he actually practices and plays far LESS now. Let’s establish that there are only two “great” players, Tiger and Jack. We’ll call players like T. Watson, G. Player, A. Palmer, L. Trevino and S. Ballesteros “near great”. It has been argued that there were just as many “near greats” in the Tiger era as in Jack’s era but they could not distinguish themselves as clearly because of the “depth” of the field in general. My arguments against that are twofold. One is that the recent performance of Watson while not proving it, strongly suggests that he is a player that would have been able to distinguish himself as a “near great” in any era (and by association, his contemporaries with equal success). The other is that there is one player (Phil)during Tiger’s reign and several others (Rory, Bubba, Martin, Adam) post Tiger era, that ARE, or look to be on their way to distinguishing themselves as “near greats”, so depth of field alone does not explain away the absence of more “near greats’ during Tigers reign. I don’t know why it’s so hard for people to accept the possibility that part of Tiger’s success was due to a dry spell of “near greats” during his heyday. It happens all the time in sports. It’s cyclical. There have been dry spells in term of great NFL quarterbacks, MLB pitchers, MLB home run hitters, American tennis players, etc.
I’m going to try and end my involvement in this discussion by answering your “who’s to say” question. No one can say one way or another, obviously, but like I said I would be shocked to see it happen. I will even go so far as to agree that if any one of purported “near greats” of Tiger’s reign (not Phil because I‘ve already conceded him and not Rory because he doesn’t fit the “during Tiger’s reign” criteria and is actually one of the guys that I have used to point out that “near greats” can distinguish themselves in today’s field) but if anyone of the group that includes the likes of Singh, Furyk, Duvall, Leonard…etc. is within 2 shots of the lead on the back nine on Sunday of a Major championship at the age of 59 or older, I will gladly admit that I was wrong and that that group is every bit as good as Palmer, Watson, Player…etc. and you can all come on this forum and tell me what an idiot I am. Deal?
post #4474 of 4672
Quote:

Originally Posted by turtleback View Post

 

And, BTW, we hear a lot about Jack's steely-eyed competitors that he had to beat.  Which makes me wonder how steely eyed could Trevino have been if he shoots 77 in the final round to blow the tournament to Jack - and this kind of thing happened a lot more than those who didn't live through it remember.  Jack himself said his MO in the majors was to play steady and let his competitors make the mistakes.  It doesn't sound like HE thought his competitors were those steely eyed competitors who could look him in the eye and not flinch.

 

 

 

How many players shot 66 and even 65 against Tiger on the last day of any of his major wins? Now how many were in 2nd or 3rd place as was the case against Rory last week?

post #4475 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by 9iron View Post
 

 

 

How many players shot 66 and even 65 against Tiger on the last day of any of his major wins? Now how many were in 2nd or 3rd place as was the case against Rory last week?

Offhand, Bob May springs to mind.

 

Not that I have a clue how your question relates to my post.

 

How many shot 65 or 66 against Jack in the final round of a major win?

 

I do remember a few things you night have forgotten:

 

1962 US Open:  Jack beats Arnie in a playoff - after steely competitor Arnie 3-putted 10 times that week including a 38 putt round on Saturday.

 

1971 Masters.  Jack enters final round tied for the lead but then loses to steely eyed competitor Charlie Coody largely because he 3 putted 4 times and put a ball into Rae's creek to shoot 72.

 

1970 British Open.  Jack gives it away by 3-putting 3 of the last 5 holes - but then steely eyed competitor Doug Sanders gave it right back by missing a 3 footer on the 72nd hole to let Jack into a playoff.

 

1963 - with a 2 stroke lead he bogies 3 of the last 4 holes to miss a playoff with steely eyed competitors Phil Rodgers and Bob Charles by 1 

 

How many times did Tiger win a major in the ways I list above for the 2 of the 4 examples where he won because his competitor threw up on themselves?

 

How many times did Tiger blow a lead in a major in the late going by multiple 3-putts and rinsing a ball?  Of course Tiger did not have play such stalwarts as Doug Sanders, Bob Charles, Phil Rodgers, and Charlie Coody.

 

I cannot even begin to imagine the press coverage if Tiger were to blow a major in the ways Jack did in the '63 British Open and the '71 Masters.


Edited by turtleback - 7/25/14 at 5:49pm
post #4476 of 4672

For me, the math is simple if you take all the names away.  If you have 100 players and only 5 of them are really good, those 5 will win most of the tournaments and majors.  If you have 100 players, and 50 of them are really good, those 50 will win most of the tournaments and majors.  But, each of those 50 will win less individually than the 5 would.  They are equal in ability to the 5 really good players, but had stiffer competition.  That is the math of the article.  The article doesn't say that the major winners of Jack's era were not really good players.  They were.  It just states that there are more major winner level players now and the stats confirm that there are more players closer to the top level now.

post #4477 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by 9iron View Post
 

Do you honestly believe this statement, or are you being facetious? The only thing that made Jack great was the fact he did not have enough competition? This is preposterous on its face. In the 1977 Open Championship Jack trailed Tom by 1 shot entering the last hole. After Tom hit his shot onto the green Jack had to hit from a terrible lie in the rough. Nearly 200 yards out he hit it onto the green and made birdie, thus forcing Tom to make par.

 

 

Point is: the modern players are pretty damn good too.

 

I like facts, so here's one that's related to this discussion. I've said it before, but I'll say it again: Jack and his contemporaries played against fields that had a bunch of club pros in it. He wasn't playing against stalwarts of the golf world.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by rb72 View Post

I don’t think it’s a stretch at all. Is it more likely than that he was only a good golfer playing in a mediocre field as a 29 year old and remained a good golfer in a “deep” field at 59. There’s no way a 59 year old T. Watson has the same physical abilities as a 29 year old T. Watson, and I would venture to say he actually practices and plays far LESS now. Let’s establish that there are only two “great” players, Tiger and Jack. We’ll call players like T. Watson, G. Player, A. Palmer, L. Trevino and S. Ballesteros “near great”. It has been argued that there were just as many “near greats” in the Tiger era as in Jack’s era but they could not distinguish themselves as clearly because of the “depth” of the field in general. My arguments against that are twofold. One is that the recent performance of Watson while not proving it, strongly suggests that he is a player that would have been able to distinguish himself as a “near great” in any era (and by association, his contemporaries with equal success). The other is that there is one player (Phil)during Tiger’s reign and several others (Rory, Bubba, Martin, Adam) post Tiger era, that ARE, or look to be on their way to distinguishing themselves as “near greats”, so depth of field alone does not explain away the absence of more “near greats’ during Tigers reign. I don’t know why it’s so hard for people to accept the possibility that part of Tiger’s success was due to a dry spell of “near greats” during his heyday. It happens all the time in sports. It’s cyclical. There have been dry spells in term of great NFL quarterbacks, MLB pitchers, MLB home run hitters, American tennis players, etc.
I’m going to try and end my involvement in this discussion by answering your “who’s to say” question. No one can say one way or another, obviously, but like I said I would be shocked to see it happen. I will even go so far as to agree that if any one of purported “near greats” of Tiger’s reign (not Phil because I‘ve already conceded him and not Rory because he doesn’t fit the “during Tiger’s reign” criteria and is actually one of the guys that I have used to point out that “near greats” can distinguish themselves in today’s field) but if anyone of the group that includes the likes of Singh, Furyk, Duvall, Leonard…etc. is within 2 shots of the lead on the back nine on Sunday of a Major championship at the age of 59 or older, I will gladly admit that I was wrong and that that group is every bit as good as Palmer, Watson, Player…etc. and you can all come on this forum and tell me what an idiot I am. Deal?

 

You place far, far too much importance on a one-time freak event (Tom Watson). That event and course setup perfectly suited his game. He holed a miraculous number of putts.

 

How'd Jack play from age 50 onward? Shouldn't he have added to his major total after 46 if he was so much better than Tom Watson?

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by boogielicious View Post
 

For me, the math is simple if you take all the names away.  If you have 100 players and only 5 of them are really good, those 5 will win most of the tournaments and majors.  If you have 100 players, and 50 of them are really good, those 50 will win most of the tournaments and majors.  But, each of those 50 will win less individually than the 5 would.  They are equal in ability to the 5 really good players, but had stiffer competition.  That is the math of the article.  The article doesn't say that the major winners of Jack's era were not really good players.  They were.  It just states that there are more major winner level players now and the stats confirm that there are more players closer to the top level now.

 

Thanks. But we're repeating ourselves time and time again.

 

I asked an older gentleman this past weekend, that if Jack and Tiger played 100 matches against each other, in their prime, and you could equalize the equipment somehow, who would win how many? He said Tiger would take 55-60 of them.

 

And that's a huge margin. Tiger might only take 65 or so from an average PGA Tour pro. The gap between great and adequate is tiny.

post #4478 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas View Post





I like facts, so here's one that's related to this discussion. I've said it before, but I'll say it again: Jack and his contemporaries played against fields that had a bunch of club pros in it. He wasn't playing against stalwarts of the golf world.

I asked an older gentleman this past weekend, that if Jack and Tiger played 100 matches against each other, in their prime, and you could equalize the equipment somehow, who would win how many? He said Tiger would take 55-60 of them.

And that's a huge margin. Tiger might only take 65 or so from an average PGA Tour pro. The gap between great and adequate is tiny.

I'm not much of a contributor to this thread, but I have two comments on the above...

1. The club pros are in the same category as the guys that place between 60th and 70th place in each tournament.. I feel like year guys shouldn't even be on the conversation in either era that is. I think the discussion should probably be centered around the best 25 in each era.. Everyone else is irrelevant really!

2. With all due respect to the older gentlemen even if it was Jack Him self, that evidence as far as I'm concerned is not admissible in this debate, and I'm surprised that you would try and sneak it in there! I have to admit I chuckled when I saw it, especially since you started your post with "I like facts"!

;)
post #4479 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu3baid View Post


I'm not much of a contributor to this thread, but I have two comments on the above...

1. The club pros are in the same category as the guys that place between 60th and 70th place in each tournament.. I feel like year guys shouldn't even be on the conversation in either era that is. I think the discussion should probably be centered around the best 25 in each era.. Everyone else is irrelevant really!

2. With all due respect to the older gentlemen even if it was Jack Him self, that evidence as far as I'm concerned is not admissible in this debate, and I'm surprised that you would try and sneak it in there! I have to admit I chuckled when I saw it, especially since you started your post with "I like facts"!

;)

If you think club pros are in the same category as guys at the bottom of the cut line in majors right now, you're honestly pretty lost on the level of talent out there. Good club pros these days couldn't even qualify for the PGA Tour, let alone make the cut in majors.

post #4480 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by mmoan2 View Post

If you think club pros are in the same category as guys at the bottom of the cut line in majors right now, you're honestly pretty lost on the level of talent out there. Good club pros these days couldn't even qualify for the PGA Tour, let alone make the cut in majors.

Did you read what I wrote after my comment?

What I'm saying is that they are similar in terms of their irrelevance in the conversation.. I'm sorry but those guys have just as much as a chance of winning a tournament as the club pros did back then.. Thus, my recommendation that strength of field only be measures at the level of the top 25 players in each era only..

I hope that clears things up!
post #4481 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu3baid View Post


Did you read what I wrote after my comment?

What I'm saying is that they are similar in terms of their irrelevance in the conversation.. I'm sorry but those guys have just as much as a chance of winning a tournament as the club pros did back then.. Thus, my recommendation that strength of field only be measures at the level of the top 25 players in each era only..

I hope that clears things up!

I understood what you meant, but they are not irrelevant is what I'm saying. Henrik Stenson was ranked like 200th in the world in 2011 and now look at him. Same for Kaymer. Their scoring averages were about a stroke from where they were then and now, but that's the difference between the top-10 and 200+. The strength of the fields today make it difficult for even the top 25 players to make the cut sometimes. Webb Simpson, Lee Westwood, Brandt Snedeker, Graham DeLaet, Hunter Mahan, and Gary Woodland are all ranked worse than 30th in the world. Would you say that none of them "has a chance" at winning a tournament? Ben Crane is ranked 101 and he just won the Fed Ex St. Jude last month. The strength of the field makes Tiger's record of only missing 10 cuts in his career that much more incredible to me. Even when his swing seems absolutely awful he still manages to be there on the weekend.

post #4482 of 4672
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu3baid View Post


Did you read what I wrote after my comment?

What I'm saying is that they are similar in terms of their irrelevance in the conversation.. I'm sorry but those guys have just as much as a chance of winning a tournament as the club pros did back then.. Thus, my recommendation that strength of field only be measures at the level of the top 25 players in each era only..

I hope that clears things up!

Its more than the top 25 players now. The top 50 are completive all the time in big events such as majors.  Kaymer was ranked 61st before he won the Player then won the US Open. There are more guys with a chance to win every tourney than there was when Jack played. 

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