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Hank Haney's Book "The Big Miss" about his time teaching Tiger - Page 22

Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf

I'm not sure what your point is.  Are you arguing that statistics can't be manipulated and that it's uncommon for two opposing sides to use the same numbers to produce statistics that favor their argument?

Where did I say the chapter was full of lies, I simply stated that HH did a statistical analysis that was biased to help prove his case.  The numbers are the numbers, I'm not accusing him of not using the official results from the PGA Tour site.  I'm accusing him of interpreting the numbers he found to provide him with the results he wanted to convey.

I don't have the book any longer, but if I remember correctly, in one citing HH used Top 3 to compare himself to Butch, and in another he used Top 10.  I haven't done the math (I really don't care that much), but I'd guess there's a reason he selected those ranges specifically, rather than maintain consistency in his analysis.  I'd also guess if one did the math they'd find a range maybe Top 5 or Top 20 where the numbers would favor Butch.

I'm not arguing that one cannot manipulate statistics.  I'm saying that it's perfectly possible (in fact, most likely) that statistics say what they purport to say.  You're clearly saying that HH manipulated the statistics so that they would show that HH was the better coach.  You didn't say "the chapter is full of lies," but you're clearly implying it.  When someone is arguing a conclusion using intentionally manipulated data, then that is dishonest--and this is exactly what you're accusing HH of doing.

How can you not see the bias in your own posts?  Do you have any evidence of this, other than "I'm sure if you picked some other random finish point, then the numbers would favor Butch."

Here are the stats that Butch uses:  win%, top-3%, and top-10%, all pretty straightforward.  He's not picking "finished 7th%", or "% of rounds shot in the 60s in Florida", or something stupid like that.  He claims to have used two sources for his numbers:  PGATour.com, and Tiger's website.  If you look at the appendices, HH lists Tiger's finish for 111 events that he played while under Hank's tutelage, including events like the PGA Grand Slam, Skins Game, Target World Challenge, etc.  Since he only counted 91 events in his stats, it's reasonable to conclude that he only counted PGA Tour official money events in his comparison (though he doesn't explicitly state which events he counted).

Win%:  34/127 (27%) under Butch; 31/91 (34%) under HH.

Top-3%:  55/127 (43%) under Butch; 52/91 (57%) under HH.

Top-10%:  82/127 (65%) under Butch; 66/91 (73%) under HH.

Those numbers are consistent.  Why is it that, looking at these numbers, you'd "guess" that some other statistical finishing point would favor Butch, and that HH manipulated the numbers to convey a false conclusion?  The answer is clear:  you are biased.

The University of Michigan did a study of political opinion among citizens about 6 years ago; their conclusion was that the more firmly held a political belief, the less likely the believer was to be responsive to facts.  In fact, when you presented one of the truly devoted with a concrete, indisputable fact which contradicted their worldview, they would find a way to spin that fact to further support their misguided opinion (usually by citing press bias and accusing the reporter of lying, or statistical manipulation).

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Quote:
Originally Posted by brocks

The chapter contained inaccurate information; that is a fact. Since it did, it was inaccurate; that is another fact. I didn't call it a lie, I called it a mistake. I did not state or imply that the inaccuracy was deliberate, I did not state or imply that the inaccuracy was major, and I did not state or imply that the inaccuracy helped Hank's case; if you inferred any of those, that was your misperception, and it's not my problem. To say that my statement was misleading is, charitably, a mistake.

Thank you for proving my point about your prior misleading statement.  More facts make your arguments more clear and less misleading.  You've had to add all sorts of facts, in an antagonistic manner, to support a one-sentence conclusion you drew two pages ago, and then an incomplete factual propping of that conclusion on the last page.

And it was misleading.  You said that the chapter was inaccurate.  You did so in the context of an argument about how bad the book was.  The inaccuracy that you noted was a minor error on a figure that you personally admitted was immaterial to the chapter.  However, you didn't state that in your argument:  you simply stated in your review that it was "inaccurate".

And, BTW:  I don't really think your entire review is inherently untrustworthy.  The entire point of that paragraph was to show how absurd it is to conclude that one little irrelevant inaccuracy renders an entire argument, chapter, or book untrustworthy.

So you are blasting HH for being untrustworthy, yet you think that your own postings are immune from scrutiny because they simply don't matter.  Then why do you post them, and defend them with such vigor and animosity?  And if you think that all reviews written by people online are inherently untrustworthy, then I know exactly how much faith I should put in anything you write.  (See how fun this is?  You like to attack folks who disagree with you, but those attacks can be turned right back around.  It's so much easier, and more fun, just to debate the facts and content rather than to argue about "what you thought I meant I thought I said".)

Edited by k-troop - 5/1/12 at 12:08pm
Well posted k-troop. Good luck with your valiant attempts to edify. It is ironic that the charge of bias leveled by certain posters at HH is so obviously true of them. But that is hardly surprising.

My reason for considering HH's comparative analysis somewhat self-serving is that it comes across as a bit defensive and would have been better coming from someone else - a sophisticated golf journalist for example. But how many such people exist these days (rhetorical). If I were Haney I would perhaps have done likewise, since the need to counter one's ill-informed gainsayers with actual data would be overwhelming. In an ideal world others would have done the job. I am supposing that they have not.

I agree that HH is NOT claiming overall superiority over Harmon regarding Tiger's record. Indeed he gives Harmon due respect, noting Tiger's many triumphs under his tutelage. It is simply silly to suggest otherwise IMO.

You haven't presented facts you're just regurgatating the same stats HH used to compare his performance to Harmon which I don't dispute at face value.  My argument is if I look at Top 5 or Top 15 finishes rather than Top 3 and Top 10 I might find the numbers favor Harmon which would explain why HH wouldn't use those.  If you want to believe HH just pulled Top 3 and Top 10 out of his hat and threw them in the book and didn't look at all the combinations to see which ones favored him then we'll just have to agree to disagree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop

I'm not arguing that one cannot manipulate statistics.  I'm saying that it's perfectly possible (in fact, most likely) that statistics say what they purport to say.  You're clearly saying that HH manipulated the statistics so that they would show that HH was the better coach.  You didn't say "the chapter is full of lies," but you're clearly implying it.  When someone is arguing a conclusion using intentionally manipulated data, then that is dishonest--and this is exactly what you're accusing HH of doing.

How can you not see the bias in your own posts?  Do you have any evidence of this, other than "I'm sure if you picked some other random finish point, then the numbers would favor Butch."

Here are the stats that Butch uses:  win%, top-3%, and top-10%, all pretty straightforward.  He's not picking "finished 7th%", or "% of rounds shot in the 60s in Florida", or something stupid like that.  He claims to have used two sources for his numbers:  PGATour.com, and Tiger's website.  If you look at the appendices, HH lists Tiger's finish for 111 events that he played while under Hank's tutelage, including events like the PGA Grand Slam, Skins Game, Target World Challenge, etc.  Since he only counted 91 events in his stats, it's reasonable to conclude that he only counted PGA Tour official money events in his comparison (though he doesn't explicitly state which events he counted).

Win%:  34/127 (27%) under Butch; 31/91 (34%) under HH.

Top-3%:  55/127 (43%) under Butch; 52/91 (57%) under HH.

Top-10%:  82/127 (65%) under Butch; 66/91 (73%) under HH.

Those numbers are consistent.  Why is it that, looking at these numbers, you'd "guess" that some other statistical finishing point would favor Butch, and that HH manipulated the numbers to convey a false conclusion?  The answer is clear:  you are biased.

The University of Michigan did a study of political opinion among citizens about 6 years ago; their conclusion was that the more firmly held a political belief, the less likely the believer was to be responsive to facts.  In fact, when you presented one of the truly devoted with a concrete, indisputable fact which contradicted their worldview, they would find a way to spin that fact to further support their misguided opinion (usually by citing press bias and accusing the reporter of lying, or statistical manipulation).

Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf

I don't have the book any longer, but if I remember correctly, in one citing HH used Top 3 to compare himself to Butch, and in another he used Top 10.  I haven't done the math (I really don't care that much), but I'd guess there's a reason he selected those ranges specifically, rather than maintain consistency in his analysis.  I'd also guess if one did the math they'd find a range maybe Top 5 or Top 20 where the numbers would favor Butch.

To remind you newtogolf, this is what you said earlier - that HH was being INCONSISTENT in his analysis, by using the Top 3 in one case and the Top 10 in another.

You seem to have changed your tune now that k-troop has called you out.

Your point that different results might be obtained using a different method (or cut-point as we say in the business), that is of course true. But it is obvious, I.e. trivially true - so what? If you are suggesting that HH has cherry-picked his cut-points, where's the evidence for that? I use cut-points all the time in my own work (oncology biomarkers) and sometimes use stats to select the most appropriate one to test a hypothesis. I wouldn't expect HH to do that, I doubt he knows what a regression tree is. Nor would it be entirely appropriate for him to do so In this case. Others (including you newtogolf) are free to run any other cut-points they wish of course.
Edited by Chas - 5/1/12 at 2:18pm
Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf

You haven't presented facts you're just regurgatating the same stats HH used to compare his performance to Harmon which I don't dispute at face value.  My argument is if I look at Top 5 or Top 15 finishes rather than Top 3 and Top 10 I might find the numbers favor Harmon which would explain why HH wouldn't use those.  If you want to believe HH just pulled Top 3 and Top 10 out of his hat and threw them in the book and didn't look at all the combinations to see which ones favored him then we'll just have to agree to disagree.

Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop

Win%:  34/127 (27%) under Butch; 31/91 (34%) under HH.

Top-3%:  55/127 (43%) under Butch; 52/91 (57%) under HH.

Top-10%:  82/127 (65%) under Butch; 66/91 (73%) under HH.

Maybe he used top 3 and top 10 since those have been the standards since before Jack Nicklaus. At least that's how I recall seeing a few player's career resume's presented.

Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop

And it was misleading.  You said that the chapter was inaccurate.  You did so in the context of an argument about how bad the book was.  The inaccuracy that you noted was a minor error on a figure that you personally admitted was immaterial to the chapter.  However, you didn't state that in your argument:  you simply stated in your review that it was "inaccurate".

Well, it WAS inaccurate. If you wanted details, all you had to do was ask.

Oh wait, you did. You asked what was inaccurate, and I responded within a few minutes (post #361): "I didn't bother checking his figures on Hank vs. Butch, because I don't care. But before he even got to that, he mentioned that Tiger had never fallen below #2 in the world rankings between 1998 and 2010, and I knew just from memory (which I verified) that he was #3 for several weeks in 2004. It's not a big deal, but you would think that if I knew that, Diaz would know it, or at least some editor or proofreader at the publishers would notice the mistake. It doesn't give you a lot of confidence in Hank looking at Tiger's website and punching numbers into his calculator, if nobody is checking this stuff."

Now please explain what the hell is misleading about that. I said right up front that I wasn't talking about his coaching comparison, I explained the WGR error in detail, I said it wasn't a big deal, and I said it just indicated that they weren't as careful as you would expect professional authors and publishers to be. You asked for clarification of a throw-away comment, and I gave it, as fast as humanly possible. That is as non-misleading as anyone can be. Anybody truly seeking clarification, and not spoiling for a fight, would have said, "Thank you for the clarification."

Not you and Chas, though. Chas wants to know (post #362) if that's "the sole basis for your mistrust of HH's stats analyses in the book?"

Now where the hell did that come from? I never said anything about mistrusting Hank's stats analysis. I can understand how someone could get the idea I was talking about errors in the stats analysis from that throw-away comment, and that's why I was happy to clarify that I was talking about a different error when you asked.

But Chas was responding to the clarification, not the review, so why should it still be unclear? I had specifically stated that I didn't even care about the analysis, and was talking about a completely different error.

I replied (post #363) to Chas and explained, again, that it wasn't a big deal. I even said that it was only important if you were going to make a bar bet about Tiger's record. I don't know how I could have made it more clear that it was a trivial error. But if you demand that I answer "Yes or no, can his numbers be trusted?" after I've already shown that he makes mistakes, then of course the answer is no. It doesn't mean I don't trust him to do his best to be honest and accurate, it just means I don't trust him to not make mistakes, because he clearly does.

But I was wasting my time. Chas next claims (post #364) that I implied that Hank's book "can't be trusted in the least," and said it was wrong to condemn the entire book over some minor oversight. WTF???

There was no blanket condemnation of the book, and certainly not for that error. The conclusion of my review was this (post #359):
"Bottom line, it's worth reading if you're interested in golf, but it should have been written 20 years from now, and not while Tiger is still actively competing. I'm glad I read it, and I'm glad I got it from the library, so Hank didn't get any of my money."

In other words, I recommended the book, which is the opposite of condemnation, and the problems I did have with it had to do with the timing and the personal details revealed. The WGR error had nothing to do with my overall opinion of the book, as I had just explained in the two posts written directly to Chas, which he had read and responded to.

So I try to explain all that for the third time (post #365). But I was still wasting my time, because now here you are, saying, "So you are blasting HH for being untrustworthy..."

The only occurrence of any word with the root of "trust" in either of my reviews was in the context of Hank violating Tiger's confidences, and in every followup, I've emphasized that I didn't think his WGR error was important (except in the very limited sense of showing that he is capable of making an error), so your post is IMO more misleading than anything I've said, and IMO deliberately misleading, when you keep ignoring what I say in followup posts. You clearly aren't interested in understanding or clarification, you just want to fight.

I don't. I'm done. Have a nice day.
Edited by brocks - 5/1/12 at 5:12pm

I just started reading this book and it's a great read...I have to suggest it to anyone who hasn't read it yet!

Can anyone argue that Tiger didn't score better during the HH years? Both on and off the course.........

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pablo68

Can anyone argue that Tiger didn't score better during the HH years? Both on and off the course.........

Wow, isn't that clever?

A clue:  that stuff is soooo 2 years ago.

Quote:
Originally Posted by turtleback

Wow, isn't that clever?

A clue:  that stuff is soooo 2 years ago.

A clue: saying 'that is soooo 2 years ago' is actually soooo ten years ago.

Like gag me with a spoon...............or a mashie.

Read the book, and it got me to thinking about Tiger now after watching him melt down at the PGA just like most other majors this year. Tiger starting really changing his swing under Butch in 1997, and it wasn't really until the middle of 1999 - a period of 2 years - where it clicked, and then he went bananas in 2000. Tiger started working with Hank in late 2003 and it wasn't until 2005 - a little less than 2 years - where he started to click with that swing, and then from 2006 - 2009 I think he had the best years of his career. He didn't win as many majors as under Butch, but he still won his fair share, and his overall winning percentage was astounding. I think at one point from the end of 2007 to the beginning of 2008 he won like 60% of all 12 tournaments he entered. If his knee didn't disintegrate, who knows what 2008 would've looked like?

Tiger really just started working with Foley in early 2010, and if we count most of 2011 as a wash due to injury, it's really only been about 2 years since he's been healthy under Foley. In other words, if the trend continues, the Fed Ex Cup stretch here in 2012 and 2013 are when he should be on schedule to begin performing at peak level under this swing. Of course, he is pushing 37 and has had major knee surgery several times, but I really hope Tiger can come back to peak form because I think Rory is ready to explode and then we'll finally have a titan vs. titan golf world to look forward to for a couple of years. We always hoped that Phil vs. Tiger would be that kind of rivalry, but it wasn't really that close.

Also, everyone is pointing to Tiger's poor putting as the major reason he's not as good as he once was, and although I agree it needs some work, putting did not kill him during this PGA. It was his continued inconsistency with the driver and distance control on approaches that killed his chances. While Rory was sinking 5-8 footers like there was no tomorrow in the last round, Tiger was missing 15-25 footers by inches. He stuck 2 10 footers to save par and missed a 40 foot eagle putt by about 2 millimeters. On the back 9, he drove one par 5 into an unplayable lie, and when he drove the other par 5 in the fairway, he snap hooked the 3 wood approach into the sand dunes. 2 bogeys that the old Tiger would've made birdies.

Anyway, let's see what the future holds...

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmoan2

Read the book, and it got me to thinking about Tiger now after watching him melt down at the PGA just like most other majors this year. Tiger starting really changing his swing under Butch in 1997, and it wasn't really until the middle of 1999 - a period of 2 years - where it clicked, and then he went bananas in 2000. Tiger started working with Hank in late 2003 and it wasn't until 2005 - a little less than 2 years - where he started to click with that swing, and then from 2006 - 2009 I think he had the best years of his career. He didn't win as many majors as under Butch, but he still won his fair share, and his overall winning percentage was astounding. I think at one point from the end of 2007 to the beginning of 2008 he won like 60% of all 12 tournaments he entered. If his knee didn't disintegrate, who knows what 2008 would've looked like?

Tiger really just started working with Foley in early 2010, and if we count most of 2011 as a wash due to injury, it's really only been about 2 years since he's been healthy under Foley. In other words, if the trend continues, the Fed Ex Cup stretch here in 2012 and 2013 are when he should be on schedule to begin performing at peak level under this swing. Of course, he is pushing 37 and has had major knee surgery several times, but I really hope Tiger can come back to peak form because I think Rory is ready to explode and then we'll finally have a titan vs. titan golf world to look forward to for a couple of years. We always hoped that Phil vs. Tiger would be that kind of rivalry, but it wasn't really that close.

Also, everyone is pointing to Tiger's poor putting as the major reason he's not as good as he once was, and although I agree it needs some work, putting did not kill him during this PGA. It was his continued inconsistency with the driver and distance control on approaches that killed his chances. While Rory was sinking 5-8 footers like there was no tomorrow in the last round, Tiger was missing 15-25 footers by inches. He stuck 2 10 footers to save par and missed a 40 foot eagle putt by about 2 millimeters. On the back 9, he drove one par 5 into an unplayable lie, and when he drove the other par 5 in the fairway, he snap hooked the 3 wood approach into the sand dunes. 2 bogeys that the old Tiger would've made birdies.

Anyway, let's see what the future holds...

I tend to agree with this thought process of this post.  Well said.

Tiger - in my eyes needs to master his distance control with this new swing.  I also think there have been times when he has been one dimensional with the new swing.  Like hitting 'fades' into draw winds.  Like the infamous 6th hole triple bogey at the Open Championship on Sunday this year...

Tiger should've never been in that trap.  Watching that approach - it appeared he tried to hit a fade - into a draw wind.  And started the ball out to the left of the green - bringing that pot bunker into play.  I could be wrong, but even if he was just trying to hit the ball straight - and just simply hit a pull - and the wind prevented it from curving back to the green.  I just think missing shots like that has been the demise of Tiger 3.0.  His game is very close - he was in contention during the last three majors... But he needs to keep working on the new swing pattern.

Well said moan. And you got the approval of a goat humper on one of your first posts. Tiger is sooo close to ripping off a string of wins. But for now he's 1985 Tom Watson.

I'm surprised it has taken this long. I know that some previous years weren't great due to recurring injury, but I had 2012 - the latter half, specifically - pegged as the year he would begin to see things turn around in the majors.

And we did see that, but by "turn around" I meant win.

But at the same time, you can play great golf and still lose, and one swing at the worst time can change your strategy, and result in entirely different scenarios, so who knows what we'd be seeing right now if Tiger had managed to save a par on an early hole at the U.S. Open on Saturday or had not made triple on #6 at the British Open, or had decided to go for the green in round three on the third hole in the PGA.

He needs to win a major next year to have a shot at getting to 19, but given what we saw in 2012, I've officially changed my vote to "no" on "will he get to 19."

It certainly looks like Tigers chances of getting to 19 will be much more difficult than he or some of us expected.  He said it himself today, he went out in the third round too relaxed and it cost him.  I've been watching all season and you can see in his face that he's not the same Tiger, especially in his losses.  He used to have that cocky air about him when he walked down the fairway and on the putting green, these days he just seems uncomfortable in his own skin.

IMO, 2013 is the critical year, he needs to win at least one major, if he doesn't then I'll agree he won't make it to 19, right now I'm still voting "Yes".

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas

I'm surprised it has taken this long. I know that some previous years weren't great due to recurring injury, but I had 2012 - the latter half, specifically - pegged as the year he would begin to see things turn around in the majors.

And we did see that, but by "turn around" I meant win.

But at the same time, you can play great golf and still lose, and one swing at the worst time can change your strategy, and result in entirely different scenarios, so who knows what we'd be seeing right now if Tiger had managed to save a par on an early hole at the U.S. Open on Saturday or had not made triple on #6 at the British Open, or had decided to go for the green in round three on the third hole in the PGA.

He needs to win a major next year to have a shot at getting to 19, but given what we saw in 2012, I've officially changed my vote to "no" on "will he get to 19."

Quote:
Originally Posted by newtogolf

He said it himself today, he went out in the third round too relaxed and it cost him.

FWIW, I don't buy that. Too relaxed? C'mon. I think he was tired of answering questions about his putting and his swing so he tried to change the topic.

I think, too, talk of current Tiger is probably best suited to another thread. I'm not sure what thread exactly, but this one's about the book, and I'm sure we have another more suitable thread for current Tiger talk. If not, we should create one - but it's Tiger talk, so I'm sure there's a thread. :)

Quote:
Originally Posted by iacas

FWIW, I don't buy that. Too relaxed? C'mon. I think he was tired of answering questions about his putting and his swing so he tried to change the topic.

I think, too, talk of current Tiger is probably best suited to another thread. I'm not sure what thread exactly, but this one's about the book, and I'm sure we have another more suitable thread for current Tiger talk. If not, we should create one - but it's Tiger talk, so I'm sure there's a thread. :)

Why isn't this thread in the books section?  Just curious?  :P

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